French Negro—Chicago's First Settler

Eugene FELDMAN

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Item#: 117441 price:$250.00

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"TODAY THE FLAGS OF FOREIGN SHIPS ARE IN THE CHICAGO HARBOR, AND IT WAS ALL STARTED BY A FRENCH SPEAKING NEGRO, DUSABLE": FIRST EDITION OF EUGENE FELDMAN'S PAMPHLET BIOGRAPHY OF CHICAGO'S FIRST SETTLER, JEAN BAPTISTE POINTE DUSABLE

FELDMAN, Eugene. A French Negro—Chicago's First Settler. Chicago: Marshall Pay-As-You-Drive Plan Auto Liability Insurance, circa 1960. Square octavo, original pictorial cream self-wrappers; pp. 4. $250.

First edition of this promotional pamphlet about Chicago's first settler, Haitian emigre Jean DuSable.

History teacher Eugene Feldman's A French Negro is a commerce-minded biography of Chicago icon Jean Baptiste Pointe DuSable, the city's first settler and citizen. While DuSable's accomplishments were not superhuman—he was a trader—DuSable nevertheless caught the imagination of generations of African Americans in Chicago, many of whom made similarly difficult journeys during the Great Migration to become Chicagoans. "As black Chicagoans raised cultural institutions for the modern city, du Sable, the frontier trader, traveled with them as the city's unofficial founding brother; and whenever the broader white community left him out of the story, black Chicagoans were there to point out the gap… 200 years after du Sable, a half-French, half-black Saint-Dominguan, established himself as paterfamilias of a half-Potawatomi family, his memory was claimed and kept alive by the African-American community of a 'Great American City' on whose lands he had built his home without ever knowing that one day they would migrate there or why" (The Root). This pamphlet was released to community groups as part of the public service program at a Chicago auto insurance dealer.

Faint vertical crease to pamphlet, a few minor spots to covers, and light rubbing and toning to extremities. An extremely good copy. Scarce.

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