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Edward Gruber ran Spring City Mills, his family's Pennsylvania-based underwear manufacturing company, for several decades beginning in the 1930s. He explains the expansion of the company; its relationship with department store chains; his efforts to maximize profits by producing a superior, yet affordable, product; and his personal and working relationship with North Carolina Senator and textiles businessman B. Everett Jordan.
Stan Gryskiewicz worked as a psychologist for the Center for Creative Leadership beginning with its inception in 1970. In this interview (the second of two), Gryskiewicz describes the Center's development in creativity leadership programs and marketing, its evolution and gradual globalization from the 1970s into the 1990s, and the role of various leaders of the organization.
Stan Gryskiewicz worked as a psychologist for the Center for Creative Leadership from its inception in 1970. In this interview (the first of two), Gryskiewicz describes his background in psychology, his initial duties with the Center during the 1970s, the Center's 1973 managerial reorganization, his perception of various leaders within the Center, and his research in creative leadership development.
Roger Gant explains the professional and personal activities of his father-in-law, Everett Jordan, Democratic United States Senator from North Carolina. Gant discusses how he became involved with Jordan's textile mill and how Jordan structured his business. Jordan's skill at relating to people helped him in business and in politics. Gant focuses on a few of Jordan's political successes, including the way he helped Lyndon Johnson before his presidential bid.
George Watts Hill was a prominent business leader in the Durham area during the twentieth century. He offers his perspective on the changing nature of business and its impact on the community. In particular, he describes his business endeavors in such areas as banking, insurance, land development, dairy farming, and public service.
Chairman and CEO of Quintiles Transnational Corporation describes his company's success and his business philosophy.
Walter F. Ulmer Jr. served as the president for the Center for Creative Leadership, based in Greensboro, North Carolina, from 1985 to 1995. In this interview, Ulmer discusses various changes the Center underwent during his tenure, focusing primarily on the Center's rapid economic and geographic growth.
Richard Barentine, CEO of the International Home Furnishing Marketing Association, describes his leadership style and his contributions to Winston-Salem's furniture industry.
Jim Goodnight describes the founding and growth of his corporation, SAS.
John G. Medlin Jr., CEO of Wachovia, discusses the growth of the Charlotte-based bank.
North Carolina business leader and former Commerce Secretary S. Davis (Dave) Phillips discusses his personal successes as a businessman in High Point and his successes as Commerce Secretary under Governor Jim Martin.
Tracy L. H. Burnett finds financial success after the closing of the White Furniture Company.
Lloyd Griffin was a lawyer who was born and raised in Belvedere, North Carolina. Following his service in World War I, Griffin returned to North Carolina and became involved in state politics. He describes his involvement in the North Carolina Citizens Association and his perception of North Carolina politics, focusing specifically on the leadership of B. Everett Jordan.
Thomas Ellington, a longtime employee of the Sellers Manufacturing Company, describes employee interactions in the mill and how the owner, Everett Jordan, treated his employees.
Frank Daniels Jr., publisher of the
News and Observer of Raleigh, North Carolina, shares some tidbits about his experience at the paper and his involvement in hospital administration as the chairman of the board of directors of Rex Hospital in Raleigh.
Ivey C. Jones, who spent sixteen years working at the White Furniture Factory in Mebane, North Carolina, describes the effects of the plant's takeover and closing.
David R. Hayworth describes the history and business model of his family business, Hayworth Roll and Panel Company.
Robert Riley Sr. describes his thirty-one years at the White Furniture plant in Mebane, North Carolina, a tenure that ended with the plant's closing in 1993.
Gordon Berkstresser III shares the fruits of his study of the textile industry.
Charles D. Thompson describes his career as a small farmer in North Carolina. Though he found financial success in farming, he was not able to recapture the feel of the farming community of his youth.
Alester G. Furman Jr. describes his family's involvement in the founding of Furman University in the early 1800s, his father's role in the establishment of the textile industry in Greenville, South Carolina, and the evolution of the textile industry over the course of the early twentieth century.
L. Worth Harris discusses the trucking company he started in Charlotte, North Carolina, in the early 1930s.
Successful farmer, businessman, and politician Lauch Faircloth discusses the changes in North Carolina's agricultural economy since World War II.
In this May 1978 interview, Kojo Nantambu—one of the participants in the 1971 Wilmington, North Carolina, race conflicts—describes what he remembers of the 1971 strife, the inequities present in the trial of the Wilmington Ten, and the aftermath of the discord.
Nancy Holt, raised in North Carolina's Cane Creek community and a member of the Cane Creek Conservation Authority, discusses the reaction of the community when UNC and the Orange County Water and Sewer Authority attempted to build a reservoir in Cane Creek.
Henry Frye grew up in a segregated farming community in North Carolina during the 1930s and 1940s before becoming a lawyer. He went on to become the first African American elected to the North Carolina General Assembly and to serve on the state supreme court. In this interview, he describes race relations, his career as a lawyer, and his experiences in politics.
Kenneth Iverson, president of Nucor Steel, describes his approach to business, Nucor's success, and the changing profile of the steel industry in the United States.
Eleanor Copenhaver Anderson remembers her work with the YWCA industrial department over the course of forty years. She describes the impact liberalism and communism had on organizing textile mill labor unions.
William and Josephine Clement were both born and raised in the South. They describe their family backgrounds and education. Josephine focuses on race relations in Atlanta and her father's radical politics, while William describes his participation with the Masons and his work with North Carolina Mutual.
Robert Sidney Smith, president and CEO of the National Association of Hosiery Manufacturers, discusses the hosiery industry in North Carolina and the United States.
Private waste management company owner Lonnie Poole discusses the past and present of his incredibly successful endeavor.
Mareda Sigmon Cobb and her sister Carrie Sigmon Yelton both worked long careers in North Carolina textile mills, completing the family journey from farm to factory in the early decades of the twentieth century. Here they describe their family lives both as children and parents, the many implications of the Depression, working conditions in the mills, religion, and other themes central to social and labor history. The economic and material realities of textile employment are explored in detail; each suffered a major injury on the job, neither favored unionization (though their husbands did), and neither received a pension.
In this 1979 interview, Nell Putnam Sigmon describes her upbringing in a large family, her decision at age eighteen to take a job sewing women's gloves, her work in the mill, and her experiences as wife and mother of two children.
In this interview, Jonathan Daniels discusses his father's role as a newspaper editor and Secretary of the Navy, as well as his father's racial and religious views. Daniels also describes how race and the University of North Carolina shaped his own life.
Frank Durham discusses how his family first came to work in the mills and describes other people they got to know there. He describes the inner workings of the mill, the ways management negotiated labor complaints with the employees, the social structure of the mill village, and the commonalities of mill town life.
Zeno Ponder is one of the most respected and influential leaders of Madison County, North Carolina. This interview begins with his descriptions of his family's activities in the area and local political traditions. Ponder briefly describes his experiences at local schools, including Mars Hill College. Ponder became involved in local politics through a training program and his brother's campaign for sheriff.
Beginning with her family background and early childhood, Adamson traces the dynamics that led her to adopt her radical stance later in life. She also responds to the accusations that she had been a Communist spy and explains how the Red Scare affected her life.
In this fast-paced 1975 interview, Virginia Foster Durr remembers her growing awareness of social problems in the South, and continues sharing her life stories through 1948. Along with her husband Clifford Durr, Virginia recounts their move to Washington, D.C., particularly her disaffection with social society and her transition to political action.