Posted Oct 12, 2018
We're excited to be hosting the Wisconsin Historical Society's display commemorating the 50th anniversary of Milwaukee's fair housing marches which fought for integration and equal access to housing for black citizens. The exhibit will be here until October 30.
The marches brought the national civil rights movement to a local level when Milwaukee city residents, both white and black, banded together to protest the city's policies and practices which perpetuated segregation. The Federal Fair Housing Act passed later in 1968.
On the last display panel, there is an image of a historical document that has an objectionable word on it. Because the Wisconsin Historical Society seeks to shed light on a dark piece of history, they left it as is as an accurate reflection of society in the time period represented. Neither the WHS nor Shorewood Public Library condone the use of this word.
Milwaukee County remains highly segregated.The final panel maps segregation historically and today. In the far southwest corner of the current map of the city, there is a grey area, surrounded by white areas, which indicates the population in that section of the county is 40-50% black. This is where the Milwaukee County House of Correction is.
It's vital to learn about our history to be reminded both of how far we have come, and how much further we have yet to go. If you enjoy the exhibit, we recommend these books:
- The Selma of the North: Civil Rights Insurgency in Milwaukee by Patrick D. Jones
- The Color of Law: A Forgotten History of How Our Government Segregated America by Richard Rothstein
- Live and Let Live: Diversity, Conflict and Community in an Integrated Neighborhood by Evelyn M. Perry
- Civil Rights Activism in Milwaukee: South Side Struggles in the '60s and '70s by Paul H. Greenen
- We Gon' Be Alright: Notes on Race and Resegregation by Jeff Chang
- There Goes the Neighborhood: How Communities Overcome Prejudice and Meet the Challenge of American Immigration by Ali Noorani