Discuss Detroit Hall of Fame Threads Inkster - Little Saigon Previous Next
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Tkangas_23
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Username: Tkangas_23

Post Number: 25
Registered: 09-2006
Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 12:41 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I recently heard about an area in Inkster that unofficially refered to as "Little Saigon".

Supposedly it is a square mile of crime and violence, where even the police fear to tread due to numerous cop killings. For some reason I was intrigued to hear about it, and would like to know if anyone knows about this or have any pictures or stories??
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Wsukid
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Post Number: 165
Registered: 06-2004
Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 1:56 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Tkangas

Little Saigon actually called Demby terrace is a section of inkster bordered by Annapolis to the south Inkster to the east and almost Middle belt to the west im not quite sure how far it goes north I want to say Carlysle

Anyway Little Saigon is a section of public housing on a much more suburban style than many in Detroit. very low lying one level housing. It was built primarly for african americans heading from the south to work at ford (henry ford had a say in building because Dearborn residents freaked out so this was built as a compromise)

Crime wise I live a few streets away and overall I have not been concerned. We hear shootings and we always see inkster cops through the area. Overall inkster itself is a pretty safe place. the only section that I would get nervous about being in is the section of public housing Along annapolis rd from inkster to henry ruff there are a couple sections of public housing.
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Missnmich
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Post Number: 607
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Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 10:26 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

So what is the story behind Inkster, and the gerrymandered shape of Dearborn Hts.?
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Parkguy
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Post Number: 99
Registered: 04-2007
Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 10:53 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Dearborn Heights became incorporated from what remained of Dearborn Township after several cities were created over the years.
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Hudkina
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Post Number: 44
Registered: 12-2004
Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 2:28 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Inkster was created from portions of Nankin TWP and Dearborn TWP as a means of housing southern blacks moving to Detroit to work in the Ford Rouge Plant. Dearborn was notoriously segregated at the time and even today there are few blacks living in Dearborn. Inkster was first incorporated as a village in 1926, but didn't become a city until 1970.

Dearborn is actually the amalgamation of two former villages: Dearborn (which is now Westborn) and Fordson (which is now Eastborn).

Dearborn was a village in Dearborn TWP while Fordson was a village in Springwells TWP. Parts of all four municipalities were merged into the city of Dearborn in 1928. What was left of Springwells TWP had been annexed by Detroit and what was left of Dearborn TWP became Dearborn Heights.
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Vetalalumni
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Post Number: 586
Registered: 05-2007
Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 3:27 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

In the late 60s my family had friends in Inkster. I was very young, but I do recall they were southern and extremely nice.

I remember an old tale from childhood that the name Inkster came about in reference to the many Black residents.

As a quickstart, the infallible Wiki and the Inkster web-site have brief historical information.

(Message edited by vetalalumni on August 26, 2007)
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Rockcity2windycity
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Post Number: 233
Registered: 11-2005
Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 3:54 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I lived in Inkster briefly when i returned to Michigan from Chicago last year. I liked living in Inkster and wouldn't have a problem living there again. I lived close to the Little Saigon area. Flint should have the name Little Saigon or Little Baghdad, i feel safer in Detroit than Flint
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Karl
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Post Number: 9583
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Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 4:26 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

"Dearborn (which is now Westborn) and Fordson (which is now Eastborn)."

Wrong.

There is no "Westborn" except for what used to be and perhaps still is the Westborn Shopping Center, and Westborn Market, privately owned.

There is no "Eastborn" but if you google Eastborn, MI there is ONE reference to an AREA called EastBorn, which refers to an area inhabited predominantly by Middleeasterners, AKA those Born in the East, what do you know.

There is the City of Dearborn, with an east and a west side, like most cities. Google that and the others, see for yourself.
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Hpgrmln
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Post Number: 118
Registered: 06-2007
Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 7:04 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I briefly went through the East side of Saginaw the other day. THAT would be little saigon. Worse than I imagined.Ive seen areas of Flint that were better, by a mile
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Hudkina
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Post Number: 45
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Posted on Saturday, August 25, 2007 - 10:26 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wrong? Really?

