Fotoeins Fotografie

questions of place & home

Posts tagged ‘Jimi Hendrix’

My Seattle: living elements of the city’s black history

Oh Seattle: how is your black history defined?

With the city’s proximity to Vancouver, my time in or any understanding of Seattle was incomplete without an examination of the city’s non-white communities. I had questions about the black community and in particular why the city remains racially segregated. People of color, including black people, were once forbidden from buying houses in specific neighbourhoods because of their skin colour. The Central District (CD) thrived as a black community in the 2nd-half of the 20th-century, but now, citizens struggle with gentrification, displacement, and economic racism. There’s much more I need to ask and learn, but for now, I describe below a selection of landmarks highlighting contributions by and the historical impact of the black community to city and nation.


( Click here for images and more )

Black Strathcona, Strathcona, Black History Month, East Vancouver, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, fotoeins.com

My Vancouver: Jimi Hendrix’s grandma and Black Strathcona

Above/featured: Hogan’s Alley: Main Streeet at Union Street.

When a wae lad was I, I viewed Vancouver’s Strathcona neighbourhood through the various lenses of my parents, the people on our block, and the surrounding community. That is, I viewed the area as primarily Chinese, in school and on the streets.

As an important teacher, history can often be painful. But an important and unspoken responsibility as city resident and national citizen is recognition and acknowledgement of these past lessons. I learned years later about the destruction of the African-Canadian community with the construction of the Viaduct, which not coincidentally almost eliminated Chinatown. The Viaduct is a remnant of the planned 1960s highway project in the city of Vancouver, but final removal of the viaduct is coming in the next few years.

February as Black History Month has been officially recognized in Canada since 1995. To honour the rich history by African Canadians in the province, British Columbia has also officially recognized Black History Month.

With the present focus on Nora Hendrix, below are specific examples of Nora’s presence in Vancouver to represent partly the history of African Canadians in the city; there’s much more at Black Strathcona.

( Click here for images and more )

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