Marsha Brugman: This is June 7, 1977. This is Marsha Brugman and I'm at theParkland branch of the Louisville Free Public Library. We're beginning our project this morning on the Parkland area, the oral history of the Parkland area and the residents of the area. This morning Dr. Lloyd Alexander is going to visit with us about his life history and his remembrances of the Parkland area. Dr. Alexander is 74 years of age. He's a retired college professor having taught at Kentucky State. Dr. Alexander, could you tell me where you were born?
Dr. Lloyd Alexander: I was born in Salem, Virginia in 1902. I . . . I was thetwelfth child of George and Ellen Alexander. My father died when I was six years of age and my mother died when I was fourteen and I stayed with a brother for 1:00one year until I was fifteen and at fifteen years of age I went on my own. I went into . . . a boarding school and worked my way through high school for four years and then went to college. To backup just a little bit, my education was very meager. In Virginia where I attended school we had school only six months out of the year. We started school in November . . . in October, correction, in October and we had school up until March and then we had six months out of school. Now during that time I was in a one room school where I had one teacher 2:00who only had a high school education and he taught all of the subjects in fifteen minutes intervals. So that was my background. Now during these long summer months I did have the forethought to supplement my education and experiences by reading a Bible. I did have a Bible in the home because my father was a deacon in the church and I read the Bible through twice by reading so many chapters each day for exercise and for training. And also in school where we had no library whatsoever, we just had a limited number of books, I studied the dictionary during the school term and also during the summer to try to build up a vocabulary because I realized the education that I was getting at that time 3:00was very meager education. But anyway I did get into high school and had a chance to go to a pretty good high school. It was an all Negro high school in Bluefield, West Virginia. Now from uh . . . after finishing high school I worked on the railroad yard for one solid year in order to save enough money to go to the University of Michigan. From uh . . . then when I entered the University of Michigan after paying my tuition and buying my books, I had money enough to carry me for about 6 weeks.
MB: Oh my!
LA: But I had faith to believe that somehow I would be able to go throughbecause I had worked my way through high school. I went to the employment office 4:00and was able to get a job washing dishes and pots and pans at a fraternity house. And weekends I would work at downtown hotel and make extra money; so I did that to get myself through the first school year. And then I got out through the summer and I would load lumber, work on boats, work with the asphalt gangs on the streets, anything to continue my education. So to make a long story short, I did that for five years and came out of the University of Michigan with my bachelors and masters degrees. Then my idea was to take medicine. I was accepted into medicine at the University of Michigan but I never had the money 5:00to pay the, to make the, to pay the fees and also the doctor told me that I was getting nervous and I would never be able to work my way through that, that I would have to give all my time to my studies. So I got in touch with my friend in West Virginia who was my high school principal and he helped me to locate a job teaching in one of the high schools in West Virginia. So I did that for two years and tried to save enough money to still go back into medicine, but I never reached that point where I had a sufficient amount of money. Because I had sacrificed so much, I let myself go and I did buy some new clothes for the first time because up until that time I had been wearing second hand clothes even through the University of Michigan, buying second hand clothes. So the break 6:00came when I was asked to come to Fisk University to teach on condition, that uh with the stipulation that if I made good in teaching that I would get a general education board fellowship to go away and study on my doctorate degree because I had decided I wasn't going to stop with my masters. So I went to Fisk University, taught one year and then went to the University of Chicago, started on my doctorate the second year and then went back to Michigan, uh Fisk University to teach for the second year and then back to the University of Chicago for research. Now, at that time, the man that I was working under carrying on my research at the University of Chicago, decided that he was going to leave and go to the University of Rochester. So eight of us graduate students 7:00who had started out working under him in experimental embryology packed up and went to the University of Rochester with him. And that accounts for me receiving my doctor's degree from the University of Rochester. I continued to teach after that at Fisk University for nineteen years and then went to Kentucky State University as a professor of Biology and chairman of the department where I remained for the next twenty-three years and then retired in 1972. Now I married in 1934 and my first wife gave me two sons before she passed in 1949. I remarried in 1952 and that is my present wife. My two sons both finished Fisk 8:00University. The second one finished Fisk University with a 3.95 average. One B in four years! He is now teaching at the University of California at Santa Barbara having received his doctorate degree at Stanford University in French Intellectual History. The oldest son majored in business and mathematics and he went on to Harvard, University of Chicago, and then with IBM and he's now with Stanford Research Institute as a consultant working in Saudi Arabia.
