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1967 Detroit Riots - 1Dogman125 02-03-09  3:58 pm
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Pamequus
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 8:33 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I was 18, just graduated from high school and working at Macabee Life Insurance in Southfield. In the middle of the day I was paged to the front office and saw my Dad standing there. He had come to take me home. I remember worrying about where the rioters were in relationship to our home (Six Mile/Lahser/Evergreen area) and Dad reassuring me they were far away. However, the next day I recall my Dad coming home and telling my Mom he was going to stay home for the duration. That frightened me, my Dad worked 12-14 hours a day and for him to take off work was a major event. Like Barnes, I don't recall any looter damage as far out as we were but I do recall soldiers on the streets, mainly Grand River and stopping traffic at some point along GR. Weren't allowing anyone in or out.

By January my folks had sold their house and moved to South Lyon. Even though I was moving on in my life I hated leaving that fabulous neighborhood. I can't imagine growing up any where else.
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Janesback
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 8:47 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Pamequs, you mentioned that your family sold after the riots? I have read other posts about people moving after the riots.

Did this cause a panic for homeowners to sell as well as a drop in the price of houses? I guess with people moving out further that could make for houses being abandonded and neighborhoods going down.
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Rjk
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 9:06 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I was just looking at a website that listed the number of people leaving Detroit. The numbers are from C. Young's book "Hard Stuff."

1966: 22,000
1967: 67,000 (With less than half the year remaining after the riot)
1968: 80,000
1969: 46,000

(Message edited by rjk on October 27, 2006)
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Detroit_stylin
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 9:12 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

damn thats over 200K in only four years...
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Janesback
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 9:15 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

detroitstylin, thanks, you just cleared that up. In the year 1968, it increased 4 X, so I guess the riot did affect people

I guess home prices decreased substantially, since there was more supply than demand.......Thanks, Jane.....
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Mikem
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 1:08 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

http://www.detnews.com/specialreports/2001/elmhurst/index.htm

Yes Lowell, I think I condensed that timeline from "The Detroit Riot of 1967" by Hubert Locke.

Here are a few more photos from the period...


Eastern HS, E Grand Blvd at Mack. I think this was a staging ground for the National Guard while Central HS was used by the US Army:




Detroit police, location unknown




I too have never seen any pictures of "tanks" on the streets as everyone claims, and I always thought they were mistaking these armored personel carriers for tanks, but if Frank remembers them, I'll take his word for it.

This is in the vicinity of the Lodge Freeway and W Grand Blvd. Scribbled on its side is "Mission Impossible":




Linwood looking south from Joy Rd:




The bath house at Belle Isle being used as a holding cell:




Looters in the 2nd precinct:




Grand River @ 14th:




location unknown:




Mayor Cavanagh on 12th Street:




The DFD's east side command post on the playground at E Warren and Alter. From here state troopers or guardsmen would be paired up with dispatched fire equipment. A similar post was established at W Warren and Lawton:




A map of the hardest hit areas:





I have no real memories of the riot as I was too young and living a world away in Grosse Pointe. Next door lived a GM executive who was away on business. His wife, home alone, was terrified of being raped by the black people who would soon be at her doorstep, so she came to spend the night with us. Funny to see her holding hands with a black man at one of my parent's parties just a few years later.

One of my sisters was at the Alger Theater when they stopped the movie in the middle and told everyone to go home. I remember her asking my father how long it would be until the blacks would reach Grosse Pointe - "Not for 30 years" was his reply, and that was fairly accurate.
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Mikem
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 1:43 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Robert Conot's chapter on the start of the riot in his "American Odyssey":

quote:

On the night of Saturday, July 22, 1967, the Tenth Precinct “cleanup squad” consisting of Sergeant Arthur Howison and three patrolmen was cruising along Twelfth Street. The cleanup squad was the precinct equivalent of the headquarters “vice squad”—throughout the police department there tends to be an overlapping and duplication of functions between the precinct and the more prestigious “downtown.” The vice and cleanup squads were supposed to control gambling, prostitution, illegal liquor operations, and after-hours, unlicensed “blind pigs.” Officers on the vice detail were expected to close down a reasonable number of blind pigs every month. They knew that if they didn’t, they would be returned to a regular beat. Violators who were arrested were fined one hundred dollars, and the next week would be back in business. Some had been arrested as many as thirty or forty times in the revolving-door process.

The day had been warm, humid, and smoggy, and Twelfth Street—”The Strip”—was teeming with people. Miniskirted prostitutes, dope pushers, the syndicate man who provided juice (a loan for criminal activity), the armed robber who had just knocked off a cab driver—all blended into the swirl. At the corner of Twelfth Street and Clairmount was a nondescript building that housed the Economy Printing Company on the first floor, and above it the United Civic League for Community Action. The police had known the United Civic League for Community Action to be the front for a blind pig ever since it had been chartered a year and a half before. Sergeant Howison had raided it the first time in February, 1966. Repeatedly, thereafter, various members of the Tenth Precinct cleanup squad had attempted to gain entrance. The rival vice squad, however, had staged the next successful raid, on June 3, 1967, less than two months previously.

