Ethnic Memory Landscapes and Urban Renewal in a New England Mill Town

Anna Kirchmann, Eastern Connecticut State University

The urban renewal, which unfolded from the early 1950s to the end of the 1970s, coincided with the gradual collapse of the industrial base in a New England mill town of Willimantic, CT. As a result of the renewal, a large part of the multi-ethnic working-class downtown was physically destroyed. The ethnic groups struggled to respond to the challenges of urban change and economic decline amid the turbulent 1960s and 70s. They made conscious efforts to recreate and reaffirm their identity through the deliberate construction of nostalgic ethnic memory landscapes.

No extended abstract or paper available

 Presented in Session 207. Migration and Mobility in Individual and Collective Memory