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Encyclopedia Dubuque


"Encyclopedia Dubuque is the online authority for all things Dubuque, written by the people who know the city best.”
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Affiliated with the Local History Network of the State Historical Society of Iowa, and the Iowa Museum Association.


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AFRICAN AMERICANS. In a study of Iowa's history prior to the CIVIL WAR, Dubuque was the only city in the state with a sizable black community. In 1840 seventy-two African Americans lived in Dubuque giving the city Iowa's largest black population. (1) Sixteen “slaves,” were enumerated, all living in the area of Dubuque. (2) Early mayors including F. K. O'FERRALL and Peter LORIMIER, land receiver Thomas MCKNIGHT and Iowa U. S. Senator George Wallace JONES were all slave owners. (3) Senators Jones owned the most slaves, three, and even more while living in Sinsinawa Mound, Wisconsin Territory. (4) By 1850, however, while Dubuque's white population had increased ten-times, the population of blacks had fallen to 29. This decline can be attributed to two factors: 1) a general decline in LEAD MINING and related activities needing manual and day laborers and 2) a lynching in 1840. (5)

Dubuque's early economy was dominated by MINING and commercial capitalism; in the absence of manufacturing industries, most of the working class population was involved in manual labor. (6) Most German workers were skilled artisans. The Irish were generally unskilled workers. In Europe, the British ruled the Irish under codes known as "Penal Laws" that resulted in oppression and exclusion. When they arrived in America, the Irish were thrown together with blacks in low income jobs by society on the east coast. The resulting socialization led to mulattoes either referred to as "(word omitted) turned inside out" or "smoked Irish." (7) Carrying these bitter memories westward, Irish saw blacks as competitors for jobs.

The socioeconomic-occupational status of blacks from 1850-1920 remained basically unchanged as day laborers and house servants (8) In 1850 only two of the 29 blacks in the city were identified as self-employed--barbers. In the late 1850s one, Agnes Arthur, was listed as operating a boarding house. (9) In 1870 there were only three self-employed blacks--two barbers and a blacksmith. The 1900 census found only black engineer who worked aboard a boat in the ICE HARBOR. There were also two painters and one bricklayer. By 1910, most semi-skilled black workers disappeared; in 1920 the only "prominent" black resident was a minister. The black population from 1870 to 1920 fell to 76--(equal to one-tenth of one percent). (10)

The lynching in 1840, an isolated incident of violence in city's early history, was that of Nathaniel Morgan, a young free black who worked as a cook and waiter at a local hotel. Morgan was accused of stealing a truck of clothes. Whipped and beaten by a mob, he was eventually hung when the trunk could not be found. The members of the mob were arrested and tried, but then acquitted on the grounds that their "intention to commit murder had not been proven."

The case of RALPH in 1839 and the 1851 repeal of the 1839 territorial law banning interracial marriage re-enforced the idea that Iowans considered African Americans as political and economically inferior. The Iowa Legislature passed what became known as BLACK CODE which slowed the movement of free blacks into the territory. In 1839 the first law prevented "blacks and mulattoes" from settling in Iowa if they did not possess "a certificate of freedom and the ability to post a bond of $500" showing that they "would not become a public charge." (11) The second law passed in 1840 prohibited interracial marriages. (12) In 1844 Edward LANGWORTHY, at the state constitutional convention, asked the other delegates to pass his proposal that the legislature prevent black and mulatto settlement in the state. The measure was adopted, but removed at a later meeting. The convention, however, did exclude free black males from voting or serving in the state legislature and militia. (13)

The PANIC OF 1857 was a nationwide calamity that did not spare Dubuque. Between 1840 and 1860 the black population of Dubuque fell from 8.6 percent to .5 percent. This was at a time when Iowa's black population (between 1850 and 1860) tripled in the state. (14)

Contributing to division among races were the writings of Dennis MAHONY, editor of the Dubuque Herald and a strong southern advocate. The Dubuque Herald on April 23, 1861 carried the following editorial:

         Free Blacks Coming North. The boats from St. Louis last Saturday 
         had several hundred free Negroes aboard, seeking homes in the 
         "Land of the Free." A public notice was given last week that all
         free blacks must leave that city and State in five days. This 
         caused a very dark colored stampede. We are glad that only a very 
         few stopped at Dubuque. (15)

The following editorial appeared first in the LaCrosse Democrat but was reprinted in the Dubuque Heraldon March 16, 1862. [Note: An inflammatory word has been removed so that the editorial can appear here].

         All for the (XXX)-  We have figured out the cost of 
         the present war in cash to date, and find that 
         the Government has already expended enough money to
         purchase every (XXX) in the United States and to 
         furnish each one with a flannel shirt, a copy of
         the New York Tribune, and a quill tooth pick. 
         Nothing like meddling with that which is none of our 
         business. (16)

On July 27, 1863 the United States War Department organized the 1st Regiment Iowa Volunteer Infantry A.D. (African Descent) when there were probably less than fifteen hundred persons of African descent living in Iowa. There were enough recruits to form six companies, although all companies included men from adjoining states. An additional four companies were recruited in Missouri. The total strength of the regiment when the last man was recruited on December 3, 1863 was 911. (17) The Union Army eventually filled 138 infantry regiments, 6 cavalry regiments and 16 artillery regiments with African Americans whether as soldiers or staff. (18) In 1863 it was reported by the Dubuque Herald that Secretary of War Stanton intended to raise an army of two hundred thousand "negroes to subdue the South." (19)

The idea of recruiting African Americans fueled racism in Dubuque. Dennis A. Mahony editorialized that the Lincoln administration had for nearly a year been trying to "recruit a few negro regiments" and that the effort had met with only moderate success. "The few who are claimed to be in the service have been dragged into it by force and kept there at the point of the bayonet." (20)

The Herald's anti-black position intensified in 1863. In an editorial on April 5, 1863 Mahony wrote:

          Who wants to vote the (XXX)-emancipation ticket? Who
          wants Iowa covered with indolent blacks? Answer at the 
          polls. (21)

Despite the anti-black sentiment of the Herald, or perhaps because of it, Albert Linzy, age 22 and living in Dubuque, enlisted on September 12, 1863 as a Third Sergeant. In ill health, he was mustered out on October 11, 1863 and died of disease on October 26, 1863 in Keokuk, Iowa where he was buried in the Oakland Cemetery. (23)

The Herald continued its claim that recruitment efforts of African Americans had failed in 1864. In addition, the claims were made that the effort had spread "division and discord" in the North, operated as a barrier to the exchange of prisoners, and led to cruelties in violation of the rules of war. (24)

          ...negro troops are more expensive--less valuable and possess less
          power than white soldiers. And when the administration candidly
          reviews the whole subject, and rises above a mere party view of the
          matter it will be constrained to abandon the whole scheme of negro
          soldiers as visionary and disastrous. (25)

U. S. Senator Grimes of Iowa declared that he "would see a negro shot down in battle rather than the son of a Dubuquer." In a perverse logic, he later remarked that the death of a black soldier meant that a white soldier had lived. (26)

The following article appeared in the Dubuque Democratic Herald on September 10, 1864. (27)

         Happy Are We, (XXX). So Gay--Yesterday morning a dark cloud
         was discovered coming up Main Street which took the citizens
         by surprise...The cloud was ten colored recruits...They slept
         in the room in the St. Cloud block and are an orderly,
         respectible (sic) looking set of men, and don't smell very
         bad although yesterday was rather warm. If they ever get out
         of the army their troubles will then just commence.

The racism in some cases can only be seen today when the meaning of the words is understood. The following editorial appeared in December 1864. The definition of "contrabands" appears in parentheses: (28)

         Street Lamps Opaque-The street lamps were not in a state of
         illumination last evening, and the moon was in company with
         them. It was almost as dark as a regiment of "contrabands"
         (African Americans). Where was the lamp lighter?

On October 15, 1864 the following news article appeared in the Dubuque Democratic Herald showing a grudging admiration for a surprising subject: (29)

         A Black Broker--Our citizens had a practical illustration
         the other day of a (XXX) dealing in white men.  A negro,
         from some interior town, presented himself at the Provost
         Marshal's Office as a volunteer to fill the quota of his
         town, and was also authorized, and furnished with the
         means, to buy enough men to fill the quota.  He flourished
         among the white brokers, and was a formidable rival,
         bidding up in a spirited manner. He got one white man for
         $700, and would pay that much for several more, but he
         happened to open negotiations with a Copperhead who
         gave him a blow over the peeper, and the (XXX) left for
         home soon after with a black eye, and has not been seen
         since. He is several degrees above those ranting, howling
         abolitionists who blow war all the time, but never enlist
         themselves. He is going to the front 'wid de white fokes.'

Encouraged to leave the South was not a promise of a better life.

         The Charity of Color-A benevolent soldier man, whose name
         we did not learn, brought from the South a colored woman
         some eight months ago. He had assisted her and fifty or
         more other colored persons to leave the South and seek
         their fortunes in the kindly North. He gave the women to
         some family acquaintances or relatives here and she worked
         for nothing just as well as the abolitionists accuse those
         of her color doing in the South.  All was well as long as
         she did not cost anything. But hereby hangs a tale. She is
         about to become a mother, so the mistress drove her away
         and she was obligated to sleep in an outbuilding on Tuesday
         night without fire. Yesterday the Overseer of the Poor was
         endeavoring to find some place the poor creature could be
         comfortable. Where is all the abolition philanthropy of
         those who wanted these colored fellow citizens of African
         descent to come North? They welcome them as long as they
         can get their work for nothing, but young mulattoes are
         decidedly at a discount. (30)

The issue of black voting came to Dubuque in 1865 when the lieutenant governor came to the city to speak. The Dubuque Herald referred to this official as the governor's "man Friday" with not so subtle racial implications and went on to state:

         His "man Friday," obeys orders and will start the "billows"
         (sic) tonight. Those wishing to witness the exhibition of
         negro-equality logic will be present. (31)

The following day the Herald reported that a "baker's dozen of African admirers" attended the meeting. While no report was made of the speaker's arguments, the article mentioned that Delos E. LYON was pinching his leg to stay awake and that by the end of the speech the empty seats in the audience "demonstrated the moving power of the lieutenant governor's logic." (32)

"Ah, Chile, You's Bin Eatin' Dem Watermillyons." Trade Card. Photo: Joseph Jacobsmeier
"Specht Massa make it lively if he done cotch dis chile." Trade Card. Photo: Joseph Jacobsmeier
Trade Card. Photo: Joseph Jacobsmeier
Trade Card. Photo: Joseph Jacobsmeier
Trade Card. Photo: Joseph Jacobsmeier
"Golly, Missas, what am dat yeast going wid di dough?"Trade Card. Photo: Joseph Jacobsmeier

Trade cards were the means of advertising a business. In the 1800s stereotypes on these cards of African Americans ridiculed their intelligence, speech, morality, industriousness and foods.

