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Interview Summary

Ann Roach was one of the first African American students admitted to the University of Kentucky. In this interview she discusses her childhood in Cincinnati, Ohio and Lexington, Kentucky, including her family life, recreation, and church activities. Her parents owned restaurants, and she talks about their businesses and her family history. She talks about her early education in Lexington and how she came to be chosen as one of the six African American students admitted to UK in 1954.

Roach stopped attending UK in 1956 due to the racism and discrimination she faced at the university; she feared that her father would do something dangerous in retaliation. Roach describes some of the specific incidents of racism she encountered at UK from both students and faculty. She also talks about the people on campus who supported her, including fellow students as well as administrators like Dean Sarah Holmes. She talks about race relations in the wider Lexington community, and talks about the thriving Black community once located on Deweese Street.

Roach returned to the University of Kentucky in 1984. She talks about petitioning Kentucky Representative Scotty Baesler for assistance to attend college. She talks about the differences between her first experience at UK and her second, including the preparation she received from Ashland Oil aimed at minority students transitioning to college, being a non-traditional student, and more positive attitudes toward African American students at UK. She talks about her work as a social worker at the VA Hospital and Eastern State Hospital, and describes the discrimination she faced at both workplaces.

Interview Accession

2006oh089_af715

Interviewee Name

Ann Roach

Interviewer Name

Erica N. Johnson

Interview Date

2006-06-16

Interview Rights

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

Interview Usage

Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Interviews may be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, Special Collections, University of Kentucky Libraries.

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Roach, Ann Interview by Erica N. Johnson. 16 Jun. 2006. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

Roach, A. (2006, June 16). Interview by E. N. Johnson. University of Kentucky: The African American Experience Oral History Project. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.

Roach, Ann, interview by Erica N. Johnson. June 16, 2006, University of Kentucky: The African American Experience Oral History Project, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.





Persistent Link for this Record: https://kentuckyoralhistory.org/ark:/16417/xt70cf9j6b4s