This group interview explores changes in the Detroit Shoreway neighborhood, including details about Battery Park, Union Carbide, Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization, Edgewater Park, and Herman Avenue.


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Whitney, Gladys (interviewee);Atkins, Minnie (interviewee);Massey, Helen (interviewee);Massey, Elwood (interviewee)


Yanoshik-Wing, Emma (interviewer);Hunter, Tiffany (interviewer)


Detroit Shoreway



Document Type

Oral History


73 minutes


Transcription sponsored by Detroit Shoreway Community Development Organization

Minnie Atkins [00:00:01] Okay.

Tiffany Hunter [00:00:03] You start talking to see where the levels are.

Minnie Atkins [00:00:06] Yes, please.

Tiffany Hunter [00:00:06] Yeah, continue.

Minnie Atkins [00:00:10] Now he's lost for words.

Tiffany Hunter [00:00:15] Oh, wow.

Minnie Atkins [00:00:16] This is what it was.

Helen Massey [00:00:21] That's neat.

Tiffany Hunter [00:00:23] What are the pictures?

Helen Massey [00:00:24] That's going to be the before and after he took pictures when they was tearing it down and that sort of thing.

Tiffany Hunter [00:00:32] How many acres is that over there? You guys know?

Elwood Massey [00:00:35] Like 13, 12.

Helen Massey [00:00:36] Oh, they've told us many times, but I don't.

Minnie Atkins [00:00:39] She knows.

Elwood Massey [00:00:40] Yeah, I think so.

Minnie Atkins [00:00:42] This thing was big. It's pretty good size because it goes all the way from 73rd to 76th. That's 73rd and 74th and 76th. So there's what, three blocks?

Helen Massey [00:00:53] Yeah. Yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:00:55] There used to be a street run between.

Minnie Atkins [00:00:58] Mm hmm.

Elwood Massey [00:00:58] Over there.

Minnie Atkins [00:00:59] Yeah, they did.

Elwood Massey [00:01:00] And then they shut it down to.

Minnie Atkins [00:01:02] Build more in our parking lot.

Helen Massey [00:01:06] You don't think Charlie's gonna make it then?

Elwood Massey [00:01:08] No, I heard they.

Helen Massey [00:01:21] He might mosey in after a while.

Minnie Atkins [00:01:25] Can you guys remember when there was no road down there on 73rd? When you'd have to go down in where Union Carbide is and turn around and come back?

Helen Massey [00:01:34] No. No.

Minnie Atkins [00:01:34] You don't remember when the truck route was built?

Helen Massey [00:01:37] No, I don't think I do, but I can't remember what happened yesterday either.

Minnie Atkins [00:01:42] They built a truck route just for Union Carbide trucks.

Helen Massey [00:01:45] Oh, they did.

Minnie Atkins [00:01:46] Because my street over there, 73rd, was very, very weak.

Helen Massey [00:01:50] Really?

Minnie Atkins [00:01:50] Yeah, now these big tractors and stuff going down here to work, I'm scared to death. It's gonna fall in. Take my house with it, you know?

Helen Massey [00:01:58] I know.

Minnie Atkins [00:01:58] Since I live on the corner.

Tiffany Hunter [00:02:00] Well, I'm gonna get ready to introduce the date, and I'm gonna introduce each and every one of you guys names and kind of, like, go into it.

Helen Massey [00:02:06] Okay. Okay. Okay.

Tiffany Hunter [00:02:08] Today's April 18, 2006. We're here with Helen and Elwood Massey, Gladys Whitney, Keith, and Minnie Atkins. Okay. So I'm just gonna kind of, like, start out. People can start answering questions as they go, but I just want to get like a. Just like a where you guys came from, where, you know, where you grew up, where you were born, type thing.

Minnie Atkins [00:02:30] That would be fine.

Tiffany Hunter [00:02:31] And I guess I'll start with Helen or Elwood, whoever wants to go first. And I just, you know, get some background. I want to know you guys too, you know.

Helen Massey [00:02:41] Well, I've been in Cleveland since 1955, and I came from Tennessee.

Minnie Atkins [00:02:52] A little southern.

Helen Massey [00:02:54] Yeah. And then I worked for General Electric for 30 years.

Tiffany Hunter [00:03:01] General Electric.

Helen Massey [00:03:03] General Electric, Cleveland in Cleveland or just in Cleveland?

Minnie Atkins [00:03:07] Where was it located?

Helen Massey [00:03:08] On 45th. 45th and Commerce Hough around in there.

Minnie Atkins [00:03:13] Oh, on the east side? Yeah, I lived over there at one time.

Helen Massey [00:03:16] Oh, did you?

Minnie Atkins [00:03:16] Yeah, when I first came to Cleveland.

Helen Massey [00:03:18] Oh, okay.

Minnie Atkins [00:03:19] 1956.

Helen Massey [00:03:20] You're from West Virginia, right?

Minnie Atkins [00:03:22] Yes. I was born in a coal mining camp. Oh, wow.

Elwood Massey [00:03:26] She worked at the coal mine 20 years before you came.

Minnie Atkins [00:03:28] Yeah, I did. I've been in the coal mines.

Helen Massey [00:03:31] Have you now? What else?

Tiffany Hunter [00:03:34] Oh, just keep going. How'd you end up in Cleveland, really? Like, you know, just. Is your family moved here?

Helen Massey [00:03:41] No, for a job? For a job. Because there was no jobs where I grew up. There was no work there whatsoever. They are now. Cause a lot of plants have moved from up here down there now. But when I was growing up, there was no jobs down there. And I came here to get a job, had all my three kids here.

Tiffany Hunter [00:04:03] It's amazing how you went from a place that didn't have jobs and Cleveland was the place.

Helen Massey [00:04:08] Mm hmm.

Tiffany Hunter [00:04:08] You know, like we were talking about, like, with industry and, you know, they were just prosperous.

Helen Massey [00:04:12] Cleveland used to be a booming city, but not any more, I don't think.

Tiffany Hunter [00:04:17] Wow. So you moved here for the jobs and kind of settled down here too?

Elwood Massey [00:04:22] Yeah, I was raised in West Virginia and went to school, graduated from high school back there. And the one thing that they made sure we knew and learned in high school was to route 21, to get on it, to go as far as I'd go, and that I end up in Cleveland.

Minnie Atkins [00:04:43] I remember. I remember taking them routes.

Tiffany Hunter [00:04:47] Old 21.

Elwood Massey [00:04:48] I got a job at General Electric, worked there for 35 years, retired.

Minnie Atkins [00:04:53] That's how you two met? Oh, yeah, that job.

Elwood Massey [00:04:56] I worked at 45th, and then I went to Nela Park, and that's where I ended up.

Tiffany Hunter [00:05:02] Wow, so you. So you moved here cause you knew the route to get to here, huh?

Elwood Massey [00:05:07] Right. No, I had a sister that lived up here, and her husband worked at the bakery. And so you go where your family or something's that, you know, you shoot up there and see if you can get a job because there was a lot of work Nela Park and all around, you know. So we got out, me and my brother, and walked down the streets. Every place you go into would want to hire you. And so GE sounded good, you know. And so both of us went to work there. He worked about a year and I worked 35, and that was it. Retired from there. Retired when I was 39. No, I had a chance to retire when I was 55 or 35 years, and I got out because I up until that time, I hadn't made my may, and so I figured another two or three years, it wasn't gonna get there, so I quit.

Tiffany Hunter [00:06:15] I'm gonna go to you, Gladys, because I'm gonna get to you, definitely. Because you actually worked.

Minnie Atkins [00:06:20] Well, I actually worked there.

Elwood Massey [00:06:22] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:06:22] I really don't know a lot, you know. How about you, Gladys?

Tiffany Hunter [00:06:26] How'd you end up in Cleveland?

Gladys Whitney [00:06:28] Born and raised here.

Tiffany Hunter [00:06:29] Born and raised. Right in the Detroit area or did you live here in this area all your life?

Gladys Whitney [00:06:35] All my life.

Minnie Atkins [00:06:36] Wow. Oh, my goodness. You were born here? Oh, wow. I didn't know there's anybody that lost.

Tiffany Hunter [00:06:46] So you definitely have seen the changes morally.

Gladys Whitney [00:06:50] Yeah, yeah.

Tiffany Hunter [00:06:52] So what? I mean, how was it like growing up here as you were here?

Gladys Whitney [00:06:57] Like any big city, you know, we had a good and bad size, but I can remember at our corner there in Detroit, there where Lake Avenue runs into Detroit and that strip right along there was small stores, and you could go up the corner if you wanted to buy a hat. There was a little hat shop. There was a five and ten cent store, barbershop. There was a barber shop. Dry cleaner, coffee, the laundry on the other corner.

Minnie Atkins [00:07:29] And a beauty salon, too. Remember beauty salon my sister used to go to?

Gladys Whitney [00:07:33] That's right. And then there was a A & P for a while. The A & P store, Atlantic and Pacific. There's a big grocery store. In fact, I don't even know if there's any of them around.

Minnie Atkins [00:07:49] I think in maybe some of the southern states.

Gladys Whitney [00:07:52] Yeah. And you could go in there. You didn't have to go to a bakery. They had a home. Not homely, but they had baked goods in there. You could buy a cream puff for $0.05. Those days are gone forever.

Helen Massey [00:08:07] They sure are.

Gladys Whitney [00:08:11] And then, of course, there was cafes or beer joints, as they used to call. There was plenty of them around. That's my life around here. But I was going to say before, I worked also at the National Carbon.

Minnie Atkins [00:08:28] That's the same. That's the very start. So it was National Carbon Company.

Gladys Whitney [00:08:35] National carbon. And then later on it was National Carbon and Carbide. They took over, or they merged with this other company.

