Interview with David J. Whichard II and Stuart Savage

Date: Jan. 14 2009 | Identifier: 1295
Interview with David J. Whichard II and Stuart Savage. David J. Whichard II was a past editor and photographer at the Daily Reflector. Stuart Savage was a news reporter at the Daily Reflector. The interview describes their experiences in Greenville, N.C. as well as specific experiences working for the Daily Reflector. more...
Video
Read/Search



Interview with past editor and photographer at the Daily Reflector
Interviewee:David J. Whichard, II, and Stuart Savage
Interviewer:Chris Oakley and Dale Sauter
Date of Interview:January 14, 2009
Location:Greenville, N.C.
Length:Approximately 41 minutes



Chris Oakley:

Good afternoon. Welcome to Joyner Library. I'd like to thank the two of you for agreeing to sit down with us today. First I thought that I would ask you to just briefly introduce yourselves, tell us a little bit about your experience at the Greenville Reflector, when you worked there and what you did and so forth.

Stuart Savage:

I'm Stuart Savage. I have been there as of this coming March fifty years. [Points to Mr. Whichard] And he hired me.

Dale Sauter:

It's his fault.

Chris Oakley:

And over the years what different things have you done there?

Stuart Savage:

Started off as a photographer then moved to news writing.

Chris Oakley:

So I imagine you took most of the photos we're going to be looking at and discussing.

Stuart Savage:

I took some of them, not most of them.

Chris Oakley:

Okay.

David Whichard:

My name's Dave Whichard. I started with the Reflector full time in 1948 and retired in 1996. I worked as a kid in the press room, and that sort of thing. When I came back in '48 I was in the newsroom and did news editorials for a number of years, and then was publishing the paper in my latter years there.

Chris Oakley:

The "Seeds of Change" project that Dale has put together really focuses on the period from 1949 to 1967, particularly how Greenville, Pitt County, and the Daily Reflector changed during those years. When thinking back to this post-war period, how do you think that the area and the Reflector changed?

David Whichard:

The whole technology of producing newspapers changed at least twice during that period. The newspaper's grown; the community's grown. Back in the '40s



Greenville was probably fifteen, twenty thousand people, maybe a little less. I don't think it would be twenty thousand. But, you know, it was a small newspaper, three or four thousand circulation in the '40s, and it began to grow after the war as everything else did. And there's been a vast change, as I say, in the technology from hot metal to cold type and now to all that is done with the digital system. [To Mr. Savage] You know more about that than I do.

Stuart Savage:

When I started we used film, four by five Speed Graphic cameras, and today we don't use film. It's all digital. There's been a tremendous change photographically.

Chris Oakley:

Do you guys remember anything specific, significant changes at the paper, during that time period? You moved offices, I think, during that time period, right? Wasn't there a new office that opened on Evans Street? I believe it was.

David Whichard:

The building was on Evans Street, at the corner of Evans and Third Street. In 1956 we moved to a new building on Cotanche Street between Second and Third Streets. Is that right, Stuart? Yeah. And that location was the location of the Reflector for I guess twenty or thirty years until they built the present facility in the industrial park. But the one on Cotanche Street was expanded and expanded until it took almost that whole block.

Stuart Savage:

It's now ECU's computer center.

Chris Oakley:

Oh, is it? Okay. Are there any particular events or issues that you distinctly remember covering from that era? For example, do you remember when JFK came to Greenville in 1960, and how did people in Greenville sort of react to that?

Stuart Savage:

It was sort of a big deal.



Chris Oakley:

How were people in Greenville reacting to that, because this is the first time a presidential candidate had ever come to Greenville, at least that I know of. I don't know if there had been--.

David Whichard:

It was, yes.

Chris Oakley:

Was there a lot of excitement in the town? Were there any people that were, I don't want to say opposed to this, but were sort of seeing it maybe negatively, or was this just kind of the whole town was very excited about this?

Stuart Savage:

I think the town was excited about it.

David Whichard:

Yeah, I think everybody was excited about it. An event in Greenville was an event for Eastern North Carolina, so they had a lot of people from a lot of different towns, not just Greenville. And he spoke right up here about three hundred yards in the area behind what is now McGinnis Theater over there, what used to be the Training School where I went to school as a kid, and you probably did too, Stuart. [Mr. Savage nods] It was still there. It's been there a long time. But that's where the event was. That's where the first football field was. That's where they had Kennedy's event here. But it was a big deal, no question about that.

Chris Oakley:

Did you take the photographs of when Kennedy came?

Stuart Savage:

Some of them, yeah.

Chris Oakley:

Do you remember any of them in particular? Do you remember--? Did you go to--? I think you went to a tobacco warehouse, right--

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

Chris Oakley:

--for an auction or something? Do you remember that at all? Were you there for that?



Stuart Savage:

The warehouse was full of people.

