B D E F K L M N P T W

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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Ray, Corine E.
Biographical note: Corine Ray was lifelong resident of Murray, Kentucky. Her father was George Richardson. She married James Ray on August 26, 1927. She was a member of the Washington Street Church, where she sang in the choir, served as secretary for twenty-five years and founded the “Sunshine Band”.
Description: Corine Ray describes life in Murray, Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. She discusses family life, church involvement and her marriage. She describes how her family survived during the Great Depression and how her husband searched to find work. She recalled that he made 50 cents one day and returned with a steak, potatoes, buttermilk, flour and one onion. She also recalled receiving milk tickets for her first child. Ray remembered that coal was scarce and people would wait by the train tracks for fallen coal from passing freight trains.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Bates, Mary
Date of interview: 1979 November 14
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH121
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Humphreys, Edna (part 1)
Biographical note: Edna Humphreys was born on February 23, 1907 to Robert Walter Henderson and Tammy B. Campbell Henderson of Graves County, Kentucky. She had six siblings and her father died before the last child was born. Her father was a sharecropper that grew tobacco.
Description: Edna Humphreys describes her life in rural Graves County, Kentucky. She describes the process of growing tobacco and the numerous chores associated with sharecropping. She recalled that school was only in session for six months because many of the children worked during planting and harvest season. She remembered her family singing and playing music as a means of entertainment. She discusses childhood plying games, attending parties and dances, making feather beds and sewing quilts with patterns passed down from generation to generation. She tells of a family storm shelter that contained canned goods and other items needed in case of a tornado or other emergency. She remembers a cow and a small patch of land to grow tobacco were given to her father by the owner of the farm to assist with family expenses. Humphreys also recalls how the United States government contracted her husband to grow hemp during the period between First and Second World War for the use of making rope. She mentions how the Great Depression greatly affected her family and when the government introduced DDT to farms in the county.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Murray, Nicolette
Date of interview: 1980 October 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH114
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Allbritten, Neva Grey (part 2)
Biographical note: Neva Grey Allbritten was native of Murray, Kentucky. Her mother was originally from Tennessee and her father from Kentucky. As a child, she helped her father at his store and later sold vending and cigarette machines. She graduated valedictorian at Murray High School and received an academic scholarship to attend Murray State Teachers College. She attended college briefly, but dropped out because of health issues. She was a member of the First Christian Church of Murray, where she taught bible school, played piano and sang in the church choir. Allbritten sold war bonds at the City Bank during the Second World War. In her later years she was involved with the Women’s Club and served as president of the club from 1961 to 1962.
Description: Neva Grey Allbritten describes life in Murray, Kentucky during the early half of the 20th century. She describes attending school and church, working at her father’s store, attending social and community activities and events during her childhood and young adulthood. She discusses her family history, as well as detailed descriptions of her home and family life in Murray. She mentions that Murray was originally named Spring Hill due to all the natural springs in the area which she claimed attracted people to the area. As a young child, she remembered roller skating around the newly paved court house square and attending plays and musicals. She also recalled witnessing a touring circus downtown.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 October 4
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH091
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Adams, Estelle (part 2)
Biographical note: Estelle Adams was born on December 9, 1916 at Murray, Kentucky. Her father was Jim Osborn and her mother was Ethel Clark. Her father farmed and later sharecropped. The family grew corn, beans, tobacco, sorghum and raised pigs and chickens. As a child, she attended the Blood River Church. She and her husband lived in Detroit, Michigan during the Great Depression and Second World War.
Description: Estelle Adams describes life on the family farm in Murray Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. She recalls the chores she performed as a child, such as washing dishes, making beds and canning food. She tells of her father trading pigs, chickens and eggs for dry goods at the local grocery store or with traveling peddlers. She discusses medical remedies, church activities and significant regional events during the Great Depression and Second World War. She speaks of local remedies for common colds such as wild cherry bark, sugar, black pepper cough syrup. She recalls attending a week long ‘Big Meeting’ during a Baptist revival. At height of the Great Depression, she stated there was hardly any farm production and that government programs such as the Tennessee Valley Authority and Civilian Conservation Corps provided jobs which planted trees, built farms and paved the city streets of Murray. Adams made extra money ironing, cleaning houses and babysitting during the depression and war years.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1980 February 14 & 26
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH136
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Whittemore, Ananias
Biographical note: Ananias Whittemore was born near Boaz, Graves County, Kentucky to Doug and Tina Whittemore. His father was a minister at Shelton Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church and a farmer. He attended elementary school at Shelton Chapel until the eighth grade when he began working in the clay pit. At the time of the interview he had preached at two different churches for close to fifty years.
Description: Ananias Whittemore discusses his childhood while growing up in a African American household in rural Graves County, Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. He describes the segregated school he attended as a child, daily activities and working in the clay pit alongside his father. He explains the process of growing sugar cane and made making molasses. He began skimming and making molasses with his father at the age of five. He remembers selling molasses for twenty-five cents per gallon. After school, he began working in the clay pits at age fourteen where he worked ten hours a day making 18 cents an hour. He also worked at the local sawmill for a brief time. Whittemore also discusses the two churches that he served as a preacher for and his work in the ministry.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Marable, Addie C.
Date of interview: 1979 November 14
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH125
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Rose, Doris (part 2)
Biographical note: Doris Rose was born in Murray, Kentucky in 1919. She was a lifelong resident of Murray. Her parents were Bessie Houston and Cordis Fair. Her mother graduated from Murray High School but her father only attended grade school. She attended public schools and graduated Murray High School in 1935 at age sixteen. Her first job was at a real estate company working as a typist for a $1 a day. She later worked at a local photographer’s studio for four years earning $1.50 a day. She attended the First Christian Church as a child and the First Baptist Church later in her life. She married Alan Rose in 1939. Her husband joined the Marine Corp in 1943, where he spent a year in California and another year overseas.
Description: Doris Rose discusses her childhood in Murray, Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. She recalls doing chores such as feeding the farm animals, churning butter, sweeping and cleaning coal lamps. Her family home had no running water or electricity. She describes local medical facilities and home remedies. She also describes the effects of the Great Depression and the impact of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal policies. During the Great Depression, Rose recalled there being few jobs, no money and her family struggling to survive in a broken economy. She also recalled families and friends gathering at the bus station during the Second World War to bid farewell to the men leaving for military service.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 16
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH135
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Maxwell, Opal
Biographical note: Opal Maxwell was a lifelong resident of Paducah, Kentucky. Her father operated a farm and grew tobacco. She married at age nineteen without her parents consent. Her husband was a sharecropper that farmed and raised cows.
Description: Opal Maxwell discusses her childhood in Paducah, Kentucky. She describes the process of growing tobacco, working the fields and daily chores. She explains the process of smoking sausage, making applesauce and other country dishes. She also recalls attending church and school in the same building, that being the England School.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979 November 14
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH117
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Beasley, Charlie
Biographical note: Charlie Beasley was born in Ballard County, Kentucky on August 7, 1906. His mother and father were both farmers. Charlie had five brothers and two sisters. Charlie attended Bethel/Barlow church for his education. During his adolescence, Charlie cut tobacco. In 1922, Charlie moved to St. Louis to work for a contractor that constructed railroad switches. He then relocated to Mayfield to work for the company of Bradley and Wilson that assisted in the construction of Highway 60. In 1952, he moved to Paducah where he helped construct local shops downtown. Charlie moved to Murray, Kentucky in 1955. He retired in 1971.
Description: Charlie Beasley was a native of Ballard County, Kentucky. He discusses his early childhood years and the employment opportunities he had during his life. He describes African American communities in Paducah, Mayfield and Murray, Kentucky from the 1920s to the 1950s. He mentions the 8th of August celebration or “Colored Folk’s Day” at Paducah and also describes his encounters with racism by employers and community members.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Jordan, Thelma
Date of interview: 1979 November 19
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH095
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Hart, Elizabeth R. F. (part 1)
Biographical note: Elizabeth R. F. Hart was born in Mason Memorial Hospital in Murray, Kentucky on August 30, 1922. Her parents, Mary and William Finney were both school teachers. Her father was also served as president of First National Bank and dabbled in real estate. Hart was five years when old her family moved to Florida. One year later, her family returned to Kentucky. She attended Murray Training School on the campus of Murray State Teachers College (presently Murray State University). To support her college education, her father built a tobacco barn and farmed tobacco. The barn burned down not long after she started school and her father died soon afterwards. After graduation, Hart started teaching physics in Louisville, Kentucky at a middle school. She and her husband, who worked in the medical field, resided in several places including West Virginia, New York, North Carolina and Paducah, Kentucky. They returned to Murray to raise their three children.