This local advertisement was found inside the front cover of an 1879 edition of McGuffey's Fourth Eclectic Reader.

After the Civil War, some blacks worked on the riverboats where they found some support among their fellow workers. In 1866 the white members of a crew on a packet boat went on strike for better pay. While many of the white crew members had some money for food, the thirty blacks had nothing leading to the following story in the Dubuque Daily Herald: (33)

         Commendable Sympathy--We are informed that the whole crews 
         that lately left the service of the Packet company were
         soliciting subscriptions yesterday, to aid the black crews
         who are without money consequent upon their refusal to
         work as per contract. The company owes each man $37.80,
         not one cent of which will be paid unless they resume work
         and continue until the season of navigation closes. In
         passing a crowd of the black crews yesterday, one of them
         was humming in melancholy tone the popular refrain:
                    All the work is dark and dreary
                    Everywhere I roam,
                    On darkies how my heart grows weary
                    Far from the old folks at home.

The efforts of the white boatman among the people of Dubuque had success: (34)

         Helping the Blacks--The negro roustabouts of the Key City 
         who left the boat for an increase in wages are hanging around
         the levee without a morsel to eat or a cent in their pockets
         and would starve to death for all the notice the abolitionists
         take of them. The copperheads are their real friends in their
         hour of need. They have furnished them with victuals and
         besides the $25 previously, collected $15 last Friday to
         relieve their wants. Many a needy boatman has given liberally
         to keep the poor blacks from starving, and they are beginning
         to find out who are their true friends. The river men, that is
         the white roustabouts and deck hands, take a lively interest
         in their welfare, and will see to it that the poor negro is
         supplied with food and clothing if nothing more. The boarding
         houses, groceries, and bakeries downtown contributed a certain
         amount daily to keep the thirty blacks from suffering.

Strikes spread to other boats in the late summer of 1866. The Dubuque Herald expected that the packet company would have no trouble finding plenty of men working along the river to be substitutes. (35) Instead, the company returned to Cincinnati, Ohio where 206 blacks were hired as strikebreakers to replace striking blacks and whites. (36) When the body of an African American, a "floater," was found in the Mississippi River, the Dubuque Herald commented, "We should not be surprised." (37) When another "colored crew" left the city for their home in Cincinnati, the article went on to state "cologne must come down (in price) now...there is no use for it until next season." (38)

In September the new black crew members decided to strike. As reported in the Dubuque Herald: (39)

          a sassafras colored (XXX), in town went down to the levee and
          whispered something in their ears when they all left the boat 
          in a body, without any notice at all after she had been loaded 
          in Dunleith and was ready to start for this side of the river.

In response, the company sent an agent to Cincinnati to hire 300 whites to work as crew members. The newspaper commented that these strikes were not unexpected as "a (XXX) is no better than white man; they all want 'more." (40)

Businesses that did not discriminate had public opinion with which to be concerned.

              To the Editor of the Dubuque Herald--Having recently been 
              a resident of the city, I would like to inquire whether it 
              is customary for the land-lords in first-class hotels to 
              seat the colored with the white folks at the table. Having 
              been an eyewitness to the proceeding, we, for one, protest 
              against the custom of "mixing boarders" in this promiscuous  
              manner. We respect a negro in his place, and cannot but 
              believe that such a course will be injurious to the reputation 
              of the House and offensive to the traveling public. (41)

In 1866 the following editorial appeared in the Dubuque Herald:

             A Colored Petition-A petition is being circulated through
             town asking the Board of Education to provide schools for
             the education of colored children. A Copperhead says that
             if such schools are established "(XXX) will flock here in 
             swarms to get 'larnin' and that the gas will have to be 
             left on all day to find the way through town." A Democrat 
             is asked if he would not rather have them by themselves 
             than mixed with the whites, and on this appeal several have 
             signed the petition. On the other hand, it is argued that 
             there is no employment here for any more (XXX), and no danger 
             of them coming. (42)

Sometimes it seemed the writer was not aware of his/her racism. In a report on the newly opened school for blacks, an editorial in the Dubuque Herald remarked that the seventeen "scholars" came in "all sizes, ages, and shades of complexion, straight hair, curly hair and wool. They are quiet and orderly with a determination to learn something if they only get a chance." (43)

On September 12, 1867, 12-year-old Susan Clark was denied admission to Muscatine's Second Ward Common School Number 2 because she was black. Her father, Alexander Clark, filed a lawsuit to allow admission of his daughter to the public schools. In 1868, the Iowa Supreme Court held that "separate" was not "equal" and ordered Susan Clark, an African-American, admitted to the public schools. This effectively integrated Iowa's schools ninety-six years before the federal court decision, Brown v. the Board of Education in Topeka, did the same thing on a national scale. (44)

It would be expected that the AFRICAN METHODIST EPISCOPAL CHURCH in Dubuque would have had access to copies of The Christian Record. First published in 1854 by the Rev. J.P. Campbell, this early edition was short-lived. In 1861, under the Elisha Weaver, the New Series, Volume 1 began. Benjamin T. Tanner became editor in 1867, and was followed in that position in 1885 by the Rev. Benjamin F. Lee who served until 1892. Violence in the South was reported in factual terms. It also provided images of the black situation throughout the country. The "Information Wanted" page that continued for years included information about broken families, the enforced separations of parents, children, brothers, sisters, and all relationships created by slavery in the South. (45)

Cases of reverse discrimination also occurred if less frequently. On January 27, 1873 African Americans held a "black ball" in the DUBUQUE CITY HALL. When a white woman tried to enter the premises she was escorted out by the marshal. The Dubuque Herald stated that the ten couples present "hoed it down until daylight." (46)

Accommodations from whites for African Americans were reported. Black crew members of the "Belle of LaCrosse" walked off the boat in May, 1873 over pay that had fallen from $45.00 to $35.00. Without food or lodging, they were allowed to stay in the city court room from Saturday until Monday. The wage issue was settled, and they rejoined the boat. (47) Residents of Dubuque found in the same year that the first black had been seated as a juror on the United States District Court of Iowa. The Dubuque Herald reported that Joel J. Epps, of Fayette County, "owner of one of the finest farms in the county and rated a clear-headed man" held the honor." In the same year Theophilus Augustus Thompson, a resident of Dubuque, was recognized as the first African American chess expert and published a book Chess Problems: Either to Play and Mate.

Ridicule, however, remained the primary reason to feature stories of African Americans. "A Colored Knot," reported the instance of a black man forgetting to get a marriage license and included the derogatory comment, "Robert Glove and Hattie Delano, two of the colored aristocracy of the city..." (48) On August 24, 1873, the editors of the Dubuque Herald felt it worth the space to include the following as "news:" (49)

           A gentleman of color entered a bookstore yesterday and inquired,
           "Mister, got any dem ar'tings you put letter in--I forgits if
           dey are inwhelupments or overalls--jist give me ten cents wuf." 

Struggling against bigotry, African Americans met in the market hall on the evening of July 8, 1873. Those in attendance supported a proposal to celebrate the emancipation of slaves in the British West Indies in 1834, the emancipation proclamation of Abraham Lincoln, and passage of the 13th amendment to the United States Constitution. The event was planned for August 1st and black residents of Wisconsin, Illinois and Iowa were invited.

In 1875 Dubuque's African American population let it be known that they wanted to join in the celebration of the 100th birthday of Irish patriot Daniel O'Connell. The invitation was accepted by the O'Connell centennial committee and a meeting of African Americans was called. Mr. E. Blackstone reminded those in attendance it was the first time African Americans living in Dubuque had ever been asked to join any procession on anything like an equal footing with whites. It was moved and seconded to wear the O'Connell badge and carry the American flag. It was then moved and seconded that all who would join in the parade should stand. The entire audience rose to its feet. (50)

Following the example of other groups, Dubuque's African American community planned a "pic nic" (sic) at McKnight's Springs on August 2, 1875. Upon returning to the city, a grand ball was to be held. (51) A similar event was held in August 1876 to celebrate emancipation. The Dubuque Herald reported that forty-eight African American couples traveled to Specht's Ferry for a day of

                  dancing, croquet, quoits, athletic sports, 
                  and singing to their hearts content. A half 
                  dozen "genteel" young men cut an elegant 
                  figure yesterday reeling along White Street. 
                  They had better take pattern after their 
                  colored brethren. (52)

Dubuque audiences in 1875 enjoyed traveling African American entertainment groups like the "Georgia Minstrels." The Dubuque Herald was also generous with its praise of a "Mr. Green, the colored hunter," who it described as "the most successful sportsman in procuring birds for the embalming taxidermy being learned by a number of our citizens." (53) As the American centennial grew closer, the Dubuque Herald even chose to criticize Clinton for only paying a "colored band" a total of $75.00 for playing on the afternoon and evening of July 4th.

In January 31, 1877 a group of white parents petitioned the school board asking that 'a separate school for colored children be maintained at some convenient locality.' (54) The Dubuque Herald staff noted that 'The Board are not so ignorant of the Iowa Supreme Court decision, but so long as the entire community were satisfied with the separate school it was unwise to disturb it.' (55) In an unusual reaction, J. D. Jennings, president of the board, wrote to his fellow board members through a newspaper article. In it he reminded them of the Iowa Supreme Court decision and declared the board's resolution in favor of a separate school null and void. (56) The all-black school was closed, and local schools became integrated. 

