- Goldmine: Root
- Oral History Collections
- Civil Rights and Desegregation in Charlotte
- Girvaud Justice oral history interview 2, 2006 August 11
Girvaud Justice oral history interview 2, 2006 August 11
Girvaud Justice was one of four African American students who attended all-white schools in Charlotte in 1957 as a challenge to the city's slow response to desegregate schools, which had been mandated by the Supreme Court ruling in Brown v. Board of Education in 1954. In this second of four interviews, Mrs. Justice continues to discuss her school experience at Piedmont Junior High School, her family's move during urban renewal, and challenges that her neighborhood of Belmont has faced since. Mrs. Justice explains that while she and her brother Gus did not face extreme hostility, their pioneer efforts did not lead to a change in public opinion about school integration, and she was ultimately prevented from attending the all-white Garinger High School. Mrs. Justice continues with a reflection on the impact that Charlotte city planning has had on poor black neighborhoods, describing her own family's enforced move from First Ward to make way for a road which never materialized. She recalls that hers was the first black family to move into the Belmont neighborhood, where they witnessed the practice of blockbusting by property speculators as more displaced black families sought places to live. Mrs. Justice describes the increase in crime, including drug trafficking, that her neighborhood has struggled with, and also the negative consequences of gentrification, which has led to increased property taxes that have priced poorer people out of the neighborhood.