The Foundation for The Gator N ation An Equal Opportunity Institution Samuel Proctor Oral History Program College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Program Director : Dr. Paul Ortiz Office Manager : Tamarra Jenkins 241 Pugh Hall Digital Humanities Coordinator : Deborah Hendrix PO Box 115215 Gainesville, FL 32611 352 392 7168 35 2 846 1983 Fax The Samuel Proctor Oral History Program (SPOHP) was founded by Dr. Samuel Proctor at the University of Florida in 1967. Its original projects were collections centered around Florida history with the purpose of preserving eyewitness acc ounts of economic, social, political, religious and intellectual life in Florida and the South. In the 45 years since its inception, SPOHP has collected over 5,000 interviews in its archives. Transcribed interviews are available through SPOHP for use by research scholars, students, journalists, and other interested groups. Material is frequently used for theses, dissertations, articles, books, documentaries, museum displays, and a variety of other public uses. As standard oral history practice dictates, S POHP recommends that researchers refer to both the transcript and audio of an interview when conducting their work. A selection of interviews are available online here through the UF Digital Collections and the UF Smathers Library system. Suggested correct ions to transcripts will be reviewed and processed on a case by case basis. Oral history interview t ranscripts available on the UF Digital Collections may be in draft or final format. SPOHP transcribers create interview transcripts by listen ing to the or i ginal oral history interview recording and typing a verbatim d ocument of it. The transcript is written with careful attention to reflect original grammar and word choice of each interviewee; s ubjective or editorial changes are not made to their speech. Th e draft trans cript can also later undergo a final edit to ensure accuracy in spelling and format I nterviewees can also provide their own spelli ng corrections SPOHP transcribers refer to the Merriam progr am specific transcribing style guide, accessible For more information about SPOHP, visit http://oral.history.ufl.edu or call the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program office at 352 392 7168.
TMP 108 Interviewee: Jean Heywood Interviewer: Patrick Daglaris Date: July 10, 2016 D: This is Patrick Daglaris. I 'm here with Ms. Jean He ywood at Gloucester House. And ma'am, if you would just start with your date of birth? H: I was born September the eighth, 1929. D: Okay. And where were you born? H: I was born up in Richmond. D: Okay. H: I'm almost eighty seven, so my memory, it may not be the best. D: Uh huh. You're doing good so far. So was your family from this area? H: Yes, I lived in Wicomico, which was down the county, and I grew up in a my father had a country store in Wicomic o, and I grew up in that store a long time because I loved staying over there with my dad. But I've had such a good life. My mom was very active in community affairs and was quite a leader in a lot of organizations [Inaudible 01:07] We went to the Baptist church, Providence Baptist Church. I was thinking of my life my life has been so full of such interesting people, and I have been so blessed in so many ways. I had a phone call today from a Thai student who lived with us for a year when our daughter was a senior in high school, and she's back in the country teaching in Madison, Wisconsin. She's come back many summers since she was with us. But that was such a nice experience, that we only had one daughter. [Inaudible 1:53] was from
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 2 Thailand, but whenever she comes back to the county she always stays with us, she contacts us. D: That's nice. H: Oh, it was a nice experience. My daughter found out what it was like to have a sister. It took her a while before she realized that she didn't always have to go to t he way she went But when she left it was terrible because we had gotten very attached to somebody else's child. D: We can move this right over here. I think this might be a better area because I can kind of hear the sound coming from there. H: Oh. Well, d o you want me to cut this off? D: Oh, if you don't mind. Okay. H: How about that? D: I think that will be great. H: That will be better. D: Okay. Could you tell me a little bit what were your parents' names? H: My mother was A da Rile y Oliver and my fathe r was Jones Luther Oliver. D: Oliver? H: Uh huh. D: Okay.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 3 H: I don't know I had an older sister who died. I never knew her. But someday maybe I will. Who knows? D: Uh huh. Do you have any other siblings? H: No, unh uh. I graduated from high school down a t Achilles in 1946. We're planning our seventieth high school reunion luncheon. D: Wow. H: So I told the girl who's getting it together, I said, I can't help you since I'm up here, but I can cal l. So I've called most people. W e had twenty nine in the high school class, but over half of them had died. But anyway, we've had fun and we've been together just for lunch many times since then. So we hope to get together on the twenty third of July. Let's see, I taught school in four school divisions. I went to Lon gwood College and taught school in Chesterfield County two years, Newport News two years, York County across the river twelve years, and then I came home and taught down at Abingdon and Achilles. My main interest was third grade, and the last three years I was teaching I was in elementary music, which was a lot of fun because we were in a trailer and we could make all the noise we wanted to and the fun things. But I loved teaching, and I was very lucky. I had some wonderful children and parents. So I unders tand teaching is very difficult today. But anyway, I enjoyed it when I was in it. I was never going to teach school all my life, but I enjoyed my children. D: Do you have any memories of your grandparents or your parents that you'd like to share?
