Interviewee: Darrell Anthony
Interviewer: Jenn Garrett
Date: November 19, 2004
G: Today is November 19, 2004 and l=m interviewing Darrell Anthony about
Flavets. Darrell, where are you from?
A: [I was] born and raised in a small family farm in northern Illinois.
G: When were you married?
A: July 11, 1944.
G: You=ve already told me that you are a veteran. Tell me a little bit about your
A: I joined the Navy, I guess I really signed up for it in late spring or early summer of
1942, after Pearl Harbor. I actually went [on active duty] in July. I did my year. I
did basic training at Great Lakes Naval Training Center [on] Lake Michigan in
northern Illinois. From there, I went to California. I was in an outgoing unit. I
had hoped, since I had been doing work as a rodman and an instrument man of
survey parties doing some construction work, to join the Sea-Bees [U.S. Navy
engineering corps]. What happened was there were only 300 men in the
outgoing unit and they took every one of us to a hospital corps school in San
Diego, California. I went through hospital corps schools, and later in San
Francisco to Medical Technology School. Then I was transferred, since the
Marine Corps has no medical personnel; only Navy personnel [do that]. I did my
tour of duty in the South Pacific: Guadalcanal, New Georgia, [and] Bouganville B
the island-hopping. I was not on Iwo Jima. That=s it. I came back in 1944 on a
thirty-day leave and we were married and I went back out to Hawaii the second
time. That about does it. I came back at the end of the war.
G: Did you attend school before you entered the service?
A: No. Only high school. Small, rural high schools in Illinois at that time did not
offer college courses. I had no college courses, nothing.
G: At that time, were you planning on going to college?
A: No. I never dreamed that I could ever. Money-wise or education-wise, I was not
prepared. [I had] no college preparatory courses. No, I never dreamed about it.
It wasn=t until after I got out that the G.I. Bill was available. A university or
college had to at least try me if I had a high school diploma, even if I did not have
college preparatory courses at that time. I got a job in Orlando doing a
technicians job, is what it=s called, my profession. I went to Orlando Junior
College then came up here to the University of Florida in 1951. Then I
graduated in 1954.
G: What year were you released?
A: I think it was November,1945.
G: You, at that time, were in Orlando?
A: No. At that time, I returned to our home in Illinois. Late in January, I had a sister
living in Orlando. We went down there to visit her and I got a job down there.
That=s it. My work was with the federal government. I started living in Texas
and Oklahoma and back to Texas and then eleven and a half years in the
Washington D.C. area. Then we came back to Florida.
G: How did your military experiences change your values and your outlook on life?
A: I suppose it=d be right to say I grew up. I became more mature on my outlook
on practically everything. lt=s been so long ago now. I think I could have given
you a more succinct description forty years ago when it happened, because I
was just so glad to be out and be home when it was all over with. I know it
changed me, but l=m not sure just how it changed me, other than the fact that I
was certainly a more mature individual in every way than when I went in. I was
very fortunate that I never got seriously injured. The only thing I came out with
was a pretty good case of malaria from the South Pacific.
G: How did you come to the decision to go to school?
A: I was working in Orlando at an entomology laboratory for the United States
Department of Agriculture. Since I had been a medical technologist and had
malaria, I knew that mosquitos carried malaria and I knew which mosquitos
carried malaria. It was natural for me to go to work at this place. It happened
purely by luck that I got the job. I got the job, I think, partly because I had some
experience with putting oil on water in the South Pacific and following other
peoples instructions on how to control mosquitos. I think that helped me
probably get the job as far as that's concerned. Anyway, I worked there for a
couple of years and then I decided I wasn=t going to be getting anywhere, but
my boss was making a whole lot more money than I did. So I decided I had the
G.I. Bill, I was going to try to go to school and see if I could become an
entomologist, which I did.
G: Do you think you would have gone back to school without the G.I. Bill?
A: No way. At that time, we had a little daughter and a family started. At that time,
if I hadn=t had the G.I. Bill to see me through ... I worked the whole time I was
up here in school. I went to Orlando Junior College and worked full-time when I
did that. I took courses in the evenings and whenever I could work them in. My
bosses knew what I was doing, and they let me have the time off to go to school
every day for an hour. I made up the time on weekends. They were
instrumental in allowing me to do it. The reason for that was to see whether I
was capable or not of doing college work at the Orlando Junior College. I was.
