Black women remained by and large confined to domestic work, while men for the first time in significant numbers made entryways into the northern manufacturing, packinghouse, and automobile industries.
Anxious white southerners claimed that northern labor agents lulled unsuspecting black southerners to the North and into a life of urban misery.
By the time of the war, most black people had been disfranchised, effectively stripped of their right to vote through both legal and extralegal means.
Jim Crow segregation, legitimized by the (1896) Supreme Court ruling, forced black people to use separate and usually inferior facilities.
Even more influential were the testimonials and letters of the migrants themselves.
Migrants relied on informal networks of family and friends to facilitate their move to the North.
This sense of community eased a black migrant's transition to city life.
Southern migrants did not always find the "promised land" they envisioned.
Between 19, roughly 500,000 black southerners packed their bags and headed to the North, fundamentally transforming the social, cultural, and political landscape of cities such as Chicago, New York, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, and Detroit.
The Great Migration would reshape black America and the nation as a whole.