East_St._Louis__Illinois by zzzmarcus


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East St. Louis, Illinois

East St. Louis, Illinois
East St. Louis City Country State County Area - land - water Center - coordinates United States Illinois St. Clair 14.4 sq mi (37.3 km²) 14.0 sq mi (36.26 km²) 0.4 sq mi (1.04 km²), 2.78% 38°36′56″N 90°07′40″W / 38.61556°N 90.12778°W / 38.61556; -90.12778Coordinates: 38°36′56″N 90°07′40″W / 38.61556°N 90.12778°W / 38.61556; -90.12778 31,542 (2000) 2,242.9 /sq mi (866 /km²) Council-Manager June 6, 1820 Alvin Parks, Jr CST (UTC-6) CDT (UTC-5) 62201 62202 62203 62204 62205 62206 62207 618

Population Density Government type founded Mayor Time zone - summer (DST) Postal code Area code

Location of East St. Louis within Illinois

Location of Illinois in the United States Website : www.cesl.us

East St. Louis is a city located in St. Clair County, Illinois, USA, directly across the Mississippi River from St. Louis, Missouri. As of the 2000 census, the city had a total population of 31,542, less than half its peak in 1959. Like many larger industrial cities, it was


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severely affected by loss of jobs in the restructuring of the railroad industry and deindustrialization of the Rust Belt in the second half of the 20th century. One of the highlights of the city’s waterfront is the Gateway Geyser, the tallest fountain in the United States. Designed to complement the Gateway Arch across the river in St. Louis, it raises water to a height of 630 feet (190 m), the same height as the arch. It is part of the redevelopment of the waterfront.

East St. Louis, Illinois
industry prompted strikes and unrest on a massive scale. While most of the strikes in the eastern cities during 1877 were accompanied by violence and mayhem, the late July 1877 St. Louis strike was marked by a bloodless, efficient and quick take-over by dissatisfied workers of commerce and transportation in the area. By July 22, the St. Louis Commune began to take shape as representatives from almost all the railroad lines met in East St. Louis. They soon elected an executive committee to command the strike and issued General Order No. 1, halting all railroad traffic other than passenger and mail trains. John Bowman, the mayor of East St. Louis, was appointed arbitrator of the committee. He helped the committee select special police to guard the property of the railroads from damage. The strike and the new de facto workers’ government, while given encouragement by the largely German-American Workingmen’s Party and the Knights of Labor (two key players in the organization of the Missouri general strike), were run by no organized labor group. The strike reached the business sector by closing packing industry houses surrounding the National Stockyards. At one plant, workers allowed processing of 125 cattle in return for 500 cans of beef for the workers. The strike continued to gain momentum, with different regions and workers asking to join in. Though the East St. Louis strike continued in an orderly fashion, across the river there were isolated incidents of violence. Harry Eastman, the East St. Louis workers’ representative, addressed the mass of employees: "Go home to your different wards and organize your different unions, but don’t keep coming up here in great bodies and stirring up excitement. Ask the Mayor, as we did, to close up all the saloons... keep sober and orderly, and when you are organized, apply to the United Workingmen for orders. Don’t plunder ... don’t interfere with the railroads here ... let us attend to that". On July 28 the strike was peacefully ended when US troops took over the Relay Depot, the Commune’s command center.[3]

Native Americans long inhabited both sides of the Mississippi River at this point. Mound builders of the Mississippian culture constructed mounds at what became St. Louis and East St. Louis, as well as the large settlement of Cahokia to the north of East St. Louis near present day Collinsville, Illinois. East St. Louis lays within the American Bottoms area of the present day Metro-East area of St. Louis, Missouri. After European settlement, East St. Louis’ original name was "Illinoistown."[1] Several destructive tornadoes have hit East St. Louis, the deadliest being the St. Louis-East St. Louis Tornado of 1896 which killed at least 255, injured over 1000, and incurred an estimated $2.9 billion in damages (1997 USD).[2]