At 10:30 P.M. on July 22, a half hour after the squad left the precinct station to begin its night’s work, Patrolman Charles Henry knocked on the door of the blind pig, but was refused admittance as “unknown” and suspect—he didn’t have a woman with him, he was fairly young, well dressed, and in good physical condition; all of which meant that he might be a cop. For the next five hours the four plainclothes officers busied themselves checking other tips. Usually officers on vice details knocked off about 3 AM, to return to the station and write their reports. That was the procedure followed by several other officers who had successfully busted four blind pigs during the night. But before going back to the station, Patrolman Henry told Sergeant Howison he thought he might be able to gain entry now.

At 3:34 A.M. vigilance at the blind pig had wilted, and Henry was able to walk in behind three women. Ten minutes after Henry had gone inside—time enough for him to have bought a drink—Sergeant Howison radioed for the Tenth Precinct cruiser. (Another squad car also responded.) He then ordered the door of the blind pig smashed with a sledgehammer. Once inside, the police discovered the place was being used to hold a party for servicemen, two of whom had recently returned from Vietnam. Sergeant Howison had expected to find a score of people at most, but instead he discovered eighty-two! Sergeant Howison called for a paddy wagon to take them to the station.

Over an hour and four paddy wagon trips were required to remove everyone. Police Commissioner Ray Girardin was well aware that on The Strip “you can blow a whistle at three o’clock in the morning and get two thousand people on the street.” On a balmy Saturday night there was still a good deal of vehicular traffic. Cars stopped. People drifted out of all-night eating places. They looked out of their windows and came down from their apartments. About two hundred spectators gathered. Many of their comments were jocular and the mood was not “ugly.” But, inevitably, as people were herded into the paddy wagon, some were jostled by the police. A college student kept shouting: Motherfuckers! Leave my people alone!” The rumor spread that the police had manhandled a woman. There was a general air of resentment against police vice activity—an activity that was looked upon by the black community as being directed discriminatorily against Negroes. As the last police car left the scene at five o’clock, an empty bottle smashed against its rear window. A litter basket was heaved through the window of a store. Rocks were thrown. In a few minutes the police returned to the area. A lieutenant was struck by a brick.

Within fifteen minutes all of the officials in the department were notified. At twenty minutes past five the telephone rang at Girardin’s home, and he was told. By six thirty burglar alarms set off by broken windows were awakening residents of a half dozen blocks on Twelfth Street, and police officials were gathering at the musty police headquarters on Beaubien Street. Ten minutes later the Tactical Mobile Unit, the first formed in the country for just such an emergency, mobilized some of its eighty men. The night shift was held over, and the day shift for all of the West Side precincts was called to duty an hour and a half early. (They were due at 8 A.M.) It was the two hundred sixty-sixth anniversary of the day on which Cadillac had first stepped ashore on de trois; but by nightfall, July 23 would be better established as The Day of the Blind Pig.


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Jams
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 2:26 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

janesbeck's questions:


quote:

Pamequs, you mentioned that your family sold after the riots? I have read other posts about people moving after the riots.

Did this cause a panic for homeowners to sell as well as a drop in the price of houses? I guess with people moving out further that could make for houses being abandonded and neighborhoods going down.




Something I remember quite vividly Post-riot was the pracice of "Block-Busting".

Unscrupulous real estate agencies would "sell" a house to a black family on an all white block and alert the neighbors to the fact a black family had moved in.

"For sale" signs quickly appeared up and down the street, to the point the Council passed a law limiting the number of signs permitted on a street.

It became a panic sale and many of the whites sold their homes to the agencies at far undermarket value rather than live on the street that was "becoming Black", because they believed they would lose their total investment.

A very ugly page in the history of this City.
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_sj_
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 3:37 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Some more pictures.

http://www.buyoutfootage.com/p ages/titles/pd_na_047.html
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Detroit_stylin
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 3:44 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Yeah I defineatley see a 101 patch on the shoulder on one of those paratroopers...
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Bob_cosgrove
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 4:59 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

On the photos posted in the thread before the last with the photo page refernce, under the one titled "Looters in the 2nd Precinct" did you see the whites among the looters? And, I'm not talking about the store dummies standing on the street. On the first day of the Riot whites and blacks were both among the looters.

Bob Cosgrove
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Bob_cosgrove
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 5:02 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

On the photos posted by Mikem under the one titled "Looters in the 2nd Precinct" note the whites among the looters - and I'm not taling about the store dummies in the street.

On the first day of the riot whites and blacks were both among the looters.

