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Feb
22
2017
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Articles About African-American culture and history :: Page 2

  • Let freedom ring

    The streets of Yellow Springs echoed with the sounds of the civil rights movement Monday morning. Admirers of Martin Luther King Jr. chanted “We Shall Overcome” as they marched through the streets; a jovial tribute to one of the most iconic and important figures in American history. Upon the crowd’s arrival at the Central Chapel […]

  • I’ve got the Blues

    The annual AACW Blues Fest will return this year, with events held around town. (photo by Aaron Zaremsky)

    The AACW Blues Fest went off without a hitch last weekend at the Antioch Amphitheater.

  • Juneteenth a Scrumptious Affair

    Juneteenth celebrations included a pie contest and Motown dancing last Friday night at the Bryan Center.

  • TLT, AACW join for roots fest

    Every year the local blues fest reminds community members about the roots of contemporary popular music. If gospel can spawn the blues, jazz, reggae and rap, then what can the art of the local community tell us about our own history and roots? African American Cross-Cultural Works and the Tecumseh Land Trust aim to find out when they put on the first ever Roots Fest on Saturday, March 27, at Bryan Community Center. It will be an evening of performances in which villagers use the arts to connect to and share their own stories.

  • Assessing the value of diversity

    For Jewell Graham, the 1950s, ’60s and ’70s were exhilarating times to live in the village. Having come to Yellow Springs as a young African-American woman with her new husband, Paul, who after graduating from Antioch had been offered a job at Vernay Laboratories, Graham was impressed with the quality of relationships between blacks and whites. Many businesses were integrated in a way unusual for the time, and a passion for the civil rights movement further brought people together. There was considerable socializing between blacks and whites in her world, as well as a sense of shared purpose.

  • Do housing costs affect diversity?

    If local diversity can be measured by the number of African Americans who live within the geographical boundaries of Yellow Springs, the village has experienced three decades of decreasing diversity, and is likely wrapping up a fourth. Since 1970, the village has lost about 500 African-American residents, mirroring a larger regional trend.

  • Village youth say race is still an issue

    Yellow Springs can be a supportive town for black youth to grow up in, according to a group of 10 current Yellow Springs High School students and recent graduates in recent interviews. But the village is not immune to the issues that tend to divide the community by color and burden some African-American families disproportionately. Instances of discrimination are very subtle, and can be unintentional, but they do occur here, the youth said, and they pose obstacles both of perception and in actual practice that young people of color are challenged to overcome.

  • Virginia Hamilton book and award— Curating legacy of American writer

    virginia hamilton manuscripts office

    For many years after her death in 2002, the glass door to Virginia Hamilton’s writing office remained closed. Every day Arnold Adoff, her husband and writing partner, passed the office at their home in Yellow Springs, but he didn’t want to open it. Then in 2007 fellow children’s book writer Kacy Cook helped crack the vault, and out poured 35 years of research, notes, speeches and manuscripts that formed the gritty trail of an American intellectual and her life as mother, wife and prolific writer.

  • Achievement gap complex, but true

    When Joyce McCurdy accepted a teaching position in the Yellow Springs School District, there was a black chief of police, a black member of Council, and a black member of school board. The principal of the high school was black, and three of McCurdy’s colleagues were also black — and actively involved in the social issues of the day. The year was 1965.

  • Diversity gap creates social divide

    When Isabel Newman graduated from Bryan High School in 1943, Antioch Bookplate President Ernest Morgan hired her to work for the company. Soon after, he sent her to a six-week course at the Mergenthaler linotype school in New York, and upon her return, she worked for the company for over 40 years, retiring as a manager. At that company, whose president actively promoted racial integration, she recalled that typically a fourth of the employees were minorities. The support for a racially diverse staff appeared to be the same at Vernay Laboratories, where two of Newman’s sisters worked, Yellow Springs Instruments and Antioch College, the place that bred all three companies and their socially minded leaders.

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