1. What strategies did realtors use to blockbust?
2. What is the difference between buying a house with a conventional mortgage and buying through an installment plan or contract?
3. What evidence was used to support the claim “that integration undermined property values”?
1. According to Rothstein, why should the IRS withhold tax exemptions from universities and churches?
2. What is ironic about churches and universities supporting restrictive covenants?
3. Why does reverse redlining and subprime loans hurt the African American community?
1. How was the Agua Caliente housing development blocked?
2. How did the white residents of Black Jack stop the development of a racially integrated complex?
3. How did the construction of I-95 in Miami affect the African- American community?
1. How did the whites respond when Wilbur Gary moved into Rollingwood in 1952?
2. How did the white neighbors respond when Bill and Daisy Myers bought a Levittown house in Bucks County?
3. How did the whites and police respond to Harvey Clark living in Cicero?
1. How did the Boilermakers treat union members differently?
2. In 2015, why did NYC’s sheet metal union pay out thirteen million in compensation
———- —- — … – – …
A COMMON EXPLANATION FOR de facto segregation is that most black families could not afford to live in predominantly
white middle-class communities and still are unable to do so. African
American isolation, the argument goes, reflects their low incomes,
not de jure segregation. Racial segregation will persist until more
African Americans improve their educations and then are able to
earn enough to move out of high-poverty neighborhoods.
The explanation at first seems valid. But we cannot understand
the income and wealth gap that persists between African Ameri-
cans and whites without examining governmental policies that pur-
posely kept black incomes low throughout most of the twentiet_h
century. Once government implemented these policies, econo~~c
d’ff · · ossible but 1t is 1 erences became self-perpetuating. It 1s not imp , . h
rar f . . h h’gher rank in t e e or Americans black or white, to ave a 1
nat’ 1 . ‘ h . Everyone’s stan-
iona income distribution than t eir parents. indi-
dard f 1 · . . eration, but an
. 0 1v1ng may grow from generation to gen . f others
vidual’ 1 . the incomes o
. s re at1ve income-how it compares to h his or her
in th k bl . ·1ar to ow e present generation-is remar a Y simi .
Pare , . h · eneratton.
nts incomes compared to others in t eir g
t of de;·ure residential segregation ha .
So an accoun . s to inc}
blic policy geographically separated Af . Ude 11 only how pu rtcan A 0t
h ‘tes but also how federal and state labor “lller·
cans rom w I . d .market I,
. . h ndisguised racial intent, epressed African A Polj_
c1es, wit u d h Cll} .
ddition some an per aps many local g er1can
wages. n a ‘ ·1 h . overnrn
. Americans more heav1 y t an whites. Th f ent8
taxe ncan e e f eq
ment actions were compounded because neighb s of these govern . . orh00 · ts elf imposed higher expenses on Af ncan A . d segregauon 1 . . lllerica
hite families, even 1f their wages and tax rates had b n t an on w . een
‘d · l The result: smaller disposable incomes and fewer s . 1 enuca . . . av1ngs
£ black families, denying them the opportunity to accumul
ror . . ‘ddl ate
wealth and contributing to make housing 1n m1 e-class commu-
If government purposely depressed the incomes of African
Americans, with the result that they were priced out of mainstream
housing markets, then these economic policies are also important
parts of the architecture of de jure segregation.
UNTIL LONG after emancipation from slavery, most African
Americans were denied access to free labor markets and were unable
to save from wages. This denial of access was another badge of slav-
ery that Congress was duty bound to eliminate, not to perpetuate.
Following the Civil War, and intensifying after Reconstruction,
a s~arecropping system of indentured servitude perpetuated aspects
of the slave system. After food and other living costs were deducted
from their earnings, sharecroppers typically owed plantation own-
ers more than their d L 1 · · e . wages ue. oca shenff s enforced this peonag ‘
preventmg sharecr f t . . oppers rom seeking work elsewhere, by arres –
mg, assaultmg or m d . h b cond · .