Bob Cosgrove
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Rustic
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 7:51 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Up GR on the NW side the sporadic looting was mostly whites. In addition some of the isolated stand alone business fires were highly suspicious as being really directly riot related. There is a map similar to Mikem's that shows the entire city with dots shoing property fires and dashed regions shoing looting areas and you can see from it that up Livernois, on E JEfferson and esp out GR the looting and fires were oddly located in scattered places far from most of the real hellish violence.
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Unclefrank
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Posted on Friday, October 27, 2006 - 10:18 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

56packman

I'm glad your dad survived slamming a warm PBR. When I did that in college, I puked! :-)
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Detroit_stylin
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Posted on Sunday, October 29, 2006 - 10:04 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Mikem, That link that you posted showing the changes to Elmhurst really says alot about what really happend PRIOR to the insurrection on 1967.
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Rasputin
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 8:28 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

The world of the Black American is different from that of the white American. This difference comes not only from the segregation imposed on the Black, but from the very nature of Blackness and its evolution under segregation.

In his constant encounters with the white American's world, the Black American has had basically two responses: resistance to the white world or assimilation into it.

The attempts of the Black American to be assimilated into the mainstream have been systematically frustrated. However, whenever a few Blacks have emulated the ways and manners of white America, reflected her values (a process known as success), these individuals are projected as models that the race should imitate. Jackie Robinson, Thurgood Marshall, Ralph Bunche, and many others are pointed to by whites as Blacks who are "a credit to the race." A few are always allowed to make it so that the remaining millions will be pacified and will try a little harder to be good citizens, i.e., not giving white folks any trouble.

But this is only the view from one seat in the outhouse. At the same time there have been those Black Americans who have resisted white America and sought to convince as many as possible of what they knew. These were the field niggers during slavery, Nat Turner, the Black abolitionists, Garvey, and in our own time, Malcolm, the hustler on the corner and the high-school dropout. They have never been considered a "credit to the race" and one does not learn about them in public school. They are the ancestors of today's angry children of Malcolm X whose rallying cry is Black Power.

Those who advocate Black Power today are not isolated "extremists" as the press and the powers that be want us to believe. They are the inheritors of a proud tradition of resistance to America and what it stands for.

Blacks can see very clearly that America is a nation built upon inhumanity. The signers of the Declaration of Independence put down their quills to go home and beat their slaves. Blacks have heard the noble words, while the whip shredded the skins of their backs.

It is no longer possible to hide from public view the resistance struggle that Blacks have constantly waged inside America. The smoke from the fires of Detroit singed every white eyebrow and the message was clear: To die in the attempt to humanize America is preferable to being an American as America is now constituted. ..... [Julius Lester, Ph.D.]


Black-atcha ..... watching 1967 still permeate the minds and fears of white-breaders
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Karl
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 8:56 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Ras, pretty low of you to equate losers on street corners & HS dropouts with Malcolm as you say "and in our own time, Malcolm, the hustler on the corner and the high-school dropout." Those types are losers in every society and race, and never equated with any society's heros, but for some reason are in your mind.

America is one of the few countries in the world to recognize her mistakes and mend her ways. Odd that you don't leave since you must know better places.

As to your last paragraph, "the smoke from the fires of Detroit" sent many folks of all races fleeing to safety, and given your thought process, it appears that they made the right decision. Your thinking is locked in a bygone era, and is an impediment & albatross to Detroit, African Americans, and anyone discouraged by your words.
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Danny
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 11:59 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That's is why Detroit has become a ghetto!!! And its all started with SEGREGATION, the law of fear and hatred!!!
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Danny
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 12:08 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Rasputin,

I agree with you. DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA IS NOT COMPLETE UNTIL IT IS COMPLETE EQUALLY WITH RACE.


Now if America was found by the black man, then BLACK PRIVILEGE is law. But if America was founded by the white man, then WHITE PRIVILEGE is law. As a result America was a white man's ideal to promote the freedom of Democracy to ALL people of color. Not some. But the first experiment from the 1700s has indeed failed for the White American people failed to recognized the black race, the native American race, and yes even the Hispanic race all the up the Arabian race.

TODAY DEMOCRACY IN AMERICA IS NOT FREEDOM UNTIL I SEE FREEDOM IN THE PEOPLE OF COLOR.
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Krapug
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 12:11 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Back to the riots.

I remember as a kid the pictures of residential blocks being burned to the ground was disturbing, and it seemed to be worse than the rioting in Newark that for the most part targeted businesses. Was downtown Detroit hit by rioting, and if so what was the extant of damages?

....and yes the real damage to downtown was the slow death that the 67 riots heaped upon it.

Ken
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Janesback
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 12:19 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

But the first experiment from the 1700s has indeed failed for the White American people failed to recognized the black race, the native American race, and yes even the Hispanic race all the up the Arabian race.
------------------------------ --------------


If that is indeed the case, then why is the U.S the number one country where immigration is at an all time high?

If things are so so bad here, then why do blacks, mid easterners, Mexicans, South Americans continue to come to this country in the millions if the U.S is such a bad country?