Chris Oakley:

Right, right. I think we have some really good photos of that which will be on the website. How did--? I guess it was ECTC and then at some point in the 1950s it became East Carolina College. How did the University change during those years, or the College change, during those years?

David Whichard:

East Carolina went from an institution with--I've forgotten what the enrollment was. It was about--.

Stuart Savage:

It was five thousand. When I went here it was five thousand. I graduated in '59.

David Whichard:

Yeah. But probably in '46 or '47 it was about twelve hundred maybe, maybe not that many. And it probably had during the war less than two hundred men on the campus. All of them were women. They had the Wright Building and most of the activities went on in Wright. They didn't have any of these buildings in this area. The dining hall was over here.

Stuart Savage:

That was the westernmost.

David Whichard:

The westernmost part of the campus. All this was woods. We called it the College Woods. When we were kids growing up in Greenville and playing over here, between here and Reade Circle, I guess, there wasn't anything over here. It was a beautiful wooded area, had a lake down here near where Tenth Street is. But it was quite different.

Chris Oakley:

Did the community really accept the growth of Greenville? Was there any tension or conflict between "town and gown," as they--?



David Whichard:

I don't think so. Greenville's always been very, very supportive of East Carolina, and it was during those years. I don't remember any tension or difficulty or that sort of thing that was very significant. Do you, Stuart?

Stuart Savage:

No, not at all.

Dale Sauter:

One thing I thought to ask, in retrospect do you guys see any social and economic changes maybe that were not covered so much by the newspaper that you thought, you know, looking back, that should have been?

David Whichard:

Well I'm sure we missed a lot of things that went on, but we were involved in a lot of things too.

Dale Sauter:

Sure.

David Whichard:

It was a farm economy then.

Dale Sauter:

Right.

David Whichard:

An agricultural, purely agricultural, in Pitt County. Pitt County was--. We were the first or the third, depending on how the crops were, in agricultural production in North Carolina every year, primarily because we were the largest tobacco-producing county in the world, or in the United States--and in the world, for that matter--during those years. And that's about what we grew. We grew a little cotton, some soybeans, some corn, but it was an agricultural community and an agricultural county. There wasn't much industry. The industry started coming here--. With the exception of one textile plant and other things like that the industry started coming here, I guess, in the early to middle '50s. And that's when we began to develop an industrial base.

Chris Oakley:

So one of things that Dale did with this is he actually titled it "Seeds of Change," based on the idea that it was during this time where you begin to see the start of



that transformation from Greenville, which as you said was overwhelmingly agricultural, to a mixed economy of industry and agriculture. It seems like you're saying this process started in the 1950s.

David Whichard:

It did.

Chris Oakley:

Is that about right?

Stuart Savage:

Mm hmm.

David Whichard:

And Greenville was the smallest of the towns in this area. If you think about it, Rocky Mount was larger; Kinston was larger; Goldsboro was larger; Wilson was larger. We were larger than Washington and Tarboro. But all those other communities were much larger communities than Greenville was at that time, probably until about 1960 it began to change.

Chris Oakley:

And was that because of the new industry coming in, and the College?

David Whichard:

Well, it was because of the industry coming in, and the University growing, the economy changing, the structure of the community economically was changing. Greenville just has seen more change in the last forty years or fifty years than any of these other communities have.

Chris Oakley:

And the other ones are struggling.

David Whichard:

A number of them are, yeah.

Chris Oakley:

Like if you go to downtown Wilson or Rocky Mount or any of these places now, they are really--.

David Whichard:

But New Bern's doing well. New Bern's always done well. Although it wasn't one of the largest communities it's done well. Kinston's probably had the



toughest time of all. Goldsboro's had the air base there. That stabilized that and continued to make Goldsboro grow.

Chris Oakley:

I noticed one thing. When we were looking through the photographs I was stunned at how many of them were related to the actual expansion of infrastructure. I mean there were so many photographs of paving roads, new buildings, construction, redoing the airport, the hospital. It just seemed to me that during this time it was, as you say, a period where Greenville was literally rebuilding itself.

David Whichard:

Yeah. Well that was when the first hospital was built then, because when we were growing up the hospital was over on Johnston Street.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

And there were a few apartments, but it wasn't a very large hospital. But it was in the late '40s or early '50s we built a hospital out near where the hospital is now. It's what's now the--

Stuart Savage:

County office building.

David Whichard:

--county office building. It was built with Hill-But--Hills-Burton--Hill-Burton--that was the law--Hill-Burton money that was the federal matching funds for that. Pitt County had a bond issued that's--and I've forgotten what it was for, maybe a million dollars?

Stuart Savage:

Not a lot--.

David Whichard:

Not a lot of money, maybe less than that. I think the whole hospital cost about three million dollars or something like that. But that was in the days when it was hard to pass a bond issue because you voted against the registration and not against the people going to the polls. There was a lot of hard work by a lot of leaders all over the



county to make sure that bond issue passed. And that was the beginning of the medical center.

