What is your name? To Gordon Allport, one of the founders of personality psychology “the most important anchorage to our self-identity throughout life remains our own name.” Every time your name is spoken, your identity is acknowledged. Names are our cultural identity; your name is a fundamental part of your personal brand. When we feel compelled to compromise our identities for social acceptance, our sense of self is compromised.
The historic, suburban community of Acreage Home, about 10 miles northwest of downtown Houston was once recognized as the South’s largest unincorporated African American community. Developed during the first World War, it was named Acreage Home because the properties were sold by the acre, instead of by the lot. Residents dug their own wells and built modest homes. Although many plots lacked curbs and sidewalks and there were no storm drains (deep ditches lined many of the streets) it was a place where residents could become proud property and homeowners. Sammie Mae Ford, a resident of Acreage Home quoted in the Houston Chronicle, said in the 1920s most of the residents had gardens in their yards and raised chickens and hogs. Ford described Acreage Home as “like it was the country” and “a place where people had to help each other.”
The heavily pine-wooded, affordable land offered low taxes, and neighbors enjoyed plenty of room to grow gardens and raise livestock. Working class families, farmers, skilled laborers, and domestic workers bought the acreage platted for African Americans. Kristen Mack of the Houston Chronicle said that as the designation evolved into Acreage Home it was marketed as “a bit of genteel country with quick and easy access to the city.” Part of the area was annexed as part of the City of Houston in 1967. The remaining portion was absorbed by the city in 1974. Since its founding the community has nurtured artists like hip hop celebrity Slim ug who grew up in Acreage Home. Award-winning actor Loretta Devine, publisher Roy Douglas Malonson and rappers Camillionaire, and Paul Wall are from the area. Mayor Sylvester Turner and nationally renowned educator, Addeus S. Lott Sr. called the neighborhood home.
In rap idiom Acreage Home is nicknamed the “44,” a er the “Acreage Home Limited”, the #44 METRO bus route that traverses Acreage Home. In 2002 Kristen Mack of the Houston Chronicle wrote that the lots of the “comfortable” larger houses were “well-maintained” while the smaller houses, among them many shotgun houses that were owned by absentee landlords were “ramshackle”. In 2008 Lori Rodriguez wrote in Houston.
Chronicle that Acreage Home, along with MacGregor-Riverside Terrace, “barely held on to their historical population base” a gated community had just opened there In 2016 the residents petitioned Houston City Council to protest the new developments of new industrial facilities and townhouses. Still, La Sierra began development in 2017. Investors were skeptical when David Bohorquez built new homes with contemporary facades and open floor plans that started then in the $300,000s Even with the continuing new construction and he y price tags, there remains a perceived stigma attached to Acreage Home. Maybe that’s why there is a push to rename the gentrifying area Highland Heights. e inevitability of urban renewal looms. And history repeats itself. e ird Ward, the center of Houston’s civil rights organizations in the 1960s, is now barely 45% Black.
The Fifth Ward, originally known as Frenchtown, began as a settlement of about 500 Black people of Spanish and French ancestry who brought their traditional Creole music with them. When mixed with blues and jazz, it produced zydeco. In the 1950s over forty Black-owned businesses were situated on Lyons Avenue. Duke Ellington used to play at Club Matinee, the “Cotton Club of the South”. Before the most recent census count the Black population was 56%. Now it is just 48%, and a Family Dollar store occupies the site where the Continental Lounge stood. Longtime members of Acreage Home claim to hold no ill will towards their new, wealthier neighbors whose assets will inevitably cause everyone’s taxes to rise and alter the prevailing ethos, but hope they respect the sacred history and customs that preceded them. And they can’t help but wonder why white folk had to move in for Acreage Home to be “revitalized”.
October 16, 2023, HOUSTON, TX – Congressional Candidate Amanda Edwards has raised over $1 million in less than 4 months, a substantial sum that helps bolster the frontrunner status of the former At-Large Houston City Council Member in her bid for U.S. Congress. Edwards raised over $433,000 in Q3 of 2023. This strong Q3 report expands on a successful Q2 where Edwards announced just 11 days after declaring her candidacy that she had raised over $600,000. With over $829,000 in cash-on-hand at the end of the September 30th financial reporting period, Edwards proves again that she is the clear frontrunner in the race. “I am beyond grateful for the strong outpouring of support that will help me to win this race and serve the incredible people of the 18th Congressional District,” said Edwards. “We are at a critical juncture in our nation’s trajectory, and we need to send servant leaders to Congress who can deliver the results the community deserves. The strong support from our supporters will help us to cultivate an 18th Congressional District where everyone in it can thrive.” Edwards said. “Amanda understands the challenges that the hard-working folks of the 18th Congressional District face because she has never lost sight of who she is or where she comes from; she was born and raised right here in the 18th Congressional District of Houston,” said Kathryn McNiel, spokesperson for Edwards’ campaign. Edwards has been endorsed by Higher Heights PAC, Collective PAC, Krimson PAC, and the Brady PAC. She has also been supported by Beto O’Rourke, among many others. About Amanda: Amanda is a native Houstonian, attorney and former At-Large Houston City Council Member. Amanda is a graduate of Eisenhower High School in Aldine ISD. Edwards earned a B.A. from Emory University and a J.D. from Harvard Law School. Edwards practiced law at Vinson & Elkins LLP and Bracewell LLP before entering public service. Edwards is a life-long member of St. Monica Catholic Church in Acres Homes. For more information, please visit www.edwardsforhouston.com
As September 13th rolls around, we extend our warmest birthday wishes to the creative powerhouse, Tyler Perry, a man whose indomitable spirit and groundbreaking work have left an indelible mark on the world of entertainment. With his multifaceted talents as an actor, playwright, screenwriter, producer, and director, Tyler Perry has not only entertained but also inspired audiences worldwide, particularly within the African-American community, where his influence and role have been nothing short of powerful. Born in New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1969, Tyler Perry’s journey to stardom was a path riddled with adversity. Raised in a turbulent household, he found refuge in writing, using it as a therapeutic outlet. This period of introspection gave rise to one of his most iconic creations, Madea, a vivacious, no-nonsense grandmother who would later become a beloved figure in Perry’s works, offering a unique blend of humor and profound life lessons. Despite facing numerous challenges, including rejection and financial struggles, Perry’s determination and unwavering belief in his abilities propelled him forward. In 1992, he staged his first play, “I Know I’ve Been Changed,” which, although met with limited success, was a pivotal moment in his career. Unfazed by initial setbacks, Perry continued to hone his craft, and by 1998, he had successfully produced a string of stage plays that showcased his storytelling prowess.
Calling all teenage student-athletes! If you have dreams of playing college soccer and wish to represent an HBCU, the HBCU ID Camp is your golden opportunity. From 8 am to 5 pm on November 11-12, Houston Sports Park will transform into a hub for aspiring male and female soccer players. Coaches from HBCUs across the nation will be present to evaluate, scout, and offer valuable feedback. Moreover, they might even spot the next soccer prodigy to join their collegiate soccer programs. This camp is not just about honing your soccer skills but also a chance to connect with the HBCU soccer community. You’ll learn the ins and outs of what it takes to excel on the field and in the classroom, which is crucial for a college athlete. The HBCU ID Camp is an excellent platform to network with coaches, learn from experienced athletes, and take the first steps toward your college soccer journey. To secure your spot at this incredible event, don’t forget to register [here](insert registration link). Space is limited to 120 participants, so make sure to reserve your place before it’s too late. It’s time to turn your dreams of playing college soccer into a reality.