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Giffey, David / The people's stories of South Madison
Volume 1 (2001)

Peaches Lacey,   pp. 25-26 PDF (999.9 KB)

Page 25

Peaches Lacey
I came here when I was 10 years old. I had come from Chicago.
I had not really been used to seeing as many non-people of color 'til I came
here actually. I had never been on a farm. It was actually an apple orchard
Verona. Very pretty, you know, but strange.
I went to Franklin school that was on Lakeside. And then when Lincoln
opened up as a middle school I went to Lincoln. And then when I went to high
school I went to Central. My mother graduated from there too, in 1938.
When I first came here they couldn't pronounce my name. It was really different
because all my teach-
ers at the time in Chicago were either black or Puerto Rican. So that's all
you knew. My principals were
Had to really come up to Beld Street, then you got to Beld Street, then a
lot of African Americans like
on Baird and Fisher and Taft. Those were basically where a lot of the African
Americans lived.
The South Madison Neighborhood Center was the height of all of our growin'
up. Which is now the
Boys and Girls Club. We just basically grew up here. The center was basically
our focus. This was where
we came to teen night on Friday nights, and had our little record spins.
This was where we had sleep overs,
pajama parties, things like that.
In fact my mom could have got me to do almost anything just as long as they
didn't take Teen Night
away from me. I think I really could of stood havin' a whuppin' as long as
I could come to the center on
teen night.
Typical teen night. Sometimes we would have a talent night. Some of the teens
and kids from the
neighborhood would put on a little show. They'd sing and dance to music or
whatever. We first started out
we had a juke box here.
I think there became less and less African-American students coming to the
university or being recruit-
ed. As the years went on, there seemed to be a separation between the community
and the university. The
community didn't include the university as much, or the university didn't
include the community as much
with the togetherness like it had been.
Things just don't happen like they used to. I've noticed in the last 8 or
10 years that the people in cer-
tain forms of leadership, it seems like they have to wade through so much
stuff in order to help people. It's
like they have a lot to lose now. And because of that they have to really
weigh when somebody brings
some kind of issue to them. If they are gonna put themselves out there to
help the people or not. To help
people sometimes may be restricting or may come from the fact that they been
burned a couple a times,
and you get burned enough you learn that that's the fire and you don't want
any part of it.
I don't know where this tunnel vision comes from. There used to be a time
when people would pick up
on anybody who wanted to serve. Now, it's like, do you have enough education?
Or should we listen to
what that person says? Or I saw this person in a compromising place, so I
don't know if I want them to do
something else over here. That to me is really a difficult situation.
Harvey Scales and the Seven Sounds used to come here on a real regular basis..
.used to play down on
campus all the time, out of Milwaukee.
So if "Baby Love" by the Supremes was number one, it was hard for
them not to play that here
because it was number one. It still wasn't a thing where you could hear them
all the time. To this day it's
still not. Which is one of the reasons why it's so good that we have WORT-FM
here. Because it gives us a
chance to kind of let people know what may be going on with the different
And then of course, Madison did things a little later than anybody else.
It could have been played two
years ahead in Chicago, and then it came here two years later.
25                                 Peopl~~~~~~~~~~~~~s Stories~~~~~~~~~~~
People's Stories

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