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Group Title: Alice Parrish & Thelma Boltin
Title: Alice Parrish and Thelma Boltin
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Title: Alice Parrish and Thelma Boltin
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Creator: Parrish, Alice ( Interviewee )
Boltin, Thelma ( Interviewee )
Miller, Joyce ( Interviewer )
Publisher: Samuel Proctor Oral History Program
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: October 25, 1976
Copyright Date: 1976
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Bibliographic ID: UF00024695
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
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    Copyright
        Copyright
    Cover
        Cover
    Interview
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
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COPYRIGHT NOTICE


This Oral History is copyrighted by the Interviewee
and the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program on
behalf of the Board of Trustees of the University of
Florida.

Copyright, 2005, University of Florida.
All rights, reserved.

This oral history may be used for research,
instruction, and private study under the provisions
of Fair Use. Fair Use is a provision of United States
Copyright Law (United States Code, Title 17, section
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For all other permissions and requests, contact the
SAMUEL PROCTOR ORAL HISTORY PROGRAM at
the University of Florida

































UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


ORAL HISTORY PROJECT


INTERVIEWEES: Alice Parrish
Thelma Boltin

INTERVIEWEE: Joyce Miller


DATE: October 25, 1976



















M: I'm interviewing Mrs. Alice Parrish and Thelma Boltin in Mrs. Parrish's
home on October 25, 1976, at seven o'clock in the evening. We're going
to talk about life in the thirties in Gainesville and tie that in with
the university and what was going on in the area. Maybe before we
start, you could each make some comments about where you lived in the
thirties.

P: Alice Parrish, my name. I lived right here in Gainesville, Florida, over
in the northeast quadrant near Northeast Boulevard. We had a small
home there where my husband, our little girl and I spent the ten years
from 1930 until 1939. She was a pupil at the P. K. Yonge Laboratory
School and transportation was worked out among the various parents who
lived in this neighborhood. We ran car pools to and from P. K. Yonge,
which then was located in what is now Norman Hall. Each parent would
take one week of five days to take five or six children to school and
bring them home in the afternoon. That was our school for the children
in those years. My background connected with the Parrish Real Estate
and Insurance Companies who were here in business from July 1912 until the
present time. My connection with the university was through my father,
Professor C. H. Willoughby [Professor of Animal Husbandry and Dairying],
who came here in 1912 to teach in the College of Agriculture. Our family
home was only one block from University Avenue. He was able to ride
his bicycle over to Floyd Hall, it is now named, where his classes were
held. Then he took his students to various farms in Alachua County
where he could demonstrate what they had been learning about livestock
in Florida.

M: Okay.

B: My connection with Gainesville goes back to 1907 when my father moved
the family from Orangeburg, South Carolina to establish Coca-Cola in
Alachua County and four or five surrounding counties. My father never
sold Coca-Cola for more than a nickel except during World War I when
sugar was so high. Then he had to go up to six cents, but as soon as
he could he went back down to a nickel. It was men like my father who
made Coca-Cola great. I was educated in the public schools here in
Alachua County in Gainesville from the first through the twelfth grade.
I had the great pleasure of being graduated from high school under
Professor F. W. Buchholz and then coming back in 1929 and '30 to do my
first teaching stint: teaching English in the high school.

M: What principal did you work under at that time?


B: Mr. F. W. Buchholz.















M: You worked under Mr. Buchholz?

B: Yes. Times being what they were, they couldn't employ me the next year,
so I got a job down in Polk County, Winter Haven. I was down there
until 1933 and the impact of the Depression hit us there. We were paid
with scrip. In order to live we had to discount it I believe about
10 per cent. I came back to Gainesville and Prof believed in my training.
I was a speech and English major. Prof believed that we needed public
speaking in the high school, so he employed me again. We had to charge
the students a fee for the speech classes. We sold the idea to the Board
of Public Instruction that it indeed was needed, so I was put on the
county payroll.

M: When you refer to Prof, is that the name that Mr. Buchholz went by?

B: Yes and what a great educator! He was one of the great educators of our
time.

