To understand the purpose and drive of our chapter, it is best to explore the foundation first. Birthed out of the Black Migration (a grassroots movement for freedom and opportunity), the National Urban League played a pivotal role in the 20th-Century Freedom Movement. While trying to migrate to the North, newcomers discovered they, in fact, had not escaped the racial discrimination of the South. Northern settlers were excluded from all but menial jobs in the larger society, victimized by poor housing and education, and while inexperienced in the ways of urban living, many lived in terrible social and economic conditions.
Even still, in a differential battle between the South and North, greater opportunities were attainable for African Americans in the latter. Successfully capitalizing on such opportunities, adapting to urban life and reducing the pervasive discrimination, black migrants knew they could accomplish much more together rather than individually. In lieu of such realization, the Committee on Urban Conditions Among Negroes was formed on September 29, 1910 in New York City. Central to the organization's founding were two remarkable people: Mrs. Ruth Standish Baldwin and Dr. George Edmund Haynes. The Committee on Urban Conditions Among Negroes eventually merged with the Committee for the Improvement of Industrial Conditions Among Negroes and the National League for the Protection of Colored Women to form the National League on Urban Conditions Among Negroes, and in 1920, the name was shortened to the National Urban League.