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In May of 2021, the Robinson-Spangler Carolina Room was honored to receive a request from two members of the Mecklenburg Board of County Commissioners to do historical research. They sought to identify, acknowledge, and address the harm done by systemic racism in the decisions of County government. They asked for historical background to make clear the origins and depth of the problem.
The Carolina Room took on the task and produed a report. It chronicles the lost potential, communal division, and long-term harm that is the story of racism everywhere. It also features some brave voices raised against it. It does not attempt to tell the whole history of Charlotte and Mecklenburg County. Such was not our mandate. It does, however, tell a different side of that story, one that emphasizes struggle and problems more than growth and consensus.
p.1-2 - Opening
- p.1 - Title and author credits
- p.2 - Introduction and Themes
pp.3-10 - Politics
- pp.3-8 - "Voting Rights"
- pp.8-10 - "Drawing Districts"
pp.11-19 - Law Enforcement
- pp.11-13 - "The Early Years of the Police Force"
- pp.13-14 - "Early Years of the County Courts and Prisons"
- pp.14-16 - "Imprisonment and Chain Gangs"
- pp.16-17 - "Lynching in Mecklenburg County"
- pp.17-19 - "Criminal Justice into the Present Day"
pp.20-28 - Education
- pp.20-21 - "Before Brown v. Board"
- pp.21-23 - "Brown v. Board and Token Integration"
- pp.23-25 - "Swann v. Charlotte-Mecklenburg Board of Education"
- pp.25-26 - "The County Resists Swann"
- pp.26-28 - "Resegregation in the 1990s and Onward"
pp.29-40 - Infrastructure and Service Provision
- pp.29-31 - "Health and Healthcare"
- pp.31-33 - "Public Welfare"
- pp.33-35 - "Sanitation"
- pp.35-36 - "Parks and Recreation"
- pp.37-39 - "Library"
p.40 - Closing and Thanks