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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Walter Durham, January 19 and 26, 2001. Interview K-0540. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Lincoln High was more disciplined than the integrated Chapel Hill High

Durham offers another comparison of the black Lincoln High School to Chapel Hill High School after integration. In an earlier excerpt, Durham described how Lincoln school traditions were left behind when the two schools merged. Here he focuses more on physical differences between the schools. Specifically, he makes clear that Lincoln High School was much more neat and orderly than Chapel Hill High School and also says that discipline was much more lax than it had been at Lincoln.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Walter Durham, January 19 and 26, 2001. Interview K-0540. 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

BOB GILGOR:
Were there other things that occurred, when you went to Chapel Hill High the first year that you noticed were different from Lincoln High?
WALTER DURHAM:
Remember when I was telling you about you could drink out of the commode? Stuff like that. The whole system changed. We went from being scared to drop a piece of trash on the school ground until litter was everywhere. People would take a whole roll of toilet tissue and put it in the commode, and do their business on top of that. We could see that all over the whole school. It was trashy. And I couldn't point a finger to who was doing it, but I know we left one system for another system. We left a system that you better not litter to a system that you could see litter very visible.
BOB GILGOR:
What about the dress code? Was there any difference in the way you could dress?
WALTER DURHAM:
Pretty much. When we was at Lincoln you couldn't walk around with your shirttail out. Stuff like that. You would have to be neat. Even though you didn't have no clothes. There wasn't no whole lot of clothes you had. But what you did have you had to wear it presentable.
BOB GILGOR:
What about hats in school?
WALTER DURHAM:
No. But when we first got to Chapel Hill High School, you couldn't wear no hats either.
BOB GILGOR:
What about hair styles? Was there any difference between Chapel Hill High School and Lincoln? Could the girls wear their hair any way they wanted?
WALTER DURHAM:
I didn't see any difference.
BOB GILGOR:
And discipline? Was there a difference in the way you were disciplined at the two schools?
WALTER DURHAM:
Yes. Very much. Very much difference. When you was at Northside, you would physically get spanked. You didn't have that at Chapel Hill High School.
BOB GILGOR:
So you could get away with things at Chapel Hill High that you couldn't get away with at Lincoln? Is that fair to say?
WALTER DURHAM:
Yes.