Digital Archive brought to you
by JPMorgan Chase & Co.
The National Urban League (NUL) began in 1910 in New York City to
address the discrimination that African Americans faced in the urban
industrialized North. The Chicago Urban League (CUL) was founded in
1917 and was one of the NUL's most important affiliates. When Dr. King
and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (SCLC) turned to
Chicago, they relied on the cooperation and support of the Chicago
Urban League. CUL, in partnership with the National Association for
the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and SCLC, worked to secure
and improve voting rights, access to education, housing, employment
and fair labor conditions for millions living in Chicago. King
attended CUL events, was in correspondence with CUL leadership and
spoke at CUL gatherings.
In this article, the council, activities, and contributions of the Urban League are discussed. Edwin C. Berry, the league's executive secretary, believes that contributions have decreased due to the league's refusal to take a stand against civil rights demonstrations. Mr. Berry is hopeful that contributors will return their support to make Chicago a "hallmark of democracy."