Chris Oakley:

Right, which has meant so much, I mean the whole thing has meant so much to Greenville the past thirty years or so. Another thing we noticed is--I just was struck by this--is how much of the coverage was devoted to things that related to the automobile: new highway patrolmen; new equipment; new roads. It seems like there was just a long string of photographs related to the automobile, and I was just wondering if you guys could discuss a little bit about how cars and automobiles changed Greenville, because it seems to me probably before World War II very few people in town had one, and by the 1950s and '60s, you know, obviously many families had them, and it just seemed to change the town tremendously.

Stuart Savage:

After the war when cars became plentiful, and not only cars but tractors and everything else, replaced mules and--.

David Whichard:

And carts.

Stuart Savage:

Carts.

David Whichard:

Wagons.

Chris Oakley:

Now you need policemen. Now you need better paved roads and bridges and the town begins to--. The business, it's not just all focused on the downtown area now. You begin to see that growth outward a little bit to shopping centers and so forth. It seems the entire landscape of Greenville begins to change in this time.

David Whichard:

Well it did, because all of eastern North Carolina was very severely impacted by the Depression. And Greenville, like most of the other towns in eastern North Carolina, really didn't start getting out of that until after World War II. There



wasn't any development and that sort of thing during the War. You didn't have anything to develop with. Everybody was gone. So while the Depression was in the '30s, eastern North Carolina really didn't begin to dig out of it until the late '40s and early--mid-'40s and early '50s. And that's when you saw the big change in--. As you say, agricultural went from mules and plows to machinery and that sort of thing. The automobile was here; started talking about airplanes a little bit, and that sort of thing.

Chris Oakley:

Yeah, I've done some research--.

David Whichard:

The University was growing.

Chris Oakley:

Right.

David Whichard:

East Carolina was growing, which was what impacted Greenville.

Chris Oakley:

Right. Well I've done some research in census figures, and one thing I noticed in eastern North Carolina, if you look at the census data from 1950, more than fifty percent of the residents in eastern North Carolina were in some way linked to agriculture. By 1970 it was down to about fifteen percent. Another decade it was down to about five percent. So within thirty years you're talking about a region where the majority of the population somehow directly linked to agriculture to thirty years later it being a very small percentage. That's a dramatic change in thirty years.

David Whichard:

It was.

Stuart Savage:

The hospital became the biggest payroll in the county as opposed to agriculture.

David Whichard:

That's right.

Dale Sauter:

I just wondered--the anniversary issue for the Daily Reflector. I remember reading you guys talking about some of the social changes that happened in this area and



maybe what role the newspaper played in it. Could you kind of talk a little bit about what role the newspaper played in it, maybe to possibly make that change happen or cover the change itself?

David Whichard:

We had a lot of change and a lot of different coverage. We covered Klan rallies. [To Mr. Savage] Do you remember that? You did some of that. They'd be interested to hear you talk about that.

Chris Oakley:

Yes, we would actually.

Stuart Savage:

I've covered several Klan rallies, and they were--. Actually you put the Southern Christian Leadership Conference and the NAACP and the Klan all together and one would fall out of the bag just as quick as the other one. They were all radical at that time.

David Whichard:

Yeah.

Dale Sauter:

Would you say this area was maybe a little bit behind as far as the cycle--well, obviously to bigger cities--but in terms of--?

David Whichard:

Other parts of the state? No. We were probably--

Dale Sauter:

About the same?

David Whichard:

--the same pace, had the same thing in the Piedmont and in the mountains in those years.

Dale Sauter:

Okay.

David Whichard:

In the '50s and '60s we dealt with desegregation of the schools, doing away with segregation in the schools, and the facilities and that sort of thing. We were fortunate in Greenville. We had good leadership, both the white leadership and the black leadership. We had good leadership and they were able to work together and meld



together and just create a lot of good situations that sort of helped us get through the time. It was a very tough time for everybody.

Dale Sauter:

Sure. I can imagine.

David Whichard:

That was when Gene West was mayor. That's when we really got the change. D.D. Garrett's still here. He was a very big part of that. He and I worked together--. He and I went to--. At one point we said, all right, we've got to deal somehow with the eating arrangements. So I guess Gene West, the mayor, kind of set it up and went and talked to folks and said we need to integrate your restaurant, or your eating place. And so two of us would go together, like D.D. and I went together to one to eat. The guy knew--the restaurant owner knew--we were coming. We sat down at a table, ordered and ate. I don't know that we enjoyed the meal, but at least we got through it.

Dale Sauter:

A little stressful.

David Whichard:

But I mean that kind of thing. And there were a lot of people that did that, and that sort of helped get through it. There weren't any demonstrations about the schools here that I can remember.

Stuart Savage:

[Shakes his head]

David Whichard:

I had three children in the public schools then and they all got along well.

