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Audio recording clip of interview with Sarann Knight Preddy by Claytee D. White, June 5, 1997

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Part of an interview with Sarann Knight Preddy conducted by Claytee D. White on June 5, 1997. Preddy recalls her pleasant residence in Hawthorne, the opening of the Moulin Rouge, and meeting entertainers as a keno dealer.

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Sarann Knight Preddy oral history interviews, 1997 June 05, 1998 March 11. OH-01508. [Audio recording] Oral History Research Center, Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University of Nevada, Las Ve


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I was president of the NAACP and I did a lot of traveling. And of course I made a lot of money. We bought a big house there and the first house we bought we lived next door to the banker, the president of the bank. And most people cautioned us about, "You know it's dangerous to live over there, because you're black. And people might do this, that and the other." And I remember when we moved in, it was a nice big house and we had big picture windows. I had that put in and we were doing some things and I didn't have any curtains over the windows. People would come by to tell me that, "Oh, don't you think you need to hang something up. There might be a drive-by shooting." But I didn't pay that any attention because I found out that the people were very nice. So it was quite and experience in Hawthorne. I did commute back and forth to Las Vegas because in 1955 was when they built the Moulin Rouge and I was living in Hawthorne. But I came back and stayed a whole month during the opening because my father was one of the ones that helped to build the Moulin Rouge. When I came back it was so exciting to see all the people and the entertainers because when I worked at the Cotton Club, I met all the entertainers who were coming to Las Vegas during that time because they could not stay on the Strip. So when they finished working on the Strip, they came to the Cotton Club. So when I was dealing Keno, I was a Keno writer, I wrote Keno for Freedom Fund Banquet hosted by Hawthorne, NV, NAACP in the late 1950s. Sarann Preddy served as president of the Hawthorne Branch of the NAACP at this time. Attendees represented the African American middle class in Hawthorne. 15 all the people who — like the Mills Brothers, and the Ink Spots, and Sammy Davis, and Pearl Bailey, and you name 'em — all the people that was coming here during that time came to West Las Vegas. Most of them lived in West Las Vegas. Sammy Davis used to live about four blocks down the street from the Cotton Club. And they had a little motel called the Charles Motel, right around the corner and a lot of them lived there. So I had a chance to meet these people and know them on a first hand basis because when you're writing Keno, it's almost a personal contact. People hand you the ticket and you give it back and you're dealing and you learn these people. We used to have parties in the back and they would participate. Like the Treniers would come and play and they were so much fun. And everybody would just have a lot of fun.