Mel King, former state legislator, school board member, community organizer, writer, poet, and the keeper of perhaps the largest memory bank of South End’s turbulent history will be at the South End library on May 23rd at 6:30 PM. He will be introduced by State Rep. and Assistant Majority Leader, Byron Rushing.
King was raised in the New York Streets area of the South End by immigrant parents from Guyana and Barbados in the 1930s. He was the first African-American who made it to the primary in the race for mayor of Boston. Although he lost the election (to Ray Flynn), he became, among other things, an adjunct professor in the MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning. This led to the founding the South End Technology Center at Tent City, which gives the opportunity to young people aged 7 to 13 to acquire the latest computer and technology skills. In the late 1960s, his opposition to urban renewal and evictions of local residents led to the eventual construction of Tent City, which offers mixed-income housing for hundreds of Southenders. He is the author of Chain of Change: Struggles for Black Community Development and several collections of poetry.
The South End Library is fully handicapped accessible. Seating is limited. The event is free. Seating is limited. We offer refreshments. Books will be available for sale, signing, and borrowing from the library.