read various chapters of this autobiography by going to the Individual Stories menu to the right.

Friday, January 2, 1970

Downtown Little Rock was magical in 1960's

MacArther Park Main Building
From my birth in December 1961 till 1968 our family lived in downtown Little Rock. I was fortunate enough to have a mom who believed in walking as the ultimate exercise, so we were out in downtown Little Rock every day from the time I could barely walk.

Southern towns, large or small, before the era of suburban sprawl, were pretty much like New England towns with all the stores downtown, sidewalks with people actually on them, city parks, old trees and old houses. I recall in particular the Woolworth, JC Penney, and the Safeway on Main Street. Woolworths was the most sensuous, with its dark hardwood floors and soda fountain (served grilled hamburgers and hotdogs of course). I can still recall the reverb of those hardwood floors.

A special mention is reserved for a favorite store outside of downtown, still in the innercity, on Roosevelt Road and Schiller Street map. Its name was Percival's, it was a little neighborhood store, really old even in the early 1960's. It wasn't the typical low boxy shape of small stores, it had a high pointy roof. The owner was the person behind the counter, and he was always nice to me.

We always lived within blocks of the Governors Mansion and MacArther Park, the park was my regular playground till we moved.

All the stores mentioned are long gone, most closed in the early 70's. There was an earnest attempt to revitalize Main Street in the early 1980's by closing part of Main Street for a created a pedestrian mall. That failed, and later in the 90's the street was rebuilt. As of 2010's, Little Rock inner city has enjoyed a true rebound into vibrancy and livability.
The author of this blog also has two books available on Amazon. Athena Techne uses some of the autobiographical content of this blog and adds a philosophical perspective utilizing the ancient Greek god Athena.

Athena Techne :: Page

Autistic Crow Computer is a fiction set in Seattle, about an autistic boy and two crows. The book was written for young autistic readers, although reviews by non-autistics have been positive.

Autistic Crow Computer :: Page

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