Undertakers and undertaking
= Audio Available Online
In this interview, Mrs. Beckett discusses her life as well as her husbandï¿½s experiences as alderman in the city of Louisville in the late 1940s and early 1950s. Mrs. Beckett briefly describes her early life and education, including her graduation from Kentucky State College. Mrs. Beckett had a career in education, but also worked with her husband, and for her brother, in the undertaking business in Louisville. She speaks of the Walnut Street area before Urban Renewal. Mrs. Beckettï¿½s husband, William Washington Beckett, was elected alderman in 1951 and served until 1961. In this time, he played a role in the integration of the fire and police departments, the parks, and public accommodations, and in developing a Human Relations Commission. Mrs. Beckett discusses her husbandï¿½s contributions and the civil rights movement in general (both in Louisville and more generally) and gives her opinion on the roles of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the African American church.
Mr. Porter is the chairman of the board of trustees of the University of Louisville. He discusses his family's business, A.D. Porter Funeral Home, his father's involvement in politics and his years on the Louisville Board of Education. His life and family history are also included in this interview.