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Chicago Metro History Education Center (Chicago, IL 60610-3305)
Lisa Oppenheim (Project Director: March 2011 to April 2016)
Erik Gellman (Co Project Director: July 2011 to April 2016)
Renaissance in the Black Metropolis: Chicago, 1930s-1950s

Two one-week Landmarks workshops for eighty school teachers on the Chicago Black Renaissance of the 1930s to 1950s.

"Renaissance in the Black Metropolis: Chicago, 1930s-1950s" consists of two one-week NEH Landmarks of American History and Culture Workshops held during summer 2012 for eighty school teachers on the Chicago Black Renaissance of the 1930s to 1950s. The workshops explore the cultural, social, economic, and political experience of Chicago's "Black Metropolis" and are led by Chicago Metro History Education Center's Lisa Oppenheim. NEH Summer Scholars learn about Great Depression Chicago and significant figures such as Margaret Burroughs, Charles White, Langston Hughes, John Johnson, Claude Barnett, Vivian Harsh, and St. Clair Drake. Historian Darlene Clark Hine (Northwestern University) leads off the scholarly program by setting out the context for and significance of the Chicago Black Renaissance. In a session at the Chicago Bee's former offices, Adam Green (University of Chicago) discusses the role of black journalism in the community. The South Side Community Art Center provides both site and subject for a lecture by Andrea Barnwell Brownlee (Spelman College Museum of Fine Art), followed by a visit to the DuSable Museum. Co-director Erik Gellman (Roosevelt University) and Lionel Kimble (Chicago State University) address labor and politics, with sites including the former United Packinghouse Workers union office and the Pullman Porters Museum, where participants learn about the predominantly African-American Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters. The end of the week features Jacqueline Goldsby (New York University) on literature, including writers Richard Wright, Lorraine Hansberry, and Gwendolyn Brooks; Davarian Baldwin (Trinity College) on the meaning of Chicago's music; and an extended afternoon of archival work at the Harsh Collection for AfroAmerican History and Culture.

[Grant products]

Project fields:
U.S. History

Landmarks of American History and Culture

Education Programs

$176,592 (approved)
$176,345 (awarded)

Grant period:
10/1/2011 – 12/31/2012