Yesterday’s Milwaukee

The Rise and Fall of Bronzeville

At its peak in the 1930s to 1950s, it had quite a history.

Sign-up for the Urban Milwaukee daily email

At its peak in the 1930s to 1950s, it had quite a history. Back to the full article.

Photos - Page 2

5 thoughts on “Yesterday’s Milwaukee: The Rise and Fall of Bronzeville”

  1. George Mitchell says:

    This is a great piece. Significant at many levels.

  2. Ardie Halyard was my great aunt. Dr. Maxwell was my cousin. State Assemblyman LeRoy J. Simmons, was my grandfather. Ronald & Constance Baldwin, the 1st. black owned florist shop in Milwaukee, are my parents. My great,great grandfather, Walter Reaves trained horses for schlitz beer

  3. Larry Widen says:

    Great piece on Bronze I’ll. I included some musical history of the area in my 2014 book, “Milwaukee Rock and Roll.” Because of the ongoing prejudice against African Americans in the years following World War II, Bronzeville nightclubs and dance halls were the only place that Duke Ellington, Muddy Waters, Little Richard, and other famous entertainers could play. Ellington often stayed with a family or at a bed and breakfast type rooming house in the neighborhood when he came to Milwaukee.

    Isaac “Ike” Coggs promoted black musical acts during this time, and brought Billie Holiday to Milwaukee to perform at the old roller skating rink on the river in what is now the Riverwest neighborhood.
    By the end of the 1950s, black musicians became too big for the mainstream venues to ignore, and Chuck Berry headlined a rock show at the Riverside theatre downtown.

  4. edward olson says:


  5. Article, Awesome! William Lawrence, ProCon Business

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *