Albion Interactive History / Holland Park

Albion Interactive History

Albion Interactive History / Buildings / City of Albion

Holland Park, 1975

Block +
US Census Block # 33-105

Description by Charles W. Jones in 1976 Annual Report. “Another contribution to Albion that was completed in 1975 is one that gives me a great deal of personal satisfaction, Holland Park. This multi-purpose facility is slated for possible expansion in 1976 as its is already utilized to capacity. Just as the man whose name it bears, this park will serve the community with dignity and stability.”

Located on the west side of town, bounded by Cass St., Albion St., Michigan St.,and Dalrymple St. Today the park has playground equipment, pavilion, andbasketball courts. The park also marks a significant chapter in Albion’s racialhistory. Near the center of the park is the space where the WestWard School formerly stood.

As black immigration to Albion increased, WestWard became a segregated school for black students. This continued untilministers and parents successfully forced the school board to close West Ward.

Adjacent to the park and former school, are the ruins of the GaleManufacturing Company. While students attended the West Ward School, GaleManufacturing was in full operation. Residents recount how sometimes the smokeand ash fell so thickly from Gale, that someone who stood near the school couldhardly see in front of themselves.

Today a plaque marks the location honoringCouncilman Robert Holland who was instrumental in closing the school. The plaquecontains this poignant dedication,

“He dealt with the physical West Ward inthis city in order that others were free to deal with the psychological WestWard’s in their minds.”

Source: Isaac Kremer, 2001

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