Another incident took place in Scarsdale while Baba and Ivy Duce were seated in private discussing matters: (July 1952).
Just then the Negro cook, Alberta, walked into the room with a letter in her hands and interrupted the conversation with, “Baba, I would like to show you my children,” so she pulled out some Kodak pictures to show him. Suddenly he started making motions from her to me and back again. We stared at each other, wondering what this was all about. Then he dictated the answer and Rano said:
“Baba wants both of you to shake hands.”
This seemed very strange, because we had known each other since she had cooked for Elizabeth during Gramercy Park days. However, we warmly shook hands and Baba seemed satisfied. It was not until the past few years that it occurred to me this clasping of one black hand in one white one symbolized Baba’s archetypal act wherein he reaffirmed the brotherhood of the races.
Later it was found out that Scarsdale was a terminus of the underground railroad set up to help slaves escape the plantations in the South and migrate to the North. (1)
(1) This excerpt is from Ivy Duce’s book, How a Master Works. Regarding the ensuing civil rights movement during the 1960s in America, it was later discovered that Westchester County (near Scarsdale) was a terminus of the underground railroad during the Civil War (and before the war). It had a Black community living along side of a White community for a hundred years or more.
Lord Meher, American ed., Bhau Kalchuri, Vol. 11, p. 3879.