When highways come through, houses and memories go down. The boyhood home of Little Richard is going to be removed after authorities made the decision to build a highway through his old hometown of Macon, Georgia.
The announcement was made by Macon Mayor Robert Reichert this week. This is the same time that Richard is going to receive an honorary degree from Mercer University. He is now 80 years old, but still possesses the energy of a young man.
Little Richard’s real name is Richard Wayne Penniman. He grew up in Pleasant Hill, a section of Macon. I-75 is going to slice right through the community, but the memories will last forever. Don’t fret, the house will not be gone entirely. They are going to move it to a location near the Pleasant Hill Community garden and turn the home into a neighborhood resource center.
In the 1930s, when Richard was a child, his father was a bootlegger who also owned a nightclub. His mother was a member of the New Hope Baptist Church. Richard’s original name was supposed to be Ricardo, but somehow it was turned to Richard. Richard’s family was very religious and considered R&B to be “the devil’s music.” He was kicked out of the house at the age of 16 and went out to begin his singing career.
The rest is music history.