Thursday, January 31, 2013

Extension Homemaker News from Alamance, Scotland, Buncombe, Lee Counties, 1986

Tar Heel Homemakers January-March, 1986 issue
The Bethany Extension Homemakers Club of Alamance County has presented its third $500 lifeline unit to the two local hospitals. This unit, presented to Alamance County Hospital, has been contributed in honor of Willie Mae D. Currin, current president of the club.
Mrs. Currin, a former 4-H Club member in Granville County and Extension Agent in Nash County, is retired from the Alamance County and Burlington City Schools where she was a teacher and administrator. She has served on the local 4-H Advisory committee and the Extension Homemaker Advisory Council, is chairman of the Katherine Millsaps Educational Fund, is 4-H demonstration leader and is actively involved in numerous other community and church endeavors.
The Bethany Homemakers Club consisting of 12 members has been recognized for the past two years for its outstanding involvement in citizenship and community outreach activities in the county.
The two previous lifeline units presented to Memorial and County Hospitals honored Esther Painter and Katie B. Glenn.
Funds for the lifeline units have been raised from the sales of the Extension Homemaker cookbooks and from memorial and honor gifts.
January-March 1986 issue, Tar Heel Homemakers
Mozelle (Mrs. W.F.) Parker of Gibson in Scotland County is the 1986 president of the North Carolina Extension Homemakers Association Inc.
Officers were installed by past State President Celestine Rhodarmer during the business section at the 1985 State Council meeting in October, 1985.
Elected earlier by the delegates from the 101 councils, those serving with Mrs. Parker in 1986 are Sarah Nixon, first vice president and coordinator of the program of work; Aline Whittington, second vice president and membership chairman; Marie Evans, recording secretary; Wanda Winslow, corresponding secretary; Mable Jeffries, coordinating treasurer; Linda Bailey, young homemaker; and Ruth Cherry, advisor.
Mrs. Parker retired three years ago after 31 years as a school teacher to devote more time to Extension Homemakers and other community service. The last 10 years of her teaching career, she also was a supervising teacher for St. Andrews Presbyterian Collage and Pembroke State University. This service she considers one of her biggest rewards in teaching and she has seen many of her former students go on to take responsible positions in their communities.
Her EH service has led to recognition as her county Outstanding Leader and VEEP winner and the coveted A&P Leadership Award.
She is a life member of the National Association of Educators, was Southwestern District president of Beta State, Lambda Chapter of Kappa Delta Gamma teachers’ sorority, and was active in the county chapter of NCAE.
She is a member of the Scotland County Health Board, is her local precinct elections registrar, works with United Way and numerous other agencies, is a past president of the Scotch Gardeners Club, was an active stamp collector and served three terms on the board of directors of the NC Agricultural Foundation Inc.
A certified United Methodist lay speaker, Mrs. Parker has been Sunday School teacher, UMW president, choir member and music director, VBS director and recording secretary of the administrative board at historic St. John’s UM Church and again last fall headed the 150-year-old church’s harvest day, which served meals to 1,500 at lunch and supper and drew exhibits from the church community.
She and her husband have a weather station in their back yard and for the past five years have been official Scotland County weather reporters for the USDA in Washington, D.C.
Their home is made warm and personal by many antiques from both their families and by numerous of Mrs. Parker’s crafts and heirloom handiworks. The doors are open to visitors.
January-March 1986 issue, Tar Heel Homemakers
Margaret Decker of Asheville has received the first NCEHA Honorary Lifetime Membership. The award was made by her local club, Biltmore, in Buncombe County. She was state president in 1971 and was active for many years in her club, county, Western District and the state.
The Honorary Lifetime Membership was created by an act of the state executive board at the request of Extension Homemakers in Buncombe County who wanted to pay tribute to Miss Decker for her interest in, support of and contributions to the organization. For the past few years, she has been ill and unable to be active, and the Extension Homemakers wanted her to know how much she is loved and appreciated.
The special membership may be obtained for a member and/or agent of NCEHA Inc. who is in good standing and has given leadership and made a contribution of time and service to the association. It can be given by an individual, local club and county council paying $100 to NCEHA through the state treasurer for the scholarship fund.
By Joy Maddox, from the January-March, 1986, issue of Tar Heel Homemakers
Over the Labor Day weekend, 42 Lee County Extension Homemakers and husbands went down to Georgia. Leaving Sanford in the predawn hours, our invasion of Georgia began with a stop at the Old Sautee Store and Sautee Nachoochee, lunch in picturesque Helen, Ga., and on to Cleveland, the home of the Cabbage Patch doll, where we witnessed the actual birth of a baby from the cabbage patch.
In Atlanta that evening, we were entertained at dinner by expert chefs at the world famous Ichiban Japanese Steak House. Bright and early the next day, we made our way to Newman and 86 acres of crafts, exhibits, food and fun at the Powers Crossroads Country Fair, then on to the breathtaking Laser Show and Stone Mountain.
Monday morning came all too soon, but our journey home included a stop at the Jarrett House in Dillsboro, N.C., and the Biltmore House and gardens at Asheville, ending with a visit to the winery for a tasting party.
With treasures, both in hand and in memory, we returned to Lee County to begin plotting our next course of adventure.
Christmas Show
Braving torrential rains and flash floods, 18 Lee County EH attended the Southern Christmas Show in Charlotte.
We were accompanied by our new Extension agent, Susan Condlin, who also made the trek with us to Georgia. Susan started her newly acquired position in July 1985 and was welcomed with open arms and warm hearts.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Editorials from Carolina Co-operator, January 1940

