From Porch Swings to Patios: Oral History Project

Interview of Sadie Mason on October 10, 1980.

Sadie Mason was born and has lived all her life in Charlottesville. She grew up on Commerce Street in Vinegar Hill and taught first grade for twelve years at her childhood school, the Jefferson School. When asked whether Vinegar Hill was all-black, Mason answers that she remembers playing with the Jews behind the Elks home. The Elks, a black social organization, "raised me . . . helped to educate me." She remembers her neighborhood fondly, and says that the feelings of concern for one another, of "love for each other", continued even after the Vinegar Hill urban renewal project displaced neighbors to different areas. Mason recalls how the firemen on Vinegar Hill would let children play under the hydrant in hot weather. She also recounts meeting President Franklin Delano Roosevelt when he visited Charlottesville back in the 1940s. Mason was a teacher at Jefferson School and Greenbriar School (from Reaves interview here). Mason expresses strong disapproval of how the urban renewal project of Vinegar Hill affected herself and other residents.

Listen to the Interview (27 minutes long):     28.8K     56.6K     Other

From Porch Swings to Patios: An Oral History of Charlottesville's Neighborhoods Prepared by the Department of Community Planning Advisory Board and students of the University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA, 1982 - 1984.

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