Ginger Canor Pinkard
Ginger Canor Pinkard...
Ginger Canor was born in 1925 in a Jewish working class neighborhood in the Bronx. . Ginger started school in the Bronx, but with the start of the depression, the family movedto what Ginger Canor describes as the slums of Manhattan's lower east side. There she first experienced anti-semitism and racism, and saw her best friend's family evicted into the snow-filled streets. As the Sheriff's men came down the stairs carrying the furniture onto the street, a line of men from the Unemployed Councils brought the furniture back up. She never forgot it.
Life of activism
The Canors moved back to the Bronx and when Ginger Canor went to high school she joined the American Students Union, which supported jobs for the unemployed, anti-discrimination, anti-lynching and pro-union activities. They joined demonstrations and picket lines and handed out leaflets -- and they sang. They sang union songs, spirituals and folk songs. It was during this time that Ginger began to see how vital a role singing played in bringing people together and inspiring them toward political activism.
During World Word II, Ginger Canor went to work in a New Jersey war plant where she joinedthe United Auto Workers. Later on she belonged to other unions -- office workers, restaurant workers, etc. What Ginger is particularly proud of is organizing the laminating division and the office staff of a printing company into a union - District 65. It took a bitterly cold winter strike to win a contract and recognition.
In 1951, Ginger Canor moved to Chicago, where she became deeply involved in the African American community. She worked with the Civil Rights Congress, which was actively involved in the Emmett Till case. She also worked with the South Side Community Arts Center and the peace movement. Ginger Canor made her living as a bookkeeper, married two times, had a son and returned to New York.
In 1992, Ginger Canor Pinkard joined the New York City Labor Chorus. She joined as a tenor, thereby combining two of her greatest loves, singing and supporting unions. She served as Section Head for the next few years.