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Belgian Settlement and Society in the Indiana Rust Belt

Susan E. Hume
Geographical Review
Vol. 93, No. 1 (Jan., 2003), pp. 30-50
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/30033888
Page Count: 21
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Belgian Settlement and Society in the Indiana Rust Belt
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Abstract

At first glance the industrial city of Mishawaka, near the northern border of Indiana, appears to be ethnically homogeneous. Closer examination, however, reveals the rich ethnic heritage of Mishawaka, as it does in so many other Rust Belt cities from Pittsburgh to Chicago. One of the most fascinating of these immigrant stories is the rise of Belgian Town, on Mishawaka's southwest side. This study examines residential, commercial, and social patterns of this evolving ethnic community during the first three decades of the twentieth century. Although industrial jobs attracted immigrants to the city, creation of a Flemish Catholic church provided the foundation on which to build a tightly knit Belgian community.

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