During the period between 1930 and 1970 more than 17,000 migrants were drawn to Louisville, challenging us to rethink the centrality of rural to urban migration narratives during the era of the Second Great Migration. African American migration in Louisville, Kentucky demonstrates the necessity of recognizing the distinctiveness of the Second Great Migration as well as the need to turn our attention to Black mobility within the South. Between 1935-1940, the largest Southern cities witnessed an influx of Black population; many of these migrants originated in the urban, not rural South. That Kentucky's Black population was primarily urban stood in stark contrast with much of the South; however, Blacks in Tennessee, Alabama, Florida and North Carolina were also predominantly urban. Not only does examining urban to urban migration patterns offer a more complex view of African American migration, it also offers a more nuanced view of African American urbanization as a process. African American migration in Louisville, Kentucky challenges us to rethink the centrality of rural to urban migration narratives during the era of the Second Great Migration.
Journal Of Social History
Adams, Luther, ""Headed for Louisville": Rethinking Rural to Urban Migration in the South, 1930-1950" (2006). SIAS Faculty Publications. 1.