Don’t miss this opportunity to hear legendary 100-year-old civil rights activist and historian Timuel Black discuss his new book, Sacred Ground: The Chicago Streets of Timuel Black.
Sacred Ground opens in 1919, during the summer of the Chicago race riot, when infant Black and his family arrive in Chicago from Birmingham, Alabama, as part of the first Great Migration. He recounts in vivid detail his childhood and education in the Black Metropolis of Bronzeville and South Side neighborhoods that make up his “sacred ground.” Revealing a priceless trove of experiences, memories, ideas, and opinions, Black describes how it felt to belong to this place, even when stationed in Europe during World War II. He relates how African American soldiers experienced challenges and conflicts during the war, illuminating how these struggles foreshadowed the civil rights movement. A labor organizer, educator, and activist, Black captures fascinating anecdotes and vignettes of meeting with famous figures of the times, such as Duke Ellington and Martin Luther King Jr., but also with unheralded people whose lives convey lessons about striving, uplift, and personal integrity.
Bart Schultz, editor of the book, will talk with Black about his life and the stories recounted in the book.
Timuel D. Black, Jr. has spent his life furthering the cause of social justice, and his two volumes of oral histories, Bridges of Memory: Chicago’s First Wave of Black Migration and Bridges of Memory: Chicago’s Second Generation of Black Migration, published by Northwestern University Press, chronicle black Chicago history from the 1920s to the present. Bart Schultz is a senior lecturer in humanities and director of the Civic Knowledge Project at the University of Chicago. He is the author of many works, including Henry Sidgwick: Eye of the Universe.