Documenting the American South Logo
Loading
Title: Oral History Interview with Arthur Little, December 14, 1979. Interview H-0132. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Electronic Edition.
Author: Little, Arthur, interviewee
Interview conducted by Hall, Jacquelyn
Funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this interview.
Text encoded by Jennifer Joyner
Sound recordings digitized by Aaron Smithers Southern Folklife Collection
First edition, 2007
Size of electronic edition: 208 Kb
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
2007.
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text.
The electronic edition is a part of the UNC-Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2007-00-00, Celine Noel, Wanda Gunther, and Kristin Martin revised TEIHeader and created catalog record for the electronic edition.
2007-05-14, Jennifer Joyner finished TEI-conformant encoding and final proofing.
Source(s):
Title of recording: Oral History Interview with Arthur Little, December 14, 1979. Interview H-0132. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series H. Piedmont Industrialization. Southern Oral History Program Collection (H-0132)
Author: Jacquelyn Hall
Title of transcript: Oral History Interview with Arthur Little, December 14, 1979. Interview H-0132. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series H. Piedmont Industrialization. Southern Oral History Program Collection (H-0132)
Author: Arthur Little
Description: 200 Mb
Description: 52 p.
Note: Interview conducted on December 14, 1979, by Jacquelyn Hall; recorded in Newton, North Carolina.
Note: Transcribed by Jean Houston.
Note: Forms part of: Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Series H. Piedmont Industrialization, Manuscripts Department, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Note: Original transcript on deposit at the Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Editorial practices
An audio file with the interview complements this electronic edition.
The text has been entered using double-keying and verified against the original.
The text has been encoded using the recommendations for Level 4 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines.
Original grammar and spelling have been preserved.
All quotation marks, em dashes and ampersand have been transcribed as entity references.
All double right and left quotation marks are encoded as "
All em dashes are encoded as —

Interview with Arthur Little, December 14, 1979.
Interview H-0132. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Little, Arthur, interviewee


Interview Participants

    ARTHUR LITTLE, interviewee
    JACQUELYN HALL, interviewer

[TAPE 1, SIDE A]


Page 1
[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]
JACQUELYN HALL:
… spreading the material out on… Is there …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Spread it up one way and come back the next. That makes a right and a left.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And then it moves on a conveyor belt SIDE and it's cut. And those men are cutters. Is that what they're called?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They're glove cutters.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And how many layers is it?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Forty-eight single layers.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And then it's put in the boxes.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Put in boxes, and the boxes then are put in buggies, you might say. And they're rolled out close to where the operators, the glove sewers, can get a-hold of them, and they take them to their machines and lay them out and sew them, and they put them back in the same box. And they shove it on down the line a little further, and then that wrist is put on. And then it goes one little step further, and they turn it, reverse it, and put the right side out. Most anything sewn is made wrong side out, as you call it, and then it has to be reversed, packed, and they inspect it all they can. Of course, there's some will get by. But then it's put on the conveyor and rolls down to the inspection table where they take them apart and go through them again. And then they're packed. There are twelve pairs to the… Which is called a dozen gloves. And then they're tied in bundles or either packed in cartons. It all depends on how they order it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And you told me that this machine that does the bundling was invented by Cyrus McCormick?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
The knotter is the same thing that Cyrus McCormick put on the oldtime reaper. And it's not been changed, not one bit. It's got the same features and everything. It's the same knotter; it's the same thing.

Page 2
JACQUELYN HALL:
And the sewing machines that those gloves are made on are called…
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We have different types of machines. We have flatbed machines, where the needle goes straight up and down. Then we have machines that the needle is on a slight slant, those little black machines.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Are they called angle machines?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They're just angle needle machines, and they're faster, but they can't sew as heavy a goods as the flatbed machines.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Those heavier gloves you're making, were you calling them "hot …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They go mostly into steel mills or people where they handle hot metal.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So you call them "hot mill gloves"?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We call them "hot mill gloves", is what they've always been called. And they go mostly into heavy industries where there's a lot of heat.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And they're made somewhat differently, aren't they?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
The palm part of it is quilted together, two, sometimes three layers quilted together. And it's got a band on so you can sling it off if your hand gets caught in heat, you see.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And it's made in more separate pieces, isn't it?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It's made practically the same way, except the hot mill operators here don't make but parts of it, and then they're brought together, and the main operator puts the fingers on all at once and closes the glove, sews it together, and then puts on the band. If they don't put on the band, it goes to the gauntlet outfit, and they put on those gauntlets.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And then those gloves are turned one at a time.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They're turned before that gauntlet's put on there. That machine is a cylinder machine; it goes around. Now if it's just the band, they put it on, and it's turned with the rest of the gloves.

Page 3
JACQUELYN HALL:
But they have to be turned by hand.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We turn all the hot mill gloves here by hand. Some glove factories turn them on those automatics, but they tear up a lot of them. Then they're inspected and packed. They're usually shipped six dozen to the case or twelve dozen to the case; it depends on the order.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And then you make a few gloves that have knit wristbands.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, they're called knit wrist gloves. And there the glove operator makes the whole glove, except the operator that puts the knit wrist on. And then it's turned. It's not turned until they put the knit wrist on.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you make more leather gloves at one time than you do now?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, we made more leather gloves at one time than we do now. Now I'll tell you—of course, this is not for publishing—we've got a leather plant over at Banner Elk. The Banner Elk Glove Company.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Yes, I've seen it, I think.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
That's my plant over there, too. As a matter of fact, we've got six plants. You ever been through Mountain City, Tennessee?
JACQUELYN HALL:
I've heard of it.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It's on beyond Boone about twenty miles. We've got a plant there bigger than this one. It don't make a thing but single gloves, and they make about 7,000 dozen a day.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What kind of glove?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Singles, where they just put the knit wrist on it. The others are double, so what is quilted together are double gloves.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you say that it's hard to get people to work on the leather gloves?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, we can't hardly get anybody to work here on gloves. It's

Page 4
too hard a work. There's so many other things to do.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Is it harder work to do leather gloves?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, it's a lot harder to do leather gloves. [Interruption]
JACQUELYN HALL:
Is it harder to find …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, it's harder to get anybody to stay with leather operation than it is the cotton operation. We find it that way. And since we have another operation leather, we're not pressing it too hard.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Let me go back a little bit and talk about you. When were you born, and where did you grow up?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I was born August 14, 1908, and I was raised just about two miles, as the crow flies, right in this direction here. I was raised on a cotton, grain, and dairy farm. I used to deliver milk through the city of Newton when I went to high school. And when I graduated from high school in 1927, I was sent to State College to school, and there I went to school and was educated to be a CPA. But I got cold feet. I got out of college in 1931 at the bottom of the Depression, and instead of taking up the accounting later, why, I got into the glove industry.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How big was your father's farm?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It was about 250 acres.
JACQUELYN HALL:
That's a pretty good-sized farm.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, we still own it. Me and my brother got part of it, and then I bought another one besides that. We're still farmers.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you know anything about your grandparents, where they came from or anything about your history?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes. My grandfather, my great-grandfather, my great-great-grandfather, my great-great-great-grandfather, and my great-great-great-great-grandfather came from Pennsylvania to Salisbury about the year 1750. And he

Page 5
had a son; his oldest son was Peter. He was in the American Revolution. After the American Revolution, he moved up here north of Conover and raised two boys. They were Peter, Jr. and Jacob. They married Hunnsucker sisters. And they had a son. The oldest son was [unknown] He had a son George Washington Little, and he had a son Leroy Little, and Leroy Little had me. So I know it from 1750 this way.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How was that story passed on to you?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Different members of the family just kept handing it down to us. It goes back to Captain Daniel Little, he was called. He's buried right in the middle of the graveyard in Salisbury, which turned out to be the Cemetery. He died December 10, 1775. That was before the American Revolution. He was captain of the colonial militia there; that's where he got his name. So he died before the American Revolution, which one year. Of course, all of my folks have traced back to get DAR papers. They go straight on to him, too. Even Peter, the same year his son.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What about your mother's family?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
My mother's family I don't know quite that far back. She was Dalsey Hufmann, and my great-grandfather was Alfred Hufmann. He was in the War Between the States, and he had a son that was in the Army, too. His son was killed at Frazier's Farm, which was a small skirmish out southeast of Richmond. And the enemy was so close on them, they didn't have a chance to bury him. They took his belongings off of him and wrapped him with a blanket and covered him with leaves. Now some side of the family says he went back the next day and buried him. My mother never did tell me that, though. That's the length of that. I've not had time to check it out. But there's Hufmanns all through this country, and it goes in with the

