Bens Chilli Bowl

U street’s population was largely dominated by african americans in the mid-20th century to the late 1990s. Many people believe that the population was decreased due to the spontateous decision of education, middle class white people to move into the neighborhood. The article this picture is in argues that was not the reason and that in fact it the migration of african americans was nothing close to spontaneous. Politicians like President Obama, and the mayor of DC seen in this picture started to worry about the crime rates and danger that was present in the neighborhood. In an effort to reduce this danger, authorities started to crack down on the vacant buildings that were illegally run by drug dealers and essentially started to impose higher taxes on these vacant properties. As the taxes increased, more money went into the hands of politicians to build new apartment buildings and open them to the public at an affordable price. But, even after all the gentrification and the moving, we still see a majority of african americans at the one and only: Ben’s Chilli Bowl. Of course we see the mix of Asian and White americans, but it says alot about the lasting affect of culture when the african american president of our country chooses to have lunch in one of the neighborhoods cultural landmarks.





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