Norman wanted her work stool as a souvenir, but it disappeared shortly before she left
Norman grew attached to the stool she used for many years at the mill and announced her intention to take it with her when she left. Shortly before retirement, her stool went missing and she never found it.
Citing this Excerpt
Oral History Interview with Icy Norman, April 6 and 30, 1979. Interview H-0036. 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
They used to have wooden
stools and then they got in that stool over
there—that's the stool over there. I told Milton,
I says, "Milton, I want to tell you, I have never took nothing
out of this mill that wasn't mine. When I go out the last
day, I have dragged my stool with my name on it for forty-seven years. I
dragged it from one warp mill to the other. That's part of
me, Milton. I'm going to take my stool with me."
He says, "No. Lordy, mercy, do you want to get me
I says, "No. I'll go out the back way, but I want to
take my stool with me. I'm going to be a little piggish. I
don't want nobody to have my stool. That's
Well, I went in there. There was about two weeks before I retired. My
stool would always be sitting at one or another of my warp mills. I went
in my warp mill, my stool wasn't there. I thought,
"Well, they left it over at another mill. I'll go
over there and look." They was changing the other mill. I was
looking for my stool, so I could get the top, for I couldn't
get the top unless I had this stool. And my stool wasn't over
there. I went up there to Roy, a colored fellow that run the front of
the mill. I says, "Roy, where's my stool."
He says, "It's back there in the warp mill."
I says, "It ain't."
He says, "Oh, it's over there against the
I says, "It ain't over there nowhere. Have you hid my
He says, "Icy, I ain't touched your stool."
I said, "My stool's gone. Somebody has stole my
Well, he helped me hunt. We hunted all over that room. We looked in every
empty of box. I thought, "Now, somebody is playing a prank on
me. Roy", I says, "Let's look in that empty
box." We looked in every empty box. We killed two hours hunting
my stool. I says, "I can't work without my
He says, "Well, you'll just have to use my
stool." I says, "I'm not going to use your
stool. I want my stool, and I ain't going to work until I
find it. You can just sit down or you can help me hunt my
stool." I went out there, he come to me, and I thought,
"Well, they got it over on the nylons." I went over
there and looked at every stool.
They said, "What are you looking at?"
I says, "My stool's gone." Elena was up on
the stool. I says, "Elena, let me turn your stool
She says, "What for?"
I says, "My name is on my stool and I'm a hunting it.
She says, "Icy, this is an old stool that's been over
here all the time." She sat down, I looked at it and it
wasn't my stool. I says, "No, it ain't
mine." I went on every warp mill, up and down each side, and I
couldn't find my warp stool.
[END OF TAPE 4, SIDE A]
[TAPE 4, SIDE B]
[START OF TAPE 4, SIDE B]
- ICY NORMAN:
… my stool. I went up there in the slasher room. I went up one
side and down the other. All over the front. I was so sick over my
stool. About that time I was coming from the slasher room back to my
He says, "What you doing up here, Icy?"
I says, "Milton, somebody stole my stool."
He says, "Ain't nobody stole your stool."
I says, "My stool's gone. Roy's helped me
hunt it and I've been all over this plant, and I
can't find my stool."
He said, "Well, I'll look around. Could be that some
of them in the twisting room come down here and borrowed it."
I said, "Why didn't they borrow some of the rest of
them?" I went on back, I had to take Roy's stool. I
worried and worried and worried about my stool.
Didn't nobody know that I told Milton what I was going to do.
If they had I'd have laid it on any of them, hiding it. But
didn't nobody know it but Milton. I told Milton. So come to
find out I never did find my stool.