Then I came up here.
G: Why did you decide to come to the University of Florida?
A: Primarily because we had a little house that we had built in Orlando. We were
able to rent that. That was an income. This was close enough so we could
certainly keep track of the rental and everything else. It was the closest full
university that had an entomology department that was near us. l=d say
proximity was the main thing. Rollins College didn't even offer courses like this.
Although Florida Southern was not much bigger than Orlando Junior College at
that time, in Lakeland, it was primarily a Methodist religious school. This was the
only school that was ever thought about, primarily because of proximity.
G: You mentioned that you didn't have to go through an application process to go
to the University of Florida?
G: Was that part of the G.I. Bill?
G: When you decided you wanted to come to UF, how did you let them know?
A: You had to make out an application, which I did. You had to give them all the
information for wherever you finished high school to make sure you had a high
school diploma, and what courses you had in high school, not that it meant
anything. They had them and looked them over. When the Dean called me in
and told me, you weren=t a very good student in high school. I said, no, I never
dreamed I would ever be in this position. I said, l=m going to go here and I=m
going to try.
G: Did you know that they had to let you in?
A: Yes. If you wanted to go to school on the G.I. Bill, they could flunk you out in six
weeks. But they had to give you a try. I was going to say they had to, but the
University of Florida did. l=m not saying all universities had to do that, but I think
very possibly this was the thing that land-grant colleges did, more so than private
schools. I think probably because of the price of private schools at that time,
compared to land-grant [universities]. When I came up here, good Lord, I don=t
think the in-state students paid much more than $40 or $50 a semester for a full
load [of credits]. I didn't get it for that. The universities charged all G.I. Bill
students out-of-state tuition. l=m not sure, but I think it was $150 a semester.
Maybe $200. Dirt cheap by today=s standards. That=s it.
G: Did the G.I. Bill pay for a semester=s tuition based on the number of years you
were in the service?
A: Not really. I think that you got the whole thing if you had a minimum, you=d have
to check me out on this, l=m not sure. I believe if you had a G.I. Bill of eighteen
months, that sort of rings a bell for me, maybe it was a year, but I think it was
eighteen months, you got enough for a four-year education. Of course, you
could do what I did, my G.I. Bill took me all the way through my four years of
college and my masters degree, except that I had to come back down here. I
was working in Maryland, and I came back down here for the summer term
before I got my degree. I took off six weeks and came down here for a six weeks
summer term in 1959 and finished. Sometime in the last year before you got
your degree, you had to have something in residence. I had to pay for that.
G: You started UF in 1951 ?
A: I started taking courses [at] Orlando Junior College, I believe in 1948, then
transferred up here in 1951.
G: In the St. Petersburg Times in 1946, a university cheerleader was quoted to have
said, they, meaning the veterans, have no school spirit; all these people were
interested in was getting an education. Do you think that this statement was still
true about the veterans in 1951 that were at the university?
A: lt=s half true. Most of the people we had at Flavet all went to the football games.
I think they had school spirit. Let=s put it this way. They were not joiners of
fraternities. They did not join school clubs. They did play intramurals. Flavet
Three always had intramural teams in football, tag football, basketball, in
everything. That=s true to a degree. It was my goal.
G: What was your goal?
A: My goal was to get an education. That was it. It didn't go much beyond that.
We went to football games. We cheered for the Gators. We didn't have much
to cheer about. I wouldn't put it as harshly as that individual put it, but it is true
to a degree. I think most of the people that lived in Flavet were here for one
thing only; an education. That permeated their thinking as far as joining and
being active in any school activities.
G: Were you more motivated than an entering freshman in 1951 ?
A: I think so.
G: Why was that?
A: Because for me coming up here was a part of my job. I wanted to become a
professional scientist. That was my goal, and that's the way to attack it.
G: You studied entomology at UF?
G: What did you expect that your life at the University of Florida would be like?
