Cities will often name streets after famous individuals in the city. It adds character, and tells you about the city: Flint, MI, a town known for General Motors, has streets named after Robert T. Longway, William Crapo Durant, Louis Chervolet, Antoine de la Mothe Cadillac, and Josiah Dallas Dort.
So what does it say when there’s a street named after a Klansman in your city?
WECT reports that the Fair Bluff Town Council in North Carolina voted Tuesday night to rename E. Brooks Street after it was discovered the street was named for Early Brooks. Brooks, a former Ku Klux Klan leader, was convicted in 1952 for his role in a local flogging. Councilwoman Clarice Faison pointed out the history of the name.
A documentary of the period describes Brooks as “the ideal lieutenant, an aggressive man who could do the Klan’s dirty work while the grand dragon kept clean as the public face of the KKK.”A resident of the city, Henry Bullock, 73, remembered Brooks as “really mean,” and said that he would run from Brooks. Just the sort of man you want immortalized with a street name.
The Council members ultimately voted to rename the road after two citizens who lived on it, the late Mr. and Mrs. James Goodman.
Watch a preview of the documentary, The Editor and the Dragon, in the link below: