In Between The Trees | Rose Hammond

The Story of Idlewild and Woodland Park, Michigan

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During the period of Jim Crowish, African Americans were not provided the same vacation amenities as their white counterparts unless hired as janitors, waiters or house cleaners. A group of white real estate businessmen purchased 2700 acres of land in Idlewild, Michigan joined forces with Chicago businessmen, formed the Idlewild Resort Company and marketed to African Americans. Ten years later, 18 miles west of Idlewild, 2600 acres of land was purchased in a town now called Woodland Park. The two communities hosted a whose who of African American professionals and entertainers, and became known as the first Resort owned and operated by African Americans. This is Part I of the project where the trailer and three creative designs on canvas help to begin the dialogue of the Idlewild & Woodland Park docustory as told by the very people who helped to create the two towns, the resorters and residents. This is their story entitled “In Between the Trees”.