Thursday, March 04, 2010

Walking Down Memory Lane in Hawthorne

1 comment:

Meyer said...

This was an interesting time.
It was near the end of a transition.
From the early to mid 1900's the near Northside North Minneapolis was the only area Jews were allowed to live,and the shops of Jewish merchants lined such streets as Broadway and Glenwood.The Jews set up a system of social networking to help themselves be successful.
It was also one of the few areas that would eventually welcome the "colored". By 1940 it was common to see Jewish boys playing games in the street with their black neighbors. No one locked their doors, the milk man came, life was good
After the wars most Jews moved to the western suburbs and bought their own homes. But financing was not available to people of color to purchase the Jews' vacated affordable homes, and eventually those frustrations erupted into a riot in the middle 1960's (1967). Shops were destroyed and burned and peoples lived upended. Most of the Jewish shops move away, with a few like Friedman's remaining. Several more closed or moved away in the following years leaving many empty storefronts by 1974. The area was now largely African-America, And to support them new social service agencies started popping up. The Beth-El Synagogue on Glenwood and
Penn was converted into what today is NorthPoint. Strong racial tensions on oppression continued into the early 1980's.
Interesting, there are still a couple small pockets of Jews still in North Minneapolis - the holdouts. Although there were several synagogues in North Minneapolis there are none today. Most have been converted into churches, or torn down long ago for redevelopment. Those same socio-economic conditions continue to attract a population to all of North Minneapolis, bringing with it a unique diversity.
The Jewish Community still hold great memories of North Minneapolis, and arrange an annual "Northside" tour.
Developer Stuart Ackerberg, whose family originated from the Northside is working on some developments to revitalize North Minneapolis. It's actually a "Mitzvah" (an act of kindness) to give back to your roots.

Note- Apparently I posted these comments on someones personal site so they did not show up here. I am moving them here.