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2    WHEREAS, The 7th Senate District is one of the most
3ethnically diverse districts in the State of Illinois; and
4    WHEREAS, The district has long been and increasingly is
5home to Black people from every corner of the vast and
6beautiful Black diaspora; and
7    WHEREAS, The Black and African American communities of the
8district have a rich history of achievements, culture,
9activism, and countless other contributions to the vibrancy
10and uniqueness of the district; and
11    WHEREAS, Graceland Cemetery, located in the district in
12Lakeview, is the permanent resting place for 29 leaders of the
13Underground Railroad network that helped many thousands of
14enslaved African American people find freedom; and
15    WHEREAS, Uptown was one of the first places African
16Americans could live on the north side outside the Black Belt,
17despite experiencing intense racism and discrimination once
18they moved there; and
19    WHEREAS, Black elders currently residing in the 7th
20District as longtime residents were some of the first Black



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1people decades ago to move into communities such as Buena
2Park, Rogers Park, Lincoln Square, Andersonville, Budlong
3Woods, Uptown, Edgewater, Lakeview, West Ridge, and other
4areas of the district; and
5    WHEREAS, Black elders have left a rich legacy in the
6district by creating safe spaces and being role models for
7youth of all races and ethnicities; and
8    WHEREAS, The Black Panther Party established a legacy of
9mutual aid and humanity across racial lines, which continues
10to shape the community-led mutual aid efforts in Uptown, on
11Argyle Street, in Rogers Park, along the Winthrop and Kenmore
12corridors, and in other 7th District areas; and
13    WHEREAS, The 7th District is home to the historic Winthrop
14Family Garden, which honors the legacy of African American
15families who made the historic move during the Great Migration
16and began building a Black residential community along the
174600 North block of Winthrop Avenue as early as the year 1910;
19    WHEREAS, Winthrop Avenue was the only block on which Black
20families could live because of segregation, with scores of
21racial covenants hindering them from moving onto other blocks
22in Uptown; with only 18 families living on 4600 North Winthrop



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1Avenue, they formed a community that supported each other and
2became one family despite the restrictive covenants intended
3to keep Uptown segregated; the Winthrop Family Garden stands
4as a place of remembrance and celebrates what it took to make
5Uptown what it is today; and
6    WHEREAS, Many Black residents, including whole villages
7and communities, have been displaced from the far north side
8over the decades, including from parts of neighborhoods within
9the 7th District; and
10    WHEREAS, Those same Black residents left their mark on
11nearly every neighborhood in the north lake front district;
13    WHEREAS, The future of the 7th District is as bright as the
14past, as Black people continue to run small businesses of
15every type, continue to graduate from schools, and assume
16leadership roles in their communities, in the region, and in
17our state in every imaginable way; and
18    WHEREAS, Uptown features small businesses from West and
19Central Africa, such as Osas African Kitchen, the Nigerian
20Kitchen Restaurant, the Mukase African Restaurant, the Makola
21African Supermarket, Amen African Braiding, the Iyanze Bar &
22Cafe, The Good Shepherd Enterprise, B&Q Afro Root Cuisine, the



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1Queen African Hair Braiding Salon, and Chem's African Hair
2Braiding, among others; and
3    WHEREAS, Edgewater, Uptown, and Rogers Park are home to an
4extensive Eritrean and Ethiopian population spread along
5Broadway and Clark Street with family-run businesses such as
6the Axum Ethiopian Restaurant, the Ethiopian Diamond, the
7Awash Ethiopian Restaurant, Tesfa Ethiopian Cuisine, the Selam
8Ethiopian Kitchen, Queen Sheba, the Ethio Mart, the Mella
9Cafe, the Demera Restaurant, the Kukulu Market, the Ethio
10Mart, the Denden Restaurant, and Meron Injera; and
11    WHEREAS, Howard Avenue in Rogers Park is home to many
12Black-owned Caribbean small businesses, such as the Kizin
13Creole Restaurant, Caribbean Cuts, the Good To Go Restaurant,
14the Caribbean American Baking Co., and Ashley Beauty Supply;
16    WHEREAS, The 7th District is home to many Black Americans
17and African Americans and is comprised of a glorious multitude
18of ethnic groups from all over Africa, including those from
19Ghana, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somalia, Senegal, Mali,
20Togo, Congo, Cameroon, Sudan, the Caribbean, and South
21America, many of whom found refuge along Broadway and Sheridan
22in Uptown and along Howard Avenue in Rogers Park and built a
23community; and



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1    WHEREAS, The Bryn Mawr Historic District in Edgewater is
2home to a growing number of new African American and Black and
3LGBTQ+-owned small businesses that bring vibrancy to this
4historic corridor; and
5    WHEREAS, Ebony DeBerry, a Black woman and lifelong
6resident of Rogers Park, wanted to build a community of people
7who lifted each other and gave back to the community she had
8growing up; she helped develop ONE Northside, which is a mixed
9income, multi-ethnic, intergenerational community-based
10organization that brings together the diverse communities of
11Chicago's far north side and uses collective power to address
12injustice and advance the community's interests; she has
13created safe spaces for women of color to come together, share
14resources, and encourage each other; and
15    WHEREAS, Jackie Taylor, a Black woman and longtime
16resident of Uptown, founded the Black Ensemble Theater in
171976, which is the first cultural center in the nation
18dedicated to eradicating racism through the arts; the Black
19Ensemble Theater is a crown jewel of the 7th District,
20bringing together not only Black residents but people from all
21racial and ethnic backgrounds to celebrate through free
22outdoor concerts for the community on the 4400 block of North
23Clark Street, unique plays, and other programming that



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1celebrates the arts in the district; and
2    WHEREAS, Dr. Ana Vicky Castillo, an advocate for the
3education of the Latin and African diaspora, created the Afro
4Latino Historical Society and the African Diaspora Museum; she
5has worked tirelessly to reclaim the legacy of the forgotten
6history of the African American and Latin community; she has
7helped inform the public of the great achievements of the
8Afro-Latino and African immigrant communities; therefore, be
11ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF ILLINOIS, that we recognize the Black
12and African American communities of the 7th Senate District
13and express our deep appreciation and respect for the myriad
14of Black communities that currently reside in and have lived
15in the 7th District; and be it further
16    RESOLVED, That we celebrate the history, achievements,
17culture, activism, and countless other contributions that
18Black people from a vast and beautiful diaspora have made to
19the 7th Senate District of Illinois on the far north side of