‘ ur enng t ose who attempted to leave, or Y
onmg v10 ence d In . perpetrate by owners.
many mstances Af .
and phony off ‘. ncan Americans were arrested for petty
enses (like va ‘f ff
work), and whe h grancy 1 they came to town when o
n t ey were un 61 a e to pay fines and court fees, war-
. mes sold prisoners to plantations .
Jlletl . . , rn1nes and f
Jetls so Blackmon, m his book Slavery by A h’ actories.
las d f not er Nam . Votlg from the en o Reconstruction unt’l w, I e, est1-
that . . 1 word W II
111ateS slaved m this way exceeded 100 0 M’ ar , the ber en , oo. ines o
11of11 S el alone used tens of thousands of 1. . perated V S te rnpnsoned Af bY ·. · The practice ebbed during World W II b . rican
ericans, f Ifill . ar ‘ ut tt Was , Afl’I that Congress u ed its Thirteenth A d n t
·1 1951 rnen rnent obi’
oJltl d explicitly outlawed the practice. 1-tion an .
ga African Amencans managed to escape to th N h
SoJ11C e Ort early
h twentieth century, yet others were forcibly pre d o t e . . vente or 1
‘d ted from domg so. But durmg World War I when .
·0wnt a , 1mm1gra-
1 f unskilled Europeans was sharply curtailed norther tion o . , n manu-
ers sent recrmters south. They frequently traveled in di’sgu· factur . 1se,
pretending, for e~ampl~, t~ be msurance salesmen, to avoid capture
by sheriffs. Dunng this time, more tha~ 600,000 African Ameri-
ans left the South, mostly to seek work m the North and Midwest.
~istorians call this the First Great Migration.
World War II then spurred the Second Great Migration, from
1940 to 1970, when more than four million African Americans made
the journey. Thus most African Americans could not begin to accu-
mulate capital for home purchases until fairly recently, well after
European immigrant groups were able to participate in the wage
economy. And when African Americans who left the South entered
a northern labor market, federal, state, and local governments col-
laborated with private employers to ensure that they were paid less
and treated worse than whites.
IN THE r93os, President Franklin D. Roosevelt could assemble the
congressional majorities he needed to adopt New Deal legislati~n
only by including southern Democrats, who were fiercely commit-
ted to wh’ · 1 s ‘t minimum tte supremacy. In consequence, Socia ecun Y,
Wage p · · 11 excluded f rotect1on, and the recognition of labor umons a .
rolll c A · predom1-overage occupations in which African mencans
THIS ._, …, , _ _ __ — – .. w
d d mestic service. State and local . lture an o I . h govern
naced: agncu_ I When for examp e, m t e mid-1930 S ‘nelt
d · m1lar Y· ‘ f Af · s t l s behave si d hospital or ncan America · Cli’
d a segregate . h. . n Pati Is
construcce . I black ule setter; w lte u nton Ill ents I · red a sing e ernbe ‘a
contractor 11 . fi d the contractor and announced · rs Pro.
d the city re tt Wo I
tested, an fi h t employed African American lab ll d n0 e any rm t a T A) or. longer us V lley Authority ( V segregated it
The Tennessee a . s ’11ork
II ·n housing. At construction proJ· ect A. ers h . b as we as t s, f .
on t e JO . ned to work separately, but only ‘f rican
Americans were ass1g . k f 11 I enou h
d d t particular sites to ma e up u crews. If g were nee e a d · d k · 1 no1 . A ricans were eme wor entire y. No A.f . ,
then African me d f rican
. permitted to be promote to oreman 0 Americans were . r other
. 1 in the TVA. The first national New De I supervisory ro es . d . . . a Pro.
h F deral Emergency Relief A mmistrat1on, adopt d . gram, t e e . d e 1n
d. ortionately spent its fun s on unemployed ’11h’ 1933, 1sprop . . . ites,
f I refused to permit African Americans to take any b requent y . . u1
the least skilled jobs, and even m those, paid them less than the
officially stipulated wage.
