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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Jim Goodnight, July 22, 1999. Interview I-0073. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Persistence of traditional industries despite information sector growth

In this excerpt Goodnight evaluates North Carolina's place in the evolution of industry from manufacturing to information and technology. He notes that North Carolina is still a leader in traditional industries like hog farming and that despite the state's high-tech future, it has a long way to go.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Jim Goodnight, July 22, 1999. Interview I-0073. 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

I want to ask some questions about your perspective on the wider economic transition in the state. You mentioned a moment ago that here in the RTP -- or the Triangle, maybe -- you think we've got enough built business space now in relation to the infrastructure. It reminded me that I wanted to ask your perspective on how far along this evolutionary trajectory has North Carolina come in itself from its traditional economic character -- textiles, agriculture, tobacco manufacturing, furniture -- to the high tech future. Is North Carolina there? JG: Well it's hard to say. I think we're still one of the biggest turkey producers and biggest hog producers in the country. We're still having an awful lot of agriculture here in this state, and that's not going to go away. A lot of it's becoming more corporate though, than anything else. We're seeing these huge companies with hog farms down east. I think it'll continue to be a blend of these, but you know these agri-businesses that we see now, even they are getting more high tech. The day of the family farmer with forty acres out there is quickly coming to an end. We can see more and more corporate type farms, but North Carolina certainly has come a long way in the move to an information age. I guess that's what we'll think of the next century as, the information age or the knowledge century.