M: Let me ask both of you: you mentioned that your father was connected
with the university and your father was involved in Coca-Cola. Here in
Florida the Depression actually started in '26 because of the land bust,
and then it got worse in '29. How did that affect your father's pay at
the university or how many Coca-Colas you sold and at what price?

P: The pay of the professors at the university was simply not increased. It
stayed at a level where it had been practically all through the 1930s.
However, the real estate and the insurance businesses dropped to the
bottom. We had to start all over again with a different life insurance
company and an assortment of property insurance companies in order to have
an income at all.

B: One of the ways that my father eked out a livable income was to run, in
the wintertime especially, a woodyard on the side, because he had employees
in the Coca-Cola plant that he didn't lay off. Running this woodyard
was a way to keep them employed.

M: Do either one of you recall any real soup lines, any people on the street
asking for money or selling products that occurred in some of the larger
cities like New York City, or was there an absence of this in Gainesville?

P: There was less of it in Gainesville probably than in the big cities that
you read about. However, we did have a soup line in the public schools
which fed the indigent children. My husband, daughter and I lived part
of that decade with my parents so that we actually were sheltered from
the bread lines or soup lines. As soon as the insurance business was
fairly well on its feet, we built a small home over here in Highlands
that I mentioned before and lived there.

B: I'm sure there was less of it in Gainesville than there was in the big
cities, but there was a constant line to our back doors. My mother was















one who never turned a hungry man away, whether he was for real or
whether he was a phony; she didn't question. There was always food to
share for that line to the back door.

M: What was the feeling of the people in terms of the Depression when
Franklin Roosevelt got elected? Did they really feel that was a positive
move or did they have any reaction at all?

P: They were delighted at first. They were very, very happy and that mood
continued until the moratorium on banks, savings and loans, and financial
institutions closed down our access to the cash that we had saved up or
that was deposited. I remember the moratorium lasted at least three days,
maybe longer than that, and Iheard a great deal of criticism then about
that man in the White House. However, when he went ahead and set up
social security and other welfare programs, I heard a different story
around me.

B: He was lauded and just looked up to almost as a god for the CCC [Civilian
Conservation Corps] camps that made work for young men and for the WPA
[Works Progress Administration] that built our badly needed roads through-
out the country. Toward the end of 1939--maybe I'm incorrect in this--
but the water line was thrown from Homestead to Key West, because until
this time Key West and the Keys had to depend on cisterns catching rain
water and the tank ships that came in to bring in extra water. Roosevelt
was indeed looked upon as a savior of our country.

M: Do you recall the WPA working on building the schools, or any particular
projects in town like that?

B: Well, I know of one of the particular projects. I live now in Hamilton
County. We have in White Springs a clubhouse that was built as a WPA
project. Many, many, many towns throughout Florida had clubhouses that
were built by WPA.

P: The present Thirteenth Street Northwest used to have a marker that had
initials on it, "Project WPA, Work Project Administration." They also
set up training schools, vocational shops for anyone who wanted to enroll,
buy their own materials, and learn furniture making, carpentry, whatever.
My husband profited by that in taking the woodworking course. He made
a great deal of the furniture that I have now, repaired, took care of his
fishing boats, and I still have pieces of furniture and traces of his
woodworking in my home.

B: One of the great WPA projects was the cultural program. Under that program
Dr. Alton C. Morris [Instructor in English] at the university, now retired
from the English department, gathered together and published folk songs
of Florida. There was a dramatic contingent that produced plays and gave
out-of-work actors work throughout the state of Florida. Music, arts,
and crafts were another branch.















M: Let's talk a little about the university then in the thirties and perhaps
some of the major events. Do you recall, say, the tung oil festival?
It was almost like a homecoming at that point.

P: The tung oil festival was instituted by Mr. James H. Parrish, who believed
that the climate and soil here in Alachua County was similar enough to
the same conditions over in China for the tung oil trees to thrive and
they did. They grew; of course, the groves were cut back when we had to
have the land for other uses, but the oil extracted from those tung nuts
is still being used as one of the ingredients in paint.