Editorials from the January, 1940, Carolina Co-operator
The saying that all too often we do not appreciate a person or a service until gone is just as true as it is old. He have come to accept as commonplace good roads, good schools, and many other advantages that were something to dream and yearn for back in grandpa’s day.
The same is true of co-operatives. Only in this last issue of the Progressive Farmer Dr. Clarence Poe points out that there are a great many farmers who do not realize their obligations to the cotton co-operative marketing associations. Says Dr. Poe:
“Many take for granted the revolutionary changes that have occurred in the handling of cotton during the last 15 years. Do you remember what it cost you to market a bale of cotton 20 years ago? It didn’t just happen that the trade is now handling cotton for a small fraction of what it formerly charged. It came about as a result of the competition of the cotton co-ops.
“Now that the ‘water’ has been squeezed out of cotton handling charges, cotton co-ops are no longer able to announce the large cash savings to their patrons as in old days. It is perhaps accurate to say the present value of co-operatives to farmers is not so much what they themselves are able to do, but rather what they are keeping the other fellow from doing.”
True, Dr. Poe, true! And we have actual proof of this right here in North Carolina. Farmers in some counties of the state where the Cotton Association has not been active this year have written for shipping instructions for delivering their cotton. Their complaint is that the market there is not near as high as in other counties where the Association is more active. Yes, it is good business for farmers to support their own co-operatives and keep them active. The way to do that is to be strong, active members.
Editorial from the January, 1940, Carolina Co-operator
When what was the North Carolina Cotton Grower was converted into the Carolina Co-operator five years ago this month, one of the first things our program was to ask the most widely beloved woman in North Carolina to serve as editor of our Home Department. Finding such a person was easy insasmuch as for more than a quarter of a century Dr. Jane S. McKimmon had labored long and untiringly as a pioneer in home demonstration work. Miss “Janie” was a practical leader and she knew that it would take money to make needed farm home improvements, so she set about organizing canning clubs and curb markets and other projects to help farm women have money of their own to spend as they pleased. Her program has been felt from the highest to the humblest farm home in the State and today as a result of her great work stand thousands of painted and well-furnished homes, more livable and enjoyable because of her vision.
Busy though she was, “Miss Janie” consented to add to her many responsibilities that of preparing copy for our Home Department each month. For the past five years her section has appeared regularly in the Co-operator as one of the most consistently read and one of the most valuable in this publication.
A short while ago, however, Dr. McKimmon was asked to draw upon her wealth of information (she was the pioneer in home demonstration work in North Carolina) to prepare for those to come later a history of the extension service from its early days on down to today. The work of assembling this information for publication in book form in the time allotted her has placed a heavy burden upon her and, therefore, she has asked that we temporarily relieve her of the responsibility of editing the Home Department.
Taking over as acting editor of the Home Department, effective with this issue, is Pauline Monroe, who has been an assistant editor of the Carolina Co-operator for the past five years.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Public Libraries for the People of a Rural State, 1944

“The State and the Rural Library” by Marjorie Beal, secretary and director of the North Carolina Library Commission, Raleigh; presented at the New York Library Association conference in Rochester, September, 1944, as published in the Wilson Library Bulletin, January 1945.
People are being born, growing up, and living all their lives without the privilege of libraries or opportunity to read good books! The rural sections shoulder the responsibility of educating their children, and then the young people move into the towns and cities. One means of keeping rural people contented and informed is the county library. And by the county library is not meant a library located in the county seat or in the largest city and used by those students who can visit it during the limited hours it is open. By a county or by a regional library—several counties contracting together—is meant a live, up-to-date collection of books with some way of moving them about so everyone may have books near at home and may select those books he wishes to read. It’s a simple plan, and it works.
The state-financed nine-months’ school of 12 grades receives local supplementing funds in the cities; in many areas, however, the state support makes possible such schooling as has never before been known. The county is an important governmental unit, and counties number 100. Cotton, tobacco, and corn are the principal agricultural products, but potatoes—Irish and sweet, cabbages, peaches, strawberries are now bringing good returns from northern markets.
Mules and a few tractors are used on the farms, and occasionally one meets on the road a big-wheeled ox cart drawn by one or two oxen. Adding contrast to agriculture are cotton mills, lumber mills, and the only plant in the United States to manufacture cigarette papers. Farm homes in North Carolina are larger than the barns, and many have no cellars. Of the three and one-half million people about 900,000 or approximately one forth are Negroes. Separate schools and separate library service must be maintained for the whites and the Negroes—for North Carolina is that state between Virginia and South Carolina. The Cherokee Indian Reservation is in the western section, and in the east are settlements of Indians. In one county a movie theater has three doors and three separate seatings—one for the Negroes, one for the Indians, and one for the whites. The state and the federal government have acquired large tracts of land in North Carolina. Submarginal land located in the extreme east and west add to the problem of taxation and living conditions.
A Rural State
North Carolina is a rural state, and the rural people are its backbone. Until recently library service was none too good, 68 per cent of the people did not have public library service when in 1927 the Citizens Library Movement was started to wage a battle against ignorance and indifference. But in North Carolina we didn’t begin by talking about “library service,” nor do we talk about it very often now. We talk about “books and reading.” That is what the people want—books to read. The mechanics of obtaining this service comes as a secondary interest. That “we” includes leaders like Dr. Frank Graham, president of the university, officers and members of every club and organization in the state. Providing books and reading is today everybody’s concern. Governor Broughton has stated publicly that the library development with State Aid for Public Libraries has been one of the outstanding achievements of the state in recent years. Every publication and organ has carried library information. The university news letter has devoted several entire issues to the public library. College and school libraries have realized that more books and more reading in the homes mean better students. The radio and the newspapers have given time and space, but the most effective news stories have been those written locally. One year a news woman working with the North Carolina Library Commission wrote good library publicity which was sent to every paper. Her splendid stories weren’t read as much as the articles written by the local librarians. Most libraries opened their doors and offered free service to the people who lived outside the locality.
No one would wish to see a return to the distressing period when WPA projects were necessary. North Carolina benefited by a good WPA library project in charge of an efficient and competent trained and experienced librarian. Libraries were started in many counties, and bookmobiles and books were purchased for demonstrations. A few of the libraries so created have closed, less than six; ten of the bookmobiles and all the books are in use.
No “Good Time”
There isn’t such a thing as “a good time to start a library,” nor is there ever a good time to request state aid. North Carolina tried and then tried again. In 1937 the first request was made to the North Carolina General Assembly for State Aid for Public Libraries. The bill was passed, but all appropriation was stricken out. In 1939 a second request was made. Each time additional legislators were aware of the need in their communities; each time libraries gained friends. In 1941 there were three forces to help: there was a library plank in the Democratic platform, a governor who had been a library trustee for 22 years, and a valuable friend of the library movement who visited each elected legislator between November and January. When the session convened, all pushed the request to a successful vote. For each year of the biennium $100,000 was voted; and this was increased in 1943 to $125,000 for each year.
Then arose the problem of distribution. The bill as written included the phrase “for the whole State.” The Library Commission Board was authorized and empowered to allocate the funds. Each of the 100 counties was offered an equal amount whether it was a large or small county, a rich or poor county. Each county cooperating must appropriate funds for county library service and present a plan for such service. The first year, 76 counties shared in the fund; 80 counties shared in it last year, 1943-44, and each received $1,484.35 from state aid.
North Carolina is interested in regional development. A beautiful plan for library regions had been worked out on paper. We expected the state aid would help to develop public library service along these lines. In some places it has done so; in others it will do so. We found in trying to apply our plan that people also had ideas and sometimes prejudices. One person stated it well—that they were temperamentally incapacitated from accepting the plan. One county said, “We couldn’t contract with that adjoining county; they never live up to what they promise to do.” Rivers, mountains, roads, trading areas, habits of travel, all had to be considered. The smaller counties feared that the larger counties would derive all the benefits instead of sharing their books and service.
Some groupings and counties did materialize, however. In opposite sections of the state two regions were formed of three counties each. A trained, experienced librarian, a bookmobile, and books were secured by each region. The headquarters library was located in the trading center; each county had local libraries open to the people who came into town. Trips of the bookmobile were scheduled to take books and the trained librarian into all corners of the region. Books were loaned to schools to supplement the school libraries. A regional library board, with representatives from each county wasd appointed by the commissioners of the several counties. Funds, books, and services were pooled. In other sections tri-county libraries were started. Each county sent books into each section, either by bookmobile, by car, by county officials, or by interested citizens. Some of these counties have now withdrawn from the plan in order to employ full-time librarians for themselves. North Carolina now has five regional libraries of two or more counties and one tri-county plan.
Gradually the people themselves are making a statewide plan of regional library service. And what the people have made for themselves they cherish and develop! When one trustee of a regional library was asked his opinion of the library service, he hesitated a long moment to reflect, then he said: “It’s good! Ten people are now getting books to one when the service began.” That was in one of the smaller and in the poorest county in the state. When the plan had first been discussed with the three county commissioners of that small county, two had stood like cigar store Indians, as though they didn’t hear or understand. Funds were voted, however, and that county became part of the Nentahala Regional Library and shared in state aid. Six months later those two commissioners were so enthusiastic about the books their families were reading that we had difficulty in breaking away from their eager talk.
In one county with several small libraries, dissatisfaction was brewing because count and state funds all appeared to be going to the headquarters library. The small library was constantly using books purchased with the county and state funds, it was being aided and helped by the county library. To make the small library more a part of the county system a share of the county fund was allocated to each library each month for the purchase of books, to be selected by the small library and to be ordered and processed at the headquarters library. The amounts of $300 and $600 a year for books for each library resulted in better cooperation.
State Aid for Public Libraries has not only encouraged local appropriations, but it has also given an assurance of permanency to the whole library program. State aid is only allocated on the county basis, since it was voted for the purpose of providing books and reading materials for rural people. The state fund may be used toward the salary of a trained librarian, for the purchase and operation of a bookmobile, or for the purchase of books. The largest per cent of the fund has been used to purchase books, since books have been everywhere the greatest need.
Increased Appropriations
Local appropriations, city and county, have continually increased; they are used for local expenses such as rent and building repairs, salary of library workers, equipment, supplies, and books. Many localities have employed the workers trained on the WPA library program; they work in the local libraries under the supervision of the trained county librarian.
In a rural state, bookmobile service is the most economical and efficient service since it makes possible regular exchange of books. Bookmobiles serve the remote sections of the county and permit the county librarian to introduce people and books. Forty-two bookmobiles are now serving 46 North Carolina counties. Three bookmobiles were in use in North Carolina before 1930, when the North Carolina Library Association collected funds to purchase a bookmobile for demonstration through the North Carolina Library Commission. In 1936, a Ford truck with a body specially built to shelve books began demonstrating to the counties that North Carolinians would read if they had something to read. Several books had been published which deplored the lack of knowledge and the number of nonreaders in the state. How could they read with nothing to read! Once books were available, they were eagerly used.
Tangible Demonstration
It took such a tangible demonstration as the library commission bookmobile, loaned to counties for one or more months, to make the people understand the importance of such service. The first two counties in which it was used immediately secured their own bookmobiles; in one county the vehicle was a gift from a woman legislator, and in the other county it was purchased by the county commissioners. It is interesting that the library commission bookmobile is still in use and is now serving the three counties in one region. War has retarded the purchase of bookmobiles, but one was secured last summer from Army surplus through the United States Procurement Office. Such purchases will ease the situation until new trucks are again in the market. Gas and tire rationing have made the visits of the bookmobile real occasions for neighborhood gatherings and for an exchange not only of books but of ideas and comments. In the towns and larger settlements where there are no libraries, deposit stations have been established in stores, in homes, or in community centers. Such stations do not contain permanent collections of books; as the locality finishes with books and periodicals, they are exchanged.
In 35 of the 80 counties cooperating in the state aid there are no bookmobiles; other methods of distribution must be used. The home demonstration agent and the county nurse take the librarian and a collection of the books to club meetings and to clinics, where the librarian talks books, tells stories to the children, and circulates books. Other county officials transport book collections. People coming into town bring books for exchange. In some places the librarian’s own car serves as a bookmobile. Books to satisfy special requests are sent by parcel post; volumes are mailed with weather is too bad for regular trips. Reference questions are answered by correspondence.
Reading interest has shown marked improvement. Adults who have read little or nothing since the left school begin by reading books of action and romance, love stories and Westerns. As their reading ability improves, they read more normally, books on the World War, biography, and sciences. Copies of the newest books are bought for county people. Except in a technical way the term “nonfiction” is not used; librarians and readers talk about biography, poetry, travel, history.
Proof of Interest
One proof that many people are concerned about supplying books and information is the story of the mill which purchased, when it was first published, 30 copies of You Can’t Do Business With Hitler; every department of the plant had copies, and every worker had an opportunity to read the book. At one bookmobile stop in a cotton mill village, one mill worker said his family used to spend 50 cents a month for magazines. It was a large family, and the more expensive magazines were not purchased. “Now,” he said, “we don’t have to buy cheap magazines. We get good books free from the county library.” Then he told of the good books his family had been reading.

