Title: Interview with Ed Chavis (October 12, 1972)
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00007030/00001
 Material Information
Title: Interview with Ed Chavis (October 12, 1972)
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Publication Date: October 12, 1972
Spatial Coverage: Lumbee County (Fla.)
Funding: This text has been transcribed from an audio or video oral history. Digitization was funded by a gift from Caleb J. and Michele B. Grimes.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00007030
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Samuel Proctor Oral History Program, Department of History, University of Florida
Holding Location: This interview is part of the 'Lumbee County' collection of interviews held by the Samuel Proctor Oral History Program of the Department of History at the University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: LUM 37A

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Full Text


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

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
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For all other permissions and requests, contact the
the University of Florida

LUM 37 A
October 12, 1972
Mr. Ed Chavis
Lew Bqton--interviewer

B: This is October 12, 1972. I am Lew Barton, recording for the Doris

Duke Foundation American Indian Oral History Program. We are new

in the OffiCe ofheq Caro_ ia Indian Voic in Pemborke, North earolina.

And with me is Mr. Ed Chavis, who is president of the Lumbee Student

Organization on the campus of Pembroki University, Mr. Chavis, I'm

very sorry that um, our first tape fouled up on us there. Um, I hope

this is not too unconvienient. Would you tell us due to the -

C I advancement of Technology and Science in the world,

everything doesn't wor And your full name is Ed Chavis?

C: Ed Kenneth Chavis.

B: Ed Kenneth Chavis. And you're the son of ..

C: James Lee Chavis.

B: Um huh how old are you?

C: Twenty one and -a senior at PSU.

B: Um huh and you are this year you are president of the

Lumbee Student Organization on campus. Ur, last year urn, there were

some things you made about urn, urn, this organization being s-ea -

an.y on campus. I have to ask you about that. Now you think it's

more acceptable this year than it was last year?

C: Yes I feel it's lots more acceptaBle because um, the administration

is right now they aes -tl the 4taee Student Organization

is there to stay. It's there to stay for a long time. It's gon'..

It's gonna progress, it's not gonna regress now.

B: Um huh .

LUM 37 A Page 2

C: because there's so many programs that we're initiating.

B: Um huh ..

C: And um, they've come to see it as being more or less, an Indian

cultural organization more or less than a segregationist organization.

B: Um 1juh. .and you think the reason they found on it the

administration found on it originally was because they misconscrewed

it's purpose and thought it was a segrationist organization rather

than a cultural one?

C: Well. the association, it's major purpose is to farther advance

or makd knowNthe Lumbee heritage which is. which is in our

preamble. we might say preamble to our constitution is to make

known the Lumbee Aeritagi.

B: Um huh .

C: Well, in order to make this known, we're planning on initiating a

program whereby we'll be sponsoring a a store or right. .

not right at.the moment, but I feel that within a year, if this thing

goes ( OV/t 1- \) and everyone participates as they seem to be

going, that we will have a a good tore. And we can um, have

a full time employee where sonconoe'll be sending things in the .

all the time and we're have a small place of business. Whereas the

money we'll be using in I feel can be going to the ur, an

Indian Scholarship fund.

B: Right.

C: And um, and whereby the Lumbee students could al'o use the money to

go on ur, expeditions like the un, like an Indian Pow-Wow, or like

decide to go to, like to A5 1 J I.B6envention in un,

in Florida this weekend or next weekend? somewhere like that.

It's next weekend.

B: Um huh ...

LUM 37 A Page 3

And we'r e h. we could go there, you know, if we had the

money. But see, right now we're going through the process of

getting capital.-, oh yeah! We're planning on having a Lumbee

Calendar making a Lumbee Calendar. We've got about. .. I

know it's about six of us that have um, planned on doing a lot of

research and get as many dates as possible for the Lumbee Calendar.

And, every when we get these things going there will be a great

asset, not only to the Lumbee Student Association, to let people

know that there is a Student associationn and thAs association is here

to stay. And this association is planning on, not only bettering

itself but also bettering the community. and the institution.

B: Could you tell us a little something, as you did a while ago um,

about the total enrollment and the number of students by race? Well,

thts would be an estimate I would imagine.

