Mapping the Racist History of Real Estate in New Deal America

The Mapping Inequality website documents how the liberal ideals of the New Deal devolved into discrimination and inequality.

1 minute read

October 20, 2016, 6:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell


"The maps in this post are part of a grim history," according to an article by Greg Miller. "They were created by a government program in the 1930s and played a role in keeping African Americans and other minorities from owning property in American cities, thereby leaving an indelible mark on the racial and economic history of the United States."

The Mapping Inequality project has gathered these maps and documents, the work of the Home Owners' Loan Corporation (HOLC) during the Great Depression, and placed them online.

Miller explains more of the redlining history of the HOLC, while also sampling specific case studies from cities included in the Mapping Inequality archive—cities such as Los Angeles, Seattle, Wichita, and Portland.    

As acknowledged on the Mapping Inequality website, the project combines the work of researchers and students at the University of Richmond, the University of Maryland, Virginia Tech, and Johns Hopkins University.

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