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Title: Oral History Interview with Evelyn Gosnell Harvell, May 27, 1980. Interview H-0250. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Electronic Edition.
Author: Harvell, Evelyn Gosnell, interviewee
Interview conducted by Tullos, Allen
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: 128 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.
2007-05-15, Jennifer Joyner finished TEI-conformant encoding and final proofing.
Source(s):
Title of recording: Oral History Interview with Evelyn Gosnell Harvell, May 27, 1980. Interview H-0250. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series H. Piedmont Industrialization. Southern Oral History Program Collection (H-0250)
Author: Allen Tullos
Title of transcript: Oral History Interview with Evelyn Gosnell Harvell, May 27, 1980. Interview H-0250. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series H. Piedmont Industrialization. Southern Oral History Program Collection (H-0250)
Author: Evelyn Gosnell Harvell
Description: 97.7 Mb
Description: 26 p.
Note: Interview conducted on May 27, 1980, by Allen Tullos; recorded in Greenville, South 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.
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Interview with Evelyn Gosnell Harvell, May 27, 1980.
Interview H-0250. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Harvell, Evelyn Gosnell, interviewee


Interview Participants

    EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL, interviewee
    ALLEN TULLOS, interviewer

[TAPE 1, SIDE A]


Page 1
[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
… lived on a farm in Tygerville, and all the families would go there on weekends. We'd have big dinners and enjoy one another, the cousins and all get together. I remember my grandmother had a long table on the front porch. They would cook food; any kind of food you wanted, we would have.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That's your Grandmother Gosnell?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Grandmother Case. And we enjoyed it, had a good time, and we'd leave on Sunday and come back home.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That was up in North Carolina.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, this was after they moved to South Carolina. My mother moved to South Carolina when she was twelve years old with her family. They had wagons back in those days, and she would tell us about moving. They had three wagons. She said they had covered wagons. I don't remember that. She said they had two or three cows, and it taken them two weeks to come from North Carolina to South Carolina.
ALLEN TULLOS:
So they moved to a new farm.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they bought a farm in Tygerville, North Greenville up here.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And you say all the families would go out there.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, when they grew up. We'd all meet there on Saturday.
ALLEN TULLOS:
All of the children.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
All of Grandmother Case's, yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did they kind of retire or stay on the farm?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
My granddaddy died on the farm, and my grandmother then came to Greenville to live with the baby daughter until she died. And then the farm was sold.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about your own memories when you were a little girl? Where were you living when you first remember?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I was living at Dunean out on Blake Street. I remember going

Page 2
to kindergarten, and we had a playground down here, and I remember playing and enjoying myself. We played hopscotch, jackstraws, and things like that back then.
ALLEN TULLOS:
So you went to kindergarten here.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they had a nursery and a kindergarten at Dunean here. We had a gym, and we had all kind of recreation when I was a child.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Who ran that kindergarten, or who kept it up?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
The company, I think, kept it up. They furnished the kindergarten for the employees. We had a YMCA when I grew up, and I went to the Y and played games.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did both of your parents work at Dunean?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, when I was little they did. We had a farm above Travellers Rest.
ALLEN TULLOS:
In the mill, what did they do?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
My mother and daddy were weavers.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you know how they learned to do that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No. This place was owned by Haynesworth, and it was new, and they moved here to help them out.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did they know how to weave when they first moved here?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I don't think so. I don't remember hearing them talk about it. But they enjoyed it. And then they bought this farm, and we'd go to the farm in the summer a lot of times and stay a week or two and then go on weekends.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would you all raise crops up there?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No. We had somebody to …
ALLEN TULLOS:
Rented it.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
But you did have a house on it that you could stay at.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That was pretty unusual, wasn't it, to have a place like that?

