Travelling While Black With New App

Green Book for mobile devices can turn the painful history of travelling while black into an instrument for learning.

Many years ago the so-called Green book helped Black travelers find hotels and businesses which would agree to serve them as, during the Jim Crow era, they could be rejected literally anywhere.

Here is some unpleasant statistics

In 1956, only three hotels in the entire state of New Hampshire offered accommodations to Black travelers.

In the end of the 1960s, more than 10,000 towns forbade Blacks from entering their city limits after dark, including Glendale, Calif., and Warren, Mich.

Over half the incorporated towns in Illinois were “sundown towns” like Anna, Ill., which expelled its entire Black population in 1909 and had the unofficial slogan “Ain’t no niggers allowed.”

According to The Root, the South Carolina African-American Heritage Commission decided to recreate the 1937 Victor Hugo Green  Negro Motorist Green Book (a guide for New York of places that welcomed Black travelers) which many called  “the Bible for Black travellers” in the form  of a mobile app which encompasses every county in South Carolina and highlights the rich cultural history of places like Charleston’s slave market, numerous civil rights landmarks and the historic Rosenwald Schools.

“The development of the mobile guide perfectly aligns with our organization’s mission to identify and promote the preservation of historic sites, structures, buildings and culture of the African-American experience in South Carolina,” said Jannie Harriot, vice-chairperson of the commission.

The creators hope that the application will completely change the whole idea of “traveling while Black.”

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