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 4 H: My father's parents lived nearby, and I used to go over there. They lived near the store and I used to go over there a lot. My mother's parents, I never knew that grandfather, and that grandmother lived with us the last several years of her life. My dad had o ne sister and M om was the youngest of five. So I have cousins. One of the cousins, Nan Poin ter, and I were almost like sisters. W e were raised together right often. D: What were your parents like? H: Both of them people people people. Mom would go out and meet people, and she had that kind of a personality. My dad welcomed people and enjoyed people who came to him in the store. But I guess that's why I like people. [Laughter] Since I fell and broke some bones, I've been this is my third trip here to G loucester House. I like being with people here. A lot of them I knew but I didn't kn ow that all of them were here. But we're together. A nother lady and I just finished a puzzle, we're working together. So I went home, I had hoped I'd be able to go home soo n bu t I went home Monday afternoon we had one daughter. I was married in 1952 and we have one daughter, Wendy, who was born the next y ear. We have a duplex there on the creek at Bena, between the Point and Bena Post Office. We live near Sarah's Creek, yo u can see the creek. I realized I can't go home. I'm lo sing the use of my right arm and I've lost the use in my knees. I wish the doctor had a little squirt gun he could shoot some WD 40 or something in my knees, because bones are rubbing together. We'll s ee. I'll do what I can do. D: Coulld you talk a little bit more about the store that your father owned?
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 5 H: Well, it was a little country that had a little bit of everything in it. I loved being over cause I liked to be with people who would come in. A nd D ad would write me notes when I was in college of different things in the, you know, people in the community that I was in. Mom wrote me very often and she was more of the genera l writer, what she had done. I've been very blessed. And I had a wonderfu l husband, and we were married fifty six and a half years, and he passed away in 09 after three open heart surgeries, and he needed a fourth one down at Duke. I'm glad he did linger but he was a people he had the personality of drawing people to him of all ages. I mean, children and adults and, you know, young people. D: Was he from around here, too? H: Yes, he was from a section called Guinea. D: Oh, okay. H: He had one sister who now lives in Poquoson and she's suffering long term effects, memory lo ss es His mom was especially nice, I always introduced her as my mother in love. [Laughter] D: What was his name? Your husband's name? H: Oh, Carlton Wendell Heywood, and so we named her Wendy. So that was before Wendy's fast food became popular. I though t I was one of three Jeans in the class, and I thought if I ever had a child it's going to have a name different from anybody else's. Well, that didn't work. In high school we were always called I was never Jean I was always called by my whole name. I t hought if I ever have
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 6 a child it's going to have a name different from Well, I was wrong. She doesn't seem to mind. She's been a gem. D: What did your husband do for a living? H: Well, many different t hings for a while. But before we were married, he was in the state police here in Virginia, and I guess he stayed with them but five years. We lived up on the Eastern S hore of Virginia, the little prong that comes down that a looking at a map. But that was quite a nice assignment, and then he was transferred to Smithfield, which is not too far from here. And then he got off the force. He liked his job, and people seemed to like him. H e always thought it was more important to give warning s than to write tickets. So that made us a lot of friends up on the Eastern S hore. I went over there and I was walking down the street one day, some man said, oh, you from the western shore? Well, I had never ever heard anybody use that expression before. An d I thought, well, I've come a cross the bay to the Eastern S hore, I guess I am from the western shore. [Laughter] But I never thought about that or heard it. That was an interesting place. D: I was wondering, what was school like growing up around here? H: Well, it was during the war. It happened when I was in high school; I finished in 46. We were blessed with wonderful math and English teachers all four years. The histories and sciences were pitiful, but if they would just get people in the classroom, you know, they had to take that and many of them were well trained. But it was a very poor time but we had a lot of fun. And they had very
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 7 little money to work with. I look at some of my teachers in elementary school, I wonder how they did what they di d for us. You know, we had one ball in the classroom in my first five years at Hayes, which was behind the r escue squad going down 17. We'd hurry up and eat gulp lunch down so we could get out and play ball, play with that one ball. They really did well. We were blessed to heck, with fun We had to create a lot of activities on our own because you didn't have [inaudible 12:16] to work with, whereas children today have so much to work with. D: What were some of the things you did for fun? H: Played gosh, I can't remember. [Laughter] I don't know, we just made up games. I can't think right now. D: And one question, before I forget, how did you and your husband meet? H: Well, there were a group of us who worked during the high school years up here at the Co urthouse We would go to Morgan's Drugs tore and eat lunch. I think h e was working at the Coca Cola plant at that time, and I was working in the school board office. There were many of us that would be together, we'd get there I think I drank many a choco late milkshakes. [Laughter] I still think how good they were. Of course, that drug store is no longer I mean, th e building is there. But we'd meet in there. I guess the only thing we had to do mainly for fun in high school was skating. W e had two rinks in the county. I know every Friday night we always went to the skating rinks. I really don't r emember we had two athletics. W e had basketball in high school. But no, I don't recall any other teams, for the