Page 3
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Can you account for the fact that your family had this farm?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
My daddy's daddy owned it, and then when he passed on my daddy got it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That's the Gosnells.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. And we enjoyed that very much.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Was your father the oldest child, to get the farm?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
He was the oldest child. I think it belonged to all, and then he bought their shares.
ALLEN TULLOS:
But you don't know how it was that he learned to weave.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, I don't know that much about it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Your grandfather and grandmother on the Gosnell side had moved in to work in the mills earlier?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. When they married, they wanted to work. These places were new then, and they learned to work. My mother just loved to weave.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did your grandparents sell their Spartanburg County farm when they came in to …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I really don't know. My grandfather died before my mother married. I never seen a picture of him, and I never did know him. But I have lived on the village all my life, I guess.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you remember starting school?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, I remember starting school. I was just about six. And then I had some kind of infection—got my leg hurt some way or another—and I didn't get to go to school for three years, I think it was. I couldn't walk.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What did you do during those years?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I'd just sit in chairs, and then they would help me to get around. Back then they didn't have what they've got now for crippled people.

Page 4
They put me in one of these little push-baby things, and my cousins would push me around the block. The doctor said I would never walk, but he missed it by a long shot. But I've made it good.
ALLEN TULLOS:
This would have been when you were how old?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I was about six or seven, and it was about three years I didn't walk.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You had, you say, cousins who lived in …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
They lived close [unknown], yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That would be on your mother's side.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
There were a number of Gosnells working in the Dunean Mill?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
One of my mother's sisters married a Holcomb, and one of them married… Her brothers lived here, and they were the Cases. Cousins back then loved one another, but they're not close now.
ALLEN TULLOS:
So you all had lots of kinfolks.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, we had a lot of kinfolk. And they would help me, and finally I could walk. Been walking ever since.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Where did you come in among these four brothers and two sisters?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I'm the middle child.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Could you name them off in order of birth?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Ernest is seventy-seven; David is seventy-five; Hardy is seventy-two, I believe; I am seventy.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Who comes next?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Nellie is sixty-eight. Then I've got a brother James that lives in Orlando, Florida; he is sixty-four. And I've got another sister Dot, fifty-seven.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You say your mother worked as a weaver for a while and then stopped.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. She didn't work all the time. She just worked part-time.

Page 5
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would she be working when Ernest or David was born, some of these older brothers?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, she wouldn't work then.
ALLEN TULLOS:
She would have stopped before then?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
I know sometimes women used to work in the mill up until …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I don't know about that. I just don't remember too much about that, but she did not work all the time. But she loved to work. And then when they were born she would go back to work and work a while. She didn't work all the time; she'd just quit and work when she wanted to.
ALLEN TULLOS:
They would hire her back, and she could come and go.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
I guess you would have been about eight or nine years old when the flu epidemic came along in 1919.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I remember that. I don't remember how old I was, but I remember when so many people died. I was just a child.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind of a feeling or memory do you have, looking back on that now?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Well, it never did bother me.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Does it frighten you to think back about that time?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
It would now, but then it didn't. Didn't any of us get sick, and we didn't have any trouble. Didn't any of them bother with it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you know anyone who died during that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, I didn't. I don't remember anybody.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Lots of people had it around here, I know. That's one of the things that people will always remember, is that flu epidemic.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. I remember that, remember so many people dying, but I

Page 6
don't remember any of them close to us dying.
ALLEN TULLOS:
In all these children, was there any one of your brothers and sisters that was a favored child?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
We always felt like the oldest one was favored more. I think everybody has a pick. We always felt like my oldest brother had the favors, but we really don't know that. I think she loved us all the same.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Is there any reason, anything you could think back on that would make you say that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
It seemed like he got everything he wanted quicker than the rest of us. [laughter] We thought that [unknown]. I don't guess it's true. I guess it's just a think. It seemed like she loved him better. Not my daddy; he was no favorite to him.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you have any thoughts about what you wanted to do when you were a child?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes, you have a lot of thoughts. You want to be a lot of things.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Can you remember …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I don't remember too much. I always liked to be a housewife. I always wanted to be. I love to cook. I always liked to cook, and I liked to cook good things and different things.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you all have a garden?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Who looked after that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
My mother always had a garden. Now me and my husband never have had a garden.
ALLEN TULLOS:
It was your mother's responsibility to kind of look after …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
And my daddy. He was a good gardener, and my mother, too. And

Page 7
they had a cow, and they had hogs and things. But she always seen after the garden. She loved to garden.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you help in the garden?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, I don't like garden work.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about when you were putting up food? Did you help do that at all?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, I would help her can some, peel apples or something like that, but I'm not too much for a garden at all.
ALLEN TULLOS:
But you like to cook.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I love to cook.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You just didn't like to garden or put it up or can it.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I like to can pretty well now, but when I was a child I didn't care anything about it. I wanted to play.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would some of the children be drafted into helping with the garden or with the canning?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
She would tell us what to do and we did it, but she didn't work us to death at all.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did she ever have anyone to come in to cook or keep house?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, we had a colored woman to cook.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Was there one or two particular ones that stayed with you a long time?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes, we kept one a good while.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What was her name?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I don't remember now. I think her name was Zena[unknown], it seemed like.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And she was from here in Greenville?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.