MB: Oh my goodness!
LA: That takes care of my family to date.9:00
MB: Let me ask you . . . back up a little bit . . . it seems like you had such aremarkable push and drive to get an education. Can you remember at what point you knew where you were going, you knew that you wanted to go to college?
LA: Well I had the desire all the way through to see how far I could go on myown. I felt that if I didn't take on too much responsibility and the good Lord gave me health and strength that I could go to the utmost. So I always had that faith. When I started high school I felt I could work my way through. When I finished high school, even though I had no money to enter college immediately, I felt that if I continued to keep in mind that I wanted to be something that I could eventually get to college and of course by saving my money and living 10:00quite thriftily I was able to get enough to go to Michigan. Although it was on a limited, with . . . uh limited funds, but I felt that if I told my story of how desirous I was of an education that I would get assistance somewhere along the way and I did get that assistance at each step of the way. I always felt that I could come to someone and talk. And I did get inspiration from several individuals along the way who told me that, "With your determination you can do anything you want." Now I didn't get the medicine but I did get my doctorate, the next best thing I wanted.
MB: Did it . . . of course talking to many other blacks around your age, so many11:00of them said, "I just knew that I couldn't do it because I was black or people told me I couldn't do it, or I couldn't get into school because I was black."
MB: Did you face that much along the way or did you just decide that you weregoing to get it and that was it?
LA: Well I did face that and many people told me but I just didn't believe it. Ijust had faith enough in myself to believe that I could if I kept up the determination that I had. I was never considered a bright student. I was always considered just an average student but I felt that being an average student if I put in a sufficient amount of time I could overcome any difficulty or overcome any handicap if I contained my health. Now I was not able to participate in athletics and other things like the other students because while they were enjoying themselves in activities I was putting in extra hours studying. But I 12:00just had faith to believe and I knew where I wanted to go. I knew I wanted the top, whether it was medicine or whether it was in the doctorate field, I wanted to reach the top. and I would not tie myself down even though I was very much in love several times, I would not tie myself down with marriage because I decided that I didn't want any woman to have to go through what I was going through in the way of sacrifice. And I was willing to make the sacrifice. I just considered that a normal pattern. Also I developed early something that helped me very much. It was a system whereby I rewarded myself when I felt that I was making progress and deprived myself when I felt I wasn't making progress. For instance, I never smoked but I was very fond of candy, candy bars. Now when I didn't make 13:00what I expected on a test or didn't perform as I wanted to in a class, I would deny myself of a candy bar. If I felt that I was doing quite well and I deserved a reward then I would buy myself a candy bar or two candy bars. So I kept, I held that system and I found it very very effective, this reward/denial system.
MB: Can you walk into a store today and see a candy bar and not remember it! (Laughter)
LA: Well now I can't eat the candy bars very well! But I do actually use thatsystem in my everyday life now to some extent because there's certain things I enjoy now but if I don't feel that I am making the progress. If I haven't saved 14:00any money for old age and if I don't feel that I have saved necessary then I don't buy myself anything. If I feel that I have . . . have made some gain in saving something of that nature, then I will go ahead and buy myself a new tie, a new suit, or something like that. So I still use that system to some extent. And I certainly recommend that system to anyone who wants to get somewhere in life.
MC: That's amazing! It takes an amazing amount of self-control!
LA: It really does. It really does. You really got to use self-control and themany times in which you just hurt yourself because you denied. But if you just stick to that system you'll find that it works very well. I have never been able to get my children to operate that way but that is the system that worked for 15:00me. Of course my children have never had to go through the hardships that I have gone through, never have.
MB: What happened to your brothers and sisters along the way?
LA: Well my brothers and sisters have all passed away except for one brother. Ihave one brother who lives in Lynchburg, Virginia who is 89. And I had a sister to live until she was got 94 and a half.
