Logan Heights, San Diego
In 1871, Congressman John A. Logan wrote legislation to provide federal land grants and subsidies for a transcontinental railroad ending in San Diego. A street laid in 1881 was named Logan Heights after him, and the name came to be applied to the general area. Plans for a railroad never successfully materialized, and the area was predominantly residential by the start of the 20th century, becoming one of San Diego's oldest communities. Its transformation began in 1910 with the influx of refugees of the Mexican Revolution, who soon became the majority ethnic group. For this reason, the southern part of the original Logan Heights neighborhood came to be called Barrio Logan. Barrio Logan was and only a few blocks located south of Logan Avenue, 28st Street to the east, 20th Street to the west and Main Street to the south.
From the early 1920s until the 1990s, Logan Heights was home to the largest black community in San Diego. Blacks were restricted to the Logan Heights area to live for over 50 plus years. One can easily visit Logan Heights today and still see black churches on every corner. Some blacks started leaving the Logan Heights neighborhood after the 1960s Civil Rights Movement to enclaves such as Encanto, Emerald Hills, Skyline and Oak Park. Famous black citizens lived, worked and owned businesses on Imperial Avenue and Oceanview Blvd, such as Dr. Ford and Dr. Kimbrough. (Kimbrough has an elementary school named after him in Logan Heights / Sherman Heights area). Both of them and others were known in Logan Heights and United States as pioneers of the Civil Rights era during the 1960s. Please look for references at the San Diego History.org/Baynard Collection, home of the largest photo history essay of blacks (United States) in Logan Heights, from 1930's - 1980's. Also one can go to the front page of San Diego History.org and click on JOURNALS OF SAN DIEGO HISTORY AND click on VOLUME 57/#3 and VOLUME 27/#2 to see in depth history of blacks in San Diego beginning in the late 1800s. Also, history on blacks living in La Jolla, Coronado, and having businesses in downtown San Diego in the late 1800s and early 1900s.
From the 1930s to the 1980s Imperial Avenue was known as Harlem of the West with nightclubs, businesses owned and operated by African Americans. Oceanview Blvd also included. Homes in the Logan Heights area was built far back as the 1900s. Between the 1930s and the 1960s, many black Americans built their homes in Logan Heights, which are still standing today. Along with the many, many black churches built on nearly every block.
Today Logan Heights is predominantly Hispanic starting from the early 1990s on.
- Chicano Park
- San Diego History.org/Baynard Collection
- San Diego History.org/Journals of San Diego History, Vols 57/#3 & 27/#2
4. San Diego Historical Society.org/Baynard Collection of Black San Diegans in Logan Heights.
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