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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Josephine Glenn, June 27, 1977. Interview H-0022. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Changing technology in the textile mills

Glenn explains how the changing technologies used in the mills altered the type of work the employees did.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Josephine Glenn, June 27, 1977. Interview H-0022. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

CLIFF KUHN:
At Swepsonville, did you do pretty much the same kind of job all the way through, or did you change jobs?
JOSEPHINE GLENN:
When you worked down there, when you worked in preparation, they did everything in there in preparation, and you had to do a little bit of everything. If your job was piled up or was standing or if they needed you worse on something else, they'd take you to another of the jobs. And you'd say, "Well, I don't know how to do this." They'd say, "Well, there it is; do the best you can with it." [Laughter] And it was learn the best way you could, and I
CLIFF KUHN:
What did people in Swepsonville do when the mill closed down in 1970?
JOSEPHINE GLENN:
Quite a few of them were about ready to retire, and others went other places and found jobs.
CLIFF KUHN:
How had things changed over those twenty-nine years that you worked at Swepsonville?
JOSEPHINE GLENN:
They made a lot of improvements. They bought a lot of modern machinery over at the mill, and they built a new weave room. They put in a lot of new looms.
CLIFF KUHN:
Do you think the work was harder in 1970 than it was in 1941, or easier?
JOSEPHINE GLENN:
I don't think you had to stay on your toes as much in the later period.
CLIFF KUHN:
Why is that?
JOSEPHINE GLENN:
I guess one thing that made a difference, you get used to working on a job when you stay on it for a long time, and you learn how to take advantage of it. You learn the shortcuts. I don't mean by that that you do sloppy work. I just mean that you learn how to take advantage of it and get along with it faster.