I've heard lots of people refer to the east side as Eastborn and the west side as Westborn. It's not anything official, it's just what some people call the different former villages now. Eastborn is to the east, Westborn is to the west, and Fairlane is the area in between.

Just because you don't call them Eastborn and Westborn doesn't mean that others don't.
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Gistok
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 1:39 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wow, Karl's remarks means that you must have struck a nerve. Karl do you live in Dearborn?

Wanna see some ruffled feathers... just call Ann Arbor a suburb of Detroit, and watch Citylover go ballistic... (more so than usual!) :-)

(Message edited by Gistok on August 26, 2007)
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Fareastsider
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Post Number: 555
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 2:06 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Actually the reason Dearborn Heights is the wierd shape is because the long narrow section connecting the north and south ends was a section of Inkster at one point. There is a law in Michigan that cities must be contiguous ( THe same rule doesnt apply to Twps. e.g. Brownstown) Hence that part of Inkster was primarily white though small and since Dearborn Twp was primarily white it was seen as a racial issue. I believe DH incorporated in 1967+/- and that it was seen as a way to create a separate city. Inkster did not want to loose that land but failed making way for the present Dearborn Heights with it wierd shape connecting the two separate sections of what was left of Dearborn Twp!
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Karl
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Post Number: 9592
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 10:17 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

No nerve struck, and no, I don't live in Dearborn - but I know approx 100 folks that do, speak with them regularly, and most have lived there 30+ years. Never have I heard any of them use these terms even once. The term "Fairlane" is used the same way I mentioned earlier about "Westborn" - when referring to Fairlane Towne Center or Henry Ford's mansion, now a part of UM-Dearborn - but again, never as a part of town. I have heard the terms "west Dearborn" and "east Dearborn" used to denote the geographic part of Dearborn where someone/something might be located, but that's it.

BTW Hudkina, I wouldn't say things like "Dearborn is actually the amalgamation of two former villages: Dearborn (which is now Westborn) and Fordson (which is now Eastborn)."

And then say: "It's not anything official,...."

Again, I've never heard heard a Dearbornite use any of these terms except in the context I've mentioned. However, I will do some checking and report back. I have already googled the terms and posted the results.
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Danny
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Post Number: 6395
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 11:30 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Garden City has "Little India" community located on Ford Rd. and Harrison its fill with lots of Indian owned businesses.
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Tayshaun22
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Post Number: 372
Registered: 02-2005
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 1:39 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Wsukid, I'm pretty sure Little Saigon in particular are the projects located from Henry Ruff to the W, Annapolis to the S, Burton to the E, and the railroad tracks to the N.

The area you describe though is creepy, it rivals the East Side on the number of abandoned lots.
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Sstashmoo
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Post Number: 318
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 1:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Karl,

Same here, never heard of any "areas" of Dearborn referred to as "Westborn" or "Eastborn". They are both shopping centers or markets.

Just West Dearborn and East Dearborn and Southfield rd. (I think) is the dividing line between the two.
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Fareastsider
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Post Number: 559
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 1:59 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I always found Inkster interesting from a design standpoint. I cant say it is the nicest town I have seen. I find interesting the number of curvelinear streets filled with older style tract houses (bungalows?, capecods? whatever) Many of those neighborhoods back up to the lower Rouge park which is largely wooded. I wonder why the city was designed that way?
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Elsuperbob
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Username: Elsuperbob

Post Number: 74
Registered: 03-2007
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 2:07 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Karl, actually the term "Westborn" is sometimes used. I don't hear it used much anymore. It was just a marketing name for the general area of Michigan Ave. from Brady to Outer Drive. And we sometimes used it to say we're going to West Dearborn.