The Great Railroad Strike of 1877 and the St. Louis commune
A period of extensive industrial growth followed the American Civil War. In the expansion, many businessmen became overextended in credit, and a major economic collapse followed the Panic of 1873. This was due to railroad and other manufacturing expansion, land speculation and general business optimism caused by large profits from inflation. The economic recession began in the East and steadily moved west, severely crippling the railroads, the main system of transportation. In response to the difficulties, railroad companies began dramatically lowering workers’ wages, forcing employees to work without pay, and cutting jobs and the amount of paid work hours. These wage cuts and additional money-saving tactics used by the

The East St. Louis riots of 1917
East St. Louis in 1917 had a strong industrial economy boosted by World War I. Many workers entered the military and the other


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workers that were left went on strike. The war prevented immigration from Europe. Major companies recruited black migrants from the South to work at the Aluminum Ore Company and the American Steel Company. They were available because the US Army initially rejected many black volunteers in the years before an integrated military.[4] Resentment on both sides and the arrival of new workers created fears for job security and raised social tensions. At a white labor meeting on May 28, men traded rumors of black men’s and white women’s fraternizing. Three thousand white men left the meeting and headed as a mob for the downtown, where they randomly attacked black men on the street. They destroyed buildings and physically attacked people, but no one was killed. The governor called in National Guard to prevent further rioting, but rumors continued to circulate about an organized retaliation from the blacks. On July 1, 1917, a black man attacked a white man. Whites drove by shooting in retaliation. When police came to investigate, the black attacker proceeded to fire on the police and wounded at least one. The next morning, thousands of white spectators marched into the black section of town. The rioters burned entire sections of the city and shot blacks as they escaped the flames. They also lynched several blacks. Although the governor had called in the National Guard to try to control the situation, several accounts reported that they joined in the rioting. The mob included "ten or fifteen white women, [who] chased a negro woman at the Relay Depot in broad daylight. The girls were brandishing clubs and calling upon the men to kill the woman." 2 The woman was a known prostitute frequented by white men.

East St. Louis, Illinois
1999, covering music of cities along the Mississippi River. The city was dramatically affected by midcentury deindustrialization and restructuring. As a number of local factories began to close because of changes in industry, the railroad and meatpacking industries also were cutting back and moving jobs out of the region. This led to a precipitous loss of working and middle-class jobs. The city’s financial conditions deteriorated. Elected in 1951, Mayor Alvin Fields resorted to ill-judged funding procedures to try to buy the city out of its financial morass. The scheme increased the city’s bonded indebtedness and the property tax rate. More businesses closed as workers left the area to seek jobs in other regions. Crime increased as a result of poverty and lack of opportunities. The city is also left with expensive clean-up of brownfields, areas with environmental contamination by heavy industry that makes redevelopment more difficult. Street gangs such as the War Lords, Black Egyptians, 29th Street Stompers and Hustlers appeared in city neighborhoods. Like other cities with endemic problems by the 1960s, East St. Louis suffered riots in the latter part of the decade. In September 1967, rioting occurred in the city’s South End. Also, in the summer of 1968, a still-unsolved series of sniping attacks took place. These events contributed to residential mistrust and adversely affected the downtown retail base and the city’s income. Construction of freeways and urban sprawl contributed to East St. Louis’ decline as well. The freeways cut through and broke up existing neighborhoods and community networks. The freeways also made it easier for residents to commute back and forth from suburban homes, so more were inclined to move to newer housing. East St. Louis adopted a number of programs to try to reverse decline — the Model Cities program, the Concentrated Employment Program and Operation Breakthrough. The programs were not enough to offset the industrial restructuring. In 1971, James Williams was elected as the city’s first black mayor. Faced with overwhelming economic problems, he was unable to stop the city’s decline and depopulation. By the election of Carl Officer as mayor (the youngest in the country at that time at age 25) in 1979, many said the city had nowhere to go but up, yet things grew worse. Middle-

East St. Louis was named an All-America City in 1959, having retained prosperity through the decade as its population reached a peak of 82,295 residents. Through the 1950s and later, the city’s musicians were an integral creative force in blues, rock and roll and jazz. Some left and achieved national recognition, like Ike and Tina Turner, and jazz great Miles Davis, who was born in nearby Alton and grew up in East St. Louis. Many were featured on the PBS series River of Song in


