Interview with Charlie Mae Brooks, June 10, 1987
Project: Black People in Lexington Oral History Project
Interview SummaryRaised by her mother after her parents separated, she remembers her mother as strong, independent and a disciplinarian. She discusses growing up on Illinois Street; church and family related activities; and the lack of a father's influence upon her life. Mrs. Brooks comments upon the advantages and disadvantages of attending integrated schools; leaving school in the twelfth grade for New York; and, the racial prejudice she encountered while there.
After working at Jamaica Race Track, a glass factory and cleaning homes, Mrs. Brooks returned to Lexington in 1951, obtaining a position at Meyers(?) where she remained for 32 years until the store declared bankruptcy. Although the store was gradually integrating, Mrs. Brooks worked daily in discriminatory conditions. She recounts these experiences as well as the racism prevelant at Ben Snyders and Embrys; remarks upon the prejudiced supervisors for whom she worked; and, comments on the assistance she received from white colleagues in her attempts to address injustices. Presently, Mrs. Brooks is employed at Alternatives for Women.
She presents her opinion regarding the effects of the civil rights movement upon Lexington; the reasons for her lack of participation; the prejudice still evident within the area; and, the current status and conditions of the African American race. She comments upon the impact of welfare on the community and her respect of Dr. Bush Hunter and his family.
Interview KeywordAfrican Americans African Americans in Lexington Lexington, Kentucky Race relations
Interview LC SubjectAfrican American families African Americans--Civil rights--Kentucky African Americans--Education--Kentucky--Lexington African Americans--Kentucky--Lexington--Economic conditions African Americans--Race identity. African Americans--Religion African Americans. Brooks, Charlie Mae Brooks, Charlie Mae--Interviews
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Interview UsageInterviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.
Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.
All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.
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Brooks, Charlie Mae Interview by Emily Parker. 10 Jun. 1987. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.
Brooks, C.M. (1987, June 10). Interview by E. Parker. Black People in Lexington Oral History Project. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.
Brooks, Charlie Mae, interview by Emily Parker. June 10, 1987, Black People in Lexington Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.
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