The town of Idlewild near Baldwin was started as a resort town for African Americans in the early part of the 1900s. Because of descrimination, many African Americans were limited to where they could vacation. Called the “Black Eden of Michigan”, from 1912 through the mid-1960s, Idlewild was an active year-round community and was visited by well-known entertainers and professionals from throughout the country. The Flimingo Club opened in 1955 was a popular place for many of the top African American entertainers to perform such as Sarah Vaughan, Jackie Wilson, and the Four Tops. After the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 opened up more opportunities for African Americans to purchase cottages and vacation in other parts of the state, the popularity of Idlewild declined. By 1968, the Flamingo Club closed.
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