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Historic Monument Honoring Minority Community to be Unveiled

Published on Thursday, June 2, 2022 | 5:51 am

Councilmember John Kennedy is inviting the public to pause and remember a “vibrant heavily minority community,” at the unveiling of the 100 West Walnut Development Project historic monument Thursday.

The monument remembers minorities that once lived in the area.

“Beginning in the late 1800s generations of African Americans, Japanese Americans, Mexican Americans and other residents lived in this neighborhood. They raised families, ran businesses, built churches and shaped Pasadena’s social fabric while combatting racial prejudice and discrimination,” a plaque at the site reads.

The event will be held from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

African Americans living nearby were displaced by freeway construction and Chinese residents were run out after a violent mob burned down businesses. A resolution was later passed by Pasadenans barring those of Chinese descent from living in the predominant parts of Pasadena.

Despite the incidents, there are no monuments commemorating that part of the city’s history.

Caltrans demolished hundreds of African-Americans homes to make way for a freeway extension that was never completed. In recent years, the land has served as little more than a rock quarry.

The city is currently working with Caltrans to reclaim the land.

The city erected a plaque at Mills Place where the mob burned Chinese businesses.

Councilmember John Kennedy, who represents the area where the new buildings in the complex are located, fought to make sure history was properly reflected.

The unveiling event will start at 11 a.m. at 100 West Walnut Street in Old Pasadena.

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