DuSable to Obama: Video
Clips from the show
Adam Green, professor of American history, explains why residents of Bronzeville, who lived in the neighborhood during its heyday, remember the area with profound pride and deep fondness.
Former politician Carol Moseley-Braun describes getting to know Fred Hampton during their college years.
AfriCOBRA is a collective of African American visual artists which started in Chicago in 1968 to explore and define the black visual aesthetic. In this web exclusive video, AfriCOBRA members, Napoleon Jones-Henderson and Barbara Jones-Hogu, describe the artistic philosophy of the group.
Former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley-Braun calls Obama's election a transformational moment in American history.
Marketing communications pioneer Tom Burrell is credited with revolutionizing the image of African Americans in television. This montage of Burrell's historic commercials dates from the 1970s through the 1990s.
Lerone Bennett tells the story of how John Johnson became a master of disguise to purchase office buildings from white owners.
Johns Rogers, investor and business executive, remembers what it was like the night Barack Obama won the Iowa caucuses in the 2008 race for the Democratic presidential nomination.
Susan Cayton Woodson remembers the thrill of arriving in Bronzeville for the first time after a cross-country road trip with Gene Coleman and renowned singer and actor Paul Robeson.
Reginald Robinson, well known ragtime pianist, plays "Heliotrope Bouquet" by ragtime composer Scott Joplin.
Pioneering aviatrix Bessie Coleman becomes the first, licensed African American pilot and returns to America as a celebrity. Excerpt from the WTTW documentary, "Chicago Stories: Bessie Coleman."
The story behind the killing of Black Panther leader Fred Hampton from Chicago Stories: Fred Hampton.
Noted historian and author Dr. Christopher Reed explains the importance of black speakers at the World's Fair.
Dr. Christopher Reed, author of "All The World is Here: The Black Presence at White City," discusses black workers at the World's Fair.
Four of Chicago's most celebrated African-American stage artists engage in a spirited and revealing conversation on contemporary black theater. (Screen left to right) Ron OJ Parson, Abena Joan P. Brown, Chuck Smith, and Jackie Taylor, take part in this timely and insightful discussion.
Known fondly as the "Queen of the Blues," Koko Taylor began singing in Chicago blues clubs in the 1950s. Her gritty, powerful voice attracted the attention of Willie Dixon, another famous Chicago blues icon and record producer. Her recording of Dixon's "Wang Dang Doodle" topped the R&B charts in 1966.
Former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley-Braun describes how Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and the Warren Court changed the direction of her life and opened the door for her political future.
Former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley-Braun fondly remembers Harold Washington and tells stories about his time in office.
Former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley-Braun tells the story of how abolitionist Dr. Richard Eells helped a runaway slave escape and was subsequently prosecuted under the Fugitive Slave Act. Braun also reveals an unexpected, personal connection to the case.
Grammy Award-winning singer and Chicago native Chaka Kahn talks about performing with her first musical group, The Crystalettes.
R &B music superstar Chaka Kahn recalls her friend Fred Hampton and her participation in the Black Power movement.
Multi-platinum recording artist Chaka Kahn recalls how, as a young singer, she told legendary singer/songwriter Stevie Wonder that she wanted a different song than the one he offered her. Wonder wrote a new one and "Tell me Something Good," became a Top 10 hit.
Grammy Award-winner Chaka Kahn talks about her early days performing and her life-changing decision to join the local Chicago band, Rufus.
Artist and educator Margaret Burroughs reads her essay on the wild frontier in which DuSable lived.
Lerone Bennett, an author and noted historian, exposes Chicago's best kept secret.
Marie Smith describes the unwavering determination of her aunt, Annie Oliver, and the women of the DeSaible Memorial Society.
Soul singer and politician Jerry Butler weighs in on the question, "Did the blues change in Chicago?"
Attorney Jeffrey Haas, author of "The Assassination of Fred Hampton: How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther," and Bill Hampton, brother of Fred Hampton, are interviewed on Chicago Tonight in 2009.
Journalist Monroe Anderson recalls how he learned not to count Obama out in seemingly impossible elections.
Dr. Margaret Burroughs, co-founder of the South Side Community Center, talks about the center's early years.
Dr. Margaret Burroughs talks about the genesis of the DuSable Museum.
Politician Jerry Butler says that Barack Obama, the man, should not be thought of as a movement.
Soul music pioneer Jerry Butler explains how and why many musicians got involved in the civil rights movement.
Cook County Commissioner Jerry "Iceman" Butler recalls what made Washington special to voters.
As a young child, Hip Hop poet J. Ivy was inspired by the eloquence of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Multibillion-dollar money manager John Rogers describes the rich history of African American entrepreneurs in Chicago.
Author and social historian, Lerone Bennett, talks about how Dr. King had to develop new tactics to confront northern racism.
Rev. Jesse Jackson describes the many victories of the Chicago Freedom Movement.
Versatile vocalist Lalah Hathaway, daughter of soul singer Donny Hathaway talks about Chicago style soul music.
Legendary DJ Frankie Knuckles tells the history of The Warehouse, an underground nightclub where he created the Chicago house sound.
Chicago Tonight coverage of the true Chicago story behind Lorraine Hansberry's play "A Raisin in the Sun."
Artist Marion Perkins's son, Useni Perkins, and Useni's daughter, Julia Perkins, describe the sculptor's life, explore his beliefs, and celebrate his art.
Journalist Monroe Anderson explains how African American reporters may become pigeonholed into writing about the black community.
Civil rights leader Rev. Jesse Jackson was caught on camera weeping during President-elect Obama's victory speech. In this web exclusive he describes why he was overcome with emotion.
