The Negro Motorist Green Book: an International Travel Guide was a travel guide for the average black American family during the mid-20th century. Created by postal worker, Victor H. Green, this book soon known only as the “Green Book” was published in response to the many accounts of humiliation, discrimination, and violence that black families faced while driving through the United States. For 18 years, the “Green Book” acted as a modern-day Underground Railroad. However, after the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, the “Green Book” soon faded away, even from the pages of history. This summer, I will be traveling to significant places listed in the “Green Book” and speaking to persons who either used or remembered this book. Through my collection of oral history and research, I plan to construct a cultural study of black motorists during the mid-1900s. The “Green Book” will act as an innovative lens for further research into the Civil Rights Movement and the Jim Crow Laws. My research will result in a multi-media website including biographies, interviews, pictures, and blog entries about this research and hopefully bring to light a significant artifact of the Civil Rights Movement that has been generally overlooked in the past.
Abstract: “The Negro Motorist Green Book: an International Travel Guide”: Following in the 21st Century the Travel Guide of the Jim Crow Years
January 31, 2011 by