Similar policies later prevailed under the National Recovery
Administration (NRA), another New Deal agency established in
Roosevelt’s first year. It established industry-by-industry minimum
wages, maximum hours, and product prices. Codes routinely with-
held benefits from African Americans that white workers enjoyed.
In addition to agriculture and domestic service, the NRA did no1
cover subindustries and even individual factory types in whid
African Americans predominated. Canning, citrus packing, anc
cotton ginning were industrial, not agricultural jobs, but worker:
were usually African American, and so they were denied the NRA’:
wage and hours standards. The NRA took account of the lowe
cost of living in the South by setting lower wages in that region
In Delaware, 90 percent of fertilizer manufacturing workers weri
Afr~can ~merican; thus fertilizer plants were classified as “sout~
ern, while other factories in the state that hired whites were classi
fied as “northe ” h ‘ h · · · d . rn, ~o ig er minimum wages apphe , .
~he first mdustnal code that the administration negotiated w1tl
business leaders in 1933 increased minimum wages in the cottoi
. d try, resulting in price increases through h
·t in us ·1 1 h’ t e produc itt e . . ncluding reta1 c ot mg. But the agree b –
te hatJl, 1 . . . ment ypassed
ofl c h’ h African Americans predominated· cl .
ti . 11 1c . eaners, outside
)·obs l d yardmen. Of the 14,000 African Americans in th . d
an f h . b 1 ‘fi e in us-crews, held one o t ese JO c assi cations. The NAACP
0 000 k h N com-trY, I ‘ “for these wor ers t e RA meant increases of f
· ed f h’ rom 10
Platll ‘ nt in the cost o everyt mg they had to buy · . h ,~~a
to 4° P y in increased wages.”
. le penn . C
s1Il}he Civilian Conservation orps. (~CC) not only segregated
. l camps but allowed local policies that did not permi’t Af ·denua . n-
res1 ericans to enroll or restricted them to menial jobs in which
can Arn Id not develop the higher skills that the corps was meant to they cou h .
‘d Florida announced t at it would not accept African Amer-rovt e. . ” . .
5 while Texas officials declared that this work is for whites
ican ‘ h d 1 · · 1· f
1 ” Many other states a ong wa1tmg ists o eligible African
:;ricans because localities refused to allow the CCC to establish
camps to lodge them. Where the army set up segregated camps, it
did not permit African Americans to lead the units, assigning white
commanders instead. CCC sites usually had educational programs,
but army officers often refused to hire black teachers, leaving “edu-
cational adviser” positions vacant.
African American corps members were also rarely allowed to
upgrade to better-paying jobs like machine operators or clerks, even
if they’d had experience as civilians. The painter Jacob Lawrence
worked as a youth at Breeze Hill, a segregated camp for African
Americans about seventy miles northwest of New York City, where
,400 young men shoveled mud for a flood control project. Not one
could he promoted to a higher classification.
My father-in-law told how, in a white CCC camp, he claimed to
know how to type (although his skills were minimal), then quickly
learned t d f · · · h’ 1 k’ . 0 0 so a ter persuading a supervisor to give im a c er s
!06· Be was then able to send a few dollars back to his parents, help-
1ng to k h . . f 1.
h . eep t em and his younger brothers and sister rom oSmg t e1r ho Af . k h
t me. rican American youths who already new ow to Ype (o · ·
A r Were equally capable of faking it) had no such opportunities.
I necdot 1 · k f . h 1 t es 1 e these, multiplied tens of thousands o times, e P 0
. h different African American and whit
exp ain t e . e ec0
. . d ·ng the Depression and afterward. nolllic
uons uri · c0 tlq· l,
President Roosevelt signed the National L b N 193 , . . a orb
anting unions at construction sites .and fact . -lelatj
ct, gr ‘f h . or1es th %8
bargain with management i t e unions were su e rii>h to . . PPort d t
maJ·ority of workers. Labor organizations that gained h’ e by a
. h t is offi
ertification could negotiate contracts t at covered all ciaJ c . d . of a fi
mployees The original bill, propose by Senator Rob rn1_i8 . . . enw
of New York, had prohibited government certification of u a?ner
that did not grant African Americans membership and
ns . Workpl
rights. The American Federation of Labor (AFL) lobbied W: ace
to remove the claus~, and h_e did so. The enactment of the ~~’.
