Sharing Chicago’s Stories Every Day
Following the 1968 assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., much of the city’s West and South Sides were destroyed by riots. When those riots ended, so did most of the recorded histories of these communities, including those of East Garfield Park. Local organizations and residents strive to rewrite the narrative about their community.
The Chicago History Museum and Breakthrough, a social service provider in the East Garfield Park neighborhood, have helped to capture their stories.
40 Blocks: East Garfield Park
Middle and high school students mentored by film and sound professionals conducted interviews to uncover experiences of long-time community residents, leaders, art activists, coaches, and others. They heard about contemporary issues—poverty, education, gentrification, racism, police brutality, community investment, drugs, family structure, and youth involvement and were able to historically root these problems and inquire about the future of the neighborhood.
This project aims to share the stories of East Garfield Park and to contribute to a deeper understanding of Chicago through the perspectives of a community often overlooked. Watch the documentary.