C: There's there's almost two thousand students on campus. There's

something like fifty maybe seventy five less than two thousand or

something like that. And there's approximately between two hundred

and fifty and three hundred Indians and about a hundred Blacks. And

well I feel that the Blacks Blacks areccl iming that only

the real group that's discriminated against because they're Black.

They're the ones that run almost run the athletic department.

And yet, they're the ver. they're at the ver .almost you might

say at the very bottom because there s so few of them. We have only

one Indian pertain um, participating in Any types of sports

event at the moment which is um, Victor Hill. He runs track he

runs track and cross country.

B: Um huh .

C: And which he .. .and I imaginee in another year he could be a national


Page 4

B: Um huh .he's a great star isn't he?

C: He's one of he's one of the best they have at PSU and PSU is

known to dominate in track especially in North Carolina.

B: Um huh well that's great. UI, do you think anything is dnne to

discourage Blacks and Indians from enrolling anif ey -----

maybe um .

C: Well not not right out. you know, coming right out and telling

'em you know. But I feel that there is a great _isc__mi_ because

there are many kids that could go to college and don't have the don't

have the financial things or money to go to college.

B: Um huh .

C: There is there are scholarships offered but many of 'em. .. many of

the scholarships that I've seen that people have got had been White people that

have gotten all these scholarships except for the athletic scholarships which

most of them go to Blacks.

B: Um huh .

C: The um. Indians have no almost no scholarships whatsoever. They get

financial aid. They have to work on campus and this and they're doing work"

study programs. But as far as a downright scholarship for PSU to an Indian

student for being an Indian student that wants to g o the University and

don't have the money, I don't. I haven't heard of one yet. But if we can

get our program initiated, the Lumbee Student Association, there will be

at least one scholarship offered to an Indian student.

B: Um huh well I certainly hope that um, that this is done. Um, do you

know whether any efforts are being made um, by the administration to recruit

Indian students or Black students?
C: Well.... the ..AS many people know that there'sis a hundred and fifty thousand

dollars appropriated to Pembroke State University this year because there was

Page 5

a high enrollment of um, Indians in the University. Which .in

other words two million dollars offered all over the United States

that was given at fifteen different institutions--------. But as far

as the money being appropriated for. .for Indians, it hasn't. hasn't

reached us as of yet. And in my it is to my opinion, I don't believe

it will.

B: Well that's too bad. Is this um, is this the program generally referred

to as Title Three Program?

C: Yes it sure is.

B: And it does have um, specifications which um favor the use of it for

the Indians.

C: For .. well the Indian the money is appropriated forth- ks-auae the

Indians are there. It isn't necessarily funded to the Indians.-fir&F but

if the money is funded because the Indians are there and because the need. .

because the Indians need the money, I don't see why. many of people in

my um, had the same opinion, andkmoney could not be appropriated for

such things as um, the Indians'Studies Program or a Scholarship Program or

just a plain Scholarship Program for all Indians$say whereby they would pay

the University say maybe, knock off five or ten dollars out of the tuition

B: Um huh .

C: And um, pay it out of this money. for the Indian.

B: Do you know of any Indians students who are there on o reagn Foundation Grants

um, Freilgn Foundation Scholarships?

C: Not not as I know of.

B: Um huh .um, I do know that the Fei4egn Foundation does this s&rt of thing

and you don't know whether the Administration seeks Eza4gn Foundation Aid

for Indian Students or Black students?

Page 6

C: No I haven't ... I. haven't the slightest idea.

B: And um, Mr. Chavis, as president of the Lumbee Student Organization, have

you noticed anything um, which didn't seem to be on the up and up because

of um, the Student Organization or because um, you're a member)or other

members of it?

C: Well, the students on campus, the Lumbee Students on campus, they have a

they have a feeling where they don't want to be associated with White

people, many of 'em don't. And they can .they conglomerate in their

own little groups and talk and whatever. But they haven't they haven't

got the guts %"r they're afraid of what or something to become members

of the Lumbee Student Association because I think they feel it's a .

it's an associational and organization that that depicts Lumbees and

they don't want to be called, you know, out right and you know, if somebody

comes up to them and say well,you're Lumbee aren't you. They don't want to be

did. they don;t want to be done like that, because they still feel the

way many of our parents and grandparents feel because you know, that was a .
nA A A /;k dA r +
almost a-----------------------you know, you ain't .. .whatever.

