Liberty city

Who I am
Martí Micolau

Author and references


  • History of the neighborhood
  • To see

The Model City neighborhood, more commonly known as Liberty City, is a part of the city of Miami located northwest of the more famous Downtown Miami.

History of the neighborhood

The history of Liberty City begins in the 30s, when the New Deal di Franklin Delano Roosevelt led to the birth of new residential areas, to lighten the burden of residents of the neighboring town overtown and improve their living conditions. It was then that this became one of the most sought after residential neighborhoods by exponents of the African American community.

In the 40s and 50s, Liberty City became the center of the struggle against racial segregation carried out in those decades.
The neighborhood experienced several moments of tension in the 60s and 70s, after the promulgation of laws to safeguard the civil rights of people of color; tensions that culminated in the terrible uprising of 1980.

Liberty City is now emancipating itself from degradation and poverty, and is the right place to explore if you want to learn more about the struggle for civil rights of people of color.

To see

Liberty Square and "Il Muro"

Liberty Square is the first, true, project of public housing completed in the United States. Between the sixties and the eighties he was at the center of the struggle for civil rights.

“The Wall” of Liberty City is a structure that was built in 1930, in conjunction with the buildings of Liberty Square, to separate the “white Miami” from the “black Miami”. This symbol of decay and discrimination was shot down in the 50s. Today only a small portion of it remains standing, the one that separates Northwest 12th Avenue from Northwest 12th Parkway.

Martin Luther King Boulevard

This commercial street, which runs from east to west and also runs through the neighborhoods of Little Haiti, Brownsville and Hialeah, was named after a man who fought hard for the defense of civil rights. Martin Luther King. At Brownsville you can admire a statue of him.

Murals on 62nd Street

The Liberty City area is full of murals celebrating its history and cultural heritage, and this is one of the most interesting: painted by the artist Oscar Thomas, the mural represents the legacy left to the world by Martin Luther King.

Gwen Cherry Park

This park is named after State Representative Gwen Cherry (daughter of Miami's first black doctor, Dr. William A. Sawyer), Florida's first elected black woman.

The African Heritage Cultural Arts Center

This complex opened its doors in 1974, with the aim of becoming a meeting point for the young people and artists of the neighborhood. At the center, equipped with an auditorium, exhibitions, art and dance classes and community-related events are held.

Joseph Caleb Community Center

The Joseph Caleb Community Center, built in the time of President Lyndon B. Johnson's “Great Society” to help people in poverty, is now a center for political forums and entertainment.

Inside there are also a library and Black Archives, which cherish the history of Miami's black people.

Georgette’s Tea Room

This beautiful Tudor-style building, built by Georgette Campbell in 1954, has been the refuge of many great personalities of color, such as Nat King Cole and Billie Holiday.

Miami Times Building

The Miami Times, founded in 1923 by Henry ES Reeves, is the oldest newspaper in Miami owned by a black person. Initially located in Overtown, it later moved to Liberty City, in the current building.

Evergreen Memorial Park Cemetery e Lincoln Memorial Park Cemetery

Evergreen Memorial Park Cemetery, which in 1991 was listed as a place of historical significance, is one of two cemeteries where, in the past, people of color could have a worthy burial.

The other cemetery where black people could be buried in dignity is Lincoln Memorial Park Cemetery; Buried here are Dr William A. Sawyer, Arthur and Polly Mays, who opened a school for black children, and Florence Gaskins.

Hampton House

This old hotel, which opened in 1954, was referred to as the "Social Center of The South".
Here the meetings of the CORE (The Congress of Racial Equality) were held, and it was frequented by Martin Luther King and Muhammad Ali. The Hampton House Community Trust was established in 2001 with the aim of safeguarding the building and restoring it to its former glory.

How to reach Liberty City

Liberty City is easily accessible by Miami's main means of public transportation: the MetroRail, the elevated railway that connects different areas of the city, and the MetroBus, the city bus service.

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