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Civil Rights in Ypsi - Look Through the Local Lens

#FATWTS - Activity 3

A.P. Marshall African American Oral History Archive

The A.P. Marshall African American Oral History Archive, hosted at YDL, chronicles the lives and struggles of Black Ypsilantians in their own words. Recorded by historian A.P. Marshall in the 1980’s, these interviews span several generations and use rich and varied personal stories to show profound social changes that occurred in Ypsilanti.

ACTIVITIES: Look Through the Local Lens

Option 1

Listen to interviews with Eugene Beatty and Vanzetti Hamilton in the A.P. Marshall archive. Beatty was the first Black public school principal in the state of Michigan during his tenure at Ypsilanti’s Harriet School (now the Perry Early Learning Center). Vanzetti Hamilton was a pioneering Black lawyer who took on many Civil Rights discrimination cases.

Option 2

Listen to the 2nd episode of YDL’s new podcast Ypsi Stories. Architectural Historian Lee Azus discusses urban renewal on Ypsilanti’s south side and how racism in 20th-century American housing policy shaped Ypsilanti.

Option 3

Visit the Ypsilanti StoryMap.

See how the historically Black South Side of Ypsilanti was impacted by and responded to racial discrimination, segregation, and failed urban renewal.

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