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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with James and Nannie Pharis, December 5, 1978; January 8 and 30, 1979. Interview H-0039. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Political affiliation and thoughts on voting

James and Nannie Pharis briefly describe their political affiliation as Republicans. Nannie, in particular, recalls that her parents were both Republicans, although her mother was unable to vote. She goes on to assert her belief that women should be able to vote and recalls her first act of voting. The excerpt concludes with their brief explanation for why they supported Franklin Delano Roosevelt, rather than Herbert Hoover, despite their Republican leanings.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with James and Nannie Pharis, December 5, 1978; January 8 and 30, 1979. Interview H-0039. 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

ALLEN TULLOS:
Let me go back and ask about your mother and father. Did they have any party politics?
NANNIE PHARIS:
Republican. Yes, indeed. So am I.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Why were they Republicans?
NANNIE PHARIS:
I don't know. Appeared every time there was a war when there was a Democrat president. My father liked Roosevelt, thought he was a smart man. But he got in after Hoover, you know. And he did vote for Roosevelt. He didn't tell us much about it because he didn't want us to tease him about it. He said he thought he was a smart man, and so do I.
ALLEN TULLOS:
But you think of yourself as a Republican?
JAMES PHARIS:
Yes.
NANNIE PHARIS:
Yes, I'd have to vote for a Republican. Because there have been so many wars when there's been a Democrat in.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What about your mother?
NANNIE PHARIS:
She was a Republican, too. We didn't have no chance to vote them days. When he was J.P. at Eden I done my first voting.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Did your father vote?
NANNIE PHARIS:
Oh, yes, he voted. My mother didn't because women didn't vote them days. They passed a law for that in later years.
ALLEN TULLOS:
What did she think about women getting the vote?
NANNIE PHARIS:
Yes, she thought they ought to have a right to vote. I never will forget the first time I voted. They'd haul them in hacks and all kind of vehicles from the mill. They'd take you from the mill over there to vote, and I didn't know anything about it. I just voted a Republican ticket. He was a Republican.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Were you voting for President that time?
NANNIE PHARIS:
Yes.
ALLEN TULLOS:
Who would that have been?
NANNIE PHARIS:
I do declare, I don't know who I voted for. I believe I voted for Hoover. If I did, I'm sorry. But we did vote for Roosevelt, didn't we? Because Hoover made such a mess. That's right, he got in there right after Wilson, that First World War. He didn't have a chance. But I'll tell you, people has lived better since Roosevelt because he wanted them to live better. Have decent homes. And it did turn out to be like that.