The Northeastern United States—home to abolitionism and a refuge for blacks fleeing the Jim Crow South—has had a long and celebrated history of racial equality and political liberalism. After World War II, the region appeared poised to continue this legacy, electing black politicians and rallying behind black athletes and cultural leaders. However, as historian Jason Sokol reveals in All Eyes Are Upon Us, these achievements obscured the harsh reality of a region driven by segregation and deep-seated racism.
All month we've been learning about the NEH film series, Created Equal. One of those films, The Abolitionists tells the story of the struggle to end slavery. This week, we'll learn how this struggle played out locally and why it still matters today.