Description: Elizabeth R. F. Hart recalls her childhood in Murray, Kentucky during the Great Depression era. She remembers playing in the swimming pool behind the ice factory and neighborhood children roller skating on the recently paved city streets. While attending college, Hart recalled her uncle matching whatever money she made from selling Christmas cards door to door to pay tuition. Hart mentions her father hiring a African-American woman named Ora Jackson to help with cooking, household cleaning and family care. She described how Jackson took great care of her as a child. She concludes with a discussion about her relationship and marriage with her husband Jim Hart.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 10
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH099
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Wilson, Dow
Biographical note: Dow Wilson was born in McCracken County on April 4, 1893. He was the son of H. R. and Lou Wilson. His father was a farmer and sharecropper. As a child he attended Cecil Elementary School near High Point, Kentucky. He farmed and sharecropped until the age of thirty when he was employed by the Illinois Central Railroad Company. He was a member of the Washington Street Missionary Baptist Church of Paducah. Wilson later served as a deacon at the church.
Description: Dow Wilson describes his experiences as an African American during the first half of the 20th century in rural McCracken County, Kentucky. He mentions attending segregated schools and churches, sharecropping and working for the Illinois Central Railroad Company. He discusses the effects of the Great Depression and Second World War on the black community and the development of the Tennessee Valley Authority in western Kentucky. Wilson also describes the 1942 fire that destroyed the Washington Street Missionary Baptist Church in Paducah and the religious services that were briefly held at Lincoln High School.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979 September 24
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH127
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Latta, Willie Pharris (part 1)
Biographical note: Willie Pharris Latta was born in Hickman County, Kentucky in 1894. Her father operated an orchard, sold timber and cut logs to build houses. He contracted mastoiditis and died of complications while she was a child. After his death, her mother continued to manage the orchard and sell lumber. At a young age, she contracts typhoid fever from contaminated water in Hickman County. She began school at Mount Moriah but later attended Mount Pleasant. After high school, she moved to Bowling Green, Kentucky to attend college. At age 17, she passed the teacher’s a placement exam and soon afterwards began teaching. In 1912, she married her husband Warren. He managed a farm and raised cattle and chickens. She attended church at Mount Moriah Baptist Church and later Mount Pleasant Methodist Church.
Description: Willie Pharris Latta describes her experiences growing up in rural Hickman County, Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. She discusses the public schools she attended and making 50 cents an hour staying after class to cleaning chalkboards, sweep and dust. She reflects upon her experiences during the Great Depression and recalls the government rationing certain foods. She mentions her church affiliations and participating in Baptist revivals.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Murray, Nicolette
Date of interview: 1980 November 20
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH134
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Hart, Elizabeth R. F. (part 2)
Biographical note: Elizabeth R. F. Hart was born in Mason Memorial Hospital in Murray, Kentucky on August 30, 1922. Her parents, Mary and William Finney were both school teachers. Her father was also served as president of First National Bank and dabbled in real estate. Hart was five years when old her family moved to Florida. One year later, her family returned to Kentucky. She attended Murray Training School on the campus of Murray State Teachers College (presently Murray State University). To support her college education, her father built a tobacco barn and farmed tobacco. The barn burned down not long after she started school and her father died soon afterwards. After graduation, Hart started teaching physics in Louisville, Kentucky at a middle school. She and her husband, who worked in the medical field, resided in several places including West Virginia, New York, North Carolina and Paducah, Kentucky. They returned to Murray to raise their three children.
Description: Elizabeth R. F. Hart recalls her childhood in Murray, Kentucky during the Great Depression era. She remembers playing in the swimming pool behind the ice factory and neighborhood children roller skating on the recently paved city streets. While attending college, Hart recalled her uncle matching whatever money she made from selling Christmas cards door to door to pay tuition. Hart mentions her father hiring a African-American woman named Ora Jackson to help with cooking, household cleaning and family care. She described how Jackson took great care of her as a child. She concludes with a discussion about her relationship and marriage with her husband Jim Hart.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 10
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH099
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Hudspeth, Florence (part 2)
Biographical note: Florence Hudspeth was born in Murray, Kentucky on May 30, 1935. Her father worked for the Calloway County Lumber Company and also raised hogs and chickens. As a teenager, she washed dishes, chopped wood and caught, killed and de-feathered chickens. She dropped out of school after the eighth grade to find work to assist her family. In 1954, she married a man in the armed services. After he retired from the military, he worked for the local lumber company.
Description: Florence Hudspeth describes the African American experience in Murray, Kentucky during the 1940s and 1950s. She mentions an open lot were ‘gypsies’ camped and where they would swap and sell horses and buggies. Her family home did not have electricity but used oil lamps for lighting. As a teenager she went to black owned cafes and visited only black friends. She did not having any white friends as a youth. She recalls there being three black owned restaurants, a blacksmith and a funeral home in Murray during the 1940s and 1950s. She stated that the black community was provided care in the emergency room at the city hospital, but most avoided the hospital unless it was absolutely necessary. During the Second World War, she remembered tanks and army trucks moving through town, as well as food rationing. People stood in line for an entire day just to purchase sugar. She also recalled Western Union delivering telegrams from servicemen and the reactions of those who lost a son during the war.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1979 October 4
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH110
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Baker, Elizabeth Jane (part 1)
Biographical note: Jane Baker was born on December 2, 1922 at Murray, Kentucky. She was a lifetime resident of Murray, except for a few years during the Second World War when she lived at several military bases with her husband. Her mother, Gladys Hail (born 1900), grew up in the Kirksey area of Calloway County, Kentucky. Her father, Charlie Hail (born 1893), worked at the Scott & Lester Hardware Company located on the Court Square in Murray. She graduated Murray High School in June of 1941 and married in October of the same year. In early 1942, her husband was drafted into the United States Army and sent to Colorado and then to Washington D.C. where he worked at the Pentagon. Baker followed her husband on his tours of duty and after the war’s conclusion returned to Murray.
Description: Jane Baker describes her life in a small college town in western Kentucky during the Great Depression and the Second World War. She discusses childhood activities, adolescent chores and responsibilities, attending high school, working with her father at the hardware store, food distribution and healthcare, and significant events that occurred in Murray and Calloway County, Kentucky. She spoke of how everyone in town had their own gardens and shared food with neighbors. She also mentioned her family history, her experiences during the Second World War as the wife of an American soldier and offered detailed descriptions of her family home in Murray.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 22
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH092
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Williamson, Norvel J.
Biographical note: Norvel J. Williamson’s parents were Cullie and Louie Williamson. He attended segregated public schools, including Lincoln High School where he graduated in June of 1937. He attended and graduated college at Kentucky State University. After graduation, he worked in dining services for the Illinois Central Railroad for thirty two years. He was an active member of the labor union and joined soon after it organized.
Description: Norvel J. Williamson talks about his early life in Paducah, Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. He recalls the Great Depression, the flood of 1937 and his early years in school. He mentions that many were financially wiped out after the flood of 1937. During the flood, Williamson carried sandbags to the levy at Hickman. During the Great Depression, his father worked for Illinois Central Railroad and later for the Work Progress Administration. He reflects on working for the railroad and the growth of labor unions. He describes Noble Park and Stewart Nelson Park and white black relationships in the city prior to the civil rights movement. He mentioned that blacks had access to the public libraries and were able to attend white churches.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Bates, Mary
Date of interview: 1979 November 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH126
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Stevens, Effie
Biographical note: Effie Stevens was born at Paducah, Kentucky in 1904. Stevens’ father, Frank Brundy, was a pool cleaner and her mother a housekeeper. Her mother died when she was three years old. After her mother’s death, she resided with her aunt and uncle. After high school, she attended West Kentucky Industrial College. She joined the Harrison Street Church and was baptized in 1914. In 1937, she joined her husband’s church at Ebenezer Baptist Church where they later became missionary workers for the church. Her husband was the church’s deacon.
