Buffalo News Reporter Mike Beebe visited with the 150 families as they "started over down South"; that is, moved from Western New York to Shreveport, La. The men were all looking for work after being laid off from the General Motors foundry in Tonawanda.
Beebe wrote a five-part series, several installments of which are spotlighted here:
News series to follow workers from GM foundry to Sun Belt (April 27, 1984)
"What would it be like in a new job in a new part of the country? How easy would it be to pull up your roots and transplant them to the Sun Belt? Would Buffalonians ... be welcome in Louisiana? These are the questions that News Reporter Mike Beebe will attempt to answer in a human and often touching series calling 'Starting Over Down South.' "
Transplanted GM employees pick up pieces of a new life (April 29, 1984)
"'We'll give the place a try,' says Mary Zulewski, who traveled to Shreveport last week from Hamburg to visit her husband, Tom, and look for a new house. 'We've known all our lives -- our home, our friends, and our family back home -- but we're going to give it a try.' "
Culture shock, loneliness are facts of Shreveport life (April 30, 1984)
" 'This is a lot cleaner, you're not always breathing foundry dust. ... But there are a lot of guys down here, willing to breathe that dust and grime to be home with their families.' "