Jazz Appreciation Month was created by the Smithsonian National Museum of American History in 2002 to celebrate the uniquely American heritage of jazz.
Jazz was developed as a fusion of ragtime, blues and band music that originated in the African-American culture of New Orleans during the first decade of the 1900s. By 1919, jazz reached Chicago and became a national phenomenon with wide acceptance into the dance scene and the musical style began to be exported to Europe.
For more information about the history of jazz music, check out the following links:
To hear some Jazz and the history of Storyville, New Orleans click this link: http://goo.gl/6Xzy4d