Chris Oakley:

Do you remember a particular Klan rally that you went to cover? Was this in Greenville or was it like outside Pitt County?

Stuart Savage:

Outside in Pitt County. I guess my most memorable one was one down on 43 toward New Bern. One of the television photographers was right beside me and he got



hit in the head with a--. Apparently somebody shot him with a ball bearing from a slingshot, at least that's what we all thought.

David Whichard:

That was in the '50s, wasn't it, or the '60s, probably in the '60s.

Stuart Savage:

Early '60s, probably.

David Whichard:

Yeah.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, I think the little story, kind of like the one you told, you and D.D. Garrett, are of interest, if any of those pop out to you. Of course maybe they will when you see the images as well.

David Whichard:

But we had problems here. We--you know. We had a public swimming pool. And it needed repair because it was built during the '30s, I guess, [Looks at Mr. Savage and he nods] maybe the early '40s. And it needed repair and they were trying to decide what to do with it, and rather than building a new pool that would obviously be integrated they just decided, well, we're going to close down this pool and not build another one. And it was probably four or five years before that second pool was built.

Stuart Savage:

Probably longer than that.

David Whichard:

Maybe six, seven years. But there weren't, you know, there were problems. It was a--. I think Greenville got along as well--the County got along as well--or better than other people around here.

Stuart Savage:

Mm hmm.

Chris Oakley:

Do you think there's any particular reason for that, or anything about Pitt County that made the transformation smoother here than perhaps elsewhere?

David Whichard:

I don't know. I don't know what it was. Everybody--. Well I think here we had good leadership. I'm sure the other communities had good leadership, too, because



there weren't really many problems in the towns around here. The state tried a lot of different kind of different things about how we're going to handle segregation, but we worked through it. We weren't like Virginia that closed their schools and that sort of thing. And so we had good leadership at the state level as well as good leadership in most of the communities, I think.

Stuart Savage:

I think the rural parts and smaller towns were worse than cities like Greenville.

David Whichard:

It was. You're right. The more rural the area the more difficult it was, I think.

Chris Oakley:

Not as good leadership, perhaps, not as good people able to lead--well-educated people to lead--perhaps in smaller towns. That's just a guess.

Stuart Savage:

I don't know.

Chris Oakley:

Do you guys want to take a look at some photos?

David Whichard:

Yes, sir, whatever you like.

Dale Sauter:

All right.

David Whichard:

What do you want us to do, go through here?

Chris Oakley:

Yeah, and just, you know, if you see something that interests you, or--.

David Whichard:

Well I think we agreed that's old Wright Auditorium where they're playing basketball.

Chris Oakley:

Is that the first place that they started playing basketball as sort of official college sports?

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.



David Whichard:

Yeah. That was the place for everything. That was the only place we had.

Chris Oakley:

Do you remember when ECU first started--or ECTC/ECC--first started competing in, I guess, official NCAA sports? Was that the '50s?

David Whichard:

I don't know that we knew anything about the NCAA then.

Chris Oakley:

I don't think it technically existed then, to be honest.

David Whichard:

I don't know. East Carolina had a football team in the--'40s?

Stuart Savage:

[Nodding]Forties.

David Whichard:

I think it was in the '40s, or a basketball team, probably before then. Didn't have much teams in the '40s because all the men were gone.

Chris Oakley:

You only need five to play basketball, but you--.

David Whichard:

I'm not sure they had a men's basketball team or football team during the war years. But I know they had teams during the '30s, the late '30s.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

Because that's when I think Bill Greene was on the team. Who was the guy that was Herbert Bonner's administrative assistant?

Stuart Savage:

Jack?

David Whichard:

No, Jack--no.

Stuart Savage:

Oh--Henry Ogles . . . ? No.

David Whichard:

I can't think of his name either. Stuart, you're young.

David Whichard:

You're supposed to be--those names. But he was on--. Oglesby, Ray Oglesby--not Ray.

Stuart Savage:

Henry.



David Whichard:

Henry. No. Ray was the auctioneer, wasn't he?

Stuart Savage:

Ray was the auctioneer.

David Whichard:

And his brother.

Stuart Savage:

Henry.

David Whichard:

Henry, yeah. He was on the first football team, which was probably in the late '30s. And that's St. James, nothing around. That's all built up now. This was on Fifth Street about three blocks east--. It was on Sixth Street, about three blocks east of the University. I know where that was. That was--.

David Whichard:

Yeah. Had all the--around Christmastime.

Dale Sauter:

That was really kind of a big thing, wasn't it, apparently?

Stuart Savage:

That looks like the old hospital.

David Whichard:

Well, it may be. But that is Dr. Brooks, isn't it, Dr. Fred Brooks? I bet it is. I think that's who it is.

Stuart Savage:

Probably.

David Whichard:

Huh? [Looks at Mr. Savage; he nods] That's who that is. And that was--I don't where that was taken. That could be in the hospital. But I bet that's who that is.