Description: Effie Stevens discusses her life in Paducah, Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. Stevens describes her childhood, attending school and popular social activities and events in the Jackson Purchase. She recalls walking to school on dirt roads that were created from wagons and buggies drawn by horses. She describes natural remedies used by her family to cure certain illnesses, details household chores done as a child and the importance of religion in the community. She mentioned that there were no hospitals or nursing homes in Paducah when she was young. Stevens remembers the 8th of August celebrations, square dancing and local artists playing guitar and banjo. She recalled that her parent’s home had no indoor plumbing, no electricity and no furnaces for cooking and heating. They had a wooden outhouse and used soaked corn husks as toilet paper to save on money. Her family also hung gypsum weed up to get rid of mosquitoes, due to a lack of window screens.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Bates, Mary
Date of interview: 1979 October 19
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH123
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Hudspeth, Florence (part 1)
Biographical note: Florence Hudspeth was born in Murray, Kentucky on May 30, 1935. Her father worked for the Calloway County Lumber Company and also raised hogs and chickens. As a teenager, she washed dishes, chopped wood and caught, killed and de-feathered chickens. She dropped out of school after the eighth grade to find work to assist her family. In 1954, she married a man in the armed services. After he retired from the military, he worked for the local lumber company.
Description: Florence Hudspeth describes the African American experience in Murray, Kentucky during the 1940s and 1950s. She mentions an open lot were ‘gypsies’ camped and where they would swap and sell horses and buggies. Her family home did not have electricity but used oil lamps for lighting. As a teenager she went to black owned cafes and visited only black friends. She did not having any white friends as a youth. She recalls there being three black owned restaurants, a blacksmith and a funeral home in Murray during the 1940s and 1950s. She stated that the black community was provided care in the emergency room at the city hospital, but most avoided the hospital unless it was absolutely necessary. During the Second World War, she remembered tanks and army trucks moving through town, as well as food rationing. People stood in line for an entire day just to purchase sugar. She also recalled Western Union delivering telegrams from servicemen and the reactions of those who lost a son during the war.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1979 October 4
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH110
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Copeland, Cletus
Biographical note: Cletus Copeland was born in Calloway County, Kentucky on July 29, 1903. His parents moved to Marshall County, Kentucky just prior to his first birthday. His father was a farmer that grew tobacco and corn and raised livestock. He attended the Darnell School and was a member of the Uson Baptist Church. He worked in road construction for Marshall County, managed a general store at Benton and sold feed and mulch.
Description: Cletus Copeland discusses his life in Western Kentucky during the early half of the 20th century. He describes attending school and church, working on the family farm and attending social and community activities during his childhood. He recalls attending church, the effects of the Great Depression and the increase of food and land prices during the Second World War. Copeland states that most African Americans in the area that could not find employment moved to places like Detroit, Michigan with hopes to find work. He also mentions the various jobs that he held, including farming, running a general store and road construction.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Pasco, Kathryn
Date of interview: 1979 November 12
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH101
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Outland, Kathleen C. (part 1)
Biographical note: Kathleen C. Outland was born in Calloway County, Kentucky on October 31, 1918. Her father was William Clifton Caldwell. He was a farmer that grew tobacco, corn and wheat. In his later years, he worked for the Kentucky State Highway Department. Her mother, Rachel Kelso attended grade school in Calloway County and was a member of the Beach Grove Cumberland Presbyterian Church. She attended the Broach School of Calloway County until the school burned down. She graduated from Lynn Grove High School in 1936 at the age of seventeen. She received a scholarship to attend business school at Paducah, but her education was cut short by the flood of 1937. In the fall of 1937, she moved to Detroit, Michigan to work for the department store of Crown & Miller. In July of 1938, she returned to Kentucky and worked for the United States Department of Agriculture. She married Joseph Purdon in 1940, he was a tobacco auctioneer.
Description: Kathleen C. Outland recalls her youth in Calloway County, Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. She describes “tramps” visiting her parent’s farm looking for food and a place to sleep during the Great Depression. She discusses how she spent her days as a young child and her early education. She remembers that on ‘Trade Day’ she and her friends skipped school to catch the event. She reflects upon her life involvement with church and her professional career. She mentions that her church would host all day revival meetings called “dinner on the ground” where they had a community dinner and sang gospel songs. She states that during the Great Depression there was plenty of food from the family farm, but that the family had no money. She expresses her thoughts on Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry S. Truman and recalls listening to President Roosevelt’s fireside chats. Outland recalled President Truman visiting Kentucky when the dam was being constructed at Gilbertsville. She also spoke of how farms were taken by imminent domain before the dam was built.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1989 February 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH118
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Hopkins, Bill
Biographical note: Bill Hopkins was born in Oakland, Mississippi. His family relocated from Mississippi to Arkansas when he was 11 years old. In 1923, his family moved to Memphis, Tennessee. In 1941, Hopkins moved to Paducah and worked as a chef at the Irvin Cobb Hotel. The following year, he joined the United States Army and traveled to multiple islands in the Pacific during the Second World War. After the war, he joined the Washington Street Baptist Church where he served on the finance committee and later was a deacon.
Description: Bill Hopkins discusses his experiences as an African American in Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee and Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. He describes his travels as a child from Mississippi, to Arkansas, to Tennessee and lastly to Paducah. He recalls his parents and their occupations, where he attended school and that he never witnessed any racial tensions during his early life. He mentions the training he received as a chef, his recollections of the prohibition era, the Great Depression and his military service in the Second World War.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Marable, Addie C.
Date of interview: 1979 November 15
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH128
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Humphrey, Clara H. (part 1)
Biographical note: Clara H. Humphrey was the only child of Delaine and H. T. Waldrop of Coldwater, Kentucky. Her father managed the ice company at Murray, Kentucky. Her mother worked for the local welfare office and kept the accounting records for the ice company. When in the third grade, her parent’s house was destroyed by fire and her family resided in a local hotel for an entire year until the house was rebuilt. In 1939, she graduated Murray High School at the age sixteen. She attended the University of Missouri and graduated with a degree in journalism in 1943. After college, she worked for the Louisville Courier Journal for three years at the news desk. She later worked for the advertising firm of Foreston and Huff and served as news director of WNBS radio in Murray, Kentucky.
Description: Clara H. Humphrey describes her life in Calloway County, Kentucky from the 1930s to the 1970s. She begins by discussing that her mother’s father was a county judge and that her mother’s grandfather assisted in writing the 1891 Constitution of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. She recalls her father discussing politics with Frank Albert Stubblefield and her family dining regularly with Alben Barkley. She describes having a pet fox and swimming in the community pool near the Murray Ice Company where her parents were employed. As a child, she recalled attending events at Pogue Library, singing Christmas carols at Lowry Auditorium and participating in other events on the Murray State University campus. She describes the effects of the Great Depression on her family and the closure of the First National Bank of Murray. While working for the Louisville Courier Journal, Humphrey recalled a report of a man being lynched. She concludes with a discussion on her time as a news director of WNBS in Murray.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1979 October 21
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH111
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Curd, James B.
Biographical note: James B. Curd was a native of Calloway County, Kentucky. His father farmed corn, tobacco, hay, and raised livestock on an eighty acre farm. He began his education at age five at the Howard School but soon transferred to the Hickory Grove School. He graduated from Lynn Grove High School. He regularly attended Martin’s Chapel, a Methodist Church near Murray, Kentucky. He married in 1908. Curd farmed until 1928 when a crop failure forced him to sell his farm. He worked for Jones Dairy Farm during the late 1920s, which later became part of Murray State University. He moved to the city of Murray in 1930. His great-grandfather was an early pioneer and land speculator in the Jackson Purchase area.
Description: James B. Curd describes his life in Calloway County, Kentucky during the first half of the 20th Century. He discusses his childhood and attending rural one room schools, the impact of the First World War to the region and the community’s growth in the 1920s. He also reflects upon the economic troubles of the 1930s, President Roosevelt’s “New Deal” to provide relief for the region and the community’s struggles during Second World War.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Pasco, Kathryn
Date of interview: 1979 November 6
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH103
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Dunn, Marjorie Shroat (part 1)
Biographical note: Marjorie Shroat Dunn was a lifelong resident and business woman from Murray, Kentucky. Her father owned local businesses and her mother was a homemaker. Her father owned and rented property in the city as well as selling meat products and scrap iron. She was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Murray. She attended local public schools and graduated Murray High School in 1940. After graduation she began to work at the Bank of Murray and attended Murray State College (presently Murray State University). In 1945, she graduated and received a degree in business administration. She first married in 1940 but her husband died of a heart attack five years later. She remarried in 1971 to Felix Dunn and nine years later he died.