M: Do you recall any of those festivals?

B: They're very dim in my mind.

P: I remember watching a small segment of the tung oil parade on the recent
documentary made by channel 20 CWCJBI on the history of Alachua County.
We had in those years what we would call primitive movie cameras and the
parade going down University Avenue was preserved either on movie film
or on several frames from still-life cameras.

B; I remember the Georgia-Florida games that have been played since time
immemorial in Jacksonville. Dr. J. E. Maines, who was, besides being a
close friend, our doctor said that when he was a senior at the university,
the whole class dressed up in double-breasted overcoats with velvet
collars, spats, gloves, derbies, and carried canes. They went to the
Georgia-Florida game in a body and sat together.

M: At that time, was it also played in Jacksonville?

B: Yes.

M: Do you recall going to any of the football games yourself?

B: Indeed, yes. Oh, we wouldn't miss them for the world.

P: Especially these games that were played here in Gainesville. We used to
think that the kickoff couldn't take place unless we were right there in
the stand watching.

M: In those days, what was the appropriate dress for a football game? Today
it seems casual and yet some schools still dress up in school colors. Was
it a thing to dress up at that time to the games?

P: The students used to dress up more in the colors than we townspeople but
we were expected to wear good-looking clothes and have hats, probably
gloves, everything stylish. We did not go in our old working clothes to
a football game.















B: We would rather have been caught dead than to be in a pair of blue
jeans. We wore our best. Sometimes we suffered in our new fall
clothes in the hot weather.

M: Was the games also at that time played in the middle of the afternoon
like they're played now?

B: Yes.

P: Yes.

M: About how many people would come to a game then? I guess now we have
about 60,000 that come.

P: Anywhere from 1,000 on up. I can even remember the years when we used to
drive over there and park our automobiles around the sidelines, sit in
the car and watch the game.

M: Do you recall ever playing the University of the South from Swannee?

P: Not particularly, no more than any other.

M: Do you recall any exciting experiences that ever took place at a homecoming?

P: I was always a spectator and so was Miss Boltin.

B: Yes, we were.

P: We stood on the sidelines and cheered the students along.

B: When the Pike house and the SAE house were on the corners of old Ninth
Street and University Avenue.

M: That Ninth Street would be what today?

P: Thirteenth Street.

B: The SAE house was on the left....

P: The SAE was on the south side of University Avenue where there's now an
Amoco service station. The Pi Kappa Alphas were on the north corner
where the Flagler Inn....

B: Yes. [Now it's a Holiday Inn.]

M: You mentioned parking on the sideline and driving your car to the game.
I understand that most of the roads around Gainesville were dirt roads
at that time.

P: So they were.















M: Do you recall any experiences getting stuck in the dirt roads or how far
the paved roads went?

P: Oh, my goodness, a shovel was just part of the equipment to dig out.

M: Was there any mass transit at that time: a bus system, taxis?

B: Yes.

P: We had two railroads. The Atlantic Coastline and the T. and J,, Tampa and
Jacksonville.

B: Don't forget the little short that came in from Waldo that met the main
line of the Seaboard at Waldo.

P: The Seaboard and the Atlantic Coastline were the main railways. The little
Tampa to Jacksonville, the T. and J., had its station at the corner of
University Avenue and what is now Sixth Street, now Trailways Bus.

B: That line went to Tallahassee and it was a combination passenger-express
car pulled by an engine that was an automobile engine really. Well, we
might've had some jitney buses. Did we?

P: We did have a few buses that ran from the campus to the downtown area. I
think they were mostly owned by individuals and they started off charging
five cents, which of course was a jitney, and they went up to ten cents,
fifteen cents, and from there on. Most of them went bankrupt. We just
had to depend on our own automobiles.

M: Where would you buy an automobile in the thirties?

B: Mr. J. R. Fowler was the Buick agent. My father and mother favored
Buick automobiles. We had a great big seven passenger open tonneau
automobile, of the kind that you put side curtains up on.

P: Shaw and Keeter, who had the Ford agency, were very popular. Was it
Ogletree who had the Overland?

