Durham County Library, DHPA
The shaded area shows what was once the thriving Hayti District. Notice the
highway that now runs parallel to Pettigrew Street, once the primary business
street of Hayti.
Civil Rights Movement victories played a role in the decline of black communities
such as Hayti. When African-Americans won the right to live as citizens--and
consumers--in the white world, Hayti's businesses had to share their limited
pool of customers. However, according to historian Jean Bradley
Anderson, urban renewal dealt Hayti its death blow. In 1958
the Durham Redevelopment Commission adopted a plan to renovate 200 acres of
Hayti. Citizens whose homes and businesses were demolished for the renovation
were promised compensation as well as new buildings. Today, in the place of homes and
shops, runs the
Durham Expressway (407-408).