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Reflections on Tulsa Past…

Posted on Tuesday, December 16th, 2008.

Suffice it to say, Tulsa is a town of growth. The thriving arts scene, amazing food, people, and architecture. All roses that bloom through the concrete of past pain and indifference. You see, Tulsa was home to one of the largest race riots in US History. In 1921, the thriving black neighborhood of Greenwood was stormed…

By foot.

By car.

By air.

People lost their lives in attempts to protect some semblance of what both sides considered to be right.

Currently, a highway separates what are considered the “Black and White sections of the city.” A reminder that some of the sentiments that were shared in 1921 are still bubbling under the skin of the city calmly waiting for agitation. One that it will not find easily.

Every morning the sun shone down on Tulsa and smiles filled our humble booth. Each day my co-workers and I took part in the city which we called home for 6 weeks. We attended concerts and dinners together, camped out with local citizens, spent Thanksgiving in their homes. Watched as they too witnessed the events of November 4, 2008.

As the saying goes, “When in Rome, do as the Romans do.” Well, for 6 weeks Tulsa was Rome. And as we watched a town quietly and proudly rebuilding and redefining itself, we found ourselves being quietly rebuilt and redefined. In many ways it was a mirror for us all. And in it we saw ourselves growing closer.

So not only do I dedicate this blog entry to Tulsa (you hold a special place with me as a city), but also to Sara and Alex. It was a great place to get to know you both.

A very special thank you to Bernice who made our 6 week hotel stay feel as close to home as possible.

2 Responses to “Reflections on Tulsa Past…”

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  • Have you folks heard the episode of This American Life episode recently about the minister from Tulsa? The episode is called “Heretics” and its brilliant.

    Comment from Andy H. on December 18, 2008 at 12:25 am - Reply to this Comment
  • What a wonderful experience, A daughter and a neice thought I had a story to tell. With Alex making us all feel so comfortable, it was easy. StoryCorps created a blog and the warm comments keeps my ego in the clouds. Some were even from readers and not relatives. I thought of many Tulsans who should have been interviewed. I think I could have talked about them all day. Tulsa is a history lesson that should be published and appreciated.

    Comment from Larry Kilgore on December 17, 2008 at 8:21 am - Reply to this Comment

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