Page 6
Sigmons, too.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were they all farmers?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They were all farmers. They were all laborers. Now Hufmann was a machinist or a mechanic, too. He could do blacksmith work. He could even make darning needles and put a hole in it, back over a hundred years ago.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Any storekeepers or lawyers or …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No. We are all of German descent and people that worked for a living on the farm or things connected with the farm. Of course, in later years some of us turned out to be… They've got the inheritance from my great-grandfather Hufmann, and they've turned out to be carpenters and architects and tinners and what-have-you.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you work on the farm when you were coming up?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, gosh, yes, I worked on the farm. As a matter of fact, me and my wife lived on the farm until 1950, and then I moved to Newton to put my twin daughters in school at Newton, where they had me to go to school when I was a kid.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When you went to school, did you go in and board with somebody?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, no, I walked and rode a bicycle. It was just two miles across there. I drove an automobile when I was fifteen years old, delivering milk through the city of Newton. Of course, they wasn't so tight on a driver's license then. As a matter of fact, you didn't have a driver's license. But I used to deliver milk all through the city of Newton when I was from fifteen on up till nineteen. I graduated, and then I didn't deliver milk much after that. My father retired in 1929 and left the farm. As a matter of fact, I lived with him and Mother for eighteen months after we left the farm, and I walked back to the farm every day and helped my brother with the farm. And then about 1930 we divided the farm between my

Page 7
brother and I.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were there any slaveowners in your family?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes. My great-grandfather owned eighteen slaves. My grandfather owned one one time, but he got killed. A tree fell on him. He had so many boys of his own, I guess he figured he didn't need any. But my great-grandfather was a slaveowner. All through our family, we've never found where they ever had any trouble with their slaves, that they always liked each other, and they worked in the fields with the slaves. They didn't have many.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were they all Democrats, mostly?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I think up to my great-grandfather, but after that, why, it went the other way.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Republicans?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. They tell on my grandfather that he wrote a write-in vote for Abraham Lincoln. Me and my brother consider ourselves to be the oldest Republicans in the country, just about.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When the Civil War came, then, were they against secession?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. My grandfather hid out. George Washington was taken to the army, but he escaped from them and hid out, and then he hid out with a number of his cousins. One of them was killed by the home guard. They lived over in Alexander County where they didn't have but a few slaves, and they just didn't believe in slavery in the first place. Now my great-grandfather, who had slaves, he was looking the other way. But there was a division there.
JACQUELYN HALL:
There was a division in the family.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, it was at that time, but it never did amount to anything. They didn't like my grandfather because he hid out. Well, he wasn't the only one that hid out. The neighborhood was full of boys that hid out.

Page 8
This one first cousin of my grandfather got shot at a cornshucking one night. They'd come in and help. They'd slip in from the end of the fields and help pick cotton and pull corn or anything like that. But they were over there in a neighborhood where they had no slaves, and they just absolutely didn't believe in it. And, of course, they had sense enough to know that we could never win that war. I think they ought to take every book that mentions the Civil War… (I say "Civil War." That's what it was.) And burn them up. That was the biggest waste of energy and life and blood that's ever been in the human race. It's the biggest war that's ever been fought between two people that speak the same language.
JACQUELYN HALL:
That's right.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We've lost more people in that war than we have in all other wars put together. Disgrace. What was it over? Nothing. Turned out to be nothing.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Are you saying that the boys that were hiding out to keep out of the army would come in and help with the cornshucking and then change back to hiding?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. See, here is the way it worked. Some of the boys could volunteer for home guard service, that is, getting around to keep the boys in the service. They had a job to keep their boys in the service. To round them up and take them back, they escaped so much.
JACQUELYN HALL:
This county, though, voted for secession, didn't it?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, the State of North Carolina went to… Well, it's just in the paper here. They cut off the men. I'm reading about the Charlotte men. [unknown] the same day that North Carolina seceded from the Union, in 1861. I don't remember the date, but it's in the Charlotte paper today.

Page 9
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did it cause hard feelings between your family and the southern Democrats in the area?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, yes, there was to some extent, but over in Alexander County most everybody felt that way except the older ones that had had some slaves. It wasn't as bitter in the neighborhoods as it was in the American Revolution. That was so bitter. Oh, that was bitter. You know, a lot of families had to leave here on account of it. Some of them, I read not too long ago, went to Nova Scotia and all up into Canada. But it wasn't that bitter.
JACQUELYN HALL:
After the Civil War, in the 1880's and '90's, did you have any relatives that joined the Populist Party?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, my folks were in the Populist Party.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, really?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. You see, that Populist Party came in here before, really, the Republican Party got very much in the… Yes, when the Populist Party went out, it joined the Republican Party. Oh, we had Congressmen elected in the Populist Party. Shuford was one, I remember. Of course, I don't
JACQUELYN HALL:
Which Shuford was that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
That was the Shufords over here on South Fork River. Some of these Shufords, it seems, probably would know. He was elected on the Populist ticket.1
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you remember any stories about the Populist Party that you could tell me?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Not particularly, except I've heard rumors and things that there was a lot of gunfire between each other. I remember this one nigger when I was a young boy. He was a driver for one of these fellows runing on the Populist Party, and they started shooting at him, and he said, "I got down in the buggy as low as I could to keep the middle horse a-going as fast as I could, and the old boss was sticking his head up over the back

Page 10
seat and shooting." I heard those things, but those are rumors that I've heard, but [unknown]. It wasn't peaceful altogether.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What did the Populist Party stand for around here?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
More or less what the Republican Party stands for now, conservative. They were the conservative part of the party. And of course they stood more or less for equal rights for the Negro, too. They were probably against the Ku Klux Klan, but they had to have theKu Klux Klan back in those days, of course. If you read history, you couldn't have never done what …
JACQUELYN HALL:
Back during the Reconstruction period?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, they had to have that. No question about it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Why is that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, because you never would control the nigger at all. You just wouldn't have no… You just couldn't control him at all. He wouldn't work; he wouldn't do nothing. And the carpetbagger would think you owed him a living and all that stuff, you know. Go down to the old State Capitol. You see where the stones are all broke off the steps? Well, they say that it come about by rolling whiskey barrels down the steps, and break them off. It was under carpetbagger government. We couldn't have existed under such as that.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Was the Klan strong in this area during Reconstruction?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, it was strong all from here on through the South. Sure it was, and they did a lot of good. Of course, there was a lot of… It's just like everything, you know. It's the way with anything the human element's got anything to do with. It'll swing from one extreme to the other. And then other people got to taking it up. If they had a spite at somebody, they'd give him a good whipping and they'd pin it on the Ku Klux Klan when it wasn't. See.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you have people that were in the Klan in those days?

Page 11
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, yes, all my folks were in the Klan.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What kind of people would have been in the Klan at that time?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
The people that wanted to try to set up a government that we could live under, and wanted their laws obeyed some way or another, and keep the nigger in his place. He had to be kept in his place. If you didn't, why… Carpetbagger government through here was terrible, and further south it was worse.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were the same people in the Klan that later on joined the Populist Party?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, they was sent[unknown] through there, yes.
JACQUELYN HALL:
But isn't that a contradiction?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, it evoluted; it didn't just change overnight. Of course, the Klan through here wasn't very active many years after the War. Things began to settle down and the Democratic Party began to get hold of the government a little better. But immediately after the War, under the carpetbagger and all that stuff that was feeding to us from the South, why, that was the only recourse to keep the black man in his place. Some people don't believe that, but, now, I do.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were any of your relatives elected on the Populist Party ticket?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, I've had no politicians in my family. I had a first cousin that was chairman of the board of county commissioners here a few years ago.
JACQUELYN HALL:
But they were supporters.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, they were supporters of the Populist Party.
JACQUELYN HALL:
About the Klan, have you been reading about this stuff that's been going on in Greensboro?2
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, that's altogether a different… That's not even an offshot of the old Klan.

