Detroit's Lost Poletown: The Little Neighborhood That Touched a Nation

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Poletown was a once vibrant, ethnically diverse neighborhood in Detroit. In its prime, it had a store on every corner. Its theaters, restaurants and schools thrived, and its churches catered to a multiplicity of denominations. In 1981, General Motors announced plans for a new plant in Detroit and pointed to the 465 acres of Poletown. Using the law of eminent domain with a quick-take clause, the city planned to relocate 4,200 residents within ten months and raze the neighborhood. With unprecedented defiance, the residents fought back in vain. In 2004, the Michigan Supreme Court ruled that the eminent domain law applied to Poletown was unconstitutional—a ruling that came two decades too late.
ISBN: 9781467145794
Format: Paperback
Publisher: The History Press
State: Michigan
Images: 55
Pages: 144
Dimensions: 6 (w) x 9 (h)
Brianne Turczynski is a freelance writer and historical researcher in Detroit. Her work has appeared in Halcyone Magazine, the 3288 Review, Michigan Out of Doors Magazine, The Record and others. She has won awards through Oakland University for her nonfiction, and she’s currently producing and directing a documentary film about social changes in one of Detroit’s oldest neighborhoods. In her spare time, she repairs broken violins and loves to fish. She resides somewhere in Michigan with her husband, children and the fastest dog that ever lived.
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