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class whites and African Americans left the city. People who could get jobs simply went to where there was work and decent quality of life. Because the city had to cut back on maintenance, sewers failed and garbage pickup ceased. Police cars often did not work, and neither did their radios. The East St. Louis Fire Department went on strike in the 1970s. Before Gordon Bush was elected mayor in 1991, the state imposed a financial advisory board to manage the city in exchange for a financial bailout. State legislative approval in 1990 of riverboat gambling and the installation of the Casino Queen riverboat casino provided the first new source of income for the city in nearly 30 years. The past decade can be characterized as one of redevelopment and renewal. In 2001 the city completed a new library. It also built a new city hall. Public-private partnerships have resulted in a variety of new retail developments, housing initiatives, and the St. Louis Metrolink light rail, which have sparked renewal. Access to the Metrolink from the East Side has become a controversy in the Saint Louis Metro Area, as a 2008 article in the Riverfront Times stated that it has resulted in skyrocketing crime rates on the west side of the River in affluent suburbs. [5] The city, now small in terms of population, is still one of the prime examples of drastic urban blight in the country. Sections of "urban prairie" can be found where vacant buildings were torn down and whole blocks became overgrown with vegetation. As East St. Louis has suffered from white flight and disinvestment for many years already, much of the territory surrounding the city remains undeveloped to this day, bypassed for growth in more affluent suburban areas. Thus, many old, "inner city" neighborhoods abut large swaths of corn and soybean fields or otherwise vacant land. In addition to agricultural uses, a number of truck stops, strip clubs, and other semi-rural businesses surround blighted areas in the city as well. An incident occurred in August 2008 at a RoCorp chemical plant in the city that caused the spillage of a toxic white powder that seriously sickened several people and caused at least two area emergency rooms to be quarantined and locked down; it was not a terrorist incident or a release of anthrax, but an accident from ordinary nitroaniline.[6]

East St. Louis, Illinois

Famous natives or residents
• Unladylike - Rap group signed to Def Jam. • Josephine Baker survived the 1917 race riots in East St. Louis and ran away at age 13 to dance in Vaudeville on Broadway and, most famously, with the Folies Bergère in Paris. There she became an international star. During World War II, Baker gathered intelligence for the French Resistance. • New York Yankees player Hank Bauer was born in East St. Louis in 1922. He played for the New York Yankees from 1949-59 and won seven World Series championships. • Homer Bush (b. November 12, 1972, in East St. Louis, Illinois) was a Major League Baseball second baseman with a career .285 batting average, who played for the New York Yankees, Toronto Blue Jays and Florida Marlins. • Donald McHenry (b. 1936) United States Ambassador to the United Nations from 1979 to 1981, grew up in East St. Louis. • Tennis legend Jimmy Connors was born in East St. Louis, and grew up near Frank Holten State Park. • Bryan Cox, former NFL player, is a native of East St. Louis. Cox has been a major philanthropist for East St. Louis High School and his Alma Mater Western Illinois University. • Jazz legend Miles Davis was born in Alton, Illinois but grew up in East St. Louis. • Katherine Dunham ;dancer, choreographer, anthropologist and author; introduced U.S. and European audiences to Caribbean- and African-based dance movements. She returned to East St. Louis, established an arts center and lived there until towards the end of her life, she resided in New York under the care of Harry Belefonte. • Richard Durbin Senior U.S. Senator of Illinois, born and raised in East St. Louis, graduate of Assumption High School, and currently the Democratic Party Whip for the United States Senate. • LaPhonso Ellis, former NBA player, is a native of East St. Louis. • Tyron K. Taylor Born in 1957; Member of the Western Illinois University Athletic Hall of Fame-Track and Field.