The increased participation of the African American community in politics was seen in the presidential election of 1876. Rev. Cheek, a black minister, speaking at a Republican gathering at the Globe Hall, said that the black man should think and act for himself without intimidation or dictation from either party. He would rejoice in the election of Hayes but believed it was a compliment to the colored race that they were the arbitrators of the destinies of so great a nation. (57) African Americans were also willing to pursue their cases within the legal system. In 1876 Mr. Bell, a local barber, had the local police use a search warrant to inspect the premises of a Mr. Duccinni, an accused "umbrella wrestler." (58)

By 1877 the tone of newspaper articles appeared to have changed. In July an article referred to a picnic of many of the city's blacks north of town. In August the following appeared:

                 The sociable at the African M. E. church last
                 evening was well attended and greatly enjoyed
                 by those present. (59)

On September 7, 1877 the Dubuque Herald announced, without comment, that the local African American community had purchased the OLD STONE CHURCH. (60) The most progressive reform made in years locally was the incorporation on September 19, 1877 of the DUBUQUE CHARITY HOSPITAL which was available to anyone regardless of age, sex, nationality, creed or color. October 9, 1877 was an election day, readers of the Dubuque Herald were reminded, "when a freeman regardless of color enjoys the rights of suffrage and votes for the man of his choice." (61)

A return to the tone of earlier days came in 1878. In article entitled "Dark Doings," the Dubuque Herald described what it concluded was the founding of a "darky" lodge of ODD FELLOWS. The "sousing" with cold water during the initiation was determined to be the reason "some of our colored population have turned several shades whiter." (62) The marriage of a colored man from Dubuque to a white woman of Platteville caused the Herald to remark, "Whither are we drifting?" (63) Whites attending services at the African American church on Locust in February 1878, according to the Dubuque Herald, were "white trash." (64) "Bob Lynch, the colored barber," was apparently unusual enough to be included the information in the title to an article dealing with the naming of jurors for 1879. (65)

The concern with inter-racial dating was evident from this lengthy editorial carried in the Dubuque Herald on April 6, 1879":

            Seated together in the dress circle of the Opera House, last
            evening, were a young colored man and a young white woman. The
            dusky descendant of some thoroughbred Ethiopian escorted his
            white companion of the gentler sex both to an from the theater,
            and it was observed, when the performance was over, they linked
            arms when going out. The young woman was a blond, and her
            flaxen hair trailed down her back in a large plait the end of
            which was tied with a ribbon. She was well dressed and appeared
            utterly unconscious of the contempt with which her white sisters
            viewed her. The sight of that couple sitting so lovingly
            together was calculated to draw down the vengeance of the gods. (66)

Irresponsible history "lessons" were also offered:

            One of the causes of the negro exodus from the south (sic) is the
            presence in the statute books in most of the cotton raising states
            of laws making chicken and pig-stealing penitentiary offenses. As
            soon as Kansas, in self-defense, enacts similar laws, an exodus
            from that state will begin. (67)

Beginning in July 1880 the African Methodist Episcopal Church was appealing for financial help in building a church. Disregarding it earlier statements, the writers of the Dubuque Herald issued the following statement.

                            Help a Good Cause
      The African Methodist Episcopal congregation have purchased a lot
      at the rear of the LORIMIER HOUSE north of Julien Avenue, on
      which they design erecting a church building at a cost of about
      $1000. The have paid $150 for the lot. Their desire is to have a
      place of worship commensurate with their means, free from mortgages
      or other encumberance, and to this end they mean to exert them-
      selves and spare no effort. They are weak of themselves numerically
      and financially, but they have claims for kindly consideration from
      the people of Dubuque which we have full confidence will be
      considered favorably in their behalf now when they are in need of
      kindly encouragement.  They have struggled heroically and in a manner
      which challenges admiration to preserve their church organization here
      in the face of much that was calculated to discourage them, and for
      this they deserve credit and approval. Of themselves they cannot do
      much, but with a little aid such as many of our people can well afford
      to give, they can accomplish all they aim at or hope for. They will
      call upon our citizens to assist them in their efforts to build their
      church and it is hoped that they will meet with the realization of
      their most sanguine expectations. The colored people of Dubuque ought
      not to appeal in vain for a house of worship. (68)

Stories of incidents between blacks and whites were not permitted to be localized. In 1882 the following story was published on page 1 of the Bolivar (Tennessee) Bulletin:

       There was an effort to draw the color line in the jail in Dubuque, Iowa
       the other day. Two negro roustabouts had stolen $345 from a woman sick
       with ague on the steamer Mary Morton and were imprisoned. Several Irish-
       men in the jail gave them a welcome with chair-round and table legs, and
       it required all the force in the courthouse to quell the riot. (69)

Newspaper articles of events staged by the "colored citizens of Dubuque" appeared occasionally. On August 1, 1890 a "grand barbecue and emancipation celebration" was held in Glab's Grove. Rev. Christopher Hunt of Missouri was the orator and music was furnished by the Dubuque Coronet Band. (70) The August 2, 1890 Herald reported that the event was well attended with "white people there in abundance." (71) The newspaper also reported that Charles Curtis of the Colored Anti-Prohibition League was also to organize a local branch of the state organization with twenty-five charter members.

Dubuque hosted the state meeting of the Colored Anti-Prohibition State League on September 15, 1890 at the SAENGERBUND AUDITORIUM. It was expected that seventy-five delegates would attend. Following the report of committees and other business, a grand banquet and ball was scheduled. The League was organized in 1882 with fifteen charter members. By 1890 the organization had grown to 865 members with nine local organizations in congressional districts. (72)

The members of the League was adopted with "great applause:"

                   Resolved, That we, as citizens of Iowa and not as
                   negroes or colored people petition the members of
                   our next legislature to use every honorable means
                   to repeal that farcical law, so-called prohibition,
                   and we denounce the action of the fanatics in our
                   last legislature for not repealing that obnoxious
                   law that we deem an imposition upon the people of
                   this state. (73)

Officers of the organization were unanimously elected by acclamation: (74)

                   President Charles Curtis, Marion
                   First Vice President-J.H. Willis, Dubuque
                   Second Vice President-R. Brody, Cedar Rapids
                   Secretary-Charles B. Jones, Council Bluffs
                   Assistant Secretary-J W. Morgan, Dubuque
                   Treasurer-John Green, Sr., Dubuque

Under the title "Sable Sons of Senegambia," a reporter in August 1891 reported on the Emancipation Day celebration. While reporting that a large number of African Americans attended, the reporter recounted that "while it was a colored picnic, the white trash were out in force outnumbering their colored brethren two to one." The reporter went on to write "among the dusky damsels whose attractiveness brought them special attention were Mrs. ___ and her daughter. Many others whose handsome faces, forms or costumes merited special attention were too modest to give their names to the society reporter." (75)

In November 1893, an all-black play, "Among the Breakers," was performed by members of the African American community in Dubuque. A drama critic of the Dubuque Herald commented:

                Miss Lulu Green,s Bessie Starbright, made a hit 
                as the heroine. Joe Norris, as the lighthouse keeper, 
                was right at home although it must be confessed we 
                prefer Joe dressed up in a swallow tail coat, with 
                white tie and patent leather shoes, doing duty in the 
                vestibule of one of the swell residences when a reception 
                is in progress. (76)

In 1894 without further comment the Iowa State Bystander stated that there would be no Negro Democratic Club in Dubuque that year. (77) The same year Gustav BOLDT was able to assemble enough African Americans to provide, according to the Dubuque Herald a "coterie of colored waiters" to attended to the needs of the guests at a wedding held in Guttenberg. (78) The same year the Dubuque Daily Herald announced that the "colored U. P. V." met April 24 to establish a organization for their mutual protection and advancement. (79) Emancipation Day was an important holiday for African Americans in 1894, but internal disputes led to separation. The Baptists celebrated at RHOMBERG PARK while the Methodists held their celebration at an unmentioned location. (80) The African Methodist Episcopal Church closed in August due to lack of financial support. (81)

In September 1896 "Dude" Christopher organized and drilled the colored men's sound money club in the LORIMIER HOUSE. The group was scheduled to participate in the local sound money parade. (83)

The school board in 1905 was faced with a request to have the only African American girl removed from the high school. The request was made by the parents of a girl. The family had recently moved to Dubuque from Texas. The board stood firm, and the white girl left the school. (83)

Race relations remained strained as the twentieth century began. In 1906 a football team from Savannah, Georgia consisting of fifteen and one black player visited Dubuque. Staying in a local hotel, the manager refused to seat the black in the main dining hall. He was able, according to the management, to order off the menu and be served upstairs in his room. While the players accepted the idea, the teachers refused and left with the players to find another restaurant. On the other hand, readers of the Dubuque Telegraph-Herald were treated to the stories of entertainment career of Curry HOWARD.

1908 calendar with what appears to be a controversial subject--the lady of the house playing cards with a servant in the servant's quarters

In 1907 the all-black seven member Dixie Jubilee Singers, were invited to perform at ST. JOSEPH COLLEGE. College organizers tried to make housing arrangements in advance, but all except two hotel managers refused to accept the singers as guests. The group was eventually fed and housed on the college campus.

In 1911 Iowa Governor Carroll appointed the Iowa delegates to the National Negro Educational Congress in Denver, Colorado. Among those names were John C. Wells, an employee of the UNION ELECTRIC COMPANY and Wiley Johnson, who worked at PITZEN'S SHAVING PARLOR. (84)

Athletic ability among African Americans in Dubuque was recognized nationally as early in 1918. In an article mentioning outstanding African Americans in sports, Edward Solomon "Sol" BUTLER was expected to show great ability during his college career. In 1933 Theatrece GIBBS, as far as can be determined, was the first African American high school football captain in the United States.

Until WORLD WAR I, African Americans were hired in low-status and low-paying jobs across the United States and in Dubuque. (106) Black workers were seen as potential unskilled cheap labors who could and were used by employers to keep wages low and as strikebreakers.

With the participation of the United States in World War I, reports of African American servicemen were included in the Telegraph Herald. While blacks and whites were trained at the same camps, they were trained separately. It was reported that their record as soldiers was "unexcelled" although they did not serve with white soldiers. In 1917 black soldiers were commanded by white officers, but it was expected that this would change due to a training facility for black officers being established in Des Moines, Iowa. Rules, regulations and restrictions were said to be the same for all troops.