Westborn Market, Westborn Mall and the now closed Westborn Theatre probably all got their names from being in "Westborn".

Likewise there is also an Eastborn Market on Wyoming here in the East end. And I have hear the term Eastborn (More recently than Westborn in fact).

And I may be remembering wrong but I think "Westborn" might actually be on the list of terms not to use in official city documents when referring to downtown West Dearborn. I'll have to check that but if it is then it was used enough to warrant a warning not to use it.
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Karl
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Post Number: 9597
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 4:27 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I made a few telephone calls to long-time Dearborn residents today and asked. These are folks who've lived and worked in Dearborn, all for over 50 years each, and are actively involved in Dearborn activities, politics, churches and neighborhoods. Not one had ever heard either term used, even once, except in reference to proper names of markets, malls, theatres, etc. Further, the term "Eastborn" didn't ring a bell with anyone, for any reason.

I would tell them they need to get out more, but this particular group of people's activity schedule makes me tired - and I consider myself very active.
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Missnmich
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 4:44 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Fareastsider --

Great to know you have extensive knowledge of the western suburbs too.

I am a map geek (like so many of you guys) and I have wondered whether racial patterns determined the isthmus of Dearborn Hts. Thank you for your contribution.

I am also curious about the small piece of Detroit on the west bank of the Rouge (Parkdale?) that seems more connected to suburb than city. Yet, from Google Earth, you can tell where the D.H./Detroit line is by the size and shapes of the roofs!
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Elsuperbob
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Post Number: 75
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 7:35 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I also asked my mother, Karl, who has been a long time resident and she hasn't heard of it either as you said. I've only been here 20 of my 26 years so I don't know. Maybe it's a colloquialism some people use because of all the "Westborn" this and thats. And Eastborn developed as a response to that by those same people.

Similarly, the way so many seniors here mispronounce the city as "Dearburn" (note burn not born) is something many of my generation have no idea what I'm talking about.

In any case I'm really curious now about it but this isn't the thread to discuss it in. If I find out more I'll bring it up elsewhere.
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Kova
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Post Number: 117
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 7:55 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

as a eastside resident of dearborn i can say that the only time you will hear eastborn and westborn is when referring to the respective fruit markets in those areas. Some refer to the sides of dearborn as "westend" or "eastend" but not eastborn or westborn.
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Gazhekwe
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Post Number: 160
Registered: 08-2007
Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 8:12 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

My husband's family lived on a small farm in Inkster in the late 40s. We buzzed down there to see what it looks like now, and there is a school built where their house was. My mother-in-law was able to identify the site of the fabulous cornfield where she got as much fresh corn as she wanted. Two neighboring houses were still there. We wandered south and found that vast housing project. It all looked quite neat and orderly on this beautiful day.
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Cozmikdebris
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 8:40 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I've been in cars driven by some crazy friends seeking crack that went to Little Saigon. A place on Pine St. off Inkster, where we actually got out of the car for a short time. Another place they called Little Beirut was north of Middlebelt just south of Michigan Ave (Cherry St/Springhill St area). This was late '80s-very early '90s.

You (at least I) don't really hear about crack like you used to, and I assumed it wasn't that big a deal any more. More likely it's because I no longer know anyone that still does it.

(Message edited by cozmikdebris on August 26, 2007)
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Hudkina
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Posted on Sunday, August 26, 2007 - 11:11 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Karl, maybe it's a generational thing. If the people who you talked to are over 50 years old, they may not run in the same circles that refer to them as Eastborn or Westborn. The people who I know that refer to the two "downtowns" that way are in their 20's.

It's probably similar to the difference between "Midtown" and "Cass Corridor". Midtown is a reletively newer term unheard of years ago.