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• Kerry Raymond Glenn, former NFL player was born and raised in East St. Louis, Ill. He played in the NFL for the New York Jets 1985-1990 and the Miami Dolphins 1990-1993. • Dana Howard- former NFL player who was born and raised in East St. Louis. • Reginald Hudlin, who wrote and directed the 1990s films House Party, was born in East St. Louis. • Track legend Jackie Joyner-Kersee was born and raised in East St. Louis. • Dawn Harper, Gold Medalist in 100 meter hurdles at the 2008 Beijing Olympic Games. • Al Joyner, track gold medalist and brother of Jackie Joyner-Kersee, was born and raised in East St. Louis. • Blues legends Albert King and B.B. King have ties to the city. • Darius Miles, current NBA player, is a native of East St. Louis. • Ike Turner met Tina Turner in 1956 at the Club Manhattan in East St. Louis. She joined his band and they later married. • Kellen Boswell Winslow (born 1957 in St. Louis and raised in East St. Louis) is a former professional American football tight end with the San Diego Chargers. In 1995 Kellen was inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame. • The poet Robert Wrigley was born in East St. Louis in 1951. • City Poet Laureate Eugene B. Redmond is a native of East St. Louis. He has taught across the country and locally, and established the Eugene B. Redmond Writers Club in his hometown. • Erin Brown (born Erin DeWright on October 16, 1979) is a horror film actress, model, filmmaker, and former softcore pornographic actress. Brown has starred in over 50 low-budget films, under the names Erin Brown and Misty Mundae, was born in East St. Louis • Ali Mroueh Marja of the mid Western United States. One of the certified religious authorities in the whole western hemisphere. Worships Nat • Frank Rigney (b. 1936), an All State football player for the East St. Louis Flyers, played at the University of Iowa, and as an offensive tackle for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers on their 1958, 59, 61 and 62 Grey Cup Championship teams in the Canadian Football League. A three

East St. Louis, Illinois
time CFL all-star, Frank was inducted into the Canadian Football Hall of Fame in 1984. Frank worked as a color commentator for CBC and CTV in Canada. Michael Stephen Magac (1938-2003) played football at Assumption High School. He was an All American Guard at the University of Missouri - Columbia and then played for the San Francisco 49ers from 1960 to 1964 and the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1965 and 1966. Terry Hanson Born and raised in East St. Louis attending St. Elizabeth’s Grade School and Assumption High School. He was a star baseball pitcher at Assumption and played and then coached at St. Benedict’s College in Kansas. He later went on to a career in media/pro sports and presently owns Hanson Enterprises in North Carolina. Dorothy Bartholemy(1914 - 2005) Artist who lived in East St. Louis and studied at the St. Louis School of Fine Arts (now Washington U. in St. Louis) and did many semi-abstract portraits of AfricanAmerican life. Bill Walker - was a former professional baseball player. Eric C. Wright former outstanding All-Pro Defensive player for the San Francisco 49ers, raised in East St. Louis - attended Assumption High School. Jerry Costello - Member of the U.S. House of Representatives since 1988 - born and raised in East St. Louis and attended Assumption High School. Harry Edwards Professor Emeritus of Sociology at the University of California, Berkeley, former consultant to the San Francisco 49ers. [The late actress Shelly Winters}was born Shelly Schrift in East St. Louis on August 18, 1922 and resided there until her family relocated to New York.




• •




Registered historic places
• • • • Majestic Theatre (East St. Louis) Pennsylvania Avenue Historic District Spivey Building Old East St. Louis Publc Library


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East St. Louis, Illinois
Louis had entire neighborhoods burned out in 1976 during a massive urban fire, which suited the directors vision of a Manhattan Island that has been turned into a maximum security prison. • In the 1983 comedy National Lampoon’s Vacation, The Griswolds accidentally drive through East St. Louis and get their car stripped while asking for directions. • The 1992 film Trespass takes place almost entirely in East St. Louis.