Saturday, January 26, 2013

Reaching and Teaching Others, 1986

January-March 1986 issue, Tar Heel Homemakers
Lillian Scott, program aide and Orange County Extension Homemaker, received the National Paraprofessional Award at the National Association of Extension Home Economists’ annual meeting in September, 1985, in San Diego, California. She earlier received the State Paraprofessional Award and the Minnie Miller Brown Award of $150 at the N.C. Association of Extension Home Economists’ annual meeting.
“The award recognizes outstanding paraprofessionals for their imaginative and effective methods of reaching special audiences,” says Bonnie Davis, home economics Extension agent.
Lillian works with youth through the Expanded Foods and Nutrition Program, a program financed and designed for helping families with limited resources to upgrade their nutritional status.
As an adult, as well as youth aide, she maintained a high family and youth load. She reaches and works with more than 400 youth each year through community groups. “Motion for Life” and “Mousercise” have been the most effective teaching methods, combining nutrition, exercise, fitness, and self-esteem.
“The aerobic exercise adds great appeal to nutrition teaching and learning. Teaching methods that have worked well for Lillian are food shows, day camps, residence camps, learning gardens, tasting parties, and fun fairs,” said Mrs. Davis.
She has reached nearly 2,000 youth and adults with nutrition information working with many volunteers, individuals, and through 53 groups.
Lillian is a member of the Cedar Ridge Extension Homemakers Club where she served several years a president. Her daughter, Serena, now serves as club president.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Farm News Across N.C., January 1935