MB: Oh my goodness!
LA: And she passed two years ago. All the others passed at the age, say betweenthirty and fifty-five.
MB: Oh my! [Short pause] Well let's talk a little bit about the Parkland area.If you came into Kentucky and were teaching at Kentucky State, which I 16:00understand is in the Frankfort, how did you end up in the Parkland area in Louisville?
LA: Well it's a simple story. In 19 and fifty . . . 19 and 52, after I had beenwithout a wife for three years, I started looking around and I was taking out a young lady here in Louisville and we married in '52 and her home was already, she was already established here in Louisville so that's why I happen to . . . to be centered here in Louisville. Having married her I commuted back and forth to Frankfort up until I retired.
MB: And then you brought your 2 children then to Louisville with you?
LA: Well the two children at the time . . . . You're off now?
MB: No it's on.
LA: Okay. At the time the two children, at the time my first wife died in '49 my17:00two children were seven and ten. And their grandmother lived in Hopkinsville, Kentucky and she was very fond of the children and she wanted me, and I consented, the children to live with her. She and her husband both had retired and the children went to live with her. Of course I kept them up there and once a month I would go down to check on them to see that they were getting along well, and they were happy and what not. So since I was living in a single room in Frankfort then it wasn't good to try to bring them there.
MB: Yeah, right and working and everything.
LA: Yes, so I had to just . . . my furniture and what not we had, I had todispose of that for the time being rather than to pay a storage on. And the 18:00children made their home with her and gradually went to college and of course the grandparents subsequently died but the children were grown. They were college age at that time and then they kind of made it on their own. So that's how I happened to be here in Louisville.
MB: And that was in '52?
LA: '52 and I retired in '72, twenty years later I retired.
MB: Have you always lived . . . .LA: After we married in '52, we married over onAlms (?) Street. But in '53 we started to buying a house of our own. We looked around in the area of Louisville and there were very few houses for sale at that time in a desirable neighborhood. Now the block here on Virginia where I now 19:00live was an all-white block nothing but whites lived on that block, up until '52. Now in '53 one Negro family was able to buy a house in that block and from that time on the whole block had signs for sale that people were anxious to get out of the block, running from this one family that had moved in, this Negro family that had moved in. So we looked in the block and we saw several houses in the block that we liked and we finally decided to buy the house that we now own.
MB: Oh, so you've lived there for many years!
LA: Yes. At that time in '53 it was a very beautiful block. The houses werelarge. The trees were well trimmed. The grass was nice and green. The shrubbery 20:00was kept up well. The house was painted and it was a very beautiful block back in '52 and '53. But uh . . . shall I go on with the?
MB: Yeah, yeah.
LA: Now since that time though the block . . . the block . . . twenty-eight andtwenty-nine hundred block of Virginia have gone down greatly and we now are very much just satisfied living on the block. The first four houses as you leave twenty-Eighth Street, the first four houses have already been boarded up. They were large houses taken over by families that didn't occupy the whole house but what they did, they thought it was a money making proposition, they could take over part of the house and rent out the rest of the house. All right what happened in many cases the people who bought the houses moved to other regions 21:00and filled up the houses with roomers and consequently the houses just deteriorated and deteriorated and the people collected less and less rent and as a result many of the houses went completely down. Now the houses in the middle of the block are still in fair condition because the families there are stable families. But on the two ends of the blocks, the beginning and the end of the block near the railroad track, the houses have gone down like everything and we don't see any possibility of the block ever looking respectable again. Now in the regards to the shopping area, another thing we looked at when we decided on buying was my wife was teaching and of course I was commuting back and forth to Frankfort two or three times a week, we looked into the possibility of having an 22:00area where we could get services and buy food or what not without going long distances because my wife wasn't driving at all at that time and I just had the one car. Now the Parkland area there round Dumesnil and the 28th from Virginia to Dumesnil and the first block of Dumesnil, we had some of the finest shopping centers, shopping areas you'd find anywhere in Louisville. For instance we had a meat, a Key Market . . . a Key Market over on 28th, 28th and Dumesnil, which had the best meat of any store that we could find in Louisville. We had an A & P grocery store which was very modern, very clean and what not. We had a bakery 23:00shop. We had a Swiss Cleaning place in the block. We had two hardware stores, up to date Hardware stores, Anderson's and Klein's. We had a ten cents store. We had a very fine drug store. And we had all of the fine stores. We had two filling stations on the corner. We had all the facilities that we would want for good calm, good living within a block of our home. This was in '53 and a few years thereafter. But after that, as more negroes came into the neighborhood . . . we ran into rowdy elements around and there was tremendous breaking in, breaking in and looting of places and shoplifters, and all of this came in and 24:00our neighborhood went down, went down terribly! Today it is a very very sad state. We don't have a decent store in the Parkland area at this time. Now the old A & P store has been through three or four changes since '52. Now it looks like some other individuals are coming in and that may be the beginning of a good store once more, but as far as the filling stations have closed. There's no hardware store. Uh . . . and we don't see the possibility of it ever being too 25:00much again.
