The author of Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism says,
According to John A. Wright, Kinloch: Missouri’s First Black [City] (Chicago: Arcadia, 2000), p. 127, Ferguson blocked the main road to Kinloch, the tiny black suburb to its west, with chains, trying to keep out black residents. Between 1940-60, while Ferguson’s white population grew by almost 400%, its black population was cut by 60%. Meanwhile, the black population of the St. Louis metropolitan area doubled, from just under 150,000 to just under 300,000. 

The author of Sundown Towns: A Hidden Dimension of American Racism says,

According to John A. Wright, Kinloch: Missouri’s First Black [City] (Chicago: Arcadia, 2000), p. 127, Ferguson blocked the main road to Kinloch, the tiny black suburb to its west, with chains, trying to keep out black residents. 

Between 1940-60, while Ferguson’s white population grew by almost 400%, its black population was cut by 60%. Meanwhile, the black population of the St. Louis metropolitan area doubled, from just under 150,000 to just under 300,000. 

to my beloved people of color as we go back to school

la-negra-barbuda:

sending positive vibes and strength to all the people of color who are going back to school at predominantly white institutions where we don’t see ourselves reflected in the textbooks, curriculum, or campus concerns, and who are also dealing with living in a society that doesn’t care about our lives. this summer has been especially rough emotionally for many of us and we know that there isn’t an end in sight, but find (make) time to take care of yourself in the midst of the turmoil.

you matter and deserve to be heard even when the syllabus erases you from history. you matter and deserve to be seen even when the student government does not support issues specific to your communities. you matter and deserve to not be fetishized even when your classmates are “learning” about your culture. you matter and deserve humanity even when your school campus does everything in its power to make current events in your community irrelevant to the culture of the campus. you matter and you deserve life.

don’t be apologetic about your emotions. don’t be afraid to be seen. don’t be afraid to be heard. don’t be afraid to take up space or time. don’t be afraid to stand up. don’t be afraid to fight back. you are beautiful. you are powerful. you are loved. you can do this.

obitoftheday:

Obit of the Day: “Rosemarie the Shake Dancer”
Rosemarie Black was one of the premiere Black burlesque dancers in Chicago. The petite Ms. Black (only 5’ 2”) would dazzle with her dancing and tantalize audiences with her erotic costumes - careful never to reveal it all. 
Born in 1934, in Mississippi, Ms. Black found her life thrown into disarray at age eight when her mother died. Left with her father, who was a raging alcoholic, she comforted herself with a small cowgirl costume a neighbor had made for her and the hope that her brothers in Chicago would call for her.
When one did, he was not ready to handle a young girl and Ms. Black would end up in foster care. 
Her life would change when she first stepped out on the stage as an exotic dancer at the age of 19. With myriad costumes (including Cleopatra and Little Bo Peep) and 45 different wigs, Ms. Black began earning fame as much for her character as her looks.
Note: You can see a wonderful collection of photos of Ms. Black in her elaborate costumes on her Facebook page.
Often called “The Bronze Temptress” and “The Leather Lady” she would open for comedians Redd Foxx and Nipsy Russell. She met James Brown and Oprah Winfrey. She was a celebrity. 
Ms. Black would dance into her 60s, and as late as 2011 would walk around in her eight-inch heels. She passed away on June 6, 2013 at the age of 79. 
Sources: Chicago Sun-Times and CBS Chicago
(Unidentified and undated image of Ms. Black from her Facebook page.)

obitoftheday:

Obit of the Day: “Rosemarie the Shake Dancer”

Rosemarie Black was one of the premiere Black burlesque dancers in Chicago. The petite Ms. Black (only 5’ 2”) would dazzle with her dancing and tantalize audiences with her erotic costumes - careful never to reveal it all. 

Born in 1934, in Mississippi, Ms. Black found her life thrown into disarray at age eight when her mother died. Left with her father, who was a raging alcoholic, she comforted herself with a small cowgirl costume a neighbor had made for her and the hope that her brothers in Chicago would call for her.

