89.1 WEMU

matt siegfried

Ypsilanti Historical Society.

Did you know that Ypsilanti’s New Jerusalem Baptist Church was originally built as a school for African-American students?  The First Ward School closed in 1919 after more than 50 years of operating in the era of “separate but equal.”  WEMU’s Jorge Avellan explores the history of the school, its connection to a landmark segregation case in Michigan, and where we stand on that issue 100 years later. 


Ypsilanti
Wikipedia Media Commons / wikipedia.org

Like many states, Michigan began observing the Labor Day holiday in 1894.  Washtenaw County played a role in developing the movement before it became a holiday.  


Linda Williams-Bowie

Earlier this month, we took a quick look into the Underground Railroad in our Southeast Michigan.  As part of Black History Month, we continue exploring stories that came out of that era in Washtenaw County.