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McHistory: Bloomington-Normal Under Jim Crow Law

Image of Lue Anna Brown Sanders Clark

In the era of Jim Crow laws, enforced racial segregation kept blacks and whites separate at restaurants, in bathrooms, and in education.

While black students could attend Illinois State University in the early to mid 1900s, they couldn't eat or sleep near their white classmates. They had to rely on residents for room and board.

For Black History month, GLT is reviving its occasional series McHistory in partnership with the McLean County Museum of History. GLT’s Mary Cullen produced the series. You’ll hear the voices of Bill Kemp and Divah Griffin, with the museum.

In this episode, we hear about a Bloomington resident who ran a boarding house for black Illinois State University students.


Bill Kemp

Bill Kemp

Bill Kemp is the Librarian at the McLean County Museum of History


Deanna Morton10/26/21 4:44am

I recall some stories from mid sixties on W. Washington St. Business area was like a small town unto itself. Everyone friendly.

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