From “Around the State” Carolina Co-Operator, January, 1935
Two years ago the home demonstration clubs of Johnston County raised an educational fund of $150 to help Mary Gulley, an orphan, through her first year at Boiling Springs College. Next year they raised $175 to help Miss Gulley through Eastern Carolina Teachers College.
This year grateful Miss Gulley, now teaching, is repaying the loan. Well pleased, the club women are now helping six other girls go to college.
Grandson Wins
Forty years ago in the hills of Wilkes County, later famous for another type of “cawn,” D.V. Nichols started growing and improving a variety of corn known as Wilkes County White.
Last year his grandson, Quinten Nichols, growing the same Wilkes County White, won for the second successive time the sweepstakes prize at the State Fair. He competed with 156 other entries.
Pullets or Roosters
High spot of the recent short course for poultrymen at State College was a demonstration in “chick sexing” by Dr. J.C. Hammond of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. He showed the astonished poultrymen how by careful investigation the sex of young chicks can be accurately determined, enabling the poultryman to purchase the number of potential pullets or roosters he needs.
Neighbors shook their heads crosswise in 1927 when Price Brawley, Iredell County boy, paid $165 for Majestic’s Sarah, a pure-bred jersey cow. Since then, however, Majestic’s Sarah and her offspring have won prize after prize. And now for making the best record with Jerseys in 4-H calf club work for two years in North Carolina, Brawley has been awarded the four-year scholarship to State College offered by Mr. and Mrs. Cameron Morrison.
Boy and His Dog
To most boys a dog is a prized possession not to be parted with—flowers and shrubs just things to “tend to.”
To most women a bird dog is just something to “mess up” the house—flowers and shrubs something to make a house a home.
At Newton Grove in Sampson County Mrs. A.W. Bizzell began landscaping to make her home more attractive. She found she needed more shrubbery, flowers, and grass for the lawn.
Her son, Oscar, wanted to do his part to make the home more beautiful. He wanted to give his mother some shrubbery and flowers, but had no money.
Son Oscar racked his brain, remembering that a neighbor had offered to buy his prize bird dog. Away from home he slipped with the dog to the neighbors, to return soon with a ten-dollar bill clutched in his hand and a sob in his throat.
But smiles wreathed his face when he handed his mother the $10. She now has the desired shrubbery and Son Oscar is happy in the knowledge that he has helped his mother to beautify their home.
For a long, long time agricultural leaders have been contending—and rightfully so—that only through strong organization and proper representation can the farmer get his just share of the good things of the land.
Further evidence that the farm leaders are right in their contention is presented in what transpired at a recent meeting of economists and civic leaders on unemployment insurance at the University of North Carolina.
The subject was fully discussed from all angles, except that no provision was made to take care of the farmer.
This did not suit L. Bruce Gunter, vice-president of the cotton association, who had been requested by Dr. G.M. Pate, president, to represent the 18,000 members of the cotton association. Mr. Gunter rose to his feet and in no uncertain language emphasized that the plan should also take care of the unemployed farmer.
What will come of it, we don’t know—but it was interesting to note that many of the economists got out their pencils and began making notes on what Mr. Gunter said. No doubt they had overlooked the farmer simply because no one had told them he should be included.
Irvin S. Cobb, the famous Kentucky writer and humorist who once said all North Carolina needed was a press agent, got into the papers the other day when he gave the distillers’ code authority the following definition of Carolina Corn:
“Illicit corn liquor may easily be identified by these: It smells like gangrene starting in a mildewed silo; it tastes like the wrath to come; and when you absorb a deep swig of it, you have the sensation of having swallowed a lighted kerosene lamp.
“A sudden violent jolt of it has been known to stop the victim’s watch, snap both his suspenders, and crack his glass eye right across—all in the same motion.
“Personally, I would recommend it only to persons who are headed for the last hiccup and want to get it over with as soon as possible. And if you must drink it, always do so while sitting flat on the floor. Then you don’t have so far to fall.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Juanita Hudson Received Superior Service Award, 1985

January-March 1986 issue, Tar Heel Homemakers
Juanita (Mrs. Mack) Hudson of Benson was named recipient of the third NCEHA Superior Service Award at the State Council Awards Luncheon in October in Raleigh. Previous winners are Mrs. B.W. Pshyk and Mrs. Elmer B. Lagg.
Mrs. Hudson, a state, district, and county council president, through the North Central District, has been an Extension Homemaker for 37 years. She served three years as National EH Council cultural arts chairman. In 1972, it was her suggestion that started the Nickels for National fund for leadership development during the National EHC Conference. Two years ago, the fund was renamed Nickels for Leadership and provides Regional Leadership Training workshops in the four NEHC regions. Mrs. Hudson attended her first RLT workshop with the NC delegation in November in Jacksonville, Fla.
She is beginning a five-year term as consultant to the NCEHA cultural arts, textiles and clothing program of work committee.
In other Extension involvement, she is a member of the Harnett County Extension Advisory Council and has just completed several years as treasurer of the NC Extension Advisory Council, serving since the council first organized. She is a life member of the Associated Country Women of the World and was a delegate to the ACWW Triennial Conference in Perth, Australia. Currently, she is a member of the advisory board of the NC State University School of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
As outstanding 4-H club president in her youth, Juanita invited by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt to christen the USS Tyrrell, an AKA vessel named for Tyrrell County.
Twice named Harnett County Outstanding Homemaker, she is recipient of the coveted state A&P Leadership Award; received the State Friends of Extension Award in 1983 from Epsilon Sigma Phi professional fraternity of the Extension Service; was named one of three volunteers of industry nationally in 1985 and was honored at a reception during the American Home Economist meeting in Philadelphia, Pa.
The former Juanita Ogburn, born in Johnston County, she and Mack live on his family farm in Harnett County. She graduated from Cleveland High School in Smithfield, Massey’s Business College, Jacksonville, Fla., and New York School of Design.
Her business, Crossroads Interiors and Antiques, is the restored log cabin where Mack’s great-grandparents started housekeeping. She is a consultant in interior design and in consumer affairs, often speaking before the State Legislature.
She and Mack have two sons, Michael of Los Angeles, Calif., a consultant with Arthur Anderson, and Kent of St. Simons Island, Ga., Southern Region manager with Accuray Corp. of Columbus, Ohio; three grandsons and one granddaughter.
In addition to her Extension activities, Juanita is a member of the Coats Woman’s Club, served as precinct chairman and member of the Harnett County Democratic Women, member of Ebenezer Presbyterian Church where she is a deacon and Sunday school teacher. She is currently president of the Women of the Church in Fayetteville Presbytery and a member of the Ministry Group of Women, Synod of North Carolina.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

'Worthwhile Jobs Are Not Easy,' 1941

From Miss Current’s Column in the January 1941 issue of The Southern Planter
People who know the heavy schedule of a home agent sympathize with her. Of course her work is hard, but worthwhile jobs are not easy and it is inspiring work. One home agent says in a recent letter to me:
“Tomorrow, I drop over the mountain for a two-day school. I’ll be all worn out, for it’s the worst road I ever traveled. The people are inspiring though. At one home I shall find a crippled girl 16, at another a widow of a few days, at another a nice flock of White Leghorn chickens, at three to five homes new cotton mattresses, three or four new pressure cookers, a new bathroom, etc. We are to can chicken, make rolls, cookies, bread with yeast, distribute patterns and teach the women to make Christmas presents of craps of wood, burlap bags, acorns, etc.
“The women have asked for this. No special order, they come like to a ‘protracted meeting’. We are to take one thing each for our lunch and spread it together.
“Would you think of it? Several homes have bathrooms and running water.
“I’m taking my old newspapers to one woman to paper her house. I’ve got to go to the rag shaking now and find a coat for another one over there. I shall plan to pay not more than $1 for it.”

