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Excerpt from Oral History Interview with Louise Riggsbee Jones, October 13, 1976. Interview H-0085-2. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007) See Entire Interview >>

Importance of church revivals in a southern working community

Jones emphasizes the importance of religion and religious revival during the early twentieth century in Bynum, North Carolina. According to Jones, each year Bynum had a religious revival, which were typically held in the evening to facilitate the attendance of workers. Similarly, she explains her own entrance into the church during one of these revivals.

Citing this Excerpt

Oral History Interview with Louise Riggsbee Jones, October 13, 1976. Interview H-0085-2. 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

Did the church down here have revivals pretty often?
LOUISE JONES:
Yes, we have a revival almost every year down here.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
Did they do that when you were a little girl?
LOUISE JONES:
Yes.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
They always had a revival.
LOUISE JONES:
They always had a revival once a year.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
What was it like? Did people come from all around?
LOUISE JONES:
It was the people here. Some people in the community from the other churches would come, after it got so they had ways to come and go back. And people would repent and go in the church, young people, and the older people too sometime. It would last about a week, at night, because they always worked during the day here, and they'd have the services at night.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
Would they still have a revival when they worked a night shift? Would people get off for the revival?
LOUISE JONES:
They had one last year, and they had one here about a month ago. But they can't very well get off from their jobs. The ones that work on the morning shift can go, but the ones that go in at three o'clock and work till eleven, they can't very well get off to go.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
The mill never gave people time off to go, even when you were younger?
LOUISE JONES:
It didn't run at night much when I worked. It did the last few years that I worked. After I was married I worked some at night when Hettie and Claiborne were small. But my husband would be at home-he worked on morning-and I didn't work the whole number of hours. I forgot who the man was over it then, but he would let some of us married women that wanted to work some work maybe four or five hours of that time and then come home. And sometimes we'd work the whole time out if they had more work to do and all.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
Were revivals always important to you?
LOUISE JONES:
Oh, yes, I always enjoyed the revivals.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
Did you originally join the church during one?
LOUISE JONES:
Yes. They would take the members in at the last service of the revival. Yes, I joined the church after the revival.
MARY FREDERICKSON:
Do you remember how old you were, or do you remember it as a real important time?
LOUISE JONES:
I don't remember just how old I was, but I was old enough to know what I was doing, all right. I had always been used to going to church. It wasn't like somebody had just started going into church and went up and professed, but I had always been used to going to the church. And I knew what it meant for me to join the church.