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Return Migration to the South
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David Wharton [3666-18]

Called Back

Approximately two-thirds of the African-American migrants who moved to the South between 1965 and 1970 were returning to the region of their birth. Significant return migration continued in the 1970s: from 1975 to 1980, at least 41 percent of African-American migrants to the South were return migrants, whose destinations included large southern cities as well as a wide range of smaller urban communities and rural regions. Elder Robert Atwater (1908-2001) was born in Mississippi to a former slave. After spending much of his adult life in St. Louis, Missouri, working in construction, Atwater returned to Mississippi in 1964, at fifty-six years of age, to assume leadership in a rural church. He served as pastor of Hurricane Creek Primitive Baptist Church and Rocky Mount Primitive Baptist Church for over thirty years.

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