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Thread: Disturbing historic planning documents

  1. #1
    Cyburbian tsc's avatar
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    Disturbing Historic Planning Documents

    As we were cleaning out some files we found a planning report from the early 1930s about the decay of some areas of our County. It was a long document with some great maps... but upon closer inspection... much of the report was focused on how certain races were the cause of urban decay. The harsh racial slang that captioned the photos was very disturbing.... but the historic photos, however, were a great find.

    The document was not prepared by the County, but by a "planning consultant"

    We decided to maintain the document in its entirety in our library..... as they say.. don't forget our history or it may repeat itself.
    "Yeehaw!" is not a foreign policy

    Renovating the '62 Metzendorf
    http://metzendorf.blogspot.com/

  2. #2
    Cyburbian Duke Of Dystopia's avatar
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    That kind of snapshot is priceless. For good or ill I am glad you kept it. Recorded/printed material like that help to point out that we have gotten some distance down the road to a better place and time if not the whole way.
    I can't deliver UTOPIA, but I can create a HELL for you to LIVE in :)DoD:(

  3. #3
    Cyburbian nerudite's avatar
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    Some of the original subdivisions in midtown (also in the 1930s) in Vancouver, WA still have subdivision conditions (on title) prohibiting african americans from owning the homes. Planners discovered it about 5 or 6 years ago, but haven't gone through the process of removing the conditions for the fear of the hoopla that would ensue with the press.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian tsc's avatar
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    I worked in an area of upstate ny and an old subdivision stated in the deed that the property was not to be sold to Jews.
    "Yeehaw!" is not a foreign policy

    Renovating the '62 Metzendorf
    http://metzendorf.blogspot.com/

  5. #5
    I was doing research on some old roads in Northern San Diego County and came across a road that was named Nword Nate Rd." this name lasted up until 1979. I was shocked to see that this name had lasted so long. I still wonder if it was purposeful, leaving the "N" part? They changed it to Nate Harrison Grade Rd., Nate had a great reputation for helping people get their cars up Palomar Mt.

    Edit: Didn't realize I couldn't print the N word.

  6. #6
    Cyburbian tsc's avatar
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    Wow.. that is a bad one..
    "Yeehaw!" is not a foreign policy

    Renovating the '62 Metzendorf
    http://metzendorf.blogspot.com/

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Originally posted by tsc
    Wow.. that is a bad one..
    But not uncommon. There is a canyon where I enjoy hiking called N. Bill Canyon. Up through the 70's, these names were accepted on USGS maps. In the 80's and 90's as many of the older maps were updated, the names were changed. There is a similar trend to remove the word "squaw" from place names now.

  8. #8
    Cyburbian ludes98's avatar
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    Squaw..renamed

    Confirmation on squaw renaming. Having the largest percentage of reservation land in the US probably contributed, but this year Arizona renamed a "mountain" (not what most folks consider a mountain, but hey this is AZ) from Squaw Peak to Peistewa. Named for Lori Peistewa, the first Native American killed as a combat soldier in the US. It was hotly debated here, due to the 5 year waiting period for renaming it after a dead person was waived. Most businesses with the name are staying with squaw so far.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian SlaveToTheGrind's avatar
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    Originally posted by Cardinal
    But not uncommon. There is a canyon where I enjoy hiking called N. Bill Canyon. Up through the 70's, these names were accepted on USGS maps. In the 80's and 90's as many of the older maps were updated, the names were changed. There is a similar trend to remove the word "squaw" from place names now.
    Negro Bill Canyon in Grand County, Utah.

    From David Day's Utah's Favortie Hiking Trails

    Negro Bill Canyon was named after William Granstaff, a black prospector and rancher who grazed his cattle here during the late 1800s. It is a lovely canyon, cut into the Navajo Sandstone by a small, perennial stream that begins about six miles from the southern shore of the Colorado River. The trail winds along the stream through an oasis of cottonwood and willow trees, cut off from the desert above by towering sandstone cliffs. Like all good hikes, this one also has a reward at the end. Morning Glory Natural Bridge spans the head of one of Negro Billís side canyons at the end of the trail. According to Bureau of Land Management statistics, Morning Glory is the sixth largest natural bridge in the United States. Itís span is 243 feet.

  10. #10
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    Yes, the name was cleaned up a little bit. I suspect it will change again before long.

  11. #11
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    The ******heads

    Way down south here in Australia, in the Alpine High Country we have a mountain ridge called The ******heads named because the mountain's rocky formation resembles an aboriginal head, especially when viewed from the West Kiewa River.

    About a year ago there was a small ground swell of nameschangers who wanted the ******heads renamed. We burnt them do-gooders on the stake! Tasted good, yum!

    http://www.bogonghorse.com.au/news/k7m4kvra.htm

  12. #12
    DA Monkey's avatar
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    E.S "N....." Brown football Stadium

    Also in the land of Oz

    The E.S. "N....r" Brown Stadium

    We had a local ruckus in relation to a football stadium named after a local football legend. The stadium had been named in the 1960's after he passed away.

    Mr Brown was known as "Ni....." Brown because he was particularly fair skinned. He was so well known by this name, it is even marked on his gravestone.

    A local aboriginie who had lived in the area for years suddenly took offence to the name in the mid to late nineties. He lost all court cases (publically funded of course) and then decided to go to the UN courts in Geneva where it is at now.

    Its a funny issue because the name is racially offensive there is no doubt, but it is reflective of a cultural icon who was esteemed by many in the community regardless of personal heritage and the stadium was named out of respect to Mr Brown and his family. The majority of local aboriginie groups supported the Councils decision not to change the name - hence all the lost court cases.

