Race Problem on Railroads

North Carolina plans for Jim Crow cars draw attention.


The Plan in North Carolina for Running Separate Coaches.

RALEIGH, N.C., Dec. 11. - There has been a demand for separate coaches for the whites and blacks on the railroads of this State ever since the war, but the influence of the railroads has been sufficient to prevent the introduction of the "Jim Crow" cars as they are called by the negroes. The argument of the railroads was that separate coaches would add greatly to the expense of the railroads, and this prevailed with the Legislature and the Railroad Commission until now.

Last week there was a resolution before the commission requiring the railroads to provide separate coaches for the races, and, after argument, it was laid aside in order that the Legislature at its session, which begins on the second Wednesday in January, may provide for this new feature in transportation by regular enactment. Some of the railroad shave withdrawn their opposition to the "Jim Crow" cars, with the understanding that the second-class fare will be abolished, and the first-class fare reduced from 3 1/4 cents to 3 cents. This is the plan that is in force in South Carolina and other Southern States where the "Jim Crow" car prevails. It is known that Col. A. B. Andrews, First Vice President of the Southern Railway, has withdrawn his opposition, and favors the reduction of the fare to 3 cents and the abolition of the second-class fare.

Of course the same accommodations are to be provided for the same money, but notwithstanding this fact, it is well known that there is nothing connected with the race problem that so galls and cuts the negro as the policy of separate cars for the races. It is an unerring fact that the negro never goes into a second-class car if he has the money to pay for first-class accommodation.

Here in Raleigh, where the Union Station has a separate room for the negroes, there has been continual opposition and complaint on the part of the negroes. The result of the recent election has settled this matter, and it will be put into law by the incoming legislature, and there will be no opposition thereto by the negroes. The white people seem to be in no humor for any delay in carrying out this policy.

About this Document

  • Source: New York Times
  • Date: December 18, 1898