Segregation at the Swimming Pool

Courtesy: Library of Congress

Seventy percent of African American kids can't swim and are nearly three times more likely to drown. But why? In this episode, Caroline and Cristen examine pre-Civil Rights racism at the swimming pool, 'white flight' from municipal pools and more.

Episode sources:

Gov't safety group urges swimming lessons in black and Hispanic communities.

Jones mentors young swimmers.

Racial History of American Swimming Pools.

Reports Finds a Gap Persists in Swimming.

Research Study Reveals 60 -70% of African-American and Hispanic Kids Can't Swim.

Summertime and Swimming Pool Racism.

Swim lessons help minority children break cycle.

Unintentional Drowning: Get the Facts.

Academic insights:

Contested Waters: A Social History of Swimming Pools in America. Jeff Wilte. UNC Press. 2010.

"Race, Place, and Play: Robert Moses and the WPA Swimming Pools in New York City." Marta Gutman. Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. December 2008.

Topics in this Podcast: history, swimming, race, racism, exercise