Minnie Atkins [00:08:46] And then they changed to Union Carbide.

Elwood Massey [00:08:47] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:08:48] That's the reason why people thought there was a union there. There's no union. There never was.

Elwood Massey [00:08:53] Somebody said there was one at the beginning or so.

Minnie Atkins [00:08:56] It had to be when she worked there, when it was National Carbon way to be.

Gladys Whitney [00:09:00] Then when I worked there, I was going to school and I only worked there on weekends. And that was during the war, and that gave the people that were working there long hours, a couple of days off. So we kind of filled in. And I remember that there was this, like a. Oh, I can't get a clear picture of it, but there was, like a row of girls on this side and one on the other side, like this long table. And this fellow would bring over all of this, like, the equipment for batteries. And one girl would put one thing on, next girl would put something else on, and so on and so that. And they were on this big tray. So when they got to the end of the table there, I had to stand. There was a machine there, and I had to pick this tray up and put it in the machine and step on the lever, and that the thing would come down and push that all together for the battery.

Minnie Atkins [00:10:00] But was it. Was this type of battery feel full of that black pitch? Yes, that was more or less a 160 universal line. And they had two lines there together. One was a 30 universal and the other was a 60 universal. But the one you're talking about also worked on it. You know how you would pick up those. The papers, and put the batteries in your hand and put them down in the box? Yeah, I did that for a while, and then I went around to soldering the wires.

Elwood Massey [00:10:27] Wasn't that mostly during the years of the war?

Minnie Atkins [00:10:30] There was a lot. A lot to making a battery, yeah, yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:10:33] Wasn't that mostly during the years of the war?

Gladys Whitney [00:10:35] It was, yeah, because they got the Navy E award at that time.

Minnie Atkins [00:10:40] Well, what was the last year you worked there?

Gladys Whitney [00:10:42] Oh, it was just during. It was just that one year we worked there to fill in, and it was on Saturdays and Sundays.

Minnie Atkins [00:10:48] Oh, okay.

Gladys Whitney [00:10:49] That my girlfriend and I judge.

Minnie Atkins [00:10:50] But you don't remember what year it was?

Gladys Whitney [00:10:52] Oh, well, let's see. Probably in 40 something.

Minnie Atkins [00:11:02] Oh, that was way before my time, because I didn't go to work there till 1967, so that was way before my time.

Tiffany Hunter [00:11:08] So pretty much.

Gladys Whitney [00:11:09] So it was probably about 43 or something like that.

Tiffany Hunter [00:11:12] 43?

Gladys Whitney [00:11:13] Yeah, something like that.

Tiffany Hunter [00:11:14] So it was like a battery you guys made?

Minnie Atkins [00:11:16] It was batteries.

Tiffany Hunter [00:11:17] Is that what it was, the batteries. And that pretty much kept Cleveland lit up?

Gladys Whitney [00:11:21] Yeah, as a matter of fact, they used that carbide in making the streetlights. Making the streetlights.

Tiffany Hunter [00:11:34] So does it. Did it just consist of battery making, or was there other things in there?

Minnie Atkins [00:11:38] There's a lot to do. To consist of making a battery? Yeah, there's a lot.

Elwood Massey [00:11:43] It mostly probably started as batteries, but then gradually went off into different things, right? No, because I know they used to have flight slides. They used to have.

Minnie Atkins [00:11:56] We got all that stuff from other Union Carbides out of town. We used to get our plastics that we sold, plastic bags, plastic wrap baggies, and all that stuff from Charleston, West Virginia. There's a Union Carbide back in Charleston.

Helen Massey [00:12:09] Oh.

Minnie Atkins [00:12:10] So that's where they would. They would bring it in and then they could sell it to us. We did not make that.

Tiffany Hunter [00:12:15] Oh, I thought it was like a.

Minnie Atkins [00:12:18] What do you call it?

Tiffany Hunter [00:12:19] Distribution or.

Minnie Atkins [00:12:22] No, they just. We got stuff from other factories, you know. We didn't make it there, so.

Tiffany Hunter [00:12:30] So it kind of started somewhere else. They brought it to you guys and.

Minnie Atkins [00:12:35] We made all the batteries. We made all the batteries there.

Tiffany Hunter [00:12:39] Now with the batteries, like, how do you. How do you like carbon? Well, I was kind of reading up on, like, carbon.

Gladys Whitney [00:12:48] I just put it in the machine.

Minnie Atkins [00:12:49] I can think of the name of it.

Tiffany Hunter [00:12:51] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:12:51] Compressed.

Gladys Whitney [00:12:52] Compressed them.

Tiffany Hunter [00:12:53] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:12:54] I can't think of what you call it now. The insides of the battery, so. Oh, goodness. Where's my memory? We made them. The little pieces of the. They were wrapped in paper, but they were like metal strips, and we had a name for them. And we would put them in the machine and it would roll them up and then go on down and go down into the case to the battery. Then it would go on through the lines and have. KOH was one of the names that went in it. KOH.

Gladys Whitney [00:13:33] Lithium. Lithium.

Minnie Atkins [00:13:35] Lithium. And what else was it that went into them? There was a mixture of different things, but I remember them, too, that went into the batteries, and then they go on down to another machine that would put the caps on them. I also worked on the pop top machine. We called it making the tops for the batteries. You know, that little round thing that sticks up on the battery? I made them in there. Yeah.

Tiffany Hunter [00:13:58] So have you lived here all your life or did you?

Minnie Atkins [00:14:01] Oh, no, no. I was a coal miner's daughter back in MacDonald, West Virginia.

Tiffany Hunter [00:14:09] What's that song, guys?

Minnie Atkins [00:14:10] “Coal miner's daughter” by Loretta Lynn.

Helen Massey [00:14:12] Loretta Lynn.

Minnie Atkins [00:14:14] I said she thinks she had a rough. You knew that I was trying to.

Tiffany Hunter [00:14:18] Go, but I knew it cool.

Elwood Massey [00:14:19] Mine was better.

Minnie Atkins [00:14:20] Yeah.

Tiffany Hunter [00:14:20] So how was it like?

Minnie Atkins [00:14:22] How was it like. Well, where I was born at was on Cabin Creek. But then my parents moved us when we were young up into this coal mining camp, because that's where my dad got his job, you know, and there was no running water in the houses. There was a little string hanging down for electric. We did have electric, and there was. If you had a lot of money. You could have yourself made a bathroom. But we didn't have a lot of money, so we had an outhouse. Yes. So these girls don't know what that is.

Elwood Massey [00:14:53] She might. You wouldn't even have no clue to what it was.

Minnie Atkins [00:14:57] I left up at MacDon. I left there when I was twelve or 13. And we moved to St. Albans, West Virginia. Which is 12 miles below Charleston. Charleston. And I finished high school in St. Albans. I graduated from St. Albans High School. And then I got me a little job at the skating rink. And that's how I met my husband while we were skating. And I met him there. And we got married in St. Albans. And then he went into the Marine Corps and was gone for three years. And then he came back and there was no work there for us. So he came to Toledo first. And then he couldn't make it in Toledo. Then he came to Cleveland and he got a job. A couple of little odd jobs. Until he found Lease and Bill Company. And he worked there probably, I think, 34 years. He worked at Lease and Bill Company before he passed away. He passed away early. He was only, like, 53 in a couple months. You know, because his birthday was Christmas day. And he was 53. And then he died April 15. He was really young. In fact, this past 15th of this month, he was dead 19 years. So that left me to take care of everything by myself. And in the meantime, when they announced it that they were closing Union Carbide. That was the day my husband died. I had both whammies together. I was coming home from the hospital after my husband passed away. My neighbor come running out. She says, Minnie, she said, I have to tell you something. And I know that it's not the right time to tell you with all that's happened to Hank and all. But said they announced it on the news today at noon. That Union Carbide was shutting down. Said, watch the 06:00 news. So I watched the 06:00 news. And that's how I found out that my job was leaving me.

Tiffany Hunter [00:16:57] What year was that?

Minnie Atkins [00:16:58] That was in 87.

Tiffany Hunter [00:16:59] And that's when they just.

Minnie Atkins [00:17:01] Well, that's when they announced it. They announced it April 15, 1987. But they were there for a couple years after that. I got to work from April til October 31. Which was how I got to work that long. That year.

Gladys Whitney [00:17:20] Didn't Ralston Purina.

Minnie Atkins [00:17:23] Ralston Purina merged with them? They merged with them to start with.

Gladys Whitney [00:17:28] I thought, geez, what does dog food have to do with.

Minnie Atkins [00:17:33] That's why we all. We all go through the hallway, say, now we know we're going to the dogs when we're. But now Ralston Purina has gotten rid of it. They give it, well, you know, after Union Carbide, they named it Eveready. They named it Eveready. And then after Eveready batteries. Then Ralston Purina come in, but they, you know, there was no changing of the name. There's no Ralston Purina wrote, you know, on anything. And let me see now. How did this go after that? After the Ralston Purina, then they sold it back to Eveready again. They sold the company back to Eveready. And then Eveready has, now it's called Dow Chemical company. Now that's how you get a hold of anything from Union Carbide about it. If you worked at this plant, you have to call Dow Chemical company to be able to talk to anybody about your pension or anything.

Helen Massey [00:18:33] Oh, wow.

Minnie Atkins [00:18:35] See, I got a, I got a check from Ralston Purina for after I left. From there, I guess, 62, I had to quit. You know, they stopped giving it to me at 62. Yeah. But I have a life insurance policy from there, so other than that, there's nothing to do with it. Now if I, if, if I should not get my check each month, then I have to call Dow.

Gladys Whitney [00:18:58] Dow.