Page 8
ALLEN TULLOS:
Whereabouts did she live?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I believe she lived back over close to town somewhere. I think she lived in the city limit.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did she have a family of her own?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
She had a family of her own.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Husband and children?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, her husband was dead.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would she come in the daytime and go home at night?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What would she do?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, she did housework.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would she wash the clothes?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would she cook?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, she was a good cook.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would your mother be working some in the mill during this period?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, she would be working. But they didn't have washing machines back then; they had to rub them out with their hands.
ALLEN TULLOS:
In a big washpot?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
A big washpot and a rub-board.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about your brothers Ernest and David and these older brothers? Did they go to kindergarten and go to school?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they all went to school.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How long did they get to go?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I really don't know.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did any of them go any further than you did?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes. I have one brother that teaches school in Florida now.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Which one is that?

Page 9
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
James.
ALLEN TULLOS:
He must have graduated from high school and college?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did any of the others?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, Dot graduated from high school.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Where did she go?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I think she went to Parker.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That was a pretty well known high school.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, back then that was new. They were building that when I was just a teenager. I remember that.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Where did you go to elementary school and up to the eighth grade?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I went to the Mills Mill School. That was before Dunean built a school, and they paid Mills Mill so much money to let the children go over there.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did your older brothers all go to work at first in the mill a while?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they did a while, and then the oldest one went into store business. His own business. Well, the two oldest ones did. Then Hardy, the one just older than me, stayed in; he retired in the mill. Monaghan. He was an overseer over there a long time at Monaghan.
ALLEN TULLOS:
In which department?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Weave room.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about the other two brothers, Ernest and David?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
They went in the store business.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you know how they worked their way up?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
They started in the mill.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind of of a store did they …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
The oldest one ran a grocery store up on Highway 25 for years, and David run a cafe. And Nellie went into her own restaurant business.

Page 10
ALLEN TULLOS:
That was pretty unusual, for a woman to start up a restaurant business.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
It's just her and her husband. She had no children. And they had a filling station and a restaurant. And she sold it about five years ago.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You told me about James. He went on to college?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Where did he go?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
The University of Tennessee.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And he's teaching school.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
He's teaching at Evans High School in Orlando, Florida.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And then your sister Dot.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
She was sick all her life, and she worked in a store. She worked at Big Star[unknown]. She was a manager of a store for a while, and then they went out of business. And then she clerks in a store.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You stayed on in school through the eighth grade.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you want to go on some more?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, I didn't. [laughter] I wanted to go to work. I think when you were back then at that age, you wanted to… I wish I had went on, though. So I went to work, and I went down here and learned to weave, and I just loved it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How did you get your first job?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
My mother worked, and I went in there and stayed with her. You'd go in when you wanted to and come out when you wanted to, and after school I'd go in and learn. She taught me.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Was it hard for you to learn that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No.

Page 11
ALLEN TULLOS:
Was she a pretty good teacher?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, she was a good weaver. Real good.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What does it take to be a good weaver?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Be interested in your job.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you have to have any kind of special skills or abilities with your hands or eyes, or move fast?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes. You weave with your eyes and your hands and your feet and [laughter] your whole body, yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What are some things that weavers can do to keep themselves out of getting in trouble with their looms and their cloth coming through? Can you kind of keep an eye ahead on them?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes, you can work ahead of your job.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Could you talk a little bit about how you do that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Keep your mind on your work. Know your job; know your looms.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How many looms was your mother running?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I think she had eight.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind were those?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I don't remember just what it was.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Were those the box looms?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, she was on plain Drapers.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did it have an automatic bobbin-changing machine?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And someone would come by and fill up the …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Fill up the batteries. Had batteries, and it would put the filling in the shuttle. Of course, that went out of date. They put in magazines. [Interruption]

