Turner Grill

Emma Turner

Emma Turner standing and wearing in a cardigan and dress.Man in hat and coat seated at a part with glass in hand. Woman standing behind bar holding a bottle. Second man in suit and tie stands beside woman and they have a dog between them.

The Building

A street scene with a two story building with three doorways and a small, one story addition to the right. Well dressed people stand on the sidewalk outside of a building. A sign hangs above them and reads, "Sandwich Shop/Royal Crown Cola" Bulldozer and two men remove building rubble.

watercolor of imagined interior of Turner Grill with blue checkered table clothes and an L shaped bar.watercolor of an old jukebox, a record, and some shoes.watercolor of three dishes of food: mac and cheese, green beans, and fried chicken. A bottle of RC cola is to the right.watercolor of a Coney Island hotdog with ingredients around it.Facebook post by Paul Smith "She has the best chili and chili dogs in town. I think around 1953, 54, you could get a cup of chili and a big RC cola for .25"Facebook post by Paul Smith "Mary Ashby, I remember she has great hamburgers and there were boiled eggs and pickle pig feet in a big jar. There were about 3 restaurants in a row and we would hang out in each of them before going to Hollywood to dance night away'

Student Feedback on the Process

“The entire process here was totally new to me. Research topics in my classes have rarely engaged with the active community and place I live in. When I was walking by Constitution Square two weeks ago, I stopped and could see exactly where the Turner Grill would have been, and it was such a strong sadness to know that there was this erasure that was visible (if you knew the absence). I don’t usually get to connect physically and bodily to course material this way.”

“I think the study of local history is important in any context, Germany and Danville included, as occupying a space can be perpetuating false narratives about marginalized communities. In the context of this class, working and visualizing one’s skills to advocate for a suppressed history to gain a platform perfectly coincides with previous activism movements discussed in our class previously.”

“I learned how important small details are and that things most people don’t think are important are actually important for history.”

“I found the combination of the class and local history to be extremely interesting, because I was able to apply the information that we learned in class to other (local) topics. It really helped me expand my thinking on what at first just seemed like my “college town”, but it’s now just my town. I am looking forward to getting more involved in the community and of course continuing with my path of activism.”