I bet if people did live in other countries, say Korea or China , they would have a somewhat different opinion of the U.S, its democracy, the ability to vote for who we want in office, and the ability to speak their opinions where they may.

We may not be a perfect nation, but look around and be thankful for what we do have. Thanks for listening.......Jane
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Dday
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 12:25 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)


quote:

Yeah I defineatley see a 101 patch on the shoulder on one of those paratroopers...




Yep...saw it, too. I stand corrected...
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Jams
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 12:37 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Mikem


quote:

I too have never seen any pictures of "tanks" on the streets as everyone claims, and I always thought they were mistaking these armored personel carriers for tanks, but if Frank remembers them, I'll take his word for it.




I pulled out my copy of LIFE magazine dated August 4,1967 and it has a photo of a National Guard tank on patrol on a west side street.

I'd scan and post them, but my scanner and computer don't seem to want to interact.
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 12:58 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)



Amazing.
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:01 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:02 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:05 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

caption for this said: "Michigan near Trumbull"
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:25 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:32 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:34 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

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Focusonthed
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:35 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

That's disgusting. Looks like Germany after the war.
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Detroit_stylin
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:37 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

You not every lying focus...those do look like scenes of Dresden during allied bombing raids
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:48 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

18_1967guardingstoreDetroit.jpg
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:49 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 1:50 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

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Madanthonywayne
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Madanthonywayne
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 2:09 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

RFK at touring 12th st.
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 2:11 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)



12th St. - After...1970's
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Goat
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 2:23 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Looks the same today, except there are a few more buildings that are crumbling down.

Rasputin, if the black folks were so hard core in sending "whitey" the message. Why are they shaking hands with RFK? Are they sell-outs too?
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 2:24 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

....so, if there's anyone out there really, really interested in the '67 riot - I'm a local producer looking to put a non-profit documentary together and i'm looking for a partner. serious inquiries only.

contact me here:

www.myspace.com/67detroitriot
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Detroit_stylin
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 2:36 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Madanthiny, I am currently working on a project dealing with that as well...

email me @ detroitstylin2000 @ yahoo.com
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Jams
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 2:39 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks Madanthonywayne,
Wish you luck on the project, good timing since next year is the 40th anniversary, so there should be more interest.

Those aerials should help explain to some why the scars haven't healed.
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Bob_cosgrove
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 3:31 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The question of whether or not there were tanks at the 1967 Riot has come up. Some reports may have mistaken the low multi-wheeled track M-110 Amrored Personnel Carrier for a tank.

But, there certainly were National Guard tanks on the West side. There was one incident when a National Guard tanker used his turret-mounted .50 caliber machinegun on the second floor of a duplex when someone lighted a cigarette there and ended up killing a young girl. Fire discipline as well as leadership among the National Guard troops was lacking. Many if not the vast majority had never seen combat although the Viet Nam War was going full swing. The National Guard was one of several ways you could avoid the draft.

While there could have been tanks on the East side, they undoubtedly would have been from U.S. Army Reserve units. The Regular Army 82nd and 101st Airborne Divisions bought in at that time weren't equipped with regular tanks, since they lacked an air-lift capability to transport a full-size battle tank.

Note in one of the photos there is a wheeled armoned car. I served in the 6th Armored Cavalry Regiment on active duty - the basic mission of Cavalry is reconaisance - and we never had an armored car which was basically a reconaissance vehicle. All this may indicate is that the National Guard may have been equipped with obsolete vehicles. The tanks shown in the photos were M-48's, which had already been replaced on active duty with the M-60.

Bob Cosgrove
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Madanthonywayne
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Posted on Tuesday, October 31, 2006 - 8:51 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

...per Bob's note:

Tanya Blanding a 4-year-old African-American female died 7/26/67 at 12:30am. Tanya was the youngest and most innocent victim of the riot. Tanya died as a result of a gunfire from a National Guard tank stationed in front of her house at 1756 W. Euclid. Guardsmen claim that they were responding to sniper fire from the second floor, where Tanya lived with her family. They claim to have seen a flash in the window and therefore opened fire on the apartment complex. That flash was actually the flick of match in the dark room, as one of Tanya’s male relatives attempted to light a cigarette. Sergeant Mortimer Leblanc of Roseville, reportedly fired the first shot at the apartment complex. The result was that a 50-caliber bullet tore through Tanya’s chest. Nobody was held criminally responsible for this child’s death.
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Erikto
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Post Number: 471
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Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 8:39 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

In case people researching the '67 riot don't already know, I recommend watching a Canadian documentary about Windsor's CKLW. There are some interesting before/ after observations if memory serves.
A couple of books I rarely see mentioned in these threads- Nightmare In Detroit describes each fatality including a shorter version of the events at the Algiers Motel. I think that motel is pictured somewhere in this thread, maybe from a Free Press front page describing the 'mysterious' deaths?

