The Short Omaha Ghetto Story
The Omaha ghetto is in a city that is very underrated and often overlooked, while being the largest city in the state of Nebraska. With Omaha being the birthplace of Malcolm X, the Omaha black history, as well as the local Hispanic community has a similar story to other Midwestern cities.
During the early 1900s, many blacks and other ethnic groups came to the city of Omaha. Most of the Omaha black population had servant type of jobs or worked on the railroads.
In the beginning, the Omaha black population was equal to only a few thousand, with a small community in North Omaha close to what is now Downtown, as a number of people from the rural south moved to the Nebraska city.
The black community began in a small section of the North Side, with the Omaha black population, which today is 14% of 430,000 plus residents, expanding to N. 24th Street and N. 16th Street in the early part of the city’s development years. 24th Street would later become the heart of Omaha’s black culture and business and entertainment district.
North Omaha’s black community started to change around the 1960s, as the Omaha black population moved into other areas of the Omaha ghetto on the North Side, outside of the 16th and 24th streets areas.
The South Omaha ghetto is mainly the Latino community with exception to the housing projects around 29th and T Street, which is mostly made up of black families. The Mexican community of Omaha began during the early and mid-1900s, with many living in area of South Omaha that were close to the local employment opportunities.
In the 90s, the streets of the Omaha ghetto in areas like Little Vietnam (Fontenelle Projects), Killer Park (Miller Park), the Low Ends, and number of blocks on the North Side, helped the city become known as “Omaha NeBlastya.
Today the streets are once again changing as people are moving further away with the help of section 8 apartments in far northwestern Omaha and gentrification in areas from around 16th street to 30th street.
*Note: All information is provided through people of the community, outside sources, and research. Some information might not be current and/or 100% accurate.