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6. Great Migration Terminology

One of the interesting things about the Great Migration is the terminology itself. Ken said that there had been a surge of interest in the Great Migration. When I first started working on this actually, which was back in the mid-seventies, if I told someone I was working on the Great Migration does anyone know what they would have thought I was working on?

[Female voice] It's my field, Puritan Immigration, from the 1630s to the 1640s.

Right, the Great Migration happened in the 1630s. And it was the Puritans coming to Massachusetts, and it was the common term and hey, if you said Great Migration that's what people said, thought I was saying, and it's very interesting, now if you say Great Migration I think more people, more historians, more people who are familiar also with the seventeenth century will know what it is.

And I'm not quite sure when it came to be called the Great Migration. If you look at the sources from the period, what you see is "the exodus." That's the most common term that was used at the time. So it was first referred to by African Americans that way and then later came to be called the Great Migration.

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