Violence In The Model City is thoroughly researched, with maps and graphs to boot. It is also the only place where I have read that all was not well economically in the 12th Street neighbourhood; unemployment was apparently high among locals that summer, and the area is describes as having been over crowded. Of course I wasn't even born, so when I cite this book as contradicting the accounts of people who were 'there', I am not attempting to engage anyone in a disagreement, I just thought it would be worth mentioning this extensive book.
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Karl
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Post Number: 4782
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Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 9:00 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

In reading Nightmare in Detroit, it mentions the occupation of each fatality. Looters who died were not only employed, but some had excellent jobs. If the neighborhood was overcrowded, why didn't those with jobs move somewhere less congested? Further, it seems that angry folks driven to rebel would not want to burn their neighbors out of their homes.

If jobs were plentiful outside the neighborhood, the problem might have been within - and if this thread is headed to HOF status, I hope someone can offer something substantial as to what was happening in the homes of the rioters that caused this tragedy - not what the government/nanny state could have done to prevent it.
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Detroit_stylin
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Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 9:02 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Actually news reports from the day (researching the news and freep archives at the Main Library), also refutes alot of what is common knowledge.
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Karl
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Post Number: 4785
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Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 9:51 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Stylin, are you saying the news reports from the day are wrong, or common knowlege since those days is wrong? Where have you found the truth?
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3rdworldcity
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Username: 3rdworldcity

Post Number: 314
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 1:24 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

My family was vacationing in NYC the week before the riots. While in NYC we were inundated with news stories about the Newark riot which took place that week. We returned to Detroit on Sunday by plane. We lazily flew across the City while approaching our landing pattern. A couple of my little kids were standing at the window while I attempted to point out landmarks. (No one seemed to care they were standing and not wearing seat belts; a different atmosphere then.) We were flying at about 2000 feet I think. My kids started asking why there was so much smoke. It was everywhere. Some raging fires were unattended by firefighters. Not once did the Captain advise us that there was a full blown riot going on in the city. But boy, what a view.

We heard on the radio going home from the airport (to Green Acres) that there was "civil unrest." Very little additional info. As we drove east on 8 mile from Southfield we saw about 30 State Police cars lined up at a filling station getting gassed up.

As we passed Livernois we saw a large hardware store on the east side of Livernois about 3 blocks south of 8 mile burning furiously, with not a fireman in sight.

My office at the time was in the area of Fenkell and Livernois. That area had many fires. I stood around and watched several of them. What is interesting is that there did not appear to be a racial aspect to the whole thing. Blacks and whites stood around checking out the fires, almost enjoying the party atmosphere. There was no racial animosity that I could see, just a big party.

The next week it was L.A.'s turn; the Watts riots took place there.
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Detroit313
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Post Number: 226
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 2:25 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Watts was in 65'.

Interesting story.

I wasn't born but my mother has a very interesting story.

She was a senior at South Eastern High at the and my grandparents were throwing a party at there house. The Nat'l Guard was on every street corner and informed then that they had to stay in there house after curfew.

My aunt invited all the Nat'l Guards to the party on one condition.........that they loot the liquor store and replenish the party. So the did and the party kept going.313
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Pamequus
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Post Number: 85
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Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 2:37 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jane, sorry it took me a while to respond to your question, I've been out of town.

I don't know if the riots actually caused my folks to flee Detroit, though I suspect it was a part of it. My folks had been considering moving for several months, though I imagine the riots caused them to move more quickly. Though they never discussed it with me I know it wasn't an easy decision since they both had grown up in that neighborhood and had strong ties there.

What I think was more of an reason for the white flight was the loss of property value once black people moved into the neighborhood. While we can say that is wrong it was a reality and these were middle income families, their homes probably their largest investment and asset, with much to lose.

Detroit had been set up for this, many years earlier, when the laws defining black neighborhoods and white neighborhoods were written. Though they had been repealed the mind set was there and would take more than a decade or two to change.
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3rdworldcity
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Username: 3rdworldcity

Post Number: 315
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Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 3:13 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Detroit313: Sorry about the Watts reference if the date is wrong. If it was not the "Watts" riot it was another major civil unrest occurance in L.A. that lasted almost a week just after order was restored in Detroit.
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Madanthonywayne
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Username: Madanthonywayne

Post Number: 35
Registered: 03-2006
Posted on Wednesday, November 01, 2006 - 3:22 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

anyone have personal photos/8mm movies from the riot?
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Kathinozarks
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Username: Kathinozarks

Post Number: 6
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Saturday, November 25, 2006 - 11:13 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

it's been a few weeks since that last post, but I'll put my two cents in anyway.
It happened.
It's terrible.
It was 40 years ago.
An entire generation has been born and are adults now.
Why hasn't Detroit risen above it all and moved above and beyond? Any ideas?

(Message approved by admin)
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Detroit_stylin
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Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 3322
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Posted on Monday, November 27, 2006 - 9:52 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Becuase residual effects from the moment still linger, along racial, political, and economic lines. Until we as a REGION come together for the sake of SE Michigan then we will be perpetually stuck in this condition...

