Levittown

Historians should be able to look at this video as see the reactions both negative and positive of a white population when a black family moves into the growing subdivisions in the post war era. The community of Levittown, PA had mixed feeling and showed many fears when the Myers family integrated into the 60,000 people population. These fears could be seen as common in the generations, but also statistically proved to be wrong. The investments that families were making into the “American Dream” at that time were shared not only by whites but also blacks. The middle class family wanted to have the economic opportunity to grow and give their children a better life. This can be seen as a test for historians to see the reactions and refer to the statistics that they talked about with the fears of economic loss, loss of status, violence, and inter marriage. If we could have shown what we know now to the people in Levittown then, do you think we could have changed some of the minds in the community? Maybe we could, but that was also a time when people went off how they were raised.

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6 Responses to Levittown

  1. Are you SURE that the argument about property values was wrong?

    • adidasb25 says:

      I believe what the man that was doing the naration said was that as long as the white familes did not make a mad dash out of the neighborhood and put there homes up for sale that the property values would hold and even increase. So the white families fears would prove to be wrong.

      • Ever hear of the prisoner’s dilemma? Would you be willing to risk the biggest investment you ever made on the assumption that everyone in your neighborhood would do the right thing?

  2. bpgerler says:

    I don’t think anybody’s mind would have been changed if we could give statistics from today. They would have thought that we were just a part of some big NAACP conspiracy. Just like they thought that the Meiers moving into the neighborhood in the first place was a big conspiracy.

  3. adidasb25 says:

    Dr. Rees,

    I would not risk everything on that assumption. The way society was at that time it would be a 50/50 chance on the personal feelings of those home owners. I would not be suprised if many did put the homes on the market and take the risk of the community losing money. Though they would be faced with the same problem over and over in the assumption that the blacks would not move into those other subdivisions.

  4. mjarellano18 says:

    Without question, people living in this community in no way, shape or form would do the right thing. Maybe very few but for the most part people a significant portion of the population would pack up and move. And if they chose to stay and harbor some of their same old racist attitudes, violence might ensue and that too can lead to decrease in property value.

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