Great Migration "Promise Land"

Karlee Kirking

The movement of African Americans out of the rural Southern United States to the Northeast, Midwest, and West

  • The Great Migration occurred between 1910 and 1970. By the end of the second Great Migration (which many classify as the years 1940-1970), nearly 6 million African Americans had moved from the rural south to northern industrial cities.

  • The migration of African Americans to the north led to the rapid growth of Midwestern cities like Chicago and St. Louis, and Northern cities like Philadelphia and Baltimore.

  • The primary push factors for migration were segregation, the widespread violence of lynching, and lack of opportunities in the South. The Great Migration, and the educational and professional opportunities it afforded, led to the rise of a black middle class.

  • The rapid movement of African Americans to urban areas led to tension and competition for housing and jobs, especially with new European immigrants.

  • African Americans faced racial discrimination in the urban north, particularly when looking for housing

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The Great Migration