For our first survey in quite a while, we went back to the beginning of The Brooklyn Board and reissued this survey about where and when we lived in Brooklyn, and when and why we left. Our intention was to allow our "1998" audience to share this interesting data with us, and the response was very good. In only a week we received 129 usable responses, significantly faster than the rate last year, when it took us two weeks to receive 97 responses. This turnout highlights the ongoing popularity of the board. Several enthusiastic people provided more than one response. In such cases, only the first was accepted.
Overall, the results seem to mimic those of the first survey, with some minor but interesting differences. A few new questions were added this time around.
The total number of unique, usable responses was 129.
The average of the span of years of people living in Brooklyn was 1947 through 1971, which extends the first survey's result (1949-1971) by two years. The earliest year anyone reported living in Brooklyn was 1928, while last year someone reported living in Brooklyn as early as 1922. As expected, there were those who reported 1998 as the year they left. The average number of years you lived in Brooklyn was very similar to last year's result (22): 21.5.
The neighborhood breakdown was as follows:
|East New York||9||7%|
Those neighborhoods not listed above (Brooklyn Heights, Marine Park, etc.) were not represented in the response set.
How old were you when you left Brooklyn?
|Age||Count||Younger than 12
||12 - 20
||21 - 30
||31 - 40
||41 - 50
||Older than 50
What were the reasons you left Brooklyn?
(Multiple responses were allowed, so the sum of the percentages exceeds 100.)
|A Better Life||58||45%|
|Crime/Lack of Safety||25||20%|
|Educational Opportunities (i.e. better schools)||37||29%|
|Family Obligations (parents/marriage/divorce/etc.)||24||19%|
|General Deterioration of the Neighborhood||32||25%|
|Hated City Life||13||10%|
|Just Needed A Change||16||12%|
When you left Brooklyn, were you sure that you'd never live there again?
When you left Brooklyn, did you leave behind any family?
Which, if any, of the following expressions would be closest to describing the feeling you had on the day you finally left Brooklyn for good?
||It's been a long time coming!
||So long, I hate to have to leave ya!
||I'll be back...
||I'll never love anyplace more than this...
||None of the above
Thanks again to those who participated. Apparently, putting words into people's mouths was not a good idea, judging by the "None of the Above" responses to the last question. The enormous number of you who left family behind makes clear not only that your roots were well planted in Brooklyn, but that your need to leave (and therefore sever your lives from those roots) must've been somewhat compelling.