B: Yes.

P: Willis-Knight Overland Automobile Agency? We bought a car from those
dealers.

M: After a game or on the weekends, do you recall eating out? If so, what
places did you eat in? The Primrose, do you remember perhaps? What
else?

P: The Primrose was right there and the Whitehouse Hotel, but that was for
special people. We did eat there but rarely because the food still















centered around the home fires and the Thomas Hotel, but I don't know
whether I ever went to the Thomas Hotel to dine during the thirties or
not. One of our favorite places in the thirties to eat was Mr. English's
Coffee Pot, which was on University Avenue near the downtown theater.

M: Which theater is that?

P: It's now the Great Southern Music Hall.

B: Yes, and what was it in those days?

P: The Florida Theater.

B: It was the Florida Theater.

P: Usually we went back home to eat after the football games because the
students would celebrate or commiserate, according to the outcome of
the football game. There would frequently be a bonfire right on the paving
at the corner of West University Avenue and Thirteenth Street. There
would be students milling all around the side streets. We just felt it
was their territory and that we would go on home and let them have it.

B: They would often have shirttail parades, too.

P: These were all men, you understand. There was no coeducational college
except during the summertime when the teachers came here to renew their
certificate requirements.

M: Did you ever eat in the Primrose or the Whitehouse or the Thomas?

P: Yes, many times.

B: Oh, sure. For very special occasions and they were elegant places.

M: Were there other places besides that? You mentioned the Coffee Pot.
Were there other luncheonettes such as that?

B: Yes, there were. There were a good many. There was a little place on
University Avenue called the Orange and Blue. It was there for many years.

P: Also the College Inn was popular with the students and the faculty.

B: One of the most popular places.

P: I have a photograph here of the College Inn that was taken about 1926
that shows it was about the only building in that half of the block
and was much better able to cater to family and young people. We fre-
quently went there in the summertime.


B: Mr. Sam Harn was the....















P: Mr. Sam Harn was the manager in those years.

M: Do you recall any of the professors on campus? Do you recall Dr. Tigert?

P: Very clearly.

M: Do you remember any in particular?

B: He was a very down to earth, fine man. We all looked up to him.

P: He and Mrs. Tigert were living at what is now the corner of Northeast
Tenth Avenue and Northeast Third Street. Our little home was just about
a block away from there so we frequently saw Dr. and Mrs. Tigert and
held a great deal of respect for both of them.

B: One of our favorite people at the University of Florida was Claude CL.]
Murphree [Organist and Instructor in the Humanities], who was the
official musician for the university. He had an organ. He was famous
as an organist. He had organ recitals on Sunday afternoon that were
well attended. During World War II, he came to the Gainesville Service-
men's Center, which I directed, and played everything from Bach to boogie
woogie.

M: Do you recall any other professors?

P: Dr. J. N. Anderson was the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, and
he was a very fine educator. His children were contemporaries of Miss
Boltin and myself. We went to school with two or three of the Anderson
children.

M: What I wanted to ask you next was where the ladies did their shopping
in town. Obviously there was no mall at that time because that was
built even after I came here. So where did you go to shop?

P: Wilson's Department Store was our best shopping place for clothes, linens
and household supplies. There were several grocery stores. Downtown on
University Avenue, a Mr. J. G. Harrold had one grocery store and Mr.
George A. Dell had a very nice one down on East University Avenue near
the Kirby Smith School. A Mr. Robinson still has a grocery store at
the corner of Southwest Second Street and First Avenue, the only grocery
store left downtown. But we did have some Piggly Wiggly chain stores and
an A & P, Atlantic and Pacific. Can you remember others, Thelma?

