Interview with Jessie McCrary
QUESTION 4
MADISON DAVIS LACY:

Were there any opportunities for new Black institutions to take their place?

JESSIE McCRARY:

Yes. But that happens over a period of time.

MADISON DAVIS LACY:

Start again

JESSIE McCRARY:

Yes, there were opportunities for new institutions to take the place of those. But you have to understand, Overtown was not built overnight. Overtown had a history. It had the history of being our place together. We are here. We are brothers. We are business people. And what you are asking or what some would suggest is that we'll go get 40 acres somewhere and rebuild that. You can't rebuild history over night. It took a long time to develop the Mary Elizabeth Hotel. It was years before we had a major hotel like the Sir John that was previously called the Sir Cabot Hotel. You don't do that overnight. And the goodwill was some of the location. You know, you've got one hotel on this corner. You can walk down the street to the other one. You walk around the corner to the other one. You walk down the street a little further, there's the Magic Chef. And remember what Overtown was, was, was so attractive until there were people who came from distant places to Miami and the first place they were going to go was Overtown. It's like people who come to Miami and say I'm going to Miami Beach. This was the Mecca.

MADISON DAVIS LACY:

Good. That's good