Dubuque had a history of COLORED BASEBALL. The term was used in 1916 to refer to the much anticipated baseball game between the Chicago Leland Giants and the "Black Cats" of Dubuque. The writer of the newspaper column claimed the "smokes" were making a trip through the area and would probably appear on either June 27th or 28th.

Organized labor made its appearance in Iowa during the last decade of the 19th century. Until the 1930s, the Iowa State Federation of Labor, an affiliate of the American Federation of Labor, was the legal representative of organized labor in Iowa and Dubuque. A survey of the Federation's annual proceedings from 1895, when the first convention was held, until the end of WORLD WAR II shows no reference to black workers or their rights. The only statement supporting "equity to all men regardless of class, race, creed or color" was made in 1930 in support of a white labor leader in California.

The black population in Dubuque by 1920 had dropped to 75. The first cross-burnings of the KU KLUX KLAN began in 1923. A huge gathering of Klan members was held off Peru Road in 1925. In 1926 the Klan marched through Dubuque and held another huge Konklave, a mass meeting of their membership, off Peru Road.

Award-winning columnist Nicholas THIMMESCH recounted his days as a groundskeeper around 1940 at the Dubuque baseball field:

          Vagrant blacks were advised to get out of town by sundown as
          they were in many habitats around the farmland...Many Dubuque
          eateries and saloons, especially the second-rate ones, had signs
          in the windows,"We Do Not Cater To Colored Trade. (85)

Anti-discrimination feelings were expressed. Thimmesch remembered teams wanting information about where they could order take-out food. When asked, him would jump in the bus with them and visit CONEY ISLAND where the father of Jim Kerrigan served them at the counter while "white jaws of customers dropped" as the players' food orders were taken and served. (86)

African-American children on a float used in the Under Five Flags Pageant in 1938. Photo courtesy: Timothy Ahlgrim

Prior to WORLD WAR II, African Americans in Dubuque suffered from a lack of representation. Although there had been communication with the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF COLORED PEOPLE (N.A.A.C.P.), the organization's nearest branch was in Waterloo. Public accommodations remained a problem even for the nationally known Duke Ellington Band which was denied a place to stay in the 1930s. For individual cases, a late-night call from the Police Department might be made to a black family asking if they would take in someone turned away from the hotels.

World War II did not bring racial equality although there were improvements thanks to the efforts of Eleanor Roosevelt. The Double V logo was designed by Wilbert L. Holloway, a Pittsburgh Courier staff artist in 1942. The logo, playing upon the V for victory campaign during the war was aimed at promoting victory in the war ... and racial equality at home. African American newspapers across the United States quickly endorsed the campaign and it became a nationwide phenomenon. Lapel pins, stickers, songs and posters promoting the Double V became popular emblems of support.


By the summer of 1942, more than 200,000 individuals paid a nickel each to join Double V clubs. The clubs held rallies and marches to promote the contributions of African Americans in military service and draw attention to discrimination. The Pittsburgh Courier management saw the paper's circulation soar from 200,000 weekly readers to over 2 million by the end of the war.

Even as the movement gained public support, the federal government had a different reaction to the campaign's success. African American newspapers were banned from the libraries of the U. S. Military and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (F.B.I.) sought to charge American publishers for treason.

The reaction of the federal government to American publishers mirrored their reaction to African American sailors who went on strike at Port Chicago on the southern banks of Suisun Bay, northeast of and which flows into San Francisco Bay. African Americans who volunteered for the Navy were given jobs loading ammunition aboard ships without being trained in the loading equipment. Increasing the danger was the fact that two ships were docked side by side while sailors were forced to race to see which ship could be loaded quicker. On July 17, 1944, an explosion rocked San Francisco Bay after an accident occurred at the naval yard. The disaster killed 320 sailors and civilians. (87) One month later, fifty African American sailors on strike protesting the lack of any new safety procedures were found guilty of treason and sentenced to up to eighteen years in prison. News of the conviction and the government's campaign against the Double V program would have necessarily made its way to Dubuque through African American publications printed in the state.

The growth of the Congress of Industrial Organizations (CIO) in Iowa and post-World War II political support of African Americans slowly forced the Iowa State Federation of Labor (ISFL) to change. In 1950 a resolution was adopted that considered "any group of individuals, or organizations, which creates, or fosters racial, religious, or class strike among our people to be un-American, a menace to our liberties, and destructive of our fundamental law." The CIO brought to Dubuque the question of racial equality at work and the need to pass the Fair Employment Practices Law. The organization strongly supported the Supreme Court's ruling in Brown v. Board of Education in 1954 while condemning the slow pace of progress in human relations everywhere in Iowa.

In 1956 the CIO and ISFL and merged with the American Federation of Labor. In their first decade of merger, the organization passed many resolutions dealing with human rights, racial discrimination, and immigrant laborers' legal rights. The organizations' actions on racial equality and protection of human rights lagged from 1968 to 1994 when issues of unemployment, plant closings, and low wages took more attention.

Only a few black families lived in Dubuque during the 1940s and 1950s. Active recruitment of blacks by major industries in Dubuque did not occur until the mid-1970s. Among major employers to move to Dubuque which had a major impact was the JOHN DEERE DUBUQUE WORKS which came to Dubuque in 1946. A cluster of small brick homes known as "John Deere houses" were constructed on the far west side of Dubuque in the HILLCREST HOUSING DEVELOPMENT, but these carried the not-unusual-for-their-time clause in the abstract that the premises would not be sold to blacks. Nonetheless, Deere and Company did attract black employment but until the 1980s black employees at the manufacturing plant never exceeded .25 percent of the workforce.

Efforts at encouraging racial understanding and INTEGRATION began to take place. In 1961 OPERATION FRIENDSHIP was started. In 1962 ten white students from the UNIVERSITY OF DUBUQUE exchanged places with ten black students Johnson C. Smith College in Charlotte, North Carolina for a week. The students from Dubuque declared,"We're not do-gooders. We're here to enjoy it." (87) They were accompanied by Dr. John Knox Coit of the University of Dubuque, a professor of philosophy, who traded places with a professor from the southern college. (88)

In March 1969, Black Student Union members charged LORAS COLLEGE with institutional racism. Among their demands were the removal of the basketball coach and the introduction of African American studies. In May 1969, a Holy Day Mass was disrupted by protesters in support of the Black Student Union. Demands escalated into threats to begin an anti-recruitment drive to convince African Americans not to attend the college.

Rev. Eugene Kutsch had served as the dean of men at Loras from 1956. In 1968 he was approached by fifteen African Americans students belonging to the Black Student Union, a black power organization, with their request to live on the fourth floor of the student dorms. There were also thirty-five whote students who were there by choice. Some belonged to the Students for Reconciliation, a peace group. (89) His approval of their request based on his belief that it was important for them to learn to be proud of their color led to him being fired. A faculty spokesman acknowledged in an article published on July 13, 1969 that "the replacement of Father Kutsch by the administration was not a question of academic or intellectual freedom." An estimated sixty Loras College faculty later that month signed a letter criticizing the college administration for their decision. (90)

In 2015 one of the students, Greg Rhodes, helped by Father Kutsch presented him a plaque honoring him for his efforts at Loras and fairness to students regardless of their race. In the fall of 2020, the Loras Class of 1969 and others planned to unveil a bust of Kutsch honoring him and his work.

Concern about issues facing the city led to the activism of DUBUQUE AREA CITIZEN'S COUNCIL ON COMMUNITY RELATIONS (DACCCR) beginning in 1968.

In November, 1969 with an off-campus African American cultural center a primary demand, angry students barricaded themselves inside Henion Hall. When students involved in the protest were expelled, an estimated one hundred protesters from across the Midwest converged on Dubuque. Seven hours of negotiations led to the students being readmitted to the college under probation. On November 18, 1969, the student body voted "no confidence" in the administration.

Efforts to calm the tense racial atmosphere in Dubuque led the Iowa Civil Rights Commission on December 28, 1969, to investigate charges that African American students had been beaten and were carrying weapons in self-defense. In 1970 Dwight BACHMAN became Dubuque's first civil rights director.

Racial strife in the 1970s included the resignation of the president of the UNIVERSITY OF DUBUQUE after he announced plans to establish a "Culture Center for African American students on campus. William G. CHALMERS stated that racist attitudes among some members of the college administration, students and community had "built to crisis proportions." (90)

Black residents of Dubuque suffered along with the rest of the city during the economic crisis from 1970-1983. By 1983 of the twenty blacks once employed by Deere and Company in Dubuque, only five were still there. (91) In many instances, blacks hired through Affirmative Action in the 1970s lacked seniority and were laid off in the 1980s. Other African Americans asked to be transferred to cities with higher black populations. (92)

African American students attending the UNIVERSITY OF DUBUQUE in 1973 were angered by the suspension of A. J. Stovall, a student accused of assaulting a university official during an argument over a check. African American students demonstrated by blocking the passage to some classes. Stovall was reinstated after a hearing board determined that the administration had violated his due process.

In December 1982, an estimated two hundred fifty protesters marched through Dubuque demanding that city officials work harder to guarantee equal rights. The protest was a response to several incidents. A cross had been burned on the lawn of an African American family and alleged discrimination occurred at the DUBUQUE PACKING COMPANY against Asians, older workers and African Americans.

In 1983 Pierre BANDA, a citizen of Malawi, was elected president of the Loras College senate. The same year tensions rose over the appointment of Clarence W. "Rainbow" DUFFY, associated with the LITTLE DUBLIN NEWS, to the Human Rights Commission.

On April 1, 1988 a cross was burned on the north side of Dubuque.

An announcement was made in December 1989 of plans to establish the 2,00lst chapter of the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF COLORED PEOPLE (N.A.A.C.P.) in Dubuque. Ralph Watkins, University of Dubuque minority counselor, was the interim president. As one of its first activities, the group sponsored a Martin Luther King essay contest in the area schools. The group found support and guidance from many local residents including Ruby SUTTON, Hazel O'NEAL, Gail WEITZ, and Brian BEEKIE.

