Title Page, Copyright, Dedication

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface and Acknowledgments

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pp. ix-xiv

At first, I was going to write a memoir about my life in Newark. A memoir would invariably have to be about me and it would be hard to give the many people I have worked with, and some who have done much more than I, sufficient attention. I then wondered if I should write a dispassionate, scholarly work on the city’s politics. I decided...

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Introduction

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pp. 1-6

On the evening of July 12, 1967, I was in my kitchen with my wife and four-year-old son, Frank. It was about 9:00 p.m., and we were having a cup of tea with our guest, Connie Brown, who had come to Newark to work with Students for a Democratic Society (SDS). The phone rang. The woman on the line told me with great...

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1. About Newark

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pp. 7-34

One of the nation’s oldest cities, Newark was founded in 1666 by a faction of Congregationalists who ventured south from New Haven, Connecticut, to establish a church and community that they fervently hoped would continue their religious and social values. The adult settlers were all born in England, but they also considered themselves...

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2. Winds of Change

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pp. 35-64

Fred Means lived with his grandmother in Pacolet, South Carolina, during the 1930s and 1940s. There was not much work there for African Americans except perhaps for farming. When his grandmother died, Means’s parents sold the house and “became a part of that great migration of Negroes from the segregated South to a place...

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3. The Collapse of the Machine

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pp. 65-99

As the 1960s began, the civil rights movement, led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., was inspiring civil rights activities all over the nation. It was a movement with many disparate parts, and it was sometimes chaotic and disorganized. Nonetheless, it was powerful and based on the idea the time had come for the end of racial...

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4. Rebellion and City Politics

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pp. 100-127

The violence that occurred in Newark over a five-day period in the summer of 1967 left twenty-six people dead, more than two hundred seriously injured, and property damage of more than $10 million. It would be difficult to assess the real costs to the city, for the disturbances further damaged the image and reputation of Newark...

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5. Political Mobilization in Black Newark

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pp. 128-144

Newark is a nonpartisan city for which local elections bear no political party designation, and factions and groups go at it largely according to their ethnic/racial, neighborhood, and family ties. So for a minority candidate to win at the game, the numbers have to be favorable and special efforts have to be made to rally black and...

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6. The Arrival of Black Power

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pp. 145-185

On June 16, 1970, Kenneth A. Gibson was sworn in as mayor on the steps of Newark’s city hall, becoming the first black mayor of a large northeastern city. Three years had passed since the rebellion, but Gibson was facing a city that was still reeling.1 Signs of decay and disinvestment were ubiquitous. The poverty rate was 22 percent...

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7. The Dancing Mayor

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pp. 186-215

It was inevitable that one of the black members of the city council would successfully seek the mayor’s position. Earl Harris, the old fox who had convinced the council to raise salaries and enlarge the perks of council members, had tried and failed in 1978 and 1982. Councilman Ralph Grant was planning for a run in 1982, before he...

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8. Black Mayor on a White Horse

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pp. 216-261

Newark never had a mayor like Cory Anthony Booker. For more than fifty years, Newark’s mayors have emerged from the city’s ethnic neighborhoods. Booker is a New Jersey native but not from the city. When he arrived in Newark sometime around 1995, shining with the brilliance of an Ivy League education, he said he was seeking...

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9. Pity the Children

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pp. 262-301

Schools are the lens through which one can understand how a city’s leadership carries out its special obligation to children, and to its future. In fact, a city that has suffered extreme loss of its economic base and much of its middle class cannot accurately claim that it has been transformed if a large share of its schools are dysfunctional. That is why...

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Conclusion

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pp. 302-316

Since the end of the 1950s, city leaders have offered plan after plan for a new and restored Newark. In 1958, Mayor Leo P. Carlin created a business-led economic development committee, and with the impetus of the charter change in 1953, Newark witnessed a building boom, with new public housing, new schools, a new YMCA building...

Notes

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pp. 317-346

Index

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pp. 347-377

About the Author

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pp. 378-378

Image Plates

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