On May 31, 1921, six-year-old Olivia Hooker was home with her family when a group of white men launched an attack on the Greenwood section of Tulsa, Oklahoma. In less than 24 hours, the mobs destroyed more than 1000 homes and businesses. It’s estimated as many as 300 people were killed. The Tulsa Race Riot is considered one of the worst incidents of racial violence in American history. Olivia Hooker was the last surviving witness to the events of that day.
Know someone who’d make a good Last Witness? Get in touch. You can find us on Twitter and Facebook @RadioDiaries.
Juan's Diaries: Undocumented, Then and Now
Back in the 1990s, Juan crossed the U.S.-Mexico border illegally, and settled with his family next to the Rio Grande river in Texas. We gave him a cassette recorder to document his life there for NPR. Almost two decades later, we gave Juan another recorder to report on his life as an adult. In many ways, Juan has achieved the American Dream - he has a house, a good job, and three American kids. But...he's still undocumented.
The Bonus Army
In 1932, 20,000 WWI veterans set up a tent city in Washington. They called themselves the Bonus Army.
See photos of the Bonus Army here:
The Working Tapes
In the early 1970’s, author Studs Terkel went around the country with a reel-to-reel tape recorder interviewing people about their jobs. He turned these interviews into a book called, “Working.” After the book was released in 1974, the tapes were packed away in Studs home office. A few years ago, we at Radio Diaries, along with our collaborator Jane Saks of , were offered the chance to make a radio and podcast series out of the recordings. In today’s episode, we bring you some of our favorite stories from The Working Tapes.
The Story of Jane
Before the U.S. Supreme Court's decision in Roe vs. Wade, abortions were illegal in most of the United States. But that didn't mean women didn't have them.
Hundreds of women were dying every year in botched abortions. In 1965, an underground network formed in Chicago to help women who wanted to have abortions, in a medically safe way. At first, they connected women with doctors willing to break the law to perform the procedure. Eventually, women in the collective trained to perform abortions themselves.
Today on the Radio Diaries Podcast...The Story of Jane.
And a heads up - this story includes some graphic descriptions that may not be appropriate for all listeners.