Taking pictures for this project has been the easy part to this point. Stand, point, and shoot makes the picture part of this project easy. Gathering pertinent details that are accurate and relevant has been the difficult part to this point. One person who has relatives who lived in the area of Alsuma said he never received the three e-mails I have sent him to this point in the project. Message delivery says that his e-mailbox received the e-mails to the address I sent them to. I verified the address with the Tulsa Community College e-mail list of teachers. Through placing four phone calls to both his work number and his cell number which he provided me weeks ago we have spoken on several occasions. Each time he has told me that his relative is interested and that he would get back with me to arrange the interview to no fruition. Two other possible sources do not want to talk anymore as they have a reluctance to the story turning into a “race thing” even with my reassurance to the contrary.
I have searched survey records, library records, fire records, airport, and airplane records; all to no avail with any information. I want to know about what made the community a community. The lifeblood that coursed through the vibrancy of a community is what I have been searching for. A continuation in the history which created Tulsa.
I have completed one interview successfully and with an invitation to return for more conversation. We are also planning a drive through Alsuma both for a memory trigger for Jim Hardcastle as well as for me to learn more about the locations of stores, churches, and adding to my growing list of names who lived there when Mr. Hardcastle lived there in the late 1930’s and into the early 1950’s.
The archives hold stories which seem to have perpetuated themselves as they are told with and without personal knowledge or actuality. The information has not changed, neither has place; rather it is slowing ebbing away before greater detail can be fleshed out. Time will tell whether or not the story broadens out into a story into the days of life for Alsuma.