The History of Flint
The history of Flint is perhaps as long and complex as the federal bureaucracy. OK,
was the first to settle in the area and established his lucrative trade here. His trading post
first tavern in the Flint area was established. Contrary to popular belief this oasis in the
desert was not Paddy McGee’s, but Todd’s Tavern, founded in 1830’s. Although the
Things ran pretty smoothly, but the city didn’t boom until the entrepreneur William
Durant came to town and established Flint as the vehicle city, with his production of
carriages. “Carriage town” as the area was termed still stands today. It is one of few
done away with when women came to town. But we still have “the hole” where the first sit
down strike in the nation occurred…Oh, wait, they just tore that down didn’t they? Well at
least there’ s still AutoWorld…I forgot, that’s going down, too, isn’t it? Thanks to the Irish
folk we still have one historic place left…Italia Gardens. (Just Kidding).
Around this time William Durant began to notice a new up and coming gizmo, known
Ford, William Durant turned the carriage town into the horseless carriage town.
When Flint boomed, the social life went right with it. Dort highway sprung up and
there were now “hussies” on every street corner, not silver bells, as the carol leads you to
believe. There were now a whopping three watering stations in the city, but nothing
prepare the townsfolk for what was to come next. A young desperado strolled into town,
some hotshot who just graduated from some Irish school in the midwest. He bought, and
converted an old, run down place into a location that was to be treasured and revered for
several generations to come. This was not your average Cheers. This was a full-fledged,
Paddy McGees. This was the good life.
remain, Dort Highway and Italia Gardens. And some other Irish place on Flushing Road.
The City Government
The City Council The Judicial Branch
Treasury Department City Clerk
Zoning Committee Internal Revenue Service
Public Works and Utilities
Building and Safety Inspection Committee
Waste Distribution Center
Parks and Recreation
Community Development Office
own set of goals and duties to perform. The Mayor, Woodrow Stanley, is the head of the
operation. He has a lot of power over the committees and departments in the city. He gets
to appoint several key figures.
The Ombudsman, Daryl Baker, acts as the mayor’s voice to the people and the
departments when the mayor can not be present. Along with these duties, the ombudsman
also conducts investigations to determine that city services are being delivered properly and
It is the job of the city clerk, Louis Hawkins to see that all the “busy-work” is done for
both the mayor and the ombudsman, as well as any other city official.
The City Council holds meetings which suggest and enact rules and zoning disputes, as
advised by the zoning boards. See the City Council Meeting Section. Each member
oversees his district and voices the complaints of the people of that area. The City Council
members are elected by the voters in each district. The councilmember from my district,
the 6th, is John W. Northrup.
The City Council Meetings, a.k.a., lash out at the City Government hour
as most meetings do, with the call to order. To get it out of the way, the meeting was re-
arranged so that the award for the soccer team would be first. We received a certificate of
recognition from the members of the council and were commended for our achievement.
After this was done, the meeting officially began.
that Flint is not the biggest of cities, but the room was virtually empty. Even some of the
there to speak in favor of granting a liquor license to their “shop and rob”, as Winchester
before their proposal was called.
The meeting began with a review of all former proposals; those which the council had
already voted upon. The floor was open to discuss the proposals, but no one stood up.
After this was done, all new proposals, those which hadn’t been finalized, or those which
were previously postponed were called. Again the floor was open for anyone to speak.
This time a group from the outskirts of Dort Highway, a.k.a. the drag, spoke to get action
on a particular dump zone in the neighborhood. As much as the councilpeople tried to
convince these people that they were working on the problem, the people would have none
of it. Each and every one stood up and commented on the pile. Some proposed 24 hour
police patrols in the area. Others proposed that the city should install cameras to catch the
These people proposed re-zoning the building to get rid of the shop.
Each and every issue had to be voted upon, no matter how crazy the proposal. A few of
the more outlandish include: a liquor license for a private residence and granting a liquor
handled the matter recommend approval for the latter. Fortunately, Northrup brought out
the point that the city had fought hard to rid the store of its license and it would seem silly
to give it right back. The council then voted to postpone their vote until further
information was gathered.
After endless proposals the meeting was turned to future endeavors. This included a
proposal to mount cameras in various locations throughout the city, to deter and monitor
council,…you guessed it…postponed the debate until further information was gathered.
Another future proposal concerned forcing landlords to pay a lump sum for the removal of
trash, from the curb, after an eviction. I did not agree with this proposal, and it is
discussed in my interview with Councilman Minore.
Councilman Jack Minore did not plan on becoming a city councilman until late in life.
He was studying to become an architect, but then realized one day that he loved to design
homes, but he hated to measure and count parts. This is a very big problem if one is to
become an architect, so he figured he needed to find another career. He then decided that
he wanted to impact the community in some way, so he chose to run for office and won.
When asked about his major concern, Mr. Minore overwhelmingly believed that crime
was his overriding concern. He was a big proponent for the use of cameras. Financial
despair. When people are desperate, they will do almost anything.
I then brought up the point that I believed that the way they were handling the landlord
issue was wrong and unjust. Councilman Minore backed his position stating that it may
not be right, it may not be fair, but it is the best way to go handle the issue. I asked him
why it was such a big problem, and he responded by stating that several landlords own
homes within the city and live outside the boundary. They only come to town to clean up
after an eviction and end up throwing the trash on the curb, no matter how large a pile, and
how large a mess it makes. I responded that my father owns a few homes within a three
block radius of our own, and he, too places the trash on the curb after an eviction. I
pointed out that most people are evicted because they are slobs or behind on rent. It is
both criteria for eviction, but he had just gone through a divorce, so we were very lenient
already lost several months rent in the process, and to h