Page 12
JACQUELYN HALL:
This is a completely different thing.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, yes. I don't have no sympathy for them. I think it's out of place. I don't think we need it. I don't think we need the Communist Party, either. So there you go. It's the misfits on both sides. No, the Klan lived its day, and after that, why, I think it was out of place.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So you graduated from high school, and you went straight off to college after that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I went straight to college.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you have other brothers and sisters that had gone to college?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, I was the only one. I have just only one full brother, and I had a half-sister and a half-brother that were older. They went into what would be considered high school here at old Catawba College. You know, Catawba College was first located here at Newton, and they went there in what was called the prep school at that time, and they went in that pretty far.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How did it come about that you got to go off to State?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, they had just raised me that way. I didn't know it would be any other way, that's all.
JACQUELYN HALL:
You always knew you were going to go to college.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I was to have gone to Columbia University in the fall of '31 to get my master's degree in business administration, but things was so tough, and I felt like I'd been a liability long enough. And I had my credits. I remember I took a dollar bill and sent it to State College, and they sent them to Columbia University. All of our seminars and most all of our textbooks were written by professors out of Columbia University. Therefore, most all our boys went to get their master's degree in business administration, went to Columbia University. You could get it in a year at that time, but it'd take two years now. And it would have taken two years at Harvard at that time, too, and Yale. I just regret it so bad

Page 13
I could break down and cry that I didn't go. [Voice breaks.]
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, really?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
But I didn't.
JACQUELYN HALL:
That happened to a lot of people in the Depression.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I could have went anyhow. I was still a single boy, and marriage was off a few years, but I declare, things was tough. You can't imagine how blue things was in 1931. And to this day, I don't buy no stock, because I was in school to study banking, financing, and all kinds of investments when that crash come. I just can't do it. I just can't buy stock. I can buy gold. Can't buy stocks, I just can't. So many families just wiped out. There were a lot of them here at Newton, too, just completely wiped out. They had everything they had in stock. My daddy was never a stock man. He never had any stock in anything. We had it in farm land, and, of course, farm land went down low, low, low, but it came back. But you can't come back with stocks when it's wiped out, and the company is bought and taken over by somebody else, you see. You just can't do it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What special memories do you have of your years in college?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Loafing around with nothing to do, to tell you the truth.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, really?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We didn't have no classes in the afternoon. Of course, I know I studied. I done my studying in the library, too, a while. But what I got didn't come easy. I majored in accounting, and that's a lot of work, a lot of bookkeeping. But I didn't have lab but one year, from two to four, three days a week. No kidding, they paid my way all the way. My daddy just give me a checkbook with…
JACQUELYN HALL:
Those are the checks that paid your way to college?

Page 14
ARTHUR LITTLE:
There's the checks that put me through school.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Wow. Had he saved up enough money from farming to do this?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, my father was pretty well anchored. Yes. Of course, you could go to school at State College then for about six hundred dollars a year, and eat in the dining hall, good eats.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Before we move on to your career, I wanted to ask you just a little bit more about your childhood. What kind of person was your mother? What do you remember about her?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
My mother was, of course, a heavy-set person, and she was a hard worker and a wonderful housekeeper and worked in the field a many a many a day, just right with us. Of course, we all worked. Me and my brother and my father and mother raised a lot of wheat and grain to feed the dairy cattle, and we had colored tenants that raised the cotton. This is not for publication, but my father at one time was the second biggest cotton farmer in this county. I remember in the hot wheat harvest, my mother would always bring up in the evening, about two-thirty or three o'clock, a little jug of wine and cake and pickles to give not only to us but any of the hands that was helping us, which she said was a custom that was handed down to her from all the Germans, Dutch. They claimed that good wine would counteract the bacteria in your stomach from drinking water when it was hot. There's a lot of things. And, of course, my mother was wonderful to bake persimmon pudding. And she could make the best sausage and liver mush that you ever eat. And, of course, we raised our own hogs and our own beef and all that stuff.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were you closer to your father or to your mother?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, I don't know whether it would make any …
[END OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]

[TAPE 1, SIDE B]

[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE B]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We came with a couple of my friends that I know in the neighborhood. They went to a different school, but I knew them; we were farm boys. When he caught hold of my hand, and when I got on the train he said, "Son, you do what's right." That I'll never forget. [Tears come to his eyes.]
JACQUELYN HALL:
When he was sending you off to college?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. And, of course, I came back home a lot. That was in the days when they called it "bumming," you know. It started in that age. And you could bum home faster than you could on a train. But today there's been so much… You know, that's the way; a good thing gets going, why, some people ruin it, you see. So many holdups and all. You can't get out here in the road and bum anywhere now, but I used to. Of course, I never did leave to bum up here unless I had money to catch a bus or a train. I never took a car down to use while I was in school there. We had cars that I could have taken, but I didn't. And my father would have let me taken, I know, my senior year, but I didn't. I didn't have to take any examinations much during my senior year. Of course, it's not that way now. You have to take exams. You don't get good enough grades to get out of examinations, do you?
JACQUELYN HALL:
No.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, we could then, back in those days.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What did you do when you first came back home then in '31?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, I was glad I had a farm to come to then. Most all of my classmates owed for their education and had no farm to go to nor no nothing. A lot of them took jobs in a cotton mill, just running a loom or weaving. Some of them took jobs with Jewel Tea Company delivering

Page 16
tea from house to house. Some of them went to work with the State Highway on road construction. Nobody had a job. Nobody got a job. Why, the ones that had got jobs in 1930 was back on the campus looking for jobs. In '30; I graduated in '31.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So you came back and …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Stayed here at the farm about five or six years, and then I kept books in Hickory for a trucking line for about three years, and then I kept books at a hosiery finishing plant for about three years, and then I started this thing. I was a little too old for the service. I'm seventy-two years old. I started this thing in 1945, me and my brother and sister-in-law.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Tell me a little bit about your brother and sister-in-law and how they …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, we lived on the same farm. They lived on his side that he had, and I lived on the side that I had. And they had had experience in the glove business.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Where had they gotten their experience?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
At Newton Glove down here. So we started in a little building uptown. It was right where Bowman Drug Company now stands. It was a big old brick building there; it had two storeys to it, and we started there.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What had they done at Newton Glove?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, they were plain workers. She was a sewer, sewed gloves. And my brother turned and formed.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Was he farming and turning at …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, he farmed and worked there, too. Him and his wife worked there, I think, seven or eight years while I was working in Hickory with the bookkeeping and different things.
JACQUELYN HALL:
You had gotten married meanwhile?

Page 17
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Both of us had. He got married before I got through college. I got out in '31, and I got married in '33.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How did you meet your wife?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We were raised in the same neighborhood. Her father's farm adjoined my father's back on the creek, on the branch. We used to meet back there and sleigh ride in the snow, all together, the whole family.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When did you start courting her?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well [Laughter] , a long time. We was courting seven years.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, really?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, we all through when I was in college and then three years after I got out of college.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What took you so long before you got married?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, I don't know. We just wasn't in no hurry. She was teaching school. She was luckier than I was. She went to teaching school right out of high school. Well, she got two summer sessions at Lenoir-Rhyne. Started teaching in a little country school out here, and then she'd go to school in the summertime and then go to Saturday school and all. She had it rough to get through school back then.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Where did you all get the capital to start a business of your own?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, it didn't take as much as we thought it did. We had collected a little money along. Cotton prices began to get better. Then we had worked off, too, you see. We lived at home and didn't have to spend money for eats, you know. And then my wife taught school.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So you had just been saving.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We were thrifty, and we saved our money. It didn't take as much money as you thought it did.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How much money did you expect it to take?

Page 18
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I thought it would take at least $20,000, but we started with less than fifteen. In a very small way, of course.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What made you decide to start a glove mill? How did that idea even come up?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, I knew that was coming.
JACQUELYN HALL:
[Laughter]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I don't know whether I ought to tell all these things. I don't know where it's going.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Well, it's just going into a collection in the library, but is there something …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, when I was delivering milk in the city of Newton as a boy from fifteen to eighteen years old, we had to get up early in the morning, milk the milk, and cool it, and bottle it. And you had to get up early to do that and get to school then after you delivered it. And I'd go by Newton Glove, and it was maybe about three times as big as this complete office. And I'd think to myself, "Some day, if I could just grow up to have me a little business, a glove mill like this, and not have to deliver this damnable cold milk, I'd be a happy boy." And that never did get out of my mind; it never did. I never had a desire to get into anything else.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Wow.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Never had a desire to get into anything else. Because all during the Depression, they would run at least two days a week when other companies were busted and closed for years on end. In Newton, I don't know of but two things that stood that thing, and that was the old Newton Oil and Fertilizer Company and the two banks. That one bank there, when Roosevelt closed the banks, they said was the strongest bank in North America. It didn't even owe a corresponding bank any money. You know, banks work through each other. But it didn't even owe a correspondent

