Soc. Studies Segregation

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by bgant
Last updated 7 years ago

Social Studies

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Soc. Studies Segregation

"I remember that day just like it was yesterday, still after all these years," Gary said. When Gary was six years old, his family lived in a small apartment building that had only two bedrooms. Gary enjoyed spending most of his free time outside playing games with his brother and occasionally his little sister. One day, an African American family moved near the apartment building and Gary started seeing a young boy about his age hanging outside a few blocks from the apartment complex. "I don't remeber seeing other colored families, theirs was the only one." Finally, after a few days of watching the boy, Gary asked him if he wanted to play. Days went by and the boys began playing more and more often...

Somehow, word that Gary was playing with a "colored boy" caught wind and within just a few days the landlord showed up banging on Gary's parents apartment door. "The landlord told my daddy he was going to evict us if I didn't mind my business and leave that colored boy alone. I had never been in so much trouble in my whole life, or seen my parents so mad." "My daddy was already a very strict man, but from that point on my outside time stopped and the only people I was allowed to spend any time with were my mama and daddy, sister and brother, and of course, the church people."

"That incident with that little colored boy really was the only time I saw segregation." Four years later, when Gary was 1o years old his family moved from Nebraska to Walla Walla, Washington. He said, not only did he not see or hear of segregation in Walla Walla, but he never even saw a black family living there. "Like I said, my daddy was strict and it got worse after the move. We didn't listen to the radio, or play with other kids much. We were pretty much told to keep to ourselves, and go to church. In fact, my daddy pulled me out of school when I was only 15 to help with work."

"I feel like I missed a lot of History because of how I was raised, but I'm catching up."

"Although many adults I knew growing up won't agree, I'm happy I live in a country where any hard working, honest, legal family can live freely and happily no matter what color they are."

Gary's Story

"Once and only once, did I really see segregation. It was when I was living in Nebraska."


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