Victory Gardens Encouraged, 1943

Extension has printed 300,000 copies of War Series Bulletin No. 14, More Gardens for Victory in 1943. The publication is free to the public. Also 120,000 copies of Extension Circular No. 261, “Garden Guide, an illustrated pamphlet showing in pictures of the step-by-step procedure of growing a Victory Garden.

Saturday, January 19, 2013

How East Bend, NC, Got Its Library, 1986

By Jean Marlow, Tar Heel Homemakers January-March, 1986
At last, the long-held dream of a public library for the small town of East Bend in northeast North Carolina has become a reality, primarily through the efforts of the East Bend Extension Homemakers and the East Bend Ruritans.
After years of frustration because they had no library, EH and Ruritans met in July, 1984, to discuss what would have to be done to have a library, appointed a committee to work with the Regional Library and the Yadkinville Public Library, conducted a survey and found support.
The committee met with the Yadkin County Library Board, got positive response and a list of requirements to be met to be able to secure the loan of books.
All requirements were met in six days, and the board was so impressed with the effort and quality of work, the loan of books was promised, and with the funds from EH and Ruritans, renovation of a building formerly a grocery store began in May. The library opened June 5.
The first new book, The Carolina Quaker Experience, was donated by two EH members. The library is open Tuesday from 4 to 8 and Saturday from 9 to 12 and is staffed completely by volunteers, many EH members.
Open house was held September 22 with members of the East Bend and Fall Creek EH Clubs providing refreshments Fall Creek members also made a substantial cash contribution to the library fund.
On opening day, after playing Little League baseball, a group of young boys in uniform came running through the door and headed for the children’s section, showing the same enthusiasm for books as for baseball! Each day the library has been open has brought in patrons, from as few as 12 to as many as 89.
The EH and Ruritans held a beef barbeque and made $2,000 for a fund for the next goal of buying the building. Other fund-raising projects are underway.
NCEHA has a constitution which states that the purpose of the association is to educate members in ways of promoting higher standards of family living, homemaking and citizenship responsibility. Those lessons have been well-learned and used by East Ben EH.

Friday, January 18, 2013

"A Memorable Wash Day"

“A Memorable Wash Day” by Gladys Brooks Roberts White from Special Memories: A Collection of Stories by Chowan County Extension Homemakers
On a very cold windy day Mother and I were out near the well doing the family wash. My job was to draw the water. The chain was so cold and so hard to hold to bring up a bucket of water. The clothes were boiled in a big black iron washpot. The clothes were scrubbed on the metal washboard to help clean them.
Mother had persuaded Granddaddy to let her wash his only pair of wool pants. After scrubbing the pants for awhile, she put them in the wash pot to boil them.
When she put the wash stick in the pot to take out the pants, all she took out was the facings and the pockets. The Red Devil lye and homemade soap had dissolved the wool pants.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

