Historical Context of the Organization 

The National Council of Negro Women was started by Mary McLeod Bethune in 1935 and during this time most of the Black communities in America were not prosperous. Blacks were facing discrimination in all points of their lives, thus they created organizations to help them deal with the issues that were facing their communities. These organizations helped to create unity and safety among communities, where they could not find help and/or assistance elsewhere.

Most of the organizations in the Black community were headed by Black men, who although were a victim of the White patriarchal system, reinforces oppression through their relationships with Black women. Therefore, Black women were seen as second class citizens and did not have a voice, therefore, organizations such as NCNW helped to organize women and give them a voice. An interesting point is that this organization is non-secular, unlike other times in history, where the only vehicle for women empowerment was through church organizations and activities. Despite this as can be seen in the connections page, many of these women were active participates in the church community in Champaign-Urbana.

Black Women’s work and life
The Public i-see “The Labor of Black Women” on page 3
Rape and the Inner Lives of Black Women in the Middle West

Interview of Darlene Clark Hine, who is a Professor of African American Studies and History and Director of the Center for African American History at Northwestern University on 
From Respectability To Respect: Black Women’s Civic Culture And Consciousness In Jim Crow America (11/8/2006)
Interview with Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, the 300th Anniversary University Professor at Harvard University and a Prize-Winning Writer on 
Well-Behaved Women Seldom Make History (11/29/2007)

Interview with Janet Duitsman Cornelius, retired from the history faculty at Danville Area Community College and Adjunct Professor at Eastrn Illinois University and Martha LaFrenz Kay, retired from the literature and humanities faculty at Danville Area Community College on 
Women of Conscience: Social Reform in Danville, Illinois 1890-1930 (01/14/2009)

Interview with Lisa G. Materson, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of History at the University of California, Davis on 
For the Freedom of Her Race: Black Women and Electoral Politics in Illinois, 1877-1932(06/10/2009)