I-"I Was a Negro in the South for 30 Days" - Ray Sprigle - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

I-"I Was a Negro in the South for 30 Days" - Ray Sprigle - Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

'I Traveled, Ate, Black'

by: Ray Sprigle | publication date: August 9, 1948 | Publication: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette | pages: 1

 For four endless, crawling weeks I was a Negro in the Deep South. I ate, slept, traveled, lived Black. I lodged in Negro households. I ate in Negro restaurants. I slept in Negro hotels and lodging houses. I crept through the back and side doors of railroad stations. I traveled Jim Crow in buses and trains and street cars and taxicabs. Along with 10,000,000 Negroes I endured the discrimination and oppression and cruelty of the iniquitous Jim Crow system. It was a strange, new-and for me, uncharted world that I entered when, in a Jim Crow railroad coach, we rumbled across the Potomac out of Washington. It was a world of which I had no remote conception, despite scores of trips through the South. The world I had known in the South was white. Now I was black and the world I was to know was as bewildering as if I had been dropped down on the moon. The towers and turrets of the great cities of the Southland, painted against the falling night, as we rolled along the highways, represented a civilization and an economy completely alien to me and the rest of the black millions in the South.   

The first article in Sprigle's series focuses on his travel methods, lack of detection, and reliance on a "guide" to navigate the African American communities in the south.

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