Daily Delawhere – June 8, 2020

Delaware, like most of America, has a racist past. Here is one story far too symbolic of that past, and present. The Rayfield family moved into a home at 107 Bellanca Lane in Collins Park, north of New Castle, on February 24, 1959. They were the only African Americans in the otherwise white neighborhood. Their house was bombed on April 6, 1959. Undeterred, the Rayfield family moved back into a rebuilt home soon thereafter. But a second terrorist bombing took place on August 2, 1959, forcing the family to move. To this day, the lot at 107 Bellanca Lane does not have a house on it.

I think the General Assembly or the New Castle County Council should order that a commemorative plaque be placed at this site, reminding us all of our racist history that we have yet to escape.

Photo from the Delaware in Pictures Instagram page.

Delaware politics from a liberal, progressive and Democratic perspective. Keep Delaware Blue.

2 comments on “Daily Delawhere – June 8, 2020

  1. kathy drain

    The blast shook the house. My hair blew back. I was 4 living at 130. Bellanca lane unaware of the violence that was taking place right up the street. I remember days before a stanger knocked on our door asking .mom to sign a petition to oust our negro neighbors. Dad was stationed in Greenland. Mom was taking care of me and my 6 sisters by herself and wanted nothing to do with that. I was proud of her for sending that stranger packing without her signature.

  2. Blacks and Jews were the targets of deed restrictions in many of Delaware’s early suburban developments. This would never have happened in, say, Fairfax, because Blacks weren’t allowed to buy there in the first place.

    The rigidity of redlining in Delaware is why the federal courts ordered busing as a remedy. Most of the suburban schools were almost entirely white. I remember my first year at UD, 1973, I was looking through my roommate’s high school (Dickinson) yearbook. His high school class was nearly 500 students, same as mine. But while my graduating class (in suburban Philly) was about 10% Black, his had a single Black student.

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