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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Paul and Pauline Griffith, May 30, 1980. Interview H-0247. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

An explanation for lack of unionization in one working community

Pauline Griffith explains that although she and her husband never joined a union, one of her brothers did and experienced trouble finding a job as a result. According to Pauline, efforts at unionization in the Judson Mill fell short. Throughout the interview, she and her husband generally describe their working conditions in favorable terms, and here she reiterates that so long as working conditions are amenable, she believes unionization and organized labor activity were better left alone.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Paul and Pauline Griffith, May 30, 1980. Interview H-0247. 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

PAULINE GRIFFITH:
No, it's been pretty peaceful out here. The people have been pretty peaceful. Unions all right if it's done right. But now, if they have some hotheads in there that causes trouble, that's where the trouble is. But we never did join the union, neither of us.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you know of anybody that ever did?
PAULINE GRIFFITH:
My youngest brother did. There was some hothead that caused a strike at this mill, and so he didn't cause trouble, but he just went out rather than to have trouble with them, and he thought he was really in dutch with the boss because he even went out. He tried to get work everywhere, but he couldn't. So, he was down here among us and we all helped him out. And he went back up there where he had worked, and they had his job waiting on him, because he hadn't given any trouble and was a good worker. And so, it's bad if there's some hotheads among anything. But I don't know that he belongs to it now. He suffered from it, and we all participated in it to help him. If working conditions are nice, and you can live, I think it's best not to get too involved.