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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Hoy Deal, July 3 and 11, 1979. Interview H-0117. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

In youth, eagerness to leave school and make money

Deal did not make it past the fifth grade, he recalls. Schoolwork bored him, and he was more interested in making money; when he was young kids did not have spending money like they did at the time of the interview.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Hoy Deal, July 3 and 11, 1979. Interview H-0117. 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

Did you ever get to go to school?
I went, but I didn't make much headway learning when I went. I know one thing: when I'd set down of a night, I'd set down and go to sleep. My daddy drug me to bed. [Laughter] If I'd've had the time to get my lessons up, and study my lessons like I should have. I'd have been further along in school than what I was if I would have took interest in learning. But I did't take interest in learning enough to try to learn anything.
Do you regret that now?
I sure do.
Do you think you could have maybe gotten …
I could have been a couple of grades higher in school than what I… I didn't get no further than the fifth grade. I fooled around and didn't… I could have made a couple grades more if I would have studied harder, I have an idea. But I was just a crazy young'un like and didn't put too much… I was more interested in doing something to get money right along then. Times was harder, and you didn't get much money, and us young'uns, if we got shoes and clothes and books and stuff to go to school, why, that's about all you got then, and what you eat. You didn't get no money to fool around and blow in like young'uns do now. Now when young'uns get big enough to get out and do little things and get a few nickels… This place here, the young'uns runs around over it all the time, young'uns that ain't big enough to hardly carry trash and put it in the trash box get out and want to do something to make a nickel or a dime, carry your trash out and get you to give them something to eat, some candy or an apple or something. It was altogether different back then when I growed up. If five or six of us got a dime's worth of candy, we thought we was lucky.