Description: Marjorie Shroat Dunn discusses her experiences as child through to adulthood in Murray, Kentucky from the 1930s to the 1970s. Marjorie recalled when the city first paved the roads and how community members helped pay for the road construction. She discusses life in Murray and the many changes that took place over time. She mentions segregated schools and how many black students in the Murray attended Kentucky State University. During the Second World War, Marjorie describes increases in food prices and instances where there was no food at local stores. She also recalls the lack of young men in college due to the draft. She concludes by discussing the effects of Great Depression on the community and her father’s business.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 17
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH104
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Ratcliff, Lizzie
Biographical note: Lizzie Ratcliff was born in Marshall County in 1895. Her parents were Lucy Randolph and Ed Story. Her father cut railroad ties and constructed houses. He also farmed corn, peas and hay and bred mules and cows. She attended the Said Road School until the 8th grade. She attended Lee’s Chapel as a child and later Burks Chapel in Paducah. She was a homemaker and provided house cleaning services.
Description: Lizzie Ratcliff discusses her life as African American in southwestern Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. She describes attending rural public schools in Marshall County, Kentucky and residing in a predominantly white community. She recalls playing baseball and attending neighborhood parties and dances. She mentions race relations within the community and that between black and white families frequently socialized with one another. She provides a description of her neighborhood, family friends and nearby communities. She reflects on the importance of the church, the profession of midwifery and her experiences in Paducah later in her life.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Marable, Addie
Date of interview: 1979
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH133
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Humphreys, Edna (part 2)
Biographical note: Edna Humphreys was born on February 23, 1907 to Robert Walter Henderson and Tammy B. Campbell Henderson of Graves County, Kentucky. She had six siblings and her father died before the last child was born. Her father was a sharecropper that grew tobacco.
Description: Edna Humphreys describes her life in rural Graves County, Kentucky. She describes the process of growing tobacco and the numerous chores associated with sharecropping. She recalled that school was only in session for six months because many of the children worked during planting and harvest season. She remembered her family singing and playing music as a means of entertainment. She discusses childhood plying games, attending parties and dances, making feather beds and sewing quilts with patterns passed down from generation to generation. She tells of a family storm shelter that contained canned goods and other items needed in case of a tornado or other emergency. She remembers a cow and a small patch of land to grow tobacco were given to her father by the owner of the farm to assist with family expenses. Humphreys also recalls how the United States government contracted her husband to grow hemp during the period between First and Second World War for the use of making rope. She mentions how the Great Depression greatly affected her family and when the government introduced DDT to farms in the county.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Murray, Nicolette
Date of interview: 1980 October 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH114
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Sapp, Ruby
Biographical note: Ruby Sapp was born on January 16, 1908. Her parents were Lula and Herbert Carmen. Her father ran a grocery store in Mayfield for over twenty five years. Her mother died when she was one year old. She joined St. James African Methodist Episcopal Church at thirteen years old. She attended Lincoln Elementary School and at age twelve she began high school. Sapp graduated high school in 1924 and that fall attended Tennessee State College in Nashville, where she graduated with a degree in education in 1928. She returned to Mayfield and taught at the Dunbar School for two years before moving to South Carolina. In 1939, she again returned to Mayfield and taught in the public schools for thirty-eight years. She taught home economics, English and science. She retired from teaching in 1970.
Description: Ruby Sapp of Mayfield, Kentucky discusses black schools and segregation during the first half of the 20th century. In 1917, she recalled witnessing a mob of people lynching a man not from her school. After this event, she expressed that fear of the black community. She mentioned traveling to Hot Springs, Arkansas, where she remembered first learning of Jim Crow. Sapp stated that the only job available for black men was in the tobacco barns of local farmers. During the Great Depression, she recalled the family making many sacrifices to support her father. She also described that when public schools began to integrate that rocks were thrown into the school’s windows.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979 July 5
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH122
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Chappell, Angienella
Biographical note: Angienella Chappell spent her early childhood and teenage years in Paducah, Kentucky during the 1910s and 1920s. Her parents, Clarence and Dolly, owned a restaurant downtown. She attended Garfield Elementary School and Lincoln High School, both all black schools. She graduated high school in 1926 and later attended summer classes at West Kentucky Vocational School. She relocated to Chicago to live and attend college. She worked several jobs in Chicago, which included working for the Social Security Board as a secretary. After retiring she provided testing for the Armed Forces.
Description: Angienella Chappell discusses the difficulties that African Americans faced in west Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. She describes being released early from school due to a lynching, the economic effects of the Great Depression on the black community, a saloon in downtown Paducah during prohibition, the flood of 1913 and the big snow of 1918 which closed the schools from Thanksgiving to early January. She stated how African American women had only two choices after graduating high school, become either a cook or maid or leave town. She did not recall segregated street cars in Paducah as others had testified to witnessing. Chappell concludes with her observations of urban decay in the later part of the 20th century, particularly on 9th and 10th streets which deteriorated into a ghetto.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Bates, Mary
Date of interview: 1979 October 4
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH098
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Curd, Alice J.
Biographical note: Alice J. Curd was born in Paducah, Kentucky. She resided in the African American community on Washington Street. She was member of the Washington Street Church and attended Garfield Elementary School and Lincoln High School. During the flood of 1937, she was evacuated and lived with relatives in Mayfield, Kentucky. She married in 1938 and moved to Almo, Kentucky. She and her husband moved to Murray, Kentucky in 1940. While in Murray she attended St. John Baptist Church, where she sang in the choir and was on the entertainment committee. When her husband passed in 1959, Curd moved back to Paducah.
Description: Alice Jordan Curd discusses attending segregated schools and African American churches in Paducah, Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. She mentions the Reverend J. W. Hawkins of the Washington Street congregation, recalls the flood of 1937 and the effects of the Great Depression.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Bates, Mary
Date of interview: 1979 November 2
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH102
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Dunn, Marjorie Shroat (part 2)
Biographical note: Marjorie Shroat Dunn was a lifelong resident and business woman from Murray, Kentucky. Her father owned local businesses and her mother was a homemaker. Her father owned and rented property in the city as well as selling meat products and scrap iron. She was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Murray. She attended local public schools and graduated Murray High School in 1940. After graduation she began to work at the Bank of Murray and attended Murray State College (presently Murray State University). In 1945, she graduated and received a degree in business administration. She first married in 1940 but her husband died of a heart attack five years later. She remarried in 1971 to Felix Dunn and nine years later he died.
Description: Marjorie Shroat Dunn discusses her experiences as child through to adulthood in Murray, Kentucky from the 1930s to the 1970s. Marjorie recalled when the city first paved the roads and how community members helped pay for the road construction. She discusses life in Murray and the many changes that took place over time. She mentions segregated schools and how many black students in the Murray attended Kentucky State University. During the Second World War, Marjorie describes increases in food prices and instances where there was no food at local stores. She also recalls the lack of young men in college due to the draft. She concludes by discussing the effects of Great Depression on the community and her father’s business.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 17
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH104
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Whayne, Joan Butterworth (part 2)
Biographical note: Joan Butterworth Whayne was born in 1925 at Bowling Green, Kentucky. Her father established the Butterworth Clinic in Murray, Kentucky. She attended the Murray Training School where she graduated at age sixteen in 1942. She began college the following fall at Murray State Teachers College. She remained at Murray State for three years but transferred to University of Kentucky. After she graduated in 1946, she spent time in Washington D.C., Memphis, New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Fort Worth. She returned to Murray where her husband worked for Whayne’s father at the Butterworth Clinic. Later in life, her husband worked as a regional medical officer in Europe, Asia and South America.
Description: Joan Butterworth Whayne describes her life experiences from the 1930s to the 1970s. She describes her childhood in Calloway County, Kentucky during the Great Depression and the Second World War. She recalls attending the Murray State Training School, social activities and regional events. She remembers her college years, extracurricular activities and career as a real estate agent. She describes her travels with her husband, who was a medic in the United States Army, during and following the Second World War. She also mentions her father being overseas during the First World War.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH129
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Hale, Vivian M.
Biographical note: Vivian M. Hale was a lifelong resident of Murray, Kentucky. Her mother, Ruth Skinner Hale, was a homemaker and her father, Leon Hale, worked for the Kentucky State Department. She attended local public schools and graduated from Murray High School in 1942. She later graduated from Murray State College (presently Murray State University) in 1945 with a degree in accounting and bookkeeping. After graduation, she taught briefly in Shelbyville, Illinois but returned and began work as an administrative secretary at Murray State College. She worked in the Office of the President from 1946 to 1986.
