Wednesday, April 2
UP SOUTH CHICAGO ORAL HISTORY PROJECT
SFA oral historian Amy Evans just returned from a week-long fieldwork-gathering trip to the Windy City, looking for stories of transplanted Southerners who left their homes but held on to family recipes. She found a whole lot more. Amy visited with James Lemons of Lem's Bar-B-Q, who left Indianola, Mississippi, as a young man, following his brothers to Chicago and into the barbecue business. Barbara Ann Bracy laughed as she remembered her Mississippi-born father opening the barbecue joint she still runs on the South Side and naming it after her. Edna Stewart recalled the moment when Civil Rights workers first visited her restaurant, Edna's, and when Reverend Jesse Jackson fell for her sweet potatoes. Izola White, originally from Tennessee, outlined her opinions on the color of dumplings and cornmeal served at Izola's Famiy Dining. Rose DeShazer White, who was born in Hollandale, Mississippi, baked a caramel cake from her grandmother's recipe and shared a slice, along with stories. Chicago native John Pawlikowski of Fat Johnnie's shared his thoughts on the mother-in-law sandwich, Chicago's long history with tamales, and their curious connection to Mississippi.
These oral histories will be online soon. In the meantime, please visit our new Flickr page to catch a glimpse of some of Amy's photographs from the road. And then plan to join us in May for Camp Chicago: An Up South Expedition. Many of the people Amy interviewed are part of the weekend's programming. Hear their stories in person, and get ready to eat.
Posted by Amy Cameron Evans at 4:06 PM