Before the Floodgates Opened

“I will call some agents out there and see what’s available, but I want to let you know what times we’re living in.” Transcript for Before the Floodgates Opened Open housing just opened the floodgates and made it possible for anybody and everybody to live in any parts of the city. My father was a […]

Things Like That, They Happened

“You kind of adjusted… we didn’t like it. We just, we kind of adjusted.” Transcript for Things Like That, They Happened We grew up in the neighborhood that was near Pulaski School. And at the time that I went, it was an East Pulaski and a West Pulaski. One was for the black children and […]

The Signs Were Not There

“We used to say this was ‘up South,’ and, you know, the other places were ‘down South.’” Transcript for The Signs Were Not There All of my folks—my father and my mother’s side, they were all from Florida. Gainesville, Alachua, Florida, and all down there. Every summer, my mother packed us all up, you know, […]

How We Ended Up Coming to Gary

“It was the dirtiest place in the mill. But I guess they made a decent salary. So he encouraged my father to leave Florida and move to Gary.” Transcript for In My Own Skin We grew up in the neighborhood that was near Pulaski School. My grandfather lived in the neighborhood. He didn’t live on […]

Green Light to Go Out of Town

“Did you want to take a stand… or was it just an inevitability, ‘Man, we can’t stay here any longer?’” Transcript for Green Light to Go Out of Town It didn’t take a lot of, “Let’s sit down and have a Ward Cleaver moment with Beaver, you know, and tell him what’s going on in […]

But I’m Still Here

“The doctor…made a comment, ‘Oh, the girl doesn’t have a chance.’” This is part one of a two-part story. Transcript for But I’m Still Here This goes way back to before the Emancipation Proclamation. My grandfather’s father was born in Virginia, and he knew about sea plants and what you could eat and what you […]

Making Enemies

“People are so afraid of change.” Edited by Rebecca Werner. Transcript for Making Enemies If you want to talk about making enemies, I could tell you that I did a lot of zoning work, land use work. From 1965-1990, I was the man in Porter County that you’d talk to if you wanted to get […]

Still Working on the Revolution

“You’ve given status to people who would ordinarily not have it…thus giving them power and ability to make change.” Rev. Dr. Gregory Jones Edited by Rebecca Werner Transcript for Still Working on the Revolution I moved to Valpo in 1988. I met Walt Reiner maybe a year before. I was running something called the South […]