Jim Crow laws were enacted to enforce racial segregation in the Southern U.S. and consequently invoked violence and discrimination against African Americans across the country. As activists advocated for better political representation, protections, education and employment in Black communities, a great number of Southern African Americans pursued new opportunities in Northern cities like Chicago, Detroit and New York (From Black Freedom Struggle in the United States)
While the Jim Crow era persisted until Brown v Board of Education in 1954, resources related to the New Deal and World War II are separated into their own section to recognize the unique impact of WWII and the New Deal on the United States and the African American Community.
The Plessy v. Ferguson decision established the constitutional grounds for legal, racial segregation with the recognition of the "separate but equal" doctrine.
Atlanta Race Riots from The Auburn Avenue Research Library on African American Culture and History in Atlanta, GA, looks at the 1906 riots using primary source documents to describe the riots and aftermath.
The July 28, 1917 Silent Protest Parade on Fifth Avenue in New York City, was one of the first major mass demonstrations by African Americans. Conceived by James Weldon Johnson and organized by the NAACP with church and community leaders, the protest parade united an estimated 10,000 African Americans who marched down Fifth Avenue, gathering at 55th–59th Streets and proceeding to Madison Square, silently carrying banners condemning racist violence and racial discrimination. From The Beinecke Library at Yale
Many African American soldiers returned from WWI with a newfound sense of pride and determination for equality, but home was still plagued by racial violence, heightened during the “Red Summer” of 1919. Dr. Geoff Ward, Associate Professor of African and African American Studies at Washington University, discusses his research and engagement efforts to address the history of racial violence and its legacies today. Presented in partnership with the National Archives at Kansas City and the Greater Kansas City Black History Study Group.