Page 12
ALLEN TULLOS:
That was the kind of looms that you learned first to operate, [unknown].
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How long did it take you before they gave you looms of your own, after you had started?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
About a month or two, probably.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How many would they give you to run?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Some were four, and some were eight. It depends on the styles that you have.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What were you all making when you started?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I wasn't making very much. I think it was just maybe eight or nine dollars or ten.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind of cloth?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
We was making just plain cloth.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you know what it would be used for?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
It would be used for sheets and pillowcases, I think, back then. Unbleached cloth, they'd call it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you have other members of your family besides your mother working there at the same time that you were?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. I had a brother that worked. Then Nell went to work when she got… I didn't go to work till I was about sixteen.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That would have been about '26?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
There were lots of different mills in Greenville at that time. Did people say that working at one was more preferable than working at another one?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Lots of people would go from one to the other, but I don't

Page 13
know that much about the others.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about the women who were weavers? Was there any difference in the kind of jobs they would be running and the kind that the men weavers would be working back then? Say, the difference between the kind of weaving your mother might be doing and that your father would be?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, they could weave the same materials. But a lot of men fixed looms, and women didn't do that.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did they have someone coming along, when your mother was working, that doffed the cloth off her loom?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
She didn't have to do that herself.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Tell me a little bit about what your day would be like. Say, back in the 1920's, what time would you get up? Would they blow a whistle to start the day?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they'd blow a whistle to wake you at five o'clock or five-thirty. That was the wake-up whistle, and then they would blow another whistle at… It seemed like we went to work at seven o'clock. And we'd get an hour for dinner. We'd go home for dinner, and then go back and work till six. I think that's the way we worked.
ALLEN TULLOS:
So there was one shift.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
One was all they were running at that time.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You would come home for dinner, and you would have dinner with your family?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, the dinner would be on the table. We'd all have dinner together. We just had an hour. Of course, we didn't live far. We had

Page 14
plenty of time; [unknown].
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about the pace of work back then? I know that that may have changed some over the years, but what was it like back in the twenties, about how fast you had to work, or how many looms you had to run?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
You didn't have many. They didn't run many looms back then. And then when time went on, they… Of course, different styles, you'd run different. Some styles run better than others; you could run more.
ALLEN TULLOS:
So it began to kind of pick up speed later on.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they began to speed them up and get new looms. Then after I married I didn't work too much for a long time, and then I went back to work. Then I run one set of looms thirty-two years. I felt like I owned it. [laughter]
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind of looms were those?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
They was that Crompton-Knowles. It was a big loom, and you didn't run cotton. It was all rayon here at Dunean. I don't know about cotton.
ALLEN TULLOS:
So this would be after World War II.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
When you went back?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I was working here when the War was going on. I changed shifts, and then I went on this set of looms. They were satin.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Real satin.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, real satin. And we run that parachute cloth. It's real thin nylon. And I run that. And I've run casket linings. Beautiful material. And I retired then when I was sixty-five, and I regretted that. I could go back and work again.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You liked it.

Page 15
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, I loved it. I just loved it. You got paid by production, and I loved to go up and down the alleys looking at those clocks turn, know you're making money. And I enjoyed it very much.
ALLEN TULLOS:
When you first went in to work, were you paid by production?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Not back then.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How would they pay you?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Paid by the cut. The cloth that you took off had so many yards in it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Were there so many yards to a cut?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
To a cut.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Was that a standard number of yards?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How many?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I don't remember that much about it. They had cut marks they had on it. From cut mark to cut mark was so many yards. And they'd pay you by that. By the weekend, you'd know how many cuts that you had taken off, and then you got paid by them.
[END OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]

[TAPE 1, SIDE B]

[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE B]
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I didn't. I worked till I was sixty-five. And then I started three or four times to go back. I could go back. They told me when I left, any time I wanted to come back. I could go back now and work, if I wanted to. They're real nice.
ALLEN TULLOS:
When did they change over from paying you by the cut to putting the pick-clocks on and paying by the pick?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, I don't remember when what was. My husband knows more about