Description: Vivian M. Hale recalls her life in Murray, Kentucky from the 1930s to the 1980s. She discusses the effects of the Great Depression and Prohibition Era and how she witnessed bootleggers stealing sugar from a factory down. She mentions an old cotton gin and other businesses that operated in the city. When attending Murray State College (presently Murray State University) during the Second World War, she recalled that the only men on campus were in the Navy flight program or teaching at the college. She remembered that she heard of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s death on the radio and that the community was stunned by the announcement. Hale also discussed segregation at the college prior to the 1960s and that black students had their own separate study halls and a special filing cabinet for their grades.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 15
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH105
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Locke, Hazel
Biographical note: Hazel Locke was born in 1906 in Boot Hill, Missouri. Her family moved to Bollinger County when she was seven. Her father cut timber for a living and made railroad ties. She stopped attending school after the eighth grade and married at age seventeen. Her husband was a World War II veteran who worked as a carpenter. In 1950, her husband was hired by the Paducah Gaseous Diffusion Plant near Paducah, Kentucky. They relocated to Coldwater, Kentucky.
Description: Hazel Locke discusses her childhood in the Ozark Mountains of Missouri and early adulthood in Paducah, Kentucky. She recalls attending a one-room schoolhouse as a child until the eighth grade and describes her household chores such as carrying wood, feeding livestock, housework and making lye soap. She mentions her childhood dream was to become a nurse. She stated the Great Depression as being “hard times” and many feared starvation. She recalls attending “play parties”, which were parties with games, square dancing and live music. Locke told of her brother serving in the United States Navy and being stationed at Pearl Harbor during Japanese attack. She describes a “Brush Arbor Meeting”, which was a revival under a brush pavilion constructed by the church members.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Pasco, Kathryn
Date of interview: 1980 January 28
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH116
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Barker, Charlotte O.
Biographical note: Charlotte O. Barker was born in 1921 at Murray, Kentucky. She was the daughter of Leland Owen and Myrta Kirkland Barker. She graduated Murray High School in 1937 at age seventeen. She attended Murray State Teachers College and after graduation taught for the city school system for over 30 years. She was active in the Murray Methodist Church and taught youth groups. During the Second World War, Barker worked at the library at Murray State Teachers College and as a secretary for the Murray Electric Company. She returned college in 1950 to acquire a Masters degree in education.
Description: Charlotte O. Barker was a public teacher and lifelong resident of Murray, Kentucky. She describes growing up in small college town during the Great Depression, the Second World War and the immediate years that followed. She mentions the family values of her parents and the general attitude of people in Murray during the depression years. She further discusses recreational activities during her childhood and teenage years, public education in the 1930s and public utilities available during 1940s in Calloway County, Kentucky. She concludes by discussing the deaths of Franklin D. Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy and how it affected her life.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH093
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Bunch, Shirley (part 2)
Biographical note: Shirley Bunch was born on June 22, 1940. Her parents were Leola and Matthew McCally. She attended Rosary Chapel Catholic School from elementary to high school. She was the first and only student to graduate that high school in 1958. After high school, she attended Paducah Junior College. Her husband, William Bunch, became the first African American police deputy in McCracken County in December of 1969. In 1973, she attended the Paducah Tilghman Trade School and afterwards worked at Lourdes Hospital. She then took a leave of absence in 1976 to return to Paducah Community College to finish her degree. Following graduation she worked at Brookport Elementary School in Illinois. In 1978, Bunch worked as the first black female deputy at the McCracken County Police Department. She was a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the first female president of the Paducah Association for Motivation Progress, Education and Rehabilitation (PAMPER) and a board member on of the Paducah Community Center.
Description: Shirley Bunch describes attending segregated schools from elementary to high school in Paducah, Kentucky during the 1940s and 1950s. She recalls that African Americans began attending Paducah Junior College in 1955. She discusses her career, travels and marriage. She recounts places of employment, offices held and professional and community achievements she acquired during her lifetime. She mentions the medical practices administered at Paducah’s Lourdes Hospital during the early 1970s. She also describes mentoring black children struggling with segregation issues.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH137b
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Boyd, Oneida (part 2)
Biographical note: Oneida Boyd was a lifelong resident of Murray, Kentucky. She was baptized at Locust Grove Baptist Church but later attended the First Baptist Church of Murray. She graduated from Murray Training School and briefly attended Murray State College. Prior to the Second World War, she worked at Boones Laundry and Dry Cleaners in Murray. During the war, she worked for Western Union delivering telegrams. Following the war, she became manager of Western Union and continued to work there until the office closed. After that, she worked for the Bank of Murray until her retirement in 1978.
Description: Oneida Boyd describes life in Murray, Kentucky during the Great Depression and the Second World War. She discusses that many homes in Calloway County, prior to the construction of the Kentucky Dam in the 1940s, had no electricity. She was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Murray and community organizations. Oneida discusses difficult economic times; the struggles of the working class, the introduction of social security and local and national politics. She mentioned the effects of the depression on her family and community. Oneida recalled hearing President Roosevelt’s Sunday morning radio chats and the announcement of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. She described her job at Western Union during the Second World War when she delivered telegrams to families of recently deceased soldiers. She also recalled a visit to Murray by President Truman.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 October 26 & 1988 November 15
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH096
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Jackson, Hugh
Biographical note: Hugh Jackson was born in Mayfield, Kentucky on March 3, 1919 to Fannie and Haley Jackson. He attended elementary and high school at the Dunbar School, an independent black school. He graduated high school in 1933 and began taking classes in the fall of 1934 at West Kentucky Industrial College. He completed his studies there in 1936 and in 1937 attended Rust College in Holy Springs, Mississippi. Jackson graduated from Rust in 1939 with a Bachelor of Arts degree. In the fall of 1942, he began teaching at Milton Elementary School in Fulton, Kentucky. He remained at Milton for seven years before returning to Mayfield. In 1959, Jackson became the first black candidate to run for City Council in Mayfield.
Description: Hugh Jackson recalls his childhood and early adulthood in Mayfield, Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. He describes the African American community of Mayfield and his education in segregated schools. Jackson mentions his first job at a local grocery store and attending St. James African Methodist Church. He vividly recalls his high school days at the Dunbar School. He concluded with a discussion on his career as a teacher and politician
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979 July 5
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH113
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Wolfson, Emily Wilson (part 1)
Biographical note: Emily Wilson Wolfson was born at Wilson Station, Kentucky in 1915. As a child, she attended a one-room school house in Henderson County, Kentucky. Her father was a poultry farmer and an insurance agent and her mother a public school teacher. She received a scholarship at the Newcomb School of Art in Louisiana, where she received an undergraduate degree in Art. She later attended the Art School at Louisiana State University. After receiving her master’s degree in 1941, she was hired as an art instructor at Murray State Teachers College. She taught at Murray State for three years before accepting a position as the Art Director at the Evansville Art Museum. She also taught at Indiana University for ten years. She returned to Murray State in 1958 as faculty member in the Art Department. She retired in 1967. She was a member of the Murray Art Guild, the president of the Kentucky Guild of Artists and Craftsmen and a representative on the American Crafts Council. She was awarded the Governor’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts and the Rude Osolnik Award.
Description: Emily Wilson Wolfson, a native of Henderson County, Kentucky, discusses her experiences on a poultry farm during the 1920s. During the Great Depression, her father sold the family farm and ventured into business of insurance while her mother taught in public schools. She describes high school, church events and social activities in rural western Kentucky during the 1930s and 1940s. She mentions her academic career at Murray State University and Indiana University during the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s and her career as an artist in the 1970s and 1980s.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 October 20
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH130
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Peyton, William Carl
Biographical note: William Carl Peyton was born in Murray, Kentucky on December 10, 1910. His parents were Luther William; an employee of the Illinois Central Railroad Company and Loyala Pearl Ford, a retired school teacher. Peyton attended Dunbar Elementary School in Murray until the third grade. His family moved to Paducah where he attended Lincoln High School. After high school, he attended Western Kentucky Industrial College and later Kentucky State University. At Kentucky State, he was head cheerleader and was in the drama and dance clubs. He also participated in the school chorus and was a member of the Alpha Phi Alpha fraternity. After school, he moved back to Paducah where he was substitute teacher for the black city schools. He received his first teaching position at West Paducah High School in 1934, and continued to live in Paducah until 1953. He then moved to Pontiac, Michigan and worked in the Recreational Department. In 1958, he moved to Chicago, Illinois to teacher. He retired and returned to Paducah in 1976.
