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Aunt Jemima’s Great-Grandson Upset Her Brand is Getting Dropped

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Aunt Jemimaby Mark Konkol, Patch

A great-grandson of “Aunt Jemima” doesn’t want Quaker Oats — or white America, for that matter — to easily erase its racist history by “retiring” the iconic breakfast brand.

Recently, Chicago-based Quaker Foods announced it would eliminate the Aunt Jemima brand of pancake mix and syrup in response to civil unrest and protests calling for racial equity across America sparked by the killing of George Floyd, a black man who died with his neck under the knee of a white Minnesota police officer.

“This is an injustice for me and my family. This is part of my history, sir,” Larnell Evans Sr. told me. “The racism they talk about, using images from slavery, that comes from the other side — white people. This company profits off images of our slavery. And their answer is to erase my great-grandmother’s history. A black female .… It hurts.”

The first “Aunt Jemima” debuted at Chicago’s World’s Fair in 1893. Former enslaved woman Nancy Green, who worked as a cook on the South Side, was hired to wear an apron and headscarf while serving pancakes to folks who came to visit the fairgrounds known as “The White City.” Green embodied the Aunt Jemima character until her death in 1923.

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© 2020 Patch Media

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