Archive ID: 2020-030-2

Trumbull Park novel

Date Created: circa 1959

Created By: Frank London Brown

Donor: Chris (Christine) J. Walley

Media Type: Object

Language: English


In 1959, Frank London Brown (1927-62) published the novel, Trumbull Park. The book was a fictionalized account of Brown’s own experiences as a black person living in the Trumbull Park Homes in the South Deering neighborhood during the race riots of the early 1950s. This moving account gives a harrowing portrayal of the physical and mental toll of the assaults faced by black residents and how such experiences contributed to the growing civil rights movement. Brown implies that the ongoing intensity of the riots were stoked by corrupt real estate interests. At the time of its publication, the book was praised by literary giants like Langston Hughes and Gwendolyn Brooks; however, it was neglected during the ensuing decades. In addition to being a writer, Brown had also been a machinist and union organizer as well as a jazz singer. He attended Roosevelt University in Chicago. Brown died from leukemia at the early age of 35 while a Ph.D. candidate at University of Chicago.

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Historic Events   Trumbull Park Riots   1950-1979   South Deering   African-American   Object   2020-030   Activism   African American   Books   Housing   Public housing   South Deering   Trumbull Park