Stuart Savage:

And Joyner Library.

David Whichard:

Yeah. Looks like the grain storage out there at [inaudible].

Stuart Savage:

Either that or the place in Farmville.

David Whichard:

Yeah, I though about that, yeah. That's probably where it is, out there at Farmville manufacturing plant. Now, look at that. That looks like Ramona Van Nortwick.

Stuart Savage:

That's Ramona.



David Whichard:

It's bound to be. And I don't know who she is. That must be a Miss Greenville pageant or something.

Chris Oakley:

Those seem to be very popular too. We ran into a lot of photographs of beauty pageants and various things in the '50s and '60s.

David Whichard:

Yeah. I don't know who that is.

Stuart Savage:

I have no idea.

David Whichard:

The fair.

Dale Sauter:

That was a big deal, I guess.

Stuart Savage:

Evans Street in Greenville

David Whichard:

Yeah, looking south.

Stuart Savage:

That's Port Terminal.

David Whichard:

Yeah. I've forgotten whose boat's in there, but that's what that is, down at the port. We had a port on Hardee's Creek, which is out here about a mile and a half, and it was just a shallow-water, a port that started--. I guess Bruce Sugg was the one that got that going in the '50s and '60s, and they operated for awhile.

Stuart Savage:

The late '40s. They brought sugar in during the '40s, I think.

David Whichard:

More beauty pageants. I don't know who that is.

Stuart Savage:

I think he's one of the evangelists that was here.

David Whichard:

He looks like an evangelist, before TV.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

Huh. Do you remember him?

Stuart Savage:

Solomon Gibbs, absolutely.

David Whichard:

Yeah.



Stuart Savage:

Our police chief.

David Whichard:

Tobacco.

Dale Sauter:

A great tobacconist . . .

David Whichard:

That must have been--.

David Whichard:

That is--.

Stuart Savage:

H.B. Lilly.

David Whichard:

H.B. Lilly, yeah. He was an ABC officer. They're raiding a still.

Dale Sauter:

Oh, yeah, the stills, yeah. That was--.

Chris Oakley:

We saw a number of those.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah.

Chris Oakley:

I guess moonshining was still a big business in Pitt County in the '50s.

Stuart Savage:

I used to help them blow up stills. That was a lot of fun.

David Whichard:

I don't know who that is. That's part of the parade. I like that car. That's a great car, isn't it?

Dale Sauter:

It sure is.

David Whichard:

Overton's Supermarket. That's on Jarvis Street.

Stuart Savage:

That's the hospital back in the back.

David Whichard:

Yeah, that's the old hospital right there.

Dale Sauter:

Okay.

David Whichard:

I don't know who she is.

Dale Sauter:

--evolution of agriculture.

David Whichard:

Yeah. That was probably seed or fertilizer. Can you see these?

Chris Oakley:

Yes.



David Whichard:

And that's a tobacco cart. That's what they used to bring the tobacco in. Rock Hudson. That was the old Pitt Theater that's gone. That's some women working in one of the tobacco processing plants. Billy Griffin. He's the guy that designed that first building on Cotanche Street. That's the old building on Evans Street. Is that the--?

Stuart Savage:

That's the Memorial Drive Bridge, I think.

David Whichard:

Yeah.

Stuart Savage:

Before they four-laned it.

David Whichard:

Yeah.

Dale Sauter:

It looks relatively new.

David Whichard:

We got another still. That's a big still. We had a lot of parades.

Chris Oakley:

Yes, you did. That was one thing we noticed. There was a lot of public celebrations, seems like more than there are now. [Mr. Savage nods]

Dale Sauter:

Yeah. It does seem like it was a bigger deal back then.

Chris Oakley:

There was more for people to get out and do downtown.

David Whichard:

That's a great shot. This is probably that old hotel right there.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

It's taken from the top of the courthouse.

Stuart Savage:

Top of the courthouse.

Chris Oakley:

Stuart, do you remember taking any of these? Do you see anything that you: oh, I remember taking that one?

Stuart Savage:

Not of these particularly, but I--. There's a lot of them in there.



Dale Sauter:

Actually, while I'm thinking about it, the ones you didn't take, did you guys do much for hire, excuse me, for hire photographers, or was there just a few other guys besides you that--?

David Whichard:

He was it. We all took pictures of the news--.

Stuart Savage:

I was it from '59 until up in the '60s [?], probably.

Dale Sauter:

Okay. I was just curious about the ones you didn't take, if they were just maybe people you, you know, that did it for--.

Stuart Savage:

No, they were staff people.

Dale Sauter:

Just staff.

Stuart Savage:

Roy Hardee.

Dale Sauter:

Okay.

Stuart Savage:

Alvin Taylor.

Dale Sauter:

Okay.

Chris Oakley:

So everyone was a photographer back then.