Description: William Carl Peyton discusses his childhood and early adulthood as an African American living in Paducah, Kentucky. He recalls attending the Washington Street Baptist Church and Brooks Chapel. He describes his teaching career and involvement in the city public school system. He describes segregation in Paducah during the 1930s and 1940s and that blacks were directed to sit in the balcony of the movie theatre and had to enter via the loading dock at most restaurants. He also recalls the local bus terminal having different waiting rooms for both whites and blacks. He spoke of the Great Depression and how it affected his plans for higher education. He mentions his involvement with the Black Oral History Program, which began June 1st 1979 and his later involvement in the N.A.A.C.P. He reflects upon the Emancipation Project Celebration also know as the 8th of August Celebration, in which he organized committees in the black community to develop programs and events for nation’s bicentennial.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Bates, Mary
Date of interview: 1979 November 29
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH119
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Bunch, Shirley (part 1)
Biographical note: Shirley Bunch was born on June 22, 1940. Her parents were Leola and Matthew McCally. She attended Rosary Chapel Catholic School from elementary to high school. She was the first and only student to graduate that high school in 1958. After high school, she attended Paducah Junior College. Her husband, William Bunch, became the first African American police deputy in McCracken County in December of 1969. In 1973, she attended the Paducah Tilghman Trade School and afterwards worked at Lourdes Hospital. She then took a leave of absence in 1976 to return to Paducah Community College to finish her degree. Following graduation she worked at Brookport Elementary School in Illinois. In 1978, Bunch worked as the first black female deputy at the McCracken County Police Department. She was a member of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), the first female president of the Paducah Association for Motivation Progress, Education and Rehabilitation (PAMPER) and a board member on of the Paducah Community Center.
Description: Shirley Bunch describes attending segregated schools from elementary to high school in Paducah, Kentucky during the 1940s and 1950s. She recalls that African Americans began attending Paducah Junior College in 1955. She discusses her career, travels and marriage. She recounts places of employment, offices held and professional and community achievements she acquired during her lifetime. She mentions the medical practices administered at Paducah’s Lourdes Hospital during the early 1970s. She also describes mentoring black children struggling with segregation issues.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH137b
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Gordon, Pearlene
Biographical note: Pearlene Gordon was born in Marshall County, Kentucky in 1918. Her father owned a grocery store and rented farmland. She attended public schools at Aurora, Kentucky and graduated high school in 1936. There were only four in her graduating class. She attended Unity Cumberland Presbyterian Church of Aurora. Gordon married when she was 18 years old. She and her husband moved to Murray, Kentucky to continue her education.
Description: Pearlene Gordon describes her father’s general store in Aurora, Kentucky, which sold groceries, hardware and clothing during the Great Depression. She recalled that not everyone paid in cash, some brought pigs, cows, chickens, and eggs to trade for goods. She reminisced that all the girls wanted to become nurses when she was a child. She mentioned that her family did not own a radio until she was sixteen years old. She described that young ladies started courting and getting married at ages fourteen to sixteen. She mentioned that many families would give their children five acres of land to build a home and farm after marriage. During the Second World War, Gordon recalled that many women performed work that men were accustomed to doing. She also remembered visits from doctors when family members were sick and that the nearest hospital was in Murray.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Pasco, Kathryn
Date of interview: 1980 January 29
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH107
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Boyd, Oneida (part 1)
Biographical note: Oneida Boyd was a lifelong resident of Murray, Kentucky. She was baptized at Locust Grove Baptist Church but later attended the First Baptist Church of Murray. She graduated from Murray Training School and briefly attended Murray State College. Prior to the Second World War, she worked at Boones Laundry and Dry Cleaners in Murray. During the war, she worked for Western Union delivering telegrams. Following the war, she became manager of Western Union and continued to work there until the office closed. After that, she worked for the Bank of Murray until her retirement in 1978.
Description: Oneida Boyd describes life in Murray, Kentucky during the Great Depression and the Second World War. She discusses that many homes in Calloway County, prior to the construction of the Kentucky Dam in the 1940s, had no electricity. She was an active member of the First Baptist Church of Murray and community organizations. Oneida discusses difficult economic times; the struggles of the working class, the introduction of social security and local and national politics. She mentioned the effects of the depression on her family and community. Oneida recalled hearing President Roosevelt’s Sunday morning radio chats and the announcement of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. She described her job at Western Union during the Second World War when she delivered telegrams to families of recently deceased soldiers. She also recalled a visit to Murray by President Truman.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 October 26 & 1988 November 15
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH096
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Ligon, Gladyes S.
Biographical note: Gladyes S. Ligon was born in Graves County, Kentucky in 1901. His parents, King and Jesse Ligon, owned a farm that grew corn, tobacco and raised cows, horses, hogs and chickens. He attended Shelton Elementary School near Bardwell until the sixth grade. He helped to build three churches in Graves County and one in Hickman County. In 1918, he traveled to Gary, Indiana and worked at a tin mill. He returned to Graves County where he and his brother, Griffon, bought a sixty-five acre farm. He married Yewella Jenkins in 1926 and they had seven children. His wife was a teacher at Neal’s Chapel Church.
Description: Gladyes S. Ligon discusses his childhood on a farm in rural Graves County, Kentucky. He recalls attending school and that classes were scheduled around the planting and harvest months. He describes life during the Great Depression and how it affected his family and community. After his father’s death, Ligon returned home and to work on the farm. Ligon mentions attending church as a child and that there was no fire department in Mayfield, Kentucky during in his youth.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979 November 14
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH115
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
View the MP3 document
Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Wolfson, Emily Wilson (part 2)
Biographical note: Emily Wilson Wolfson was born at Wilson Station, Kentucky in 1915. As a child, she attended a one-room school house in Henderson County, Kentucky. Her father was a poultry farmer and an insurance agent and her mother a public school teacher. She received a scholarship at the Newcomb School of Art in Louisiana, where she received an undergraduate degree in Art. She later attended the Art School at Louisiana State University. After receiving her master’s degree in 1941, she was hired as an art instructor at Murray State Teachers College. She taught at Murray State for three years before accepting a position as the Art Director at the Evansville Art Museum. She also taught at Indiana University for ten years. She returned to Murray State in 1958 as faculty member in the Art Department. She retired in 1967. She was a member of the Murray Art Guild, the president of the Kentucky Guild of Artists and Craftsmen and a representative on the American Crafts Council. She was awarded the Governor’s Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Arts and the Rude Osolnik Award.
Description: Emily Wilson Wolfson, a native of Henderson County, Kentucky, discusses her experiences on a poultry farm during the 1920s. During the Great Depression, her father sold the family farm and ventured into business of insurance while her mother taught in public schools. She describes high school, church events and social activities in rural western Kentucky during the 1930s and 1940s. She mentions her academic career at Murray State University and Indiana University during the 1940s, 1950s and 1960s and her career as an artist in the 1970s and 1980s.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 October 20
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH130
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Gaines, Olivia B.
Biographical note: Olivia Gaines was born August 19, 1905 in Paducah, Kentucky. Her father, Lawrence T. Bolen, worked at the railroad shop until he died when she was nine years old. She began working at a young age due to her father’s death. She attended Lincoln Elementary School and graduated high school in 1922. She owned a catering business for twenty eight years. Her brother, Manuel, managed an ice cream business. His store was the first and only business in downtown Paducah that was owned by an African American in the 1910s and 1920s. She also states that her brother was the owner of the first taxi business in Paducah, a prominent restaurateur and owned a business that sold mirrors.
Description: Olivia Gaines describes her life as an African American woman in Paducah, Kentucky. She discusses her childhood in a very religious household and how her mother was responsible for construction of the first restrooms at Burks’ Chapel in Paducah. She describes her neighborhood as a mixture of black and white families and that there were never any racial problems. She mentions the business and civic activities of her brother Manuel Bolen. She describes his involvement with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and the Joe Hale murder case. She also mentions that her brother and the N.A.A.C.P. worked on removing segregation signs at local business and public buildings.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Marable, Addie
Date of interview: 1979 November 15
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH106
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Rose, Doris (part 1)
Biographical note: Doris Rose was born in Murray, Kentucky in 1919. She was a lifelong resident of Murray. Her parents were Bessie Houston and Cordis Fair. Her mother graduated from Murray High School but her father only attended grade school. She attended public schools and graduated Murray High School in 1935 at age sixteen. Her first job was at a real estate company working as a typist for a $1 a day. She later worked at a local photographer’s studio for four years earning $1.50 a day. She attended the First Christian Church as a child and the First Baptist Church later in her life. She married Alan Rose in 1939. Her husband joined the Marine Corp in 1943, where he spent a year in California and another year overseas.