Tiffany Hunter [00:18:59] So it's been through a lot.

Minnie Atkins [00:19:00] Yes, it has been through, like, different.

Tiffany Hunter [00:19:02] Companies after company after company.

Minnie Atkins [00:19:04] National Carbon and then, like you said. Yeah, national Carbon and then Carbide Eveready.

Elwood Massey [00:19:11] Well, Union Carbine still.

Minnie Atkins [00:19:14] It still goes by Union Carbine.

Elwood Massey [00:19:16] Right. Cause anytime anything has to be found out or anything about it, Julie has to call [crosstalk] Eveready.

Minnie Atkins [00:19:27] Alright. Eveready.

Tiffany Hunter [00:19:31] That's amazing. So it's like, did they leave because, do you guys know specifically why?

Minnie Atkins [00:19:36] I know why. Or we had to pay off Bhopal, India, when they had that big explosion.

Helen Massey [00:19:42] Explosion?

Minnie Atkins [00:19:42] That big explosion in Bhopal, India, a Union Carbide down there, people lived in tents around the factory, and it exploded and killed mass of people. And what that didn't kill, it burned them. So that took all of our money. They said we have to have the most money making Union Carbide that we have to pay them off. And it was this one.

Helen Massey [00:20:05] It was us.

Gladys Whitney [00:20:06] So they owned that plant then.

Tiffany Hunter [00:20:08] So they had a plant overseas.

Minnie Atkins [00:20:10] It was American owned in India. Yeah. In Bhopal, India. Mm hmm. That's how come we lost our jobs. Now no one would ever tell us that, but it was in the paper.

Gladys Whitney [00:20:21] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:20:21] Right, right.

Tiffany Hunter [00:20:23] Of course they were going to put it in the paper if they, you know, didn't know they were going to put something in there, because you would want to know why, you know, your job is. That's amazing. I didn't know that. Did they tell you anything? Even if it wasn't that, but did they give you some stories?

Minnie Atkins [00:20:39] No, they wouldn't give us no stories. Nobody that worked there, like in the offices, no one would tell us anything. If you ask them, then they didn't want to talk about it. You know, we have no news at this time for you. Maybe if it comes around to where there is something we can tell you, we'll tell you. But see, they were, they had hushed them up from saying anything. Cause of the lawsuits, you know, did.

Tiffany Hunter [00:21:09] You guys ever have a point in time where you went on strikes or had pickets or anything like that? No, nothing like that.

Minnie Atkins [00:21:14] No, not while. Not the 20 years I was there, but I was laid off once.

Elwood Massey [00:21:20] When did they have the union?

Minnie Atkins [00:21:23] I never know of a union ever being.

Elwood Massey [00:21:26] Charlie. Oh, yeah, Charlie said, he said his father organized, help organize.

Minnie Atkins [00:21:31] Well, I know they told us if we talked union, we were out.

Elwood Massey [00:21:34] Right?

Minnie Atkins [00:21:34] They told us that.

Elwood Massey [00:21:36] Yeah, I've heard anybody that tried, they were gone.

Minnie Atkins [00:21:41] Cause Bill come to the.

Elwood Massey [00:21:42] Charlie says his father helped organize and.

Minnie Atkins [00:21:45] He asked me did I know. I'm not gonna call no names. If he had been rumors going around about him gonna start a union. And I told him no, I didn't hear nothing about it. He says, well, just let it go. Just let it go that I even said anything. So I just let it go. But I do know from my manager over there and my boss, I know they told me that if anyone talks union, they will find a way to let go of you.

Helen Massey [00:22:12] Oh, wow.

Tiffany Hunter [00:22:14] What years was this? Was this the entire time you were there or.

Minnie Atkins [00:22:16] The entire time I was there? From. I went to work there in 67 and I worked till 87.

Tiffany Hunter [00:22:25] The entire thing. So I want to get back to more like what you did on the inside or, you know, how what went on is there, like, was it set up in assembly lines in different places? And like, one thing would be done here, you take it somewhere else to get done.

Minnie Atkins [00:22:40] And most mostly they would have the lines that, see, I worked on. The 60 universal line consists of 16 people going down the line, you know, one doing one thing, one another one doing something else, and it would keep on going down until the battery was finished. I had different jobs down there because I was trying to work my way up. In 67, I was only making $5.25 an hour. And when I left there in 87, I was making $13.76. So I raised myself up, you know, from a low rate. And then over the years, you know, I guess they had trouble with economy and all this and that, and so they would give you raises. And they give you raises toward how good you were working, too.

Helen Massey [00:23:26] Oh, yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:23:27] Just felt sorry for.

Minnie Atkins [00:23:28] Maybe they did.

Tiffany Hunter [00:23:31] Was it work ever dangerous in there? Is there a lot of, you know. Chemicals you have to deal with there?

Minnie Atkins [00:23:34] Yes, there was. Yes. Anytime that you worked, even though you had your safety glasses on. My sister lost a knife from the lithium, from the machine, the thing that comes down that puts it into the battery. It broke off, and when it broke off, it squirted under her face.

Helen Massey [00:23:55] Oh, geez.

Minnie Atkins [00:23:56] They had to grab right away and take her up here to the hospital. That's when St. John's was still there instead of a nursing home. But she lost her eye that way, and all she can see is, like, a little vision right here.

Helen Massey [00:24:09] Oh, my goodness.

Minnie Atkins [00:24:10] It's like it tripped from here and over here out of the one eye. But she's got a little light right here on the side.

Helen Massey [00:24:16] Oh, my goodness.

Minnie Atkins [00:24:17] She worked there 24 years.

Gladys Whitney [00:24:19] Wow.

Minnie Atkins [00:24:20] Boy, that's terrible. Yeah.

Tiffany Hunter [00:24:22] And now that. Now that everything's gone, because you live. You guys live right in front of it now. You know what I'm saying? Now that the factory's gone, it's not gonna be there anymore. How do you guys feel about this whole housing development that's going on over here?

Minnie Atkins [00:24:35] I don't like.

Gladys Whitney [00:24:38] The people living in this area.

Tiffany Hunter [00:24:41] Yeah.

Gladys Whitney [00:24:41] Because you never know when they're going to want to take your home.

Minnie Atkins [00:24:44] It's a lot of inconvenience for us. It is.

Gladys Whitney [00:24:47] They're going to have to have parking, and, I mean, they'll probably have restaurants or some shops and so forth around.

Elwood Massey [00:24:54] And they try to tell us there's. The traffic isn't going to be no worse. But you can tell me with thousands of people moving in. But they say they're all coming in from the back way, and I don't believe that one bit, because they're building, extending the street up here. 73rd. 74.

Minnie Atkins [00:25:09] 73rd.

Elwood Massey [00:25:09] Right on through.

Gladys Whitney [00:25:11] They've got to have another.

Minnie Atkins [00:25:12] Well, yeah, they'll be. You mean right here at this opening, right into your street?

Elwood Massey [00:25:17] Right. No, down. Yeah, down at the end of your street, going straight on.

Minnie Atkins [00:25:22] Okay. That's 73rd over there, right? Yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:25:24] And see there? There used to be a street down through there.

Minnie Atkins [00:25:28] There used to be. Now, Father Caruso drive ended right there. There was a dead end at Father Caruso Drive. And then they got the truck route. This was. This was. I don't even remember the year this.

Elwood Massey [00:25:39] Was way I'm talking about right here.

Helen Massey [00:25:41] You're talking about 74th.

Elwood Massey [00:25:43] They're gonna make 74. 74.

Minnie Atkins [00:25:47] They might.

Helen Massey [00:25:48] That's what they're saying.

Elwood Massey [00:25:49] They can't tell me. They're gonna be.

Helen Massey [00:25:51] They bought that little tool shop down there.

Minnie Atkins [00:25:54] Yeah. Well, yeah, that was owned by a different guy.

Helen Massey [00:25:56] They forced him. They forced him out.

Minnie Atkins [00:25:59] And you know that where that big house was? And they tore that house down.

Helen Massey [00:26:03] Yeah, right.

Minnie Atkins [00:26:04] Do you remember the people that used to live in that house?

Helen Massey [00:26:06] The last ones I remember wasn't Ralph Bonacci. [crosstalk]

Minnie Atkins [00:26:11] I'm talking about the one they tore down and made us an extra parking lot because we didn't have enough parking down here. When we sit on the side of it.

Helen Massey [00:26:23] Mm hmm.

Minnie Atkins [00:26:24] Will you make your turn to go up 74th?

Gladys Whitney [00:26:26] Yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:26:26] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:26:27] That was a big house there. Ralph Bonacci owned it. Him and his sister both down there on the top.

Helen Massey [00:26:32] I don't remember, but I remember when they tore the house down.

Gladys Whitney [00:26:35] Do you remember the crows nest they had? Or widow's peak, whatever they call that thing. The iron railings on the very top of the house that went around.

Minnie Atkins [00:26:42] That was a scary house. Yeah, it was.

Gladys Whitney [00:26:44] Yeah. At that time, they could look out and see the boats here.

Minnie Atkins [00:26:49] Well, the reason why I live in this area is because I bought it. Because I went to work at Union Carbide. I was living at 7500 Madison Avenue, renting a house at the time. And I bought this house over here just because.

Elwood Massey [00:27:01] As you know. Now, this isn't a bad neighborhood right here. It's quiet and there's not that much traffic and there's not that many bad people. No, take us out [crosstalk].

Helen Massey [00:27:17] But. But now, when they started all this, we had no say in it whatsoever. Nobody asked us nothing. We had no say in it whatsoever.

Tiffany Hunter [00:27:29] Y'all know what was going on when they were tearing down? You guys just knew they were talking.

Minnie Atkins [00:27:34] We knew from Detroit Shoreway.