David Whichard:

Yeah, everybody was. I used to take pictures too.

Dale Sauter:

That's interesting.

David Whichard:

I don't know who they are, Stuart. It must have been--.

Stuart Savage:

I don't either.

David Whichard:

--something to do with politics, because that's right in front of the courthouse on Third Street. That must have been a new farm-

Stuart Savage:

Tobacco sprayer.

David Whichard:

--sprayer or something, yeah. That's in Wright.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.



David Whichard:

That must be East Carolina's graduation--

Chris Oakley:

Yes.

David Whichard:

--in Wright Auditorium.

Stuart Savage:

Making bread at Sunbeam Bakery.

David Whichard:

Is that what that was? Yeah. Now, that must have been a cane processing or something, where you had the mule doing the thing, and the guy feeding cane, and the syrup coming out there. [Mr. Savage nods] Must have been sugar cane, but I don't remember our growing much sugar cane. Would it have been corn?

Stuart Savage:

Right toward the end of the Second World War, I think there was--

David Whichard:

Some sugar cane.

Stuart Savage:

--some sugar cane grown.

David Whichard:

That's probably what--. That's what it looks like. That's the old bridge.

Dale Sauter:

That's the one--

Stuart Savage:

That's the bridge at Grimesland, I think.

Dale Sauter:

Oh. That's the one they just moved.

David Whichard:

Yeah, that's the Grimesland Bridge.

Stuart Savage:

That draw came from either New Bern or Morehead.

David Whichard:

The drawbridge?

Stuart Savage:

The draw span, yeah.

David Whichard:

Mm hmm. That's Jarvis, isn't it, Jarvis Memorial Baptist--.

Stuart Savage:

Methodist.

David Whichard:

Methodist Church. I don't know what that is.

Dale Sauter:

Probably--



David Whichard:

Building somewhere?

Dale Sauter:

--a University building.

Stuart Savage:

it looks like--

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, we like to put a lot of the snow scenes in there because it seems like now people say we don't get so much snow as we used to.

Stuart Savage:

We don't.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah. That's what everybody tells you.

David Whichard:

I don't know what that is.

Stuart Savage:

That's Elm Street Park.

David Whichard:

Oh, yeah, okay.

Dale Sauter:

One other thing I was curious about too, like earlier on there's a lot of coroner photos, which of course won't be in there. Was that more of just they needed you guys to do it?

Stuart Savage:

Uh huh, took--. I took all the pictures for the police department.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah. Most of those obviously wouldn't end up in the newspaper, though.

Stuart Savage:

Some of them did.

Dale Sauter:

Some would and some wouldn't? Okay.

Stuart Savage:

It just depends.

David Whichard:

Most of them--. You were just doing it for them because they needed the pictures.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

Dale Sauter:

That's what I was thinking. Yeah, okay. I was curious about that.



David Whichard:

That's June Rose, who was superintendent of the Greenville Schools, and D.H. Conley, who was superintendent of the Pitt County Schools, and that is--what was her name?--the librarian.

Stuart Savage:

I can't think of her name.

David Whichard:

I forgot too. I knew her. We were good friends and I can't remember her name.

Dale Sauter:

One of the first bookmobiles, you think maybe, in the area?

David Whichard:

Pardon me?

Dale Sauter:

Maybe one of the first bookmobiles in the area, you think? [Mr. Savage nods]

David Whichard:

Probably, and that was with Sheppard Memorial Library.

Dale Sauter:

Okay.

David Whichard:

She was the librarian there for a long time. I don't know what that is, Stuart.

Stuart Savage:

One of the VOA sites. That was the guy who--.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, that does sound familiar.

David Whichard:

What?

Stuart Savage:

One of the VOA sites.

David Whichard:

Oh, VOA, yeah. He was the guy that was head of it. I'd forgotten that. I don't know any of them. Well--.

David Whichard:

That's Nat Van Nortwick. It's bound to be.

Stuart Savage:

It surely is, isn't it?

David Whichard:

Yeah.

Dale Sauter:

Was that--? That's not at the courthouse, is it?

David Whichard:

I bet that's the KAs.



Dale Sauter:

Okay, yeah.

David Whichard:

I bet that's exactly what it is.

Stuart Savage:

Might well be.

David Whichard:

I don't know how old he would have been there, but he's probably--. I bet that's what it is.

Stuart Savage:

He looks mighty young.

David Whichard:

The Pitt County fair. Was that the old school?

Stuart Savage:

I think so.

David Whichard:

The one down here? [Mr. Savage nods]

Dale Sauter:

I remember something in there labeled that way.

David Whichard:

Yeah. Well it looks like it's well-kept like that one is. [Mr. Savage nods] Now that was politics. That's Kennedy.

Dale Sauter:

That's a good one, yeah.

David Whichard:

Skipper Bowles, Terry Sanford, Sam Ervin--.

Stuart Savage:

Luther Hodges.

