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Chicago's 1919 Race Riots

A race riot rocked Chicago's south side in the summer of 1919, leaving 38 dead, more than 500 injured, and many more homeless. The conflict was sparked by the killing of a black teenager at the 26th Street beach--but racial tension had been brewing in Chicago for years. "Chicago's 1919 Race Riots" puts the riot in the context of post-WWI Chicago, and then re-creates the riot itself, using rare photographs. Following the documentary John Callaway interviews African-American journalist and historian Vernon Jarrett about the lasting impact of the riot.

Explore original sources
Read selections of the Chicago Commission on Race Relations report.

Read the coroner's report.

For More Information
Learn about the role of gangs in the 1919 race riot.

Meet Vernon Jarrett.

Read "Race Riot: Chicago in the Red Summer of 1919" by William M. Tuttle, Jr.

Visit the DuSable Museum of African-American History.

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