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 8 boys even. Girls basketball was very standard. We played many different schools around. There was a school up here, and a lot of competition between do wn the county and up the county. D: Was there really? H: Uh huh. But I think in 1953 they built a new high school in where the two schools went together as one. That was fun. We had been promised that we would have it in 1946, but of course it didn't bec ome a reality until later. I think it was 1952. D: So we actually, me and my colleague, we talked to Harvey Morgan this morning actually. H: Oh, really? D: H e took us down Main Street and talked to us about all the buildings and we stopped right where his H: Office? D: Yeah, his store used to be. H: Yes. I'm glad you got to see him because he could give you a lot of information. D: Oh, he pointed at almost every building and told us a history of it. H: s a quaint circle. D: It's real nice. H: The school board office was where the current Botetourt School is now, that was of course, that building was very the office was at the end of that building,
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 9 and then later they moved down let me see. Go around the circle to the right of the circle. But anyway, I don't know, we dated. We met and dated and went to the skating rink [inaudible 15:39] D: So you met at the drug store, you think? H: Yeah, he was three years ahead of me. D: Okay. H: He worked there. His sister and I were real good friends, and I knew she had an older brother but he was away, he was in the navy. So I didn't know him until later. D: What was it like do y ou have experiences in your childhood during the Great Depression or things like that? C ould you talk a little bit what that was like? H: Well, I was blessed because I was an only child at the time, so what we had we always had a plenty to eat. And what w e had didn't have to be divided many ways, like some families. D: Do you remember ever listening to like the Fireside C hats on the radio or anything like that? H: Yeah, I remember. TV didn't become let's see. My first experience with TV was my first year teaching. D: Really? H: Uh huh, back in 1951, 52. I think p eople of today don't realize how much you can do with a little bit. You know, like wasting electricity. The maintenance man
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 10 here, I asked about I keep the light on in the shower at night, that 's my nightlight, I says, should I cut that off for the day, he said, oh, it doesn't really matter, and the water runs and runs and runs. See, we couldn't do that. But we did have running water in our home, which some people didn't at the time. D: Oh, real ly? So you had it though, you remember having it? H: Oh, yeah. D: And where did you live? H: Down the county in Wicomico. D: Okay. H: Right near the store. D: How was Gloucester like during World War II? What do you remember during that time? H: Well, so m any of the younger people were away the younger fellas were away. I don't remember we did have a ferry where the bridge is now. This is the second bridge. My second year of teaching in 52, that bridge was completed, and I came dow n 64 and crossed t he bridge. N ot have to wait on the ferry. Oh, what a wonderful thing that was, because we had to wait in line. Oh, I remember my daddy offered a lady in our community had to go to the hospital for cancer treatments I think, and they didn't have a car. An yway, my daddy volunteered me to take her. Oh, and I remember how hot it was and how she was so sick. Just I said, D addy, before you volunteer me for something else please tell me about it.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 11 But anyway, I was glad I could do that. But going down there to th e hospital in Newport News, because we didn't have this one here. I don't remember how long it was, I don't think she was down there very long, as well as I remember. But coming back it would be hot and waiting in Yorktown in the heat and no air conditioni ng. D: Oh, man. H: My dad had a fan in the store, a big fan. But it didn't oscillate. It was up on the end of the meat counter. [Laughter] And hot, oh my goodness, I could hardly wait to get home and we didn't have a shower, get in the tub. D: Did a lot of the students in high school, did they go into the armed forces? H: Most everybody, when they were old enough. My husband signed up, he had to, at eighteen, and he had been accepted up at Connecticut in the Merchant M arine school. And so his bi rthday was in September and when he came, got the notice to register, and he came up here and, of course, went through that formality, and the man said, well, he would be going into the army. And he told me, he said, you won't get this baby in the army. So we get ho me, and the next day he got his daddy, they went to Newport News and he joined the navy. He was in the navy for a coupl e years. You know, I couldn't [inaudible 20:04] make it. But the s chool that he was accepted to, Merchant Marine A cademy, he couldn't get in till January, and so this man had thought he had him in the army. But I was grateful that he did that. D: When did you get married?
