Baxter Leach

My children walked with me in the march.”

A native of Mississippi, Baxter Leach came north as did many of his generation — for the promise and hope of a better life that a city could perhaps provide. Once in Memphis, he found work with the Sanitation Department was in some measure better than the cotton fields he had left behind, yet a far cry from what most would consider fair and equitable labor. Mr. Leach experienced both the sting of tear gas during strike violence and the subtle kindness of residents who left curbside gifts for him and fellow workers during the holiday season. Retired from the Sanitation Department, he is the proprietor of Melanie’s, a popular soul food restaurant at 1070 North Watkins St. in Memphis. He invites you to come by; call 901-278-0751 to learn what’s on the menu.