Page 19
bank anything. We were lucky through here. We didn't have any banks to go under. Not in Catawba County. Catawba County through that bank holidays, all our financial institutions were solid. They opened on time and everything else. Which shows that not only the people that [were] running the bank, but that our stock of people here are conservative and thrifty, or was at that time. [Laughter] I can't say for that now. They saved their money. They tried to save their money, and they tried to… In other words, they was just down-to-earth good German Dutch people.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So was it your idea to start the mill then, rather than your brother's? More your idea than his?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, yes, it was mine. I was the originator. I had to beg him awful to get him to come with me.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were they kind of afraid to take the chance?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I think they was afraid, yes. Was afraid to take the step.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What did they think might happen? Were they afraid that you might lose your savings?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They figured that we'd probably go broke.
JACQUELYN HALL:
[Laughter]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
But we didn't.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Tell me about how you started out.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We lived out in the country, and we had at that time a Lum and Abner telephone. Do you ever hear of them? The old-time telephones, you know, that you pick it up and you twist a crank and ring it. In my workings at Hickory, I had got in touch with the Cutters' Exchange in Nashville, who catered to the needle trade. I wrote them and asked them if they had any machines. I knew the kind of machines we'd have to get. And they answered me back, and they said they did. Well, the man that

Page 20
answered it was a man that I had been looking for and I couldn't find, and we didn't know what happened to him. But he used to sell machines for Union Special Machine Company, and of course during the War they had no machines to sell. So he went back to Nashville and worked with Cutters' Exchange redoing machines. So I got on the Lum and Abner telephone and called him and talked to him, and I bought twelve from him. He sent them here, and we set them up, and we made our first gloves in September of '45. We had about twelve operators to start with, and we added more as time went along.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How did you get your first workers? Were they people that you knew?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, they was people here that we knew. My brother's wife had a couple sisters that knew how to make gloves, and we trained … [Interruption] [unknown].3 Of course, you can't imagine those times. We had to get priorities to get the material to work with. It was just after V-J Day. V-J Day was in August. We started in September, and the demand for gloves was tremendous, just tremendous. And we made gloves and sold them.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So you had a hard time getting the material?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, I didn't have a hard time, because this all was made down here at Newton, close by, and I was in on the drag and I knew all the people, and they knew us, too. And I had priorities. I went to Charlotte and got priorities to work with cloth. Cloth was the biggest thing to get priorities. We could get thread pretty easy. And I got a good bit of my equipment from Mrs. Rankin's husband, [Adrian L.] Shuford. Oh, he was a great friend of mine. And we'd talk to each other five and six times a day on the telephone.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, really?

Page 21
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. So we got a small cutting press from him. And then we went up there with a tractor and put it on skids and just pulled it up the street and put it in the back of that building and pulled it on up to its place with the tractor. I sold him a lot of gloves, too. I sold him 10,000 dozen gloves the day the Korean War started. We had already moved down here. This is built on the back end of a small farm we own. It runs from here plumb on up to the other road. And I sold him a lot of gloves; he bought a lot of gloves from us.
JACQUELYN HALL:
You mean you would sell him finished gloves and …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, and he'd resell them.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Why would you do that, rather than sell them directly yourself?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well [Laughter] , he had been so good to me, I couldn't help but sell to him. He never loaned me a dime; he never went on my note. Well, nobody never went on my note for anything.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Was there very much competition among the different …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, we was in competition with each other. Yes, all the time, but I always tried to stay clear of them if I could. I remember I spent one night up near Richmond to see Reynolds Metal Company. I called on them on Monday morning, and they said, "Oh, you're from Conover. Do you know Shuford down there at Warlong Glove?" I said, "I sure do. You buy gloves from him?" He said, "Yes. Is he a Jew?" I said, "Oh, hell, no." [Laughter] I told him this, Ray. I said, "No, hell, he comes from some of the oldest stock in the country, Shuford." But he did talk funny. Oh, he was smart. He could handle two telephones the best of any fellow I ever seen. He fooled with stocks. But the poor fellow didn't know danger. He didn't know financial danger if he'd see it coming down the road. But he was just lucky. He didn't have enough training to know stocks.

Page 22
JACQUELYN HALL:
But he didn't get into any trouble?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, no. Well, in the Depression we all was in trouble then, but he come out of it with a flash Well, that's his son that runs Jackson Buff. You've probably interviewed them.
JACQUELYN HALL:
I've talked to him on the phone, and then I interviewed his mother.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They're fine people; they're great glove people[unknown]
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did Warlong Glove go out of business?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, they sold out.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When was that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, it's been a number of years. The Riegal Textile Corporation bought them. That's not up to me to be a-telling. They ought to tell that to you themselves. But it was a big deal.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What were the biggest problems you had during those first ten …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Getting them made was the big problem. Getting them produced.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What was …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, you've just got to train help and all. It was slow. It would take from eight to twelve months to train an operator to make gloves.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, really? Eight to twelve months?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, sir. It sure does. Sweatin' blood.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were your first twelve operators all women?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Were they young or old or what …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
A couple of them's retired now. They were
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you hire mostly young girls?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, when we'd get into training, we'd hire young people from eighteen to twenty-five years old.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So you preferred young people.

Page 23
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, because they would be with you much longer, you see. When we went up to Mountain City to put up this big plant… They say we've been over there seventeen years, and I know some of the young girls are showing a little age on them. And our people from seventeen to twenty-five years old. Then we had one girl to lie about her age. She was twenty-eight, and oh, did she make a glove. She's a-working today. She married an Eisenhower, and the Eisenhowers are in our family, too. It's the same line as General Eisenhower. General Eisenhower was supposed to have lived in North Carolina, but they went to Texas. The General was born in Denton [Denison], Texas. And when he was about two years old, they moved up to Abilene, Kansas.
JACQUELYN HALL:
But that's just the same line.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It's the same line, but it goes back to around the 1700's and the early 1800's.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How would you pay people during the time they were being trained?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Of course, we had the minimum wages, you know. All the time you had to pay them the minimum wage, and then of course we would set production. When they got to making more, to pay their own way, why, then they could get to making extra money for themselves.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How does piecework work, exactly? You pay a certain amount an hour …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
All the glove factories that I know of, most of us through here work in six dozen to the pack, we call it, and then you pay them so much per pack. And by the way, this is the work glove hub of the world. More work gloves are made and controlled from this point than any other spot on earth. That's not for big publication, but that's a fact. It's been that way for years.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you have any idea how many people work in glove manufacturing around here?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I don't know how many works in it now, but there's a thousand

Page 24
or more, I reckon. You see, we've all got plants away from here. There was two plants running here for thirty years, and nobody ever started another one until I came along.
JACQUELYN HALL:
That would be Warlong Glove and Newton Glove?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. Then the next year there was another one started. Then after Riegal liquidated, there was another one started. Now we've all got branch plants away from here. I don't know whether any of the other manufacturers have told you that or not, but that's literally the truth. More work gloves, and oh, the whole industry knows "the Catawba boys," they call them.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Is that right?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes. They know us.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What about the changing technology? Has it been pretty much the same machines from the beginning that you're using now, or what kind of changes …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
The machine is the same sewing machines, except they're made stouter and run faster. The glove is made today just like the first one was made years ago in the West whenever there was snow on the ground. They made them in the West in their families. The men would cut them out with scissors, and the women would sew them up. The same today. We've made progress in how to cut them and how to do a lot of the other things to them, but that sewing is the same old way. The machine's got to be guided every move it makes, just like the first glove was made. I had an uncle that spent a lot of time in the West, in Illinois, and he said they cut them out with scissors in the wintertime when there was snow on the ground, and the women would sew them up. They used them in working in the fields in the summertime, and the wintertime, too. They husked corn

Page 25
with them. They made two-thumb gloves, too. And they husked corn with them. Until it got into the factories then. Some of the first gloves made in this country were cut and sent here and sewed together by different women in different.
JACQUELYN HALL:
In this county?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. Just like, you know, the old tobacco poke things. They were put together and made, and they'd send them in here, and women would run thread through them, you know? You've seen people with these thread tobacco [unknown], people that roll their own?
JACQUELYN HALL:
Yes.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
These folks in here made them. And that's what got the idea here.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Are you saying that there were factories here that rolled tobacco?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
There was ladies here that sewed gloves.
JACQUELYN HALL:
They'd sew gloves in their homes.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. Sewed gloves in their homes and then sent them back to wherever they got them from. Now I'm not as well versed in that as some of the Hermans over here, but that's where they got the idea to make gloves first. They were among the first to make gloves here, and then, of course, Warlong came along. And when Newton Glove came along, they …
JACQUELYN HALL:
So women were sewing gloves in their homes.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you know who they were selling the gloves to?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They sent them back to the people that sent them the cut goods.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you know who sent them the cut goods?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They might could come from Wells, Vermont, or some of those bigger factories in the Midwest. I just don't know.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And they'd send cut goods all the way down here.