B: Um huh .

C: And, they. they're afraid because they don;t want to be associated with the

Lumbee name. They don;t want to be associated with any Indian name besides

Indian. They might like to be called Indian, you know. or someone

just come up you know, and say hey brother or something like this. But yet

they just. .. they can't become interested in the organization or become

members of it because they're afraid of it.

B: Um huh well with the Indians strictly in the minority and the Blacks strictly

in the minority um euen more than the Indians, then in the midst of an

atmosphere.. social atmosphere like this, um, sometmesAtls. does. ..

do you seem to fe&l pressures that aren't overt or sense an attitude or

Page 7

something that might discourage this do you think?

C: Um .to discourage the .'

B: membership an the Lumbee Student Organization.

C: Well, I think that many of 'em feel that there's a. it's almost

"a social circle. you know, that the Lumbee Student Organization is almost

"a social circle because many of the members that ha. that are in it

now, were members when it was f&rst started.

B: um huh .

C: you know, and they can um, they come in together you know, and that's it.

Those are just a few chosen ones. But we try to reach everyone. We try to

tell everyone to come, you know, so it won't it won;t look like you

know, it's only a special group of people you know.

B: Um huh .

C: ... that get together because In Lumbees are the most talented Indians

I believe, that there are.

B: Um huh .

C: They have such a variety. We have people that. .. we have great parties,

we have great diners, we have great------------we have um, just gobs

and gobs of people that can do gobs and gobs of things.

B: Um huh .

C: If we can get all of these people together in the Lumbee Student Association

Then we could get things done and get'em dome now. I feel that the Lumbee

Student Association will be a big power in the future. will be a big power

because they right now this is the palace, here in the University,

and in high school are where our leaders are borm. .. our Indian leaders

are born. And without something like this we can't bet 'em. we can't

get 'em out. we can't get tie real people out. The people that need

it, the people that the people that um, will be the future leaders.

Page 8

B: Well does the organization um, it's um. it's opened byq-ti groups as wellA.

Lumbees, right?

C: Oh sure. it's anyone the only stipulation in becoming a member

is that you come to three consecutive meetings and that shouldn't be too hard

to do because we meet every other. first and third wednesday nights of

the month.

B: Um huh it seems we have lots of trouble ever getting the um, American

Indians Studies foup and on after a lot of pressure and the press and so

forth I think it's been planned for several years. It's finally got off
W -re well-
the ground this year. UM, have you observed some of the classes 4ES

attended or not?

C: Um, classes, I believe the classes in in the history of the Americha

Indians, which is um, Mr.-- -------------- teaches the class, is the most

attended class on campus.

B: Oh, that's great.

C: I believe it is because there's not more than three absent in each meeting.

And um, we have in our class there's about fifteen, fifteen Indians in the

class and the rest White. There's about forty in the class. thirty or

forty in the class. It's a big-sized class.

B: Mr. --- -----is Caucasian, isn't he?

C: Yes he is.

B: Um huh .um, I just asked you that as a matter of information and um. .

and we have a Lumbee Indian um, professor who teaches also.

C: He teaches um, he's Mr. ---------- teaches um,

um he'll becoming in the class that I'm attending is the History

od American Indian, is um being taught jointly by, um, Mr. ---- ----

and um, Mr. ------ -------. Mr. ---------- be coming in next

week starting monday, two weeksin teaching Lumbee History. for two weeks.

Page 9

And um, he teach he has two classes I think it's two classes,

himself of about of American Indians.

B: Do you know whether they recruit any local --- -- in these classes

to help --ir------------?

C: Um, yes. I think Mr. um, Mr. were bringing in different people

to um, speak about Lumbee History. But and in in and in the

American History class, we havd um, for instance, we've already had Mr. George

Aisle from um, Cherokee to come and speak about the Cherokees. And we

have um, tomorrow we have a Mr. Kickingbird to come in to us. I don't

know what tribe he's from. .

B: Um huh .

C: But we they're not the only ones that need to teach the class.

We have um. we also have these people coming in from out outside

you know, along with the class.

