63 Boycott, a film exploring the 1963 campaign by CPS students, teachers and parents to desegregate Chicago schools has just launched a new interactive website to help connect filmmakers with participants in this historic movement. Check out the footage and stills, and if you do recognize any faces, be sure to get in touch.
Freedom Day Demonstration, 1963
Diversity has been “one of our fundamental principles,” says Brenda Krause Eheart, the University of Illinois professor and researcher who cofounded the community 18 years ago. “I think diversity helps us learn from each other.” When people from diverse backgrounds live together, “they become more tolerant of each other,” she says. “Tolerant isn’t quite the right word—people become friends, good neighbors.”
Don’t miss Bogira next Monday at Chicago: Segregated City, a rare screening of 3 Kartemquin films that confront Chicago’s legacy of racial segregation, along with a sneak preview of 63 Boycott, our in-progress film about the 1963 boycott of Chicago Public Schools by thousands of African American parents and students in response to Superintendant Benjamin Willis’s segregationist policies.
The parents who kept their kids home that October day in 1963 likely doubted that the schools would desegregate quickly. But I don’t think they could have imagined that school segregation would still be so pervasive here a half century later—that, for instance, nearly a third of the city’s schools would have not a single white student.
Historical Map: Chicago Plan Commission - Rapid Transit Facilities, 1945
Here’s a gorgeous pre-CTA planning map from Chicago in 1945, outlining all sorts of grandiose ideas for expansion of the subway system, almost none of which have actually come to pass. There appears to be a proposed second Loop, which would have run more east-west than the existing one. There’s also a planned subway line heading out to the northwest, but this doesn’t follow the same alignment as the Blue Line, and a subway line running along Belmont Avenue.
Have we been there? Yes.
What we like: Awesome old-school cartography at its finest. The shading to show the city limits is quite beautiful. The map looks gorgeous at larger sizes (click through to take a look!)
What we don’t like: Limited use of colour (almost certainly due to wartime austerity measures) does make some detail hard to make out. The blobs on the “L” lines don’t represent stations; it’s just the type of linework used to differentiate it from other lines, such as roads.
Our rating: A glimpse at what might have been, but never was. Fantastic! Four-and-a-half-stars.
(Source: Eric Fischer/Flickr)
FILM: The Last Pullman Car
Source: Flickr / walkingsf