A Tribute to Jane S. McKimmon by Velma Beam

A Tribute to Jane Simpson McKimmon by Velma Beam, undated
The North Carolina Home Agents Association appreciates the privilege of paying a tribute to Dr. Jane Simpson McKimmon. We borrow from Milton two lines which aptly describe her:
                “Grace is in all her steps, heaven in her eye—
                In every gesture dignity and love.”
In her we see womanhood in strength; courage to face problems relevant to her keen insight into human nature; and love for people.
Goodwill has been at the center of everything she has done—And she has done so many things for the rural people of North Carolina—all of which has been and will continue to be reflected in the lives and deeds of the entire populace of North Carolina.
Hers has been a live of service to the people and is like mother’s sewing box—always brimming full, with always room for one more thing.
She was born and lives today in Raleigh, North Carolina, ‘a typical southern town where town and country folks have always been acquainted with each other’s mode of life’; and Raleigh has been the center of her life and work. Here she attended Peace Junior College; here in 1909 she had her first office when she became a lecturer in Farmers’ Institutes and later state director of home demonstration work; here from North Carolina State College of Agriculture and Engineering, she took her B.S. degree in 1927 and her M.S. degree in 1929. From Raleigh, in 1917, Governor Bickett appointed her Director of Home Economics to help direct the World War I food program; in 1925 she was made assistant director of Agricultural Extension, a position she held until her retirement; in 1935 Governor Ehringhaus appointed her on the board of the first state Rural Electrification Authority, of which she is now vice-chairman; Governor Hoey in 1937 and Governor Broughton in 1941 appointed her to the Board of Directors of the state Farmers’ Co-operative Exchange; the same governors made and kept her a member of the state Council of National Defense, World War II.
It would be impossible to list the organizations to which Mrs. McKimmon belongs and the honors she has received from them, but she does appreciate especially the LL.D. degree conferred on her in 1934 by the University of North Carolina in recognition of her outstanding contribution to the educational field in organizing and setting a pattern which brought the home demonstration work to its present efficiency; she was the first woman in the United States to receive the Distinguished Service Ruby given her by the National Extension Honor Society, Epsilon Sigma Phi; yet, her real monument is in the people and in the work which helped them to help themselves.
Her dynamic spirit, indomitable courage, originality, initiative, delight in a good time, and contagious enthusiasm have made her a much loved leader and a great teacher. Her particular type of teaching, by demonstration, has grown until it knows no boundaries. Through this demonstration teaching she proved the truth of the statement that grand old man of Agriculture Seaman A. Knapp, who said, “You may doubt what you hear; you may even doubt what you see; but you cannot doubt what you hear, see, and are permitted to do for yourself.”
The home economics phase of Extension work began in November, 1911 when Dr. McKimmon was made State Home Demonstration Agent of North Carolina. At that time, she was the young mother of four children with a background of experience as lecturer and Director of Women’s Institute.
We are proud that our state was one of the five Southern states which set the pattern for Home Demonstration in the world—and we are proud of the leadership North Carolina exhibited under the direction of our beloved Dr. McKimmon—the power of demonstration as a teaching method was, and still is, the keynote of the organization she developed. From this humble beginning, based on the word service, a strong cooperative extension organization is now established in every State of the Union.
We would not forget the hardships attendant upon those first few years when Tomato Club Girls led by their dauntless State Leader, grew and canned a commercial product of excellent quality. Thus North Carolina clubs were the first in the country to put standard packs on the market! This very thing did much to open the eyes—and pocketbooks—of many county commissioners who had refused to see the necessity for such “frills” as they termed Home Demonstration work in that time.
Out of her love for, and confidence in the people who are living on the farm and in the farm home, the project leader phase of the total program has evolved—through these project leaders the great spread of work has been accomplished from county to county in an incredibly short time.
The phenomenal growth of the work under Dr. McKimmon’s enthusiastic guidance has attracted national attention, and many times she has been called to various sections of our nation, especially to University classes, to present her plan of organization and methods of conducting the work—thus her influence has spread far beyond the boundaries of our own state.
Exercising splendid judgment in the choice of personnel has been one of the strongest points in Dr. McKimmon’s career as an outstanding Home Economist. Most of us have heard her say “I’ve always sought the positive person—the one who did not say, ‘It can’t be done.’ She knew it could be done, and did it. Success always crowned her efforts.”
Never forgetting that a properly trained person is naturally the most efficient, Dr. McKimmon insisted on further education for agents. From 1916 on she planned two-week short courses at the Womans College and at State College where a 30-hour unit course was given. Careful selection of the outstanding educators in the country made these courses worthwhile. Agents were greatly benefitted and were better able to prove that “it could be done.”
Even now Dr. McKimmon is helping in every way possible to secure sufficient time for agents to study and obtain additional training in their chosen fields. In her own words, “This looked-for procedure is not in sight as yet, but the will may find a way.” That is symbolic of the driving force back of the successful career.
Ever ready to encourage professional advancement not only for the personnel in her own organization, but in other educational agencies as well, she helped to organize the State Home Economics Association which embraces Home Economics in high school, college, Extension, and in business—this is one example of how alert she has always been to opportunities for progress, and how cooperative she is with other agencies in order to hasten that progress!
In her recent book, When We’re Green We Grow, we find two paragraphs which summarize the great work of this great woman:
“There wasn’t much cash in the North Carolina farm home in the early nineteen hundreds. There isn’t much now. But there is a different attitude on many farms toward what constitutes wealth on the farm, and different method of making it serve the farm family.
“It has been a ready and receptive people with whom I have worked, a people who were green and ready to grow; and I have seen the sap rise, the leaves put forth, and a multitude of blossoms bring fruit in its season.”
This concept of the total view of the farm and home demonstration is seen from the Western North Carolina Mountains to the Seashore of the eastern coast of our great state. It has grown from the horse and buggy style—horseback even in some instances—to the streamlined automobile stage—with good roads leading to every cove, across every swamp and to the end of every trail.
We are so grateful that Mrs. McKimmon has lived to see her dream realized, the dream of having every county in the state organized, with the women and girls accepting the responsibility for those organizations in their own counties. County Councils which make forward social, educational, economic and spiritual improvement for all the people.
Skills have been developed, home improvements have been made, incomes have been increased, the general good health of people has been improved—and what is more important—people have been made better, lives have been made better. After all, “the final crop of any land is the people and the spirit of the people.” At it all stems from the work begun in 1911 by our pioneer, Dr. McKimmon, whose philosophy has been the human approach!
Active always in church work, she has a quiet but vital faith; and her belief in prayer is a thing which she has used in a practical way through all the years. Problems which are not to be solved in a moment are meditated on in a quiet place with trust in an Infinite Source of Power.
Perhaps this habit was formed early in her life when in her own words, “My earliest recollections are of being tucked into bed and the entrancing tales my mother would read to us every night! She could make us see vividly the things she described—the journeys St. Paul and other Bible stories….”
Her philosophy regarding the contributions of her agents, farm women and 4-H Club girls, to the fullest development of women, influence her co-workers and is, in a large measure, the key to the many fine accomplishments which may be accredited to the distaff side of the North Carolina Extension Service.
She has lived and is continuing to live a rich life both professionally and personally. She is blessed with a keen appreciation of the arts, of literature and of nature. She attributes much of her appreciation of music and literature to her early childhood. Brought up by strict Scotch Presbyterian parents who knew and loved the finer things of life, Mrs. McKimmon early cultivated a sense of values as to the arts. She has studied and traveled extensively, gathering a wealth of experiences and materials which serve to enrich her work.
We are proud of her accomplishments, thankful for her friendship and all love her for her courage, genuineness, integrity and loyalty. We wish for her many more years of gracious living and continued influence in her native state and other states. Memories of happy associations with her will be cherished always by those of us who know her and work with her—a really great lady, our own Dr. Jane S. McKimmon.
Velma Beam Moore’s oral history, August 5, 1998, is on file at Joyner Library, East Carolina University.  She speaks about her teaching and home economics career.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

News From NC Farm Homes, January, 1939

“For the Farm Woman” from Dr. Jane S. McKimmon, Assistant Director of State Extension, the January, 1939, issue of Carolina Co-operator
Water Systems
Mrs. Effie Scott of Guilford County, who has been carrying water from a spring on a steep hill for 30 years, has lately installed a water system in her house which will cut out all those trips up to the spring and down again. She has also secured electric current and can flood the house with light as well as run some of the step-saving conveniences.
Mrs. Ida Brookshire of Alexander County and her children did their own work in piping water from the spring to the back porch, and then to the milk box. They plan to pipe it into the kitchen as soon as they can get around to it.
Comfortable , Versatile Clothes
The Kernersville Home Demonstration Club in Forsyth County has demonstrated that women can go “around the clock with one frock” and be well dressed for all occasions.
With a well-made basic dress of good material, simple design, and not too pronounced in color, one can do a great deal toward stretching the clothing dollar, say these alert housewives. Accessories will work wonders and if one starts shopping in the morning and stops for lunch with a few friends, she can go on to tea or a meeting, transformed in appearance by the addition of a different collar, bag and pair of gloves. Not only the appearance will be helped by the change, but there will be a refreshened spirit.
From the Clemmons Club comes the declaration that the woman who takes care of her feet as well as her back is freshest at the end of the day. When she is thinking of her costume she should know the importance of well-fitted, comfortable shoes.
In Camden County they believe that shoes should be worn to protect and support the feet, but sometimes the wearer is more interested in satisfying the eye and the pocketbook than in selecting appropriate, durable and comfortable footwear.
Do not insist upon a certain size of shoes, but rather that they fit. Look at the ball of your foot, which is the widest at the large toe joint, and see if it is directly over the largest part of the shoe.
1939 Spending
In Johnston County in 1938 demonstrations in wise buying were recently given and pointers on the buying of electrical equipment were of great interest. The electric iron was of first importance; for the amount of money invested, it is probably one of the most helpful aids to the housewife. Refrigerators, however, ran a close second, but it was agreed that the washing machine probably saved the most labor. It does away with long soaking of the clothes and hard rubbing and wringing, and a woman can read the paper while it works or she may go about other duties in the home.
In purchasing a washing machine for your home, ask yourself these questions: Are the running parts encased in an airtight box filled with oil? Is there a safety release for the roller? Are the controls easily reached? Does the tub drain well? What type of wringer does it have, old type or the centrifugal dryer?
Order for Marmalade
Mrs. Spencer Dean of Franklin County has received an order for homemade orange-grapefruit marmalade from Royster’s in Raleigh, and Mrs. Cornelia Morris, home demonstration specialist, is highly pleased at her high quality product. It is beautifully packed in globe-shaped glass jars and has found its way to the gift Shop at Forestville.
Emergency Shelf
In Gaston County the county commissioners have appropriated $50 for an educational exhibit of an emergency shelf showing the things that may be canned on the farm to set aside to serve for an emergency meal.
This shelf will show not only variety but a high standard of quality, and will be placed in the home center in Gastonia. Twenty-five dollars will be spent for the exhibit and $25 for the case to hold it.
Cook Delicious Pork Thoroughly
When hog-killing time rolls round, the sharp winter tang in the air makes us hungry for crisp brown roast, well seasoned sausage, spare ribs, and crackling bread.
Pork is a nutritious meat found on most farms in North Carolina and can be easily prepared if the cook will give it time. All pork must be thoroughly cooked and roast pork is at its best when it is well done to the very center, juicy and with a crisp brown crust.
Thorough cooking not only develops the best flavor in pork but it is also necessary to destroy trichinae, a parasite occasionally found in fresh pork ad one with which you do not wish to get acquainted.
Women’s Activities
Mrs. J.W. Martin of Surry County has freshly waxed and stained floors in her house, thanks to muscle power, walnut hulls, beeswax and other ingredients. Write for Extension Pamphlet No. 14, which gives you the instructions Mrs. Martin followed.
Many of our rural farm wives belong to garden clubs in town or incorporate some of their teachings in community programs.
People drive from far and wide to buy fruit cakes baked by Mrs. N.J. Brown of Northampton County.
According to the Iredell County home agent, there are good reasons for recreation other than just joy. When men and women go swinging down the room in the grand march it is easy to see that fun is not all there is to it; grace is required and ability to follow directions, and it is also an excellent form of exercise.
Martin County women have been making brooms of broom corn which was saved last spring and harvested and cured in the early fall. Much experimenting was done at first, but those who stuck to it are turning out very good brooms.
In the Farm Kitchen
--To prevent omission of flavoring in a cake, measure it into the milk or other liquid.
--Use the water drained from canned vegetables for its mineral and flavor value in creamed soups.
--Wrap cheese in a cloth wet with vinegar and store it in a cool place to keep it fresh.
--Rinse the pan in hot water before boiling milk to prevent its sticking.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