B: Mr. Dorsey had a grocery store, and Mr. Dorsey also had a bakery. Our
furniture needs were met by Cox Furniture Company. Mr. Seagle and
his money helped finance the Seagle Building. He was a bachelor and a
very interesting man. Mr. J. W. McCollum was our druggist. There
was Johnson's Drug Store and, of course, Vidal Drug Store has been a
Gainesville institution from time immemorial. For our hardware needs,















they were met by Baird Hardware Company and Thomas Hardware Company.
We couldn't get along without our bankers, and we had the First National
Bank and we had Uncle Gus Phifer, the Phifer State Bank, which was the
predecessor of Florida National Bank at Gainesville. We called Uncle
Gus the poor man's friend because he never refused a teacher a loan.
Back in the thirties it was necessary in the summertime to borrow money
to tide us over in the summertime. He said our credit was excellent.

M: Which is still of course necessary for teachers.

B: Yes, sure.

M: I wanted to ask you if you were members of churches and if so, which
church and what kind of activities did your church carry on. Also
were you members of organizations such as the women's club, which I
think at the time was called the Twentieth Century Club? Do you remem-
ber some of the activities of that?

B: Yes. I've been a member of the First Baptist Church all my life. When
I moved to White Springs, I moved my membership there, but our First
Baptist Church in Gainesville I still feel is my mother church and we
had many activities. We had a youth organization called BYPU, and we
met on Sunday evening before church. There were always parties and
activities going on throughout the year or throughout the week. We
were members. We helped organize Gainesville Little Theater and we
were members of the Gainesville Woman's Club. My goodness, I must've
belonged to some other clubs but I can't think of what they were.

P: I belonged to the Gainesville Fine Arts Association, one of the early
members and officers in that. The other organizations were mostly
church-affiliated. My church was First Methodist Church downtown.
We had what was in those years called the Women's Missionary Society.
We were instrumental in starting the University Methodist Church which
is now on University Avenue across from the campus. So our interests
spread to the students and other young people as well as to the downtown
residents.

B: I can think of another club to which I belonged that was very important
that both of you were active because you knew Mr. Latour when he ran
the lights there.

P: Wouldn't you say 1935?

B: Oh no, before that, 1928.

P: Before that?


B: At its beginning, yes.
















P: Mrs. Emmaline Buchholz, Professor Buchholz's wife, was the one who
started the Gainesville Little Theater. It ran into difficulties of
all sorts. But about 1935 Miss Boltin would put on plays at the Gaines-
ville High School, the old building that is on West University, and we
could stage very good plays with her assistance and the facilities of
that building.

B: And we did. We really did.

M: Can you think of any in particular?

P: Names of plays?

M: Names of plays.

P: Arsenic and Old Lace. Then another one was Outward Bound. Was that
produced in Gainesville High School?

B: Yes.

P: Little Theater put on a great many like that.

B: Charlie's Aunt.

P: Charlie's Aunt, of course, the old classic. Every year there was a
school class play. The Importance of Being Earnest is another one that
must have been....

B: Yes.

P: Booth Tarkington's Seventeen.

B: Oh yes, and Smiling Through. Through those years when the university
was not yet coeducational, Florida Players had to call on the women
of Gainesville to try out for the plays produced at the University of
Florida.

M: That was when Mr. Constans, I believe, was the head.

B: Yes.

P: Lester Hale.

B: Lester Hale.

M: Do you remember downtown was at one time going to be the Kelly Hotel and
the Dixie Hotel and wound up being the Seagle Building? Can you recall
the look of the building before it got completed and when it got com-
pleted any changes?















P: I can recall it very distinctly because my family, the Parrishes, were
connected with the sale and promotion of that building. It was a skel-
eton so-called for many years and we would look at it as we drove by.
I'd rather not say anymore about it because it gets into financial and
other difficulties from which Mr. John F. Seagle helped rescue.

B: But I thought the thing that you told about the market that was under-
neath the building was interesting.

P: Yes. Someone fenced in one side and the rear entrance of that half-fin-
ished building and sold chickens, vegetables, eggs, anything that the
farmers in the surrounding country could bring. They had an ice chest
refrigerator and tubs of water to keep the green vegetables fresh until
they were sold.

B: A kind of produce market.

M: What about recreation in town? What theaters were there? Besides going
to the springs, what else might you do on a Sunday?