B: Um, it seems to me that wee-poer between PSU which was originally

chartered by the Lumbee Indians and that of the Lumbee Indian Community

is that a low ebb. Um, this is just an observation of mine. Um, do you

have any comments along this line? I mean have you observed anything um,

which would indicate that I'm right or wrong. I shouldn't've phrased

the question this way. I really it sounded like a loaded question but

but it wasn't menat to be.

C: Well. .in in many cases there is almost open hostility toward the campus

from the community. But as far as viewing it as a whole, I feel that in the

near future, by help of the Lumbee Indian Student Association, it will be. .

that it the community and the University "11 be getting together on a lot

more things. I THink I think the Lumbee Student Association has finally

awaken. They have finally come to light and sean that, you know, without .

Page 10

without some connection between the community and the University that it's

gonna be, excuse me, open hostility unti' it is.

B: Um huh .

C: And that the Lumbee Student Association will play a major roll in helping

the tie between them. Because we have, we do want we do want people in

the community to become members of the or. association. We do want

to go cut in the community to help people know about Lumbee Student

Association and PSU Campus. we want 'em to know the good parts and the bad

part. We want the campus to know about the good parts of the community and

the bad parts of the community. things to avoid and thing to initiate.

B:i Um, I remember a letter to the editor of a- Roaoe e which was published a few

months ago by a Mr. James M. Locklear, I believe, I'm not sure. But in this

he says that this writers charge that um, in this state University there was
um, a white island in a sea of Indians and it was building it was building up

diketo aji4s the Indians out. You have any comment on that?
II is II
C: Well, a white island I'd say and then the community of Indians um, a sea of

Indians ... that sounds like a pretty good analogy alright. But but

the um, as far as the wall I think the wall is tearing down little

by little. Yo]know I've heard I heard like many of the people have

looked toward the President or the Chancelor now of the University as being um,

"White Indians". um. .

B: Where some people say -

C: ght...................

B: Red on the outside and white on the inside.

C: Right. and and in many cases he has shown things like this, but/as

far as the people being against the University. I don't they're against the

University or him. Only on many of his ideas. There's been a rumor or whatever,

a petition I've heard, that was on Governorq-- ---- ---c----desk that Mr.Jones,

Page 11

or Dr. Jones be removed from his office. But I don't think the peoplesare

gonna stand for it, because from the things he's done, he has helped

the University in a lot of instances. .

B: btowthiespecially .

C: Right, especially in growth. And he has helped the uni he has helped the

community too because there has been a lot of people coming in and a lot of

these people has to buy things from the town. They have to do these things.

So, he has helped the town in that respect. And I don't I feel that the
,-eal' y
people are gonaa rapst behind him in his cause. 'Cause he isn't every-

body isn't all bad. .

B: Right, that's true, and the only person who makes no mistakes, someone said, is

a person who doesn't do anything. .

C: That's true .

B: It's human to make mistakes.

C: In that respect, he's made a mistake by not doing anything too. You NP't say

that he's the only one that's not making mistakes.

B: Yeah .. um- well, um, I personally h0-o-- a grudge against

anybody, and I hope um, I shouldn't even be injecting this, but I hope nobody

does. I I think we all would like to see better ------ -& L between thw

University and the community. Now how do you feel about um, entrance exams?

You think .

C: I think they should be done away with. An entrance exam that doesn't

prove a thing. The entranceeexams 2 the SAT is geared for a middle class
C la,
White girl. If you;re a middle cale-s White girl, you've got nothing. .you

got it's easy. it's plain easy simple to get in any University that

you want to#. But if you're not Pembroke being pembroke, Robeson County

being Robeeson County, being prioominately Indian, we haven't had the

facilities that the average middle class White girl has.

Page 12

B: Um huh .

C: And therefore it's gonna be harder and we have to strive harder and and

in many instances there's it's been proven that kids kids that

did not pass the SAT and went into the college on the COP. program, which

was the College Oppurtunity Program, they went in on this program and. .

they were = l---- students, tey were A students, they got for

regular grades#, this .tha tha that just cancels the SAT

right there. .. t shows its nothing.

3: Um huh This COP program, how does this operate?

C: Well, you go in you go in um .you're. you start in the University

generally during the summer or you can start in the fall and if you just maintain'

a "C" average for the first semester you get off COP and you're on your own.

B: Um huh You're an acceptance on trial?

