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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Flake and Nellie Meyers, August 11, 1979. Interview H-0133. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Familial tradition of furniture-making

Flake Meyers explains the tradition of furniture-making in his family. Describing how his grandfather, from Germany, was a clock-maker, and how his father made furniture which he sold in a furniture shop that supplemented the family's agricultural income, Flake suggests that his own career in the furniture industry was part of a longer familial tradition.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Flake and Nellie Meyers, August 11, 1979. Interview H-0133. 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

PATTY DILLEY:
Were your parents farmers?
FLAKE ORAN MEYERS:
Yes, they was farmers. And he made furniture; there's where I got into it. He had a little furniture shop out in the country. He made all kinds of furniture, chairs and what they called kitchen safes back then. Those cupboards; there was tin up the doors with those little holes punched in.
PATTY DILLEY:
Pie safes.
FLAKE ORAN MEYERS:
Called kitchen cupboards. He made lots of them, and then he made a few coffins. They didn't call them caskets back then; coffins, you know, back in them days.
PATTY DILLEY:
Where did he learn how to do that?
FLAKE ORAN MEYERS:
That's the reason I learned how to make furniture; my father trained me up. We'd go in the woods and cut our timber and haul it in and dry it and make it into furniture. That was when I was at High Point.
PATTY DILLEY:
How did he learn how to do that?
FLAKE ORAN MEYERS:
From his father. His father made old wooden clocks. They was interesting.
PATTY DILLEY:
This was a family skill handed down?
FLAKE ORAN MEYERS:
Yes, that's right.
PATTY DILLEY:
I hadn't talked to anybody before that was like that.
FLAKE ORAN MEYERS:
My grandfather was a clockmaker.
PATTY DILLEY:
Was he from Germany, perhaps?
FLAKE ORAN MEYERS:
Yes, his folks were German, but he was born and raised here in the United States. His father was from Germany, and his grandmothers were Dutch.