Sartura Smith and LaTamarah Stackhouse
Recorded February 2, 2022 Archived February 2, 2022 30:22 minutes
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DescriptionSartura Smith (62) talks with her friend LaTamarah "Tammi" Stackhouse (48) about growing up in Tampa, Florida during segregation. She describes Central Avenue, a historic district for black owned businesses, her parents being restaurant owners there, family dinner traditions and the passing of her parents.
Subject Log / Time Code
Sartura (S) and Tammi (T) talk about becoming fast friends.
T talks of moving to Tampa from Virginia and S talks of being born and raised in Tampa, Florida. She describes two hospitals of the time during segregation where one was called Lily White Hospital and Clara Fry Hospital. She describes the Clara Fry Hospital being for blacks and named after the nurse Clara Fry.
S describes Central Avenue district as an area where there were black owned businesses and her parents owned a restaurant business. She mentions not being able to go downtown.
T references Central Avenue as a little Harlem. She asks S how does she feel about losing this? S describes an unarmed black teen who committed a petty crime being killed by the police. She talks of this leading to a riot and businesses being burned.
S talks about being a consultant while working for PBS for a Central Avenue documentary. She describes this experience and mentions that the memory of Central Avenue district lives on.
T asks S about a typical dinner in her household with her parents. S talks about her parents having a restaurant and as she describes her mother being an incredible cook. She describes the tradition of her mother cooking on Saturday for Sunday dinners and fried corn. S talks about her father and uncle at the table and describes them as dapper.
T asks S about her most difficult times in life. S talks about losing her father when she was 28-years-old. She describes the experience of seeing her father with cancer.
S talks about her mother dying at 98-years-old. She says that even though she was older it was still very difficult. She talks about thinking her mother would live for eternity. S describes not being able to see her life end. She talks of her mother's death as a huge loss.
S talks about being grateful for the life her parents were able to provide and that she felt rich. She recalls memories of traveling to New York and visiting the Broadway theatre. S talks about being a director of an after school program for girls and wanting them to have similar experiences.
T asks S if there is anything else she'd like to tell her. S thanks her for their friendship and being there through the difficult times. She then tells T about a saying her mother had, which was no matter how still you stand keep living.
- Sartura Smith
- LaTamarah Stackhouse