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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Jonathan Worth Daniels, March 9-11, 1977. Interview A-0313. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

The disadvantages of poverty, especially in public schools

Daniels explains that the relocation of the governor's mansion culminated in the relocation of wealthier whites. Poorer whites remained in the town's center and no longer attended a mixed income school. After witnessing the decline of the schools, Daniels correlates poverty with a sense of inferiority that cuts across racial boundaries.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Jonathan Worth Daniels, March 9-11, 1977. Interview A-0313. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) in the Southern Oral History Program Collection, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Full Text of the Excerpt

JONATHAN WORTH DANIELS:
About a block and a half. It had been the Governor's palace. It's the foot of Fayetteville Street, where the auditorium is now. And then they built the new Governor's mansion up on Blount Street. That was when the better-off whites moved up to Blount Street. This was left, and it was transformed into one of the first public schools in North Carolina. A good school, I thought. Of course, I was no judge then, but I'm not so much impressed by the feeling that we have advanced far from , that the past didn't have just as good teachers as we have today, with all their degrees and so forth.
CHARLES EAGLES:
And the black children went to a . . .
JONATHAN WORTH DANIELS:
They went to a black school. Now I didn't know anything about that school. And I doubt that in those days that truancy laws were very much enforced. There were a lot of children in the Centennial School that came from a sort of broken-down white cotton mill, back of it, who were definitely poor white and of poor quality. The saddest thing in the world is that the oppressed generally are the inferior. I suppose it's a natural thing, but you like to think that the oppressed would be presidents of the United States if they weren't oppressed, but I'm afraid that inferiority is a basis for inequality. I'm talking about within each race.