Homeless advocate, Mother Georgia King (seated) and Dwayne A. Jones Construction Company co-partner and brother of Dwayne, Maurice Jones, dropped in on the open house event held Saturday, February 22, 2020 at one of the three built “Tiny Homes” models. C. Story and Pictures by Dr. Yvonne D. Nelson Dwayne A. Jones said he and his two brothers loved growing up in the Orange Mound community where he still lives today. “When we were growing up we used to play football at our friend’s houses. We played box hockey and other games in the park. We grew up in a neighborhood environment. A lot of people that we knew have moved away. Their parents have passed away and they’ve let the houses go for whatever reason. Now there are vacant lots, a lot of boarded up, and some burnt up homes. It’s just not the same. The children growing up in the community today are getting a different feel for the neighborhood than my brothers and I did growing up here.” Dwayne is on a mission to change the future of his historic Orange Mound community. The history of the area goes back to the 1850s when owners of the Deaderick Plantation sold a tract of land to a wealthy developer and created a low-cost subdivision for African Americans to build homes on. Those homes were built on very narrow tracts of land only wide enough to hold “Shot-Gun” type homes known for “being able to open the front and back doors and see all the way through the house from either end. Being that the original lots were so narrow, traditional homes could not be built on them and people began to abandon them when they couldn’t attain or afford to attain adjacent land to expand on. The concept of the “tiny-house” didn’t just hit the scene. Many owners of larger homes have downsized to smaller spaces as changes in their lives have warranted the same. Some tiny-houses are built on trailers for mobility, but Jones had another idea. He builds his tiny-houses on narrow tracts of land like those in the Orange Mound community in Memphis, TN. Building a tiny-house can be just as costly as building any other size house since you still have the same components to build, just in smaller portions. Jones’ brother Maurice helps reduce the cost of labor by providing sweat equity for his share of the partnership. “This may not be the home for everybody, but it is the perfect home for somebody,” said Jones while standing on the doorstep of one D. of his homes currently for sale speaking to a small group of curious home shoppers during an open house event. while . “I’ve been here. I’m going to stay here and I’m going to continue to build here.” To learn more about the DAJ Construction Company, call Dwayne A. Jones at (901) 210.7885 or email dwayne@dwayneajones.com 28

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