Nina Finley, second from right, shares some of her research with Faye Sanders, far left, Margaret Thomas Jurich and Belvia J. Thomas, right. / The Stewart Houston Times/Mark Hicks
The Stewart Houston Times
Kizer Ridge long on history in local black community
Racial strife was minimized by close ties with white neighbors
In many respects, the history of black residents in the bi-county area isn’t so different than other residents.
Farming and sharecropping, logging and working in saw mills were the primary vocations, while neighbors helped neighbors through tough times and stopped by for visits after church on Sunday.
“As a child back then, it wasn’t as bad as some places,” said longtime Kizer Ridge resident Belvia J. Thomas. “We made it work, and we did what we had to do to make ends meet. People respected us.”
Jurich attended Tennessee A&I (now Tennessee State University) in Nashville.