David Whichard:

Luther Hodges and--what was his name? He was the one before Luther who was from Durham. I can't remember his name. I don't know where that's taken. Where is that?

Stuart Savage:

Looks like the White House.

David Whichard:

Well, it could be.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, there were some in there labeled, you know, when you guys went to Washington.

David Whichard:

Well that's probably what it was.



Dale Sauter:

So that's probably, yeah.

David Whichard:

He was in the Senate then. Hah! I like that.

Dale Sauter:

We thought those were kind of interesting.

David Whichard:

I don't know what that--. It must have been a--

Stuart Savage:

Snow storm.

David Whichard:

A what?

Stuart Savage:

Snow storm.

David Whichard:

Ah. That's the Wright Fountain.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, it got really cold, didn't it?

Stuart Savage:

I've seen the Tar River frozen a couple of times.

David Whichard:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

Wonder what that was?

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, the old Hardee's.

Stuart Savage:

The old Hardee's.

David Whichard:

The original Hardee's.

Stuart Savage:

Original Hardee's.

David Whichard:

The first Hardee's.

Dale Sauter:

I kind of got interested in that.

Chris Oakley:

He passed away last year, two years ago?

Dale Sauter:

Not long ago, yeah.

David Whichard:

Yeah about--a couple years ago. Maybe it was last year.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, he's--. I read his book that he did. It's an interesting story.

Stuart Savage:

That girl's the Rogers girl, Rogers Warehouse.



David Whichard:

Oh, yeah.

Stuart Savage:

I can't think of her name.

David Whichard:

Yeah. I don't know who that is. Is that you up there speaking?

Stuart Savage:

Not me.

Dale Sauter:

Introducing Kennedy, maybe.

David Whichard:

I wonder who they are. You took a lot of pictures of a lot of pretty girls, Stuart.

Dale Sauter:

Can't blame you there.

David Whichard:

Tobacco.

Dale Sauter:

Fireworks.

David Whichard:

We're celebrating.

Dale Sauter:

I don't know if y'all just had them on the Fourth of July, or--? Do you remember?

Stuart Savage:

Probably Fourth of July.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah. I thought that was a good one.

David Whichard:

That was a good one. That must have been of the new hospital when it opened.

Stuart Savage:

Probably.

David Whichard:

The incubators.

Dale Sauter:

These were--

Stuart Savage:

That's Sam Winchester [?].

David Whichard:

Sam Winchester [?], yea

Dale Sauter:

--Asian dealers coming in for--.



David Whichard:

And they must have had some Oriental visitors there.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah. That was interesting.

David Whichard:

I don't know what that was. Somebody had problems. That was the guy from Washington who spoke--. That's Herbert Bonner-

Stuart Savage:

Herbert Bonner over here.

David Whichard:

--right there. He was the Congressman for a long time. What was that guy's name from Washington? He was a great speaker. I've forgotten what his--he was from Little Washington--I've forgotten what his name was.

Dale Sauter:

Yeah, there was a few architectural drawings where you guys had re-shot and I thought, wow, that could be a significant--.

David Whichard:

That's probably an old--.

David Whichard:

An old street layout.

David Whichard:

Was that when they were doing Reade Circle, you think?

Stuart Savage:

I don't know.

David Whichard:

Well it shows--. It shows the old Eighth Street right there. I think that's what it is. It must be.

Stuart Savage:

That's--

Stuart Savage:

King.

David Whichard:

Charlie King.

Stuart Savage:

Charlie King.

David Whichard:

I've forgotten what his name was. I don't know what they were building there, but it was a big place. I bet that was the stadium.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.



Dale Sauter:

The stadium, okay.

David Whichard:

Yeah, that's what that was. Governor Jarvis, he was the governor of the state who helped put East Carolina here. [Pause] What was that?

Stuart Savage:

Somebody hanging.

David Whichard:

They hung somebody in effigy. I don't know what that was. It was at a school, obviously, so it must have been when they were integrating the schools, is that right?

Stuart Savage:

Probably.

Dale Sauter:

Could be.

David Whichard:

Here. [Turning the screen toward Mr. Oakley] That's what we were talking about, right there.

Chris Oakley:

Oh, yeah.

Dale Sauter:

I remember seeing that one, but I wasn't quite sure.

David Whichard:

The next one's the kids going to school.

Stuart Savage:

The first bombing of a public school in the United States was in Pitt County.

Dale Sauter:

No kidding? Is that right?

Stuart Savage:

Ayden-Grifton High School.

Chris Oakley:

When was that? Do you remember what year?

Stuart Savage:

Back in the '60s.

David Whichard:

Was that at Grifton?

Stuart Savage:

[Nodding]Ayden-Grifton High School.

Dale Sauter:

I didn't know that.

David Whichard:

Is that Phoebe Dale?



Stuart Savage:

I don't know.

