Tag Archives: Black

Did You or Do You Roller Skate?

28 Nov

roller skates

I am pleased to announce that my roller skating site, Real Skate Stories, is up and running.

This is not the most exciting roller skating site you will find online. However, it is one of the most interesting – well to me. While all of the other sites provide information and share memories, I am collecting people’s roller skating stories and memories. Allow me to elaborate.

After returning to roller skating in 2008, I started researching roller skating in Chicago and Black roller skating in Chicago and found very little information. Even the The National Museum of Roller Skating in Lincoln, Nebraska didn’t have much on either topic.  I smelled opportunity.

Long story short, to make this opportunity work, I’m going to need the stories, images and anything else people are willing to share. Although my focus is on Chicago and Black roller skating in Chicago right now, stories are welcomed from people all over the world. There is one caveat: I am only interested in the stories of people who used quad skates, not inline or ice skates. If you don’t know what quads are, check out the image above. Ok, those are old, but you get the picture.

And it doesn’t matter how well of a skater you were/are  (or not). If you skated, your story will help me. Wow, I can’t wait to learn of other people’s roller skating memories.  Visit Real Skate Stories to share your story now or share the link with others.

Black People in Chicago Were Not Always Allowed to Roller Skate Indoors

2 Sep

Roller skating at the Savoy Ballroom - Jazz Age Chicago

In fact, Black people were first allowed to roller skate indoors at the Savoy Ballroom in Chicago’s Bronzeville community on December 8, 1938 thanks to Jimmie Davis, the manager of The Savoy at that time.

I don’t have the newspaper articles back this up because the microfilm machines were down at the Vivian Harsh Research Collection center at Carter G. Woodson Library. I will share as soon as I am able to get copies.

 

Image: Jazz Age Chicago

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