Jacobs, Lionel and Stella
This interview was recorded at Lionel and Stella Jacobs’ house in Tucson, Arizona on November 29th, 2017. It covers the following themes:
A brief overview of Lionel and Stella’s family histories.
Lionel’s childhood in Tucson’s barrio, the Jacobs family’s feed store business.
Stella’s move to Tucson at the age of 11, picking cotton in Marana, learning English.
Lionel and Stella’s work experiences during middle and high school: newspapers, cleaning bars, cotton, retail, selling cantaloupes, playing music for miners in Globe.
An overview of Lionel’s post-high school career.
Stella’s experience in the first desegregated class at John Spring; teenage extracurriculars like church and folklorico dance.
Commuting; buses and the importance of walking—feeling safe while walking alone. Leaving the Jacobs Assay Office open after hours so strangers could use the bathroom.
Neighborhood and community, especially relating to pregnancy and new parents.
A few threads about Urban Renewal, mental maps of the city, and home ownership.
A detailed description of the Menlo Park neighborhood in the 1950s.
Stella’s post-high school career, including dating, marriage, and children.
Lionel and Stella’s description of building and financing their own home in Arroyo Chico, with a discussion of credit, loans, banks, and downtown department stores, and a few closing thoughts on Urban Renewal.