Miki Conn presents: Integrating Delmar 1957: The Story of a Friendship
October 21, 2021 | 4:30 PM
Join us for a unique opportunity with a local artist with many connections to Albany UU. On October 21 at 4:30 pm, the Inclusivity Team brings to Albany UU’s Community Hall (and on Zoom) local artist and poet, Miki Conn, who will present a very unique memoir. Integrating Delmar 1957: The Story of a Friendship chronicles a middle class African American family’s search for housing during the summer of 1957 and the results of they decision by a white couple, long-time UU Arlen Westbrook and her husband, to rent their house to the Cunningham family.
The lasting friendship that developed between Arlen Westbrook and Margaret Cunningham is a very important part of this story. Miki Conn , the Cunningham’s elder daughter, also will share other fascinating details that lead to the publication of this memoir in 2011 and its recent republication. Coincidentally, a new member of Albany UU has an interesting personal connection to the Cunningham family and how this memoir was saved from obscurity.
This book is currently available from Amazon in various forms, including paperback and Kindle. One copy is available from Albany UU’s Joy Library. The Upper Hudson Library System has some copies of the original 2011 book. Register early to get a socially distanced in-person seat at Albany UU or to participate via Zoom if that is your choice.
This is a short, very readable and uplifting memoir that gives readers an opportunity to take a look back, not at history or theory, but at the lived experiences of Margaret Cunningham and Arlen Westbrook. This memoir is just as relevant to UUS today because of the growing attention of Americans to the lingering consequences of racism, especially regarding education about race in America and the treatment of black children in and out of school.