Detroit: The Black Bottom Community

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Arcadia Publishing, 2009 - History - 127 pages
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Between 1914 and 1951, Black Bottom's black community emerged out of the need for black migrants to find a place for themselves. Because of the stringent racism and discrimination in housing, blacks migrating from the South seeking employment in Detroit's burgeoning industrial metropolis were forced to live in this former European immigrant community. During World War I through World War II, Black Bottom became a social, cultural, and economic center of struggle and triumph, as well as a testament to the tradition of black self-help and community-building strategies that have been the benchmark of black struggle. Black Bottom also had its troubles and woes. However, it would be these types of challenges confronting Black Bottom residents that would become part of the cohesive element that turned Black Bottom into a strong and viable community.
 

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Contents

Acknowledgments
6
African Americans in Black Bottom
25
Life in Black Bottom
45
The Struggle for Decent Housing
55
Eleanor Roosevelt Visits Black Bottom
69
Schools Churches and Organizations
77
Sojourner Truth and the Riots
103
Urban Renewal
117
Bibliography
126
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About the author (2009)

Local historian Jeremy Williams combines careful research with archived photographs for an insightful look at Black Bottom's early beginnings, its racial transformation, the building of a socioeconomically solvent community through various processes of institution building and networking, and its ultimate demise and the dislocation of its residents.

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