B: What would we do on Sunday? We'd take walks, we'd take automobile rides,
and we'd visit in each other's homes. The ice cream parlors, Miller's
and Marvin's down on the square were closed.

P: Because it was Sunday.

B: So if we didn't go swimming, our entertainment was in our homes.

M: If you did go swimming, where would you go? What springs?

P: Poe Springs near High Springs was one.

B: Yes, and Magnesia Springs.

P: Magnesia Springs over at Grove Park. We frequently went to Lake Santa Fe
and swam at Earlton Beach. For a time there was a cleared beach on
Newnan's Lake called Palm Point, and it was pretty strictly supervised.
The swimming is not very good in much of Newnan's Lake.

B: No. It was pretty muddy. We'd go down to Silver Springs, too. But the
roads were so bad that it'd take us several hours to go and come. That's
when we got stuck.

M: And needed the shovel.

B: Yes, sure did need the shovel.

M: What about the '38 fire, can you recall that at all?


B: You mean downtown?















M: Downtown.

B: That burned the....

M: Courthouse and the square.

B: It didn't burn the courthouse.

P: Not the courthouse.

B: Never burned the courthouse.

M: I guess just the area around it.


B: Yes, I well remember that. I almost never forgave
didn't wake me up, and I slept through most of it.
Avenue, which was renamed Southeast Second Street.
I guess I was almost right at it.


my family because they
I lived on Virginia
So I wasn't too far,


M: What about the difference in costs? Can you think of maybe in terms of
the early thirties and then perhaps later on as compared to today?

P: I'll just mention this one item. In those 1930 years I could take
sixteen dollars and buy groceries for three people. The milk bill was
extra on top of that, but sixteen dollars for three people for seven
days was my grocery allowance.

M: Today if you had to do that, what do you think it would cost?


P: It would cost at least fifty-five dollars to buy
nowadays. In those years I didn't have a maid.
and I did not buy food that was fresh, frozen or
ready to put on the stove.


everything that we need
I walked to the stores,
packaged beautifully and


M: Did you want to make any comment about costs?

B: I can think about a loaf of bread. I bought a loaf of bread not very
long ago. I hadn't really paid any attention to the fact that it cost
fifty-five cents, and we could buy a loaf of bread for a nickel.

M: What would be that ice cream cone? You mentioned sometimes going to an
ice cream place. What would an ice cream cone cost you?

B: A nickel.

P: Five cents for one scoop, ten cents for a double scoop.

M: You mentioned Coca-Cola was about five cents a bottle.


B: Five cents a bottle, yes.















M: Did you ever fear walking outside your house or have any....

B: Never.

M: Did you leave your doors unlocked?

B: Yes, they were always unlocked.

P: We did all of that. The main things we had to watch out for in those
years were the packs of dogs that were not leashed and kept under
control as well as they are nowadays.

B: We just had no fear in our doors, they were always open.

M: When did it come about where people started to change that attitude in
Gainesville? Was it say in the fifties or has it been even more than that?

P: It was earlier than that. It was during the war years.

B: When we had to begin to take...

P: This was World War II.

B: ...care.

M: Do you recall any of the people who ran the government during the
thirties, any of the mayors, CHal C.3 Batey, [Milton] Baxley, EB. M.]
Tench, any of these people?

B: No.

M: Do you recall meeting them, experiences with them?

B: We knew them. They were our friends and we were on very good terms with
them.

M: Did everybody in town sort of know the mayor and the commission personally?

B: Yes.

P: Yes. They were our neighbors, a great many of them. We saw them in our
everyday life.

M: Would you generalize to say that maybe the town was more politically
aware then than it is now?

P: I would say less so.

B: I would too.














M: Less so then?

P: It was less so in those early years.

B: Yes.

P: We didn't have the organizations that broadcast through all the available
media that we do have now.

B: You have to remember that communications were....Radio was not as common
in those days as it is now. The television was ...

P: Something of the future.

B: Yes.

