Oak Cliff freedman’s town receives historical marker


What do you know about Oak Cliff’s Tenth Street Historic District?

The Texas Historical Commission would have you know more. Settled by former slaves following the American Civil War, it is considered “Oak Cliff’s most important African-American neighborhood,” according to Preservation Dallas.

This weekend, the district will receive a historic marker via the state historical commission’s “untold marker” program.

An unveiling of the Tenth Street freedman’s town historic marker and a ribbon cutting for the N.W. Harlee Childhood Center is at 10 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 17 at 1216 E. Eighth.

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  • This is not my article, only my personal comments made and based on a lifetime of intent interest. So you see sir I am an Oak Cliff native that has been blessed with a keen memory. More specifically it may be of little interest to you but there was a time when persons of all backgrounds blended well and shared stories. One of those relationships was between my mother and a desendant of a freed Miller Chattel slave. As far as quoting sources, I guess you’d have to be there. Obviously you were not, knowing that your brand of smarmy pretentiousness simply didn’t exist in my Oak Cliff at that time. There are plenty of source materials concerning the Miller Family holdings including chattle in The Dallas Public Library. Please take your race bait and fish in someone else’s pond.
    Smokey Burns

  • Smokey, please share your documentation when making an assertion of this kind about my neighborhood. Where did you hear this story, and what primary resources can you cite to prove that it is true? Who is the descendant you reference, and who was the freedman that person is descended from? By the way, the photograph that accompanies this story is in the 400 block, nowhere near the freedman’s town.

  • Please follow up on this Freedman’s Town origins. It’s history runs deep and will surprise many. The town sits on property given by the owner and willing emancipation participant of the slaves that worked that land. He built homes and helped with infrastructure as most of his prior chattel became freedman and women and continued to work for what many called there friend. I remember a first hand tale delivered by a defendant of one of the freed. Don’t leave this important and positive story go untold.

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