ner Act was accomplished with the knowledge that it sancti’ d g . one an
unconstitutional policy of legally empowenng unions that refused
to admit African Americans. For at least the next thirty years th
government protected the bargaining rights of unions that d~iJ
African Americans the privileges of membership or that segregated
them into janitorial and other lower-paid jobs.
ln some cases, newly certified unions used their collective bar-
gaining rights to force companies to fire African Americans who
had been employed before unionization, and the National Labor
Relations Board (NLRB), the agency delegated to administer the
act, did nothing in response. In New York, for example, the NLRB-
certified Building Service Employees Union forced Manhattan
hotels, restaurants, and of fices to fire African American elevator
operators and restaurant workers and then give the jobs to whites.
TH~ GOVERN~ENT’s participation in blocking Africa~ jf,ct
cans wage-earnmg opportunities had its most devastating
r Suppressed Incomes 159
‘”‘ rid War II, when black workers . . wo migrated ·
JtJrlpg d ction in search of jobs. The Roo l to centers of
ro u seve t ad min. . .
1ar P d f ctories to convert from civilian t .1.
· e a O m1 1tary d
,eqiur and navy effectively operated shipbu’ld’ pro Uction.
h arJ1lY · f d 1 tng yards f e kers and aircra t an tank manufacture Yi f ‘ muni-
. os ma , d d d . . rs. et ederal age
ttO h tolerate an supporte Joint managem . n-
. bot . ent-union I’ .
c1es African Americans from doing any but th po ic1es
kept e most p l that · defense plants. 00r Y id tasks in .
pa ts in the San Francisco Bay Area, where All . d
Even _ . en an Frank
on sought work dunng the war, were typical Th . .
Stevens . . . . · e region
h largest center of war-related sh1pbu1lding 10 the t’ Th was t e . . na ion. e
. Laborers Union, which had seven members in 1Jarine . 1941, grew
Ore than 30,000 dunng the next few years. The Steamfi to Ill . tters
union membership soared from 400 to 17,000. Unions like these had
NLRB-certified agreement_s that companies could not hire without
a union referral, and the unions would not refer African Americans.
From 1941 to 1943, the Henry J. Kaiser Company built four
shipyards in Richmond with a capacity for 115,000 jobs. It could
not recruit enough white men for all of them, so it began to take
on white women. By 1944, women made up 27 percent of Kaiser’s
Richmond workforce. Then, with the supply of white women also
exhausted, Kaiser sent agents to the South to seek African Ameri-
can men. By war’s end, still short of workers, defense industries
opened some industrial jobs to African American women, who
were previously employed only as janitors, cafeteria workers, and
After four years of fierce conflict with union activists, Ford
Motor finally recognized the UAW as its workers’ representative in
941. Faced with a labor shortage that threatened its military con-
tracts, the company hired African Americans like Frank Stevenson.
Initially, Ford would not permit them to work in the higher-~aid
paint department, or as foremen, electricians, or in other skilled
;rafts, hut as the union got stronger, activists like Ben Gross pressed
to open more classifications to African Americans.
‘fhe UAW 1 · · Congress of I was part of the new more ega 1tanan
ndustrial o . . ‘ k h er were mostly rganizations. Shipyard wor ers, owev ,
COLU-‘-‘ vr .&..,J.W “;;
Tfl :E ‘ 160
servative AFL. So while the S
ore con b A teve
d by the rn d d union mem ers, FL unio tls%
Presente f 11 fle ge . . T ns 1ll re became u – . Americans to JOtn. here w ostly
brothers . African b . ere a f
Id ot permit f he Shipyard La orers union Wa ,. . e~ wou n ent o t · h 1 s ‘”‘-fr
·ons-90 perc nted workers in t e owest-p ‘d lean exceptl it represe . h. h . a1
0 American because·n d maintenance, in w ic whites Were r eeu,
·ons like unskt e . in the industry, the International b arey
pau , I est union oro h
f nd. But the arg I on Shipbuilders and Helpers of ,._ -ou 1 makers, r ‘”‘-fller
erhood of Bo1 er rcent of all shipyard workers) had . . lea
· about 7° pe h · b ‘Id 81gned (represenung . h K ser and other s 1p u1 ers providin h
ct wit at · 1 g t at
a 1940 contra b uld work. The Bo1 ermakers’ constit .