C: Right. all you have to do is make a C for the first semester and you'll

be on your own.

B: Um huh .

C: But you have to maintain. if you get on a C average. if you get below

a C average, you know, they're gon' warn you and the next semester you'll have to

make a C average. But you only on your first start you get this one chance

to make a C average the first semester and if you don't make a C average that

semester you;re out.

B: Um huh How many hours are you required to take during the first semester

at the first of the Freshman year?

C: YOu .well you have to take at least twelve hours tbe a full time student,

which is generally four classes.

B: Um do you personally know any Lumbee Indians that you feel should be in

college but aren't because ,they um, oh failed the test or something?

C: Um Yes I know quite a few that could be in college because they um, they

Page 13

couldn't um, they couldn't pass the test. Many of 'em have gone to institutions

like um, Roberson Tech., only because they couldn't pas this a dumb

entrance exam.

B: Well, the National Education Association studied that question last year, the

SAT test and things of this nature. I don't know what they're decisions were,

but um, we don't know whether they have been modified any in a sense then do you?

C: I .. .I I do believe that the University will eventually do qway with

'em. I hope they do.

B: Umhuh. -if enough pressure builds, anyway.

C: To the interest of not only the community byt other Indians every where and

Blacks as well and Whites.

B: Well it's um, it's not an Indian institution anymore is it?

C: No. It's a it's a it's not a Indian Institution because, well Indians

don't run it for say and the um, the majority of the people there are White,

B: Do you think um, Indians have um, an equal opportunity in the staff. the

teaching staff and in the administrationO?

Cz No I don't think so, because I've known tfi quite a few quite a few

Indians that have applied .. applied at PSU for positions and didn't get

the position that they applied for. And it wasn't because they atua'L .ua

quallified. Many Lve .Many ',ve gone and taught somewhere else and had

Masters and even Doctors degrees. .

B: Um huh .

C: and have come back and asked for a jobLnd were turned down, and it want

because the place wasn't J-- ----, the place wan't vacant, it wasn't vacant

but yet they were better qualified that the person that was at the um, position

at the time.

B: Um huh .. Um, so you think um, that Indians are sometimes discriminated against

in employment?

C; In their own institution.

Page 14

B: That's too bad, isn't it? Um, I I know if um, ... is there anything you think

that the student organization could do or or, are Indian students generally

afraid to say anything or do anything?

C: Well, we aren't afraid to talk amongst ourselves. But I can like last night

in our meeting all we talked about for an hour I imagine was amny of

the injustices that are going on. Like for instance, a hundred and fifty thousand

dollars, and where is it going. And um, there's a smaller thing. .. like many

we don't many of the students commute, so we don't have um, excess to

many things that the students on campus do. For instame, in the Student Union

there's um.. it's completely dominated by White people. I mean .

excuse me White people get to play the games and they get to to sit

around in lounge chairs, they get to .they get all the lounge chairs mainly to

watch the TV, you know, and all that stuff. But many In well, they .

when they go in the morning, the White people are there, you know, and you don't

have anywhere to sit down. So, you only get to do the only thing you can do

is walk through and get a coke and comeback out.

B: Um huh .

C: There's not anyplace for n ne else.

B: Um huh and um, did does what kind of psychological feeling does

this give a student do you think I mean an Indian student?

C: To give well, you can just see it you can see it in most of the Indian

students eyes. Youknow,, like when they walk through there,you know, they sort

of glance over the table, you know and say wow, you sure would like to sit down

and at least, you know enjoy my coke or something, you know, and you know, maybe

converse. But when one or two comes in, you know, they're not going up to a table

full of White people, you know, and just sit do-n and start talking or whatever,

They're gonna they're just gonna keep on truckin' because they don't .

they don't feel welcome, they don't feel welcome and the White people don't want

Page 15

'em there anyway.

B: Do you know whether um, there .were there any incidents of um,you

know of AeckiC in Indian students or anything oof this nature?

C: They wouldn't do it.

B: They wouldn't dare?

C: They wouldn't dare do it.
B: Because of tHe'Community there?

C: Because of the Indian community and the Indians period, there. Well many people

on campus here the people the dominating force on campus are students

tI live here in Robefson County. The White students from Roberson County area.