East St. Louis in popular culture
• In an episode of Leave It to Beaver, Hugh Beaumont (Ward Cleaver) mentioned that Barbara Billingsley (June Cleaver) was the "Former Belle of East St. Louis." • In The Simpsons episode "They Saved Lisa’s Brain," the local chapter of Mensa takes over the government of Springfield and improves the city to 299th place on America’s list of 300 most livable cities, displacing East St. Louis. According to the DVD commentary for this episode, this joke caused a lot of controversy. • Aaron McGruder and Reginald Hudlin penned a 2004 graphic novel Birth of a Nation, in which they theorize what would happen if the 2000 Florida election debacle had instead happened in East St. Louis, resulting in ESL seceding from the nation and creating its own called "Republic of Blackland."[7] • Comic book author Dennis O’Neil of St. Louis based The Question’s fictional Hub City on East St. Louis.[7] • Duke Ellington and Bubber Miley wrote a song, "East St. Louis Toodle-Oo", which also appeared on the Steely Dan album Pretzel Logic. • East St. Louis-born rapper Raw Resse talks about the city in his song, "This is My City" • In and episode of That 70’s Show Kitty Foreman, outraged over her husband Red Foreman and son Steven Hyde selling Heart medication, says that they have "turned my living room into East St. Louis."


East St. Louis township. East St. Louis is located at 38°36’56" North, 90°7’40" West (38.615550, -90.127825).[8] According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 14.4 square miles (37.4 km²), of which, 14.1 square miles (36.4 km²) of it is land and 0.4 square miles (1.0 km²) of it is water. The total area is 2.56% water. East St. Louis usually experiences cold winters and warm summers. On July 14, 1954 the temperature at East Saint Louis unexpectedly rose to 117 °F (48 °C), the highest temperature ever recorded in Illinois.

• In the films Going My Way (1944) and The Bells of St. Mary’s (1945), the character of Father Charles O’Malley (played by Bing Crosby) was from East St. Louis. He sang the "East St. Louis High" alma mater ("Hail alma mater, thy time-honored halls shall echo with our praise till we die, and round our hearts are the ivy-covered walls of East St. Louis High.") in Going My Way. • In the 1981 science fiction/action film Escape from New York, director John Carpenter used East St. Louis to represent a decaying, semi-destroyed future version of New York City. At that time, East St.

East St. Louis has one of the highest crime rates in the United States. According to FBI’s data of 2006, its murder rate hit 83.8 per population of 100,000, surpassing that of cities such as Compton, California (40.4 per pop. 100,000), Gary, Indiana (48.3 per pop.


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Crime Murder Rape Robbery Assault Burglary Automobile Theft East Saint Louis 83.8 251.3 1,347.0 5,847.3 2,442.8 2,067.5

East St. Louis, Illinois
National Average 6.9 32.2 195.4 340.1 814.5 526.5 2000 31,542

100,000), New Orleans, Louisiana (37.6 per pop. 100,000), Richmond, Virginia (38.8), Baltimore, Maryland (43.3), Camden, New Jersey (40.0), Detroit, Michigan (47.3), and Washington, D.C. (29.1), as well as that of its neighbor St. Louis (37.2). FBI data also shows East St. Louis’ high rate of rape, which exceeded 250 per population of 100,000. East Saint Louis and Opa Locka, Florida have the highest crime rates in the United States (Opa Locka had the absolute highest crime rate in 2003 and 2004 for cities of any population.) The following table shows East St. Louis’ crime rate in 6 crimes that Morgan Quitno uses for their calculation for "America’s most dangerous cities" ranking, in comparison to the national average:[9] Year: 2006 number of crimes per 100,000.

−22.9% −8.1%

Est. 2007 28,996

East St. Louis is home to four St. Louis MetroLink stations; East Riverfront, 5th & Missouri, Emerson Park, and JJK Center.

Historical populations Census Pop. %± 5,044 — 1870 9,185 82.1% 1880 1890 1900 1910 1920 1930 1940 1950 1960 1970 1980 1990 15,169 29,734 58,540 66,785 74,397 75,603 82,366 81,728 70,029 55,239 40,921 65.1% 96.0% 96.9% 14.1% 11.4% 1.6% 8.9% −0.8% −14.3% −21.1% −25.9%

