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Thread: Segregated parts of the city

  1. #1

    Default Segregated parts of the city

    As a student of history, I'm interested in hearing opinions on these:

    How/why did

    • northeast OKC become the "black" part of town?
    • south OKC become the Hispanic part of town?
    • S. Robinson become the prostitute hangout?

  2. #2

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    In response to the first of your questions, you might find this article helpful.
    nDepth | Stories of the Ages: Endangered Black History - Oklahoma City

    There's probably a lot of information that could be also be discovered on Doug Loudenback's blogs about OKC History.

  3. #3

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    On a related note, how did NW 23rd and Classen become 'Little Saigon'? I'm assuming it dealt with a local church somehow.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Cook View Post
    On a related note, how did NW 23rd and Classen become 'Little Saigon'? I'm assuming it dealt with a local church somehow.
    From what I heard it started out a small group of activists not really affiliated with a church, there was already a small Asian population in that area (which might have been the some of the ones who sponsored the initial groups, everyone had to have an American sponsor to leave the camp in Arkansas many came through), after that there was follow on waves of friends and family. As more restaurants and services that catered to that market opened over time there would have been even more reason to locate there.

  5. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    It had a lot to do with Catholic Charities sponsoring Vietnamese refugees in the seventies and eighties.

  6. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Here is an article that discusses the Catholic Charities sponsored (and later) waves of Vietnamese migration to OKC, and here is a link to Catholic Charities still-active Refugee Resettlement program.

  7. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by thebigtamale View Post
    [*]northeast OKC become the "black" part of town?
    My understanding is that at one time Deep Deuce was the only part of Oklahoma City where black people were allowed to live. Once that legal barrier was removed they just migrated in the NE direction to escape the blight as Deep Deuce (and the rest of downtown) died a slow death.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Not sure where it fits in the history but when I moved to the area in the late sixties, Wildewood was a well established lovely integrated neighborhood south of the interstate by the Western Heritage Center. It was "the" place for middle class and upper middle class black families at the time. I went to Millwood and had friends who lived there so spent a lot of time exploring. Very pretty at the time and, to me, seemed really upscale. I haven't been by in a number of years so don't if it has maintained. As a kid, I assumed you had to be "rich" to live there.

  9. #9

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    29th is pretty close to the South Canadian drainage ditch, maybe it reminded them of the Rio Grande

  10. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Uhhh...

  11. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    That comment sucked so bad the sides of my computer caved in.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by Just the facts View Post
    My understanding is that at one time Deep Deuce was the only part of Oklahoma City where black people were allowed to live. Once that legal barrier was removed they just migrated in the NE direction to escape the blight as Deep Deuce (and the rest of downtown) died a slow death.
    Once the legal barriers were lifted, redlining kept them on the NE side. It may have been legal to live outside of Deep Deuce, but no one would rent/sell to you.

  13. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by okcustu View Post
    Once the legal barriers were lifted, redlining kept them on the NE side. It may have been legal to live outside of Deep Deuce, but no one would rent/sell to you.
    That to.

  14. #14

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Pretty sure that the Hispanic community gravitated to Capitol Hill because it was very affordable and still close to the center of town.

    Plus, the little business district on Commerce was pretty vacant and allowed people in that community to set up shop and others soon followed.

    This is all pretty recent... I'd say it didn't start in earnest until the 80's or 90's.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by Garin View Post
    29th is pretty close to the South Canadian drainage ditch, maybe it reminded them of the Rio Grande
    Pete,

    I have to ask why you keep letting this poster get away with comments like this. It's disgusting.

  16. #16

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by BrettM2 View Post
    Pete,

    I have to ask why you keep letting this poster get away with comments like this. It's disgusting.
    I think he is banned now.

  17. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by Plutonic Panda View Post
    I think he is banned now.
    Sure looks like it. FINALLY. This was about 6 months overdue.

    Back on topic, I find it pretty fascinating to see the cultures carve out different parts of the city - like 23rd street and such. Just something I've always really enjoyed. My home town had a huge Polish village that had the best bakeries. These neighborhoods help to give those of us who don't travel overseas a chance to get close to authentic food and such as possible.

  18. Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    I really wish someone with some dollars would build up Capitol Hill. That area just screams for restaurants, housings, artist, an active street-life, and a mercado.

  19. #19

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    JTF,
    They have made a lot of progress. I Just hope it continues.
    C. T.
    Quote Originally Posted by Just the facts View Post
    I really wish someone with some dollars would build up Capitol Hill. That area just screams for restaurants, housings, artist, an active street-life, and a mercado.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by Pete View Post
    Pretty sure that the Hispanic community gravitated to Capitol Hill because it was very affordable and still close to the center of town.

    Plus, the little business district on Commerce was pretty vacant and allowed people in that community to set up shop and others soon followed.

    This is all pretty recent... I'd say it didn't start in earnest until the 80's or 90's.
    Don't overlook the influence of Little Flower church, either. While it's on the north side of the river, it's not very far north -- and for years before the huge influx began, it was the center of Hispanic culture in the whole metro area.

    I'm not sure how much damage to that area was done by the I40 relocation, but I'm certain that when the influx began, Little Flower was at the very heart of it in more ways than one.

  21. #21

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Jim, do you know why Little Flower became a focal point for the Hispanic community?

  22. #22

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Speaking of Little Flower do they still have the carnival in the summer? I remember back in the day Danny Williams dealing blackjack after having one {or more} drinks.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    Quote Originally Posted by Pete View Post
    Jim, do you know why Little Flower became a focal point for the Hispanic community?
    I don't have any definite knowledge of why, but the belief that I've absorbed over the years is that it was originally created as a mission to the small Hispanic community that existed here long before WW2, and has always aimed itself specifically at that culture as a target -- with outstanding success. It's been years since I visited the site, but back then it had the exact look and feel of California's old Franciscan missions.

    In those years before WW2 and afterward into this century, the residential area from the river north to Reno and Robinson west to Walker was almost ghetto-like. In the 60s, we had a longtime friend of Jo's mother do our housecleaning once a week; Letha was single, black, and lived in the middle of that area. I always drove her home when she finished the day's work, so got fair first-hand knowledge of the condition of that extended neighborhood. It was poverty-stricken but not crime-ridden, and that plus the proximity of Little Flower may have influenced the early days of the great influx.

    Residential areas immediately south of the river in that same Robinson-to-Walker area were also rather depressed, but just a shade better off than those to the north, which may have influenced the migration to the south.

    This is all speculation, though. When I lived southside in the late 50s, the migration hadn't begun -- and The Hill (SW25, Broadway to Western) was still a thriving mixed community.

  24. #24

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    My kids' great grandparents lived in Capital Hill and you could really tell that the community was a big deal to them and shaped their lives.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Segregated parts of the city

    I love threads like this to learn about the city since I've only been here 5 years

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