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Oral History Interview with Jane Squires, September 21, 2002. Interview R-0192. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007).
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  • Abstract
    Jane Squires became a tobacco auctioneer for the United States Department of Agriculture in 1989, following her father into a male-dominated profession. In this interview, she describes her career, from her efforts to establish herself without insinuating herself into its masculine social culture, to the complex mechanics of the tobacco auction. Squires earned acceptance in the profession despite, or perhaps because of, her effort to isolate herself from the men who dominated it, choosing not to stay at hotels used by sellers and buyers at auctions, or socializing only with men who brought their wives. This decision enhanced her image as a professional, and while she still faced challenges on the warehouse floor, she showed auction participants that she was a serious auctioneer. This interview offers a thorough look at tobacco auctioneering as well as insights into one woman's foray into a male-dominated profession.
  • Men doubt a woman's ability to succeed as a tobacco auctioneer
  • The mechanics of the tobacco auction
  • A woman finds work as a tobacco auctioneer
  • A woman avoids the "good ole boy" network
  • The tobacco auction process
  • Tensions on the tobacco warehouse floor
  • Sexism endures in the tobacco business
  • Qualities of a successful tobacco auctioneer
  • Female tobacco auctioneer experiences sex discrimination
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  • Finding aid to the Southern Oral History Program Collection
  • Database of all Southern Oral History Program Collection interviews
  • The Southern Oral History Program transcripts presented here on Documenting the American South undergo an editorial process to remove transcription errors. Texts may differ from the original transcripts held by the Southern Historical Collection.

    Funding from the Institute for Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this title.