Jim Crow era By, Nick toland

Political problems during the Jim Crow era

Black citizens had to take literacy test to vote

Literacy test

One thing in the Jim Crow era that made political side of African Americans life hard was voting. Voting is an amazing thing to have it allows the people to decide who will keep them safe and give them that power. In Jim Crow when African Americans would try to vote their were lots of restraints such as a literacy test. The literacy test were hard to past and stopped many African Americans from voting. The test for white people they could get one or two questions wrong they would still be able to vote where aaa if your African American and get one question wrong you cannot vote. This stooped many from voting during this time. According to freerepublic.com "Literacy tests required a voter to demonstrate a certain level of learning proficiency before he could vote. In some cases, the test was 20 pages long for blacks, and those administering the tests were white Democrats who nearly always ruled that blacks were illiterate. In Alabama, the test included questions such as, “Where do presidential electors cast ballots for president?” “Name the rights a person has after he has been indicted by a grand jury. Democrats required blacks to have an above average education before they could vote but then simultaneously opposed black education and even worked with the Ku Klux Klan to burn down schools attended by blacks". Clearly, they did not intend for blacks to vote

Poll taxes

Blacks had to pay a tax to vote

The second politically problem for African American voters was voting tax. This was very hard for African Americans because they were little ways that African Americans could make or have money because most jobs would go to whites. These people had to pay almost their life savings to vote on anything. Lots of African Americans couldn't afford to pay that and be able to have food and shelter. This stopped even more from voting and made white people be able to decide on who will be senator or other things.

Laws that helped prevent blacks voting

Police were putting laws in place to not allow blacks to drive cars around voting times

Another thing that made having a spot in voting and other political things is laws. When votes were coming up their would be laws in place saying that African Americans caught driving will be arrested after all that happened with the tax and the test. These laws would throw determined people trying to vote into jail for trying to vote for a person who is going to help protect him and other people in his state or town. Even if you do manage to have transportation, the police and sheriff will kill you before you get to vote which makes it very scary to want to even try to vote because you are risking death. According to freerepulblic.com "Black Codes (later called Jim Crow laws) restricted the freedoms and economic opportunities of blacks. For example, in the four years from 1865-1869, southern Democrats passed “Black Codes” to prohibit blacks from voting, holding office, owning property, entering towns without permission, serving on juries, or racially intermarrying." Because of how African Americans were tried to be stopped from being able to vote, we can look at this with compassion and try to use this as something that can help us to see that everyone is equal.

Economic status of African Americans

Jobs that African Americans had


One economic problem for blacks, during the Jim Crow era was education. Education was very rare to see in a black man or woman. At ages 18-21 only 6.8% of black men attended school. None of them could get successful jobs and they couldn't read and write. This causes problems when they would try to get jobs to help their families like moms or fathers. They would have to end up working for white people in their successful jobs. For white men at ages 6-13 79% of them go to school where it is 37% for black men. Also at ages 14-17 it is almost doubled for whites at 49% where blacks come in at 26%. This again goes with black women, because of the limited black women with an education women would have to stay home and clean and help out their own house or other people's houses.

Regions of residence


Another economical problem was housing. Black people had no places to go during the Jim Crow era which caused many problems. In the south all blacks lived with other people, only little to no blacks lived with their own families around. According to eh.net 75% of blacks in the south lived in a rural shared household. This made disease and other problems more often than before

African Americans in north

Lastly, the economic status wasn't all bad some made it to the north and could find jobs and other things. According to EH " The President issued orders in 1941 that companies doing war-related work had to hire in a non-discriminatory way, and the Fair Employment Practice Committee was created to monitor the hiring practices of these companies. Initially, few resources were devoted to this effort, but in 1943 the government began to enforce fair employment policies more aggressively. These efforts appear to have aided black employment, at least for the duration of the war." By having all these blacks being allowed to help this help blacks in the north to be able to help transportive other blacks from the south up to the north and find more jobs. Because of what we learned about how life was for African Americans, if we look with compassion we can try to make other people's lives better by encouraging growth and helping out,

Culture and society



One thing that showed how black people were shown in culture and society was entertainment and shows put on, like movies but with live actors in person. What made these shows show black with stereotypes and other things was known as blackface. During the Jim Crow time black people couldn't even be actors because no one would go to the shows. This leads to a thing called blackface. Blackface was a very dark paint that white actors would paint their faces dark. According to blackpast.Com "Blackface makeup was either a layer of burnt cork on a layer of coca butter or black grease paint. In the early years exaggerated red lips were painted around their mouths, like those of today's circus clowns. In later years the lips were usually painted white or unpainted. Costumes were usually gaudy combinations of formal wear; swallowtail coats, striped trousers, and top hats". In 2009, A.C. Nielsen Company reported that 99% of all households owned at least 1 television and 66% of U.S. homes owned 3 or more televisions. Data also revealed that 79% of Americans believed that television violence aided to increase societal violence. For that matter, the content that is projected through the medium of television is crucial, due to the fact that the television is the central focus of many households. Evidence


A second thing that was very big for showing African Americans in society was carton shows. I'm sure that everyone has seen a cartoon and we know that they are funny. African Americans in geese cartoon shows were heavily stereotyped in these. They exaggerated their eyes, mouths, heads, skin and their food choices and others. When people see these in the shows they start to think that is how they are, some of these even are still around to this day. One of the clips in this video I thought was very stereotypical of African Americans was the one of the boy eating the watermelon. In this his eyes are very big, lips are super red, skin very dark, mouth is super big but, the main thing is that he is eating watermelon which is a very big stereotype that last to this day.

Some White people didnt want blacks To be able to Equal

How people made them seen

The final part of how culture of African Americans and how they were in society is making them seem dangerous. People would put up posters and signs saying hide your wife and protect your kids. According to penn state grad school "According to the theory, individuals who frequently watch high contents of television will begin to believe that they are living in a world similar to what is portrayed on the screen. Therefore, a person who watches numerous shows will believe that he/she is living in a world more dangerous than it actually is, large in part because their sense of crime becomes heightened. Nonetheless, the media portrays African Americans acting out and behaving in unflattering ways; thus, these stereotypes can become even more believable and allow members of other racial groups to see these characteristics as definite actions of African American people. Because of stereotypes and depictions of blacks in the 1940's we can try to not stereotype people because of their race and if we look with compassion we can put ourselves in their shoes and then decide to say it or not.

Here we see african americans being locked up or being locked to something like they are dangerous
Created By
Nick Toland


Created with images by Kheel Center, Cornell University Library - "Panel from Diego Rivera's mural at Unity House, depicting the growing conflict over slavery that eventually led to the Civil War. Also included are references to the Mexican War and the discovery of gold in California. Important figures include Henry Da"

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