That is the dominating force, they they control just about everything on the

campus. So therefore, you know, they know about the Lumbees. They know they

know what it is. They try to keep 'em down, but yet they don't come out, you know,

and you know, say things to 'em, you know that will really, you know, make 'em mad

or something because they know about the Lumbees. They know they are mean people.

They know they're mean. The people that are easiest to get along with on campus,

the nicer people you might say, are the Yankees. are the people from up north.

B: Northern people are generally easier. .

C: They're easier to getalong with because they they've been taught, most of 'em,

you know that um, you know, that Indian people are human, you know or rt -S i

and that, you know, they're just like anyone else. And they're really thrilled,

you know, to be able to just meet an Indian. Just to know, you know, be able to

shake hands with himand say well, I know .. I know Ed Chavis, you know. Most

of 'em are really thrilled but the people around here, you know they've been .

they. ::. we've been subjigateted to them. We've been subservient to them for the

last hundred years.

B: Um huh .

C: And they still want us to be subservient to 'em. But they're not gon' come out and

tell us to do it,

Page 16

B: Um huh and do you think all this is going to change?

C: Well, maybe someday it will. I don't know in the near future and the only

way you can get to change it is to get all the White people from right

around here and send 'em somewhere else to school.

B: Um, did not the um, Lumbee Student Organization support Old Maine, in

the drive to save Old Maine?

C: Right we did. We um, we supported Mrs. um, Mrs. Locklear Janie Manor

Locklear in it.

B: Um hhh. .

C: In efforts to save Old Maine.

B: And um, you didn't you didn't get um, criticises by anyone on campus

for this or ostracises maybe or .. .?

C: Well there were. there were a few people who criticised us you know,just

simply because, you know, like um, Dr. Jones was our President you know, and

all this. But we looked at it from the point of view that the Univeristy was

our University and um, we have as much to say about it as Dr. Jones.

B: Um huh and ye ere rf/ -.lTt, -then that

we should follow him, that the students should blindly follow him. .

C: Right .

B: What ever his decision. simply because he is tbe a Lumbee.

C: Right .. and he being head of the Univ&rsity, too.

B: Um huh .

C: But we being Lumbee students and many of us and knowing that our parents

have taught known told us tole the um, tales or the tolls

or whatever they went through. in order to get Old Maine.

B: Um huh .

C: And um, we just couldn't se it being given up.

B: Some of the White students on campus on one occasion threatened um,

Page 17

as I remember, I was prevering the story in the Newsapaerand um, they

made some statement about threatening to take sledge hammers and go out theee

and tear down Old Maine.

C: That was a bunch of Bull. .

B: You don't think that they would have actually done this do you ?

C: No they couldn't do it. They know I mean, they really know, they

really knew about the people. They know that the people around here wouldn't

stand for something like that. And they they know the Lumbee students

on campus wouldn't stand for something like that ...They couldn't if

an Indian student on campus was really discriminated against in a point that

he was downright kicked or something by White people, it'd be almost a.

a -/ti Jtiot or something.

B: Um huh well I as a writer um, have been charged with setting off the
rI I,
whole Save Old Main# movement with an article called the De-Indianzation

article. Are you. do remember reading such an article?

C: I I remember something about it, yes.

B: Um do you think there were unfair. .CAIQU t Z

4ta >- i I< really was raised questions that

that I encountered on campus. I simply jotted them down and then recorded

the mass questions found on campus. And the phrase itself of the De-Indianzation

of Pembrose State University, I got from a student on campus. I've been

given credit for coining a new name or a new word, when actually I got that

from one of the students, so I don't deserve that credit. But um .

C: There .. there was a you might say, an De-Indianzation.on campus

unt&l the Save Old Maing Movement came. After it started the people. the

Indians on campus, many of 'em, like for instance, the Lumbee Student Association,

we did become to realize. .. we did come to realize you know, that we were

Indians and that we were. we were what we were. You know we can't.. .

we can't be somebody else.

Page 18

B; Right .

C: Because we've not been we can't you know, God made White

people and God made Indians and God made Black people. .. and he gave

them their own special cultures.

B: Um huh .

C: You know and um, you can't each person has his own culture

and you can't just come up and take an Indian and make him White, you can't

take a Black and make him Indian, you can't take a Black and make him

White, and you can't take a White and make him Black or' Indian.

