The black population in the United States is estimated to be 42 million people, representing 12% of the total population. In Indiana, the black population is 622,317 people, making up 9.3% of the state's population. While there are black residents in every county in Indiana, 62% of the state's black population is concentrated in Marion and Lake counties. In 1957, Indiana announced plans to build an interstate highway through the center of the Indiana Avenue neighborhoods in Indianapolis.
This was a result of prejudice and discrimination against black people in the state, which was codified in Article XIII of the Indiana Constitution of 1851. This article stated that no black or mulatto would be allowed to enter or settle in Indiana after the adoption of this Constitution. Fortunately, the effects of the Constitution of 1816 and subsequent rulings by the Indiana Supreme Court slowly eliminated slavery and indentured servitude in Indiana. This has allowed for a more diverse population throughout the state, with a significant concentration of black residents in Marion and Lake counties.