Page 26
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, sure.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Are the Hermans a family that's been in the business a long time?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. I don't know if any of them are living any more or not. I don't know of any of them. They're all dead. But they run a glove factory over here on the railroad, right pretty close to Carolina Glove. Have you called on Carolina Glove yet? They could tell you a lot, too.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Not yet.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
One of them worked for them a long time. I don't know whether he lost his arm in the glove industry or not, but he was sales manager for them for a good while. But he's dead now. But they was still made in this county that way before they started making them commercially here.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What about accidents? Is it dangerous, the cutting and
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, no. We've had some boys… Now this fellow that said he'd worked for us fourteen years got his hand mangled up in a press out here.
JACQUELYN HALL:
In a cutting press?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, he wasn't watching hisself and joking and going on. But that's the only bad injury we've had in the thirty-four years we've been in business.
JACQUELYN HALL:
It looked like you could easily get a needle in your finger on the sewing machine.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, they do run the needles into their finger, but we've got guards on there. It's pretty hard to get them through there. We have had people to run a needle in their finger, but that don't amount to nothing. It scares them to death. It would me, too, [unknown].
JACQUELYN HALL:
Back, not in the forties when you started this mill, but when you

Page 27
were just watching the industry in the earlier years in the thirties, was there any feeling about it not being right for women to work? It always has been mostly women that were sewing the gloves.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, no.
JACQUELYN HALL:
There wasn't any feeling among people that women shouldn't …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No. We've had people to say that a woman's place is in the home, but all the gloves that have been made in this country have been made by women. Oh, yes. Of course, they didn't have no labor laws back when I was a young boy, but I had a lot of girlfriends that I went to school with and all. They went to work at fourteen and fifteen years old. And some of them walked two and three miles to the factory, too. And they worked ten hours a day, some of them did, especially in the wintertime. No, there's never been no hard feelings.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did your wife quit teaching school after she got married?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No. Well, she had to.
JACQUELYN HALL:
They wouldn't let married women teach?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They wouldn't let married women teach. Then they come back on their knees begging her to teach. So she went back to teach the first year we started the glove factory. And she taught a total of thirty years, and she's retired now.
Well, she was out twelve years. We raised a set of twin girls. Right there is their picture when they was about eighteen years old.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Very pretty.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
One of them lives on one of the farms I bought. She built a new home [unknown]. They both work here. The other one's husband is on the faculty at Duke, and he's also wrestling coach. If you ever have a wrestling match with Duke University, he's a white-headed boy that's coach. I don't know whether you've ever been to a wrestling match

Page 28
or not …
JACQUELYN HALL:
I sure haven't, but I'll …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
That's where we see him. They live out from Durham off of Cole Mill Road, which is out north of Durham, in a development out there. They've been married a good while. They have a boy eighteen years old.
JACQUELYN HALL:
It looks like these sewers are sewing really fast. Are some people much faster than other people?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, some are just… You'll get elements in there just like everything else. Just like in classes, you've been with people that can learn right fast, and other people that have to work hard for it. We have people that drag and can't hardly make production; we have people that can make forty dollars a day.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What do you have to do to make production?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
What we call "production" is when you make enough to count for the minimum wage. The minimum wage is $3.10 an hour now, I think. When your tickets all add up that you make $3.10 an hour, you're making production.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And that's so much a dozen?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, he'd give you so much a pack, or six dozen. Then, of course, if you make more, then you get it, you see.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And how much do you pay per dozen?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, per pack, I don't know the rates. You see, I'm trying to retire. I'm getting away from all of it. I don't do no detail work at all. I come up here, and I read the magazines and the papers, and usually I go home by two or three o'clock in the evening. I don't know what the rates are. I don't even know what they're going to give them for a Christmas present. My son-in …
[END OF TAPE 1, SIDE B]

[TAPE 2, SIDE A]

[START OF TAPE 2, SIDE A]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, we'll close down here now. At this plant we'll close the twenty-first; that's next Friday, a week from today.
JACQUELYN HALL:
You stay closed for …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Then I imagine that my son-in-law will go up to the Banner Elk plant and close it on the twenty-first, too. Now Jack'll have four to close. He'll have the Mountain City plant and three in Virginia. So he'll probably close some of them on Thursday and the others on Friday. We work about 1,000 people in all of our plants.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you find that certain kinds of people make better workers than others? When you used to be in charge of hiring, how would you decide who to hire and who not to hire?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, you just more or less have to try out. You've got some things to go by. If you can get their grades, that's a good thing to go by, but that's hard [unknown]. You make mistakes in hiring people. No question about it. A lot of it's trial and error. But you can soon learn whether anybody is going to make anything or not, whether they take any pride in their work. It's like anything else. It's expensive to train people to make gloves. It's the most expensive industry to train that I know of, unless you're going to educate somebody to be an electrical engineer or something like that.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How much does it cost to train somebody?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, you just figure the minimum wage for from eight months to a year and a half.
JACQUELYN HALL:
During that time, can people …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
During that time, they're not making enough… What we call their makeup pay will be terrible, between what the minimum wage is and what

Page 30
their production is. We figure it costs right close to $4,000 to train an operator, on the average. Now I've got operators out here I wouldn't take $5,000 for.
JACQUELYN HALL:
People that have been with you a long time?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. Even if they've not been with me but two years, and they're good operators. Valuable, they're valuable. And they know it, too. Oh, I tell you, they can boss you if they want to. They know it. Oh, and step out here and go to the competitor, and just go to work the next morning. Oh, yes.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Is there a labor shortage?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So they're always looking for …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Here in Catawba County, I don't know what it is now, but it has been less than one percent already, unemployed. Whenever you get that low, why, you're not finding anybody unemployed that wants to work.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How do you keep your good hands from going off and working for somebody else?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, we try to be as good to them as we can.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What does it take to make people happy and satisfied …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, it takes a lot of things. We try to give bonuses. We pay the hospitalization on all of our workers. Then we've got a good rate for them on their dependents. And we give two weeks off, one at Christmas and one at the Fourth of July, with pay. And we try to pay rates that's going, or either above the neighborhood rates. And we try to have good working conditions. It's just so many things that you can't mention, that's all.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What about just good personal relationships with people? Do you think that makes a difference?

Page 31
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, I get out among the folks, and I joke and talk with them. I try to be not exactly down on the level with them. I try to keep myself a little above them, which naturally you have to. But if I've got any enemies out there in that plant, I don't know it. I know one thing: when I'm a-travelling around, me and my wife, to these other plants, they're always concerned about me. They're concerned about me. We've got a plant that we just finished building in Springs, Virginia. I don't know whether I've got a picture of it here or not. I don't believe I ever got a picture at home of it. It's as big as this building here, 28,000 square feet. And me and my wife was over there summer, working with it. We had started over there about seven years ago in a gymnasium building and just outgrew it. It wasn't satisfactory for a glove operation, no way.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What kind of changes have you seen in the industry over the years you've been involved in it?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We have different ways to make a lot of the things that goes into the glove, but as far as the glove making itself, it's the same thing. And they're sold more or less the same way. Now we sell through jobbers, mostly. We have salesmen in different parts of the country. They may sell different lines. We don't have any that sell just gloves for us and nothing else, but they sell other lines. And most of our gloves eventually wind up in industry. We have some competitors that's close by that sell direct to industry and don't go through jobbers. In other words, the two main ways to sell gloves is through salesmen, and then another, of course, is to sell direct to industry. They'll hunt you up. The industry, they know about you, they'll hunt you up. But it's been our policy to have a good, strong sales force that sells to jobbers that looks after the industry. In other words, we don't sell to both; we just sell to jobbers. Unless it's

