Roll of Thunder Hear Me Cry Madison allen period 5

Jim Crow laws


Blacks were not allowed to vote.

If blacks wanted to vote they must take a literacy test. These tests were for keeping poor whites and black people from voting. If you pass the test you still don't get to vote. Now you must pay a poll tax. Back then most African Americans couldn't afford it, and wouldn't be able to take the test. If you can pay the poll tax next you would have to get transportation to where the voting booth would be. A rumor goes around close to election saying if any blacks are to be driving on Election Day they would get arrested and have to stay in jail until polls close. Lastly all blacks would have to get through teh county sheriff. He would have to be impressed with how far you've came and your impression. When most blacks got to this stage the county sheriff would point his revolver at you and tell you today isn't a good day for you to cast your ballot. If you tried to vote he would kill you.


Blacks were not allowed to eat with white people.

If blacks and whites were to eat together a partition or curtain was to be placed in between them. Also whites were to be served first. Lots of restaurants would only serve to white trade. This meant they only served to white people and blacks weren't allowed to enter. If a restaurant were to serve both whites and black, there would be two separate doors. One for the white people and one fro the black people.

The Great Depression

The Great Depression was an economic downturn in the United States during the 1920s and 1930s. The Great Depression started after the stock market crash in 1929. Millions of Ammericans were left unemployed. During the same time there happened to be a horrible drought in the country causing people to stop farming. When the drought happened America was under the name of "Dust Bowl" In Roll of Thunder, Hear Me Cry the Logans "man of the house" is gone, Big Ma's husband and the Logan kids father. He works on the rail roads in Mississippi to get money. He uses the money to keep their acres of land, the cotton field.

These photos show a man working in the cotton fields during the Great Depression, people waiting in crowds to get food, a privileged group of white kids, and white and black men in a boat representing world money issues during the Great Depression.

Abolishment of Slavery

Slavery was a very miserable thing for the lives of the black people during the Great Depression. Having to work in fields all day and being forced to work for other people was not fun. When slavery ended it was such a relief for all the African Americans. Abraham Lincoln the 16th president of the United States of America tried putting a stop to slavery in america. He completed his mission and slavery ended. In "The Emancipation Proclamation" Abraham states that he is ending slavery and with that the African Americans could work or have labor if the wanted to and get paid reasonable wages. But this time working wasn't forced upon those of who were African Americans. Lincolns speech recalls this "And I hereby call upon the people so declared to be free to abstain from all violence, unless in necessary self-defense; and I recommend to them that, in all cases when allowed, they labor faithfully for reasonable wages." This line from his speech to end slavery also explains how Lincoln was trying to say that people who were no longer going to be slaves weren't allowed to be abused any more. Even after slavery ended African Americans still had trouble getting along with whites. White people still treated African Americans differently. In Roll of Thunder, Hear Me Cry Mama says to Cassie, “But their grandparents were born in Africa, and when they came there were some white people who thought that it was wrong for any people to be slaves; so the people who needed slaves to work in their fields and the people who were making money bringing slaves from Africa preached that black people weren’t really people like white people were, so slavery was all right." (Taylor 190). Even then those who were white and needed slaves to do the heavy labor for them they would keep their slaves.

"Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction." -The Thirteenth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America


Lyching was a painful punishment done to those who were African Americans who committed a crime or for being assumed of one. Lynching was when one was accused for a crime but doesn't get a fair trial to plead guilty. In Roll of Thunder, Hear Me Cry a black man named Mr, Berry is accused for touching a white women inappropriately but didn't. Without a trial Mr. Berry was nearly burned to death. He got burned so badly that he can't speak no he is paralyzed. The following quote is from the novel and describes how Mr. Berry looks. “The face had no nose, and the head no hair; the skin was scarred, burned, and the lips were wizened black, like charcoal." (Taylor 150)


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