About the Authors


Their book reveals the rhythm of the streets and the musical language of the people.

The story is as juicy and as fast as one of Runny Walker’s best columns - and the illustrations are stunning, original artworks that take you straight to the action, and the emotion, of Bronzeville.

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Donald Brooks Jones and Philip Mallory Jones are natives of Chicago. Their grandparents arrived in Bronzeville at the beginning of the Great Migration just before the Red Summer of 1919.

Donald lives in Atlanta. His memoir, Little Did I Know: The Coming of Age of a Black Boomer, depicts his high school years as his family moved from Chicago to Memphis in the wake of the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. 

Dateline: Bronzeville is his first work of fiction.

Philip is an internationally recognized media artist, innovator, and scholar. He has received commendations and support from many national and international organizations, including the National Endowment for the Arts, the Rockefeller Foundation, and the Ford Foundation. 


Author Statement

In many ways, Dateline: Bronzeville is the story of my parents, and theirs. My grandparents arrived in Bronzeville during the most significant, under-reported event of the twentieth century - the Great Migration. Millions of African Americans fled the harsh realities of the Jim Crow South in great streams that followed the railways and highways North and West.

The talent, and humanity, unleashed by this great migration of souls was the final act of an emancipation, approved by law, but largely denied in fact. These Americans were émigrés in their native land. The new home they made altered the course of a nation.

Without Bronzeville, untold lives that significantly shaped our nation may well have come and gone, unknown, unaccomplished and unfulfilled. My father regaled us with stories about the ever changing cast of characters he knew growing up in his grandmother’s rooming house – the slick and wicked, the brilliant and noble. Many of them were recent transplants from the South, all sought a better life. These stories form the foundation upon which Dateline: Bronzeville developed.

I’m proud to stand on the shoulders of my parents and others as we tell these stories. It is my hope that Runny Walker and the characters you’ll come to know in Dateline: Bronzeville and the Runny Walker Mystery Series will do justice to this American legacy. “
— Donald Brooks Jones

Illustrator Statement

The images that accompany the Dateline: Bronzeville narrative are the latest expression of the trajectory of my work that spans the last 15 years. They derive from memory, real and imagined, of formative experiences on the South Side in the 1950s and ‘60s, insights gleaned from parents, grand- and great-grandparents, and extensive research. Each image is a meditation on, and celebration of, the lore and legends of the long-vanished world that was Bronzeville. 

Each image is one view of a three-dimensional modeled scene, which is also an element in the Dateline: Bronzeville video game, which is in development
— Philip Mallory Jones