There are few Chicago historical figures whose life and work speak to the current moment more than Ida B. Wells, the 19th century investigative journalist, civil rights leader, and passionate suffragist. WTTW brings you a new CHICAGO STORIES special that tells her story as never before. Freed from slavery just six months after she was born, Ida B. Wells once described her childhood with her parents and siblings in Holly Springs, Mississippi as “happy.” But a tragedy would alter the course of Wells’ youth. As a young woman and teacher, she refused to give up her seat on a train car that she was told was reserved white women. That incident launched the young Wells into her first public fight for justice. Through writing, Ida B. Wells found her “real” self. As she put pen to paper, her words became an important tool to analyze, debate, and persuade readers on the issues of the day, particularly when it came to race and gender. But after the lynching of her close friend in Memphis, Wells found a new kind of power in her pen.