Page 16
that than I do.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you remember what some people talked about as the "stretchout"?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I remember them talking about the stretchout, but I really never did know too much about it. If they changed styles and put a style on with good material and all, you could run more of it, they give you one or two more looms, but I don't know as that was the stretchout.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What was it like at the mill during the Depression years?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I didn't work during the Depression. My husband worked. We got married in '29, and the Depression was right after that.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you stop working as soon as you got married?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, I worked a while after I got married, and then I had my oldest child. She was born in 1930. And then I didn't work any more for a good while, till after the second one, I believe, was born. But there wasn't any work during the Depression. It closed down.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Dunean closed down.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
For one month. And then they just worked a little bit. But that didn't bother us. We went to the farm, my daddy's place.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you raise some food out there, or just move out there?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
We just went there and stayed while the …
ALLEN TULLOS:
While it was closed.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Closed, and all of us together. We just had a big time. As far as the Depression, it didn't bother us like it did some people. Some people didn't have much, but we had plenty.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Were there some people who would come to work back then in the mill who would try it for a while and decide they didn't want to work in the mill for one reason or another, and leave? Were there a lot of those people, for instance, people that tried to learn how to weave and either they didn't like it or they couldn't do it well, and they left after a little while?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I think it's both. Some of them couldn't do it, and some of them

Page 17
couldn't learn, and some of them didn't want to learn, and some of them were too lazy to work. That's what I think.
ALLEN TULLOS:
When you were growing up, did your parents ever tell you, trying to bring you up, about work or about the importance of work?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes, they would teach us that you're supposed to work. Well, they didn't teach the girls too much about that [laughter] , but they did the boys, thought they supposed to work. But my daddy was always interested in real estate, and he talked more about that. He didn't work all the time in the mill.
ALLEN TULLOS:
In other words, there would be a little different thing that they would have told the boys from the daughters.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What did they say to the daughters?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
They wanted us to choose our own life. In the meantime, they didn't push us to work in the mill. We didn't have to if we didn't want to, but I wanted to.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You had lots of your friends who went to work about the same time you did.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. I liked it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about religion in the family? Would your parents put an importance upon going to a particular church?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
To church, yes. We could choose the church we wanted. It was always Baptist.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did your mother and father go with you?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they went. When we were little, I remember my daddy carrying us to church in his arms.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Would you all go every Sunday?

Page 18
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Every Sunday, yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Were he or your mother ever officers in the Sunday school, or deacons, or lead singing, or anything like that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No. They liked to sing, but I don't know as they ever had a part in it like that.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Tell me a little bit about how you met your husband, how long you all courted before you got married.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
We dated three years. I met him at a basketball game.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Was he in the crowd?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
He was in the crowd. They were playing a tournament at Greenville Textile Hall, when it was uptown. He came down here after that and worked.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind of things would you all do for entertainment back then?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Parties and basketball games and baseball games and oh, just everything.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you go to the movies?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, movies. Carnivals and things like that.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What would have been, up to about the time you got married, the longest trip you might have taken somewhere?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I guess it would be to North Carolina.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Up to one of the farms?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, Asheville. I had some people lived in Asheville. I may have went somewhere else; I don't remember it if I did. I think that was about the farthest, but I have been everywhere now.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did your mother and father have an automobile?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they had a T-model.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you remember when they bought that?

Page 19
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I imagine that was about 1923 or '24, because it was a long time before I married. They hadn't been out too long back then when they bought it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Tell me a little bit more about your husband and what he did. You stopped working in the mill during those Depression years. Did he keep on working at Dunean?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, he quit and moved. He played base ball, and Mr. Jim Bailey, the manager of Slater, wanted him to come up there and play, and we moved up there. We didn't stay too long. Then we moved back to Dunean.
ALLEN TULLOS:
He was a pretty good ballplayer then.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Back then, yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And that was sort of [unknown] like a semi-pro league or a minor league? The different mills would have …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Baseball games together. And we enjoyed that very much back then.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And he was offered a job up there because he was a good ballplayer?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Ballplayer.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What position did he play?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Center field.
ALLEN TULLOS:
He must have been a pretty good batter.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I think so. I don't know. I don't remember [unknown]. We used to have some pictures, but I don't know where they're at now.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did he ever want to go on into the big leagues or think about taking up base ball like that?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I really don't know. I guess he did, because his brother did go on to another league.
ALLEN TULLOS:
I've heard of this Joe Jackson, who used to play here in Greenville.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they remember him real well.