ion mem ers co 11 · . Utton
only un . A ericans from enro 1ng. Under Its NLRB
h ‘b. ted Af ncan m Id –
h Kaiser Company cou recruit nonmemb ertified contract, t e d b r. . ers
c . . 1. ts had been exhauste . But erore going on th only 1£ the umon is . e
job, these hires had to join the u~1on. . .
Unable to supply enough white workers, ~ut unwilling to admit
African Americans, the Boilermakers established segregated auxil-
iary union chapters. In 1943, their fi~st yea: of ~peration, the aux-
iliaries placed 10,000 African Americans in shipyards and other
industries where the Boilermakers controlled jobs. Auxiliary mem-
bers had to pay dues to the white local but were not permitted to file
grievances or vote in union elections. They received fringe benefits
worth about half what white members received. The union did not
assist black workers in advancing to better-paid jobs, and African
Americans could not promote to foreman if the role involved super-
vi~ing whites. Even if fully qualified African Americans performed
skilled work, the shipyards classified and paid them as trainees
One Kaiser worker w · · 1 f h e . . ent to a c1vi nghts meeting in protest o t es
pohc1es; the company fired h. f .
The NAACP fil im or attending. –
tices· the ag . ~d. an NLRB complaint regarding these pracd
· ‘ ency criticized th B · i · ine
its certificatio f h . e 01 ermakers’ policy but mainta .
n o t e whit 1 nine other national u . h es-on Y union. At least twenty-_ I
n1ons eit er 1 d . nure Y or restricted th exc u ed African Americans e em to second 1
In the postwar y -c ass auxiliaries. l _
·1 ears, sorne . vo un
tari Y, but federal . unions began to desegregate .
5 agencies contid d un10I1
· nue to recognize segregate
suppressed Incomes 161
“”‘ent itself until 1962, when President Kenned
1.·o the g ·ce Nonetheless, the Post Office’s National Asso-
it1’1 h practt . . . . . .
1 ed t e Carriers did not permit Afncan Amencans to J’oin
biflJ1 f Letter f . . . oo o til the 1970s. A ncan Amencan mailmen could
c1at1 reas un . d .
. oflle a_ s to protest mistreatment an instead had to join
ill s ievance . A . .
t 6le gr zation for Afncan mencans, the National Alli-
110 ll organ1 . .
catcha l Employees, a umon mostly serving truck drivers,
a f p0 sta l ‘d . b . aoce o d miscellaneous ower-pai JO categones. The alliance,
rters, an later recalled, “didn’t have the clout with the [local]
mernber C · d’d” Af ·
011e he way the Letter arners i , so ncan Americans master t . . ‘d . post likely to receive promotions, consi erauon of vacation
re less h . b . h we f nces and ot er JO ng ts . . e pre ere , . . .
t1!11 struction trades contmued to exclude Af ncan Amen cans
. the home and highway construction booms of the postwar
dunngso black workers did not share with whites the substantial
!ears, gains that blue collar workers realized in the two big wage
income . . .
owth periods of the mid-twentieth century-war production and
gr . . Af. A . . h subsequent suburbanization. ncan mencans were neit er per-
mitted to live in the new suburbs nor, for the most part, to boost
their incomes by participating in suburban construction.
In 1964 the NLRB finally refused to certify whites-only unions.
