Sunday, July 15, 2012

Park #17: American Addition Park - Columbus

   Urban boonies was the only thought that came to mind when I set foot in American Addition. After stepping off the bus at around 7 something in the AM, I was greeted by the sound of a rooster crowing. Very weird. As I walked around the neighborhood, It seemed somewhat abandoned. Not abandoned like my part of town where there are so many boarded up historic homes (1/10th, 1/20th of the buildings maybe?) with crack dealer slits cut in the wood covering the windows. It just seemed like a chunk of buildings were either never there or were never built. Something wasn't making sense. It was not a huge subdivision, and yes it was across from a dump and there were railroad tracks to the south and west, but it seemed there was too much space, too much... nothing???

  So those were my thoughts as I walked towards the park, which was a rather unremarkable pocket park compared with the strange vibe its neighborhood was giving off. I lost the original pics along when my phone vanished, but I've taken a new set since.

This iconic water tower sits a couple blocks away from American Addition.

As does this funky building, which I thought was piles of rocks or something when I originally saw it from a distance on the bus.

This lies at the entrance to the community. Its a very cute place and on that day, a group was putting some work in. Again, I am simply a sucker for gazebos.

HE stands guard

I swear I've seen this sculpture before. Any ideas? It looks really familiar.
   Some of my questions about this place were answered after I googled it after taking the original set of pics. The history of American Addition explains that it is the oldest black community in Ohio and most of the homes were torn down long ago. Its a mind blowing read and spawns some hope for those still there.

   I talked to one lady, who turned out to be Marie Moreland-Short from the Dispatch Story. She was a little hesitant to talk since I was some random stranger perhaps seeming nosy, but we ended up having a nice conversation. She had things to do anyway since the center pictured below was bustling with children. I wished her luck and told her she has a community to be proud of.

This was why I originally got that "urban boonies" vibe.

A very average park in a rather extraordinary place.

Pretty large, maybe a bit larger than a football field.

Hope blooms again

For HIGHLY recommended further info on this part of town, I suggest these documentaries which tell their story with interviews with some of the original residents. Very cool. They are  here and here.

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