Mid-Century Mississippi: Homes for Colored Veterans

I recently ran across this ad in the June 30, 1946 edition of the Clarion-Ledger.

Advertisement in the Jackson Clarion-Ledger, June 30, 1946.

Advertisement in the Jackson Clarion-Ledger, June 30, 1946.

Attention! COLORED VETERANS

–Here’s The Home Buy Of The Year!

Pictured at left is just one of the twelve new homes that have just been completed!

Buy One Of These Bungalows Today–Move In Tomorrow!

Colored Veterans, here is your opportunity to buy a modern home under the liberal GI LOAN! Brand new bungalows with two bedrooms, living room, complete bathroom, ample closet space, modern kitchen . . . gas, electricity and water on the ground! All you are required to have is $100 cash for closing the sale, a job on which you are earning at least $115.00 monthly and be a veteran of the armed forces. Come early–it’s an outstanding and limited opportunity–because the first ones here will get the twelve that are ready!

A Salesman Will Be Available This Morning!

This morning from nine until noon there will be a representative on the grounds to answer any questions you may have and to close sales.

Location—-

Drive out Livingston Road (by the Rotisserie), past the new Sears & Roebuck plant, on across the railroad tracks and just over the tracks on the right you will see a Roebuck Subdivision sign–here are these twelve modern homes!

Payments Only Approximately $29 Per Month Including Taxes and Ins.

Remember! . . . Only colored G.I. Veterans are eligible to purchase one of these fine modern homes.

H.C. Bailey, Realtor

We can follow the directions via Google Streetview and this is what we find.

Looking in all directions, I don’t see a house that looks exactly like the house pictured in the advertisement, specifically the centered porch, but I see several houses with a very similar form: side gabled, three bays across the front, an off-center door, and I’m going to assume that these are some of those “twelve modern homes.”



Categories: African American History, Jackson, Military

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6 replies

  1. You don’t have to go that far out to find the exact same housing in the “white” part of town because I grew up in housing just like those. We lived there from 1950 until 1997, and it was built as a starter house for veterans. Except they’re still there! The subdivision was Broadmoor, and I’m pretty sure that Mississippi had no moors, but returning servicemen would know the term because they lived around them in England. Street names: Churchill, Casablanca, Naples, Melbourne, Normandy, Manila, Wellington, Londonderry, Launcelot, Manhatten (Atomic bomb project) Robinhood, etc. Those names rang a bell with veterans. I lived at 4821 Churchill Dr. The plans were 3 bedroom, one bath, living-dining combined, and kitchen. They were ingenious in that every other house was a mirror image of another, not necessarily next door, but in my case it was. They just flipped the plans. The entire house was brought out on a flatbed trailer, all prefab, and they threw it up in about a week. Thank you WWII. They had 2×2 studs on 18″ centers rather than 2×4’s on 16″ centers, floor furnaces, attic fan, and of all things, plywood walls covered in wall paper with this crazy netting behind it that was tacked to the walls. It was as basic a house as you could get, and this was really all that was available. Of course, over the years carports and utility rooms were added. My mother hung out the wash in the back yard until we finally got a dryer. The drying line was war surplus pipe welded together to form a tee, and it will be there forever since it was embedded in concrete. But I have, we had fun on that street. Talk about a baby boom, every house had three or four kids and we all ran loose in the streets. The big event being when the mosquito truck came by spraying DDT and we’d all run behind it as far as we could. We’d hang on to the truck when we were on our bikes and nobody cared. What a time to be alive!

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  2. I assume this H.C. Bailey is the precursor to the H.C. Bailey Company that developed Colony Park in Ridgeland, which includes the Renaissance and several office parks. Their website states that they began in real estate development in the 1930s.

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  3. Thanks for this update on this housing. I think what is significant is being able to find it still in existence and see how little has changed. I once lived in post WWII housing back in Texas and the neighborhood looked just like this.

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  4. And I noticed the possible connection to Bailey Ave as the north south corridor west , of N West street. And Lake Hico (HC)? At the north end out in what was country then.
    What does MDAH think of this whole area that surrounds the railroad sweeping across central Jackson. I would like to see some concerted efforts to document and make plans . Different community groups are looking at this area, like Cade’s Chapel and JMM foundation

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    • To be honest, although I’ve driven through here a few times (since it’s near Bully’s), I hadn’t ever really “noticed” it as “historic.” This advertisement was the first time I had ever had cause to do so. It’s certainly an interesting connection. Of course, the white GI neighborhood up adjacent to Broadmoor has never been formally listed on the National Register, even though it has a historic marker. Maybe both neighborhoods need to push for a second look.

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  5. In that same neighborhood at 3124 Sears Avenue there is a building with a sign the reads “Veterans 550 Club”

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