Elwood Massey [00:27:36] Yeah, I think it's mostly from a block club. Sort of let us in on what was going on.

Tiffany Hunter [00:27:44] And what club do you guys belong to? What is it?

Helen Massey [00:27:46] West 76.

Elwood Massey [00:27:47] Judy Canelo. You know her?

Helen Massey [00:27:49] You know Judy, Julie.

Gladys Whitney [00:27:50] All people in this area, neighborhood, each. Each section, each different streets have their own, you know, block clubs.

Tiffany Hunter [00:27:58] Oh, I didn't know.

Gladys Whitney [00:27:59] They had their meetings on different days during the month.

Tiffany Hunter [00:28:02] And you get together and kind of what see had to make the neighborhood better, right?

Elwood Massey [00:28:07] Talk about.

Minnie Atkins [00:28:08] Well, you know, I never did attend one. I'm sorry that I never did. [crosstalk]

Elwood Massey [00:28:13] You.

Minnie Atkins [00:28:16] Used to live in the neighborhood, and he moved back in Bill Rock's house. He has tried to get me to go.

Helen Massey [00:28:23] He's a nice kid. I like him.

Minnie Atkins [00:28:26] He.

Helen Massey [00:28:26] He gets. Has some good ideas and everything too. Yeah, but you gotta go because Julie gets things done. And she'll help you get your sidewalks. They ought to be responsible for it. [crosstalk]

Minnie Atkins [00:28:44] Not from this, okay. But from work that's going on. See, straight across from the street from me is a house that had mold from top to bottom. And the people had moved out. The guy quit paying the house payment. The woman got to live there for about six months because until they, you know, she moved. Before they even mentioned putting her out, she moved. Anyway, they sold it very, very cheap to this guy that I don't know him, but he seems to have plenty of money, you know, so. And I don't know what his purpose is because I haven't talked to him. I know he drives a Hummer. So anybody who drives a Hummer's got some money.

Helen Massey [00:29:26] You better believe it.

Minnie Atkins [00:29:27] Anyway, they're doing really good. [crosstalk] I don't need him. Anyway, they were doing the work on the house. And they were putting the dumpsters in the back of the house. And he come. I heard this loud noise and I got jumped up and run to the dining room windows, the window looking out. Here was the headlights of his cab to that dumpster in my hedges. Just sitting right there in my hedges.

Helen Massey [00:29:54] Oh, God.

Minnie Atkins [00:29:54] I run out that door. And then I realized I didn't have no shoes or no coat on. It was cold, you know. So I went back and I grabbed him and I ran out that door. He's. Oh, he apologized and everything and going on. And he has no other way to get the dumpster in there. So I even told him. I said, you know what? I'm not even a driver, but I know that you could go down this street at the end of my house and go in diagonally, right like that. Put it in. I said, they could probably throw their stuff out right into the dumpster from the window. I said, instead of you parking it the way you're parking it. So after he moved, he was watching me. He cracked my sidewalk. So he stopped the cab. He got out and he come over to me. He said, is everything okay? I said, no, it's not. I said, you broke my sidewalk. I said, these are fairly new sidewalks here. I said, in the last, what, ten years? Something like that. And I said, and this crack, as many times as I get out here sweeping and cleaning and hosing down, I said, I would know that that crack was there. And you could tell that it was fresh because an old crack has dirt all in it. And this one was just brand new. And he could tell that it was new. Well, he apologized to me and says the name of the company is Pete and Pete and I got his number at my house, because if they try to make me pay for that sidewalk, I'm calling him.

Helen Massey [00:31:12] I don't blame you.

Minnie Atkins [00:31:13] I am calling him.

Elwood Massey [00:31:14] Man, this all fits right in with Union Carbide.

Minnie Atkins [00:31:17] No, no, it has nothing to do with Union Carbide. She just told me I could talk to her about my sidewalks.

Helen Massey [00:31:24] Yeah, Julie gets things done.

Minnie Atkins [00:31:26] Yeah, she gets real.

Helen Massey [00:31:28] I told her, Julie Candela, she's the.

Elwood Massey [00:31:31] Block club leader, and she knows the right people to get a hold of.

Gladys Whitney [00:31:37] To do it too.

Helen Massey [00:31:38] She gets things done. She really does.

Gladys Whitney [00:31:41] City government.

Helen Massey [00:31:42] Mm hmm.

Tiffany Hunter [00:31:43] What street exactly do you live on? Do you live on 73rd?

Minnie Atkins [00:31:46] I live on 74th. I live right on the corner. It's 7317 Herman.

Tiffany Hunter [00:31:51] And which. Where do you live?

Gladys Whitney [00:31:54] 7508 Herman. In fact, my house is probably right behind her house here.

Helen Massey [00:32:00] Yeah, on the next street. Right. It is.

Gladys Whitney [00:32:02] She has a big yard. And then there's my place, my backyard. It's not mine. I don't own it.

Elwood Massey [00:32:09] So now you're not gonna ask me where I live.

Helen Massey [00:32:15] You want some more coffee Tiffany?

Elwood Massey [00:32:16] Put her dinner on.

Tiffany Hunter [00:32:21] You know, I have to be in here.

Elwood Massey [00:32:23] You know?

Tiffany Hunter [00:32:24] So pretty much when the Union Carbide was gone and they started doing this new development, you guys just really don't think it's good. Gonna benefit the neighborhood.

Elwood Massey [00:32:34] But, you know, like, what is it?

Tiffany Hunter [00:32:37] Battery Park is what they're calling.

Elwood Massey [00:32:39] Yeah, but, you know. But, you know, as you went to the block club, you realize that Union Carbide wanted to do things the right way for the people in the area. They didn't want to go just completely opposite from what you are. You know, they want to more or less fill in like they think they thought the people wanted. And they. And they listened to what people said, you know, and made this decision from there.

Minnie Atkins [00:33:13] Well, it sat there for a few years before they even started on it.

Gladys Whitney [00:33:16] Yeah, it's been.

Minnie Atkins [00:33:18] It's been shut down since. Well, I left there in 87.

Tiffany Hunter [00:33:23] So you left there in 87. Now, the Eveready came in after that, right?

Minnie Atkins [00:33:29] No, no. Eveready. We were called Eveready when I worked.

Tiffany Hunter [00:33:32] Oh, you were called Eveready.

Minnie Atkins [00:33:33] Yeah, they changed it while I was working there.

Elwood Massey [00:33:36] Well, you know, another one good thing about that. That building that my son, when he was six, seven, eight years old, you know, he walked down through the tennis courts down Buckley, down in there. They were down. Had to go down railway tracks. So these girls talked him into going one day with him, and he went down and he started playing, and he fell in love with. And every day he would play, he would go by this building. It has a great appeal. You know, and he would stand there for hours hitting a tennis ball against the building because he didn't have nobody to play with. And he turns out pretty good. He got a scholarship at Ohio State, and he played pro a couple years, and now he's in Florida teaching tennis. So he's done pretty good. That building done helped do it.

Minnie Atkins [00:34:28] Well, I do know that. Well, the Union Carbide was still there. The whole building. Our neighborhood was warmer.

Elwood Massey [00:34:36] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:34:38] Because after the first year, they tore it down. I, like, froze.

Elwood Massey [00:34:44] Off of their legs.

Helen Massey [00:34:45] Made a difference.

Minnie Atkins [00:34:48] So with them rebuilding right now, the only benefit that I'm going to have is probably my house will be warmer.

Helen Massey [00:34:56] But I really think they should let us have a say.

Minnie Atkins [00:34:59] I think they should be when they're going to turn the water off and stuff. My neighbor, she was getting ready to go to the doctor. She was in the shower, all soaked down, hair and all. And they turned the water off on her.

Elwood Massey [00:35:11] No, I think what happened there, because I got on the phone and called Matt Zone, and I was mad because.

Minnie Atkins [00:35:19] I called a water company and I was mad.

Elwood Massey [00:35:21] Yeah, but they. What they. What happened is they accidentally broke the line up there.

Minnie Atkins [00:35:26] You think that's what happened?

Elwood Massey [00:35:27] I know it is.

Minnie Atkins [00:35:28] I seen the guys going up the street and turning it off with this big, long tool because I. Right after that, my water was gone.

Helen Massey [00:35:34] Yeah, yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:35:35] They turned it off in front of my house, and they had to turn.

Elwood Massey [00:35:38] It off to repair the breakage. He's down in here.

Minnie Atkins [00:35:41] I still had water till then. Well, they should figure out.

Elwood Massey [00:35:44] Yeah, well, but you didn't have as much pressure.

Minnie Atkins [00:35:47] Oh, no. My pressure was going down for a while before it.

Elwood Massey [00:35:52] Because I called Matt Zone I was raising Cane. I was mad.

Helen Massey [00:35:53] We'd been out somewhere and come home, and I started to do stuff.

Elwood Massey [00:35:58] Cause I know just days before that, they said they would let us know before they turn water off. So you prepare for different things.

Minnie Atkins [00:36:07] And then they come over there on my street, on my corner and open that fire hydrant and left it going and washed all of their tools off, their shovels and everything they was working with down there. The day it was damp and they all got muddy and left mud everywhere.

Helen Massey [00:36:21] Oh, gosh.

Minnie Atkins [00:36:24] You know, it's inconvenient to us until they get it done.

Helen Massey [00:36:28] Yeah, it is.

Minnie Atkins [00:36:28] And you don't get no sleep. They start, like, sometimes 07:00.

Helen Massey [00:36:31] 07:00 they start. I know they do.

Minnie Atkins [00:36:34] And we're retired. We don't get up 07:00 in the morning, you know, we stay up late, watch the tv. Cause, well, we gotta get up for.