B: Right. .

C: So, that's that's just it. The people. .. the Indians have come

to realize that we are Indians and we can't we can't be anything

else but Indians.
B: Well, I I certainly hope that we're able to establish better reper

between the community and between, um, the University. But do you think

the burden of bridging that gap, um, which we both admit exists, do you

think this burden of bridging this gap is equally shared by the Community

and PSU or if there are things specific things that PSU could and

should do to bridge it?

C: Well, I think it's a two way street. I for myself, I'm gonna take it

on the Lumbee Student Association to do everything we can to bridge the


B: Um huh .

C: But there has to be well like I said it's a two way street. We

have to give and they have to give. Students. PSU has to give in

some and the community has to give in some.

B: Um huh .Know our people as you do and being one of them, do you think

the Indians. the Indian community is going to relent or soften up

um, or give or you know. .anytime soon?

Page 19

C: Anytime soon, it's hard to say. It's reilly hard to say.

B: Um huh .it'll just be a guess anyway wouldn't it?

C: Yeah it would. But I feel that maybe someday you know. I"m a

idealist. I have to I have to I'm up here I'm way

up here you know. I'm really high, you know. I'm what people say

about Indians. Um, someday you know, we can may live in harmony. It's

hard to say when. It may be in the next five months. It may be in the

next five hundred years, but I believe that someday there will be harmony


B: How many do you know how many Indian Professors there are at PSU?

C: There's about. there's no more than five.

B: At the most?

C: No more than five.

B: Um huh. .Do do you know how many there are in all?

C: There's over a hundred.

B: Um huh .How 'bout Black professors. Do you have any Black .

C: There isn't any Black Professors. .

B: No Black professors at all?

C: None at all. The only Blacks that are employed on campus to my knowledge

um, are two in the library and one on maintenance.

B: Um huh do you think maybe um. .

C: Oh, and Dr. Jones's maid.

B: Do you think maybe the Inidans and Blacks could join forces in the county

and effect some changes in this direction?

C: I do believe. The Indians and the Blacks they would get together in

the in the in the county. They could change the whole county situ-

ation, cause they have .

B:: So you think they should?

Page 20

C: Yes. I do believe they should. Because they can't, the blacks can't

the Blacks can't so anything by themselves 'cause they'll be in

the minority.

B: Um huh .

C: The White people are in the majority when you come and divide the groups

into thEee groups. But when put the Black and the Indian together, we are

in the majority.

B: Um huh .

C: and we can rule this county. But in many instances the Indian has

S. have um, relied on the Black and the Black -* -_ come through and

the Black have relied on the Indians and many times the Indians came through.

and yet there were times that we didn't.

B: Um huh .

C: So, I believe I believe in the Indian as being a suspicious person.

B: Um huh .

C: He is extremely a suspicious person. Like, I know many times when someone

saw us going up the, what you might say, social ladder or the political

ladder of success, or whatever. Then many Indians would start looking
at us and saying, well, you know he's got to be doing something underhand4

he's got to be doing something White, you know because he jus. can't

be doing this thing, you know. Cause look-at me man, I'm still down here

on the bottom, you know, and I'm being honest. Yeah they just can't

see. they can't perceive that this someone. that someone has got

the ability to just go up and up and can't. .. and. .that what they. .

They just keep trying to brigg 'em down. Whereas, if they would rally

behind this person there's. there's limitless. limitless possibilities

for, um, for his people and for himself.

R: Right. Um, do you think that maybe these ideas may be planted in their

Page 21

minds by politicians and so on?

C: Could be. It could be. But in my politicians yes. But I have noticed

that even when Indians wasn't involved in politick. Even Indians from

old, they've always been suspicious ofeach other.

B: Um huh .

C: They many .

B: In other words they figure that if the guy is um, rising through the help

of the white people, then he must be doing something to help the white people

off sort of secretly.

C: Yeah in other words it I don't believe, I don't thifik that

they can believe that he can rise just because of himself and his people.

B: Um huh because he he's a Lumbee to begin with.

C: Right. And that there are people that I know, that can rise simply because

people can if we could unite .if ye could unite and put

in people, excuse me. in our own in our own county, put 'em

in county positions, these people can nominage other people to go to district

positions. If these district positions, they cna go to state positions,

and from state positions they can go to congressional divisions and from

there they can go to national. But I still believe that I still

believe in this small community we might one day have a president.