MB: It's really discouraging.
LA: It really is discouraging. Not only that but when we first came in we couldwalk up on the corner after dinner, we could walk around the block and feel reasonably safe, but now you dare not walk very far from your home at night! Because you read in the paper from time to time of the people who have had their pocketbooks jerked out of the hands of ladies, the men who have been hit over the head with clubs and what not, within blocks of our house. So the only thing we could do is to at dusk is to go in the house and lock up!
MB: So in '52 or the early fifties then this was primarily a middle class, uppermiddle class area then huh? 26:00
LA: Yes it definitely was, it definitely was.
MB: What do you think some of the reasons are for this? The decline, you knowyou talk about more of the black families moving in. But is it because then of unemployment? Is it because people are not occupied?
LA: That is it to a large extent, because you know the Negro laborer is the lastone to be hired and the first one to be fired. And we have gone to economic conditions whereby many Negroes have lost their jobs and as a result that has brought havoc to our neighborhood. And that's why we have so many young people out now because they get nothing from their parents and as a result they feel that whatever they can get by stealing and robbing people that is their only source of change and that contributes to a large extent to our economic 27:00condition here in this area.
MB: Kind of leaves you in a conflict because you have your own property, youhave the things that you've worked very hard to obtain, the things that you remember about your neighborhood and enjoy and yet you see people coming in, you know the reasons why they are doing the things they are doing, but yet they are taking away from neighborhood and the area and that is very sad.
LA: That is too, because the house, we have put much into the house. I have putthousands and thousands of dollars getting the house up to the point where I wanted it. But . . . and I've put much labor into myself, labor that even, labor even the delicate labor that you couldn't buy, I have put into the house trying to make it a real nice place from the point of the street, also from the point 28:00of living within. And it hurts me to know that if I put it up on the market, which I will very soon, that I will get less than we actually put in there originally. In spite of the fact that we have remodeled the house and put thousands and thousands of dollars into the house.
MB: Uh-huh and I know that block, it's a beautiful block! Large homes!
LA: Well it is! After you leave the three on this side, the three on this sideand the one over here, on this side next to the Jacksons, it's just boarded up. Now Dr. James used to have a . . . she moved in . . . .MB: Grace James?
LA: What's that?
MB: Grace James?
LA: Yeah, she moved into that block about a year after we moved in. Sheremodeled that big house there, put a lot of money into it!
MB: Is she still living there now?
LA: Oh no, no! She sold the house and then it just went from bad to worse.29:00
MB: That's a shame.
LA: No, she lives down on 44th street now.
MB: Twenty, twenty-five years ago, what do you remember about, besides theparticular businesses around the Dumesnil area, what do you remember about the factories, the corporations, you know, the larger employers, were they close in the Parkland area? For instance like Reynolds Metals or Reynolds Aluminum.
LA: They're over there, they're over there.
MB: Did they employ a lot of people in the Parkland rea? Did they help theeconomy in the Parkland area?
LA: Well to tell the truth I don't know where they get the large number ofemployees from, I don't know. But I am sure some of them come from the Parkland area, I'm sure they do. And also another big industry is the Anderson (?) Lumber Yard over there at Beech and Dumesnil, Anderson Lumber Yard. Now they do a 30:00tremendous amount of work over there. One of the biggest lumber companies in town! But they employ a large number of people, I imagine many of them from this area right around here. But of course they have maintained status quo. They were there when we came there and they're there now.