On October 23, 1989 Raymond and Cynthia Sanders found a charred cross in their garage. An inscription read, "KKK lives." The Sanders had been involved in establishing the local chapter of the NAACP. Mayor James BRADY stated that this action was caused by a lack of racial diversity. (93)

In 1989 the Constructive Integration Task Force, composed of leaders from business, religion, education, and cultural activities submitted a plan to begin integrating Dubuque. Entitled "We Want to Change," the goal was to bring one hundred minority families to Dubuque by 1995. (94) At the time, there were a little more than 300 African Americans living in Dubuque, a city with a population of more than 58,000. (95) The plan stated that it was not written to replace competent workers already in a position with "a person of color."

         It is not the preferential employment of incompetent
         candidates or applicants of inferior quality, but it
         is the aggressive recruitment and employment of highly
         and productive applicants of color for new positions or
         for openings in existing positions. This way we will be 
         alleviating the unnecessary fear of employees that they 
         will lose their present jobs to people of color. (96)

The city's Human Rights Commission signed on, the City Council endorsed it 6-1, major employers lent support, and local colleges offered free master's degrees to minority teachers who would relocate. (97)

Reaction to the task force was strong. Unemployment at the time was 10 percent, the highest in the state. More than 4,000 union workers were furloughed at the JOHN DEERE DUBUQUE WORKS. (98) Debate developed over whether there was too much emphasis on filling a quota. The nine-page integration plan was revised and consolidated to a one-page mission statement in which the objectives were stated as promotion and enhancement of cultural diversity. (99)

Despite the fact that the city modified the proposal so that no public monies were required, the issue of encouraging minority population growth in Dubuque led to violence. On October 24, 1991 threatening racial messages were painted on the walls and doors of CENTRAL ALTERNATIVE HIGH SCHOOL. (100) Cross-burnings resumed. On November 12, 1991 the eighth cross burning since July occurred across the street from 2239 Central, and a brick was thrown through the window. (101) Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (F.B.I.) were already in town after five burned crosses were found on White Street. Uniformed police officers stood guard at DUBUQUE SENIOR HIGH SCHOOL after racial fights broke out. (102)

Dubuque's racial problems attracted a national audience. An appearance on November 6, 1991 on "Donahue," a national television program, was made by Dubuque residents including Dr. Jerome GREER on both sides of the issue. (103) Governor Terry Branstad stated his plans to attend an ecumenical Thanksgiving service in the city. (104) L. Douglas Wilder, governor of Virginia, came to local church services with a victim of vandalism. When Rev. Thomas Robb, national director of the Ku Klux Klan, arrived in Dubuque on November 30, 1991 and staged a demonstration in front of the DUBUQUE CITY HALL, a counter-demonstration in WASHINGTON PARK was arranged by the NAACP. Members of the Guardian Angels arrived in Dubuque from New York City to support diversity. They spoke to students at HOOVER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL and supported civil rights efforts underway in the community. (105) In January 1992 The Nationalist Movement based on Learned, Mississippi petitioned the city for a parade permit as part of its fourth annual Majority Rights Freedom Parade and Rally. (106) The permit was granted and the march occurred on January 18th, but the city and TCI Cablevision of Dubuque resisted the organization's attempts to broadcast its own television program in Dubuque because the program was not produced locally. (107)

Dubuque became the first city in Iowa to actively promote racial and cultural diversity. Attempts to recruit minority teachers to Dubuque public schools brought the district together with the private colleges in 1992 in the Minority teacher Corps program. Through this cooperative project, and black, Asian, Hispanic, or Native American teacher in the district could apply to earn a free master's degree from the Dubuque Tri-College Department of Education. Half of the cost of the degree would be waived once they were given a graduate assistant-ship at one of the three colleges. The other half of the tuition would be paid through the district's Phase III professional development program. The student could only apply for this reimbursement if their graduate program related to teaching. The teacher would take most of the course work during the summer and complete the degree in three years. (108)

Concerned citizens formed a number of groups to promote racial justice. Tom CHURCHILL and Rita Daniels-Churchill organized a group called Dubuque Citizens United for Respect and Equality CURE. In 1992 a number of concerned private citizens created the Dubuque Council for Diversity which replaced the Constructive Integration Task Force. In February during Black History Month, the UNIVERSITY OF DUBUQUE sponsored a panel discussion organized by the University of Dubuque's Black Presidium. One of the speakers encouraged black students to become more active in the community to dispel stereotypes. (109) In July, Karmen Hall Miller was named the Dubuque Council for Diversity's first executive director. (110) Concern for racial tension led the Dubuque Federation of Labor leadership to ask the Labor Center, a non-profit educational organization affiliated with the University of Iowa, to conduct a workshop on racism and bigotry for its members.

Behind the scenes, federal investigators and local police were reviewing past incidents and charging offenders. In 1988 a former Dubuque resident burned a cross on April Fool's Day. The incident was listed in the middle of a list of crimes by the Telegraph Herald. The police investigated and called it a prank. In 1992 the federal investigators found the person who had burned the cross four years earlier. In October 1992, this person was facing ten years in a federal prison and/or a $250,000 fine after admitting to a federal grand jury that he had intended to intimidate blacks from using COMISKEY PARK. A second Dubuque resident was sentenced to two-years in federal prison on another incident. In October 1992 nine cases had been taken to court, but six cross-burning cases remained to be solved along with racist graffiti at FLORA PARK and near a statue in JACKSON PARK. (111)

On January 13, 1993 a scuffle outside OLD SHANG (THE) triggered a break in the black community just before the celebration of the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King. In previous weeks, complaints of drug use and prostitution had been made about the area surrounding OLD SHANG (THE). On the early morning of the 13th a scuffle in the area resulted in the arrest of five young black men. On January 15th, it was announced that Ernestine MOSS, president of the local chapter of the N.A.A.C.P., had set up a task force to investigate charges of police harassment of black citizens. Chief of Police John J. MAUSS said he would cooperate. On the day of the arrests, a small group of blacks staged brief protests at the courthouse and Dubuque Law Enforcement Center. No time table to report the findings of the task force were set. (112)

When the local chapter of the N.A.A.C.P. celebrated King's birthday and marched down Locust Street carrying a sign proclaiming,"The dream lives on through the Dubuque chapter of the NAACP," about a dozen young blacks boycotted the activity. Standing on street corners near ST. MARK COMMUNITY CENTER, they held signs advertising another birthday celebration the following day. Spokespersons for this group said the local NAACP had "sold out to the police." (113)

Curtis Cheers, of the protesting group, invited Ernestine Moss and Ruth Anderson, NAACP Iowa-Nebraska Conference president of the NAACP, to the second celebration. Both attended. There was no mention of the difficulties between the protestors and the local NAACP chapter. (114)

The reaction to the task force press conference on January 19th was generally one of criticism. Specific people, such as the young blacks who said they were mistreated in the Old Shang incident, were not contacted nor were those who might have been witnesses. The investigation was opened to anyone who knew of cases of police harassment in Dubuque. Tom Churchill, president of CURE, noted,..."it's plain to see why people don't think the local NAACP is effective." Curtis Cheers remarked that the NAACP's response was "a good statement, but I feel it's a late statement. They should have said all this last week." (114)

On January 26, 1993 the local chapter of the N.A.A.C.P. met with Ina Boon, a regional director for the N.A.A.C.P. and young blacks who told of police harassment, landlord problems, and frustrations in dealing with city officials. Several times Ms. Boon repeated the statement,"Racism is riding high in Dubuque." She sided with the blacks who complained and stated they were not "part of the criminal element." At the end of the meeting, the local chapter promised to be more effective in living up to its name which meant quicker responses to charges of racism and an outreach to the Dubuque area minority youth. (115) Boon's description of the youth involved in the Old Shang incident as "not being a criminal element" was challenged, in some cases, by Dubuque District and Associate Court records. (116)

On February 4, 1993 Police Chief Mauss cleared the department of any wrongdoing in the Old Shang incident and even commended the officers involved. The internal investigation involved reviewing radio transmissions from the scene, reports of the seven officers, two supervisors, a shift commanded and three sheriff's deputies. Eight civilian witnesses were also interviewed. Ruth Anderson immediately responded in a statement prepared by CURE, "They've got their minds made up and are going to say what they believe, irrespective of what the facts are." William Whitcomb, conciliation specialist with the U. S. Department of Justice, was expected to meet with several people in Dubuque including Mauss, Dubuque County attorney's office staff, local officials of the N.A.A.C.P., and the city manager. (117)

The local N.A.A.C.P. continued to be split with dissension. Ernestine Moss stated that Tom Churchill had no right to speak for the organization. He had resigned his earlier membership in the group, had never served on any committee, and had only returned to actively attending meetings for a few months. Churchill replied that someone had to speak for the N.A.A.C.P. because Moss wasn't. "If she isn't saying what I've been saying then she's out of step with the N.A.A.C.P." (118)

Ruth Anderson, regional president of the N.A.A.C.P., entered the debate squarely against Moss. Accusing the local leaders of needing to learn how to run a branch of the national organization, Anderson claimed if Moss had a copy of the "white book," administrative procedures required of all branches, she was not using it. Anderson claimed that the local branch had not, to her knowledge, adopted a set of bylaws and sent them to the national. She further claimed that most of the chapter's committees had only one member appointed by the president. She went on to state that Churchill had followed proper procedures by requesting in writing participation in the legal redress, political action and media committees. Under national bylaws, the local president could not prevent any member from participating on a committee. She informed both Moss and Churchill she did not want to be placed in the center of a power struggle for control of the local. (119)

Despite her statement, Anderson wrote a letter in February to William Penn, N.A.A.C.P. director of branches, and sent a petition requesting "Section 10" action--suspension of all Dubuque local officers and committee chairpersons. She claimed the local leaders, especially Ernestine Moss were "among the least effective she's ever seen," charged the branch "discredited" young blacks who sought help filing a complaint about police harassment and brutality, and pressured those who signed a petition for a new election to recant. (120) On March 10, 1993 regional N.A.A.C.P. leader Ina Boon, had not been given formal notice of any action by the national, but Tom Churchill and Ruth Anderson announced that the December election of local N.A.A.C.P. officials would be suspended and a new election called. Present officers could be replaced to re-elected. Ernestine Moss replied that she had not been informed of any action. (121)

Sylvester Grady, the immediate past president of the Iowa-Nebraska State Conference of Branches of the N.A.A.C.P., and Tom Churchill held a meeting on March 14, 1993 billed as a chance for Grady to explain N.A.A.C.P. organization. Grady spent most of the meeting describing the local chapter as "a divided mess" until he was interrupted by Robert Day. Day informed Grady that the branch had just completed a memorandum of understanding with the police department.