Page 32
in a territory where we do not have any sales representation; then we'll sell direct to industry.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Are the jobbers usually in the North?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They're all over the country, from Texas on through the West Coast, on around. We sell quite a few gloves in Florida. But you take, say, from the Mississippi delta on around west, then on around here. We don't sell many gloves in Virginia. There's not too much industry in Virginia. And we sell quite a few gloves in Florida, but no big amount. It's in the Southwest, Northwest, and the central North and across the East. A lot of gloves are sold in New York, Boston, and through there. New Jersey. A lot in Chicago. Chicago's a great market. We've got one customer that… I haven't looked at the latest figures, but we sell them probably over two million dollars' worth of gloves a year.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Just to one customer.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
He's a big jobber. He makes some gloves himself, leather gloves, [unknown].
JACQUELYN HALL:
What about changes in workers' attitudes or people's pride in their work, that kind of thing? Has there been much change?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It had deteriorated after a while, say seven or eight years ago, but people are beginning to come back now. I'll tell you, the family life, I notice. Say, twenty-eight years ago up until, say, about ten to seven years ago, discipline in the home was not as good as it is today. And I've known schoolteachers that say so, too. Parents are beginning to be more concerned about how they raise their children, and trying to compare them with the way they were raised. They just figure they weren't raised right, and let do any way in the world. There's a difference. And, of course, we never want our young people to smoke, but I don't think we have so many young

Page 33
people smoking, comparatively speaking, as we did ten years ago. We have a lot of young parents who don't smoke.
JACQUELYN HALL:
I notice you have mostly pretty young boys or young men that do the turning. Has that always been the case?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
That's always been the case. In other words, the glove industry is thought of as a young people's industry, really.
JACQUELYN HALL:
In comparison to …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, it's just something that's fast. When you get on the turning point of the glove, you've got to be fast, and the same way with sewing. Of course, these glove operators get to be old, and they say, "Well…" But they'd learned it years ago. An old person, on an average, can never learn to sew gloves and get up to fast speed.
JACQUELYN HALL:
There were quite a few older people out there sewing, though.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, they've been sewing gloves for years and years.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Have they slowed down?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Some of them have, but they stay up pretty good, because they've been at it so long.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So it's always been …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It's always been considered a young people's industry. But we have people that's in it young and grow on up with it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
There are not very many men working on the floor, it didn't seem like. What percentage …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, as a matter of fact, don't take too much male labor in a glove plant. It's mostly a female industry, sewers.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Have you had any men sewers?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, no.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Never had any. Is the hosiery industry very big in Catawba County?

Page 34
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, yes, it is big. This is a hosiery …
JACQUELYN HALL:
Is it as big as gloves?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, I'd say from Morganton to High Point is the hosiery industry of the world, too.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How would you compare this business with the hosiery business?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
The hosiery business is bigger.
JACQUELYN HALL:
But did you ever think of going… You wanted to go into gloves. You didn't think of going into hosiery.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I was office manager in a big hosiery finishing plant back over here. But I never did think I'd like it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Why not?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, it's just so damn detailed, and it's style from end to end. You take gloves, there's no style; it's the same thing year in and year out. Although you've got to make a lot of gloves to make money, but… Aw, you take socks, it's half a dozen of this kind, half a dozen of that kind, and then you've got sizes in there yet. It's detail; oh, it's detail. Then you've got all kinds of yarns that are going in to make up a sock, and you've got all kinds of socks, like cushion-soled socks and reinforced in the heels, and there are all kinds of yarn a-going in. And then, of course, you've got ladies' sizes and men's sizes, and, oh, there's no end to it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Changing fashions.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, changing styles.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you think people prefer working as hands in a glove factory over a hosiery mill? Is there a competition for pretty much the same workers?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, the competition has been between us, but whenever you get a glove maker to making gloves, even if they quit and go to the hosiery, they'll.

Page 35
JACQUELYN HALL:
They'll come back?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
And vice versa. If you've got people from… We've lost a lot of people to the upholstering trade. They go to that, and a lot of times they don't like it, and they'll come back. It's usually what they're trained in. Of course, that don't say that they'll like it every time, but usually they stick with it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Have you had any labor organizing problems in your plant?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We had one at the Banner Elk plant once that we whipped out[unknown].
JACQUELYN HALL:
[unknown]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They went up there among those ignorant people in the mountains and just made them believe they'd get everything in the world. And we had to combat it [unknown] It never did get to where they had elections.
JACQUELYN HALL:
didn't even get to that.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, it didn't get that far.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What union would it be that's organizing the glove industry? Would it be the Textile Workers' Union?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
This was the Textile Workers' Union of the AF of L-CIO.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How did you combat it?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I got a lawyer in Charlotte; he was an anti-union lawyer.
He come up here and worked with …
JACQUELYN HALL:
There are some pretty famous Charlotte lawyers like that.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I think his name was Kennerly or… We had him to come up here and help us for a couple weeks. It was expensive, but it was worth it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What can a lawyer do in a case like that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
He just had experience in how to persuade people and how to use psychology on them. Just like, you know, you study psychology in school,

Page 36
how to sway people's minds and tell them, "You know that this can't be." Well, they told them they could drink beer on the job, and then they'd get so many payrolls[unknown] free every year, and all that kind of stuff. All kinds of things, tell you anything.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So he just would go in and tell …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We run some of them off, too, for faulty work, that was working with it. Oh, we had to go to court. We was in court in Boone for a week, but we won the case and got rid of them. And then it never did get to elections. No, we never heard any more from them.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What would cause the court to intervene in a situation …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, I wouldn't say it was court, too; it was the National Labor Relations Board. They hold hearings just like court.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So somebody would complain to the National Labor Relations Board, and then you'd have to go in …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, that's right. They'd bring complaints against me, yes.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you think the people in the mountains are a different sort of people than the people in …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It all depends on the locality. I guess maybe it's not their fault, but a lot of people in the mountains have been pampered by the government. You know, you've heard of the Appalachia people.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Yes.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
You know, you can ruin people. Been given too much by the government, in some sections of the mountains. And a lot of it's up through West Virginia out here. From here [unknown]. And when you get a training program in there, why, you pay them to go to learn to train. They're not interested in learning anything many times. Many times they're not. You've heard the quotations how much train

Page 37
somebody to learn to do a job? The government being there'll help you[unknown].
JACQUELYN HALL:
What is the average length of time that your workers stay with the company?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, I don't know. We have some that's been with us ever since we've been in business, and then we've got some that …
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you have a problem with turnover?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. Oh, labor turnover's tremendous. Not especially in the glovemaking department, but it's in other, outlying parts around. Turning forms[unknown]. All that stuff just …
JACQUELYN HALL:
You have more problem with labor turnover …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, we have more problem with labor turnover in any of the operations other than sewing.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Huh. Why is that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I don't know, it's just… Mostly we have to depend on young people, and they're just restless and just want to go somewhere else. Especially here. Now it's not that way in some of our other plants. But here, because you can step out the next morning and get a job anywhere you want to.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did your brother and you and your sister-in-law all …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We started as a partnership, and we was in a partnership until 1950. We moved down here and built this building in the first part of 1950, and we incorporated then. Then about fifteen, sixteen years ago, I bought his end of it. He wanted to go back to the farm.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, yes, he's farming.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. He's a gentleman farmer. He's got all the money, and I've got the headaches.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Why did he want to go back to the farm?

Page 38
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, he is just a natural-born cattle raiser and farmer. And, of course, I was a cattle breeder for forty years. Hereford cattle. And he's still got a lot of cattle. I've sold mine off.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did he go back to the farm that you had grown up on, or does he have a different farm?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, he lives at the old place.
JACQUELYN HALL:
He lives at the old place?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, the old place, the road split it middle in two, just about. He got the north side of it, and I got the south side.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Is his wife still alive?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No. Unfortunately, we lost her about five or six years, I reckon, before I bought his interest in it. He remarried. She was my right arm in the glove industry. [Voice breaks] She did all the hiring[unknown]. Of course, we were smaller then. She did all the payroll work except calculating and extending it, you know. And I did that and wrote the checks and all. But she looked after the sewing and all that. And he fixed machines. Of course, then he was single for a long time. I'll never forgive him for living by hisself so damn long. I just couldn't have never done that. And then he married an old classmate of his and his first wife's, too. She's a wonderful woman. She goes to the field with him and helps bale hay and thresh wheat and all that stuff. Of course, he don't do too much of that anymore, but he does have cattle. He goes to all the cattle sales. He don't have to be in no hurry. He's not got no engagements to meet nor nothing like that, you see.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you encourage him to remarry?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I guess I sure did by actions. I didn't say to him, "What the hell's wrong with you?" [Laughter] No, I didn't. She didn't live

Page 39
long, though. They left the old place, and they had moved up here on the upper end of the farm just about a half a mile as the crow flies this way, and built them just a nice brick home in a bluff there and shaded all around it and all. And I declare, she never lived long. And she was buried on Sunday, and I declare, the grass all around the pastures and everything was just so beautiful. It was in October, and he lived by himself over there for a long, long time. A long time, six or seven years.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Are there other things that have been important to you in your life that we haven't touched on that you'd like to add?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, I've had some trades that I didn't go through with that I wished I would have. Of course, everybody gets that to happen, but I've had a wonderful life. My wife's been a wonderful person. She handles her own money and buys her own clothes, and I reckon I ought to be ashamed I've never bought her any clothes. She always got her bank account, and I've got mine. We live together in the same house, and you'll never see no "Mr. and Mrs. A. C. Little" on the check.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Has it been that way since you first got married?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. She's had her money to herself, and I don't know within fifteen thousand dollars what she's got.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Huh.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
[Laughter]
JACQUELYN HALL:
When you first got married, did she say, "I want to do it this way," or how did you …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, no, I guess that's the way it turned out. Of course, she would have said that we wasn't going to have it no other way. She's an individualistic person. Hell, that just tickles me. I don't have to worry about… I have plenty of my own to worry about, without hers.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Right. [Laughter] Have you wished that you'd gone on as a CPA?

