Getting in touch with Suffolk

Published 7:51 pm Wednesday, August 10, 2011

For the past two weeks, I have been buried in old newspapers from the ‘70s and ‘80s for my research on our North Suffolk series that runs every Sunday.

And I think I have learned more about the city I live in during the past two weeks than six years of living in Newport News.

I’m only two weeks into my assignment to cover North Suffolk’s history, and I continued to be amazed by all the things I’m finding out.

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When I first starting sorting through the old documents, I admittedly underestimated how much information I had to sort through, especially for my research on the 1974 merger.

But as I got further into my research, I found Suffolk has such an interesting history that I couldn’t find out enough.

I’m sure the rest of the staff at the Suffolk News-Herald got sick of hearing about all the new details I found out about the city as I sorted through piles of old newsprint.

Then, last week, the first that I spent in my new home in Suffolk, I found out the land on which I now live came very close to becoming Portsmouth on more than one occasion throughout the years.

It was so strange to read through articles in which Mayor James F. Hope was saying Suffolk couldn’t let go of the Bennett’s Creek because it was vital to the city’s growth. (Boy, did he know what he was talking about!)

But it’s even more bizarre to think about Harbour View being in Portsmouth or even to think about it not existing at all.

It’s been amazing reading through and writing about the city’s history, and it’s almost like traveling back in time.

It’s made me feel more in touch with the city I work in and now call home. Even though I’m not a Suffolk native, I feel like part of the city, and I’m loving the way it feels.

Every resident should take the time to learn about the city’s rich history, and I hope that publishing these articles on North Suffolk will help residents feel more in touch with their surroundings.