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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Geddes Elam Dodson, May 26, 1980. Interview H-0240. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Families in a mill village try to maintain a connection to the farm

Like many first-generation mill employees, Dodson's father had wanted to retain his connection to the agricultural life. Unlike many others, however, his position as a mill supervisor provided him with enough salary to make that desire possible. Here Dodson describes returning to the farm to harvest the crop produced there, and anecdotes related to this trip continue for several minutes.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Geddes Elam Dodson, May 26, 1980. Interview H-0240. 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

My daddy had had a stroke, and he wasn't able to fix any more looms. He had a stroke shaving one Sunday night, getting ready to go to work the next morning. He sold his house on Vance Street over there before he had this stroke and bought him a little farm up in Pickens County. Thirty-eight acres with three branches running through it, and the Saluda River was the line on it. It was an ideal little farm. He had the money to pay for it when he sold our house on Vance Street, but he just paid half of it down and took the other half and bought his plows and wagon and the big old mule. It was in World I, had a "U.S." stamped on one of his hips on the back. And that bugger could pull a load, and I don't mean maybe. And my daddy rented that farm out in Pickens and let a fellow make a crop on it one year. And he decided he wanted to come back to the mill before he'd gathered the crop. And so my daddy let him come back, and he took me out of the mill, and he and I went up there and gathered the crop and stayed up there in that old log cabin.