Although the policy was now changed, the agency offered Afri-
can Americans no remedy for decades of income suppression that
flowed from its unconstitutional embrace of segregation. Still
another decade passed before African Americans were admitted
to most AFL craft unions, but seniority rules meant it would take
many more years for them to achieve incomes in these trades that
were comparable to whites’. Racial income inequality by then was
firmly established, and suburban segregation was mostly complete.
h~ 1941 A Ph· .
carp ‘ · ihp Randolph, national president of the Pullman
0 rters’ ·
demand h union, organized a civil rights march on Washington to
t at Presid R · d 1 · ent oosevelt ban the segregation an exc us1on
. d fense industries. The presid · ns in e . ent
f African Arne_nca to convince civil nghts leaders to call st,11,i 0
ths trying k before it was scheduled h 0ff t~ for mon ‘ han a wee . . , e Pers e
h but less t d monstratton m return for an lladed mare , el the e . b . elCec .
dolph to cane . I discrimination y unions and man llt1 ye
Ran .. rac1a Wh’l ageln
d Proh1b1ung ll d war industnes. 1 e some fi ent or er contro e rrns co
in government- 1· was toothless. tn,
Po icy 1. d the new p 1e ,
d · ·1 · ht leader First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt supporte civz rig s . d
A. Philip Randolph’s demand that war industries be requzr~
to hire black workers. She was his emissary to her hus~an ‘
but also her husband’s emissary to Randolph, urging him to
call off the threatened June 1941 march on Washington.
. ornmittee The order created a Fair Employment Pracuces C cts
~FEPC) that could recommend cancellation of defense co~;pC
m cases of persistent discrimination but at the West Coastd fbe
offi f , a e.
ce, or example, no such recommendation was ever Ill
d . urisdiction over any firm that was 1 C ha J ·1· h . I re ated to th atP h as nonm1 itary osp1ta s that might b 1 e War i sue . v h e ca led u
effort, ded soldiers. 1et t e San Francisco FEPC . P0 n to
woun F · , d’ director treat et San ranc1sco s me 1cal centers t d . Was I to g o a mtt Af ·
t1!1ab physicians. rican
Af11eric_adn t Roosevelt ensured the agency’s weak b .
P esi en ness y nam r h idge publisher of the Louisville Courier-] l ing
k f,t r ‘ . ourna ‘ as the
JJar . ‘s first chairman. In a speech following his .
J1l 1ttee . . appointment
coJl’I ‘d praised segregation m defense plants. A publ. ‘
,; hrt ge . b h . tc uproar
yt d h’s resignauon, ut e remamed as an FEPC me b
f ce l . f m er, stat-or h nondiscnmmation was a ederal order “in the Naz· d’ . t at 1 1ctator
111g ” h h · d · ,, and not even t e mec amze armies of the earth All’ d attern, , 1e
P ,. is … could now force the Southern white people to give u th
or flx . . ,, . . . p e
. ‘ple of social segregation m war mdustnes.::
FEPC accomplishments were small. On one occasion, two skilled
African American steam~tters in the Richmond shipyards filed a
complaint with the committee over their relegation to the auxiliary
local; the union agreed to create an exception for these two, pro-
vided that its policy covering all others would be unchanged. On
another occasion, an African American was refused work at the
Bethlehem Shipbuilding Company in San Francisco because the
Machinists Union would not admit African Americans to mem-
bership; the FEPC called the union leaders to a hearing, but they
ignored the invitation and no further action was taken.
Like cities nationwide, San Francisco pr·acticed discrimination
in public employment and in its public utilities, such as telephone
Thirteen years later, Mark Ethridge was still publisher of his Louisville
newspaper when Andrew Wade attempted to occupy the home he had bought
from Carl and Anne Braden. As violence flared at the Wade residence, the
Courier-Journal published an editorial urging the mob to use “proper legal
procedures” to evict the Wades even though these events occurred six years
af~er the Supreme Court had f~und that no such legal procedures were per-
mi~s!hle. Ethridge’s editorial stated, “The real fault of judgment, in our
0P1?10n, lies with Mr. and Mrs. Carl Braden …. [Their white neighbors] are
entirely w”th’ h . . . h f ty in their subd’ .. 1 mt e1r nghts … m protestmg the pure ase o proper h .
ivision by Negroes … [and] there is no use denying that the value oft eir
property . 11 d wi ecrease as a result of the sale.” I
OLOR OF LAW TfIE C
Joseph James, leader of African American shipyard workers
in the San Francisco Bay Area, singing the national anthem
at a launching in 1943. Yet his union denied him the chance
for promotion, and he received few fringe benefits.
