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Please go here for updates since this 2002
12244 Woodward Ave, Highland Park, MI 48203,
The State of Michigan stands indicted of promoting urban decay.
- Despite state appointed manager Ramona Henderson's attempt to
keep the McGregor Library open, the library was closed in April
|...In a past
email, Ramona Henderson wrote to me:
"...By the way, I think a library is an integral part of a
thriving culture. Given the MEAP scores in HP, closing a
library would be putting the nail in the coffin (so-to-speak) with
respect to any literacy goals..."
The McGregor Library gave people access to knowledge in one of
the poorest US urban settings.
The State has determined that Highland Park Citizenry no longer
The bankrupt city of Highland
Park, embedded inside Detroit, is ringed by some of the
World's richest suburbs. Despite this plethora of wealth, the city's
beautiful library has been neglected by the the city (which has no
funds) and the state. The budget was so meager as to be obscene.
The roof leaks and no major repairs have been done for
over a decade. Before it's end, their small staff ran on a shoestring budget.
is no money for new books, let alone periodicals, magazines or any other vital
information. Their internet access was laughable, consisting of four
computers for 17,000 citizenry, the vast majority of whom have no
computers or web access.
It is astonishing that a nation that has accumulated such wealth can
create a society of such nightmarish contrasts.
Highland Park - A city set within Detroit - was a jewel in the 1920's to
which the people of a nation aspired. Henry Ford produced the Model T
here. Chrysler had its world headquarters here. Within the area,
residences sprang up, it became the place to live.
Then Henry Ford bought huge tracts of land outside Detroit and left the
area. People followed the jobs. Then came the Detroit Riots, after which
much of the white population had a slow-motion riot of its own, moving
en masse to the newly built suburbs. Highland Park suffered the same
fate, leaving it a city of minorities - mostly poor. The final blow
came when Chrysler left for the suburbs, leaving the city with no
appreciable income to keep its infrastructure going.
If you have a car - and most Highland
Park residents do not - you can visit the libraries of the wealthy
suburbs and behold their amazing resources. Their libraries are new.
They are stocked with the latest books, tapes, periodicals and
magazines. Their public has internet access at the library and they can
even get dial up access from their home computers, compliments of the
Contrast that with Highland Park's
Is this the spirit of the nation? Should the poorest people with the
fewest chances of advancement be condemned to endure such lackluster
access to knowledge?
Was this what the framers of the United States Constitution had in mind?
Here are some photographs of the once magnificant McGregor Library,
before and after it was boarded up...
Before - Dome above the front doors. The entire
building is exquisitely decorated in the same manner
Before - Magnificant craftmanship - front doors to
Highland Park's McGregor Library
Four online computers - for
The entire library is filled with architectural
craft and sculpture
what it looks like now:
After - Boarded
up - no more knowledge distributed here.
it???! Is this the State of Michigan's solution to urban blight and
poverty? Close down the libraries of Michigan's poorest and most vulnerable
people? If I hadn't seen it with my own eyes, I wouldn't believe
It's simply too obscene for words.
McGregor Library Info:
12244 Woodward Ave
Highland Park, MI 48203
Previous Director: LaVerne Fant Calloway - firstname.lastname@example.org
Previous director of Communications: Bob Wicke - email@example.com
Monday June 25, 2001 - 6:00PM
Public Forum - Highland Park's Financial Crisis and the
Appointment of a Financial Manager
Highland Park Career Academy's Auditorium (formerly the Highland Park
Community College) Located on Glendale & Second.
Join Senator Martha G. Scott to discuss the state of our city.
For questions, please call 1-800-SCOTT-78 - Finished - See
Articles about the City of
Highland Park's bankruptcy:
Detroit Free Press:
Who's in charge of the Highland Park
Highland Park emergency financial manager
Ramona Henderson Pearson
State Financial Manager
City of Highland Park
12050 Woodward Ave.
Ramona Henderson is part of the Pearson
Best Places: http://bestplaces.com
Good discussion groups: Lowell
Boileau's "Fabulous Ruins of Detroit" Discussion
High resolution of images on this
site available on request.
This is a personal site,
and does not necessarily reflect the opinions of anyone mentioned in the
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