In 1966 Dr. Martin Luther King brought his civil rights movement to Chicago. While his aides wanted him to live in more comfortable surroundings, King moved into a flat on Homan Street and then at 16th and Hamlin, just two blocks from the CVL pool room.

There was a split in the civil rights movement. Many of its leaders did not want to work with the hard core, grass roots people like those of Lawndale. At a speech by Dr. King at Soldiers Field, one of King's aides said they didn't need all those "gangbangers." The CVL talked to the Rangers and Disciples and thousands of people walked out on Kings speech.

King immediately set up a meeting with Pepilow and Bobby Gore and other gang leaders. He told them he needed the gangs and the grass roots in the upcoming battle with Mayor Daley.

As Dr. King began his unsuccessful struggle for open housing and concessions from the Mayor, conditions in Chicago worsened. Even as Kings was being stoned by white ethnics, African Americans and Puerto Ricans began to rebel with violence.

1. Dr. King in Gage Park
2.Dr. King's Lawndale home

 

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Martin Luther King meets racism in Chicago.
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