The Rural Life Has Its Charms, 1935

“Stay on the Farm” by Alice Dugger Grimes, published in the January, 1935, issue of Carolina Co-Operator
To every boy and girl, to every woman and man on every farm in North Carolina, I wish a “Happy New Year.”
I am using the word “happy” for it lies within the power of practically every county dweller to make happiness, and I am refraining from the usual greeting “Prosperous New Year,” for the making of prosperity does not lie so directly in the country dweller’s hands.
Happiness—that is what we must stress every day of the 365 days of the year 1935. And nowhere can this be attained to a greater degree than out among the fields and the woods—among the birds and the trees. So many of us think of happiness only in terms of money and what money buys—happiness as gaiety—as frivolity, while happiness is so largely just a state of mind.
Little money, perhaps, finds its way into our pockets, but how rich we may be if we develop what is around us in the country. Put a money value on that for which we would have to pay heavily were we living in town and see how the figures run up. Who thinks of water and wood in the country, of the shrubs and trees and vines to be had for the digging, of the milk and vegetables? The cost of living on a farm is up to the dweller of that farm.
Planting on the average North Carolina farm has been confined almost entirely to the so-called money crops—cotton and tobacco. The garden, the cow, chickens seem to have been beneath the personal supervision of the head of the house. In consequence just a very ordinary garden, a small, spasmodically tended, mongrel flock of chickens, sometimes a cow, sometimes no cow, but somehow pigs are always given consideration. I have noticed, and haven’t you too, that the average countryman seems to get more pleasure from his pigs, their growth and their multiplication, than from any other animal on the farm. I wonder why this is.
But now more than ever before, every member of the family must use his brains, must plan, must look ahead, must execute cheerfully—gladly; for necessary work, enthusiastically done, is happiness.
The desire of the present day, especially among the young folk, seems to be to get away from work, real work that brings out the sweat upon the brow; but this sweat-from-the-brow work is what God gave us to take the place of the lost Paradise. Not over-work, just work under the broad expanse of clouds, with the plow coaxing the good-germed earth to co-operate with seed and fertilizer, with rain and dew, with sun and heat to bring forth the harvest promised by God.
“Work,” says the country dweller, “is what we have always heard and still are hearing, but what about play?”
I’ll answer that question by saying that one of the most widely-known and most fascinating women who has ever dominated the “Four Hundred”—that exclusive coterie of New York’s socially elect—Mrs. Pembroke Jones, was born Sarah Wharton Green, daughter of Col. Wharton J. Green of Warren county, was reared on a Warren County Plantation, “Esmerelda,” and on a Cumberland County vineyard, “Tokay.” Her beautiful country estate, “Airlee-on-the-Sound” near Wrightsville is the springtime show place of North Carolina with its thousands and thousands of blooming azaleas.
Mrs. George Vanderbilt, though neither born nor reared in the country, loved her country estate, “Biltmore,” near Asheville, better than any of her estates or any of her city homes. She says that the greatest compliment that can be paid to her is to call her a country woman.
In the early days of America, especially in the South, practically every leading man in his native state was a farmer, living upon his own land and superintending his estate. There was then very little absentee landlordism. George Washington loved his life as a farmer at Mt. Vernon far more than he did his life as President of the United States in Washington City. Many of North Carolina’s early governors were large land-owners and farmers, but of recent years I can bring to mind only one farmer who became governor and that was Governor Elias Carr of Edgecombe County. Mrs. Carr was from the plantation also, one of the lovely daughters of William K. Kearney of Warren County. Governor Morrison, on his beautiful estate near Charlotte, can certainly qualify now as a genuine farmer, and our own beloved governor, J.C.B. Ehringhaus, has a potato farm!
One of the outstanding farmers and breeders of blooded cattle in North Carolina is  young George Watts Hill, grandson of George Watts, the noted millionaire philanthropist. “Quail Roose” is in Durham County near Durham and though George Watts Hill is not governor, there is mighty good prospects of his being the son of a governor should his father, Mr. John Sprunt Hill, so desire.
Paul Green, the playwright, of whom North Carolina is so proud, was born and reared on a Harnett County farm. He gives to us in his incisive plays the life struggles, the hopes, the superstitions, the loves of the country dweller, with all of which he is so familiar.
The outstanding figure, receiving almost an ovation at the last annual meeting of the North Carolina Literary and Historical Societies, was James Larkin Pearson of Wilkes County, who plows his own fields, tends his own stock, and gathers his own harvest. “A poor man, a small farmer,” he calls himself, yet a poet, a poet of distinction, called North Carolina’s Robert Burns. I know no more touching, no more appealing poem than his “Fifty Acres,” teeming with imagination and resignation as he pictures is 50 acres in this poem. I would that each country dweller might picture his farm, small or large, and thereby realize how much more he possesses than does the average town dweller with his daily grind, the desolate fear of a lost job, and the pitiful attempt at the pretense of prosperity.
So here goes another New Year’s greeting to every country dweller in the Old North State—a Happy and Healthful New Year.
Somebody told a homely child
That she was pretty when she smiled,
And something in her bosom stirred
Responsive to the friendly word.