Helen Massey [00:36:39] That's right.

Minnie Atkins [00:36:40] And then when it comes time, you know, before you.

Elwood Massey [00:36:44] Well, what they want to get is. Get in bed at night.

Minnie Atkins [00:36:46] Right. I can be in the bed after I'm gone.

Helen Massey [00:36:49] That's right. That's what retirement's about.

Minnie Atkins [00:36:52] That's what retirement's about.

Gladys Whitney [00:36:53] What's the name of the brothers?

Helen Massey [00:36:54] What you want when you want.

Minnie Atkins [00:37:00] Brothers? Yeah. That's the name of the company that's behind you.

Tiffany Hunter [00:37:03] So what is it like, town? Town homes, you guys know, condominiums or. What type is it?

Minnie Atkins [00:37:08] They told us different things, all different. At one time, I heard that there was going to be a playground, there was going to be a nursery for the kids. And that's, you know, that's what they're talking.

Helen Massey [00:37:21] Yeah. I heard there was a little restaurant.

Elwood Massey [00:37:23] They said, you know, the smokestack. I hear they're going to make a pizza, isn't it?

Minnie Atkins [00:37:31] No.

Elwood Massey [00:37:31] What do you call them things that you get on and go up and.

Minnie Atkins [00:37:34] Sight seaside, like the Empire State power.

Tiffany Hunter [00:37:37] Like, go up and see over Cleveland or something.

Elwood Massey [00:37:41] And then I heard there's a put a restaurant in there. It is gonna put a childcare unit in there. Swimming pool in there.

Minnie Atkins [00:37:51] So many different rumors that you really don't know until you. They get done.

Helen Massey [00:37:55] Mm hmm.

Tiffany Hunter [00:37:55] You know where the smokestack was? It's gonna, like a community center, right?

Elwood Massey [00:38:02] Yeah, that more or less probably what it'll be, yeah.

Tiffany Hunter [00:38:05] And, you know, for the kids and stuff. I don't know. You know, it's weird because they're gonna be building it. So, like, I was talking to you, it's like, who's gonna be coming in? You know, you know, single families or just, you know, single people.

Minnie Atkins [00:38:19] Right.

Elwood Massey [00:38:20] All the people that's gonna be living over there.

Minnie Atkins [00:38:23] Yeah. [crosstalk]

Elwood Massey [00:38:23] Hundreds of. [crosstalk]

Gladys Whitney [00:38:27] Money. Don't. [crosstalk]

Minnie Atkins [00:38:28] Yeah. We even heard this loud noise one night as I was working second shift. At the time. And we went to the window, and it was a guy down by where you go into underground passage to go down to the lake. It was a guy dumping a body down there.

Helen Massey [00:38:43] Oh, my gosh.

Minnie Atkins [00:38:46] I guess this couple had been in a bar and they had got to arguing about something, and she grabbed his $20 bill and swallowed it. And he got out of it because he told him that's what happened. And they cut her stomach open in the morning and they found those $20 bills.

Helen Massey [00:39:02] Oh, my gosh.

Minnie Atkins [00:39:03] And you were working. And we were working. We were watching. We were looking down at it.

Tiffany Hunter [00:39:08] So. In that. In the tunnel, too, because I drove right here. Yeah. What is. What did that. You said, what is that.

Gladys Whitney [00:39:20] [crosstalk] That leads right onto the beach. What they wanted to do was close that tunnel. We put up a stink about it.

Minnie Atkins [00:39:27] Yes, we did. And petitions everywhere, all of us.

Elwood Massey [00:39:30] That’s Matt Zone. He wanted to close it because it took $15 or $20 a month to clean it.

Minnie Atkins [00:39:35] Yeah. And plus the kids in the neighborhood, you know, writing stuff in there.

Elwood Massey [00:39:40] A lot of people will walk. Just go down there and go swimming. So you come right back and that's it. Then it used to be on July 4 when they had fireworks down there. Thousands of people.

Tiffany Hunter [00:40:00] When I came actually to look at the site over here, and it kind of spooked me out because I was.

Minnie Atkins [00:40:05] Like, what is that thing? [crosstalk]

Tiffany Hunter [00:40:06] You know? So that's neat. [crosstalk]

Helen Massey [00:40:07] So it's like. [crosstalk]

Elwood Massey [00:40:19] They have a trouble keeping them because the kids break them, breaking them out.

Gladys Whitney [00:40:23] But then they put wire covers over.

Minnie Atkins [00:40:25] I was down. I went through there just last year, you know, when they had that Indian festival going on.

Helen Massey [00:40:31] Oh, yeah, yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:40:34] We walked down there just to look around. They had, you know.

Gladys Whitney [00:40:38] The funny part of it, it is these people that are paying, what, $400,000 for these homes and that they're living, now going to be living here. If they want to go down to the Edgewater there, they would use the tunnel, too.

Minnie Atkins [00:40:51] So why, why close it when it's going to be booming down here?

Helen Massey [00:40:54] Yeah, right, right.

Tiffany Hunter [00:40:57] So was all of those.

Gladys Whitney [00:40:58] So they changed their mind on that. They're going to keep it open, last we heard.

Minnie Atkins [00:41:02] Yeah, that's the last I heard, too.

Tiffany Hunter [00:41:03] I would keep it open, too. It seems like, you know, that's neat.

Helen Massey [00:41:07] You know, we got a lot. [crosstalk]

Elwood Massey [00:41:12] It used to be when the kids were growing up, you know, 6,7,8,9. We lived down the street there, and they had about six different ball fields down at Edgewater. At nights, you could see the lights. And I'd take kids and walk down and go down through the tunnel everywhere and watch a baseball game.

Gladys Whitney [00:41:34] Another thing they had at Edgewater, in the wintertime, they'd cover, put water in where those baseball diamonds were, and we just ice skating on there.

Elwood Massey [00:41:43] Then they used to have a big. What do you call it? Bathhouse or something.

Gladys Whitney [00:41:50] Yeah. They had a bathhouse, and at one time, they had a dance hall, I heard. Yeah, down there.

Elwood Massey [00:41:54] They say at one time it was really nice, but people like Matt Zone come along and want to get rid of all this stuff. Same way with, like, the ball fields and that. They got rid of them. Now they wonder, why is this kid out here on the street throwing rocks at windows because he can't play ball.

Minnie Atkins [00:42:14] There's no more ball fields, no nothing.

Gladys Whitney [00:42:16] With parking lot. They can fly kites down there.

Minnie Atkins [00:42:20] They still have a concession stand, though, where you buy hot dogs. They do chips and stuff like that.

Gladys Whitney [00:42:25] And there's still the swings in that.

Elwood Massey [00:42:30] The beach isn't bad. In the summertime when they keep it clean, it's not bad. It's not a bad beach.

Minnie Atkins [00:42:37] It used to be every year. Every summer when my son Steve would go swimming down there, he'd get an earache. Every year, I'd have to take that kid to the doctor with an earache when he was little.

Gladys Whitney [00:42:47] Water in his eardrum.

Minnie Atkins [00:42:48] Yeah. Get it in his eardrum. And then I guess he didn't get rid of it, so it would get in the back.

Helen Massey [00:42:53] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:42:54] But we had some good times in this neighborhood.

Helen Massey [00:42:57] Oh, yeah, we have.

Gladys Whitney [00:42:58] Yeah.

Tiffany Hunter [00:42:59] You saying we have? You're using it as past tense.

Minnie Atkins [00:43:01] You can still have a good time, because I feel that they're gonna take it all away from us.

Tiffany Hunter [00:43:06] That's how you feel.

Minnie Atkins [00:43:07] Plus, we're old now. We're not young.

Elwood Massey [00:43:10] Who's old?

Gladys Whitney [00:43:12] Oh, pardon us.

Minnie Atkins [00:43:17] We are. We're getting older.

Helen Massey [00:43:19] We have to face reality, don't we?

Minnie Atkins [00:43:23] Because I was happier at the time when I was going to Union Carbide to work, even though I worked 13 years for Grinnell, I. Still yet. My thoughts are on Union Carbide, with the years that I spent there and all the people I knew definitely affected by that. Oh, yes.

Gladys Whitney [00:43:45] Well, uncertainty. See, you don't know what they're going to do as far as people's homes and that here, the streets and so forth. Are they going to take this street out here sooner or later? Are they going to take the next street where I live on Herman? And then there's another street after that called Rutledge. And then there's Lake Avenue running into Detroit there.

Elwood Massey [00:44:08] You know, you look at that building, as big as it was, and thousands of people work there, you know.

Gladys Whitney [00:44:14] Yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:44:15] You wonder, where are they now?

Minnie Atkins [00:44:17] Well, you know, I have pretty good sized family working there.

Elwood Massey [00:44:20] There's only so many jobs.