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 12 H: In October of 1952. D: Was that after you graduated high school? H: College. D: Oh, college. A fter college. H: Yeah, college. I had been in college a couple years. D: Okay. What college was it? H: Longwood. It was a state teacher's college at the time, and then later the name was changed to Longwood College. Now it's Longwood University. So I was g rateful five of us from the county went up there together. Four of us finished and one girl left and went in nurse's training in Richmond. So when she finished, she not only had her RN she also had her B.S. degree. But the other four, three of the four got master's degrees. I started mine but I didn't finish it. A couple years. I was t aking master's at William and Mary I only went to William and Mary for those two classes. I went to Hampton Institute, I was the only white one in the class. D: Reall y? H: I knew what the minority was like. It was a small library science, I thought I wanted to get certified in library science. But I went down there one summer, and they were very nice but the classes were small. But life was very different. But I was so grateful at Longwood because one of the group and I roomed together. I made a lot of friends, and people I've written to all these years.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 13 D: W ow. H: But so many of them have died now. But I loved colle ge, n ot the academic part necessarily, I just liked th e fun part. D: Were you a good student? H: A, B student. D: That's not bad. That's pretty good. H: No. Not bad for me. But I had a good time. I was honored one year, two thousand and at homecoming, which I was very, very appreciative of. Very pleased. Be cause I volunteered in a lot of different organizations, and that was why I was honored, I think. D: What did you do after you graduated college? H: Well, I worked at the weapons station for a while, but then we were married in October. So I wasn't over th ere very long. But I was down in the infirmary or something, I didn't have much to do. I had a letter to type, because they said you had to be there six months before you could get a raise. Well, in three months let's see, June, July, August, -no, in l ess time than that I was told to come to personnel office, that I was going to be reassigned. And I had to tell them that I didn't plan on being there very long. I didn't think it was fair to them to give me a raise when I wasn't going to stay. But I wante d to pay for my wedding. I didn't want my mother I didn't want my mother and daddy to do that. Mom made my wedding dress, which was very pretty, satin. One hot summer. She'd stitch it up
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 14 and I'd have to try it on, otherwise that would stick. But it was v ery plain but very pretty, I thought. She spent a lot of time with me playing cards and whatnot, I guess because I didn't have anybody to play with. But one of the games that we played a lot was authors, and in high school English it came back in literatur e, when we were studying literature. Having to give the author of certain works, and I remembered from that card game. So that was pleasant. I don't even know that they have that now. One like that is so different because they, you know, with all the compu ters and technology. I'm a real dodo because I don't they were just trying us when I retired in 89 we had to take a class on computers, just beginning, you know, how to turn it on. But later, of course, it became used in the classroom. But I never did pick up on it. My daughter thinks I'm very anti, but that's al l right. D: So after college, did you come back to Gloucester area? H: Well, just for the summer. Just for that summer. And I worked at the naval weapon station across the river. We were mar rie d in October and I went to the Eastern S hore. D: What brought you back to Gloucester then? H: Oh, well, after he got off the force, state police force, we came back to Gloucester. He sold Fords, he was a Ford salesman. He did well. H e was bald, he got b ald, an d in the wintertime he wore these funny little caps when he worked over in Poquoson with his brother in law, who owned the dealership, and he had inherited it from his father. He made a lot of friends. Well, when he died a
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 15 Catholic priest was on dut y that morning. And he said, tell me what this fella was like, and I looked up and I said, how much time do you have? I said, I could talk about him all day. I said, you know, they make a lot of jokes about car salesman, but he would give people his best o ffer, and sometimes it was part of his commission. And I said, rather than wrangling back and forth, you know, he said, that's the best I can do, and people liked that. They would come and ask for him. Sometimes they didn't remember his name, but sometimes they asked for the man with the funny hat. Anyway, he en joyed work. He was able to work well, later it became just a couple days a week, because the highway got so busy, traffic got to be very heavy. O ne of the fellas that worked in his parts department he said, why do you send Heywood over here? H e comes late, he eats lunch with the boss, and then comes back and sits down and sometimes gets a nap, and we send him out of here by three o'clock to come home. I said, well, as long as he likes it. But he di d very well. We enjoyed life together. We lived down at the Point first, I mean, rented a house for a year and then we bought a house down at the Point, and then we built a duplex in 77. My mom was still living then, so she came and she was at one end, we were at the other. After she passed away, Wendy and B illy built the house next door. Carlton gave them some of the land. They built a pool first and then a garage, or maybe it was a garage and then the pool, and then a house. And t hey had one daughter, Amy, and she h as two little boys So I have two great grandsons. I didn't know God would let me live this long. I enjoy them very muc h, but I don't see them often. T hey live in Crozet which is just outside of Charlottesville.