I love this photo for many different reasons, but the primary reason is the innocence of the children that are in this photo. There were a series of photos taken around this time by two photographers, and in April of 1941 Russell Lee and Edwin Rosskam arrived in Chicago. Their mission was to record how people lived and worked throughout the United States. The southside of Chicago had been termed by the government as the “Black Belt” and the United States government sent these two men there to record the “Black Belt”. The government looked at the photos and saw poverty and at the time this was an example of pure discrimination on their part. I am not that old but when I was younger ropes, bikes, different balls for sports, and your friends and family were all you had for enjoyment. The little girls in this photo are happy to just be jumping rope outside with each other. The worlds troubles, ignorance, and discrimination were not a concern for them. The world was in the palm of their hands, but the fight was greater than one could ever imagine now. We now have several examples of successful people from the southside of Chicago and Chicago overall. One or more of the children in this photo may have turned out to be successful as well, but in that moment, all they had were each other and their jump rope. Maintain that child like innocence, live in the moment, and never be discouraged by your circumstances.
Written By Ronald Anthony Wilson.