Minnie Atkins [00:44:25] There was me, my two sisters, my sister's husbands, both of them, and then my one brother in law's aunt and uncle worked there. My brother worked there, and his wife Connor worked there. Now, that's. That's nine people. Well, didn't you? Yeah, Mel worked. Wow. They hired families. [crosstalk] It's really strange how I got my job. I had got my last daughter, I had got her in school, and I was so bored, I'd have the housework done in 2 hours, and I had the rest of the day till she got out of school. So I wanted to go to work. And my husband told me, you know, you don't have to work, you know, just enjoy the kids being in school, you know. I said, well, one morning, I didn't let him know that I did it. I called Union Carbide and the lady that answered the phone, I told her, I said, you don't know me. Now, this is really weird. I said, you don't know me, but my sister Jewel Smith, and Brenda Handy, I said, my two sisters work there, and I just want to know if you need anyone else, if you're going to do any hiring. She said, well, right now, she said, at the present time, she says, we're not doing any hiring, but I'll keep you in mind. She didn't ask me my name, my telephone number or anything. So we hung up. So about 01:00 in the afternoon, my brother in law was calling me. Frank. He said, Minnie. He said, did you call here for a job? I said, yes, I did. He said, I was out on a route, you know, because he drove a truck from there. He said, I was out on a route, and I got this call to come to the office. He said, I thought I'd done something wrong. He said, as soon as I walked in, he says, hey, Tom, he says, what do you need me for? And he says, do you have a sister in law named Minnie? And he says, yeah. And he says, well, is she looking for a job? He says, I don't know. Says, well, he says, we just got word of that up on the third floor, they need another girl. And said, we thought of her because of the whole family, you know, working here. So Frank got on the phone and he told me, he said, call her at 01:00 she will be back from lunch at 01:00. You call her. They had me in that evening before my kids even got out of school, taking this test this pegboard test, putting parts in, you know, to how fast you are at doing it. And had me in there. And the manager of the company, he came walking in to him, looked down at me, and he says, mm hmm. And I said, what? What did I do? He said, I just wanted to see what Brenda and Jewell's sister looked like. And he said, and by the way, you can't wear them tennis shoes in here. I said, oh, okay. And I thought to myself, well, this means I might get hard, you know. I went to work the next morning at 07:00. Now, that's how I got my job at Union Carbide. And then after that, I had to walk from 75th and Madison to get here every morning. And at the time, my brother worked there, too, and he lived way down on Madison. But I would walk down and get him, and then we would come back and walk down here. But I said, no, this is not going to work. I said, my money is going to go in the bank. I said, I'm going to buy me a house. That's all there is to it. So I didn't know it was going to be here. We just went to Russell Realty, and they took us down 67th and showed us a house. I wouldn't have bought that house if it gave it to me. I wouldn't have accepted it. So I just complained out and asked the guy, I said, do you possibly have any houses in or around Union Carbide? He said, well, we do, but it's a little more money. The payment will be a little higher. Cause he had done talk to my husband about the cash range. You know, what he would pay and everything. So he said, let's go back to the office. So we went back to the office, and he was showing us pictures of it and everything. I said, now, where is this at? He said, it's on the corner on Herman Avenue. I said, is that near Union Carbide? Cause I had walked down here, but I never paid no attention to the names of the streets or anything. I just knew where Union Carbide was. So he says, well, let me take you there. It was starting to get dark. That's dark. I crawled out of that car and seen all of them hedges going around that house. And then we went in the side door, and I went up and seen a bathroom. You could turn around in it without running into somebody, you know, in a big bathroom. I got a big bathroom. And I said, no, I want this house. I don't care what the rest of it looks like. I want it. I said, I like my space in the bathroom.

Helen Massey [00:48:51] She's got a nice house, too.

Minnie Atkins [00:48:53] Well, it's nice yard. I’d love some work done on it, but.

Helen Massey [00:48:57] Well, ours does, too. I love the hedges. I love that.

Minnie Atkins [00:49:01] Yeah, they're starting to bloom right now, too. They're looking so green.

Helen Massey [00:49:04] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:49:05] So pretty.

Tiffany Hunter [00:49:06] And a little. Another little comment. You had mentioned something about the Dow Chemical, and you said that after the Eveready, it turned it.

Minnie Atkins [00:49:15] They sent me paper. You know, I never thought about that. I should have found that paper and brought it over here today. Well, if you have any more meetings about it, about Union Carbide, I will see what I can get up. That's in writing. They sent me a letter telling me that Ralston Purina no longer had anything to do with the company, that it went to Eveready, back to Eveready, where it originally come from. And then I got a letter from Eveready telling me that they merged with Dow so that my checks would change.

Tiffany Hunter [00:49:47] And where's the. Where's the Dow Chemical? You don't know? Really?

Minnie Atkins [00:49:51] I don't know where it is. All I know is I've got a letter that states it, and I put it away for, you know, if I might need some.

Helen Massey [00:50:00] Right, right.

Elwood Massey [00:50:01] As long as they don't send you no money, you're all right.

Minnie Atkins [00:50:04] Hey, they better send my money.

Tiffany Hunter [00:50:08] Well, guys, if there's one thing you guys keep the same about, you know, your neighborhood is this area. What would it be if you could keep it right now as it is?

Minnie Atkins [00:50:19] What do you mean, as it is?

Tiffany Hunter [00:50:20] You know, what would you.

Elwood Massey [00:50:24] What they were supposed to have done is blend in these front row of houses with us with the ones that are already in the neighborhood. And now they're not that from look down there. No, they're not in the street lights, lighting system of the streetlights supposed to be all the same, which they probably won't be the same as these old things.

Minnie Atkins [00:50:49] I think them houses they’re building are ugly.

Elwood Massey [00:50:51] I don't like them from my house.

Minnie Atkins [00:50:53] The way when I look down, I wouldn't buy a house like that. I bought and paid for my house in this. I don't want a solid, and I don't want to move. I want to die there. You know.

Gladys Whitney [00:51:07] You're talking about that big model one that they've got.

Minnie Atkins [00:51:09] The one that they're building over here. Yeah, yeah, I don't. I don't like.

Gladys Whitney [00:51:14] No, it just looks.

Minnie Atkins [00:51:14] Looks.

Gladys Whitney [00:51:15] I wouldn't pay that kind of money for it.

Minnie Atkins [00:51:17] No.

Helen Massey [00:51:18] Well, didn't they say in our last meeting the two on the corner sold already? I thought they did. Yeah, they're sold already.

Elwood Massey [00:51:36] She got earphones on when she's [inaudible]. The sound coming in, those earphones.

Tiffany Hunter [00:51:42] Any last comments you guys would like to make? You know, for the record, I guess just about your neighborhood. Anything from the past, any good memories, anything, you know, just the last words type thing?

Helen Massey [00:51:56] Well, we like our neighborhood. We've been here all those years, and we have no intentions of going anywhere. We like it.

Minnie Atkins [00:52:03] And before the kids all grew up, we had a nice, you know, atmosphere through this neighborhood, because all the kids knew one another, like Darrell, her son, Mel, and Mike. In fact, they're still good friends.

Helen Massey [00:52:17] They are. I know they are. Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:52:19] Cause Darrell called me and he said, you know, I lost Mike's phone number, or either he changed it. I says, well, he's got a cell phone number now. I'll give it to you. Yeah, he got with him that very same day. But when I. Like I said, when all our kids were little, it. It was really a nice atmosphere through here, and we weren't worried about anything. We could go to bed at night.

Helen Massey [00:52:40] Or leave your doors open at that time.

Minnie Atkins [00:52:42] But now we can't. There are so many different people living in a neighborhood that you don't know what they might do.

Helen Massey [00:52:48] You know, there's too many people moving in and out around here now.

Minnie Atkins [00:52:52] You know, there's too many people buying and using it for a rental property. That's exactly what it is right there. Our homeowners are good rental.

Elwood Massey [00:53:00] Rental people could care less.

Minnie Atkins [00:53:02] They don't care. That's the reason why the house across the street from me got in the shape it was in was from rental people.

Elwood Massey [00:53:07] Yeah.

Gladys Whitney [00:53:09] Do you think, though, that even if you're living in it, you want to live?

Helen Massey [00:53:14] You still treat it like it was yours, right?

Elwood Massey [00:53:17] Like it was your people just moving in right over here. They're coming out there and digging. I don't know what they're doing to the yard. Digging, throwing a dirt and grass stuff all over the place. You know, old wooden pallets laying around everywhere, garbage sitting around. Throw their baby diapers over in our property. Baby.

Minnie Atkins [00:53:42] I picked up all kinds of stuff out of my yard. You wouldn't believe what I.

Elwood Massey [00:53:45] When I see that landlord, I'm going to really let him have it now I'll tell you.

Minnie Atkins [00:53:47] There was a bag in my front yard one day, and I went out there to see what was in the bag. There was an outfit for like a stripper or something, and it's red leather. It was in my yard.

Helen Massey [00:54:02] Oh.

Minnie Atkins [00:54:03] I said, no. Where did this come from? I have gotten empty bottles of whiskey, beer cans, all kinds of stuff. Because they'll be walking by and they'll finish it, have it in a bag and. No, they don't throw it. They stick it in the hedges.

Elwood Massey [00:54:16] Well, maybe that's what happened to the outfits.

Helen Massey [00:54:21] I gotta say.

Gladys Whitney [00:54:22] That's where you threw it, right?

Elwood Massey [00:54:24] That's what I did.

Minnie Atkins [00:54:25] This was brand new in a package. Never opened.

Helen Massey [00:54:28] Wow.

Minnie Atkins [00:54:28] Never opened.

Helen Massey [00:54:30] My goodness.

Gladys Whitney [00:54:31] That was supposed to be for somebody, huh?

Minnie Atkins [00:54:33] Wasn't for me.

Elwood Massey [00:54:35] Yeah, maybe that's what they meant for you.

Minnie Atkins [00:54:38] Now, years ago, I might have handled that, but not today.

Helen Massey [00:54:44] You don't want any tipping? No, no. Okay, sure.

Elwood Massey [00:54:47] Don't enter. Take some more.

Minnie Atkins [00:54:51] Years ago, I used to have this neighbor in this neighborhood when I was really young. His wife was gonna leave him if he didn't quit looking at me when I was outside.

Elwood Massey [00:55:05] Then there was trouble, huh? And she left him?

Minnie Atkins [00:55:10] No, I don't think she did. They moved away. Oh, they were just renting.

Helen Massey [00:55:16] You want a piece of this, Minnie?

Minnie Atkins [00:55:18] Maybe one that's not chocolate. I'm allergic to chocolate.