Page 40
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, when I graduated, there was only one CPA in accounting, and he didn't have nothing to do. You take through the thirties and into the forties, business never got anywhere. So I just never did take it up after that. Of course, I kept books for years and filled out a few income tax statements. But you take all the laws except the basic laws that was put on the books in 1931. have been put on the books since I graduated. So I'm just as dull on the laws. All I can use is bookkeeping sense, and I know what will pass and what won't, in most cases. But I kept my own books. I set up the books that we've got here, and they've never been changed to this day except it's been expanded on till we got so big at the bank, we got to borrowing so much money, till they wouldn't take my statement any more. Said, "We've got to have it certified." I said, "Okay," so I've had a certified public accountant ever since. He saves us money.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What trades do you think you might like to have followed?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Do what?
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did you say that there were some trades that you wish you had followed or that you could have followed?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, there's no trade that I… I've had some folks that follow kind of in the footsteps of my great-grandfather and be mechanical, architectural. I had an uncle that was an architect, and I've had several fellows that's got big in the tin business. I had one cousin that lived in Lenoir, and he was on the city board up there for about thirty years. He run a tin shop up there, and, well, they did a lot of… They built these big ducts that takes shavings away from the machines in these furniture plants, collects it up and all. He built that duct system [unknown]. One turned out to be a contractor, Luther Moss at Moss, Morrow[unknown] Building Company in Hickory. He was my first cousin. He was the illegitimate boy, but… He never had a dime given to him in his life [unknown].

Page 41
And he had some half-brothers, and they done well, too. Sometimes it makes me ashamed of myself when I was brought up to have something, and they didn't, to what they've done. Of course, I've not done bad; I'm proud of what I've done. But, you know, they just didn't have no damn chance at all, raised over there on a little four-room house over next to the river, the other side of Brookford. They come out of there, and they was willing to work and done well. Of course, most of them are dead now. I was in Olympia on the Puget Sound in the State of Washington when I got word that Moss was dead. I was in a pay telephone and talking to Doris. I was telling you about, I said there was the angel of the place, the tallest girl, that's been with me thirty years. She's never worked for anybody except me.4 I've got a boy out in the plant that's production manager and inner plant coordinator. I don't know whether you've seen him or not. He's never worked for anybody except me. He has two girls in here that's never worked for anybody except me. One of them occupies the desk just over there.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Have you often had whole families that worked for you?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. We've been close together on families here. We've had three and four out of the same family working for us.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you try to hire that way when you can?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, if we think they… If you get into a family that's good workers, boy, that's the way you want to go. And if you get a man and his wife that likes to come to work together and all, that's good, too. Now a lot of factories don't have that policy; they don't want to work anybody… But now we're not that way. I think it's an advantage to us in our business.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Why do some people think it's a disadvantage?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, if you fire one, you have to fire the other one. Of

Page 42
course, we've had it happen, too, here. We've had somebody get mad, and then their wife was mad, and then the first thing you know, some of them don't want to come back, too.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What kind of things happen that you have to fire people for?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We had one man and his wife here working, and he got to rambling around and romancing about, and we had to get shut of him.
JACQUELYN HALL:
He was flirting with the other women?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We've had moral conditions to pop up in the plant that we had to separate and get straightened out.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Things that would happen right during work hours?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, but it'd probably lead to meeting each other out some place.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How would word about that get around? How would you find out about that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We wouldn't find out for a while, but we'd soon catch on. They'd both be gone at the same time. It's easy to catch on.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you have special problems with women workers that you don't have with men, or vice versa?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, yes and no. We have domestic problems, and hell, a lot of times they bring the domestic problems into the plant to the employer, and he's as innocent as anything can possibly be. Jealousy sometimes. "If you don't run so-and-so off, I'm going to leave," and we have those problems. Some; not much, but we have them, anyway. But we've not had anything lately to speak of.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Does that affect women more than men, domestic problems?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It comes from them, more or less. A man, you know, kind of looks over a lot of stuff.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What about problems of women with children, missing work …
[END OF TAPE 2, SIDE A]

[TAPE 2, SIDE B]

[START OF TAPE 2, SIDE B]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
And who loses out? The employer of the woman. With equal rights and all that stuff, I think the husband ought to do a little.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Exactly. [Laughter]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yet ninety-nine times out of a hundred, it falls on the woman. Although we do have some women here in the office that "I see that my husband takes them to the dentist and to some other things, and I take them to the doctor." That she's not out just for every little thing. But usually it falls in the hands of the woman, the mother, to look after, which I guess, maybe, is more or less right. But we have that problem.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you have some kind of policy about things like that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, we have to take every individual to itself. Hell, you set policy, why, the first thing you know, somebody's going to want to break it, and you may lose the best operator you've got, and you don't want to do that. You have to give and take in the glove business, because your operators are too precious.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So you just really deal on an individual basis.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
You've got to handle every case to itself.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When you were really running the business more than you are now, would operators come into your office and talk to you about these individual problems, or who would they ask?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, we've had women to come to talk to us about everything under the sun. [Laughter] Yes, we still get it today. Of course, it's not every day, but it happens over the years. Oh, yes, the women, especially, more so than men, there's so much gets built up in them, till they've got to tell it to somebody. And, of course, I sit down and

Page 44
listen and sympathize with them, and if you can help them, help them, I think. You know, life's not easy, and when you've got three or four children and you have to work every day… No, it's not easy. And my, how we helped. Why, oh, why we have treated the young generation so damned dirty and I don't know what. My generation—say, a few years before me up to this time—we have treated our young people dirty.
JACQUELYN HALL:
How do you mean?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
… Let me get all my damn notes down here. When Roosevelt took over this country, our national debt was was a mere sixteen billion dollars. We have spent money; our government has spent money and has gone in debt. The Social Security was drained almost before it got off the ground by giving it to people that had never put nothing in it. Lots of farmers drew on their Social Security for years, having never put in but maybe thirty-six dollars. That's twelve dollars a year for three years. Today it's in debt head over heels, and it's sucking itself now to stay alive. Who's a-paying it? The young people. Our national debt, in all, is at least one trillion dollars. Who's going to pay it? I'm not; I'm not going to live long enough. We have let building get so high that the young people, scarcely few of them can own a home. They have to go in debt for thirty years to pay, and look at the interest they pay. Now we've run the gasoline price up so high that they have to pay a tremendous price for gasoline. They have to pay a tremendous price for an automobile. Isn't that doing somebody dirty? No wonder some of our young people get off the straight and…[unknown] Never in the history of man has anybody been so damn dirty to their young people that are coming along as we have. I just defy anybody to tell me an age that's been any worse on the young people than we have.