A: I don=t know whether I really had any expectations, as far as that's concerned,
outside of, I knew I had a plan for and had received permission. By the way, the
differences in culture today and then, you didn't get any university favor
[eligibility for Flavet] until you showed them your marriage certificate. I knew that
we had requested it and we were told that there would be one for us. Housing at
the university for my wife and our daughter. We came up here with our eyes
wide open, waiting to see what was going to happen.
G: Did you move right into Flavet the first semester?
A: Yes, we did.
G: Do you think that you would have been able to attend the University of Florida if
it weren=t for the Flavets?
A: No. I do not believe we could have afforded it. Remember, we were only paying
$30-something a month for a two-bedroom apartment. That would have cost us
at least double and probably more, if we could have found one in Gainesville.
We couldn't get anything for less than $100 a month. We certainly could not
have afforded that.
G: Was there still a severe housing shortage in 1951 in Gainesville?
A: l=m not really too sure. I wouldn't say severe, but there certainly was as far a
students are concerned. Especially at that time. Many, many juniors and
seniors preferred to live [off-campus]. Their idea was to keep freshmen and
sophomores, as many as they could, on-campus. That was their goal to do that.
Many juniors and seniors lived off-campus. Single men and women. When I
was here, almost all women lived on-campus in two or three dormitories.
G: Mallory, Yulee, Reid, and Broward?
G: Did you know how much longer it would take you to graduate when you came up
A: Approximately, yes. I thought l=d get out maybe a semester or possibly
assuming what I did. But what I did was, I got a job with a veterinarian doing
entomological work. I ended up taking off my summers. Just getting away from
schoolwork and working full-time during my summers. That spread me out for
three months every summer. I quit in May and didn't go back until September,
and I worked full-time and got paid for full-time work all during the summer. That
helped us through, too.
G: Were you able to live in Flavet while you were doing that?
G: You could live there through the summer even if you weren=t in classes?
A: Sure could. We did, anyway.
G: How did you balance your school responsibilities with your family
A: I had a very understanding family. When you talk to Dorothy. She knew I had a
job to do. We approached our family life as this was just another job. I spent a
lot of hours in that library. She didn't see me until ten-thirty or eleven p.m. I had
a desk, of course, in there. I did a lot of work at home. There was no television.
There was nothing to distract your mind while you were doing it. Maybe the
radio, but that was about it. As a family, we just simply approached it as this was
G: You mentioned that you knew about Flavet before you moved to Gainesville. Do
you remember how you found out about it?
A: I knew some people who had come down to our lab that were in entomology up
here. I knew these people, and I had talked to some people. I knew it was
available. Not only that, but housing at different colleges, not only Florida,
almost all college campuses, certainly in the Southeast, all had set up temporary
married housing facilities, just simply to take care of the World War II veterans
who wanted to go to school. I think I heard about it from a couple of them. I
think there was also information available in the papers. When I got the
applications and the material I needed for Florida to fill out and to send in, we
came up here, too. We made a trip up here. I filled out papers. When I filled
out papers up here to do this, we came up here early one morning and spent the
entire day up here talking to people. At that time, I filled out the application for
the housing. Later on I found that we would get the housing.
G: Which Flavet did you live in?
G: You were moving from your own home that you had built yourself in Orlando to
Flavet. Was that hard to do? Was it not as nice as your home?
A: No, it wasn=t as nice as our own [home]. But they were fully furnished. As I
recall, our Flavet unit, Dorothy, you can straighten me out on this, it seems to me
that we didn't even have a refrigerator. We had an icebox. We said, that
couldn't happen. We went to Sears and bought a small refrigerator. I believe
that's what happened. I may be wrong. It had a bed and a mattress, and
another single bed. We just had one daughter.
G: It was a two-bedroom?
A: Yes, it was a two-bedroom. There was one bath. Two bedrooms and one bath.
A kitchen big enough for a small table the three of us could sit and eat in. A
fairly decent-sized living room with a sofa and two chairs and a desk and a desk
chair. It was completely furnished. About all we really had to bring was our
G: What did you do with the furniture that you had in Orlando?
A: We rented our house.
G: With the furniture?
A: With the furniture in it. It didn't amount to a whole lot. We did not have a whole
lot of furniture in it. I don=t remember if we may have brought a piece or two up
here with us in the car. We never did load up a trailer and bring it up or anything
like that. Whatever we brought up here was small enough to fit in the trunk of
our car. We might have stuck a chair in or something like that, I don=t recall.
