Papers (1925-1951) consisting of correspondence, legal document, opinions, publications, financial records, tabulation form, speeches, advertising, property listing forms, etc.
This collection consists of records from the files of Greenville, N.C., attorney, Samuel Bobbitt Underwood, Jr. (b. Feb. 2, 1911). Underwood graduated from Duke University in 1931 and was admitted to the Pitt County Bar in 1937. He served as Pitt County Attorney during the period (1947-1951) in which Pitt County Memorial Hospital (1951-1977) was founded and built, and was chairman of the United War Fund of Pitt County (1944-1945). The collection contains correspondence, legal papers, and financial records concerning Pitt County Memorial Hospital, the United War Fund for Pitt County, N.C., and Pitt County Drainage District No. 2.
The first part of the collection consists of correspondence, legal documents and opinions, and miscellaneous items relating to the founding, funding, and construction of Pitt County Memorial Hospital (1947-1951). Correspondence and legal records (1947-1950) concern the donation of land by the heirs of Jesse Rountree Moye and the financing of the hospital construction through a county bond issue and aid administered by the North Carolina Medical Care Commission. Included are documents (1948-1951) appointing the Board of Trustees for the hospital, proposing the development of a nursing school, planning a home for nurses, and establishing insurance and bonding requirements. Correspondence chronicles the construction process, including problems on-site and with the contracts, and one letter (Dec. 12, 1948) mentions the hourly wage for unskilled workers.
After completion of the actual construction (Oct. 1950), the focus changes to the formulation of by-laws and purchases of equipment. Copies of proposed by-laws for the hospital, its medical staff, and trustees are included, as are articles discussing guidelines for determining qualifications for staff physicians, and guidelines for avoiding the performance of unnecessary surgery. Bids for construction, equipment, and coal and correspondence (1950) with various contractors give insight into the variety and cost of equipment to furnish the hospital.
Other topics concern the opposition (Mar. 7, 1949) of the Pitt County Board of Commissioners to a proposed change in the method of and increase in the amount of taxation of liquor sales at A.B.C. stores; the hospital's water purifying still (May 27, 1949); a comparison of the quality of tobacco crops in Georgia in 1949 with that of 1948 (Aug. 5, 1949); Pitt County Negro Democratic Club interest in the new hospital (May 6, 1949); the deplorable accommodations for blacks in the present hospital (May 24, 1949); and the operation of the Pitt County Negro Clinic (May 24, 1949).
The second part of this collection concerns the activities of the United War Fund of Pitt Co., the county level of the United War Fund. The United War Fund, established in 1943, at the direction of the President of the United States, combined the fund-raising efforts of all war relief and community service organizations, except the Red Cross. Correspondence, publicity literature, and financial records reflect fund raising campaigns in 1943, 1944, and 1945, and provide insight into the United War Fund from the national, state, county, and township levels.
Descriptions of the activities of the USO, the United Seamen's Service (an organization similar to the USO, serving the Merchant Marine), and War Prisoner's Aid (of the Y.M.C.A.), the major recipients of United War Fund monies, appear in the records of all levels of the United War Fund effort except the township level. Also included are numerous vignettes of the United War Fund's assistance to European and Asian countries, in the aftermath of liberation, through various foreign relief agencies. These agencies are listed on a number of different documents and some of their work is described. A letter from President Harry Truman (1945) stresses the continued need for United War Fund contributions even though the war is over.
At the local level, population and assessed valuation statistics on Pitt County (1942) are included. Donor lists identify special gifts and regular contributors by name and dollar amount given and by township. The use of radio and newspaper publicity is represented by a 1944 listing of WGTC Programming Spots, including one script; 1944 news releases; an advertising brochure for radio station WRRF in Washington, N.C. (1944), listing numbers of families, homes with radios, and different types of stores in its listening area; and notes on Daily Reflector advertising costs (1944). Also included is literature (1945) reflecting tax advantages for contributions.
Of particular interest is the manner in which segregation affects such a fund drive. Since much emphasis was placed on solicitation through the schools, lists (1944-1946) of both Greenville and Pitt County school teachers, segregated by race, are included. Each township had both a white and a black chairman (1943) and special arrangements were suggested for the handling of Negro tobacco workers' solicitation (1944). The Chicod (School) Township records include separate lists of white and black workers (1943).
The final portion of the collection consists of the assessment rolls for Pitt County Drainage District No. 2, listing property owners by name, the number of acres each owned, and their total tax for the years 1925-1937. A decline in tax value is documented as the depression deepens.
The oversize folder contains a 1949 bid tabulation form (no figures given), a listing of outstanding bonds (1949), a notice for bond sales (1950), and a sketch (1950) of a bronze tablet for Pitt County Memorial Hospital. Other items include worksheets, spreadsheets, and advertising information concerning the United War Fund, and 1931 property listing forms.
Gift of Mr. Sam B. Underwood, Jr.
Gift of Ms. Ginger Bass
Processed by C. Crews, June 1991
Encoded by Apex Data Services
Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.