AC native Jacob Lawrence in Casino Connection

My Atlantic City history column in March’s Casino Connection has nothing to do with gambling. Instead, I look briefly at the career of an artist who was born in Atlantic City, Jacob Lawrence:

Dozens of notable figures have played a part in Atlantic City’s history, from Thomas Edison and Diamond Jim Brady to Jay-Z and Donald Trump. Yet few people know that one of the most respected American artists of the 20th century was born here.Jacob Armistead Lawrence’s family was part of the “Great Migration” during and after World War I, in which thousands of black Southerners moved North in search of better lives, far from Jim Crow. The Lawrence family came to Atlantic City, where Jacob was born on September 7, 1917.

via Jacob’s Ladder | Casino Connection Atlantic City.

I enjoy the chance to write about non-gaming/hospitality topics, particular for the Atlantic City column, and have a few more planned in the near future. Of course, next month I’m tackling a little Trump Taj Mahal history in honor of the 20th anniversary of its opening. It’s hard to believe it’s been that long. I remember when the New Delhi Deli was the hot new restaurant in town–it was replaced by the Hard Rock a long time ago.

Lawrence was an interesting subject because he didn’t live in the city for long, but was clearly the kind of artist who picked up a great deal from his surroundings, so his early influences might have had an important role in shaping his work.

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