Helen Massey [00:55:21] Oh, are you?

Minnie Atkins [00:55:22] Yeah.

Tiffany Hunter [00:55:24] So you guys are the ones that pretty much in the neighborhood and been here for years, you own your own houses and, you know, and, you know, and everybody else is pretty much coming in and coming out. They're not the homeowner. You guys are pretty much the original.

Helen Massey [00:55:38] Yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:55:38] Like, she, you know, used to be everybody on the street owned their own home, you know, and lived there. And it was so nice lines and everything were kept so neat and all that. Then they started, like she said, moving out or passing away.

Minnie Atkins [00:55:54] Yeah, passed away, yeah. Like the twins over here, their mother and father, they're both gone. Oh, yeah, Bill Rock, his parents are gone.

Helen Massey [00:56:07] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:56:07] Like, what's the other family over there? That their parents died. Both of them are dead now, Pat.

Helen Massey [00:56:17] Oh, yeah, father.

Elwood Massey [00:56:20] Both are gone.

Helen Massey [00:56:22] You're gonna have some.

Minnie Atkins [00:56:24] Why not? When my husband passed away, I got out of everyone that was. Listen up. At this funeral home, and a lot of the people's names that are in that book are gone now because.

Helen Massey [00:56:37] Oh, yeah, yeah. Lettuce.

Minnie Atkins [00:56:40] We've got.

Gladys Whitney [00:56:43] Like, I remember when I was a kid, all of the houses on our street were all very, very nice. And everybody kept their lawns up, planted flowers, and the kids running around playing. But they, you know, seemed like everything was still fine as far as [crosstalk] flowers. And no kids do today.

Helen Massey [00:57:01] That's right.

Gladys Whitney [00:57:02] That's true. Get out in the street, play ball. You know, baseball.

Minnie Atkins [00:57:08] Yeah. Remember when the kids were all out in the section there?

Gladys Whitney [00:57:11] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:57:12] Playing ball. And they busted out a window. When the miners live on the corner before them people bought that house and tore it up.

Helen Massey [00:57:19] What? I said Mister Miner would turn over in his grave.

Minnie Atkins [00:57:22] Mister Miner. See that house right now, he took.

Helen Massey [00:57:25] Such good care of that, and that lady has destroyed it.

Elwood Massey [00:57:29] You know, another first.

Minnie Atkins [00:57:29] You tore all aluminum siding off from it.

Elwood Massey [00:57:31] The kids used to do is they had to. It wasn't fenced in yet.

Minnie Atkins [00:57:37] Yeah.

Elwood Massey [00:57:37] The kids would go over there and play ball. Baseball and that. And try to hit it over that building and all that. They'd break windows out and everything. Those new type, you know.

Minnie Atkins [00:57:49] I went running over, you know. Oh, my God. My kids broke out your window. And they said, they're kids. Let them play. They're kids.

Helen Massey [00:57:57] I said, I'll get a fix.

Minnie Atkins [00:57:59] I remember today it cost me $16. Oh, really?

Elwood Massey [00:58:06] But at least the kids had something to do, you know?

Gladys Whitney [00:58:08] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:09] Well, a lot of. The lot of the neighborhood work there.

Tiffany Hunter [00:58:14] The surrounding neighborhood.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:15] Worked at the Union.

Tiffany Hunter [00:58:17] Very convenient then.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:18] Yeah, that was quite a few. Okay. Joanne Browning. She lives up on 73rd there. Up toward Detroit.

Helen Massey [00:58:27] Mm hmm.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:27] She lives just a couple of houses from where the Zone family used to live.

Helen Massey [00:58:33] Oh, okay.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:33] Down in there. Anyway, she worked there. Her husband worked there then on this last house. Right before the parking lot.

Helen Massey [00:58:42] Mm hmm.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:43] Janice was her name. She worked there. And then me and Bill Rock.

Helen Massey [00:58:50] And then Eely.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:51] And then Eely.

Elwood Massey [00:58:52] Who is Bill Rock?

Helen Massey [00:58:54] Ricky rocks brother.

Minnie Atkins [00:58:55] Ricky Rock's brother.

Elwood Massey [00:58:56] Ricky Rock's not that old.

Helen Massey [00:58:58] Ricky Rock's brother. This is Ricky Rock's brother.

Elwood Massey [00:59:00] How much older is he than Ricky?

Minnie Atkins [00:59:02] Bill? He's retired. He just retired a couple years ago. So he's probably in his early sixties. His wife died a couple of years ago.

Helen Massey [00:59:09] Did she remember?

Minnie Atkins [00:59:11] Don't.

Helen Massey [00:59:12] No, I don't. No, no.

Minnie Atkins [00:59:15] Now she passed away. And then he just kept the house there by himself. And in one of the little apartments off to the side. That's where Terry.

Helen Massey [00:59:25] Terry. Yeah. Yeah. Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [00:59:28] And then the Miners. Mrs. Miner worked there, too, at Union Carbide.

Helen Massey [00:59:33] Oh, did she? And when he died, she moved to North Olmsted or somewhere, didn't you?

Minnie Atkins [00:59:40] I don't recall where she moved to.

Elwood Massey [00:59:42] Look at the watch. We could be here all day.

Helen Massey [00:59:45] But I know they made a mess out of that house.

Minnie Atkins [00:59:48] Yes.

Tiffany Hunter [00:59:50] Well, I'm [inaudible] another interview, but I just want to say it was. It was just really an honor for you to allow us in your home and for you guys to come and share, you know, what you guys know about this particular area, especially the Union Carbide, which is, you know, been through many changes.

Minnie Atkins [01:00:10] Well, I appreciate you being interested.

Tiffany Hunter [01:00:12] Oh, definitely.

Minnie Atkins [01:00:12] Yeah, definitely.

Elwood Massey [01:00:13] Yeah. I enjoyed it, too, because I don't very seldom, I mean, I very seldom ever have anybody to aggravate, you know. I’ve got two of you. [crosstalk]

Gladys Whitney [01:00:24] I can still see the. I can still see the girls going out for lunch and wearing those green smocks that they had to wear. And so many of them had black, that carbon on them.

Minnie Atkins [01:00:35] You know, we would get really dirty in there. Yeah, there was. I never worked in that place, but they had a name for it. But since I never worked there, that's probably the reason why that I can't remember it. But if you worked in there, when you come out, you just was covered.

Elwood Massey [01:00:56] You know, they. They were supposed to decontaminate that building, you know, and they can't tell me they're going to go in there and get all of that contamination out of that concrete and wood and stuff like that. Half of it's probably still in the ground over there.

Minnie Atkins [01:01:17] Probably some. But I had this guy to come to my house and want to take a sample of my lawn, of the dirt so they could match it up with what's down at Union Carbide to see how much pollution is down there, then at my house. Never heard the outcome of it.

Elwood Massey [01:01:36] No, you won't either. This is just like that Coit Road auto plant out on Coit Road, the Chevy plant. They tore that sucker down, and it was for years before they ever got rid of pollution from just building cars. This thing had nickel cadmium and everything else.

Minnie Atkins [01:01:56] It had all kind of stuff.

Elwood Massey [01:01:58] I know it.

Helen Massey [01:02:00] I wonder if it's gonna be safe.

Elwood Massey [01:02:02] For those people off for a few years unless stuff starts coming out like it does a lot of other places around.

Minnie Atkins [01:02:08] Well, I tell you what I seen. You know, that goat went by my house? They've been taking some dirt away and bringing some new dirt in. [crosstalk] I've seen it go right by my house because they'll put a layer over top of it. Yeah.

Helen Massey [01:02:23] Wow.

Elwood Massey [01:02:23] And somebody told me at this parking lot right here where it was a parking lot, said they used to dump chemicals and everything in there in the basement? [crosstalk]

Minnie Atkins [01:02:33] In the basement of Union Carbide. I do know that they did put some stuff under the ground.

Helen Massey [01:02:39] Oh, wow. And somebody's gonna be living on top of that. My goodness.

Minnie Atkins [01:02:46] Ain't gonna be me.

Elwood Massey [01:02:47] Maybe they can get a high out of it or something. Wouldn’t that be neat? Wouldn't that be neat to live in.

Minnie Atkins [01:02:56] A place like that?

Tiffany Hunter [01:02:59] Not at all.

Minnie Atkins [01:03:00] I'm just thinking about the children that play in the dirt.

Elwood Massey [01:03:03] Yeah, right.

Helen Massey [01:03:05] Yeah, right, right.

Elwood Massey [01:03:07] But we're not gonna get down in that dirt and play, are we?

Minnie Atkins [01:03:10] I mean, I ain't got no kids to do it either.

Helen Massey [01:03:12] Yeah.

Emma Yanoshik-Wing [01:03:15] I just have a couple questions about the neighborhood. Just kind of things that you mentioned up at the corner of Lake and Detroit, where you mentioned all the stores were. When. How long were the stores there? When did they kind of start disappearing? What was the process like?

Minnie Atkins [01:03:33] You're asking me?

Gladys Whitney [01:03:34] Let's see now.

Helen Massey [01:03:35] I'll tell you.

Minnie Atkins [01:03:36] There wasn't that much there when I got. When I moved here.

Gladys Whitney [01:03:39] No, that was when I was young.

Helen Massey [01:03:44] I know when we moved in the neighborhood, A & P was there. [crosstalk]

Elwood Massey [01:03:51] Darryl used to deliver papers up there, and he had to go up two stories, and he said he'd walk over. [crosstalk]

Minnie Atkins [01:03:58] [crosstalk] January 22 of 69.

Helen Massey [01:04:03] Oh.

