Gaping Disparity in Treatment of White and Black Soldiers
By October 1946, the G.I. Bill had placed 6,500 former soldiers in nonfarm jobs in Mississippi; 86 percent of the skilled and semiskilled jobs were filled by whites, 92 percent of the unskilled ones by Blacks. In New York and northern New Jersey, fewer than 100 of the 67,000 mortgages insured by the G.I. Bill supported home purchases by nonwhites. Discrimination continued as well in elite Northern colleges. The University of Pennsylvania, along with Columbia the least discriminatory of the Ivy League colleges, enrolled only 46 Black students in its student body of 9,000 in 1946. The traditional Black colleges did not have places for an estimated 70,000 Black veterans in 1947. At the same time, white universities were doubling their enrollments and prospering with the infusion of public and private funds, and of students with their G.I. benefits.