Faruq Z. Bey, local legend and icon of avant garde music in Detroit, has died. Bey was the leader of the group Griot Galaxy, a sprawling group into which dozens of musicians fell in and out between 1972 and the time it stabilized mid-decade and slowly distilled to a classic quintet around 1980.
Jefferson Avenue, for instance, was named for President Thomas Jefferson, who appointed the first Michigan territorial officials and was a good friend of Augustus Woodward. It was first surveyed in 1807 and named Main Street, but soon renamed for Jefferson. At its intersection with Griswold, it passes through the heart of the old cemetery of St. Anne's Church where the remains of Detroit's earliest inhabitants are buried.
Just thought I would forward this peek at an email I sent out to a website, http://www.soulofamerica.com/detroit-guide.phtml, that has written some history of Detroit which apparently has been picked up and repeated numerous times all over the internet. I call your attention to the first point where this site and numerous others repeatedly state that Gratiot is pronounced "Gray-sha." Oooo! THAT irritated me! Perhaps the French may have parlez-vous-ed it that way, but I never knew anyone from Detroit that said it like that when I was growing up...and I spent a lot of time in and around this street.
They also make a big deal out of Orchestra Hall without seeming to realize that it was only Paradise Theater for a few years of its life and began as — and then returned to — Orchestra Hall.
Anyway, in light of the recent discussions in the Detroit Memories Discussion Group about pronunciations of words (for example Detroit vs. Dee-troit), I thought you might at least find this one interesting. I was shocked at how many times this "Gray-sha" business has been repeated now all over the internet!