Renne, Louise: Hippies in the Haight


Louise Renne: First of all the Haight in general certainly at that time, and I think to this day, had a lot of families and a lot of families who have been there a very, very long time. As a matter of fact a lot of the families that did live in the Haight were quite upset about this influx of hippies and drugs, and I think for good reason because what they said was that before the influx of hippies and all the tourists and everything were a lot of family-owned businesses and you could feel very comfortable walking down Haight street which many families did not and frankly many families did move out. Now that said, there are pockets and pockets of the Haight for example in some of the area where Willie Brown and his wife lived – the upper Haight – there were and there are to this day, many, many families who lived there. Do they go down to Haight Street? I doubt it. There’s still some places they would go, but where some of the drug dealing goes on – there clearly was a lot of drug dealing going on, and there is to this day – you just don’t go down there. But still there’s still good feeling about the Haight. On Belvedere where we lived families and neighbors were very close, very tight and kinda regarded the drug dealing as “Okay it’s going on, but we’re not part of the scene.” So my recollection of the Haight was that there was almost two Haights. There’s the actual Haight where a lot of the young people dealing drugs hanging out were, and then there was the rest of the Haight which is a lot of families and I guess still politically correct to say more stable environment, and I think that may be true even today. But there was clearly a change, a [sea] change when the hippies came in the 60’s. And although we were part of that [sea] change, we weren’t part of the drug scene.


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The Moscone oral history interviews are part of the George Moscone Collection, MSS 328.

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