Saturday, July 25, 2009

Those damn communists

Today I asked my mom what she remembers about growing up in Charlotte, N.C. during the era of integration. She remembers being only vaguely aware of it; only that one year, in seventh or eighth grade, she showed up and suddenly there were black students at her school when they'd never been there before. They kept to themselves in the cafeteria, she said.

Then I asked, "what about the pool?"
"Oh, they closed the pool."


"Yeah, I forgot about that! They closed our pool for sure. We went at the end of my sixth grade year, and shortly after that it was closed."
My dad grew up in Greensboro, N.C., and would have been 11 when the Woolworth's lunch counter sit-in happened. I asked my mom if he'd ever talked about it. She said no, but that he'd spoken of restaurants with signs that read "No blacks, No Jews."

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