When one did, he was not ready to handle a young girl and Ms. Black would end up in foster care. 

Her life would change when she first stepped out on the stage as an exotic dancer at the age of 19. With myriad costumes (including Cleopatra and Little Bo Peep) and 45 different wigs, Ms. Black began earning fame as much for her character as her looks.

Note: You can see a wonderful collection of photos of Ms. Black in her elaborate costumes on her Facebook page.

Often called “The Bronze Temptress” and “The Leather Lady” she would open for comedians Redd Foxx and Nipsy Russell. She met James Brown and Oprah Winfrey. She was a celebrity. 

Ms. Black would dance into her 60s, and as late as 2011 would walk around in her eight-inch heels. She passed away on June 6, 2013 at the age of 79. 

Sources: Chicago Sun-Times and CBS Chicago

(Unidentified and undated image of Ms. Black from her Facebook page.)

Celina y Reutilio, “¡Que viva Changó!” 1949. Ned Sublette explains its significance:

At that time [the 1940s], the country music of Cuba was off in a corner by itself, apart from the rest of the Cuban musical scene, with little African influence, at a time when Cubans wanted to dance. Celina and Reutilio brought it into the fold…Santería in its various forms—from the most purely African to the most syncretized, mixed, spiritist form—was a widespread religion of the people, [B]lack and white, and everybody knew that Santa Bárbara meant Changó. But nobody had ever mentioned both of them together in a popular song. It was another restriction lifted.

meamanu:

Virginia history: On August 21, 1831 Nat Turner led an uprising of enslaved people in Southampton County, Virginia. In the immediate aftermath, across Virginia, North Carolina, and other southern states, vigilante murders by White militias and mobs killed hundreds of Black people and state legislators passed new laws prohibiting education of slaves and free Blacks, restricting rights of assembly and other civil rights for free Blacks, and requiring White ministers to be present at Black religious services.

"Backstage at the Evisu Ball, Manhattan, 2010," by Gerard H. Gaskin. In Legendary: Inside the House Ballroom Scene,

Gerard H. Gaskin’s radiant color and black-and-white photographs take us inside the culture of house balls, underground events where gay and transgender men and women, mostly African American and Latino, come together to see and be seen. At balls, high-spirited late-night pageants, members of particular “houses”—the House of Blahnik, the House of Xtravaganza—”walk,” competing for trophies in categories based on costume, attitude, dance moves, and “realness.” In this exuberant world of artistry and self-fashioning, people often marginalized for being who they are can flaunt and celebrate their most vibrant, spectacular selves.

From the quiet backstage, to the shimmering energies of the runway. to the electricity of the crowd, Gaskin’s photographs take us to the ball. Legendary, comprised of photos taken at events in the New York city area, Philadelphia, Richmond, and Washington, D.C., is a collaboration between Gaskin, a camera-laden outsider who has been attending balls for twenty years, and the house members who let him enter the intimate world of ball culture…

"Backstage at the Evisu Ball, Manhattan, 2010," by Gerard H. Gaskin. In Legendary: Inside the House Ballroom Scene,

Gerard H. Gaskin’s radiant color and black-and-white photographs take us inside the culture of house balls, underground events where gay and transgender men and women, mostly African American and Latino, come together to see and be seen. At balls, high-spirited late-night pageants, members of particular “houses”—the House of Blahnik, the House of Xtravaganza—”walk,” competing for trophies in categories based on costume, attitude, dance moves, and “realness.” In this exuberant world of artistry and self-fashioning, people often marginalized for being who they are can flaunt and celebrate their most vibrant, spectacular selves.

From the quiet backstage, to the shimmering energies of the runway. to the electricity of the crowd, Gaskin’s photographs take us to the ball. Legendary, comprised of photos taken at events in the New York city area, Philadelphia, Richmond, and Washington, D.C., is a collaboration between Gaskin, a camera-laden outsider who has been attending balls for twenty years, and the house members who let him enter the intimate world of ball culture…