(Message approved by admin)
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Janesback
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Username: Janesback

Post Number: 162
Registered: 08-2006
Posted on Thursday, November 30, 2006 - 12:02 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Why is it that a few messages on this forum, like the one posted above this one, by DetroitStylin says (Message approved by admin) and the majority do not?

Is this a type of editing or proof reading? Thanks, Jane.........

(Message approved by admin)
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Detroit_stylin
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Username: Detroit_stylin

Post Number: 3351
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Posted on Saturday, December 02, 2006 - 4:51 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Nope, just come about becuase this thread has been moved to the HOF section. that's all...

(Message approved by admin)
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Michmeister
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Username: Michmeister

Post Number: 38
Registered: 10-2006
Posted on Thursday, December 21, 2006 - 4:22 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I was only four and a half at the time, but I remember Nat`l Guardsmen rolling down our street on open 2 1/2 tonners and that my mom had to calm me down for being scared stiff at the sight as we had similar pictures coming back from Viet Nam.
My mom was a nurse all her working life and at the height of the unrest had to be taken to work by police where, at one crowd for which the driver had to slow down, a little black kid tore open the door and spit on her lap. This really crushed her.Not because it happened to her but because such circumstances could arise to drive someone to do something like that, being mad at society rather than the kid. She also talked about seeing tanks but probably wouldn`t have been able to tell a tank from an APC. Our family moved shortly thereafter, from Annott to the northwest side where I lived until I left for the Army in 1983, and mom stayed in the house another ten years or so until retirement in Dearborn, God rest her soul.
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Chuckles
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Username: Chuckles

Post Number: 23
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Sunday, February 04, 2007 - 4:26 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I lived the riots, I was a welder in the West Vernor/Junction area, I worked with guys who were looters at night and just watchers during the day, they just said "Why not"...

My next door neighbor was a Fireman stationed at Warren and Lawton, he had many very scarry and some disgusting stories.
A lot of buildings just burned because it wasn't worth being shot to put the fire out.

I lived at Tireman and Evergreen at the time and had a need to take my young wife to the hospital at 6 and Outer Drive but could not because of snipers at the overpass's along the way...

Everything went back to normal after a short while...

Normal...now there is another discussion.....

chuckles, Detroit to the bone.............
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Royce
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Username: Royce

Post Number: 2055
Registered: 07-2004
Posted on Sunday, February 11, 2007 - 7:44 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Chuckles, would that fireman be willing to share a couple of his stories with a local publisher putting together an anthology on the riots? She wants to tell as many stories as possible.
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Chuckles
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Username: Chuckles

Post Number: 33
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Monday, February 12, 2007 - 8:33 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Sorry, that person is long gone, long time ago.

regards
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Doug_warren
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Username: Doug_warren

Post Number: 2
Registered: 05-2007
Posted on Tuesday, May 29, 2007 - 6:58 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

WILS AM in Lansing, MI is putting together a documentary about the 1967 riot to be premiered this July. To date, we have interviewed a number of Detroit residents, as well a members of the Michigan National Guard. We are currently looking for Detroit Police Department and Fire Department veterans to interview and gather their recollections of the events.

If anyone would like to take part or help us out with any leads, drop us an e-mail at the address below.

eblingandyou@tds.net

Thanks,

Doug Warren
Executive Producer - Ebling and You
WILS AM 3120
Lansing, MI
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Jaja
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Username: Jaja

Post Number: 9
Registered: 12-2007
Posted on Friday, December 14, 2007 - 12:24 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I was in the NAVY, doing KP duty.. 12-14 hours a day, 6 days a week.... As soon as I could, I went to the barracks payphone to call my mother (a widow)...no answer... I called several times in the next few days... no answer... I was getting to the point I was going to ask for emergency leave... then came a letter from her.. My uncle had taken her to his house in Warren for the time being....RELIEF!
remember, this was in the era before cell phones,
communication was by land line phone (pay phone in my case) or US mail.. thank God for today's
technology...
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Eriedearie
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Username: Eriedearie

Post Number: 384
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Friday, December 14, 2007 - 7:54 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've just finished reading this thread after several days and this has brought back some memories that I had not thought about in a long, long time.

When I first heard there was rioting going on down on 12th Street, a friend and I were at Holiday Beach out past Windsor, not far from Boblo Island. We were dating two fellas from Windsor and had gone over to Windsor to meet them for a picnic that day. We were sunning ourselves on the beach when someone had their transistor radio turned up and the news came across about there being a race riot in Detroit. We couldn't believe it. The news said things were really bad and that the officials were thinking about closing the Ambassador Bridge and the Detroit Windsor Tunnel. We packed up our stuff and all headed back to Windsor where the guys lived. Their mothers told us if the border closed we could stay with them. But we got in my car and the guys followed us to the tunnel. Sure enough the border was closed. So we had to go back to our dates' house and we called our parents and told them we were safe. Said we would check with the tunnel and bridge and as soon as they opened it we would be home.

