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Your Guide to Bronzeville: Home of Chicago’s Harlem Renaissance

Harold Washington cultural center

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From the early part of the 20th century through the 1950s Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood, located on the south side of the city, hosted the heart of Chicago’s African-American community. You can still see hints of the once-thriving heart of this renaissance micro-city when you book a ride with Signature Transportation Group and tour the sights.

Chicago’s Harlem: A History

Beginning with the “Great Northern Migration” that saw hundreds of thousands of African-Americans leaving the rural south in search of jobs and prosperity up north until the middle of the 20th Century, Chicago’s South-side experienced a sort of renaissance with Bronzeville at its heart. The “City Within a City” became the center of black culture in Chicago, hosting night clubs and dance halls that played the latest in blues and jazz music, attracting a diverse audience entranced by those uniquely American sounds. New theaters and black-owned businesses opened, artists and intellectuals met to talk about the politics of the day, activists spoke out against segregation and the divisive practices of the time— Bronzeville was a bustling metropolis that attracted the best of Chicago as a place where people came to see and be seen in all their glamour and glory.

The neighborhood saw a decline in the 1970s as racially restricted housing was put to an end and families sought other neighborhoods to raise their families. Today, activists and businesses are working together to restore this historic neighborhood and return a bit of sparkle to a colorful piece of Chicago’s past.

Neighborhood Highlights Today

Visitors to Bronzeville still have plenty to see, from the oldest green spaces in Chicago to public beaches with breathtaking views. Bronzeville has much to offer in its 7-mile stretch:

  • 31st Street Beach: A public beach that features sandy shores, easy access to Lake Michigan, and stunning views of the Chicago skyline.
  • Harold Washington Cultural Center: The performing arts center opened in 2004 and offers a 1,000-seat theater and video editing lab, playing host to a number of local theater and dance troupes.
  • Gallery Guichard: Specializing in art from the African diaspora, the public gallery hosts a new exhibition every four to six weeks with pieces as varied as paintings, sculpture, and furniture.
  • Ellis Park: The oldest green space in the city now offers access to an Arts and Recreation Center that offers a gymnasium, fitness center, art spaces, and more.
  • Bronzeville Children’s Museum: The only permanent African-American museum in the United States gives kids the chance to learn about black inventors, artists, and people from the Bronzeville community.

Who Are We?

When you travel in a new city, you need a guide to help you get to your destination safely and on time. At Signature Transportation Group, we’re dedicated to assisting you with that and so much more. Use our online tools to browse our fleet and choose the right late model luxury vehicle to serve your group, then contact us to add the amenities you need and learn about discounts available to help save you money. From start to finish, we’re committed to a new type of transportation experience – one that will be the best part of your trip.

Explore Bronzeville in Chicago with Signature Transportation Group

Bronzeville is just one of the unique places you can see when you travel with a guide. Contact Signature Transportation Group at (844) 266-5784 or visit our offices at 2300 Hamilton Road in Arlington Heights to learn more and book your reservations today.