Lonnie Norcott

Lonnie Norcott

Lonnie Norcott

Heather White

Tueday, December 27, 2016
East Carolina University

[This text is machine generated and may contain errors.]

Heather White (00:00)
Okay, today is Tuesday December 27. And I'm here with Mr. Lonnie Norcott we're talking about the sycamore Hill area is it okay that I'm interviewing you today All right. So we were just wondering with the doing the project if you have any memories I know you had mentioned something about people getting baptized and some other areas out here if you'd like to share with us

Lonnie Norcott (00:23)
We had hanging tree down here. Remember exactly probably down here it was closer to the street side street is where the horse wants to have a pity system shut down to the bottom of it were exact spot I don't know where he's gone I got some pictures of NASA I got some old clippings out of McGil. and now I was told this areas are mostly black because the boats that transfer immersion that come up the river that places like harbor and they will come this was a landing spot to load and that's where why the black circle here because they forget and they had what they call our river we will call they will Washington all that makes down hope to come back then just a close knit community and most of the people that live in this area caught here by their relatives because they were so close really what's that what's that ahead everything in common it's so close I guess

Heather White (01:50)
And so you attended the church here as well

Lonnie Norcott (03:02)
Right right and the whole family. My uncle was an organist. I can't remember it's been so long.

Heather White (03:22)
Do you have any memories of when everything with the redevelopment got moved and urban

Lonnie Norcott (03:29)
Really living in a second well I was found and it really upset a lot of people depression man Oh, man most of his rental property we had a few Lambo and it made me really upset in fact I had almost summer in America a little upset doesn't Well yeah. Man had been an event for years and I think a lot of for both the readability is what really got the people they didn't do anything with ma'am after they're forced to move. We had a lot of blank merchants and just for Canvas doors fall which is most people know amongst us.

Heather White (04:52)
Then, you had mentioned with the church with it moving that the cemetery also without

Lonnie Norcott (05:01)
Cemetary has development came back I don't mean remembering cemetery or vanity of course I represent my family got they gave each family had to move their gravesite this either gave them lots of rebirth or whatever like Secretary when he came he came by our antibody is over there was upset me and my sister in law asked and system Berto ma'am I had been taken down there to show where my family o'clock work this this was considered a cross section of town for blacks black lawyers back down from Teesha can from different parts of the state they may have rent rooms or houses or whatever

Heather White (06:54)
It's wonderful so anything else that you can think that you'd like for us to know

Lonnie Norcott (06:59)
Yeah, I remember when part of Evans street was cobblestone.

Heather White (07:09)

Lonnie Norcott (07:10)
That was when the Army, that was just a small portion where they did you know, paver asphalt or was gonna kind of stuck in my mouth.

Well, we're just appreciative of all of you sharing your stories and everybody will remember what this area was and all of that. Well, you can always well, we'll come back and talk to you anytime. All right, well, I'm gonna stop the recording for right now.Thanks.

Lonnie Norcott
Photographs of Lonnie Norcott taken at the Town Common, Greenville, N.C., accompanied by an oral history interview, for the Beyond Bricks and Mortar project. Mr. Norcott is a former resident of the Shore Drive neighborhood, that was destroyed in the 1960's to make room for the Town Common Park. Mr. Norcott recalls stories told to him by his grandfather about boats unloading merchandise from Tarboro. The black community settled in this area because they could get jobs unloading the boats. He reminisces about the close-knit community he experienced as a child. Mr. Norcott attended Sycamore Hill Missionary Baptist Church with his entire family, where his uncle was the church organist. He recalls that the redevelopment process upset many people who had had land for years. It also negatively affected the black merchants in the downtown area, many of whom never recovered. The downtown area had been a prosperous section of town for the African American community. Interviewer: Heather White.
December 27, 2016
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oral histories
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