Twenty Dollar Bill


One woman in my life that I adore, her courage and perseverance has taught me how to be a strong African American woman. Dorothy May Ruffin (Now Evege) was born in Mobile, Alabama and migrated to Akron, Ohio in the 1960s. If you're wondering, the famous musician David Ruffin from the music group "The Temptations." My great-grandmother is Creole and my great grandfather is African American, they raised my grandma in Whynot, Mississippi. 
The racism down south during this time was terrible, she remembers being separated from the white kids, and the other black kids were always crude because she was lighter than them.

Fast forward, my grandmother traveled to Akron, Ohio with two kids, one she was pregnant with at the time, a twenty dollar bill, and a suitcase. She became the first African American woman to run a nursing home in Akron, OH and this was an honor because as a Light skinned African American woman in the south it was hard to do anything with all the racism and discrimination.

Her story inspires me because she overcame her obstacles and became very successful in the long run. My grandma is my idol. 

Place(s): Akron, Ohio; Mobile, Alabama; Whynot, Mississippi
Year: 1967

– Imani Evege

Relationship:  Grandchild of im/migrant Grandchild of im/migrant