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Exhibit Dates: May 23 - August 26, 2007
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UP FROM FLAMES

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The Path To Ruin > Demographic Changes

SECTION GUIDE

The Path to Ruin | Demographic Changes | Private Disinvestment: The Real Estate Follies |
Public Disinvestment: Planned Shrinkage
| "The Fire War" | The Many Causes of Arson | Hitting Bottom
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bushwick

Demographic Change in Bushwick in the 1950-60's
by John A. Dereszewski

Bushwick experienced huge changes in the 50's and 60's, undergoing what the Dept. of City planning later called a "demographic inversion." Black immigration began during the mid to late 1950's, centered in the mostly one and two family housing communities situated near Bedford-Stuyvesant and in southern Bushwick. This largely represented a continuum of the migration that occurred in other north Brooklyn communities after the end of the war, as the long term white residents departed to the suburbs and created housing opportunities for new residents.

While poorer than the previous residents, Black Bushwickites were working class and strongly oriented to home ownership and forming block associations. These blocks were in a better position to withstand the devastations of the 1970's.

Other Black Bushwickites were far poorer and heavily welfare dependent. They generally occupied the multiple dwelling buildings in the Broadway-Bushwick Avenue vicinity and in private houses that were converted into rooming houses.

The Hispanic migration came later, picking up momentum in the 1960's as a mostly poor and heavily welfare dependent population entered Bushwick, both from Williamsburg and directly from Puerto Rico. They moved into Northern Bushwick, which the Italian population was in the process of leaving, and into the rapidly deteriorating central core.

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