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Word Count: 2,469
James Baldwin stated in Fifth Avenue Uptown I once tried to describe to a very well known American intellectual the conditions among Negroes in the South My recital disturbed him and made him indignant and he asked me in perfect innocence Why dont all the Negroes in the South move North I tried to explain what has happened unfailingly whenever a significant body of Negroes move North They do not escape Jim Crow legal segregation they merely encounter another not-less-deadly variety They do not move to Chicago they move to the South Side they do not move to New York they move to Harlem The pressure within the ghetto causes the ghetto walls to expand and this expansion is always violent One day to everyones astonishment someone drops a match in the powder keg and everything blows up Before the dust has settled or the blood congealed editorials speeches and civil-rights commissions are loud in the land demanding to know what happened What happened is that Negroes want to be treated like men Throughout the 20th century African-Americans migrated from the plantations of the South to the industrialized cities of the North The reasons for the migration are plenty and the consequences of the move brought many changes to the city Black migration in the twenties drew on areas of the south that had previously sent few people to the north Seaboard states of the Upper South especially Virginia and the Carolinas continued to be the main sources of the black migrants into ghettos of the North Before the Civil War blacks were owned as slaves and worked the cotton fields of the southern plantations After the Civil War the slaves were freed but continued to live on the plantations by means of share cropping because it was the only work they knew and the only work available Ex-slave owners would build houses on their property and give ex-slaves a plot of land some
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