Description: Doris Rose discusses her childhood in Murray, Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. She recalls doing chores such as feeding the farm animals, churning butter, sweeping and cleaning coal lamps. Her family home had no running water or electricity. She describes local medical facilities and home remedies. She also describes the effects of the Great Depression and the impact of President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s New Deal policies. During the Great Depression, Rose recalled there being few jobs, no money and her family struggling to survive in a broken economy. She also recalled families and friends gathering at the bus station during the Second World War to bid farewell to the men leaving for military service.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 16
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH135
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Latta, Willie Pharris (part 2)
Biographical note: Willie Pharris Latta was born in Hickman County, Kentucky in 1894. Her father operated an orchard, sold timber and cut logs to build houses. He contracted mastoiditis and died of complications while she was a child. After his death, her mother continued to manage the orchard and sell lumber. At a young age, she contracts typhoid fever from contaminated water in Hickman County. She began school at Mount Moriah but later attended Mount Pleasant. After high school, she moved to Bowling Green, Kentucky to attend college. At age 17, she passed the teacher’s a placement exam and soon afterwards began teaching. In 1912, she married her husband Warren. He managed a farm and raised cattle and chickens. She attended church at Mount Moriah Baptist Church and later Mount Pleasant Methodist Church.
Description: Willie Pharris Latta describes her experiences growing up in rural Hickman County, Kentucky during the first half of the 20th century. She discusses the public schools she attended and making 50 cents an hour staying after class to cleaning chalkboards, sweep and dust. She reflects upon her experiences during the Great Depression and recalls the government rationing certain foods. She mentions her church affiliations and participating in Baptist revivals.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Murray, Nicolette
Date of interview: 1980 November 20
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH134
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Outland, Kathleen C. (part 2)
Biographical note: Kathleen C. Outland was born in Calloway County, Kentucky on October 31, 1918. Her father was William Clifton Caldwell. He was a farmer that grew tobacco, corn and wheat. In his later years, he worked for the Kentucky State Highway Department. Her mother, Rachel Kelso attended grade school in Calloway County and was a member of the Beach Grove Cumberland Presbyterian Church. She attended the Broach School of Calloway County until the school burned down. She graduated from Lynn Grove High School in 1936 at the age of seventeen. She received a scholarship to attend business school at Paducah, but her education was cut short by the flood of 1937. In the fall of 1937, she moved to Detroit, Michigan to work for the department store of Crown & Miller. In July of 1938, she returned to Kentucky and worked for the United States Department of Agriculture. She married Joseph Purdon in 1940, he was a tobacco auctioneer.
Description: Kathleen C. Outland recalls her youth in Calloway County, Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. She describes “tramps” visiting her parent’s farm looking for food and a place to sleep during the Great Depression. She discusses how she spent her days as a young child and her early education. She remembers that on ‘Trade Day’ she and her friends skipped school to catch the event. She reflects upon her life involvement with church and her professional career. She mentions that her church would host all day revival meetings called “dinner on the ground” where they had a community dinner and sang gospel songs. She states that during the Great Depression there was plenty of food from the family farm, but that the family had no money. She expresses her thoughts on Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Harry S. Truman and recalls listening to President Roosevelt’s fireside chats. Outland recalled President Truman visiting Kentucky when the dam was being constructed at Gilbertsville. She also spoke of how farms were taken by imminent domain before the dam was built.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1989 February 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH118
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Adams, Estelle (part 1)
Biographical note: Estelle Adams was born on December 9, 1916 at Murray, Kentucky. Her father was Jim Osborn and her mother was Ethel Clark. Her father farmed and later sharecropped. The family grew corn, beans, tobacco, sorghum and raised pigs and chickens. As a child, she attended the Blood River Church. She and her husband lived in Detroit, Michigan during the Great Depression and Second World War.
Description: Estelle Adams describes life on the family farm in Murray Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. She recalls the chores she performed as a child, such as washing dishes, making beds and canning food. She tells of her father trading pigs, chickens and eggs for dry goods at the local grocery store or with traveling peddlers. She discusses medical remedies, church activities and significant regional events during the Great Depression and Second World War. She speaks of local remedies for common colds such as wild cherry bark, sugar, black pepper cough syrup. She recalls attending a week long ‘Big Meeting’ during a Baptist revival. At height of the Great Depression, she stated there was hardly any farm production and that government programs such as the Tennessee Valley Authority and Civilian Conservation Corps provided jobs which planted trees, built farms and paved the city streets of Murray. Adams made extra money ironing, cleaning houses and babysitting during the depression and war years.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1980 February 14 & 26
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH136
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Sledd, Mary Glenn
Biographical note: Mary Glenn Sledd was a lifelong resident of Paducah, Kentucky. Her childhood was spent in an African American neighborhood in the city. She attended Lincoln Elementary, and graduated from Lincoln High School in 1933. Afterwards she attended Western Kentucky Industrial College. She worked for the Registrar’s Office at Paducah Community College from 1964 to 1976. She later became Chairperson of the Business Department at the college. She also served as clerk of the Washington Street Baptist Church and secretary of the Sunday school. She was a friend of Osceola Dawson whom Sledd considered the “backbone” of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in Paducah.
Description: Mary Glenn Sledd discusses her experiences living in Paducah, Kentucky in an African American community during the 1920s and 1930s. She describes public schools and the educators that taught during segregation. She gives a history of the Washington Street Baptist Church and mentions significant community members. She discusses her feelings about Paducah as a community and the advancements the city has made in racial equality. She also reflects on how Osceola Dawson was a great inspiration to her and her career.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Bates, Mary
Date of interview: 1979 November 2
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH131
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Skinner, Ernesteen
Biographical note: Ernesteen Skinner was born on November 15, 1918 in Calloway County, Kentucky. His parents were Buster and Canary Skinner. His father worked packing tobacco at local farms. He attended Douglas High School, an all black school, in Murray, Kentucky. He was an active member of St. John’s Baptist Church and attended numerous revival meetings sponsored by the church. During the Great Depression, he shucked corn and other jobs to survive. He was drafted into the United States Army in 1943 and was sent to Evansville, Indiana for basic training. He finished his training in Florida, where he learned to build air strips. He served in the Pacific Theater and was stationed in New Guinea, French Haven and the Philippines. He also recalls Bob Hope entertaining his unit during the final year of the war.
Description: Ernesteen Skinner discusses his experiences growing up in Murray, Kentucky during the 1920s and 1930s. He also describes his military service in the United States Army Air Corp during the Second World War. He recalls his years attending a segregated school, his family’s struggle during the Great Depression and his participation in the Baptist Church. He mentions the type of military training he received at Evansville, Indiana and his overseas travels during World War II. He also explains how the war changed his outlook on life and the nation’s economic rebound after the war.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1980 March 25
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH132
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Cooper, Alma C.
Biographical note: Alma Cooper was born in Trigg County, Kentucky on July 16, 1911. Her father was a farmer that raised sorghum for the production and distribution of molasses. She attended schools at Turkey Creek and Mitchell Chapel and graduated from Golden Pond High School. She married at age sixteen. Her first husband farmed tobacco and wheat. She did not work outside the home until her husband passed away.
Description: Alma C. Cooper describes the effects of the Great Depression on a rural farming community in Trigg County, Kentucky. She discusses attending one and two room schools and the disciplinary actions enforced by teachers. She recalls listening to President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s fireside chats on the radio and the coming of the Second World War. She mentions bootleggers at Golden Pond, Kentucky and the Land Between the Lakes region during the prohibition era. She describes that many young men died in her community in the line of military duty and the rise of food prices during the Second World War. Cooper also explains the development of ammunition plants and other armament businesses in Viola and Paducah.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Pasco, Kathryn
Date of interview: 1980 February 12
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH100
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Humphrey, Clara H. (part 2)
Biographical note: Clara H. Humphrey was the only child of Delaine and H. T. Waldrop of Coldwater, Kentucky. Her father managed the ice company at Murray, Kentucky. Her mother worked for the local welfare office and kept the accounting records for the ice company. When in the third grade, her parent’s house was destroyed by fire and her family resided in a local hotel for an entire year until the house was rebuilt. In 1939, she graduated Murray High School at the age sixteen. She attended the University of Missouri and graduated with a degree in journalism in 1943. After college, she worked for the Louisville Courier Journal for three years at the news desk. She later worked for the advertising firm of Foreston and Huff and served as news director of WNBS radio in Murray, Kentucky.
