St. Petersburg, a city surrounded by water and known for its resort lifestyle, had no pools where African Americans could swim until 1954. That changed when Jennie Hall, an 85 year old white woman from Montana, stepped forward to help the African American community build a pool. With a rather startling and unannounced moment in front of St. Petersburg’s city council in June 1953, Jennie Hall proclaimed she would be donating $25,000 for a swimming pool to serve the African American community. To prove her seriousness, she wrote a check for $10,000 on the spot and promised an additional $15,000. The City Council, somewhat cowed and taken aback, agreed to match the gift with $35,000 of city funds.