Author Visit: Black and White Like You and Me
Even in 1960s Detroit, race isn't everything.
Tom Daniels and "Cookie" Marsh will be the first to tell you that race isn't everything. But it did shape the way they experienced the world growing up in Detroit in the 1950s and 60s. Tom "Cookie" Marsh grew up in a black neighborhood on Detroit's west side. Tom Daniels grew up in a mixed, working-class neighborhood on Detroit's east side.
Both men grew up in strict households where they "always got what we needed, and sometimes what we wanted" and both saw their city, their country, and their world transform around them through the Civil Rights movement, riots, and the Viet Nam War.
But sometimes parallel lines intersect.
As each man tells his story, it is apparent that race isn't just "black and white" but it is part of what makes their friendship extraordinary. Their experiences will show you that race made for huge differences in their experiences, while, in spite of race, there are also touching similarities that made it possible for two men, in their older years, to overcome decades of racial turbulence of their upbringing to become lifelong friends.
Follow Tom and Cookie. Hear about their lives, their upbringing, their successes and regrets growing up in black and white Detroit - and how when it boils down to it, the things that are truly important are actually black and white, like you and me.
Thomas "Whitey" Daniels
Born in 1948 in Detroit, Michigan, I've lived in the metro Detroit area my whole life. My nickname is "Whitey" ... now before you make a snap judgment about that name, it has nothing to do with race. Originally it had to do with the Bowery Boys. As the name continued to follow me, it evolved into the color of my skin. I am two shades darker than an albino!
Thomas "Cookie" Marsh
Born in 1951 in Laurel, Mississippi, I moved to Detroit, Michigan with my family as an infant and I've been here ever since. My nickname is "Cookie" because when I was little, I would charm my great aunt into making cookies for me. If you're in the city of Detroit and you mention Cookie Marsh, most people will know who I am.