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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Letha Ann Sloan Osteen, June 8, 1979. Interview H-0254. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Osteen's long-term job at the textile mill paid her just enough to get by

Osteen worked over twenty years at the mill for just enough wages to pay rent, feed her family, and take care of the family livestock.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Letha Ann Sloan Osteen, June 8, 1979. Interview H-0254. 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

Let's see, how many years did you weave down here?
GEORGIA:
Twenty. Wait a minute, you went to work in 1919 and you didn't quit 'till about '36, yeah, about how many years. Mama you worked about twenty or twenty, twenty and twenty-one years. And she worked one time, I think about three years, and didn't lose a day.
LETHA ANN SLOAN OSTEEN:
Yes, three year. I got off to go to my daddy when he died. I didn't know it'd been that long, and the boss weaver-Dan League, Lora Wright's daddy-he said, "etha, you know when you been out?" I said, "No I don't." He said, "It's been three year since you been off of your job." Well you had to work, you didn't make nothing. People had to work.
GEORGIA:
To buy bread.
LETHA ANN SLOAN OSTEEN:
Well they did, I made eight or nine dollars a week after they'd take my rent out. To feed my family, feed the cow and feed a hog, I kept them there.