Patti LaBelle sings a rousing gospel song in the spirit of Thomas Dorsey's music at Chicago's Quinn Chapel as part of WTTW's 1990 program Going Home to Gospel.
Artist and community leader Margaret Burroughs shares her memories of coming to Chicago with her family during the Great Migration.
Dr. Christopher Reed, a recognized authority on Chicago's African American history, talks about DuSable's French and entrepreneurial influence.
Produced by Barbara E. Allen and Daniel Andries; Written by Gail F. Baker, Ph.D., Barbara E. Allen, and Daniel Andries; Hosted by Kellita Smith; Music Composed by Orbert Davis; Camera: Tim Boyd; Editor: Barbara E. Allen.
Includes: Jean Baptiste DuSable, the "Founding Father" of Chicago; slavery in Illinois; the Old Settlers; the Pullman Porters; the The Great Fire; and World's Fair 1893.
Includes: Dawson's Black Machine; Johnson Publishing; Durham's "Destination Freedom"; Emmett Till; DuSable Museum; The Woodlawn Organization; Dr. King's Chicago Crusade; AfriCOBRA; the 1968 Riots and more...
Includes: the "Chicago Defender;" Jazz and Blues music; the Policy Kings; the Great Migration; Black Business development; the Race Riot of 1919; Dorsey's Gospel; the Black Renaissance; the Black Aviators and more...
Lerone Bennett, social historian and longtime Ebony editor, explains that seeing African Americans in every day life was a central theme of Ebony Magazine.
Frankie Knuckles, pioneering house music DJ, answers the question, "What is house music?" and describes the Chicago house sound.
Chicago Tonight reports on the 2007 dedication of a Chicago park in honor of Gwendolyn Brooks, one of the city's most beloved and acclaimed poets.
Fast paced fun: The story behind the Globetrotters' unique style of basketball excerpted from WTTW's Chicago Stories: Harlem Globetrotters.
Pioneering Hip Hop poet J. Ivy is a Chicago original. The Grammy Award-winning artist explains how the Windy City influences every aspect of his work.
Well known theater, television, and film actor Harry Lennix talks about the development of black theater in Chicago.
Legendary singer Chaka Kahn expresses her delight in how Obama's election has changed our long held, public beliefs.
Former U.S. Senator Carol Moseley-Braun describes her experience as a young girl in 1966 marching with Dr. King through Gage Park in Chicago.
Robert "Bobby" Sengstacke calls himself a "painter with a camera." In this 2008 "Chicago Tonight" segment, meet this legendary photographer who captured the lives of African Americans during the civil rights era.
A glimpse into the history of the Pullman porters excerpted from WTTW's "Chicago Stories: Pullman Porters."
Rev. Jesse Jackson describes how leaders in the black community convinced Harold Washington to run for mayor and how his campaign is irrefutably linked to the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King's 1966 Chicago Freedom Movement.
Glennette Tilley Turner, an expert on Illinois' Underground Railroad, talks about slavery in the salt mines of Equality, Illinois.
Chicago born actor Stan Shaw shares his memories about the Black Panther Party and suggests that fear of the unfamiliar drove the plot to murder Fred Hampton.
Actor Stan Shaw talks about his musical family -- his father, noted blues saxophonist Eddie Shaw, and his brother, guitarist Eddie "Vaan" Shaw Jr. -- and shares memories of hanging out at his father's club.
Film and television actor Stan Shaw tells stories about growing up on the West Side of Chicago in the 1960s.
Native Chicagoan, Stan Shaw, who appeared in the 1979 miniseries "Roots: The Next Generations," recalls what is was like to film the breakthrough series.
Poet, essayist, and publisher Haki Madhubuti describes the formation of the Black Arts movement.
Author and historian Glennette Tilley Turner describes the harsh restrictions of the black codes.
Robert Abbot, publisher of the "Chicago Defender," found ingenious ways to deliver the paper to southern states that had banned it. Excerpt from WTTW's documentary, "The Paper Trail."
Noted author and historian, Timuel Black, describes the African American community's reaction to Till's Lynching.
Tom Burrell explains how the "Black is Beautiful" movement inspired him to bring positive images of blacks into advertising.
Civil rights leader Jesse Jackson explains how the legacy of racism affects the progress of African Americans.
Historian Dr. Christopher Reed discusses the conditions in the black community in the late 1800s and the need for a hospital to serve the people living there.
Noted author and social historian Lerone Bennett explains that despite Obama's election there is still work to be done to achieve racial parity in the United States.
Tom Burrell tells why negative images of African Americans today are more damaging than those from earlier generations.
Black aviation historian Tyrone Haymore reveals the personalities of John Robinson and Cornelius Coffey and describes their coincidental first meeting.
Tom Burrell recalls why corporate advertisers were fearful that blacks in television commercials would turn off white viewers.
Noted historian Dr. Christopher Reed explains why blacks headed north during the Great Migration.
Lerone Bennett, a 50 year veteran of Ebony's editorial staff, describes how Johnson's success was in creating a picture magazine in which blacks could see themselves and read articles written from their perspective.
The Globetrotters put clowning aside to beat the champion Minneapolis Lakers in a 1948 exhibition showdown.
Includes: the death of a Black Panther; John White Pictures the 70's; Soul Train; Advertising Black Pride; Chicago's Black Theater; Jesse Jackson; the Nation of Islam; Harold Washington; Carol Moseley-Braun; and Barack Obama.
Businessman and civic leader John Rogers reflects on the work of Dr. Martin Luther King and its strong relevancy today.