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U Street Oral History Project - D.C.'s Cultural Corridor

 Digital Collection
Identifier: dcpl_ohp026


  • Creation: 2014



The U Street Oral History Project gathers first-hand accounts of the historic U Street Corridor neighborhood from its heyday as “Black Broadway” in the 1920s and 1930s through the riots that devastated the area following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., to the present renewal.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions to accessing this digital collection.

Conditions Governing Use

The D.C. Public Library holds copyright for all of the U Street Oral History Project interviews.

Biographical / Historical

The project began in spring 2014 with oral historian Kelly Navies conducting interviews with long-time D.C. residents who were active in the music scenes for which U Street was best known. The interviews include first-hand accounts of the entertainment scene, including discussions of artists, venues, and radio stations, as well as racial segregation, the civil rights movement, the 1968 riots, and the changing identity of the U Street neighborhood. To date, fourteen interviews have taken place. The audio recordings are made available here, along an index for each and transcripts for two of the interviews

Language of Materials


Repository Details

Part of the The People's Archive, Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library Repository

901 G Street NW
4th Floor East
Washington DC 20001