Black History Month: Remembering The Green Book

Written by: Kim Frierson, Training Specialist, National Safe Place Network

How do we provide support to youth and families and also promote self-sufficiency?  What are the ways that service providers give support?  How do we drive young people to move from ‘surviving to thriving?’ Providing opportunities for success for young people is essential to building their resilience and confidence.  As young people navigate new experiences, service providers look to provide resources that will support their exploration.

In recognition of Black History Month, we recognize Victor Hugo Green’s The Negro Travelers’ Green Book (later The Negro Motorist Green Book), a pivotal resource for African Americans during the Jim Crow era.  Mr. Green ­— a postal worker and civic leader — was well aware of the discrimination that many blacks faced outside of their own communities and created a guide for New Yorkers to traverse a new society.  From the end of slavery into the 20th century, African Americans began to partake in new experiences, such as owning cars and traveling for work and pleasure. It became essential to which know hotels, restaurants, and other amenities were black-friendly.  The Negro Travelers’ Green Book provided much needed support for those embarking on new journeys, serving as a guide to avoid the pitfalls of prejudice, embarrassment, and potentially violence.  Much like resource and tip sheets today, The Green Book offered African Americans an aid to steer new experiences.  The Green Book was published until 1964 with the passage of the Civil Rights Act, and had grown to include international resources.

As the youth and families that we work with embark on new journeys, we hope to support them and give them the tools to make informed decisions, be successful, and THRIVE.


The Green Book: The forgotten story of one carrier’s legacy helping others navigate Jim Crow’s highways

The Green Book: The Black Travelers’ Guide to Jim Crow America -

Harlem’s Victor Hugo Green’s The Green Book -

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