How far were the 1920s a time of racism and discrimination for Black Americans?
A time of racism:
- Hostility to immigrants: and the Red Scare’.
- American Government: refused to pass laws banning lynchings or giving Black Americans the vote.
- Jim Crow Laws: the name for laws passed in the southern states which prevented Black Americans from mixing with whites (‘segregation’), denied them equality of education and civil rights, and prevented them from voting.
- Ku Klux Klan: an organisation to maintain WASPs supremacy, which had 5 million members by 1925. Many supporters were poor whites, who did not want Black Americans to be their equals/fear they would take their jobs, but many were racism wealthy white Americans. They wore white sheets and hoods, and marched with burning crosses. They spoke with each other in a secret language which they called ‘Klonversations’. They attacked, tortured and killed Black Americans, but also Jews and Catholics and ‘immoral’ people such as alcoholics.
- Lynchings: mobs of white people often hanged (‘lynched’) Blacks Americans whom they suspected of a crime (usually the police turned a blind eye).
- Even in the north: Black Americans ended up with the low-paid menial jobs, such as janitors, bootblacks, cooks, houseboys, baggage handlers, waiters, doormen, dishwashers and washroom attendants. In 1919, white Americans in Chicago rampaged through Black neighbourhoods after a drowning black man clinging to a log had drifted into a whites-only
Worksheet Revision Notes:
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- Lesson revision notes on USA Race Relations in the 1920s
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