Publications

Academic, Historical and Other Professional Writing

Living the California Dream: African American Leisure Sites during the Jim Crow Era   University of Nebraska Press, January 2020. The book cover art is by artist Derrick Adams from his 2016 “Culture Club” series.

 

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  • Leisure’s Race, Power and Place: The Recreation and Remembrance of African Americans in the California Dream
    Doctor of Philosophy in History Dissertation (2015), University of California, Santa Barbara.
  • Remembering Santa Monica’s Black Beach
    When surf and sand was practically segregated, the Inkwell was both a slur and a badge of pride for African Americans
    The Argonaut News, in This Week section, Wednesday, May 27, 2015.
  • Encyclopedia Entries for BlackPast.org
    “The Inkwell, Santa Monica, California (1905–1964),” “Nick Gabaldon (1924–1951)” with Rick Blocker, and “The Inkwell, Martha’s Vineyard (1890s–).” BlackPast.org is a web portal reference center providing information to the general public on the history of African Americans and their worldwide ancestry.
  • African American Leisure Space in Santa Monica: The Beach Sometimes Known as the “Inkwell,” 1900s–1960s
    Southern California Quarterly, Vol. 91, No. 2 (2009): 155–189. A section of the Ocean Park beach in Santa Monica, California, served as an African American leisure space during the era of segregation. This article identifies the discrimination that African Americans endured, but also celebrates both the local black community formation and the sociable relaxation that Los Angeles African Americans enjoyed at this site.
  • Lake Elsinore: A Southern California African American Resort Area During the Jim Crow Era, 1920s–1960s, and the Challenges of Historic Preservation
    Master of Historic Preservation Thesis (2007), University of Southern California.
    As soon as African Americans could afford leisure experiences after the end of American slavery, they joined Euro-Americans at resorts and in travel to other places domestically and overseas. Being able to take a vacation or an overnight trip for pleasure became a critical marker and entitlement of middle class status. This thesis examines the Lake Elsinore resort in Riverside County, California, and the involvement of African American actors in the area’s history and development during the period of legal segregation in the 20th century — an issue overlooked in the past. The cultural landscape of this African American resort community presents challenges and opportunities under current preservation policy for commemoration, because significant built artifacts are not extant in this heritage area. When physical traces are lost, how do we memorialize in the collective history a more expansive view of the citizenry, when historic preservation efforts in the United States emphasize tangible aspects of culture?
  • Intersections of South Central Los Angeles: People and Places in Historic and Contemporary Photographs
    with Christopher D. Jimenez y West, Matthew W. Roth, and Morgan P. Yates.
    Los Angeles: Automobile Club of Southern California, 2006. Available for purchase through the California African American Museum at Exposition Park, Los Angeles.
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