History.com – The Great Migration


Hi everyone!

I wanted to know more about the Great Migration, other than the fact that many African Americans moved up north.  I think this is a great article which includes why the Great Migration happened, how African Americans traveled, and what they did when they arrived in the north.  It also gives some cultural background of African Americans during this time period.

For those who migrated, there was a lot of competition for jobs and also for housing: “Some residential neighborhoods enacted covenants requiring white property owners to agree not to sell to blacks; these would remain legal until the Court struck them down in 1948.”

The article explains the make-up of the United States after the migration ended: “Whereas in 1900, nine out of every 10 black Americans lived in the South, and three out of every four lived on farms, by 1970 the South was home to less than half of the country’s African-Americans, with only 25 percent living in the region’s rural areas.”

This is a wild number.  I think it’s pretty amazing to see how our country’s demographic changes over the years.

The article also explains how the Great Migration lead to an increase in political activism among African Americans, and how prejudice/racism were widely practiced.  I am interested to see how Toni Morrison writes these into Jazz.



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