MB: But thank heavens they are not pulling out like some of these smaller . . .. I suppose with some of these smaller businesses that have had to deal with shoplifting and robbers and stuff, they haven't had any choice. These larger companies can employ guards, put up fences and protect themselves . . .
LA: That's right, that's right.
MB: So they don't move out. What was the function of churches, say twenty totwenty-five years ago in this area?
LA: Well in this particular area twenty-five years ago you had a large number ofchurches around but those churches were owned and attended by whites in this 31:00area. The Negro churches, the black churches for most part, were over around Chestnut and Walnut Streets, over in that area. But since that time just about all of these churches have gone over to Negroes. Negroes have taken over just about all of these churches since that time.
MB: Pardon me for just a minute. I need to turn it over on the other side.
MB: Okay we're over on the second side. We were discussing the changeover of thechurches that say in the 50s were originally white owned churches and white attended churches and now they are black churches.
LA: Yes, now they are black churches. They've gone over ( )MB: Is attendancestill high that you know? Is it as important to belong to a church in the area 32:00as it was say twenty years ago, participation, you know, active participation in the church?
LA: Well I imagine so . . . I imagine so. Now the church I belong to is over on,is over on Chestnut Street, Chestnut and Seventeenth . . . Plymouth Congregation Church. That's one of the oldest churches in town. It's getting ready to celebrate its 100th anniversary. But the church there has gone down in enrollment; down and down and down. It's not taking in any new members and its losing many of its old members. But now the churches in this neighborhood now that are black churches, they started elsewhere and they have moved into this neighborhood bodily. Now the families haven't necessarily moved because of the churches but the church body has moved. You get what I mean? 33:00
MB: Yeah, right.
LA: The church body has moved. As the white churches have moved out into thesuburbs, the Negro churches, the Negroes have taken over many of the churches.
MB: The buildings that were already here.
LA: That's right, yes. Even there on Broadway, you know recently one or twochurches made a big change there, there on . . . not on Broadway . . . on Fourth Street. That big Unitarian Church.
LA: You see it went over to some Negro church recently.
MB: What about schools in the immediate area when you moved here in the 50s? Doyou remember what public schools serviced the area?
LA: Uh . . . let me see . . . in '52, let me see . . . in '52 the schools werestill segregated in '52. I can't tell you much. I know that all of the Negro 34:00students that lived scattered around, all of them went to Central High School.
MB: Uh-huh, that was the only . . . .LA: That was the only Negro high school inthe city, all of them went there. Now as the gentleman told us yesterday there were several junior high schools, one in the west end, one in the east end and all of the negro students went to those two. Now the elementary, I font know anything about the elementary schools.
MB: Course your children were not educated here.
LA: No, no they were not educated here. They were educated in Hopkinsville. Andat Fisk University. Hopkinsville City system. Of course their schools were supposedly fully integrated at the time they attended but they did go to an all Negro high school in Hopkinsville. Hopkinsville lagged behind ( ) city like Louisville where they forcibly integrated quicker than they would in Hopkinsville. 35:00
MB: Uh-huh and it took us long enough, heaven only knows how long it took someof these other areas. (Said with laughter) What about recreational kinds of things, twenty-five years ago, the Parkland area. You mentioned that you and your wife used to like to walk in the evenings around the neighborhood and everything. Was there any other special kind of activity that you could do in the Parkland area? Such as, we have tennis courts, and you know, this is the big thing now.
LA: There are one or two down in the extreme west end, a park down there. Theyhad a Negro park down there.
MB: Chickasaw or Shawnee?
LA: Uh, one of those. Chickasaw probably. They had a Negro park down there and awhite park. Well now the Negroes had to go to that Negro park. They couldn't participate, they couldn't even stop in the white park! And probably in the east end probably they had something for the Negroes. But the facilities for the 36:00Negroes were very very meager, very meager. But as for bowling . . . there at the time I came around there was only one place in Louisville where the Negroes could bowl and that was at the YMCA on 10th and Chestnut. That's the only place they could bowl. They couldn't bowl at these other places. See everything was segregated!
