Interview with Reverend John Powis

In the mid-60s, in this period before the Ocean Hill-Brownsville experiment, who lived in Ocean Hill-Brownsville?


I got in, I came to Ocean Hill-Brownsville in 1963, and the place was just teeming with people, and as I walked up and down the streets, the thing that I noticed most was that there were still a number of Jewish people living in the neighborhood. But, gradually what was happening was large Black and Hispanic families were moving in to these tenements that had 16 or 20 apartments, whereas one or two Jewish people would live in an apartment, there was now eight or ten people living in each apartment, so the neighborhood was just teeming with people. I would say the neighborhood at that point was about 65% Black and about 35% Hispanic.