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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Carolyn Rogers, May 22, 2003. Interview K-0656. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Interconnectedness of blacks and whites, especially in rural areas

Slavery, Rogers conteds, created social bonds between blacks and whites, which lasted for generations. These bonds often insisted on black deference. Rogers's father resented the system of racial hierarchy and refused to patronize white businesses when possible.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Carolyn Rogers, May 22, 2003. Interview K-0656. 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

CAROLYN ROGERS:
Grocery stores? No. And I don't know where my parents got groceries from. Isn't that funny, I just thought of that, I don't know where they got groceries from. Oh yes I do, Terrell's Grocery Store on [Highway] 54. That was next door to where Mt. Zion Baptist Church is now, was at the corner of Academy and 54 Highway. I think there's a chiropractic office across the street from there. There was a store in the now church parking lot. There was a store there, yes, a little store like Grocery Boy Junior. And that's where my parents got groceries. Because Harrison Avenue wasn't there.
PEGGY VAN SCOYOC:
How did you get to Durham and how did you get to Apex? Did you have a car?
CAROLYN ROGERS:
We had a car. Daddy had a station wagon, because he had so many children, there are eight of us. That's why they called us "Farrar's Army" because my maiden name is Farrar. People would see us and call us Farrar's Army not knowing that we were Farrars. As a matter of fact, I had a student to come through Cary Elementary one year. She had just transferred there. She was a white student, and her last name was Farrar. And I told her, I said, "Oh, your parents used to own my folks." She really didn't know what I meant. I said, "Oh your parents used to own my folks, my parents."
PEGGY VAN SCOYOC:
Do you know the history, do you know what…?
CAROLYN ROGERS:
No, because she was not from that area. My folks came from the Chatham County, Pittsboro area so… Wait a minute, I think she did say some of her relatives were from that area.
PEGGY VAN SCOYOC:
Do you know if there was a plantation that your people came from in that area?
CAROLYN ROGERS:
Daddy does but I don't. We've talked about it briefly because I got into the history part. Then they started remembering not so nice things and they shut it down. I could see Daddy getting angry. My Dad, he is not easy to anger so he was recalling too much stuff so I just…
PEGGY VAN SCOYOC:
Too hurtful?
CAROLYN ROGERS:
Too hurtful, yes. The treatment too hurtful, so I just let it go, dropped it, never picked it up again. I used to work for the Coopers, Coopers Furniture Store. I did some work for, I babysat for Dorothy Cooper and ended up teaching her son. Her son was in my class that particular year and I said, what is your name again? And he told me. I says, I used to babysit you. He was so either embarrassed or excited, he went home and told his Mom, he says, Mom, did Ms. Rogers really babysit me? Of course she doesn't know who Ms. Rogers is. She said, no. He said, but Ms. Rogers said she used to babysit me. So she came to see me and I had to tell her I am Carolyn Farrar, Leonia Farrar's daughter. My mother used to work for them so Dot hired me to babysit. Sure did. I thought, oh this world is getting smaller and smaller. It is very small.