We waited for a while, listening to the radio and finally the newscaster said that anyone in the Windsor area that had an address in Michigan would be allowed a one hour window of opportunity to cross back into Detroit. So my friend and I set off with promises to call our dates once we were home safe.

The customs officer checked our ID's at the tunnel and I got on the freeway. Everything was going well until we merged onto I94 East. I got into the left hand lane and a car full of black guys pulled up in the right lane. We looked over and saw the guy in the backseat behind the driver and he held up his hand like he was pointing a gun at us. I told my friend to hold on and I punched my '67 Chevy Impala. I don't know how fast we were going but I had no intention of slowing down till we got to the Moross Rd. exit. We left that car of black guys in my dust. I dropped her off and then headed home. At that time I lived in Detroit 1 block East of Van Dyke and 1/2 a block South of 8 Mile Road. Anyway, I was relieved to pull into the driveway and my parents were happy to see me.

I don't remember what day it was that the National Guard came, but they were there in full force. Totally patrolling 8 mile and Van Dyke.

At that time I was working at Good Housekeeping Shops Warehouse on E. Davison and Sherwood. My boss called and said don't come to work, all businesses are closed. I think that lasted a couple of days. One day one of my silly co-workers and I got this idea to go see if everything was okay at the warehouse. We pulled into the parking lot and saw all these heads pop up in the loading dock windows. There was my boss and several of the warehouse men with shotguns and hunting rifles. They had been staying at the warehouse and keeping guard. They yelled at us to "get the hell home - don't you girls know there's trouble!"

With us living so close to Warren and Detroit having a curfew we still had resources just being 1/2 a block from the city limits. My dad could get his beer at this little market in Warren so everything was okay.

I don't remember how many days it went on, but it was hot and we didn't have air conditioning at that time. I slept on the sofa in the front room with a baseball bat next to me just in case. I was on guard at the front line in our house. You could look between the house across the street and see the patrols of National Guards patrolling Van Dyke. Yep, it was a scary time in Detroit's history.
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Omaha
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Username: Omaha

Post Number: 8
Registered: 12-2007
Posted on Friday, January 04, 2008 - 10:36 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I am new to this discussion, and I hope that I am not repeating what’s already been discussed by bringing in the Report of the Advisory Commission on Civil Disturbances (a.k.a. the Kerner Commission) written in 1968. The National Advisory Commission was set up by then President Johnson to look into the causes of the civil disturbances that hit Detroit and other cities in 1967.

I was 21 and saw my father drive to work at approximately Goethe and East Grand Blvd. every day. He was just a block or so away from his alma mater, Easter High School where troops were stationed.

The Kerner Commission was not what would be called a “liberal bleeding-heart commission.” President Johnson, I believe, was deeply disturbed by these civil disturbances (a.k.a. riots, uprisings, rebellions) because he couldn’t understand the causation. After all the Equal Pay Act had been passed in ’63, the Civil Rights Act in ’64, and the Voting Rights Act in ’65. At least real progress toward equality was being made at the federal level. Blacks should have been happy and not angry. Must have been those “communists” stirring up trouble.

Johnson charged the Advisory Commission on Civil Disturbances to look into the causes and see if maybe they were spurred on by troublemaking “outside agitators.” As a result of these starting assumptions, the entire nation was surprised by the Commission’s findings. I truthfully think that is one of the reasons they have been forgotten and are left unmentioned. Here’s a piece from the introduction of the report.

“What white Americans have never fully understood but what the Negro can never forget—is that white society is deeply implicated in the ghetto. White institutions created it, white institutions maintain it, and white society condones it.”

It was hard to put my head around this idea. Hell, the report went all but ignored in the white community except by groups like the Interfaith Centers for Racial Justice and New Detroit.

Even if it was more widely discussed, it would have been rejected by most. It would have been human nature to cast out that information that doesn’t agree with the reality that was already constructed in our heads.

Here’s a couple of quotes that, I believe, sum up that last idea.

Upton Sinclair wrote, “It is difficult to get a man [and I hope that he meant woman too] to understand something when his job depends on not understanding it.” Author Kathy Kelly puts it this way, “Where you stand determines what you see.”

