15) Race Riot in North Minneapolis in July of 1967

In the last post you read about my swimming pool antics in the suburbs. In this post you will read why my parents moved from our North Minneapolis neighborhood to Brooklyn Center – racial tension.

By the summer of 1967, we had moved to Brooklyn Center, further away from racial tension in North Minneapolis.

One July evening, after the Aquatennial Parade in Downtown Minneapolis, a race-riot took place on Plymouth Avenue North, just three blocks from our old house on 9th and Morgan Avenue North.

The Mayhem

Screen Shot 2013-03-07 at 9.17.37 AM“Race riots swept through the North Side of Minneapolis in July of 1967. After the Aquatennial Parade, business on Plymouth Avenue were vandalized, and fires were set all over the neighborhood. The photo above shows the burned out shell of a Country Club Market. It was reported that bands of youths roamed the area throwing rocks, bottles and Molotov cocktails. The riot ended after a couple hours, but a shooting set off another incident the following day. The result was 18 fires, 36 arrests, 3 shooting’s, 2 dozen people injured, and damages totaling 4.2 million. At least two more riots took place that summer, and in many ways Plymouth Avenue has never recovered.”

Source: http://www.nokohaha.com/2012/04/25/after-the-aquatennial-riot/

It is curious that one of the only buildings along Plymouth Avenue that was spared from the fires was The Hospitality House Youth Development facility – the same organization that helped us so much at Lincoln Junior High School in 1963-1964.

Did you feel safe in your childhood neighborhoods?

Next: Why Failing in Seven Schools Didn’t Destroy Me 

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