Description: Clara H. Humphrey describes her life in Calloway County, Kentucky from the 1930s to the 1970s. She begins by discussing that her mother’s father was a county judge and that her mother’s grandfather assisted in writing the 1891 Constitution of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. She recalls her father discussing politics with Frank Albert Stubblefield and her family dining regularly with Alben Barkley. She describes having a pet fox and swimming in the community pool near the Murray Ice Company where her parents were employed. As a child, she recalled attending events at Pogue Library, singing Christmas carols at Lowry Auditorium and participating in other events on the Murray State University campus. She describes the effects of the Great Depression on her family and the closure of the First National Bank of Murray. While working for the Louisville Courier Journal, Humphrey recalled a report of a man being lynched. She concludes with a discussion on her time as a news director of WNBS in Murray.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1979 October 21
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH111
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Allbritten, Neva Grey (part 1)
Biographical note: Neva Grey Allbritten was native of Murray, Kentucky. Her mother was originally from Tennessee and her father from Kentucky. As a child, she helped her father at his store and later sold vending and cigarette machines. She graduated valedictorian at Murray High School and received an academic scholarship to attend Murray State Teachers College. She attended college briefly, but dropped out because of health issues. She was a member of the First Christian Church of Murray, where she taught bible school, played piano and sang in the church choir. Allbritten sold war bonds at the City Bank during the Second World War. In her later years she was involved with the Women’s Club and served as president of the club from 1961 to 1962.
Description: Neva Grey Allbritten describes life in Murray, Kentucky during the early half of the 20th century. She describes attending school and church, working at her father’s store, attending social and community activities and events during her childhood and young adulthood. She discusses her family history, as well as detailed descriptions of her home and family life in Murray. She mentions that Murray was originally named Spring Hill due to all the natural springs in the area which she claimed attracted people to the area. As a young child, she remembered roller skating around the newly paved court house square and attending plays and musicals. She also recalled witnessing a touring circus downtown.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 October 4
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH091
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Bates, Mary F.
Biographical note: Mary Bates was born at Paducah, Kentucky on August 16, 1920. Her mother was a domestic worker. Her father worked for railroad shops until he became a church minister. She was a member of the Washington Street Baptist Church for over 50 years. She taught Sunday school, managed sponsored programs and served as the church historian. She received her undergraduate at Lincoln University and acquired a Masters degree at the University of Cincinnati. She taught at public schools in the City of Paducah for 42 years. Bates served as the president of the Women’s Missionary Union, was the Vice President of Church Women United and was a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority.
Description: Mary Bates discusses her experiences as a teacher in Paducah, Kentucky from the 1940s to the 1980s. She details her family history, early childhood, and involvement in the community and church organizations. She also reminisces about the Great Depression and the civil rights movement in Paducah during the 1960s.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Marable, A. C.
Date of interview: 1979 November 30
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH094
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Baker, Elizabeth Jane (part 2)
Biographical note: Jane Baker was born on December 2, 1922 at Murray, Kentucky. She was a lifetime resident of Murray, except for a few years during the Second World War when she lived at several military bases with her husband. Her mother, Gladys Hail (born 1900), grew up in the Kirksey area of Calloway County, Kentucky. Her father, Charlie Hail (born 1893), worked at the Scott & Lester Hardware Company located on the Court Square in Murray. She graduated Murray High School in June of 1941 and married in October of the same year. In early 1942, her husband was drafted into the United States Army and sent to Colorado and then to Washington D.C. where he worked at the Pentagon. Baker followed her husband on his tours of duty and after the war’s conclusion returned to Murray.
Description: Jane Baker describes her life in a small college town in western Kentucky during the Great Depression and the Second World War. She discusses childhood activities, adolescent chores and responsibilities, attending high school, working with her father at the hardware store, food distribution and healthcare, and significant events that occurred in Murray and Calloway County, Kentucky. She spoke of how everyone in town had their own gardens and shared food with neighbors. She also mentioned her family history, her experiences during the Second World War as the wife of an American soldier and offered detailed descriptions of her family home in Murray.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 22
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH092
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Porter, Marion Arundeil
Biographical note: Marion Porter was born on February 10, 1916. His father, James E. Porter, was a concrete contractor in Paducah. His mother ran a salon from the family home. He attended the Lincoln School from elementary to high school. He quit school after the eleventh grade to work with his father. From 1935 to 1939, he hauled coal for the West Kentucky Coal Company. Porter was drafted into the United States Navy in 1943. He traveled from Paducah to Maryland for basic training and then to California. His job was to assist in clearing underwater mines planted by the Japanese. He returned from the service in 1946.
Description: Marion Porter discusses his life experiences as an African American growing up in Paducah, Kentucky. He describes the reason why his family moved to Paducah and that during the flood of 1938 his family remained in their house and took in thirty-three homeless neighbors. During the prohibition era, he remembered bootleggers selling whiskey by the pint or by the glass. The bootleggers would hide their liquor in the fireplace or in the walls. He mentioned that his father assisted in putting down the first concrete sidewalk in Paducah and that he was the first black contractor in the city. He tells of his involvement in church, including being a member of the choir, a trustee and starting the brotherhood organization. He recalled mixing concrete by hand, and making $2.40 a week for installing basements for houses. He concludes the interview by describing his military service in the United States Navy during the Second World War.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Peyton, Bill
Date of interview: 1979 November 18
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH120
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Whayne, Joan Butterworth (part 1)
Biographical note: Joan Butterworth Whayne was born in 1925 at Bowling Green, Kentucky. Her father established the Butterworth Clinic in Murray, Kentucky. She attended the Murray Training School where she graduated at age sixteen in 1942. She began college the following fall at Murray State Teachers College. She remained at Murray State for three years but transferred to University of Kentucky. After she graduated in 1946, she spent time in Washington D.C., Memphis, New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Fort Worth. She returned to Murray where her husband worked for Whayne’s father at the Butterworth Clinic. Later in life, her husband worked as a regional medical officer in Europe, Asia and South America.
Description: Joan Butterworth Whayne describes her life experiences from the 1930s to the 1970s. She describes her childhood in Calloway County, Kentucky during the Great Depression and the Second World War. She recalls attending the Murray State Training School, social activities and regional events. She remembers her college years, extracurricular activities and career as a real estate agent. She describes her travels with her husband, who was a medic in the United States Army, during and following the Second World War. She also mentions her father being overseas during the First World War.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Anderson, Margaret R.
Date of interview: 1988 November 1
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH129
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.
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Title of Collection: Lifestyles - Oral History
Name of person interviewed: Hatcher, W. O.
Biographical note: W. O. Hatcher was born in Murray, Kentucky on December 21, 1916. His father was a carpenter and a painter and his mother worked at home. His father found work in Hazel when he was in the seventh grade and family relocated there. His father died soon afterwards. He took his first job at his uncle’s tobacco barn for 14 cents an hour at age fifteen. Hatchers worked for the Works Progress Administration pouring concrete streets and for the Civilian Conservation Corps planting pine and locust trees in Murray.
Description: W. O. Hatcher describes his life in Murray and Hazel, Kentucky from the 1920s to the 1940s. He describes that his family home was lit with kerosene lamps, heated by a coal fireplace and drew water from a well in the backyard. He describes his daily chores such as lawn mowing, weeding the garden and picking blackberries and strawberries to sell at the local grocery store. He recalled as a child attending such events as square dances, candy pulling and playing games such as kick the can and hide-and-seek. His childhood dream was to become a mail clerk on a train. During the Great Depression, Hatcher recalled there being a shortage of money to buy food. He mentioned that the depression made it difficult for him to buy shoes and he went without them for months. He described working for the National Youth Administration, the Works Progress Administration and the Civilian Conservation Corps during the 1930s.
Descriptors: Jackson Purchase (Ky.) -- Social life and customs.
Interviewed by: Pasco, Kathryn
Date of interview: 1980 January 17
Contributed by: Jackson Purchase Oral History Project.
Identification number: OH109
Location: Murray State University Special Collections & Archives.