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voters voting for 1876 and 1896 with preceding and succeeding

election years.

The second consideration must be studied in the light of the data presented in Table VII. A study of the Republican pluralities (+) for the ten most populous states for the year 1876 shows that in seven states out of ten the plurality for 1876 was less than for 1872 or 1880 and the Democratic plurality of Indiana was less than the Republican plurality for Indiana in 1872 or 1880. For 1896, as compared with preceding or succeeding election years no such relation holds. Republican pluralities decrease and increase, and Democratic pluralities become Republican pluralities. But it is this very change in the size and allegiance of pluralities that is indicative of a shifting margin of intelligent voters. The increasing variability is in large measure due to this shift, because a study of the size of the pluralities of 1896 shows greater divergence between them than between the pluralities of 1892 or 1900, and a much greater divergence than between the pluralities of 1872, 1876, 1880, or 1888.

From the analysis of these considerations it can be concluded that the increasing variability of popular vote at presidential elections is real evidence of an increasing independence in voting. Intelligent political action seems to be on the increase in approximately the ratio shown by the increasing variabilities of the popular vote at presidential elections. The other aspect of this change is the evidence it presents that the rigidity of our political traditions is decreasing. The increasing variability of the popular vote in so far as it is evidence of increasing independence of political action shows a growing impatience with the restraints of political tradition. The marginal shift is excellent proof of this. The negative aspect of the increasing elasticity of our political traditions is shown by the increasing number of political parties since 1856.

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Map of Chicago showing districts in which large numbers of colored people live; the four colored districts are numbered and indicated by single lines, the neighboring districts of segregated vice on the lower south and west sides are not numbered and are indicated by heavy double cross lines.

CHICAGO HOUSING CONDITIONS, VI: THE

PROBLEM OF THE NEGRO

ALZADA P. COMSTOCK
The Chicago School of Civics and Philanthropy

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Although the colored population of Chicago is a little less than 2 per cent of the entire population, the problems connected with it are far reaching. The Negro's economic and social limitations have brought peculiarities of living conditions in the colored sections of the city which are the concern of the white sections as well as of the colored. For this reason it was believed that an intensive study of the housing conditions in the two largest colored districts would throw light, not only upon the general conditions under which the Negro lives, but upon the larger housing problem of Chicago.

There are in Chicago four relatively well-defined districts in which a large proportion of colored people have resided for a number of years. The largest of these is the section on the South Side known as the "black belt." This section lies mainly in the Second, Third, and Thirtieth wards, the three wards which have the highest percentages of colored inhabitants. This section has gradually extended southward from the business district, with State Street as its main thoroughfare. It now lies on both sides of State Street, from Sixteenth Street almost as far south as Fifty-fifth Street, with a center at the corner of State and Thirty-first streets, near which many of the colored professional and business men have their

* This article is one of a series dealing with housing conditions in Chicago which has been published in this journal by the directors and students of the Department of Social Investigation of the Chicago School of Civics and Philanthropy. Other articles in the series will be found in issues of September and November, 1910, January, July, and September, 1911.

As in the case of the articles previously published, the material was obtained by the students of the department in a house-to-house canvass of the selected districts. The work of tabulation was done by Grace P. Norton, assistant in the department.

* According to the School Census of 1910, the colored population comprises 92 per cent of the total minor population of the Second Ward, and 80 per cent of the total minor population of the Third Ward. The Thirtieth Ward is third with 53 per cent.

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offices. The older and poorer dwellings are as a rule found grouped in the section west of State Street, following the two lines of railroad tracks. Many of the colored people who desire a better neighborhood have moved east of State Street; Wabash Avenue is for two or three miles largely occupied by Negroes; and Indiana, Prairie, and Forest avenues, and a few streets even nearer the lake, also have colored colonies, mostly of recent growth. The members of the colored groups have shown a tendency to follow main lines of traffic and to keep close to the railroads, due probably to the character of their occupations; for the Negro's work is seldom connected with an industry peculiar to a certain community, as is so often the case with the immigrant, but is most often on the railroads or in the downtown business section.

The second largest district, that on the West Side, has followed the main lines of traffic running west from the business section. It lies in the Fourteenth Ward, which has 32 per cent of its population colored. The district may be said to be bounded by Lake Street, Ashland, Austin, and Western avenues. Parts of this tract are occupied by factories employing other nationalities; consequently the neighborhood has not the conspicuous characteristics of the South Side "black belt”; the small shops are not so generally in the hands of the Negroes; and even the groups on the street corners show the cosmopolitan character of the neighborhood.

The two smaller districts are both in the southern part of the city, although distinctly separate from the largest district, which is usually called the South Side district. In Englewood, southwest of the largest section is a small residence district from Sixty-first Street to Sixty-fifth Street, between Center and Ashland avenues. It is not yet thickly settled, and has almost no business establishments. The fourth and smallest district is in Hyde Park, close to the Illinois Central tracks, and not far from the lake shore. This district extends from Fifty-third Street to Fifty-seventh Street along Lake Avenue, which at this point is lined with small shops and cheap amusement places.

In order to obtain detailed information with regard to housing conditions in a small area in the two largest districts, a house-tohouse canvass was made in four blocks in the South Side "black

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