G: What were the floors made out of?
A: Wood. I think all the floors were wood. We ended up upstairs.
G: Were all the apartments the same on the interior?
A: Pretty much. The different locations, we were on the end. We had an upstairs
then. We had windows on three sides. Those on the interior only had air
straight through because there was no air conditioning. We bought a window fan
and sucked the air from one side of the house to the other in the summertime.
G: Were there any optional amenities such as fans that you could rent from the
university or anything else?
G: Was the electricity included?
G: Did they charge you anything extra for your fan or the refrigerator?
A: I don=t think so. In fact, I don=t remember us paying utilities. I don=t remember
us paying utilities. I think we had a gas heater. Just a little open-flame gas
G: Was that enough?
A: Yeah. Especially since we were upstairs, because the heat from down below
went right up through the floors.
G: Did you have a washing machine or anything like that?
A: No. The Flavet had a wash house [with] washing machines. I don=t remember
whether those were pay washers or not.
G: My records show they were coin-operated.
A: Coin-operated. That=s probably right then.
G: Did you use the clotheslines or they had driers?
A: I think we probably used clotheslines. I don=t remember, I really don=t. She=ll
G: I know you were very busy with school and with work. Did you have time to help
out with any of the chores around the house?
A: Very minor. I was busy. She took care of almost all of that, even after she
started to work for the university.
G: You mentioned the heat would rise up through the floors, being on the second
floor. Were there any issues with sound?
A: Yeah. Our little girl had a tricycle. She=d ride around up there and it drove the
people down below crazy for a while. She would [sound effects] across the floor
on that tricycle. She wouldn't do that at night when he was home studying, but
she could do it in the daytime when they weren=t around or it wasn=t
bothersome. A lot of times I would just make sure she wouldn't do it at all. I
would take the tricycle downstairs and let her ride it out there. l=d stand out
there and make sure she didn't get hit by cars out in the street.
G: Were you allowed to have pets?
A: No, no pets.
G: Can you describe the social life of Flavet Three?
A: We may have been different than a lot of people. We did not have a lot of close
friends. We were friendly with all of our neighbors. I can only remember once or
twice where we ever had parties or anything where a whole group of people
came, once or twice maybe, in the three years we lived there. We were friendly
and sociable. We had closer friends with some people in our department. We
lived right in back where the ATO [Alpha Tau Omega fraternity] house [is now].
The other people lived over not too far from where the band shell [is now], on the
other side of Flavet Three, we had some other friends, my wife worked with the
wives that lived in the other places. We really didn't have much of a social life
as far as getting together and parties. Most everybody out there, as you pointed
out that that person said, they were there for a goal, and they were there to get
the job done. That was it.
G: You mentioned that there were some intramural sports teams. I know that there
was a board of commissioners. Do you know anyone who was on that board?
Were you active in any of it?
A: I was not. The only name that rings a bell with me was a Blue Key. The guy on
Blue Key is about the only one I knew that got into Student Government for the
Flavet. Although we always had a mayor. Terrell Sessums [later Speaker of the
Florida House of Representatives], who I believe is now a Tampa lawyer, a big-
shot, was one of the mayors. He was Blue Key. I knew who he was, I was not a
friend of his. I didn't know him personally. He=s the one that comes to mind.
There were several. I don=t know how often they had a new mayor. He may
have been there two or three years. I don=t know.
G: What backgrounds did residents have?
A: Varied. Highly varied. The people across the hall from us, he was getting his
Ph.D. in speech therapy. An individual right below us was in education. People
we knew across the street were in engineering. In fact, two other people in our
building were in engineering. Another was in forestry. Another way down the
street a ways, he just retired from the DPI out here on 34th St. He turned out to
be a nematologist. He lived down there the same time as I was.
G: So they were varied in what they studied, but were all of them white?
A: Yes. They were at that time.
G: Were most people from Florida? You were from Illinois, was that unusual?
