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Mary Heath, 2015 October 17

Identifier: CH-HE0009

Scope and Contents

Mary Heath, a Charlotte native, describes her life and experiences as a longtime resident of Optimist Park. Mrs. Heath discusses growing up in the Hickory Grove area of Charlotte and how desegregation impacted her education. She describes how she came to live in Optimist Park and how her children"s involvement in the Boy Scouts of America and Habitat for Humanity impacted that decision. She recalls the camaraderie that resulted from building her own and others" Habitat houses, and discusses her community involvement as secretary for the Optimist Park Community Association and as a member of the Fifteenth Street Church of God. Mrs. Heath reflects on significant changes within her community including rapid growth, increased diversity, and a reduction in drug and alcohol use. While she sees these changes as beneficial to the neighborhood, she is also cautious about the future of the community and how it will be impacted by pressures of new development and domination by the adjacent North Davidson arts district "NoDa."


  • Creation: 2015 October 17


Conditions Governing Access

Original audiovisual materials are closed to patron use. Please contact Special Collections to request the creation of use copies for particular items; requests will be accommodated when possible. The remaining materials are open for research.

Biographical Note

Mary Heath was a 62-year-old woman at the time of interview, which took place in the Fifteenth Street Church of God, Charlotte, North Carolina. She was born in Charlotte in 1953. She was educated at J. H. Gunn Elementary School, Albemarle Road Junior High School, Independence High School, and Central Piedmont Community College. She was employed as head of housekeeping at the Federal Reserve Bank and on the housekeeping staff at Johnson and Wales University in Charlotte.


23 Minutes

Language of Materials


Repository Details

Part of the Oral Histories, J. Murrey Atkins Library Special Collections and University Archives, UNC Charlotte Repository

Atkins Library, UNC Charlotte
9201 University City Blvd
Charlotte NC 28223 United States

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