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American Pogrom: The East St. Louis Race Riot and Black by Charles Lumpkins

By Charles Lumpkins

On July 2 and three, 1917, race riots rocked the small commercial urban of East St. Louis, Illinois. American Pogrom takes the reader past that pivotal time within the city’s historical past to discover black people’s activism from the antebellum period to the eve of the post–World struggle II civil rights movement.

Charles Lumpkins exhibits that black citizens of East St. Louis had engaged in formal politics because the 1870s, exerting impact throughout the poll and during patronage in a urban ruled through robust genuine property pursuits at the same time many African americans in different places skilled setbacks in workout their political and fiscal rights.

While Lumpkins asserts that the race riots have been a pogrom—an equipped bloodbath of a selected ethnic group—orchestrated by way of sure businessmen purpose on fighting black citizens from reaching political strength and on turning the town right into a “sundown” city completely cleared of African american citizens, he additionally demonstrates how the African American group survived. He situates the actions of the black electorate of East St. Louis within the context of the bigger tale of the African American quest for freedom, citizenship, and equality.

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American Pogrom: The East St. Louis Race Riot and Black Politics

On July 2 and three, 1917, race riots rocked the small business urban of East St. Louis, Illinois. American Pogrom takes the reader past that pivotal time within the city’s background to discover black people’s activism from the antebellum period to the eve of the post–World struggle II civil rights move. Charles Lumpkins exhibits that black citizens of East St.

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Louis-Chicago rivalry in hopes of propelling East St. Louis into industrially outdistancing St. Louis. They had to be aware that during the s and s, economic leadership of midwestern cities had shifted from St. Louis to Chicago, for several reasons. First, an influential group of St. 1-108 6/13/08 4:35 PM Page 23 on rail connections to populous, industrializing cities in the Northeast. Second, some eastern financiers, worrying that national politics over slavery made the business climate in the s in St.

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Louisan businessmen thought their city had the opportunity to surpass St. Louis economically, especially after East St. Louis became the terminus of rail traffic for St. Louis. No bridge spanned the Mississippi River at St. Louis until , when the Eads Bridge was constructed. City boosters took advantage of the St. Louis-Chicago rivalry in hopes of propelling East St. Louis into industrially outdistancing St. Louis. They had to be aware that during the s and s, economic leadership of midwestern cities had shifted from St.

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