«Black Tides: How World War II Transformed the Racial Geography of Alameda, California»
World War II transformed the Pacific Coast cities of the United States. The second World War ushered in what some historians call the “Second Great Migration,” as five million African Americans migrated from southern states.
Before the war, less than 300 Black people called Alameda home. Before the war ended, over 6,000 resided on the island, predominantly segregated within wartime housing projects on the West End. As the projects were demolished for other industrial and residential uses in the 1950s and 1960s, Black residents protested their massive displacement. By 1970, the majority of the projects were gone. Due to rampant social prejudice and housing discrimination, most of the Black population that migrated to Alameda during and after the war were forced from Alameda.
Using government documents, newspaper accounts, and oral histories, this presentation demonstrates how race and conflicts over housing transformed the racial geography of the City of Alameda during and after the war.
The 2018 Black History Month Theme is “African Americans in Times of War.”
This presentation will be shared by Rasheed Shabazz, journalist, photographer, and educator. He received his Bachelors in African American Studies and Political Science, with a minor in City and Regional Planning from UC Berkeley. He participated in the Vévé Clark Institute for Engaged Scholars and the Ronald McNair Scholars program at Cal, before a one-year Visiting Scholar appointment. He is currently editing and revising his undergraduate honors thesis, a history of African Americans in Alameda told through the experiences of housing discrimination, as a book project. He attended Longfellow, Chipman, and Encinal schools, and College of Alameda.
This FREE event is sponsored by the Alameda Free Library, 1550 Oak St, at the corner of Lincoln Ave. The library is ADA accessible and can be reached by AC Transit Bus lines No. 51, O, and is near Lines 20 and 21.
Doors open at 5:45PM. Presentation begins at 6PM, followed by Q & A and discussion.