A: I don=t know whether they were. But I was really from Florida because we
moved over here from Orlando. I would say most of the people in Flavet very
probably were from Florida. l=m sure many of them were from different states,
but I would make a guess that most of them were from Florida. The reason I say
that now is because one woman we knew came all the way from Weekiwachee,
if you know where that is, clear over in the Panhandle. It was about sixty-five or
seventy miles southwest of Tallahassee. I think probably most of them were
G: How did residents celebrate holidays?
A: Many of them went home. Many of them went home to their homes. A few
stayed around, but not too many of them stayed around.
G: Did you stay in town?
A: No. We frequently went to my sisters in Orlando. My father had passed away
and my mother was living with my sister in Orlando. We=d usually go down on
Christmas. If you had a whole week off, like you did at Christmas, we almost
always left town.
G: I read in the archives that movies were occasionally shown in Flavet. Did that
happen while you were there?
A: Yes, it did. It was shown over by the wash house. I don=t think we ever went to
G: Where did they project it?
A: I don=t know. I remember them telling about they were going to show a movie.
Somebody told me that they showed them regularly in Flavet One. That was the
one that was down there behind engineering. Right in its place where WRUF
[campus radio station] and that whole area was Flavet. They showed them
regularly over there and the people who lived in Flavet Three would see them.
They were outside. There was no building, so anything they showed was
G: Do you keep up with anyone that you met in Flavet?
A: No. That=s the thing about it. Well, the one guy, I don=t keep up with him, but I
see him, talk to him at the center. See him around town. See him at meetings.
One fellow, Bob Esser, I was in school with who lived out there the same time I
did. We did keep up with another fellow who=s in forestry, an entomologist that
moved in and was the state of Florida=s forestry entomologist for a long time,
Charlie Chellman. We lost track of them now, too, now that their kids are all
grown and gone.
G: Were there any groups of people who tended to socialize together, such as
couples with children?
A: Everybody had children out there. Some of them had three or four, and how
they took care of them in those places, I don=t know, but they did. There were a
few stay-at-home mothers, especially those that did have two or more kids.
They were able to stay at home. Maybe sometimes they would be around during
the daytime and they would work at night when he was home. l=m not too sure
about that. We did not socialize with the people other than to say hi and to talk
for a few minutes.
G: Were there ever any church services held in Flavet?
A: Not to my knowledge.
[End of side A1]
G: What did you do for recreation while living in Flavet? I know you were very busy
with school, but there must have been something that you did.
A: Not really. I don=t recall very much. In the summertime we=d go to Wauburg
[Lake Wauburg, student recreation area south of Gainesville] some. In the
summertime, we had friends that we went to church that we were closer with that
we had picnics with them and go to the beach with the people from the First
Methodist Church downtown. We met a couple there that had children our age
and we knew several other people there, too, that we did things with. We had
another couple that we were in school with that he ended up in Palatka and he
studied electrical engineering. He just couldn't hack it. He finally quit after two
years. He never did live in the Flavet. He rented a house there in town. He
never did live in the Flavet. He opened up a [store] and sold radios and
televisions and appliances and opened up an appliance store in Palatka.
G: There was an incident noted in the Flavet board of commissioners meetings
about whether one of the residents maid would be able to use the laundry
facilities for cleaning their employers clothes. Did you ever hear anything about
G: Did you or any of your friend have a maid?
A: No. Not that I know of [laughter].
G: Were there any single veterans living in Flavet?
A: I don=t think a single person could get into Flavet.
G: What happened when you or someone in your family got sick?
A: We had a doctor for our daughter. The only time I ever went to a physician in
Gainesville, that I can remember, was that I had a bad case of athletes foot
when I got out of the service. It flared up and came back. Finally it got so bad I
was afraid I was going to lose my foot. I went to the infirmary. They put me on
penicillin and they treated it and treated it, and that's the first time I found out I
had a reaction. I hadn=t been on penicillin before and I got a reaction to it. They
finally got it cleared up. Thank God l=ve been cleared up of it ever since. l=m
sure we did have a family physician that we both went to from time to time. I
know Dorothy did because she=s asthmatic. She had to have a physician who
would give her prescriptions for asthma medicine. l=m sure we went to one.
She got in an accident coming out of work at the university administration
building. They=ve got a crosswalk. She started to cross the crosswalk and this
guy refused to stop and hit her.
G: This is while you were living in Flavet?
