Skip to main content

Rosena H. Gaines oral history interview, 2004 March 25

 Digital Record
Identifier: OH-GA0380


  • Creation: 2004-03-25


28 Minutes

Language of Materials


General Note

Rosena H. Gaines describes her early life in Charlotte's Brooklyn neighborhood, and her experiences as both a student and a teacher at Second Ward High School. As a student at Second Ward, Mrs. Gaines recalls an active and involved student body participating in student organizations, sporting events, and after-school activities. She then recounts the close-knit relationships she formed with students and their parents after returning to Second Ward High School as a teacher. Mrs. Gaines also recalls her experiences mentoring and motivating troubled youth. Specifically, she discusses her use of unconventional methods to reform unruly student behaviors as well as her efforts to encourage her students to be ambitious and to set high academic goals. She also describes the sense of love and community spirit throughout Brooklyn and how that was lost when the neighborhood was demolished during the 1960s as a part of Charlotte's urban renewal program. In particular, she discusses the Brooklyn community's ambivalent reaction to urban renewal. Mrs. Gaines recounts how some community members did not want to block economic progress, while many other people opposed urban renewal but felt that their opinions had no effect on the outcome.

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

About this Site

Finding aids are guides to archival collections, including manuscripts, university records, and oral history collections. These guides help you find physical collections which can be viewed in the Dalton Reading Room on the 10th floor of Atkins Library. A small number of finding aids link to digital content online. Please contact us to learn more or to schedule an appointment:

Special Collections and University Archives
J. Murrey Atkins Library, UNC Charlotte
(704) 687-1170
Schedule an Appointment