P: It was just a dream of the future--television. Here is a daily column,
WRUF, beginning at 8:00 in the morning and signing off at 9:30 in the
evening. It included a morning news review at 8:45 and some music
appreciation, sheriff and police reports, U. S. public health talk,
symphonic program, organ recital, weather forecast, "In Greek," "Florida
Farm Hour," "Rotary Club," "Musical Parade," "Florida Facts," "Educational
Hour," "World Book Man," "Hour with the Masters,"U. S. Army sketches,
and so on right on through. We had a few local musicians: Ann William-
son, pianist; Ann Wilson, songs. Eight o'clock the Florida Collegians
and 8:30 Barbara Morrell and Theo Carl with orchestra. Now that was
CBS. Then at 9:15 there was a program called "The Roughians" and at
9:30 the sign-off.

M: Was that about the only radio station that most people listened to?

P: It was the only radio station in Gainesville.

M: What was the relationship between the townspeople and the university? I
know that when I came here about ten years ago there was still sort of
a resentment between the two that I believe has since been bridged.
Did you feel that there was any kind of resentment or any kind of wall
between the university and the townspeople in the thirties?

B: Not that we knew of.

P: Not by 1930, no. The people in Gainesville had been reconciled to having
the university here, and they did not consider all of the professors
Yankees or fools as they did designate them sometimes in the earlier
years.

M: Were there many Yankees in town or were most of the people in Gainesville
native-born?

P: Indeed there were a great many northern people here, and they came from
all parts of the country.















B: Many of them came for health reasons. They weren't all connected with
the University of Florida. But they came for health reasons. The
promotion through this area was for health.

M: Do you recall any controversy about the Cross Florida Barge Canal as
early as the thirties?

P: Yes.

B: Indeed we did.

P: We certainly heard all the controversies that are now being aired and
more of them, too. It was started in the 1930s and abandoned because
the money ran out and because of the surrounding property holders'protest.
Then it was restarted in the Nixon era and I hope that it will not con-
tinue to endanger our fresh water supplies that are underground. The
Ocala aquafer is one of our main sources of pure fresh water.

M: Do you recall that also?

B: Yes, indeed I do.

M: Were there any diseases at that time that were prevalent in town at all?
Any kind of epidemics in the thirties: rickets, hookworm, anything like
that?

B: If you're in the Depression because of very poor diet.... There was an
incident of hookworm and rickets all purely from poor nutrition.

M: Do you recall any relationships with blacks during the thirties? Was the
black community separated or part of the town or what kind of relationship
did people like the Chestnuts or A. Quinn Jones or Charlie Duval...?

P: They were separated. They had their own schools, their own churches
and their own stores. According to the individual person, we either
respected them and traded with them, or we looked down on them and
didn't want them living right next door to us or eating at the same
restaurants with us.

B: Certainly Charlie Chestnut, Sr. was the outstanding black citizen of
Gainesville. He was highly respected.

M: What was he involved in?

B: In the mortuary business.

M: Even then?

B: Oh, yes.

M: What kind of things would you like to tell me? I've directed most of
the questions, but I'm sure you probably have a few things you'd like to
say completely on your own.















P: I get fascinated when I look back at these photographs of the styles,
the dresses that we wore in those years and were considered so glamourous.
We copied, .as faithfully as we could, the clothes of the movie actresses
that were popular at that time. We had a very industrious fashion editor
on the staff of the Gainesville Sun, Miss Sophie Burkhim, and she would
give us style hints. We would have photographs of clothes that were
going to be the thing to wear that year. Then too, our automobiles were
so different in those years. We had nothing even resembling air con-
ditioning. If we took any heaters along with us, they had to be little
portable heaters that we could put in the floor of the car, which, of
course, was dangerous. We didn't have the enclosed sedan cars as often
as we do now.

B: Perhaps that was the reason for the closed hat that was sort of like a
felt....

P: Helmet.

B: A helmet that fitted right down over the head and bound the hair tightly.
The hair certainly couldn't fly. I think one of the impressive things
was that we were modest. We wore dresses that covered our knees and came
half way down our legs if not to the ankles, and our bathing suits were
modest.

M: Let me end the tape by thanking both of you very much for spending this
time with me.




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