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 16 D: Okay. H: It's almost three hours away from here. But they were down this weekend. Wendy had the sports for the boys this week. My granddaughter is quite accomplished in tax work. What do you call it? D: Auditing? H: Uh huh. Well, she does a lot of it. She has a fairly good job. She went to Virginia Tech and met her husband there. They seem very happy, very well matched, for which I'm grateful. D: When was your daughter born? H: In 53, October, a year later. We were married on the eleventh of October and she was born the tenth of October. D: Wow. H: I told her she was the anniversary present. She said, I don't know why I had to be born in a hospital on the Shore in Nassawadox. I don't know why I had to be born in Nassawadox, I've never learned to spell it. And all the forms a sk fo r place of birth, she said. I said to put two S's and two D's, nobody here will know the difference if that's wrong. D: What was it like teaching did you start teaching on the Eastern S hore? H: No, I started teaching, my roommate and I, in 1950, went to Chesterfield County, outside of Richmond. It was one of the top paying counties in the state, twenty one hundred dollars a year. Anyway, we went there, and she was from
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 17 Chesterfield but another end of the county, because it was a large county. She was so s pecial. We were there two years. I was never going to teach school all my life, but I liked it. Then we w ere married then I went to the S hore. D: I wanted to ask you a couple questions about Main Street. You mentioned already Morgan's Drug Store, and that you'd go there and you had H: Had lunch both of us. D: Did you go both to Morgan's and Gray's? H: Not to Gray's very often. Occasionally. But we always ate lunch over at Morgan's. I go t the same thing eve ry day: a ham sandwich and a chocolate milkshake [Laughter] D: Sounds pretty good. H: Oh, my. D: And when you were a kid, where did your family go to get groceries? H: Well, see, D ad had a grocery store. D: Okay. H: He sold groceries and a lot of other staples, too. It was a little bit of everything. D: What brought you down to Main Street then? Was it the pharmacies or ? H: Coming up, you see, I had to come up north. Well, I had friends up here. But I came up here to work that summer. I mean, those summers four years, three years
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 18 D: You would go s hopping up here, too? H: No, not so much. I wasn't a big shopper. [Laughter] We went over town for clothes over at Newport News. D: Did you ever go to furniture stores like the Tri County Furniture H: No. D: Tucker's store. H: Oh, yeah. That was quite a place, the Tucker store. D: Yeah? H: Oh, my. D: What about it? H: Well, it had a very distinct odor, and I can remember that forever. And you could find any little thing in there you wanted. D: Yeah? H: Uh huh. It just was an odds and ends shop. I think when that was torn down, I believe the school board office was built on part of that property, I think. I worked in there. I know one of my jobs at the school board office was to clean out some files, and I found the contracts of my teachers and how little they made. Two teachers: my first grade teacher and the principal of fifth grade, I mean, of th e school, boarded at home with M om. I wasn't very angelic in my first year of s chool, but they never did tell Mother because she would have killed me.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 19 Because I remember saying she said, you may not have sense enough to learn, but I know you can behave yourself. Behavior was not one of my strong characteristics at t he time. They never did tell M om. But she said, if you get a whooping at school you're going to get anot her one when you get home, and D addy said, amen. So that meant two. Well, I didn't get two whippings. D: Do you remember any of the car dealerships down town? H: No, because they were Oldsmobile people. D: Okay. H: Well, I guess the first one I mean, in my lifetime, Mr. Clemen t s was an Oldsmobile dealer, I believe. I can't remember, I guess I wasn't interested in cars But I started driving early. D ad si gned for me. I've been driving since I was fourteen, which was much too early. That rule didn't stay in effect very long before they found out t hat that wasn't very wise. But D ad signed for me to take groceries up through what we called the neighborhood. P eople would come to the store with a list, walk to the store, and then he would fill it and send them home. And ev ery Friday I'd go around and in the summertime, get several people their groceries and take them up to their home. And I remember lifting, an d a lot of people had hogs then. And milfy which they fed the hogs, one of those big hundred pound sacks, they 'd be on the fender. You know, D addy would have one maybe on the fender, and I remember how heavy it was for me to lift it. It's a wond er I didn' t have hernias early in my life, I didn't. But I wasn't a very good lifter. I was the boy he didn't have. But, you know, I liked it.