Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program




Major Professor

Hirsch, Arnold

Second Advisor

Mizell-Nelson, Michael

Third Advisor

Powers, Madelon


In December of 1966 the United States government decided to place a $375 million atomic accelerator in the all-white, rural town of Weston, Illinois. The small town was located 30 miles west of Chicago, within an affluent suburban county named DuPage. Residents of DuPage were thrilled to receive the atomic installation because it would spark new economic growth in the area. However, the National Committee Against Discrimination in Housing (NCDH) immediately protested the approval of the Weston site. They opposed the site choice because of a documented history of racial housing discrimination in and around Weston. In 1967, the NCDH hoped to utilize the Cold War scientific research plant as political leverage to abolish racial housing discrimination in suburban Chicago. This study argues that the eventual failure of the NCDH’s Weston protest illustrates the limits of the federal fair housing policy changes during the late 1960s.


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