Page 45
JACQUELYN HALL:
It is hard [unknown].
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Hell fire. Why, the animals don't treat each other… Our country and our leaders have made debt that it seems like they don't give a damn whether they ever pay it or not.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Have gasoline prices caused… Do the people that work here have to drive down a long way to work or …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, they all drive to work. Some drive further than others.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do they live way out in the country?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Most of our people are rural people. And a lot of our people own their homes, and are paying for them. But all of that makes much better workers, if you can get people that's trying to own something. Like I say, instead of leaving from work and going to some "ism" house somewhere and hang around. My son-in-law one time said, "What do you mean by ‘ism house’?" I said, "Well, that's a place where you collect up all kinds of damn isms about the employer and everybody else." Beer joint or something. If they'd go home and they work on their hogpen or they work in the garden, if they had a rough time at the mill, they just let it go on off, don't think any more about it. But if you get about five or six together at some beer joint, the first thing you know it would be multiplied into a big something. I visited my son-in-law in Binghamton, New York, once, and on his way home, why, they had a bar they stopped at usually, and I called it "Ism House." And he wanted to know, "What do you mean by ‘Ism House’?" He said, "Well, that's exactly what takes place there."
JACQUELYN HALL:
Is this county dry?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, we have whiskey stores. But you have brown-bagging; you don't have bars.
JACQUELYN HALL:
But there are bars that sell beer.

Page 46
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They have bars in Charlotte and a few other towns. Well, you'll fill up the library down at Carolina.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Yes, that's right. [Laughter] Do you belong to any organizations?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, Lord God, plenty. I belong to more things than have been. I've been a Moose, and I've been an Elk and a Kiwanian. I had twenty years' perfect attendance in Kiwanis. I've served in every office in Kiwanis, even president. I'm a life member in the American Hereford Association. I've been a member of the North Carolina Hereford Breeders' Association. I belong to the Cattlemen's Association. I was an organizer and the first president of the Catawba Valley Cattlemen's Association. I was one time vice president of the Agricultural Foundation. I'm president of my family, the Captain Daniel Little family.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Your family elects a president?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. It's incorporated: the Captain Daniel Little Family, Incorporated.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, really? What is that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
If anybody gets out doing any work for the family or something, and they happen to run into somebody and get hurt, we've got a little protection. It didn't cost anything; it's a non-profit organization, you see.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you have family reunions?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, we've had two, and we're going to have another one in August. The first one we had was three years ago. We had five hundred people there from about thirty states.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Five hundred people in your family?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, from about thirty states. And there was forty of us from this county chartered a bus and went to one branch of our little family reunion in Clovis, New Mexico, in August.

Page 47
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you ever have the reunion here?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
The national reunion is held here, usually, at the Muller Motel, but this was the Little-Odum[unknown] family, a switch of the big branch of the Little family. We all have it together on the even years, and they have theirs on the odd years, but we all to theirs, too.
JACQUELYN HALL:
More people that I've talked to in this area have these big family reunions.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, it's getting more so all the time.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Getting more so rather than less?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, people have been getting back there. People have got more time now. People are retired, and you've got time to get in and hunt up these things from what they did have. [Interruption]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They were a very religious family. Most all of my family away from here are Baptists. That is, now, from the other branches of the family. My fourth great-grandfather had four boys that raised families, and one girl. And two of them came up here—they're mostly Lutherans—but the others are mostly Baptists. Down in South Carolina and out in Tennessee and down here in Cabarrus County and Union County. Primitive Baptists, some of them, even. Fundamental Baptists; I don't know what the difference is. They have different Baptist churches.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What church did you go to?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I go to St. Paul Lutheran Church down here. It's the oldest church in western North Carolina, established about the year 1765. Of course, we have a new church now, but the old church is a log church. It's still standing there, but it's get weather boards on it. It was built about 1812, that one, but there was one built before it.

Page 48
JACQUELYN HALL:
Where is it located?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
If you go right up this road and turn left … [Interruption]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They put me over at Newton School before this community out here consolidated, and then after that they consolidated, and they went to Startown. And I don't know. Percy just didn't get along too good in school. He's smart; he could study, but he wanted to play marbles and play ball. [Laughter]
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did your parents ever think of sending you …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
But he's got a daughter that went through the University of Tennessee in three years and even changed schools in the meantime. She went to Guilford, I think, one year and then went from there straight, in the summertime, over to Knoxville, and she graduated over there. She's smart. She and her husband live in Hamilton, Ohio. He works in the jet plant there. He's an engineer, a graduate of the University of Tennessee. And they've got three boys. And I said, by God, that she'd try to make Einsteins out of them. Just like one of my daughters. She's got two boys, and hell, she's going to make Einsteins out of them, I believe. My daughters went to Appalachian. They graduated up there in 1959.
JACQUELYN HALL:
You just have twin girls?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes.
[Interruption]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
… plants here. Wonderful people. But it just all depends on who's looking.[unknown] Anybody that makes a good, honest living, I don't care what they're doing. If that's what their life job is, why, I respect it.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do some people feel differently than that?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Some, of course, probably would. But we here in the textile

Page 49
South, there's not too much of that, unless it was what you'd call the 400 class, the moneyed class, the capitalistic class might, but none too much of it, not here.
[Interruption]
JACQUELYN HALL:
… that the first one was sent here.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
It was before the First War, in maybe the 16's or 17's.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did George and Marie go to high school?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They went to high school at the old Catawba College, yes. What grade you would call it at that time I don't know, because it wasn't defined grades like it is today. It was a prep school to prepare you for college.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did all four of you go to Catawba College?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, I went to State College.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Well, Catawba College was really more of a high school, wasn't it?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No, it was a four-year school. Its last session here was in the early twenties. They missed two years in their moving to Salisbury. I just don't know what the dates are.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, okay, I had it mixed up. I was thinking that the Concordia College that was …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Oh, yes, Concordia College was a two-year school, and it ceased to exit in '35. The building burned in '35, and they never rebuilt.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So both of them went to Catawba College.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, both of them did, that is, in the prep school. Didn't have no high schools in those… There weren't no high school at Newton, even, in those days.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Where did you go to high school?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
I went to high school in Newton, but that was some twenty years

Page 50
later.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Did your parents ever think about sending you to the Christian Day School?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
No. My grandsons are at Concordia Christian Day School. But I don't know. There was a good many students going to Concordia Christian Day School when I went to school. I had some friends that left Newton and went up there to school, but they always had me to school down at Newton, free school.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Let me make sure that I have your different occupations down. You came back from college and farmed from 1931 until about …
ARTHUR LITTLE:
And kept books with various companies at Hickory till '44. I was out about a year organizing and getting this thing going.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So this was founded in 1945?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes.
JACQUELYN HALL:
You delivered milk when you were in high school. Did you consider … [Interruption]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
They're wonderful people. Well, my brother lives down the road just a little piece. If you would have noticed, if you went down the road and looked out at a nice brick home out in a little clump of trees, that's where he lives.
JACQUELYN HALL:
He lives right up that same road that they live on?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes. And the church is down that same road. We all went to school together when we were kids.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When I was asking you about whether some kinds of work are looked down on and you said maybe by the rich people, what class of people do you consider yourself part of?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Well, we might have had a half a dozen families in Newton [unknown].

Page 51
But I'd just rather not talk about that, because there's not enough of it to even discuss. I wouldn't say that the textile people were second-rate people, no. Glovemaking was considered on a little higher plane because it wasn't quite as dusty and as linty, but it was all work. It's all work.
JACQUELYN HALL:
What class do you think of yourself as belonging to?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We belong to the farming class. We're basically farmers.
JACQUELYN HALL:
So even though you run a glove mill, you still think of yourself as a farmer.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, sure, yes. I travelled across Europe for six weeks, and I told everybody I was a farmer.
JACQUELYN HALL:
[Laughter]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
My wife said, "He's no farmer."
JACQUELYN HALL:
[Laughter]
ARTHUR LITTLE:
We made a trip to Europe in '58. That was the days before they put jets on. There was jets, but they were not on the passenger lines.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Do you know when your wife was born?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Yes, she's two years older. She was born in 1906.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Where was she born?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Just the same place we was, about. Just across the branch.
JACQUELYN HALL:
Oh, right. They backed up onto you. And she finished high school and got some college.
ARTHUR LITTLE:
She finished high school at Startown.
JACQUELYN HALL:
And she went to some college at Lenoir-Rhyne?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
She went to Lenoir-Rhyne and Appalachian. She went to Appalachian in the summertime. She never did get to go to a full year at one time. It was always summer schools or Saturday schools or things of that kind.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When did you get married?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
June 3, 1933.

Page 52
JACQUELYN HALL:
And your children's names?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
Janice Virginia and Joyce Melinda.
JACQUELYN HALL:
When were they born?
ARTHUR LITTLE:
January 15, 1937.
END OF INTERVIEW
1. Alonzo C. Shuford, elected in 1895.
2. Reference is to the killing of Communist Workers Party members by the Ku Klux Klan in 1979.
3. See interview with Kathryn Killian and Blanche Bolick, H-0131.
4. Reference is to office secretary.