MB: You just . . . I just don't think about those things!
LA: And restaurants . . . restaurants, you couldn't, there wasn't a restaurantin town that you could go into! And our daughter long about the late 50s, our daughter was put in jail because she was marching down there in front of Blue Boar there on Walnut Street trying to open up Blue Boar. And she and a group of them were put in jail because they marched in front of the place trying to open 37:00it up!
MB: Protesting that they couldn't go inside to eat.
LA: Yes, protesting, because there wasn't a place down there, and if you wentinto a ten cent store you went in there and got your sandwich wrapped up and you went on out in the street and ate. And that was true! And out in St. Matthews I remember, my wife and I used to go out to Frisch's Big Boy because that was one of the first places where you could go in and get a hamburger and steak or something like that and sit down at the table and eat it. So we would go out there Friday afternoons after she came out of school and after I came in rom Frankfort, because there was no place . . .
MB: And that was a treat.
LA: Yea! There was no place downtown where you could go. Now the airport, theydid open up a restaurant out there. That was one of the first places they integrated where Negroes could go, the airport restaurant. For some reason the 38:00government made them put the bars down early and on a few occasions we went out there and had our dinner out at the airport. And the fairgrounds, when the fairgrounds opened up they had a restaurant out there and we went out there, all the way out to the fairgrounds on Friday afternoon or Sunday afternoon to have dinner. And I belonged to a club and there was no place downtown we could have our Christmas party so we would carry it all the way out to the fairgrounds and they would give us one corner of the dining room out there and kind of block it off so we could have our Christmas Party out there at the fairgrounds. And that's the first place we were able to have our Christmas party outside of the home.
MB: I just don't . . . you know I didn't live here then and I'm younger and I39:00just didn't even think about that.
LA: You can understand why . . . you can understand why some of the young peopleare a bit bitter because they hear these experiences that their parents have gone through. And it may be hard to understand sometimes why the older people, older Negro people are not more bitter than they are after what they have gone through.
MB: That's very interesting.
LA: But many of them have become mellow and tolerant. But the kids haven't gonethrough that and when they hear stories of what happened at one time and what the parents had to go through they become very irritated and you can understand why some of them, especially the emotional kids, would be that way.
MB: Uh-huh. It's amazing to me though to even think about someone who has adoctorate degree with a fine education and a college professor yourself being 40:00limited to such few recreational facilities. I mean that is really amazing!
LA: Well when I came into the state I had a good friend who had studied at theUniversity of Chicago under the same man I had studied to get his doctorate degree, and he was over a the University of Kentucky. So we have in this state what is known as the Kentucky Academy of Science. He invited me to come in as a member. I was the only Negro member in this Kentucky Academy of Science even though I had my doctorate and was head of the biology department at Kentucky State University. All right after that of course a few others came in, but we had a meeting, we had a meeting, over . . . our fall meeting was over in Richmond at Eastern State University. I rode over there to see if I could get a 41:00room at one of the motels around so I could attend the meetings over there on the weekend. Do you know that motels would not . . . it was on the Kentucky State University stationary . . . they would not give me a room over there! They would not give me a room because they knew coming from Kentucky Sate University at that time that I had to be a Negro. So they would not permit me a room over there anywhere in Richmond. Now . . . incidentally that same organization which has five members, made me president fifteen years later, president of the Kentucky Academy of Science.
MB: Oh my!
LA: Now, I was going to say, now what I did I stayed at Berea, Kentucky because42:00Berea, Kentucky has always been considered very liberal. And they had this hotel there that was very famous.
MB: Boone Tavern.
LA: Boone Tavern. So I stayed at Boone Tavern ten miles from Richmond . . .
MB: Uh-huh and commuted back and forth.
LA: And commuted back and forth while attending this meeting in Richmond.
MB: Of course you were probably lucky Berea was that close because I imaginepeople in your position you either didn't get to go to the conferences or you camped out or you commuted back and forth home if you wanted to attend anything like that. Back to the Parkland area itself . . . we were talking about recreational kinds of things. You mentioned several eating spots that began to open up and they were of course in other, way other portions of the city, bowling down at the Y and the one negro park down in the west end. Were there any other kinds of facilities in the Parkland area or was it just a question of 43:00going where ever the community you could find them?