(Message edited by hudkina on August 26, 2007)
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Sharms
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Post Number: 23
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Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 12:00 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

When I was very young, my family lived in Inkster on Shadowlawn Drive just south(?) of Cherry Hill. I went to Avondale Elementary school. My family moved to Franklin in 1958, but I do remember something about Inkster, at least where I lived, becoming Dearborn Heights. I may be wrong, it was a long time ago.
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Jjaba
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Post Number: 5526
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Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 12:29 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

jjaba chimes in with Salina, a section of Dearborn. Anybody ever heard of it?

Is Camp Dearborn still owned by the City of Dearborn?

For jjaba's observation, the Middle Easterners in Dearborn and Detroit's Westside are well integrated into Detroit/Dearborn urban life. With pride in America, jjaba is glad we don't have the racial/cultural clashes that we see in England, France and Netherlands. Even in Canada, Toronto has such frictions.

Halal meat is served at Fordson HS lunchrooms and there's a Halal Mc Donalds in Dearborn. Considerations for Ramadan are made by commercial businesses also.

jjaba, Proudly Westside.
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Karl
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Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 12:44 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi Jjaba,

Yes, Salina - a well-known area of Dearborn.

Camp Dearborn is still owned by the city. I've often wondered: Is there anything anywhere in the USA similar to that place: apart from a city, owned for the residents? Same with Greenfield Village/ HF Museum, for that matter, tho not owned by the city. Not sure if it is still, but during its history has been in the top 10 tourist attractions in the USA.

Yes, thankfully you are correct - compared to Europe, Dearborn and its melting pot of nationalities is a model of harmony. Ruffled feathers and grumbling is about as bad as it gets - but who doesn't do that about their own relatives?
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Hudkina
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Post Number: 48
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Posted on Monday, August 27, 2007 - 12:46 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Up until the 60's the village of Inkster shared a border with the city of Dearborn. While portions of Dearborn TWP that had not been annexed by either municipality (or Detroit) lay to the north and to the south.

The village of Inkster included a portion located within Nankin TWP and a portion located within Dearborn TWP. Because it wasn't a city, the portion that was in Dearborn TWP was still technically "Dearborn TWP".

In the late 1950's because residents of Dearborn TWP feared that the city of Dearborn would continue to annex land, they sought to incorporate themselves. The plan for the new city would include all of the unincorporated portions of Dearborn TWP plus a portion of Dearborn TWP that was currently in the village of Inkster. Because of this, the village of Inkster started its own process of incorporation to "protect" its land.

Dearborn TWP was the first to submit the petition in March of 1960. Inkster submitted their petition two days later. In June of 1960, the creation of the city of Dearborn Heights was approved.

Obviously, the village of Inkster filed a lawsuit claiming that it was illegal for Dearborn TWP to "steal" land from the village. However, since Inkster was technically in Dearborn TWP and because the petition for Dearborn Heights was submitted first, Dearborn TWP won. The lawsuit was settled in April of 1963. Once the lawsuit was sorted out, Dearborn Heights officially became a city. Inkster became a city the following year.
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Lombaowski
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Post Number: 46
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Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 10:22 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

[quote]I briefly went through the East side of Saginaw the other day. THAT would be little saigon. Worse than I imagined.Ive seen areas of Flint that were better, by a mile[quote]

I've worked a lot in both cities in the bad neighborhoods and I'd agree the east side of Saginaw is worse than any part of Flint besides maybe the far NE side from Carpenter to MLK. The thing about Saginaw is that people really seem tense about just about everything.
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Meaghansdad
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Post Number: 102
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Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 12:37 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

If you people think Flint and Saginaw are rough, East St. Louis, Ill makes them look like Bloomfield Hills.

I was driving through there some years back and I, [who grew up on the far eastside of Detroit, and who is very comfortable in some of the rougher areas of the city], was afraid to get gas.
This was some years ago, so there mightve been some improvements, but man, this place was rough
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Craig
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Username: Craig

Post Number: 345
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 12:51 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I have a running argument with my buddy who is from the east side of Saginaw - which is worse... his old home or mine (west side of Detroit).

