Well into adulthood, I admit to having had a fear of 'the south' that was linked to the awful behavior of mobs and individuals during the '60s in response to desegregation and the civil rights movement. Bombing 'black' churches, lynching, burning down houses of African Americans who chose to speak out and up, fierce police dogs attacking peaceful protestors, yahoo bigots screaming racist slurs and a host of other despicable practices made the region anathema. And, of course, the slave cabins and images from Kingsley Plantation continue to reinforce the notion that this is not a region to visit let alone live in if you are a white, liberal, Yankee.
But, having now been a full time resident of north Florida for more than a year, I feel there has been significant change, and my discomfort has abated. I know there was no dearth of racist intolerance and bigotry in many other regions as well, but the consequences of red-lining, block busting, unfair hiring and firing and a host of other sins didn't make the headlines the way what happened in the segregated south did. A bad rap? I don't think so, but now is not then...thankfully!
So, it is wonderful and refreshing to read the story linked below, and view the images of a North Carolina itinerant photographer made of different stuff.