David Whichard:

It looks a little like her. That's David Reid.

Stuart Savage:

David Reid. [Pause] George Gardner--.

David Whichard:

And that's Phil Goodson.

Stuart Savage:

Phil, yeah.

David Whichard:

Grady Nichols.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

With one of his bird dogs. I don't know who that is.

Stuart Savage:

Oh, what's his name?

David Whichard:

Oh, that was the game warden.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

Ah--.

David Mayo:

Joe Teel.

David Whichard:

Jay--.

Stuart Savage:

Used to live out there by [inaudible].

David Mayo:

That's my uncle.

Dale Sauter:

Oh, is that right?

David Mayo:

Yeah.

Chris Oakley:

That's his uncle.

Dale Sauter:

So that was his uncle.

David Whichard:

Who is?

David Mayo:

Joe Teel.



Stuart Savage:

Yeah, Joe Teel.

David Whichard:

Joe Teel, yeah. That's who it was.

Dale Sauter:

Everybody's involved.

David Whichard:

Have you seen Joe's picture? You better come look at it.

David Mayo:

Yeah, I scanned it actually.

David Whichard:

I bet it's Grady Nichols' bird dog. That's Leo and Frank Wooten. I don't know who the one on the left is. Well, I can't see those. They [inaudible].

Stuart Savage:

That's the old high school, the old Greenville High School downtown.

David Whichard:

Yeah. [To Mr. Sauter] Can we bring it up?

Dale Sauter:

This one's kind of small. I don't know. Joe?

Joe Barricella:

There might have been a couple that they saved a little funny.

David Whichard:

Right.

Joe Barricella:

So just skip it.

David Whichard:

You know what; I've forgotten what his name was. That was when we were putting up the shelters.

Stuart Savage:

The shelters.

Dale Sauter:

The Cold War.

David Whichard:

That's June Rose right there, bound to be. That old bank's gone. That was at the corner of Dickinson Avenue and Pitt Street, wasn't it, looking northeast. That's that one we were talking about. Yeah, that's right. We've gone through them all.

Dale Sauter:

You sure did, yeah.

Chris Oakley:

So after looking at those and everything, how do you think that--? A lot of people are going to be looking at these photos. There are going to be students of mine,



high school students, other students, who, this is a different world for them. How do you think that looking at these photos and looking at how Greenville has changed will sort of help teachers, students, and so forth--? That's really what this project is about in many ways is showing the origin of how Greenville changed during this era.

David Whichard:

I think it would be helpful if--and you may be doing this--if you could have some approximate dates.

Chris Oakley:

Oh, we will.

David Whichard:

You'll have that.

Chris Oakley:

Yes, we'll have exact dates in many cases.

David Whichard:

Okay. You'll have some of the names?

Chris Oakley:

Yes.

David Whichard:

Okay. How many--?

Stuart Savage:

I've given them a lot of names.

David Whichard:

Well, yeah, I've given them a few, not many.

Dale Sauter:

Pre-'49 stuff, like you said, is probably gone--right?--unfortunately, but this is--.

David Whichard:

Well we didn't have any pictures before '49.

Dale Sauter:

Oh, okay. So there weren't--. Okay. I see what you're saying. So it was just a text newspaper.

David Whichard:

Because we didn't even have an engraving process back then.

Dale Sauter:

Okay. That's explains that. Huh. That's interesting.

Stuart Savage:

That Fairchild engraver.



David Whichard:

That was probably '49 or '50. See we weren't doing a lot of photography before then.

Dale Sauter:

Okay. Yeah, we didn't [inaudible].

David Whichard:

I'm sure we weren't.

Dale Sauter:

Okay. I wondered about that. But yeah, I'm definitely interested in the [inaudible].

David Mayo:

Did you also do the developing of the film?

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

Yes.

Stuart Savage:

Did everything.

David Mayo:

It must have been pretty tough to get them all pretty consistent.

David Whichard:

It was hot in a non-air conditioned building in the summertime.

David Mayo:

Did that technology change at all, as you--?

Stuart Savage:

Oh, yeah. Big time.

David Mayo:

I noticed that it started out with mainly four by fives and then went to sixteen millimeter, I guess.

David Whichard:

We did those all in a pan.

Stuart Savage:

[Nodding]Mm.

David Whichard:

And we used to do rolls in a pan.

Stuart Savage:

Yeah.

David Whichard:

Before we put them in cylinders.

Chris Oakley:

Thank you very much for agreeing to do this for us. It's been a great help and we appreciate everything you've done for us and for this project.



Dale Sauter:

Thank you.

Stuart Savage:

You're welcome.

David Whichard:

Well thank you. Thank you for having us.

Chris Oakley:

Thank you so much.

Dale Sauter:

It's been a pleasure.

[END OF INTERVIEW]

Un-cataloged item icon

The details for this item have not yet been reviewed by cataloging.

To request review of this item, click here.

×