The little girl was very quick
To learn that little smiling trick,
And all the ugly took its flight
Before her beaming new delight.

Next day the neighbors saw her pass
And said, “Who is that lovely lass?
And where’s that homely little Jane
That used to amble down the lane?”
                James Larkin Pearson*
*For more information on James Larkin Pearson of Wilkes County, Poet Laureate of North Carolina from Aug. 4, 1953, until his death on Aug. 27, 1981, go to

Friday, January 11, 2013

Mozelle Parker Recalls Growing Up in North Carolina, 1986

When Mozelle Parker began her year as state president of the North Carolina Extension Homemaker Association in 1986, she introduced herself in a column in the Jan.-March 1986 Tar Heel Homemakers. While much of the column talks about increasing membership, below is the section about her life, which I think people will find interesting.
I was born and reared in Cleveland County, the older daughter of the Reverend Joseph Wheeler Costner and Cora Lee Canley Costner of Lawndale and Fallston. I was graduated from the local schools and received my higher education at Gardner-Webb College, Appalachian State University and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I taught school in Burke, Gaston, and Scotland counties before taking early retirement to devote more time to civic and community service.
I grew up on a farm and experienced the daily chores around a rural home and on the farm, with my sister and two brothers. One of the many blessings in my life was to have been reared in a home where we had “family worship” each evening. The church, school, and home were sacred institutions during my formative years and are still a part of my life.
It was while I was quite young that I first went with my mother to the Piedmont Home Demonstration Club meetings at Lawndale. I knew and could see at that early age that this was “something special” for the ladies. A few years later, home economics classes in high school had more meaning and added to the excitement of my youth.
While teaching in Gaston County, I met and married Wright Fletcher Parker (W.F.). He was an Extension agent in the county at that time and came to my school to lead the 4-H program. Seven years later, we moved to our new home in Scotland County, Gibson, N.C., where we joined in the farming business with his family—a brother and father.
We still live on the farm with cotton and soybeans all around us. I leave the farming to them while I enjoy working with flowers and vegetables during the warmer months. When cold weather comes I move to my green house with a variety of flowers and to the fireside with a multitude of crafts.
I have been an Extension Homemaker for more than 30 years. I have served in every area of work and offices in my local association and county council and many on the district level. During these years as an Extension Homemaker, I have continuously received a wealth of information and knowledge and in turn I have shared this with others. This has brought joy and satisfaction to me and I hope has helped to enrich the lives of other.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

"When I Was a Little Girl" by Lena Bunch, 1993

“When I Was a Little Girl” by Lena Bunch, as published in Special Memories: A collection of stories by Chowan County Extension Homemakers. It was written in 1993 when Lena Bunch was 85 years old.
I remember going upstairs and then get on the rail and slide down; it was fun. I wore my hair cut short, parted in the middle and bangs across the front. All my dresses was homemade. When they was washed, they had to be starched and then they had to be ironed to make them look pretty.
When I was old enough to go to school, I was almost 7 years old and I had to walk to school every day one mile unless it was raining, then my daddy would carry us on a horse and cart. When it was really cold there was a lady lived half way to the school house and she would have a pan of warm water for us to put our hands in to warm them up. She was a sweet lady. We would go in her house to get warm and then we would go on to school and in the schoolhouse we had a wood heater to warm by.
We had to carry our dinner in a tin bucket. We would have a biscuit, sweet potato, sausage or sometime egg, sliced meat and about every day we would have apple jack or a tea cake, no drink unless you would go outside and get some water from the old hand pump.
Then we would play ring around the roses, or jump the rope. We would have one hour for lunch recess. The bell would ring, you had to get in line and march back in the school room. Then we would have more lessons. Lots of times we would write on the blackboard. The teacher would tell you what to write. Sometime you would know how to spell the words and sometime you did not know, then she would grade you for what you did.
I remember when I was 9 years old the older ones put on a play and they wanted me to be the little girl. The name of the play was Out On the Street and I was carried out on the street and left on a bench. It was cold and it began to snow and Bland Smith came along, saw me sitting there. She went and got a blanket and wrapped me up and then took me home with her. Leslie Peele, Dick Bunch, Elton Wilson wanted to do something for her to take care of me. Leslie took a hat and went around and said, “My bear he dances funny; I pass my hat and I get some money,” and from that the play went on. It was a cold street but I finally got warm. All of them have passed on except Blanch, Lessie, and Lena. That is something I cannot forget.
Back then I wore high top shoes with buttons on them, a long jacket and a stocking cap on you head. It was nice and warm. Look, now you go bareheaded.
I finally finished the 7th grade. There was five in my class and there are two of us now, Pearl and Lena, and we are still hanging on.
When I was a little girl I belonged to the Sunbeams. Mrs. Clara Ashley taught us. I still remember the song that we learned, “Jesus Wants Me for a Sunbeam.” I joined the Church when I was 12 years old and I am still a member at Rocky Hock Church for 73 years. After I left form the Sunbeams, I joined the G.A. and from there the WMU and I am still a member. I look forward to going once a month.
But, you can’t help but thinking about the years back, things you did, some of my sisters and brothers, how we go on the porch at night and play and sing, play guitar, banjo and I would play accordion. That was in our young days. That was before Lessie, Cora, Lloyd, Lindsey and Lena got married. Then we had lots of fun but after then we all got married and had to raise our children.
And in those days we had hog killings. Neighbors would help one another. Those days we saved almost everything of the hog, the chittlins and stuff them for our sausage, made Tom Thumbs, have big iron pots out in the yard, make a fire around them, put your meat where you had cut up the fat meat and make lard out of it. When it got done, we would set the pot off, put a little rosemary in it, dip it through the strainer into a tin can and that is what we used to make biscuits and other things that require grease and the cracklings was used to make crackling bread, and sometimes we would put some in the biscuits.
There was always several at your hog killing. You would cook a big dinner for all and then later you would have to start supper. You would always cook some of the refreshes for supper and lots of the school children would be there where their daddy and mothers was after school. But now, there are not too many parties, or taking trips. All that is fun, just to go out and eat, and I just like being with a crowd. I am just so thankful for all these years that I have been able to go and be with all of you.
Hope everyone will have a good 1994 year.
I love you all.

By Lena Bunch

Old age is golden, I’ve heard it said
But sometimes I wonder when I go to bed,
My ears in a drawer, my teeth in a cup,
My eyes on the table until I get up.
Then I wonder what else I could lay on the shelf,
Some folks might think you should lay there yourself.
But I am happy to say when I close my door,
My friends are the same as in days of yore.
When I was quite young my slippers were red.
Then I could kick my heels right over my head.
When I grew up my slippers was blue,
Then I could dance the whole night through.
Now that I’m old my slippers are black,
I walk to the corner and I puff my way back;
My get up and go have got up and went,
But I’m happy to say where my get up have been,
I get up in the morning and dust off my wit;
I pick up the paper and read the obituaries,
If my name is missing I know I’m not dead,
So I just eat my breakfast and go back to bed.