                 "We could not have done that if we weren't together. 
                 You (Grady) have been misinformed, sir, and you've 
                 been used." 

After the meeting, members expressed their support of Moss. (123)

On March 15, 1993 Tom Churchill and Karen O'ROURKE held a press conference to discuss the Memorandum of Understanding that established an advisory panel to hear complaints about the DUBUQUE POLICE DEPARTMENT. O'Rourke called for Ernestine Moss to resign as branch president of the N.A.A.C.P.,"if she really cared about the (organization). Churchill also announced, without Moss' participation, his organization of a Dubuque youth N.A.A.C.P. youth branch and criticized her for not having had one established. Moss rejected the call for her to resign, received a 43-0 resolution of support from the membership of the local branch, and pointed out the Youth Tree program for youth developed with the YW-YMCA. (124)

In June 1993 members of the Iowa Advisory Committee to the Civil Rights Commission presented their report entitled, "A Time to Heal Race Relations in Dubuque, Iowa." Issued just over a year after committee members heard from 33 people who testified about racism in the city, the report concluded that better communications were needed. It also stated that a wide segment of the community was needed to address problems that surface during hard economic times. Both the Dubuque Human Rights Commission and the Dubuque Council for Diversity were thought to have much of the responsibility for problem-solving. The report concluded that many of the racism problems happened because of poor communication about the Constructive Integration Plan. "Racism demagogues took advantage of the situation," according to one of the committee members. (125)

During the summer of 1993, the City of Dubuque trained landlord "testers" to see whether specific landlords were practicing housing discrimination. Claiming that the program was not entrapment, city officials said testing protected landlords from unfair discrimination charges. An individual was only tested after a complaint had been received. State officials, however, randomly tested landlords. Landlords found guilty of discrimination faced fines between $10,000 and $50,000 for each violation based on the number of previous violations. (126)

Jack Hanson, press chairman of the Dubuque N.A.A.C.P., announced in June, 1993 that the Dubuque branch was one of thirty-six nationwide to receive the Thalheimer Award. President Ernestine Moss would be accepting the award on behalf of the local branch at the July 15, 1993 Fight for Freedom Fund dinner at the NAACP's national convention in Indianapolis. A spokesperson for the national organization said the award was given to branches for outstanding activities and organizational standards. Among the activities cited were the local's negotiation of a memorandum of understanding with the city and its police department and the establishment of a task force to investigate complaints of police harassment of minorities. (127) It was later announced that the local branch would also receive the Freedom Fund Award for its fund-raising contributions to the national organization. (128)

News that the N.A.A.C.P had ordered a new election of officers for the Dubuque branch was not announced until July 7, 1993. Elections procedure issues leading to the new elections included the appointment rather than the election of nominating committee members, not accepting nominations from the floor for elections (which Moss denied), and three instead of twelve to twenty-four at-large members on the executive committee. (129) On July 26, 1993 it was announced that the national organization had chosen to appoint an outside administrator to operate the Dubuque branch because of internal difficulties. (130)

Efforts to improve racial harmony continued. In 1994 the Dubuque Community Advisory Panel was established to deal with the review of discrimination or civil rights complaints against the Dubuque Police Department. The Panel, headed by Terry HARRMANN, was formed in response to complaints of the local chapter of the NAACP that police officers were harassing black men. Through the efforts of Ruby Sutton and other community leaders, the Dubuque Council for Diversity was created to draw up plans for education, mediation services, and partnerships with national diversity organizations. There was also to be training and the establishment of a data bank for employers seeking minority employees. The DUBUQUE COMMUNITY SCHOOL DISTRICT developed its own multicultural and non-sexist plan administered by Thomas DETERMAN.

According to the 2001 State of Black Iowa Report, the "black church remains the most powerful, respected, and revered institution in the black community. It represented a "preponderance" of black capital and financial holdings. According to Rev. Robert "J.J. Kimble of Dubuque,

                  The church was the political voice, the educational support, and 
                  the family encourager. Because of tremendous needs in the community, 
                  the black church is forced to live out the social gospel--to feed 
                  the hungry and heal the sick and offer clothing and shelter. (131)

Social service organizations experienced dramatic growth in black clientele between 2000 and 2002. OPERATION NEW VIEW officials saw nearly a 75% grow in its participants with many coming in for heating assistance. That program, originally called Low-Income Home Energy Assistance helped 3,587 households with heating costs between October 2001 and March 2002 including 109 black households. The DUBUQUE VISITING NURSE ASSOCIATION saw an estimated 30% of the 2,000 child health service requests from black families. On any given day as many as 60% of the children using the DUBUQUE BOYS/GIRLS CLUB were African American. Four Oaks-Cornerstone saw its number of black clients remain steady. African Americans made up 11% of the adults and 24% of the children in its services. Another agency with a steady number of clients was HILLCREST FAMILY SERVICES which administered the Women, Infacts and Children (WIC) nutritional program. In 2001 Hillcrest served 88 black families with 76 in 2002. Black families in 2002 were not showing a great deal of interest in the St. Mark Community Center's after-school program which had mostly Hispanic children enrolled. (132)

In 2013 officials of the U. S. Department of Housing and Urban Development charged that the city of Dubuque discriminated against African-Americans in the administration of its Section 8 rental assistance program. HUD's report claimed that city officials made policy changes starting in 2007 that gave white applicants preference over blacks, at a time when the public was concerned about an "influx" of minorities moving to the predominantly white city. (133)

When racial tensions erupted in 2009, the report said, and city officials took even more aggressive steps to favor whites over blacks in awarding vouchers. The city reduced the number of vouchers from 1,076 to 900, eliminated a preference for very low-income residents and emptied its waiting list of hundreds of applicants. The changes had the impact of favoring applicants from Dubuque or elsewhere in Iowa, which is 91 percent white, while denying benefits to blacks from Chicago, who had been among the most frequent applicants. (134)

City officials claimed the changes were to answer funding concerns about the program and to improve its administration. The review, however, said it found no evidence to back up those claims, and that the policies "were designed to change the racial composition of the Section 8 waiting list and program admissions." The black population in Dubuque more than tripled from 2000 to 2010 was equal to four percent of the population.

        Officials of the City knew the numbers of persons 
        applying to the program from outside of Iowa were 
        from Chicago, and were disproportionately African 
        American, and took the foregoing actions with the 
        intent to limit the ability of these applicants to 
        participate in the program so as to address City 
        residents' discriminatory perceptions on crime and 
        race." (135)

On April 13, 2016 two "crudely constructed" crosses were discovered that had appeared to be burned. This was a very unwelcome reminder of the period from 1988 to 1993 when at least fourteen cross burnings were reported in the city. City officials and community leaders were quick in condemning the action as police and F. B. I. agents continued their investigation. (136) On April 17, 2016 an estimated two hundred citizens gathered at the site of the cross-burnings at 22nd and Washington to promote peace of reconciliation. (137)

In the early 1990s, Dubuque had an estimated 330 black residents, but in the decade from 2000 to 2010, African-Americans surged by more than 200 percent. In 2016 are were more than 2,300 blacks in Dubuque, according to the latest Census data, representing 5 percent of residents. More than half lived in poverty and heir unemployment rate (16.9 percent) was three times higher than that of whites (5.5 percent). (138)

Arrests of black males in Dubuque declined in recent years, but blacks in 2016 made up 23 percent of arrests in a five-year span from 2009 to 2013. Police Chief Dalsing studied arrests in 2013 and found that 66 percent were initiated by calls from citizens, not by the officers themselves. He acknowledged that crime was concentrated on the city's east side, patrolled by a predominantly white police force (three black and three Hispanic officers among more than 100). (139)

On June 19, 2017 area residents celebrated Juneteenth. The celebration dated from June 19, 1865 when Major General Gordon Granger and his Union soldiers spread the news that slaves were free. This was two years after the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation. In Dubuque, the eighth annual celebration organized by the MULTICULTURAL FAMILY CENTER was held at Comiskey Park. Offering games and a new event--a talent show--, the event, according to organizers offered an opportunity to build community around recognition of the progress made in civil rights. (140)

In March 2019, city council members reviewed the results of the 2018 Community Perceptions Survey, the second conducted by Loras College's Public Opinion Survey Center in conjunction with the Great Dubuque Development Corporation. Among the findings was that 79% of the respondents felt Dubuque was a food place to live and 75% felt Dubuque was "on the right track." Respondents overwhelmingly (96%) felt safe in their own neighborhoods, but only 51% felt safe downtown despite decreasing crime and shots fired statistics. Of the black respondents, 62% felt that race relations was the biggest challenge for Dubuque with 56% believing the community had no been responsible to race relations issues. Among all respondents, 70% agreed that diversity was beneficial to the community. Median household income results found that white residents in 2017 earned $52,346 while the median income for black residents was $14,818. It appeared from the survey that ore work had to be done to make sure minority populations were aware of programs meant to assist them. (141)

In June, 2019 despite a strong economy, black residents continued to have above-average rates of unemployment. This was a conclusion of a report entitled "Building a Lattice to Success, Workforce Inclusion and Community Co-Creation in Dubuque, Iowa" completed by Massachusetts Institute of Technology graduates working in conjunction with the COMMUNITY FOUNDATION OF GREATER DUBUQUE. Researchers stated their "amazement" by the number of programs existing to help people in need, but that the system appeared quite complex which could lead to difficult for those wishing to use it." They concluded that there needed to be opportunities for "transitional employment" which could build work experience and that local community and business leaders seemed genuinely interested and committed to diversity and equity. Home ownership in Dubuque was 67% for whites, a slight increase since 2017. Black home ownership, however, fell to 8%, down from 10% for the same period. (188) In 2020 the latest census figures suggested that while accounting for about 4% of Dubuque's population, an estimated 60% African Americans living in the city lived in poverty. (142)

Amid the chaos of the PANDEMIC that spread across the United States in early 2020, the killing of George Floyd on May 25th by a Minneapolis, Minnesota police officer sparked protest and riots across the United States in May and early June. On June 9th members of the Dubuque Human Rights Commission praised local protesters, advocated for police policy reforms and focused on the need for continued conversations on race.

