Interview with Evelyn Livisay, June 19, 1978

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
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00:00:01 - Education and career overview

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Partial Transcript: My name is Edward Owens. I'm working with the Urban League on their Oral Black History Project.

Segment Synopsis: Livisay talks about attending high school at Kentucky State University before becoming a teacher in Lexington in 1938.

Keywords: Bardstown (Ky.); Douglass School (Lexington, Ky.); High school; Physical education; Rural areas; Spencer County (Ky.)

Subjects: African Americans--Education.; African Americans--Employment.; Teachers--Kentucky; Teaching

GPS: Kentucky State University
Map Coordinates: 38.2, -84.858333
00:02:16 - Teaching conditions in all-Black schools

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Partial Transcript: In your opinion were the schools separate but equal?

Segment Synopsis: Livisay talks about the lack of resources and supplies in all-Black schools, as well as the salary discrepancies between white and Black teachers. She talks about the large class sizes which caused problems for the teachers.

Keywords: "Separate but equal"; All-Black schools; Busing; Buying; City schools; Class size; Discrepancies in salary; Douglass School (Lexington, Ky.); Mr. Dunn; Mrs. Vanlow; Problems; Raises; Resources; Student-teacher ratios; Superintendents; Supplies

Subjects: African Americans--Education.; African Americans--Segregation; African Americans--Social conditions.; Discrimination in education.; Discrimination in employment.; Lexington (Ky.)--Race relations.; Race discrimination.; Segregation in education--Kentucky; Teachers--Kentucky; Teaching

GPS: Former location of Douglass School
Map Coordinates: 38.069902, -84.507021
00:07:21 - Activities in the all-Black schools

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Partial Transcript: What were some of the main activities in the Black schools at this time?

Segment Synopsis: Livisay talks about the plays, music classes, and special projects within the all-Black schools during her time as a teacher. She talks about how teachers were viewed within the Black community.

Keywords: Activities; All-Black Schools; Black community; Eggs; Elite; Music classes; Participation; Plays; Supplies; Woodland Auditorium

Subjects: African Americans--Education.; African Americans--Recreation; African Americans--Social conditions.; Teachers--Kentucky; Teaching

00:10:34 - Integration of public schools in Lexington

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Partial Transcript: What did integration do to your position as a school teacher?

Segment Synopsis: Livisay talks about being chosen as one of the few Black teachers sent to integrate white schools. She says she was first given a position as the school librarian at Linlee Elementary School in order to acclimate the children and faculty to the changes, and talks about how she was received by the students, teachers, and parents. She talks about reactions to teachers' participation in the civil rights movement.

Keywords: Attitudes; Board of education; Children; Douglass School (Lexington, Ky.); Dr. Turpin; Librarians; Linlee Elementary School; Marches; Orientation; Parents; Participation; Protests; Quality of teachers; Reactions; Reading programs; Reception; Superintendents; Transfers

Subjects: African Americans--Education.; African Americans--Employment.; African Americans--Social conditions.; Lexington (Ky.)--Race relations.; Race discrimination.; Racism--Kentucky--Lexington; School integration--Kentucky--Fayette County; Teachers--Kentucky; Teaching

GPS: Linlee Elementary School
Map Coordinates: 38.103026, -84.514699
00:19:24 - Outstanding teachers

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Partial Transcript: Who were some of the outstanding teachers?

Segment Synopsis: Livisay names some of the teachers she considers to be outstanding. She talks about teachers' reluctance to participate in the integration of schools. The interview is concluded.

Keywords: Careers; Former students; Reluctance; Transfers

Subjects: African Americans--Conduct of life.; African Americans--Employment.; African Americans--Social conditions.; Civil rights demonstrations; Civil rights movements--United States; School integration--Kentucky--Fayette County; Teachers--Kentucky; Teaching