Oh yeah, that’s also what the Kerner Commission quote was saying!
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Eriedearie
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Username: Eriedearie

Post Number: 978
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Monday, March 03, 2008 - 10:06 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I just received this in an email. There are 57 pictures depicting the historical event in Detroit's history.

http://info.detnews.com/pix/ph otogalleries/newsgallery/07192 007_67riots/index.htm
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Kathinozarks
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Username: Kathinozarks

Post Number: 1136
Registered: 11-2006
Posted on Wednesday, April 02, 2008 - 11:08 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Erie, those pix are disturbing. It was good to see them, though.
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Classicyesfan
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Username: Classicyesfan

Post Number: 32
Registered: 04-2008
Posted on Monday, April 07, 2008 - 12:59 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Pamequus, Jane,

I think there is another related reason for the "white flight" from Detroit. School integration was imminent to counter the segregated nature of Detroit. There were whites moving from the inner 'burbs because busing across city lines was being proposed. I recall some disturbed Downriver residents trying to find more distant housing in Carleton!
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Farlane
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Username: Farlane

Post Number: 3
Registered: 05-2007
Posted on Wednesday, July 23, 2008 - 7:29 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks for sharing these pics. Over on Absolute Michigan we have a feature about the riot that includes video with a Gordon Lightfoot song about it that was banned in the US:
http://www.absolutemichigan.co m/dig/michigan/remembering-the -detroit-riot-of-1967/
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Jita1
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Username: Jita1

Post Number: 86
Registered: 08-2008
Posted on Wednesday, September 10, 2008 - 1:03 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wow, thanks for sharing. My mother filmed tanks riding down Livernois during the riots. She may have some other footage too. I'm going to ask is she still has that footage and see about putting it on DVD.
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Eriedearie
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Username: Eriedearie

Post Number: 3110
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Sunday, September 14, 2008 - 1:05 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Jita1 - yeah, that is an excellent idea on that film of your mother's. I hope she still has it and that it's very well preserved. Such history in the making. I still have the visions in my head of what all I saw happening at 8 Mile and Van Dyke. Wish I could have afforded a movie camera back then. I probably could have taken pictures, but in all the excitement and drama just didn't think about it at the time.
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Philbo
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Username: Philbo

Post Number: 9
Registered: 09-2008
Posted on Thursday, September 18, 2008 - 11:52 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've studied the riot and whats weird to me is that Grand River was burned to the ground and yet Gratiot was for the most part spared of arson. Anybody know why?
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Eastsideal
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Username: Eastsideal

Post Number: 297
Registered: 10-2007
Posted on Monday, February 09, 2009 - 7:15 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

For one thing, Grand River had a lot more retail on it than Gratiot. The only big retail area on Gratiot is up around 7 Mile, well away from any part of the riot. Grand River was much closer to the main riot area, on the near west side centering around 12th St., than Gratiot was. And even then, Grand River was hardly "burned to the ground" The main damage on Grand River was in the areas around Warren and around W. Grand Blvd. Most of the riot damage on the east side was confined to the retail strips on Kercheval and Mack.
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Philbo
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Username: Philbo

Post Number: 85
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Posted on Saturday, February 21, 2009 - 12:08 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Thanks for the post Eastideal, but I have to disagree on 2 points. There were large retail centers around Gratiot/Van Dyke and Gratiot/Harper areas to name a few. The arson on Grand River extended frome roughly Trumbull north to Joy road although the Warren and W. Grand Blvd. Areas were hit especially hard. I have heard that the west side was hit harder because it had a higher population density. I used "burned to the ground " as a figure of speech.
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Eastsideal
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Username: Eastsideal

Post Number: 356
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Posted on Friday, February 27, 2009 - 1:48 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Gratiot/Van Dyke was pretty much just a Sears store - like the one at Grand River and Oakman - but without the surrounding stores. Gratiot/Harper was a number of small stores and some lunch counters and hamburger joints (and the Northeastern Y where I learned to swim), but little major retail. The big shopping area around there was at Van Dyke and Harper, which had many name stores, a Federal's, and a large movie theater in the Eastown (where I saw my first movie). On the other hand, a lot of the businesses along Gratiot were more utilitarian like auto parts, small tool shops, and neighborhood bars.
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Philbo
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Post Number: 87
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Posted on Friday, February 27, 2009 - 11:06 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Eastsideal, your probably right. The only thing I can think of is that Grand River had a large number of furniture stores which are almost always a target of looters and arsonists. Funny you mentioned Harper and Van Dyke. I was living down there during the riot. I went to the Eastown in the early 60's and attended the old Burroughs school at Georgia and St. Cyril Sts. and St. Thomas on Miller near Van Dyke. Theres a good D.V.D out now " The Detroit Riots, 1968 " ( They got the year wrong ) thats pretty good. Its without sound but shows some great Aerial coverage of smoldering fires especially around the Grand River/14th area. It lasts about 23 Min. but at 10$ I'd call it a buy. You can get it on E-Bay or go to arhives.gov. Philbo
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Eriedearie
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Username: Eriedearie

Post Number: 3742
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Saturday, February 28, 2009 - 9:41 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Philbo - when did you attend Burroughs?
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Philbo
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Username: Philbo

Post Number: 88
Registered: 09-2008
Posted on Sunday, March 01, 2009 - 12:17 am:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

1965. After that I attended Denby frome 66 to 68.
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Eriedearie
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Username: Eriedearie

Post Number: 3759
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Sunday, March 01, 2009 - 7:31 pm:   Edit PostDelete Post   Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Okay Philbo - just wondered. I was at Burroughs from 1959 - 1962, thought maybe our paths had crossed.

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