City - Chicago IL - Miracle Ham and Hamburgers 1941
Photograph - Colorized Photo
Colorized photo from 1941 Original title: 47th Street Photographer: Russel Lee Location: About 118 E 47th St, looking at Indiana, Bronzeville
This is Bronzeville, a location that mostly black Americans lived in, scene in its heyday.
In the early 1920's racism was rampant, many people left the cotton fields, and escaped lynching by moving into South Chicago. In the dark days of racism, white people felt they were some how superior to black people and they separated them where ever they could.
If you wanted to try on shoes, try on clothes etc, you couldn't, white people wouldn't let them. If you wanted a drink at the local Five and Dime, they had special glasses with a red bottom, just so white people knew they were drinking from the right glass. The red ones were for black people only. They were very suppressed, better than lynching but not ideal.
This street however became their street. They were able to flourish because white people didn't come in here, and take over. You could buy name brand clothes just like you could in the segregated towns, along with any other goods. A school was built and many people graduated to become accountants and such.
But by the mid 1950's equal rights came out, and segregation had to end, and people left this area, because they could. And they did, and that's when this area started to suffer, if you could live anywhere now, why be stuck on a street?
Today this street doesn't look quite the same, though the buildings did last the test of time, the one we are looking at I believe is still in use. The one on the right lasted till about 2015 and now its a nice green grassy field. The apartments in the back right also still exist.
August 21st, 2019
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