Anthony Allen, president of the Dubuque branch of the N.A.A.C.P. and the chairman of the commission was encouraged by the number of participants, especially the young, he had not seen before.

Commission members had previously been presented with a multi-point proposal supported by multiple Iowa lawmakers aimed at preventing violent conflicts between law enforcement and Iowa residents. As part of the plan, county attorneys and the state attorney general would have the power to investigate police misconduct. Legislation would also prohibit police departments from rehiring officers who had been fired or who had resigned while being investigated for serious misconduct or excessive use of force. The plan would ban police choke holds or other neck restraints unless a person posed an imminent threat of death or injury to the officer. The contents of the plan were supported by Dubuque Police Chief Mark Dalsing. (143)

Solidarity Mural

In response to the racial equality protests across the United States in the spring of 2020, the “SOLIDARITY” mural was completed on July 2 on the Main Street side of Five Flags Center.

In the mural measuring 28 feet high and 105 feet wide, artist Shelby Fry showed support for the Black Lives Matter movement and other segments of the community to promote unity. Some of the symbols used as letters were meant to include those with disabilities (the wheelchair symbol), brain health issues (the first “i,” which is a semicolon, which are commonly associated with brain health), LGBTQ community (the rainbow “D”) and transgendered individuals (the symbol serving as the “y”).

Racial unrest nationally in 2020 was caused the deaths of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor. Floyd died after a white police officer held his knee on Floyd's neck for nearly nine minutes in Minneapolis. Taylor, a 26-year old EMT in Kentucky, was shot when police burst into her apartment using a no-knock warrant. On August 23 Jacob Blake in Kenosha, Wisconsin survived seven shots in the back by white police officers in front of his children, but was left paralyzed from the waist down. In Kenosha protests after the shooting, Joseph Rosenbaum and Anthony Huber were shot and killed. Sponsored by the Switching Places Foundation, a march in protest of these and other killings was held in Dubuque along Grandview Avenue on September 2, 2020. An estimated three hundred people of all races and genders participated in the event to protest social injustice. (144)

Addressing the sins of the past led to shocking news to the students of LORAS COLLEGE and the Dubuque community on September 9, 2020. Research of Mathias Loras' history before and after he arrived in Dubuque confirmed his purchase of an enslaved woman named Marie Louise while he was living in Mobile, Alabama. She remained enslaved from 1836 to 1852. Loras left her behind when he moved to Iowa, but used the money he received from her labor to help finance his work in Iowa. A statue of Loras was removed from campus after school officials learned this information and a member of Loras College's history faculty confirmed the facts were indisputable.

In a letter to the campus community on September 9th, Loras College President James COLLINS stated that the statue would be placed in storage while the campus and alumni community and board gave their input on its future. (145) The board announced the creation of a scholarship fund honoring Mary Louise's legacy starting in the 2021-22 school year. A second scholarship fund would be created to honor Loras' first Black graduate and fifth Black priest to be ordained in the United States, the Rev. Norman Dukette ('22) effective with the 2021-22 school year. (146)

COMISKEY PARK was the scene on June 18th, 2022 of the twelfth annual Juneteenth event. The nationwide observance commemorated the freedom of formerly enslaved black people in the United States and recognized the date in 1865 when African Americans in Galveston, Texas were told they were free...two years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed. More than two hundred attended the festivity which offered lawn games and community booths. (147)





1. Chaichian, Mohammad A. White Racism on the Western Urban Frontier-Dynamics of Race and Class in Dubuque Iowa (1800-2000), Trenton NJ: Africa World Press, Inc. 2006, p. 58

2. Veen, Alice Hoyt, "Iowa African American Heritage," Prairie Roots Research, Online: http://www.prairierootsresearch.com/black-history-month/

3. “Mayors of the City of Dubuque, Iowa,” City of Dubuque, http://www.cityofdubuque.org/DocumentCenter/Home/View/2977.

4. George Wallace Jones to Jefferson Davis, 5/17/1861, holograph, George Wallace Jones Vertical File, Center for Dubuque History, Loras College.

5. Chaichian, p. 85

6. Ibid. p.86

7. Ibid.

8. Ibid. p. 60

9. Ibid.

10. Ibid. p. 61

11. Chaichian, p. 75

12. Ibid.

13. Ibid.

14. Ibid. p. 82

15. "Free Blacks Coming North," Dubuque Herald, April 23, 1861, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18610423&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

16. "All for the (Word Removed)," Dubuque Herald, March 16, 1862, p 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18620316&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

17. "1st Regiment Iowa Volunteer Infantry-African Descent," IaGenweb. Online: http://iagenweb.org/civilwar/regiment/infantry/01stA/history.htm

18. "List of United States Colored Troops Civil War Units," Wikipedia. Online: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_States_Colored_Troops_Civil_War_units

19. "An Army of Two Hundred Thousand Blacks," Dubuque Herald, May 31, 1863, p. 2

20. Ibid.

21. "Editorial," Dubuque Herald, April 5, 1863, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18630405&printsec=frontpage&hl=e

22. Logan, Guy E. "Roster and Record of Iowa Troops in the Rebellion," Vol. 5 First Regiment Iowa African Infantry. IaGenWeb. Online: http://iagenweb.org/civilwar/books/logan/mil718.htm

23. Brodnax, Robert Sr. "Will They Fight? Ask the Enemy: Iowa's African American Regiment in the Civil War," The Annals of Iowa, State Historical Society of Iowa, Vol. 66, No. 3, p. 6. Online: https://ir.uiowa.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1140&context=annals-of-iowa

24. "Happy Are We, Darkies. So Gay," Dubuque Democratic Herald, September 10, 1864, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=A36e8EsbUSoC&dat=18640910&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

25. "Street Lamps Opaque," Dubuque Democratic Herald, December 17, 1864, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=A36e8EsbUSoC&dat=18641217&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

26. "A Black Broker," Dubuque Democratic Herald, October 15, 1864, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=A36e8EsbUSoC&dat=18641015&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

27. "The Charity of Color," Dubuque Democratic Herald, December 15, 1864, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=A36e8EsbUSoC&dat=18641215&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

28. "Negro Suffrage Tonight," Dubuque Herald, September 13, 1865, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18650913&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

29. "The Negro Suffrage Fizzle," Dubuque Herald, September 13, 1865, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18650913&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

30. "Commendable Sympathy," Dubuque Daily Herald, September 28, 1866, p. 3. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18660928&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

34. "Helping the Blacks," Dubuque Daily Herald, September 30, 1866, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18660930&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

35. "Struck for Wages, Dubuque Herald, July 24, 1866, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18660724&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

36. "Negro Crews Coming," Dubuque Herald, July 31, 1866, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18660731&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

37. "A Black Floater," Dubuque Herald, August 12, 1866, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18660812&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

38. "Shades Departing," Dubuque Herald, December 6, 1865, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18651206&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

39. "White and Black Strikes," Dubuque Herald, September 27, 1866, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18660927&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

40. Ibid.

41. "Negroes at Hotel Tables," Dubuque Herald, December 29, 1865, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18651229&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

42. "A Colored Petition," Dubuque Herald, February 2, 1866, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18660202&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

43. "A Branch of the Freedman's Bureau," Dubuque Herald, March 7, 1866, p. 4. Online:https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18660307&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

44. "A Time Line of Iowa's Civil Rights History," Online: http://www.cityofdubuque.org/DocumentCenter/Home/View/1178

45. "The Christian Recorder," Accessible Archives. Online: http://www.accessible-archives.com/collections/african-american-newspapers/the-christian-recorder/

46. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, January 31, 1873, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18730131&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

47. "An African Departure," Dubuque Herald, May 5, 1873, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18730506&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

48. "A Colored Knot," Dubuque Herald, July 1, 1873, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18730701&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

49. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, August 24, 1873, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18730824&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

50. "Meeting of Colored Citizens," Dubuque Herald, July 22, 1875, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18750722&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

51. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, July 27, 1875, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18750727&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

52. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, August 3, 1876, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18760803&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

53. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, January 20, 1876, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18760120&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

54. "The Schools," Dubuque Herald, August 17, 1876, p. 4

55. "De Gentleman Ob Color," Dubuque Herald, February 11, 1877, p. 4

56. Ibid.

57. "The Election," Dubuque Herald, November 10, 1876, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18761110&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

58. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, December 21, 1876. p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18761221&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

59. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, August 21, 1877, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18770821&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

60. "Purchase of a Church," Dubuque Herald, September 7, 1877, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18770907&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

61. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, October 9, 1877, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18771009&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

62. "Dark Doings," Dubuque Herald, August 2, 1878, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18780802&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

63. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, January 6, 1878, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18780106&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

64. "The Colored Church," Dubuque Herald, February 19, 1878, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18780219&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

65. "Bob Lynch, the Colored Barber, Chosen as a Petit Juror," Dubuque Herald, December 15, 1878, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18781215&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

66. "Caught on the Fly," Dubuque Herald, April 6, 1879, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18790406&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

67. Editorial, The Daily Herald, June 27, 1879, p. 2. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18790627&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

68. "Help A Good Cause," Dubuque Herald, August 12, 1880, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=uh8FjILnQOkC&dat=18800812&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

69. "Miscellaneous," The Bolivar Bulletin, September 21, 1882, p. 1. Online: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85033306/1882-09-21/ed-1/seq-1/#date1=1850&sort=relevance&rows=20&words=Dubuque+negro&searchType=basic&sequence=0&index=1&state=&date2=1900&proxtext=Dubuque+negroes&y=11&x=16&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=2

70. "Local News in Brief," Dubuque Daily Herald, July 27, 1890, p. 8. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18900727&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

71. Cited

72. "Colored Convention," Dubuque Daily Herald, September 16, 1890, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18900916&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

73. "Liberians for License," Dubuque Daily Herald, September 17, 1890, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18900917&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

74. Ibid.

75. "Sable Sons of Senegambia," Dubuque Daily Herald, August 2, 1891, p. 4. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=_OG5zn83XeQC&dat=18910802&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

76. "Among the Breakers," Dubuque Daily Herald, November 29, 1893, p. 4.