Re: Inkster cop killings... probably before many of us were out of school there was an incident where a family of criminals killed three policemen who were attempting an arrest. Tragic.

Re: Halal food in the Little D (ha!)... my favorite pizza place on Schaffer advertised halal pie. Knowing those guys it had the same pepperoni as the ones that I would order & eat (some of the best ever). Decent people on the east side - I was a minority for the second time in my life but I never felt anything but welcome (horns blaring at three in the morning was an unwelcome touch of home, though).
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Greenskye
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Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 1:46 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Craig, I was born and raised in Saginaw, and grew up on the east side; I am also an ex Detroit Police officer who patrolled the west side of Detroit. The east side of Saginaw is worse! There are parts of the east side of Saginaw where mail carriers will not deliver mail.

Hello to everyone-I've been reading the board for about three years and enjoy the commentary!
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Craig
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Post Number: 346
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Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 1:54 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Greenskye - thank you for the information, but I'm afraid that I'm going to have to bury this. Bury it deep so that a certain friend of mine has no additional ammo! Seeing as you're now a forum member I won't snipe at you by asking if you too went to see ? & the Mysterians every weekend (pride of Saginaw, right?).

Seriously, though, all things are relative. Although the town of Saginaw is down on its luck, too, overall I like it more than I do Detroit. We'll make a day trip of heading up to the zoo (right size for my little tribe), Fashion Square Mall, and dinner.
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Greenskye
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Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 2:49 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Craig- who are the Mysterians? Funny thing is, I've been renting a house in Inkster for the past year. I'm a couple blocks over from Dearborn Heights, so that doesn't really count since I'm north of Michigan Avenue! It's a nice, quiet neighborhood.

Have fun!
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Craig
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Post Number: 349
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Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 2:57 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Dude, are you kidding? "Question Mark and the Mysterians" of "96 Tears" fame? Probably the best export ever from Saginaw.
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Greenskye
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Posted on Thursday, September 06, 2007 - 3:11 pm: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Ok, I googled it. Before my time!
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Soomka1
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Post Number: 37
Registered: 02-2007
Posted on Friday, September 07, 2007 - 1:57 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hey Greenskye and Wsukid, can you tell me how my old neighborhood on Clair Street between Avondale and Parkwood is looking? That was the first house I remember. We lived there for two years until 1966 when we moved to Terry on the west side of Detroit. All I can remember is that the houses were tiny, but they couldn't have been more than 10 years old at the time. There weren't many garages. The main thing that impressed me there was that our neighbors Mitch & Dora would drive their big black Olds right up on the front lawn to wash it every week.
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Lombaowski
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Posted on Friday, September 07, 2007 - 5:50 am: Edit PostDelete PostMove Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

[quote]Craid said:Seriously, though, all things are relative. Although the town of Saginaw is down on its luck, too, overall I like it more than I do Detroit. We'll make a day trip of heading up to the zoo (right size for my little tribe), Fashion Square Mall, and dinner.[quote]

Just drive north on Washington from the zoo and take a right on Janes, left on Cherry, left on 6th, and right on Lapeer until you reach 675 north that will take you to the Fashion Square Mall. Saginaw is just a Detroit on a much smaller scale but the West side has started to fall on hard times as compared to what it was in the 80s (My grandparents lived there) and the nice part of Saginaw is the Township which is essentially a suburb.

I think Saginaw led the nation in aggravated assault and for the other guy think E. St Louis is any worse than Saginaw or Flint needs to check the crime stats. North side of Flint and East side of Saginaw are as rough as any neighborhoods in this country or South Africa.

As far as Inkster I have been there twice since the mid 80s and then it was the butt of the joke for it's white trash population but my most recent stop there in 2003 or 2004 was surprising. It has fallen on some pretty hard times compared to other suburbs for sure.