Minnie Atkins [01:04:04] Because I went to work there in 67, and I saved my money to buy the house with, and then we put in for it, like, in August of 68, and it went through. But I didn't move until January 22 of 69. So that's how long I've been living over there. Was that about 36 years or something like that?

Helen Massey [01:04:21] Long time.

Minnie Atkins [01:04:22] Yeah, a long time. I was a young girl, 29 years old, when I was in trouble, an old woman, retired.

Gladys Whitney [01:04:29] That's the trouble. Now you don't have those convenience stores anymore, like, you know, where you can get everything.

Minnie Atkins [01:04:36] Now he bars were still here. Chick's Bar on the corner and that bar up there.

Helen Massey [01:04:43] Cheerios.

Minnie Atkins [01:04:44] Cheerios. They were all still here.

Gladys Whitney [01:04:46] They used to go and cash their checks there.

Minnie Atkins [01:04:47] And it was big houses where Popeyes and Burger King. You remember big houses.

Elwood Massey [01:04:54] Do you remember a gas station up there?

Minnie Atkins [01:04:56] Yes, I do.

Helen Massey [01:04:57] Okay.

Minnie Atkins [01:04:57] Yes, I remember that. And everything has changed, you know.

Helen Massey [01:05:01] Yeah, that's right. Yeah. There used to be all kinds of stuff. A pizza shop, and they didn't have to go anywhere.

Elwood Massey [01:05:08] 20, 25, 30 years ago, it started to flame out.

Gladys Whitney [01:05:14] They had a bakery where the baker was from Germany. He made all of his home made, you know, [inaudible] and cakes and all that sort of thing. Then on the corner on the end of that section there, they had a little vegetable garden. Like a man, I should say, had this little vegetable garden there, and he used to have all these fruits and vegetables and things. So they had, like I said, they even had the hospital at the corner. If anybody got sick. John's hospital.

Tiffany Hunter [01:05:42] When did St. John's start being a nursing home? Nursing home as opposed to a hospital?

Gladys Whitney [01:05:48] When what?

Tiffany Hunter [01:05:49] When did St. John’s take the switch?

Minnie Atkins [01:05:52] It hasn't really been that long. Ten years, maybe. Ten years?

Gladys Whitney [01:05:56] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [01:05:56] Not ten years. Yeah, they changed it. But I can remember when I first went to work at Union Carbide at home. I only been working there a little while, and they had this real old lady, you know, on the line beside of me, and I thought, you know, why is she still working? You know, she should have been retired. And I got to hold a conversation with her, and she told me she went to work at National Carbon in 1918 or something like that. And she said that they had been trying to get her to leave. She didn't want to leave the place.

Gladys Whitney [01:06:38] She was doing the job right.

Minnie Atkins [01:06:40] And then her chair turned over with her and she fell. So then after that, she knew that she was really unsteady on her feet. She knew that it was time for her to retire. But she told me that when she first went to work there as a young girl, probably in the 18 hundreds, maybe, that she used to get off of a bus up on Detroit and walk through a path down in here.

Gladys Whitney [01:07:05] Well, as I said, my mother said there was no factory down there then. Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [01:07:10] Now, that's what she told me. I guess you've been working there for years, you know.

Elwood Massey [01:07:14] Well, you know. Yeah, there used to be, I guess they'd ship and receive everything by railroad cars.

Minnie Atkins [01:07:20] That's right.

Elwood Massey [01:07:20] Because there's road tracks right into there from long years ago, so they didn't need a road down here.

Minnie Atkins [01:07:31] It's on my deed that my house was built in the early 1920s. And this used to be a sub lot of Old Brooklyn, all of this here.

Helen Massey [01:07:41] Oh, really?

Minnie Atkins [01:07:42] It's got right on my deed to my house. Sublot of Old Brooklyn. You know where old Brooklyn is?

Tiffany Hunter [01:07:51] Yeah, I know.

Minnie Atkins [01:07:52] Yeah. So it was this a part of that at one time. I often wondered about that.

Tiffany Hunter [01:07:59] Well, Ohio City was even like. That used to be called Brooklyn.

Elwood Massey [01:08:04] Ohio City did before it was Brooklyn.

Tiffany Hunter [01:08:06] And even when Ohio City became Ohio City, it was part of the Brooklyn Township.

Elwood Massey [01:08:10] I mean, that's a long ways from.

Minnie Atkins [01:08:12] That’s what's on my daughter. They said it was a sub, lot of it, years ago, because I've got the people's name that was on my deed to my house. They had lived there for 40 years before I had bought it from them.

Helen Massey [01:08:33] Oh, okay.

Minnie Atkins [01:08:35] And I don't know who lived there before, but they were getting ready to go into nursing homes or something like that because they were old and, you know, couldn't handle it anymore. Taking care of the yard.

Helen Massey [01:08:46] It was too much work for them.

Minnie Atkins [01:08:48] Boy, my husband would really. He really loved that yard. If a leaf would fly in it, he'd go get it.

Helen Massey [01:08:54] Really.

Minnie Atkins [01:08:56] But I haven't had him for 19 years to do the work for me. But my one son, Steve, he's been really good with doing it. But now he's got himself a girlfriend, so I guess he's around. I think it's called now he'll never be back.

Elwood Massey [01:09:11] Never.

Helen Massey [01:09:13] Steve's okay, though. He got us, like she was saying. We had petitions about the closing, the tunnel. He got us so many signatures on that. He really come through for us.

Elwood Massey [01:09:26] He really quit drinking.

Minnie Atkins [01:09:27] Are you kidding?

Elwood Massey [01:09:29] The girlfriend ought to make him quit drinking.

Minnie Atkins [01:09:31] I think the girlfriend drinks too.

Helen Massey [01:09:35] He don't drink that much. That's okay.

Elwood Massey [01:09:37] He walks around, two beers in his hand all the time.

Minnie Atkins [01:09:40] He says, one's in reserve for later.

Emma Yanoshik-Wing [01:09:49] And I just wanted to kind of go over. Gladys, you grew up here, and then you grew up, you or you lived on 75th and Madison before you moved here. How about you guys? Where now you both worked at GE. Did you live on the east side, too? And what brought you to this neighborhood?

Helen Massey [01:10:06] No, before we lived on west side.

Elwood Massey [01:10:11] For a while with my sister on East 55th and Luther, that's around Richmond brothers. Just up from Richmond brothers. You don't know what Richmond brothers is? Big clothing factory.

Minnie Atkins [01:10:24] Big clothing company. Makes suits and stuff.

Elwood Massey [01:10:26] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [01:10:29] Well, when I first come to Cleveland in 1956, I lived on the east side, too, just renting. And then my brother in law, he moved over here. And that's when he got the job at Union Carbide. And he said, you're not staying on the east side no more. I'm finding you a house. So he come over and picked me up one morning real early. He says, come on, girl, we're going. I said, where are we going? He says, well, we're gonna find you a place to move. And that's where I found 7500 Madison Avenue, moved in. And it was a barber shop straight across the street from me. And I had them three boys. And boy, it was good that he was over there giving them boys a haircut. So that's how I got over here. Cause I didn't live there very long. I think I lived there less than two years on Madison. And then I moved down here. But I've been in Cleveland since 1956. Cause I waited for Mike to be born. And Mike was born in 56. I waited for him to be born. Before I came to Cleveland, my husband was already here working.

Helen Massey [01:11:28] Oh, yeah.

Minnie Atkins [01:11:29] And I was with my mother.

Helen Massey [01:11:30] Yeah. Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [01:11:33] So I said, as soon as Mike gets six weeks old, I said, we'll be out.

Helen Massey [01:11:38] Now. Daryl said when I told him he was going to be here today, he said he was going to try to stop by to see you, but guess.

Minnie Atkins [01:11:45] He couldn't use up at the house all the time. But he gets aggravated with Steve, you know?

Helen Massey [01:11:50] He does.

Minnie Atkins [01:11:51] Yeah, Steve aggravates him because Steve talks a lot.

Helen Massey [01:11:54] Oh, that's ok.

Minnie Atkins [01:11:54] Tries to get, see, Steve is the kind of person, he tries to get people to do what he wants them to do, I guess.

Helen Massey [01:12:01] Yeah.

Minnie Atkins [01:12:01] And Darryl wanted Mike's phone number and he wanted him to wanted Daryl call him right now. Oh, Darryl says, I don't want to call him right now. Steve and I could tell Darrell was getting aggravated. I said, oh, here's the number, Darryl.

Helen Massey [01:12:12] I'll see you later.

Minnie Atkins [01:12:13] He said, okay.

Helen Massey [01:12:15] He said, I think he's going to cut his grass. You know he had the motorcycle accident.

Minnie Atkins [01:12:19] No, I didn't hear about that.

Helen Massey [01:12:21] Yeah, he did. Broke his shoulder and had five breaks. Messed his up, messed up the rotator cuff.

Minnie Atkins [01:12:28] And he's in therapy now.

Elwood Massey [01:12:30] That's the model of my bike up there. If you girls want take your ride on or if you want to ride later. It even tells you time of day. In the mornings and the afternoons, it'll say good morning, in the afternoon, all that.

Helen Massey [01:12:45] It'll say good morning, day and night. It's confusing.

Elwood Massey [01:12:51] No, we're not. I'm not through dark.

Helen Massey [01:12:54] I do.

Tiffany Hunter [01:12:55] I really appreciate you guys laying us in your home. Definitely sharing the stories that you guys share.

Minnie Atkins [01:13:01] Well, if you ever do it again, have Helen to call me and I will see if I can get some patterns together from all the arrangements that they've made because I haven't thrown nothing away.

Tiffany Hunter [01:13:12] Thank you so much.

Minnie Atkins [01:13:13] Thank you.

Elwood Massey [01:13:14] You girls lives will never be the same now

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