. . 1 d because compames, which at the time were very heavily regu ate e th
ey had local monopolies. Pacific Telephone and Telegraph, 0~
1 f h · ‘ I k erator, 1
t e reg’.on s argest firms, did not have a single blac_ op .)eve!
hired African Americans only as 1· anitors or for similar low –
k d · . state wor ‘an It even refused an FEPC request that it issue a
ing it would comply with th .
t saY . , e preside ,
,,ie~ order, The city s streetcar system f . nt s nondiscr· .
M re used h. . un1-
J1~t1 . ans unu 1942. aya Angelou wh 1· to ire Afri ..,.,eric , . b , o ted ab can
f.w nductor s JO as a teenager was out her age
ta co bl ·1 b’l , one of the fi to
ge h considera e ava1 a I ity of qualifi d . rst. lndicat-
. g t e A . h. e African A
in the Bay rea, wit 1n two years f h merican
rker f o t e new 1 · ~o
black plat orm operators when th h po ‘tcy there
re 7° ere ad b
~e inning of the war. een none at
the beg M . h’ .
at the anns 1p yard m Sausalito wh
11 11 . , ere workers’ d ..
. had been umntent1ona y mtegrated afte . . orm1-
tofles d b r recruits arrived t
‘dly to be separate y race, half of the African A .
rap1 h mencan workers
ed to pay dues to t e segregated branch of the B ·1 k re s . . . o1 erma ers. The
then demanded that Mannship dismiss the deli’n Af . uni . . quent ncan
..,ericans, and the shipyard complied. The California atto
11 rney gen-
eral and the navy admiral in_ charge of the area’s shipbuilding pressed
the workers to abandon their protest and rejoin the segregated aux-
iliary, but when they refused, the officials urged Marinship, without
success, to cancel the layoffs.
At an FEPC hearing, the union argued that it was in full com-
pliance with the president’s order because no African American
was denied work if he paid his dues, the same requirement that
applied to whites. The FEPC rejected this claim but suspended
the ruling pending a company appeal. The black Marinship work-
ers then sued, but a federal judge concluded that the workers had
no relevant rights under the “federal constitution or any federal .
The African Americans then took their case to California state
courts, where a judge suspended the firings, pending a company
appeal. Eventually, in 1945, the California Supreme Co~rt ~p~eld
t~e order, stating in unprecedented language that racial discnmm~-
tion is “contrary to the public policy of the United States and
state ” Th . . . h d · · but they had · e Boilermakers complied with t e ec1s10ns, .
come too late. At the time of the California Supreme Court ruling,
25 oo Af · . h’ ds but the war
‘ 0 ncan Americans worked 1n area s ipyar ‘
Was d’ h d d ped to 12,000,
en mg. Eight months later, the number a rop
h the shipyards shut down and . . e mont s, V1rt
d in another nin . 1 . d off, llalJy
an . were a1 . 1 h
11 .ts employees . .1 ly ineffective e sew ere. Lockh a 1 s simt ar . eed
The FEPC wa . . n Los Angeles and Boeing in Se
. Av1auon t att eo I
North American . s as janitors; when labor shortages f n y
. American h . ore d h. red Af ncan to open ot er categories, the co e
t ntractors . Illpan·
these defense co t’ on and job rights to the black w k ies
1 compensa t d h or ers
denied equa d d Steel responde to t e FEPC by . · c· Stan ar say,n
In Kansas ity, Ne ro working in twenty-five years and g,
“We have not had a g do
“We Fight for the Right to Work as well as Die for Victory
for the United Nations.” In 1942, demonstrators proteSt t~e
refusal of the St. Louis Small Arms Ammunition Plant to hire
· unition not plan to stan now.” In St Louis the Small Arms Amm d