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 20 D: Do you remember any experiences with like Christmas or Halloween or the holidays as a kid? What you guys would do for tr aditions? H: Oh, Halloween was always a frightful time for me, for some reason. D: Did you ever play tricks anyone or anyone play any tricks on you? H: Not that I can recall. I wasn't very adve nturous. I had gotten very lady like by that time. But Christmas was special A girl across the road from me, in fact, she said we didn't visit back then back then back and forth, but at school I met her in the first grade, I asked her where she lived, and she said next to Jones Oliver's store, which was my dad' s store. I said, I live next door to that, well, I was across the road. I think how stupid that was. But we used to be together. O ften she would come over and stay with me if M ama had night meetings, and I'd help her with her homework because she wasn't a very good student, and especially in math. I would try to help her. I don't know that I did much good. She m arried a fella from Wyoming and then he was a professor, I believe, or became a professor. Then they moved to California, Saint Louis Abisb o, and we still kept in touch. W hen she would come home, you know, I'd always get to see her, those of us t hat grew up together. T here were five of us from Wicomico. Well, she passed away the same year my college roommate did, and another teacher friend from Pennsy lvania [inaudible 36:28] that I liked so well. But I lost three close friends in one year. D: I'm sorry.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 21 H: It was. Every so often my daughter has been trying to clean up my house, going thr ough closets, drawers, and what They had to put new vinyl down in the kitchen, and my desk was in one corner of that den area. She has brought me some more stuff and I'm supposed to go through it, and I've been cu lling some, I don't know why in the world I've saved what I have, but after I retired after Carlton died I didn't stay home much because I volunteered at a lot of pl aces, different organizations, u p here at Wa lter Reed Convalescent Center, o ne day a month it was a sort of sing along type program A nd I was in different organizations, too. Because I didn't like being home alone. D: Do you remember any recipes or anything that your mom used to make? Like food or treats or anything like that? H: She was such a good cook. I learned to, but I didn't know how to cook. In fact, before we were married, she told Car lton, I don't know why you want to marry her, she can't do a thing except drive a car and work a cash register. It wasn't quite that bad. But anyway, I did learn to cook, and we managed. I wasn't the best cook in the world. But she made a wonderful pound c ake, and I did learn to make that. I used to always make one for our funeral director, and she told me one time, cause a lot of pe ople made special cakes for him. David Bristow he's a very prominent person here. He said, Jean, your pound cakes are more l ike my mother's. I used to play for funerals sometimes for him. Now he has people on the staff who play. But he would give me a gift every year at Christmas. I said, David, please don't give me a gift. I said, you know, I haven't after I got so, after Ca rlton, he still gave me a gift. I said, you know, you've got a lot of expenses. I
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 22 said, I appreciate it but I don't want you to keep on doing it He said, I'll decide who I give gifts to. [Laughter] He's very special. He said it was more like his mom's. Th at was all I needed to know b eca use he had everything, you know. W hat do you give somebody that's that blessed ? But he's a mighty fine person. D: Do you remember did you ever go to or hear about the Wagon Wheel or the Stokely H: Yeah. D: Did you ever g o to those places or did you hear about them? H: No, we passed by them, you know, every time coming up to the Courthouse. D: We've talked to some people and app arently there were a lot of big name d people that have gone by there. H: Well, all of us had to go by there because it was on the highway, Wagon Wheel. He was a very respected person [inaudible 39:40] in he started it or he inherited it or what. But it was sort of a high class beer joint. D: What about wasn't th ere a po ol hall on Main Street? D id you ever go to that? H: Unh uh. I didn't know anything about that. D: Okay. H: I was very active at church, and I was an organist for two years. I was active in different parts of ch urch services. I gre w up in the Baptist church but later, when we moved back to the county, we joined the Methodist church, Bethany Methodist down at the Point, and I was in active in that. Well, I was a member of