B: Um huh .It's possible. Do you think there"s any resentment among um,

the students toward people who have been appointed from among the Indians

they you know, in high office like um, ey Blue is um, commissioner

of Indian Affairs appointed by President Nixon. Um, like Tom Oxendine who

is head of the Department of Information Bureau of Indian Affairs and um,

a number of other people who are um, in Washington. So you think there is

some resentment?

C: Definitely. I've heard it myself. you know like, you know you hear things

like, you know, Bratney Blue think he's so much, you know something like

Page 22

this, you know. He's got up there with his White people man, and he's

up there. You know, he's forgot all about us down here. We ain't

nothing now and um, stuff like that.

B: Do you hear this among the Indian students or White students?

C: You hear it among the Indians.

B: Um huh .

C: I mean, well,not among the Indian students you hear more or less
among the Indian people.

B: Yeah .

C: You hear it among them, because the Indian. .the younger Indians

have begun to realize they've come into themselves and they're gonna

come through. But if we can get the older people to realize, you know,

realize the mistakes, like the suspicion in the Indian. If we can get

them to realize, you know, that the Indian is a suspicious person and make

'em realize it in the beginning and tell 'em to forget about 'em being

suspicious and trust one another

B: Um huh. ./

C: If we can just trust one another we can- "_ .

B: Do you think P-:broke State University owes um, the Lumbee students


C: Yes, I do.believe that the Lumbees. .. Pembroke State University does

owe us something, in that we started the University and without us,the

University wouldn't be anything. Without us, the University wouldn't

be a University today. Without us the University wouldn't even be there

today. Without us, there wouldn't be a Pembroke State College. Without

us there wouldn't be um, um, a Indian VOfW 1 school. There wouldn't

have been a C e-l 4aO- 13 8 ot whatever the name all the

other names of the University was at the time.

B: Um huh Well, it's. it seems like a very knotty problem and

Page 23

I don't know. Have you noticed um, I've heard some complaints

in this town here by some of the merchants, Indian merchants,that/White

students ans White professors ride on through Pembroke and don't buy

anything in Pembroke and go on down to LUmberton to do whatever trading. .

do you hear anything like this on campus?

C: No, I don't hear it, but I know it goes on. Because, Well, so many things

in Lumbertonrhe White people there. you know, White people are White

people wherever you go. They're gonna. they're gonna stick together,
It I'
try to Jew each other out of a dime whenever they can. And um, they're. .

they heve to. They have to in order to stay alive. Because if they don't
if I
if they don't keep it up or if they do keep it up, jewing on one

another purse, then they're gonna become split. The Indians already

seeing that he's split. Black people are seeing that they are split.

And now, when they see these thing. .. when you the first thing

in solving a problem is to realize it.

B: Um huh .

C: Once. .once someone realizes a problem then he cam become to solve it,

He can begin to solve it. And I believe that the Indian have begun to

realize that they are a split people. That they are a suspicious people

of one another. And they are gonna come together+ like AIM. AIM is going

to help. And um, so many other.Indian organizations. I know the Lumbee

Student Association is going to help.

B: Um huh .

C: And they're gonna come together and they' re gonna and after a while

I the Whites are gonna split. And then when they do, the Indians are gonna

rule over the United States again.

B: Well, it's the population is mighty small. Um. um, have you

noticed now we've mentioned the -' *i4nni n um, thing. Have you

noticed since the Old Maine Drive, a reversal of this? Do you think that

Page 24

some of the Indian people themselves are Indianizing more?

C: Yeah. I I know for myself. like my black hat. I always wear

my black hat where ever I go, I don't care. .. the only place that I

don't wear it to is church. That's the only place that I don't wear my

black hat.

B: As you look around on the walls of this um office of ___

Carolina Indian Voice. um, well, do you see anything different from ui,

the walls of other newspapers that you've been into?

C: Oh, for one thing, there's plenty more Indians on the wall. You don't see

the picture of the editor, you know, the first editor, u see.__ _f__r

rC %i fLWr Black Hawk, Tecumseh and .


B: we ran out of tape on this side .


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