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East Palo Alto fires linked to wiring, combustible materials

Two house fires displaced 14 people

Two recent house fires that displaced two East Palo Alto families were caused by faulty wiring and combustible material left too close to a water heater, according to Menlo Park fire officials.

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Like this comment
Posted by Dennis Anderson
a resident of another community
on Mar 11, 2014 at 11:45 am

I am reminded of 1948, when my older brother would come home from his high-school summer job helping build houses in Belle Haven -- east Menlo Park -- and lament, "I know I'm building slums." The material and technique used in building those homes were inferior and inexpensive, so they could be sold at big profit to families wanting to escape the dangers of Hunters Point and Oakland.
My brother's prophecy proved true, and within 10 years, once lily-white Menlo Park had its own ghetto of poverty and despair. At that time, East Palo Alto was a solid community of hard-working Asian-Americans and lower-middle class whites. Eventually, poverty and despair moved across Willow Road and by 1958, we had Ravenswood High and de facto segregation.


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 11, 2014 at 1:30 pm

Hmmm is a registered user.

Dennis - since you know a lot about the local history, how come you didn't mention that so many African Americans and Asians weren't *allowed* to buy homes west of 101?


Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Mar 11, 2014 at 1:32 pm

Hmmm is a registered user.

Dennis - I forgot to add - did you read the cause of the first fire? It had to do w/an illegal addition to the house, which likely has nothing to do with the original house's construction.


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