A: No. I had graduated, and we moved out of Flavet and we were living in an
apartment down near campus. She did have to go to the hospital for that. She
came home the same day. It didn't break anything. They x-rayed her left knee
and all. That knee was never, ever the same again. That=s the only time either
one of us had anything serious happen to us.
G: Your malaria didn't ... ?
A: No. I got over that while we were still in Orlando. I went to a doctor and I was
having some problems with it, and I went to this doctor and he put me on what
he said at that time was a new drug called chloriquin, and he put me on a thirty-
day regimen of it and it knocked it out and l=ve never been bothered since.
G: Did you know about the volunteer fire department in Flavet Three?
A: I knew about it. I did not volunteer for it. I knew it was there.
G: That was just to serve the Flavets?
G: Was fire a big concern for you?
A: Any time you=re in a wooden building like that, it=s got to be something you
keep on your mind and really be cognizant of. 1=11 tell you, a little accident in
there and that building would go [sound effect] so quickly it would make your
head swim. It was nothing but pure wood.
G: Were there ever any incidents of fire?
A: Not while I was there. Not that I knew of. I understand that there were fires from
time to time, but I don=t remember it ever happening. If it ever happened while I
was there, it was minor and they got it taken care of quick.
G: Did you feel safe living in Flavet?
G: Did you feel like there was a sense of community living in Flavet?
A: Not really. Well, that comes from the standpoint of close friends. As far as
community is concerned, yes. It was like any other community. They didn't
have sidewalks or anything, but you had your one-way streets. I feel like most
people were very accommodating to others, or they tried to be so far as they
could. They tried to keep their children under control. In that sense, yes, it was
a community. As far as close friends are concerned, as you talk to other people,
you may find they give you completely different answers than the way I felt about
it. I did not have much community spirit.
G: Were you proud that you lived there?
A: Oh, yeah. Sure. It was an experience, let=s put it that way. A real life-
G: Dean of Students R.C. Beatty was quoted as saying that there was a low divorce
rate in the Flavets. Beatty=s explanation for this was that the veterans of this era
have something in the way of character. What do you think the character was
that he was talking about? And what kept these families together?
A: Well, I think maybe our time and our ages. Most of us were Depression kids.
The early 1930s Depression kids. We=d seen hard times. Our mothers and
fathers did not divorce. I think when people married at that particular time, they
considered it married for life. I certainly did. We have. I think his observation
was correct. I think divorce was an exception rather than a practice. I think
probably then the main reason for it probably was infidelity. At that time, it just
didn't happen that often. lt=s happened ever since biblical days, as far as
that's concerned. People change. I think it had to do with the way people were
brought up and the way you grew up and the moral culture that most individuals
had at that time. That=s my explanation for it.
G: What kinds of rules were in place for living in Flavet?
A: I don=t think there were any special rules. The one thing that you couldn't have
in there, because the electrical lines wouldn't have it, you could not have electric
heaters. We were told you couldn't have it. You couldn't have electric hot
plates. You could have a fan or something like that. As far as rules for living,
very little. Traffic patterns were enforced. One-way streets and so forth and
traffic speed limits.
G: Was traffic a big problem?
A: It could be, especially afternoons when the kids get home from school. They=re
all out there playing in the streets. Car traffic itself was not too bad. People
come and people go as far as that's concerned. I had a little motor bike at that
time I rode most of the time. I didn't take the car up on campus.
G: Did most residents own a vehicle?
A: Yeah. Almost all.
G: Were you able to park that right by your building?
A: Yeah. Close to it anyway.
G: Was there anywhere where you could lodge a complaint if you had a complaint
against a neighbor? Do you recall any altercations?
A: l=m sure there was. In our particular area I don=t ever recall one. There may
have been one we didn't know about. l=m sure there was. l=m sure there had
to be, whether you take it to the mayor, or whether you take it up to the housing
office. I imagine all disputes like that would have to be resolved in the housing
office. Of course, you were given a list of rulings of what you could and couldn't
do or they could expel you from there.
G: l=ve read about the mayor and commissioners at Flavet Village. Did all three
Flavets have separate mayors, or was there one mayor for each one?
