The “chitlin’ circuit” is the collective name given to the string of performance venues throughout the eastern, southern, and upper mid-west areas of the United States that were safe and acceptable for African American musicians, comedians, and other entertainers to perform in during the age of racial segregation in the United States (from at least the early 19th century through the 1960′s) as well as the venues that contemporary African American soul and blues performers, especially in the South, continue to appear at regularly. The name derives from the soul food item chitterlings (stewed pig intestines) and is also a play on the term “Borscht Belt” which referred to a group of venues (primarily in New York’s Catskill Mountains) popular with Jewish performers during the 1940′s, 50′s and 60′s.