Page 20
ALLEN TULLOS:
Then you knew him. Was he a little bit before them?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
He was a little bit before them.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What were some of the teams that your husband played on?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
He played with Dunean, and he played with the Judson Redcoats, they called them back then, and played with Slater. Three teams that he played with. Then we did go up to Lowell, North Carolina, and he played up there one year.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What was he doing in the mill at that time?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I believe he was a weaver back then, but he did work on up.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Could you talk just a little bit about first what he did and how he worked up? You mentioned some about he was a weaver, and then …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
He was a weaver, and then he learned to fix looms during the War.
ALLEN TULLOS:
World War II.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. Our children were little. He learned to fix looms, and then he went on to supervisor.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Where was he the supervisor?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Dunean.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That was in a particular, like in the weave …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Weave room. He stayed with that until he retired.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you all ever say anything to your children about whether you wanted them to work in the mill, or any particular kind of work you wanted them to do or not to do?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
We wanted them to go to school and get a good education and do whatever they wanted to do. I had one daughter who didn't want to work at all; she wanted to be a housewife. And that's what she is. She married a dentist, and she's never worked. And the other one wanted to work. She went on to school. One went to Winthrop. The other took a business course and was

Page 21
a real good secretary, and her husband wouldn't let her work. And she wanted to work. She loved secretary work. And he worked at the post office, and he didn't want her to work. So she's never worked neither. And we wanted the son to go to school above all, finish college, and he went one year in college. He didn't like it. And he begged us to let him come home. If we'd just let him come home, that he would go back that fall. Well, we let him come home, and he got him a job down here, and he never did go back. He wouldn't go back.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Where did he get a job?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
At Dunean in the cloth room, and he worked himself up, and he's got a real good job now. He's I guess you'd call it troubleshooter. Travels. If they get a complaint on cloth, he has to fly to that place and inspect that cloth and tell them what they'll do about it. But he;s on the road a lot, and he loves it. He just loves it. Above all we wanted him to finish college, but he didn't want it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Let me go back a little bit more in your childhood days and ask you something I sometimes ask but I forgot about. Could you describe a little bit about day-to-day life? Did your mother make the clothes for you, or did you buy clothes from a catalog, or did you go to the store and get your clothes?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
She would make some clothes, and she would go to town and buy some clothes. You didn't have too many clothes, nobody, so you didn't feel bad.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you and your sisters learn to make your own?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, we could sew. We learned to sew.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you make some of your own clothes?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Sometimes. Not too much.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you ever order anything from the different mail order catalogs?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I remember my mother and daddy used to order dishes from catalogs. Now where, I don't know. They'd come in barrels back then, packed with straw.

Page 22
I can just remember that.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you all have any kind of musical instruments in your family?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, we had a self-playing piano, and we had an old-timey organ. I remember my daddy used to pedal.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Your father could play the organ.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Well, I guess. I didn't know whether it was right or not. [laughter] And then we had pianos. We've always had pianos. And then we had a self-playing piano.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did your mother play?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
My mother played some, yes. When her sisters would come, they would sing and play.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind of songs would you all …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Out of church song books. "Old Time Religion" and "When the Roll is Called Up Yonder". I remember those songs I used to sing. And they enjoyed it back then.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you all have one of the old phonograph machines?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, we had one of those.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you remember any of the records that you might have bought, what kind of music it would have played?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, I don't remember the records that they'd buy. Seemed like I remember my daddy buying one of "Whispering Hope". You ever heard of that?
ALLEN TULLOS:
Yes.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
That's an old-timey song.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That's a gospel song.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. He bought that. That's about the only record I remember. If he hadn't liked it so well, I wouldn't remember that one.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did he sing himself?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, he loved to sing.