A: I don=t know about the others. The only one I know, Flavet Three Village, was
the biggest of the three. As far as I know, he didn't have anything to do with the
rest of them.
G: What kind of power did the mayor have?
A: Very little. We had the wash house with the washing machines. Later on we
had a little store there that you could go to and get bread and maybe a few
sundries. I don=t recall that they had milk, because milk would require
refrigeration. It seems to me that later on they would get something to put some
milk in. I know they could get bread there and a few other things, too. I suppose
that this is the type of the thing that the mayor [had to do with]. He didn't run it.
Somebody else ran it when it was open. I think it was open real early in the
morning. The wash house was for people who stayed there and was open all
day. It was always that the store part of it was open.
G: When it came to voting on the mayor and the commissioners, was each
household allowed to vote or each individual in the household?
A: I don=t recall.
G: Do you know if women were allowed to serve on the board?
A: I don't know that, either. I would think that they probably were. I would have
thought they would, because everybody there was a member of the community,
you know what I mean. So I would have thought so, but I don=t know.
G: What were the most controversial local issues among residents?
A: I don=t really know, we hadn=t been concerned enough because we only had
one child. Probably the children. That=s just a guess.
G: People watching out for their kids?
A: That or kids going out and getting in trouble with other kids. The kids fighting
between themselves, that type of thing. Most of them where we lived kept their
children under good control. We had no problems. But there was an awful lot of
families and an awful lot of kids.
G: What were the age ranges of the children?
A: Anywhere from babies to, I would say, about the oldest I ever saw was ten or
twelve years old. That=s about the oldest. l=d say ninety percent of them were
probably under ten. l=m not sure. I=d say ten or twelve. l=d say most of them
were in the range from babies, because there were a lot of people who had
babies while they were in there. There were a lot of pregnant women in Flavet.
Every day. There were a lot of them who had babies while they were there.
G: Was there a nursery in Flavet Three?
A: Yes. l=d say almost all the children were under ten. There may be a few over
that, but not many.
G: When you were living in Flavet, did most wives work? You mentioned that the
wives who had less than two children were more likely to.
A: A lot of them worked.
G: They would leave their children in the nursery?
A: Fortunately, men had classes. As soon as our little girl started school, Dorothy
went to work. She went to school all day, and then the school bus would drop
her off, and I was able, with few exceptions, to be home in the afternoons about
the same time she got let off the bus. A few exceptions were she did that and I
think one of the ladies would look after her until I got there. Dorothy got off at
four thirty. I think it was four thirty they got off anyway.
G: How old was your daughter in 1951?
A: She was born in 1946. She was five when we came up here. She started
school the next year. Dorothy did not work. She put her in nursery school, but
she was not real happy. She just cried the whole time. But then she was five.
She had a job at the university, too, and she quit it. She stayed with her that
whole year. The next year [my daughter] was in school, so she went to work.
She worked all the way until the next three years.
G: The bus would come to Flavet to pick up the kids?
A: The first year, the bus hauled them all the way over to Stephen Foster
[Elementary School]. Stephen Foster was a pretty new school at that time.
That=s where she went her first year. The next year she went to Finley [J.J.
Finley Elementary School, north of campus]. Then she went to Finley the rest of
her time in preschool years until we left in 1956.
G: How much of a concern was money to you when you lived in Flavet?
A: It was a concern. We pretty much lived from hand-to-mouth, as far as that's
concerned. We sure didn't have any savings account or anything like that. The
old car we had was paid for. We didn't have a lot of expenses at that particular
time. We were getting money from the house we rented in Orlando. I worked a
minimum of fifteen hours a week and up to twenty or twenty-five hours a week
my time there. She worked full-time at the administration building on campus.
We made out all right.
