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Push and Pull Factors that Migrating African Americans faced

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Chandler Williamson

on 8 April 2016

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Transcript of Push and Pull Factors that Migrating African Americans faced

The Great Migration Research Project
Push and Pull Factors that Migrating African Americans faced during the 1915- 1960 time period
Created by Chandler Williamson, Aric Nelson, Makayla Martinez, Annie Petitt, and Sarrah Garcia
Jim Crow Laws
This series of laws made it legal to segregate blacks and whites.
The decision by the Supreme Court in the Plessy vs. Ferguson case encouraged the separation of Blacks and Whites and would mean that everything from schools to hospitals would be separated by race.
In most cases the schools and buses would be in much worse condition than the ones for whites so many blacks still felt like they were treated unequally.
This sense of discomfort for Blacks in the South was a huge push factor for Blacks to move north in search of a better life.
Excerpt: 'The Warmth of Other Suns

In The Warmth of Other Suns, by Isabel Wilkerson, some migrators, especially blacks, had to hide the fact that they were leaving from their bosses. Some people valued the North and the “promises it holds" more than their family, evidently leaving some of their only relatives, most probably never to meet again.

"There was no explaining to James and Velma the stuffed bags and chaos and all that was at stake or why they had to put on their shoes and not cry and bring undue attention from anyone who might happen to see them leaving.” (Paragraph 2)

“One by one, her children had left and gone up north. Sam and Cleve to Ohio. Josie to Syracuse.Irene to Milwaukee." (Paragraph 4)
History.com Staff. "Great Migration." History.com. A&E Television Networks, 01 Jan. 2010. Web. 23 Mar. 2016.
The Great Migration
This time period known as the Great Migration was the relocation of more than 6 million African Americans coming from the rural South to the industrial cities of the North.
Many families left in search of better jobs and a better life for their children.
They were motivated to leave because of harsh segregationist laws that restricted their freedom and limited them from achieving economic success.
Push Factors
Even after the Civil War, when Reconstruction was put into effect in order to restore the basic civil duties of African Americans, there was still a heavy feeling of white supremacy in the south and many families looked for a way out.
The only work for Blacks was working the lands as part of the Sharecropper system but the wages were so low that there was almost no chance of achieving economic success.
The shortage of industrial labor workers in the north meant there were many open jobs so this was a motivating factor for many to move north.

Kitchenette Building

In Kitchenette Building, a poem by Gwendolyn Brooks, normal, strong words for us mean very little to them. Words and phrases that should want to make them work harder, don't.

“Grayed in, and gray. “Dream" makes a giddy sound not strong/ Like “rent", “feeding a wife”, “satisfying a man.”” (Stanza 1)

One Way Ticket

In One Way Ticket, a poem by Langston Hughes, we are told about how people would move their entire lives North and East, to a future that was uncertain. Though it is a fairly short poem it expresses how people tried to go to places far North or far East.

“I pick up my life/ And take it on the train,/ To Los Angeles, Bakersfield,/ Seattle, Oakland, Salt Lake" (stanza 2)

Ghastly Deeds of Race Rioters Told

In Ghastly Deeds of Race Rioters Told, an article published in 1919 by The Chicago Defender, we are told terrible stories of men, women, and children, both black and white, being brutally murdered. People turned on people and nobody was safe to live peacefully.

“The trouble climaxed when white occupants of the Angelus apartments began firing shots and throwing missiles from their windows” (35th Vortex of Night's Rioting, Paragraph 3, Page 2)
“A mounted policeman, unknown, fatally wounded a small boy in the 48th block on Dearborn street and wss shot to death by some unknown rioter" (Rioting Extends Into Loop, Paragraph 1, Page 3)
Says Lax Conditions Caused Race Riots
In 1919 the Chicago Daily News and Carl Sandberg reported the Chicago Race Riot of 1919 saying that “lax conditions caused race riots”. In this article it is declared that the Chief of Police promised to a delegation of prominent colored men that he would do, his utmost to protect negroes. This promise was clearly ignored as many black people were brutally injured and maimed under the policemen's supervision. Also, police ignore the fact of obvious abuse to the black population.

Says Lax Conditions Caused Race Riots Continued
“A careful examination of the body of the unidentified colored boy- who was drowned, it is said, when he was thrown from a raft by rioters yesterday- showed no bruises indicating that he had been attacked, the police announced. They declared they believed the boy drowned when he got into deep water" (Bathing Beach Deserted, Paragraph 2, Page 6)
- “And the migrants kept coming.”
• The North promised a “better life” since slavery was abolished but wasn’t the “promised land” African Americans hoped it would be. This painting shows that regardless of reality African American still went looking for better lives in the North.

• Throughout this narrative examples of narratives of racism are shown in both the North and South. An example is a riot in Chicago that was caused by black youths being attacked after floating onto a white beach. This shows an example of the similarities between the North and South when it came to slavery.

Jacob Lawrence
"The Migration of the Negro"

Image Analysis

Composition: Family pf African American migrants carrying their belongings, flock of birds overhead
Setting: Hilly countryside, heading north
Subjects: Family of migrants carrying all their belongings with them as they head North
Actions: From every southern town, migrants left by the hundreds to the north. The Birds are also migrating to a new life
Examples of Each Medium
Mood: Sad, tiresome. the bleak landscape and skies and drooped heads
Predictions: Both the migrant family and the migratory birds will make it to their final destination
Newspaper Article-
"Kitchenette Building"
The word “Kitchenette” is a term used for houses and apartments that have been chopped into tiny even smaller units. This was a part of discriminatory housing practices and unofficial segregation aimed at African-American families in Chicago. These were run by basically slumlords and were kept in bad conditions. Even with the peril that was held in the North such as the bad living conditions was still better than the life they faced if they stayed in the South because at least in the North you had a chance to earn enough to make it out of the kitchenette.
This advertisement showcases African American's in Chicago which is trying to slowly trying to introduce the idea of African American's as human. This gives blacks in the South hope that if they move North that things will change.
Throughout this article we are shown that even with African American men going to serve in the war they still weren't given the same rights both from the North and South. In Chicago they were faced with the worst of the riots but also helped bring light to the issue through the
Chicago Defender
Full transcript