Page 23
ALLEN TULLOS:
What kind of things would he sing, religious songs?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Religious songs.
ALLEN TULLOS:
They used to have what they called the Sacred Heart Song Book.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, he had one of those autoharp things that's kind of built funny. It had a lot of strings on it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Hold it up and strum it?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. It had a lot of strings on it, and it was shaped funny. And they had guitars, and they had …
ALLEN TULLOS:
Fiddles?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
He loved to fiddle. And they had French harps. But he was crazy about the fiddle, because he loved square dancing.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about your mother?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, she didn't like it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did they go out to some dances ever?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No. My mother wouldn't go.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Why not?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
She just didn't like it. But my daddy liked it. They used to have street dances in Spartanburg, and he loved it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That's that old string band music.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. He loved it, and he liked the fiddles.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did he play a fiddle?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I don't think he did. He had one, but I don't know whether he could play it or not.
ALLEN TULLOS:
There were lots of really good string bands in this part of the country back then.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, there were.
ALLEN TULLOS:
There were some real well-known musicians that later went on to

Page 24
Nashville and places like that.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. He used to go to Asheville and Hendersonville to the square dances, and he loved square dancing. Now I don't care for square dancing.
[Interruption]
ALLEN TULLOS:
About the time you got married, they had some of these strikes and things here in the mills, the unions and the …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I remember that, but I wasn't in that in any way. I don't …
ALLEN TULLOS:
What do you remember, just pictures and things that you heard from that time?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I thought it was terrible. I was scared. No, I didn't have anything to do with that. I don't know much about the strikes. I don't fool with that union, either. I'm scared of it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you remember any people trying to come around and get people to join the union?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes, they'd stand at the gate down there and hand you cards out.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Do you remember the National Guard coming in any time?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
I wasn't working during that time, but I remember when it happened and all, yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did your father and mother ever say anything about unions?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No, back in them days there wasn't any union that I know anything about. No, they never said anything about unions. All this happened after they had left.
ALLEN TULLOS:
When you first started to work there at the mill, do you know who owned the Dunean Mill then?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
It wasn't Stevens, but I don't remember who it was.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Who would you have known or seen or heard of as the superintendent of the mill?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Harold Turner.

Page 25
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did he come around to the different departments a lot?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes, he was real nice.
ALLEN TULLOS:
But you would have seen him and probably not anyone up above him.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
There would be stockholders come through. They've always done that. There used to be a Mr. Franks down here. He was one time over it. Different people. Mr. Tidwell. And they were all very nice.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did you ever hear of this Ellison Smyth?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
No. Where was he at?
ALLEN TULLOS:
He's one of the people that named this mill. He named it after a town in Ireland that his relatives were from. Dunean is an Irish name, and he owned a number of mills and he had lots of stock in some of the mills back then. In fact, there's a street right up here that's named Smyth Street.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
That's the next street. Yes, I know about it. All these streets is named after someone. But I don't remember him.
ALLEN TULLOS:
That would have been way back, twenty years even further back than we're talking about.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Oh, yes. Now my mother probably would have known him, but I did not
[Interruption]
ALLEN TULLOS:
… important for you to know about the pattern chain on these box looms if you were just running a weaving part of it.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Well, that was weaving. The pattern chain was weaving, because that was making the pattern in the cloth. If there was a flower made in the cloth, that pattern on that chain would make it when it come around.
ALLEN TULLOS:
They had someone in another part of the mill to kind of punch out …
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Build the chain. Designers to build the chain.
ALLEN TULLOS:
If something went wrong in the pattern, would you know how to go to the pattern chain and put in a …

Page 26
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You would have pegs in it then?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Pegs in it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
You would know where a peg was out and how to fix it.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
If a peg was missing, you would know it. It would show up in that pattern in the cloth.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And you would know how to identify that and where to put the peg in.
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
Yes. You'd know where to go with that chain to get it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
How would your box loom break down, or what would be the most common problem you'd have with it on a day-to-day basis? If it were to stop, what would be the cause of it, usually?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
The filling would break. It would stop if the filling broke. An end would break in the warp; then it would stop. The stop motion would stop it.
ALLEN TULLOS:
And what would you do then?
EVELYN GOSNELL HARVELL:
If it was an end broke, I'd go behind it and tie it and pull it through. Take a reed hook and draw it in through the eye and into the reed. Then hold it down and start the loom and it'll go right on. And then clip it off after it's… And it wouldn't ever know. It's interesting to weave, to see that cloth get made. Go to buy a piece of cloth now, you can't find none half made. The material is not as good as it used to be. They used to be real particular with it and make good cloth. I don't think they do that anymore. I think they're more after production now than they used to be. But I really enjoyed weaving.
END OF INTERVIEW