    Is this an issue of the little guy being rolled by the oppressive weight of democracy or is it simply one pests attempt to draw attention to himself.

    I might also add that this bloke has made numerous complaints in regards to other language specific issues such as "coon" cheese for instance (a Queensland brand icon and a family name) and very tasty as well... Mmmm vegemite and cheese sangas.

    Got to go - hungry now.

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    I remember finding a plan of Abilene, Texas from the 1930's that included excellent parks design, drainage corridor preservation and parkway design (none of which came to pass). But it also clearly marked and planned for "negro" and "white" schools, parks and other facilities. While the plan was not blatently include displays of hatred, I found it interesting that the "negro" neighborhoods were in flood proned areas, obviously due to property values that sometimes smells like environmental racism.

    I personally don't see the purpose of having racial mix information in land use plans. If it is included, it should only be in reference to cultural diversity and should be in recreation or cultural elements of a plan.

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Duke Of Dystopia's avatar
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    Originally posted by Budgie
    ...I personally don't see the purpose of having racial mix information in land use plans. If it is included, it should only be in reference to cultural diversity and should be in recreation or cultural elements of a plan.
    I don't know how you can even do that these days, or why you would want to. For instance, are you going to put the basketball courts near african-american neighborhoods cause they will get utilized the most? Or the case of putting ball diamonds in latino or white nieghborhoods because of likely utilization. It came up this season that baseball has a shrinking pool of black athletes, primarily because of lack of access. Unfortunatly, if you see more than three black kids together away from a b-ball court people get nervous.

    Other issues get to water front utilization as you mostly need to be middle class to have a boat to get on the waterways. How do you manage diversity with waterway access?

    I don't know the best way to handle it, but I do know that even recreational space has political/racial implications
    I can't deliver UTOPIA, but I can create a HELL for you to LIVE in :)DoD:(

  15. #15
    Cyburbian Budgie's avatar
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    Originally posted by Duke Of Dystopia
    I don't know how you can even do that these days, or why you would want to. For instance, are you going to put the basketball courts near african-american neighborhoods cause they will get utilized the most? Or the case of putting ball diamonds in latino or white nieghborhoods because of likely utilization. It came up this season that baseball has a shrinking pool of black athletes, primarily because of lack of access. Unfortunatly, if you see more than three black kids together away from a b-ball court people get nervous.

    Other issues get to water front utilization as you mostly need to be middle class to have a boat to get on the waterways. How do you manage diversity with waterway access?

    I don't know the best way to handle it, but I do know that even recreational space has political/racial implications
    I did not mean recreation in terms of active or passive recreation facilities. I meant it in terms of cultural diversity, such as the offering of different craft and dance classes for instance. What do the people want?

  16. #16
    Haven't found any plan documents, but this recent article in the Milwaukee Journal had an article about basketball Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson buying a house in the community where I work and the neighborhood held a meeting and passed around a petition of complaint, arguing that Oscar moving here would adversely affect the property values. Quite disturbing and I am sure that some of those people still live here.

    Link:

    http://www.jsonline.com/sports/buck/oct03/180610.asp
    "I'm a white male, age 18 to 49. Everyone listens to me, no matter how dumb my suggestions are."

    - Homer Simpson

  17. #17
    Cyburbian Rumpy Tunanator's avatar
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    Originally posted by nerudite
    Some of the original subdivisions in midtown (also in the 1930s) in Vancouver, WA still have subdivision conditions (on title) prohibiting african americans from owning the homes.
    What? Don't you mean African-Canadians? If you get of the boat from one country into another than I think you could say that. But if your born in your country and stay there aren't you called (insert your country here). I've got multiple ethnic groups in my blood, but I call myself American, not Finnish-Wop American (sorry fellow Finnish-Wop Americans) because I was born here. If your born in this country you are a native of the country. Lets drop the damn political correctness already, thats whats really seperating this country.
    A guy once told me, "Do not have any attachments, do not have anything in your life you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you spot the heat around the corner."


    Neil McCauley (Robert DeNiro): Heat 1995

  18. #18
    maudit anglais
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    Originally posted by Rumpy Tuna
    What? Don't you mean African-Canadians? If you get of the boat from one country into another than I think you could say that. But if your born in your country and stay there aren't you called (insert your country here). I've got multiple ethnic groups in my blood, but I call myself American, not Finnish-Wop American (sorry fellow Finnish-Wop Americans) because I was born here. If your born in this country you are a native of the country. Lets drop the damn political correctness already, thats whats really seperating this country.
    Last time I checked, Vancouver WA was in the U.S. I've never come across any old planning ordinances that had restrictions like that in them, but there was a somewhat famous Ontario Muncipal Board hearing back in the 1930s or 40s that dealt with the question of restricting zoning by race when a private Jewish school tried to set up shop and was refused by a municipality.

  19. #19
    Cyburbian Rumpy Tunanator's avatar
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    Originally posted by Tranplanner
    Last time I checked, Vancouver WA was in the U.S. I've never come across any old planning ordinances that had restrictions like that in them, but there was a somewhat famous Ontario Muncipal Board hearing back in the 1930s or 40s that dealt with the question of restricting zoning by race when a private Jewish school tried to set up shop and was refused by a municipality.
    Once again I shot myself in the foot on location, didn't see the WA (sorry canadians and nerudite), but my point still stands.
    A guy once told me, "Do not have any attachments, do not have anything in your life you are not willing to walk out on in 30 seconds flat if you spot the heat around the corner."


    Neil McCauley (Robert DeNiro): Heat 1995

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