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HCCS American African American Migration Essay

HCCS American African American Migration Essay

Question Description

I’m working on a history writing question and need a sample draft to help me learn.

The African American “Great Migration”

Between the end of the Civil War (1865) and the beginning ofthe Great Depression (1929), almost two million African Americans movedfrom the rural South to look for new opportunities. While some movedwest, most of this Great Migration, as the large number of AfricanAmericans leaving the South was called, moved to the Northeast and UpperMidwest. More than two-thirds of them moved to the following cities:New York, Chicago, Philadelphia, St. Louis, Detroit, Pittsburgh,Cleveland, and Indianapolis.

There are “push” and “pull” factors for any migration (themovement of a large number of people). Even though the Civil War hadended and laws were passed to end slavery and protect the right to vote,African Americans still experienced intense racism. Groups like the KuKlux Klan caused death threats, violence, and lynchings (murder byhanging). According to researchers at the Tuskegee Institute, there werethirty-five hundred lynchings and other murders committed in the Southbetween 1865 and 1900. For African Americans fleeing this violence,northern and midwestern cities offered an opportunity to escape thedangers of the South.

In addition to this “push” out of the South, African Americanswere also “pulled” to the cities by job opportunities and the chance tovote (for men, at least). Many African Americans did not have money tomove themselves, but factory owners and other businesses helped pay fortheir moves. Because of racism, African American workers still had thelower-paying jobs in steel mills, mines, construction, and meat packing.In the railroad industry, they often worked as porters or servants. Inother businesses, they worked as janitors, waiters, or cooks. AfricanAmerican women, who faced racism and sexism, often worked as maids anddomestic servants. Nevertheless, African Americans earned higher wagesin the North than they did for the same jobs in the South, and foundhousing more easily.

However, life in the city was still difficult. AfricanAmericans still experienced the higher cost of living in the North,especially in terms of rent and food. As a result, housing was oftenovercrowded and dirty. They still experienced racism from landlords,bankers and neighbors. So why move to the North, since the economicproblems were similar to those in the South? African Americans moved fornon-economic gains. In the North they found greater educationalopportunities and personal freedom. Similarly, unlike the South whereAfrican Americans often experienced violence, life in larger, crowdedcities permitted African Americans to move, work, and speak freely.

Directions: Answer the following question.

Discussion Parameters

Your answer should exhibitcareful thought and logical reasoning and provide evidence for yourposition. Each answer should be at least 5-7 long sentences.Use correct spelling, punctuation, and grammar.

1. What is the “push” factor that caused African Americans to leavethe South? Do you think they were justifiable to leave the south?

2. What were two non-economic gains from African Americans who moved to Northern cities?

3. Why was life in the city still different for African Americans? Compare and contrast city life to southern life.

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