Across the Tracks


Remembering Greenwood, Black Wall Street, and the Tulsa Race Massacre

by Alverne Ball
illustrated by Stacey Robinson

In Across the Tracks: Remembering Greenwood, Black Wall Street, and the Tulsa Race Massacre, author Alverne Ball and illustrator Stacey Robinson have crafted a love letter to Greenwood, Oklahoma. Also known as Black Wall Street, Greenwood was a community whose importance is often overshadowed by the atrocious massacre that took place there in 1921.

Across the Tracks introduces the reader to the businesses and townsfolk who flourished in this unprecedented time of prosperity for Black Americans. We learn about Greenwood and why it is essential to remember the great achievements of the community as well as the tragedy which nearly erased it. However, Ball is careful to recount the eventual recovery of Greenwood. With additional supplementary materials including a detailed preface, timeline, and historical essay, Across the Tracks offers a thorough examination of the rise, fall, and rebirth of Black Wall Street.

Hardcover | 64 pages | Harry N. Abrams | 2021

Alverne Ball has an MFA in fiction writing from Columbia College Chicago. He is the recipient of the 2014 and 2015 Glyph Rising Star Award for his writing on One Nation: Old Druids. In 2009, he received the first-ever Luminarts graphic novel writing award. Ball lives in Joliet, Illinois.

Stacey Robinson is an assistant professor of graphic design at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. As part of the collaborative team Black Kirby with artist John Jennings, Robinson creates graphic novels, gallery exhibitions, lectures, and workshops that use strategies to imagine new worlds inspired by design, hip-hop, the arts and sciences, and diasporic African belief systems.

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