Life as an African American in New York City in the 1900’s Serena Hamilton
Colorado Technical University Online
Professor John Ragan
January 8, 2009
Life as an African American in New York City in the 1900’s Imagine an environment where people are trying to have a better life. I work for a rich family in Manhattan. I am blessed to be born with a natural musical ability; though I cannot read or write I can sit down at a piano and play as though I have been formerly trained. Employed by a family that values my musical gift; I teach their three daughters piano in exchange for a very modest salary and learning how to read and write. I am treated well in the confines of their homes but when guest are over I am treated differently. I live in Harlem in a small apartment; I am saving to one day go to college and become a music teacher. Harlem is like a melting pot for African Americans escaping the harshness of the south. Equality is still a long way from being achieved. Sometimes here in Harlem it feels like we have been brought to just another plantation. I feel this when I walk the streets, because only here I am not sneered at for the color of my skin. Often I dream of the day that I will be judged fairly. I have began to follow two movements that I feel will help with the injustices I am faced with. They are The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and Women’s role in Society. The NAACP is calling out many of the injustices to African Americans such as unequal pay, housing conditions and treatment in public places. I realize there are some whites that do not condone the treatment I am receiving as an African American in comparison to my white counterparts. Being an African American woman, I pay close attention to the roles women are playing in society. I feel that women, in spite of their race share a common interest. We want to be counted as equal citizens of the...