Dawson Banks, Sr., 1983

Born in 1898 in Monticello, Georgia, Mr. Banks came to Champaign in 1925 and got a job as a fireman at Clifford and Jacobs Steel Mill where about 15 Black men were employed. He worked there to support his wife and six children until 1952 when he opened Banks Bar-B-Q, a hang-out especially popular among teen-agers.

Source: Raymond Bial's In All My Years: Portraits of Older Blacks In Champaign-Urbana, Champaign County Historical Museum, 1983.