LA: Yes, because originally this has been predominantly a white area, see peoplearound here were white and as a result you didn't start out having any areas here for recreation for Negroes and it wasn't until full integration, which was many many years later that things opened up in this area. So they just didn't have them! They just didn't have them. Negroes just played in the alley or round in the street or things like that.
MB: In your yard if you had it.
LA: Yes and that was it.
MB: What about . . . is there a public swimming pool right in the Parkland areathat you were ever aware of? I'm sure the public swimming pools were segregated for years and years and years.
LA: Oh yes that is true. They had one down at the extreme west end. Down, Iguess in Chickasaw Park. Chickasaw Park I think they had one and that was 44:00probably about the only one in the city.
MB: So if you were black and you wanted to go swimming you had to figure out howto get to the swimming pool?
LA: That's right! You had to go there and that was it!
MB: Can you think of any other changes that you have seen over the years?Obviously it's been kind of disappointing to see the way the area has gone down.
LA: Well I can't, I don't see any changes that . . . (long pause) that uh . . .we are talking about changes . . . . I really don't. I don't see any . . . I can't recall any other changes that have taken place on the spur of the moment, beneficial or otherwise.
MB: You mentioned you were thinking of putting your home up for sale fairlysoon. Are you planning on moving out of the area then?
LA: Well definitely so, we certainly don't want to be in this area. Now where we45:00would go I don't know. Whether we'd buy a home in some other area of the city which maybe where they are having problems also. I understood from my plumber yesterday that there wasn't any area in this city that is free from a lot of trouble at this present time. So I don't know if we would go somewhere else in the city or out of the city. I don't want to go into an apartment unless I have to because part of my living now, my everyday living, is getting out on the ground playing around with the shrubbery and growing plants and what not. And I would hate to be at the point where I would be off of the ground. ..
MB: Have to give that up.
LA: . . . and couldn't communicate with the earth, with nature. Because over a46:00period of time when I have had problems I have always resorted to a garden, growing flowers, whatnot, as a recreation, something very helpful to me. Now I recall when I was in Nashville, Tennessee my first wife was sick for about seven years before she passed and during that time had the two little boys and when I would come home from my laboratory in the afternoon, after I passed through the house I would always find that I could go outside and see the flowers and communicate with nature and give me new vigor to fight on. Because sometime . . . the illness situation would be such that I would be up almost all night but if before I went to my class in the morning if I could walk out and see the change 47:00that had taken place in my flowers or something like that overnight that would give me inspiration to move on.
MB: So obviously over the years you have invested a lot emotionally in your homeand your yard and grounds.
LA: That is true.
MB: You must certainly be disappointed.
LA: I raise a large number of flowers. I have anywhere from a thousand tofifteen hundred tulips, daffodils and hyacinths blooming in my yard every spring and I've already taken up about half of them and put in summer flowers which will bloom up until frost. And then those flowers then will be taken up and the bulbs will be put back in the ground to bloom next spring. So I do that over and over. That gives me joy! It gives me something to do. It keeps me physically fit. And it is something that I just don't have to do but I can regularly so I 48:00have a little bit to do day by day. It makes it very nice.
MB: So that would be very hard to give up. Well I think I've kind of come to theend of any questions that I had. It was very very interesting. Can you think of anything else that you wanted to offer?
LA: Well I hope what I said can be useful some way.
MB: Oh yes I think it will very much. Well thank you a lot!
LA: Well I don't know of anything else. Now what the future holds I don't know.I just don't know . . . my wife has one more year. She has been teaching about thirty-one or thirty two years out at Atherton and she has one more year. So after that time I imagine she will get respite and we'll certainly make some move but what move it is and which direction I can't predict at this time. I do 49:00know that I do not want to go into an apartment although arthritis is beginning to set in on me some and of course I don't see as well as I used to so I may have to give up the big yard and house upkeep and the yard upkeep because I'm not able to physically . . .