Transatlantic Experiences and Perspectives of Black Germans of the Post-War Generation
Edited By Marion Kraft
Ways Out of Isolation (Ria Cheatom)
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Ways Out of Isolation
26. Ria Cheatom. Private property.
Many of the Black German children who were born in the first years after World War II were shoved into children’s homes. I was one of them, and I am proud of having carved out my way in society and of having found my place in the Black community. The decision to relate some aspects of my life here was made within the context of political and social changes that took place in Germany in the course of the past decades. It is in this ← 123 | 124 → context that, for me, this text is a contemporary document, a contribution to the aim of making the younger generations aware of a part of our history.
I don’t know anything about the first year of my life. I guess I lived with my biological mother in Brannenburg/Inn, in Bavaria, where I was born in 1947. For me, my story begins in Memmingen, in a Catholic children’s home in Lindenbad Street. The address is important, because in this small town there was also a Lutheran children’s home, in Untere Bachgasse 8, where I would live later. I was 1 year old when a social worker brought me to the Catholic children’s home. There was another Afro-German child, a boy, who was a year older than me. I did not register him consciously, but remember...
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