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 23 the choir forty one years, and twenty of those years I was organist, and I was a jackleg anybody else in the church. I mean, growing up, a lot of us took piano l essons. T a wonderful organist now wh o has a doctorate degree in organ, in this small church. Well, I guess we have about three hundred or so. Maybe more than that. But not many more. We have a lot of young people now, you ng couples, a lot of children w hich is great. Growing up they said, w ell, Jean, you play two Sundays. Well, I played two Sundays while they tried to find somebody else. Two Sundays I volunteered became twenty years later. [Laughter] D: I bet you got better at it though. H: Well, I did. Well, I mean, my life was so full bec au W e have a lot of home had practice, and I wanted it to be as perfect as I could make it. I practiced and then Saturday I had to choose music for the next week, because I had to give that to the office for her to put into the bulletin. And, you know, you had to make decisions. I tried to use th ings that I knew that would tie in with t he sermon and what not. So some of the things I had to learn, hymns and what not, but most of them I kne w. But I practiced as much I could because I wanted it to be as perfect as it could be. D: I have another question. You said your husband was from Guinea, correct? H: Uh huh.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 24 D: of watermen from there. H: Yeah, a lot of watermen. Well, for a while he and another fella had some kind of crab practice, and he worked at the Coca Cola plant. D: Do you know who the H: He had a service station, he and another fella owned a service stat ion up here at the Courthouse. D: Which one? H: D: Was it the Texaco? H: D: What was the name of the other fella? H: Mike Rowe. He also is deceased. They were high s chool classmates. D: Okay. H: They enjoyed it He went to the University of Richmond for a year and took bible, he only went one year. Because the bible professor wanted him to say that that
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 25 l earned a lot about it, and he was a good teacher at Sunday school. But then he studied a lot, he did a lot of research on it. I thought Dr. Cousins handled that very poorly, you know? D: Uh huh. And H: At least he was interested. [Laughter] D: Uh huh. A nd going back to Christmas, I had a question. Do you remember going down Main Street by the Courthouse during Christmastime and seeing all the trees they had out there and the decorations? H: Well, the garden clubs usually decorated every year for a long t ime. And, of course, we went to Thalhimers an d Miller & Rhoads in Richmond. T hey were the big stores with all the decorations, and the store windows were so fascinating. carload o f gals over there and we roamed the stores, and somebody would pay the parking two people would pay the parking ticket. Somebody would treat us all to a round of Cokes. And we walked the stores. So when Christmastime came, I knew where whatever I was goi ng to give my parents and my O ma take me long to Christmas shop. D: either your husband or your childhood or teaching or the Courthouse area? Is
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 26 H: you leave. Nothing that stands out right now. I mean, going to Richmond was q uite a big thing. And e ven when Wendy, of course going to see Santa was always so special up there. One year my mother in law went with me and, of or But anyway, she went, and we got up to Santa, and he said, well, Wendy, how are things down bought her [inaudible 46:13] She was sold and anyway, she told him she wanted. Because I was told you could only ask for two big things. And one big thing, there was a neighbor, a friend of mine, got three big things, a bicycle I thought of that not too long ago. I said, what was the third thing, Joyce, for Christmas? But s he got a watch and a new piano and a bicycle. T bicycle plus little things, games and things. D: here a long time. H: Yeah. Oh, my go so in so many ways. So many new people. Some events have changed, and customs I guess have chang ed. It was a good place to be. W e were always considered sort of a suburb of Newport News. When I taught in York they said, you live across the bridge? You know, take me long to get to work. They made it seem like one girl from Williamsburg, who was teaching with me, asked me one night, PTA night she said, Jean, you
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 27 ved farther away from school than I did. discovered it, you know, even though we still have a toll, thank goodness. But paying for two bridges, and whatever this toll is on this they put on to the bridge in West Point and corner land that they lumped all together. You pay the first bill off, first cost off, but with the second bridge. But my husband and Francis, a friend a cousin up here, used to go down the Point when the second bridge was being built. And, of course, a lot of it had to be built according to the tides a nd the wind, the weather. They sat in Carlton had a chair in the back of a pickup truck, and he sat there and watched all that. Oh, my. D: Did he have an accent, like a Guinea accent? H: people. It became part of her speech, and her mother got after her. But when I went to Achilles in the sixth grade, because we just had eleven years, six through eleven. Thes e two girls were down there chatting, and I never heard anybody talk be way into the next paragraph. But they slowed down and intermarried, and people dow D: Yeah, we talked to someone from there, actually, just a couple hours ago. H: Oh, really?
