Candace Wilkins of the historically black St. Albans section of Queens, N.Y., is headed for what she hopes will be greener pastures — down South.
Like many African Americans, Wilkins' family got its start in the North during the Great Migration of the first half of the 20th century, when droves of Southern blacks moved north, mostly to escape racial oppression and economic depression. Wilkins' grandmother moved to New York during the 1950s.
Now, as the New York Times reports, Wilkins is planning to retrace her grandmother's path, but in the opposite direction, by making the move from New York to Charlotte, N.C. The move is part of a growing trend among Northern blacks. Census data show that 44,000 blacks left New York state, more than half for the South, in 2009 alone.
The phenomenon is a fascinating look in real time at the impact of economic and social pressures on the lives of African Americans.
Read more at the New York Times.
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