Trent House Association
Quote in response to a question about why some African Americans are moving from the north to the south:“I think for some people, life is excellent [here], but for other African Americans, they’re still struggling…Where there was supposed to be opportunities up north, but they were fake opportunities. You got true opportunities down south [now].”
The Trent House began the “Great Migration Oral History Project,” documenting the life stories of African American residents of Trenton who themselves or whose families moved to the city during the Great Migration (1915-1970). It was during this period that six million African Americans relocated from the South to urban centers in the Northeast, Midwest, and the West seeking better economic opportunities and escape from Jim Crow laws.
During the project, the Trent House team held two focus group discussions with Trenton-area stakeholders. Focus group participants were asked to reflect on the kinds of information that would be valuable to collect and how the Trent House could present itself as an appropriate sponsoring organization for the project. The Trent House team used information gleaned from these discussions to begin the process of identifying potential interview subjects and developing questions to ask. The “Great Migration Oral History Project” continues, involving students from the College of New Jersey in conducting and transcribing interviews and developing an on-line archive to house interview recordings and transcriptions and supplementary photographs and documents.