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 28 D: Do you know J.C. West? H: D: from there. They live just down the street now. H: Oh, really? D: Yeah, they live H: Because I was thinking his family grew up in Tide m ill. D: ill. H: t Guinea. D: accent. But you know his family? H: Oh, yeah. Uh lunch. D: Really? H: U ntil I came up here. J.C.'s mother Alice D: Yeah. He was a big waterman, him and his dad. H: Yeah. His dad has passed away. No, way down in Guinea, beyond the school. D: Okay. H: The Union Church and the school. And there's an island over there, and they really have [inaudible 50:26] I didn't know many people in Guinea.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 29 D: And we were talking to ano ther couple yesterday, the Corr s, do you know them? H: Jean Corr and Harry? D: Uh huh. H: Oh, yes. D: Yeah, we were talking to them on their farm. They have a beautiful farm. H: Her mother is here. S he's a 101. D: Is it Leola? H: Leola. D: We haven't talked to her yet, but we've been looking for her. H: Is that right? D: Uh huh. She told us she's still sharp. H: Oh, yeah. She's a little deaf so you have to be on the right side of her. One side is better than the other. But she'll be 102 on October. D: They said they were thinking of assisted living but they were waiting because they don't want to move in with their parents again. [Laughter] H: Well, Harry has h ad a lot of health problems. I thi nk he had a stroke but I'm not sure. D: We interviewed both of them yesterday.
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 30 H: Did you? D: They're real nice. She gave us your name actually, that's how we're here. H: Oh, really? D: We're talking to you and we're talking to Bessie Emory. H: Oh, yeah? [ L aughter] She's a character. She just come in here. She's ninety six and is very sharp. She was Commissioner of R evenue for twenty seven years, I think. So she knows a lot of family names. There was a man at our table, when she first came, that was from Ne w Jersey or something He had a wheelchair with the legs extended, he had some kind of blood tumor s on his legs or something. He's really a nice fella. Not very old, did n't have any people down here. But h e was very interested in Gloucester history. He wou ld ask something, well, Bessie would read all this stuff off ab out Rosewell, and, you know, a lot of these other things. Well, he was fascinated. But he moved out on his own supposedly, and he gave three we were talking about that at lunch today. He gave three of us his phone number. One lady, he wanted her to come to see him, he gave her his address, and we haven't heard a word from him. He hasn't contacted anybody. It's quite a mystery. So we don't know whether things didn't work out as he had hoped for I don't know how you can manage without help. One of the aids here told me she had offered to take him to Walma rt and to the drugstore and bank and those kinds of things. And he was really friendly with a daughter of another lady who was at our table bef ore Bessie came. She hasn't
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 31 been here very long. She went to church this morning. She never comes to breakfast on Sundays. I often had been but I didn't go today. D: Another one of us that I'm with, she's interviewing her right now. They might just be fin ishing up H: Oh, really? D: Yeah. H: Oh, my goodness gracious. D: So we're trying to talk to everyone. Is there anything else you'd like to add? H: I can't think of a thing. And tell me your name again? D: s Patrick. H: Patrick. D: Uh huh. Thank y ou so much for letting me come here and talk with you. H: Well, I'm sorry that I'm not real clear. D: No, you did a great job. You told me a lot of stories. H: [Laughter] Well, my life has been so blessed. I was lying in bed the other night thinking how blessed I have been in my lifetime. I'll be eighty seven in September, I'll have had good health until about three years ago when I started falling and breaking bones and th ings. But I have met some of the most interesting people. Anyways, I think back about them, in different areas, different
TMP 108; He ywood; Page 32 types of people. Each is such touched my life in a special way, and I'm grateful. Very, very grateful. D: That sounds like a great way to end it. [Laughter] [End of interview] Transcribed by: Patrick Daglaris, July 25, 2016 Audit edited by: Jessica Taylor, August 6, 2016 Final edited by: Patrick Daglaris, October 21, 2016
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