Before 1938


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Before 1938

“Bakersfield Realty and Building Co. is Organized,” Bakersfield Californian, May 14, 1909 page 1

Bakersfield Realty organizations supported race restrictions in housing covenants. This 1909 article announced the organization of the Bakersfield Realty Building Company in 1909 stating, “All lots will be restricted to not less than $1000 dwellings, as well as to members of the Caucasian race, and no saloons will be permitted on the property.” Prior to 1938, home deeds featured racially exclusive language.


In a report conducted by the State of California in 1930 found that there were 24 out of 47 replies that cities had segregated Mexican Districts.
“In addition, other boards cited clauses inserted in deeds and sales contracts calculated to confine Orientals, Mexicans, and Negroes, to certain districts.”

Segregated districts

Mexicans in California; report of Governor C. C. Young’s Mexican Fact Finding Committee, 1930


Here is an example of racially exclusive language used in 1924. This is not to say that housing discrimination did not exist, but that housing was segregated at the individual home level, led by sellers and real estate agents. It is not until after 1938, that racially restrictive covenants are used at large scale for entire tracts, neighborhoods, and blocks. The Bakersfield grant deed reads, “The lands herein conveyed shall never, at any time, be sold to or rented to or occupied by any person not of the white or Caucasian race.” This is an example of a racially exclusive covenant written in a deed.