77. Untitled. Iowa State Bystander, August 10, 1894, p. 1. Online: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83025186/1894-08-10/ed-1/seq-1/#date1=1850&index=1&rows=20&words=Dubuque+Negro&searchType=basic&sequence=0&state=Iowa&date2=1900&proxtext=Dubuque+negroes&y=0&x=0&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=1

78. "Married at Guttenberg," Dubuque Daily Herald, April 11, 1894, p. 4

79. "Municipal Molecules," Dubuque Daily Herald, April 26, 1894, p. 4

80. "Municipal Molecules, Dubuque Daily Herald, August 1, 1894, p. 4

81. "Municipal Molecules," Dubuque Daily Herald, August 16, 1894, p. 4

82. "Clubs Organized," Dubuque Daily Herald, September 19, 1896, p. 8

83. "Color Question Up," Evening Times (Marshalltown, IA) Republican, December 15, 1905, p. 2. Online: http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85049554/1905-12-15/ed-1/seq-2/#date1=1890&sort=relevance&rows=20&words=Dubuque+Negro&searchType=basic&sequence=0&index=2&state=Iowa&date2=1922&proxtext=Dubuque+negroes&y=0&x=0&dateFilterType=yearRange&page=2

84. "Dubuque Negroes Are Appointed," Dubuque Telegraph-Herald, July 11 1911, p. 10

85. Thimmesch, Nick. "Baseball Boobery," Lodi News-Sentinel, October 10, 1978, p. 6. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2245&dat=19781010&id=1JQzAAAAIBAJ&sjid=QDIHAAAAIBAJ&pg=6905,4267876&hl=en

86. Ibid.

87. Port Chicago Naval Magazine, National Park Service, Online: https://www.nps.gov/poch/index.htm

88. "Negro, Iowa College Students Exchange," The Sunday Times (Spencer, Iowa), April 3, 1962, p. 3. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=2350&dat=19620403&id=v3wpAAAAIBAJ&sjid=O_4EAAAAIBAJ&pg=3543,122046&hl=en

89. Rhodes, Greg, "'Black Power Experiment' at Loras," Telegraph-Herald, October 6, 1968, p. 1

90. Mehl, Annie, "'He Gave Up His Career for His Beliefs,'" Telegraph Herald, July 4, 2020, p. 1A

91 Wanamaker, Dave. "Dubuque: Diversity/Healing" Julien's Journal, January 1993, p. 29

92. Feagin, Joe R.; Vera, Hernan; Batur, Pinar. White Racism: The Basics, New York: Routledge, 2001, p. 39

93. Wanamaker, p. 29

94. Ibid.

95. Ibid.

96. Landry

97 Ibid.

98. Wanamaker. p. 30

99. "Cross Burning Sentence Given," The Daily Reporter (Spencer, Iowa), July 29, 1992, p. 2. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=1907&dat=19920729&id=uF0rAAAAIBAJ&sjid=89kEAAAAIBAJ&pg=1646,3931069&hl=en

100. Webber, Steve. "Hate Crime," Telegraph Herald, November 12, 1991, p. 1

101. Ibid.

102. Wilkinson, Isabel. "Seeking a Racial Mix, Dubuque Finds Tension," New York Times, Nov. 3, 1991, Online: http://www.nytimes.com/1991/11/03/us/seeking-a-racial-mix-dubuque-finds-tension.html

103. Ibid., p. 29

104. "Racial Tension Smolders in City Once Tagged 'Selma of the North': Integration: Plan to Bring more Minorities to Dubuque, Iowa, Has Triggered Confrontation and Cross-Burnings," Los Angeles Times Nov. 24, 1991, Online: http://articles.latimes.com/1991-11-24/news/mn-133_1_integration-plan/2

105. Lyon. Teacher at Hoover School who invited the group

106. Bagsarian, Tom. "Parade Law Irks White Activists," Telegraph Herald, January 1, 1992, p. 3A. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19920101&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

107. Batio, Christopher. "White Supremacist Threatens Suit," Telegraph Herald, Feb. 10, 1992. p. 3A

108. Hanson, Lyn. "Minorities Offered Free Education Plan," Telegraph Herald, April 28, 1992, p. 3A. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19920428&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

109. Bagsarian, "Speaker Urges Blacks to Get Involved," Telegraph Herald, February 28, 1992, p. 3A. Online: https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=aEyKTaVlRPYC&dat=19920228&printsec=frontpage&hl=en

110. Chaichian, p. 179

111. The Associated Press. "Feds: Dubuque had Bias against Blacks in Housing," Times-Republican, June 22, 2013, Online: http://www.timesrepublican.com/page/content.detail/id/561337/Feds--Dubuque-had-bias-against-blacks-in-housing.html?nav=5005

112. Bagsarian, Tom. "NAACP to Probe Racism Charge," Telegraph Herald, January 15, 1993, p. 1

113. Hanson, Lyn. "Young Blacks Protest NAACP," Telegraph Herald, January 18, 1993, p. 3A

114. Bagsarian, Tom. "Differences Overcome for King Rally," Telegraph Herald, January 19, 1993, p. 1

115. Hanson, Lyn. "NAACP Launches Probe Amid Criticism," Telegraph Herald, January 20, 1993, p. 1

116. Bagasarian, Tom and Hanson, Lyn. "Blacks Tell About Dubuque Racism," Telegraph Herald, January 27, 1993, p. 1

118. Bagasarian, Tom. "Blacks in Protests Have Police Records," Telegraph Herald, January 30, 1993, p. 3A

117. Bagsarian, Tom. "Mauss Clears Police of Racial Complaints," Telegraph Herald, February 4, 1993, p. 1

118. Hanson, Lyn. "Who Speaks for N.A.C.C.P.?" Telegraph Herald, February 5, 1993, p. 1.

119. Hanson, Lyn. "NAACP Leader Rips Local Branch," Telegraph Herald, February 6, 1993, p. 1

120. Hanson, Lyn. "NAACP Asked to Clean House," Telegraph Herald, February 17, 1993, p. 1

121. Hanson, Lyn. "NAACP Chapter's Election Results Challenged," Telegraph Herald, March 10, 1993, p. 1

124. Krapfl, Mike. "Meeting Targets Local NAACP Chapter," Telegraph Herald, March 14, 1993, p. 3A

125. Bagsarian, Tom. "Mixed Reviews for NAACP, Police Memorandum," Telegraph Herald, March 16, 1993, p. 3A

126. Bagsarian, Tom. "'Next Step Up to Dubuquers,'" Telegraph Herald, June 18, 1993, p. 3A

127. Eiler, Donnelle. "Dubuque to Train Landlord 'Testers,'" Telegraph Herald, June 2, 1993, p. 1

128. Jerde, Lyn Hanson. "NAACP Chapter Honored," Telegraph Herald, June 22, 1993, p. 3A

129. Hanson, Lyn. "Moss Hopes to Win N.A.A.C.P. Presidency Again," Telegraph Herald, July 8, 1993, p. 3A

130. Jerde, Lyn Hanson. "New Election Ordered for NAACP Officers," Telegraph Herald, July 7, 1993, p. 3A

131. "NAACP to Name Outside Administrator for Dubuque," Telegraph Herald, July 26, 1993, p. 3A

132. Bagsarian. October 4, 1992

133. Nevans-Pederson, Mary, "Church a Pllar of Strength in Black Community," Telegraph Herald, March 23, 2002, p. 1A

134. Hogstrom, Erik, "Social Service Agencies Report Increases in Blacks Receiving Aid," Telegraph Herald, March 22, 2002, p. 1

135. Bagsarian. October 4, 1992

136. "Dubuque, Iowa Officials Admit To Housing Discrimination Against Blacks," WQOK FM HipHopNC.com Online: http://hiphopnc.com/5509787/dubuque-iowa-officials-admit-to-housing-discrimination-against-blacks/

137. Petrus, Jillian. "Dubuque Racial Profiling Debate Gets Heated at Public Meeting," KCRG.com Online: http://www.kcrg.com/news/local/Dubuque-Racial-Profiling-Debate-Gets-Heated-at-Public-Meeting-162165105.html

138. "Police Consider Cross Burnings a Hate Crime," Tri-State Week in Review, Telegraph Herald, April 17, 2016, p. 23A

139. Hogstrom, Erik. "Dubuquers Line Up for Unity," Telegraph Herald, April 18, 2016, p. 1.

140. Munson, Kyle. "Cross Burnings in Dubuque Show City Still in Turmoil Over Race," Des Moines Register, April 22, 2016, Online: http://www.desmoinesregister.com/story/news/local/kyle-munson/2016/04/22/cross-burnings-dubuque-show-city-still-turmoil-over-race/83229444/

141. Ibid.

142. Franklin, Vanessa. "Dubuque Event About Celebrating Freedom, Building Community," Telegraph Herald, June 18, 2017, p. 13A

143. Kruse, John, "Council Ponders Perceptions," Telegraph Herald, March 12, 2019, p. 1

144. Jacobson, Ben, "Study: Black Dubuquers Struggle With Unemployment, Telegraph Herald, June 16, 2019, p. 15A

145. Barton, Thomas J., "Dream Center's $276,000 Boost Coming True," Telegraph Herald, July 11, 2020, p. 1A

146. Montgomery, Jeff, "Human Rights Agency Pushes for Change," Telegraph Herald, June 9, 2020, p. 1A

147. Kruse, John, "Event Spurs Discussions on Local Race Relations," Telegraph Herald, September 3, 2020, p. 1A

148. Hinga, Allie, "Loras Removes Statue,"

149. Nieland, Grace, "Community, Education Key to Juneteenth in Dubuque," Telegraph Herald, June 19, 2022, p. 1A