G: Can you give me an idea of your typical day? How did you fit in all of your
classes and your hours that you needed to work and then be able to come home
A: Sometimes I didn't come home at four-thirty. If I worked a fifteen-hour week, I
tried to put in one day that I could put in about five or six hours. I didn't have
any afternoon labs or anything. I could get out there right at noon and work all
the way up to four-thirty or five p.m. That meant I could work the other times to
go out and do small jobs and work two hours at a time or maybe three hours at a
time. That=s the way I worked that. I was able to work it around classes and
labs that I had. That was just juggle work times. They allowed me to juggle work
times whenever I could. Then we had other things that was always supposed to
be done for at least two or three hours on Saturday. They wanted to check
things where I worked. I was able to utilize that. The man that was in charge of
itBthere were just two of us at this jobBI was really his helper. I would take care
of stuff like that that had to be done. It was just a matter of juggling time around
G: You mentioned that you thought the utilities were included in the Flavet [rent] and
that your car was paid off. What other expenses made up your budget at that
A: Primarily food, and what we had, clothing. We did get another car while we were
here. My old car gave up the ghost and I did have to buy another car while we
were here. So we had to make payments on that later on. At first when we
came up here, when [my wife] was not working, [we couldn't afford that]. When
she went to work, that allowed us to be able to do that.
G: You mentioned that one of the deciding factors in your decision to go back to
school was that you noticed your supervisors making more money than you. By
the time you got close to graduation, did you expect that your financial situation
would change, and that you would be making more money, like your
A: Yes, and it did, finally. It wasn=t immediate. Once I got into it and actually the
project I was working on here, they transferred the fellow that did have it, and I
took it over here. That was almost an immediate raise for me right then. Then I
had another one when I went to Kerrville, Texas. Finally, in Washington, I had a
couple of good raises. My wife worked the whole time she was in Washington
G: How did your experience living in Flavet influence your life?
A: l=m not real sure that it did. l=m sure it did at the time. You did what you had to
do there, but my overall life, I have serious doubts that my life would have been
any different had we been living in an apartment paying $500 a month for it. You
understand what I mean. As far as us and our family is concerned, the Flavet
itself had [little] effect on us other than the fact that it gave us a place where we
could be comfortable and pursue the education that I wanted. I doubt seriously
that it had any lasting effect on us.
G: Would you assess your experience living in Flavet as positive or negative?
G: Were there any negative aspects of living there that we haven=t already
A: I don't think so.
G: You=ve already mentioned a few people that I might look up as other people to
interview for this study. Is there anyone else that you can recommend that I
should talk to?
A: I don=t have any idea where some of these people are. The only other person I
can think of that still lives in this town, that went through the Flavets same time
we were there, is a fellow by the name of Robert Esser. He was a nematologist,
and he was in entomology the same time I was. He lived two buildings down
from me, I think. I think that's where he was. Two buildings to the east. He=s
the only one that I can remember that's anywhere around here now. As I say,
we were friendlyy, but we did not have lasting friendships with anyone. I think if
you interviewed more people, you=ll find that's probably the way with most of
them in there.
G: Why do you think that is?
A: I think the point was is that they were tied up in their own families, their own
educations. Their own families, their own situations. They may have felt even a
little uncomfortable going outside of that with Astrangers.@ You can see your
next- door neighbor and you know who he is. They=re friendly and all that. We
were friendly with all our neighbors. We never had a bad word with any of them.
As soon as the people were annoyed with our daughters tricycle, we remedied
that, that's all there was to it.
G: They just told you in passing or they came up?
A: Sure. It wasn=t a complaint, they just told us it sure was noisy up there or
something like that. That=s about it.
G: Is there anything else that I haven=t asked you about that you need to tell me
about the Flavets?
A: No. I think you=ve covered it pretty well. In fact, l=m not much help on some of
this, especially with the politics and the running of the Flavet. l=m sure if you got
the right people, they could give you a lot of information on that. I just don=t
G: When you were talking about the idea that people kind of stayed within their own
family, do you think that's different today?
A: I don=t know. Certainly it was different than when you moved to a neighborhood
like this and you know the people in your immediate neighborhood. lt=s more
like we just came from our daughters. She lives in Livermore, California. We
just got home yesterday at noon. She lives in a condo. They do know the fellow
that lives next door. He=s a carpenter. That=s all she knows. She has never
met anybody in any of the rest of the area. She drives her car into her slot, and
she leaves and goes to work in the morning, and that's it. There=s no
intercourse between the people that live there. Other than if you meet
somebody they=ll wave and say hi. That=s it.
G: Do you think it has to do with the impermanence, say, in Flavet?
A: I think so.
G: Well, thank you.
A: You=re sure welcome.
[End of the interview.]