Eatonville: The Oldest Black Town
A hundred years ago, in communities across the U.S., white residents forced thousands of black families to flee their homes. Even a century later, these towns remain almost entirely white.
One correction; Eatonville ‘ISN’T’ the first Black town, there were many during and before slavery as well.
History’s Lost Black Towns
Rosewood: Rediscovering an almost
Seneca Village, N.Y.: Taking a
Stroll Through History
Five Points District, N.Y.: High
Stakes in Lower Manhattan
The Tragedy of Urban Renewal: The
destruction and survival of a New York City neighborhood
Weeksville, N.Y.: A Refuge for
Southerners and Northerners
Greenwood, Okla.: The Black Wall
Black Wall Street, Little Africa,
Tulsa, Oklahoma 1921
Freedman’s Village, Va.: The
Nation’s Safe Haven
Allensworth, Calif.: A California
Freedmen’s Town, Texas: Houston’s
A victim of gentrification – like so many traditionally Black neighborhoods throughout the Americas – in the 1990s, a large swath of North Dallas’ Freedman’s Town (which, by this time, people were calling “North Dallas” or “State-Thomas”) was taken for the building of the Central Expressway (U.S. Highway 75). But as construction of the Expressway began, workers dug up remains from what had been a cemetery established by African Americans.
The Freedman’s Cemetery is known to hold the remains of more than 7,000 African Americans and the construction of the Central Expressway unearthed numerous burial artifacts. Because of community activism, those artifacts were collected and today are part of the permanent collection of Dallas’ Historic Fair Park African American Museum http://www.aamdallas.org/.
Those visiting Dallas, Texas can also visit what remains of the Freedman’s Memorial Cemetery at the intersection of Lemmon Avenue and North Central Expressway. It is a historic landmark that is a monument to Dallas’ early African American citizens. Graced by striking bronze statues created by the artist David S. Newton, the Freedman’s Cemetery is maintained by the Freedman’s Cemetery Memorial Foundation http://freedmansfoundation.org/.
Many towns I could make a whole post about; I would go even deeper, but this post is already going to be pretty long. My apologies.
Muchakinock, Iowa: The Strike
Buxton, Iowa: ‘A Black Man’s
New Philadelphia, Ill.: A Pioneer
Town in the Frontier
Pin Oak Colony, Ill.: Byproduct
of the Northwest
Blackdom, N.M.: The Black Ghost
From the 1820’s to the 1951; most of these towns, cities, and districts were destroyed by the government, and bigotry. There are so many to showcase, but I’ll stop at this point.