As of the census[11] of 2000, there were 31,542 people, 11,178 households, and 7,668 families residing in the city. The population density is 2,242.9 people per square mile (866.2/km²). There are 12,899 housing units at an average density of 917.2/sq mi (354.2/ km²). The racial makeup of the city was 97.39% African-American, 0.38% White, 1.34% Asian, 0.06% Pacific Islander, 0.30% from other races, and 0.52% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 0.88% of the population. There are 11,178 households out of which 33.2% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 21.9% are married couples living together, 40.6% have a female householder with no husband present, and 31.4% are non-families. 27.8% of all households are made up of individuals and 10.4% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.80 and the average family size is 3.42. In the city the population is spread out with 32.8% under the age of 18, 9.7% from 18 to 24, 24.6% from 25 to 44, 20.3% from 45 to 64, and 12.5% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 31 years. For every 100 females there are 81.5 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 72.5 males. The median income for a household in the city is $21,324, and the median income for a family is $24,567. Males have a median income of $27,864 versus $21,850 for females. The per capita income for the city is $11,169. 35.1% of the population and 31.8% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total population, 48.6% of those under the age of 18 and 25.2% of those 65 and older are living below the poverty line.


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East St. Louis, Illinois
2005-05-03. http://www.census.gov/geo/ www/gazetteer/gazette.html. Retrieved on 2008-01-31. [9] City-Data.com [10] [2] [11] "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. http://factfinder.census.gov. Retrieved on 2008-01-31. • Heaps, Willard Allison. "Target of Prejudice: The Negro." Riots, U.S.A., 1765–1970. New York: The Seabury Press, 1970. 108–117. • Kozol, Jonathan. "Life on the Mississippi." Savage Inequalities: Children in America’s Schools. Crown, 1991. 7–39. ISBN 0-517-58221-X • "Race Rioters Fire East St. Louis and Shoot or Hang Many Negroes; Dead Estimated at from 20 to 76." New York Times 3 July 1917.

The city is served by the East St. Louis School District 189 [3]. All residents are zoned to East St. Louis High School.

[1] Meier, Jenee. "Alumnus’ book highlights history of East St. Louis". Southern Illinois University at Edwardsville Alestle. http://www.siue.edu/ALESTLE/ library/SPRING2001/apr03/ alumnus.html. Retrieved on 2007-07-25. [2] East St. Louis: Description, Illinois.com, accessed 19 April 2008 [3] [1] [4] A Chronology of African American Military Service: From WWI through WWII [5] ""Out-of-control shoplifting at the St. Louis Galleria. Violent attacks in the Delmar Loop. Is MetroLink a vehicle for crime?"". http://www.riverfronttimes.com/ 2008-08-20/news/out-of-controlshoplifting-at-the-st-louis-galleria-violentattacks-in-the-delmar-loop-is-metrolink-avehicle-for-crime/. Retrieved on 2008-11-27. , [6] ""East St. Louis mayor: No further cause for concern about chemical spill" Belleville News-Democrat On-Line". http://www.bnd.com/389/story/ 455649.html. Retrieved on 2008-09-01. , [7] ^ McElhattan, Greg (2004-08-05). "Birth of a Nation". ReadAboutComics.com. http://www.readaboutcomics.com/2004/ 08/05/birth-of-a-nation/. Retrieved on 2007-07-25. [8] "US Gazetteer files: 2000 and 1990". United States Census Bureau.

External links
• City of East St. Louis official web site • The IBEX Archive: ESLARP’s Social History Project - Cultural and historical material on East St. Louis. Includes a bibliography and several links • IDOT Survey - History of East St. Louis • Photos of East St. Louis • Evocative photos from Built St. Louis • City-Data.com - East St. Louis, Illinois • Downtown East St. Louis • Metrolink station • ruined old church • ruined house • East St. Louis Flyers Football • inBox Magazine & DVD | East St. Louis Premier Magazine • WikiTravel East St. Louis

Retrieved from "http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_St._Louis,_Illinois" Categories: Cities in Illinois, Communities on U.S. Route 66, St. Clair County, Illinois, Twin cities, United States communities with African American majority populations, East St. Louis, Illinois, Settlements established in 1820, Settlements on the Mississippi River This page was last modified on 10 May 2009, at 05:12 (UTC). All text is available under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License. (See Copyrights for details.) Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a U.S. registered 501(c)(3) taxdeductible nonprofit charity. Privacy policy About Wikipedia Disclaimers


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