Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Herbert Colwell, December 2, 1979

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
Toggle Index/Transcript View Switch.
Search this Index
00:00:03 - Early life

Play segment

Partial Transcript: This is an interview with Herbert Colwell for the Frontier Nursing Service Oral History Project by Sadie W. Stidham at 2:45 on December the 2nd, 1979 at Route 1, London, Kentucky.

Segment Synopsis: Herbert Colwell is introduced. He talks about his family history. He discusses going to school as a child, including talk about games, books, and the chores he did when he was not in school.

Keywords: Ancestors; Baseball; Books; Children; Chores; Communities; Corn; Cows; Duties; Family histories; Games; Genealogy; Heat; Heating stoves; Picadome School; Playing; Responsibilities; Schoolhouses; Schools; Spelling bees; Students; Water; Wood; Work

Subjects: Education; Families.; Leslie County (Ky.); Rural schools--Kentucky

00:05:46 - Work / Transporting goods by boat

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Then, then after you, uh, uh, uh, quit school, what did you do then?

Segment Synopsis: Colwell talks about working in the mines after he left school. He talks about the local community and town. He discusses how stores transported their goods by boat. He tells a story a friend told him about being kept awake all night by hogs when on a boat trip.

Keywords: "Chalk eye"; Boats; Communities; Confluence (Ky.); Country stores; Goods; Hogs; Jobs; Loading; Macintosh Coal Company; Merchandise; Mules; Post offices; Rivers; Stores; Transportation; Work; Working

Subjects: Coal miners--Kentucky--Leslie County; Coal mines and mining--Kentucky; Families.

00:12:10 - Mill / Blacksmithing / Logging

Play segment

Partial Transcript: What about the mill? Who had the mill down there?

Segment Synopsis: Colwell talks about the local mill used to grind corn. He talks about blacksmithing and shoeing horses and oxen. He talks about women knitting and sewing. He discusses men logging during the winter months and transporting the logs down the river on rafts. He discusses other ways people made money.

Keywords: Beeswax; Blacksmiths; Cattle; Corn; Eggs; Food; Horseshoes; Knitting; Logs; Milling; Money; Oxen; Rafts; Rain; Selling; Shearing; Sheep; Stock; Timber; Tolls; Trains; Water mills; Woods; Work

Subjects: Corn--Milling; Employment--Kentucky; Logging; Lumber trade; Occupations.; Timber--Rafting

00:21:38 - Fun / Medical care

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Well, what did they do, what did they do back in those days, uh, when you was growing up, when you was young, what did they do to have a good time?

Segment Synopsis: Colwell talks about what he did for fun when he was young. He talks about the medical care available in the area including discussion on the Frontier Nursing Service as well as a local man who trained himself and would make home visits.

Keywords: Ailments; Baseball; Bills; Changes; Churches; Clinics; Dances; Diseases; Doctors; F.N.S.; FNS; Fevers; Fun; Helping; Home visits; Illnesses; Pastimes; Pay; Sickness; Skills; Social activities; Socializing; Stir-offs; Training; Treatment; Trust

Subjects: Appalachian Region--Social conditions; Appalachian Region--Social life and customs; Frontier Nursing Service, Inc.; Medical care, Cost of; Medical care--Kentucky; Medicine, Rural; Nurses; Recreation

00:28:01 - Churches / Elections

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Uh, how about the churches in the, in the, in the community there? How many churches--different denominations were they?

Segment Synopsis: Colwell talks about the local churches including preachers that have worked there over the years. He discusses the building of the local road. He talks about local elections and serving on a jury.

Keywords: Automobiles; Ballots; Baptists; Cars; Church of Christ; Denominations; Election Day; Electricity; Foot washing; Graveyard meetings; Holiness churches; Judges; Juries; Murder trials; Political candidates; Politics; Preachers; Religion; Roads; Voting; W.P.A.; WPA; Women

Subjects: Appalachian Region--Religion; Appalachian Region--Social conditions; Appalachian Region--Social life and customs; Churches--Kentucky; Elections; Kentucky--Politics and government; Rural churches; United States. Works Progress Administration.

00:35:42 - World War I / World War II / Great Depression

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Okay, what about, uh, uh--tell me about what you remember about World War I.

Segment Synopsis: Colwell talks about the effects of World War I and II on the local area. He discusses the Great Depression and what type of work he did for the WPA.

Keywords: Aid; Farms; Government jobs; Government relief programs; Great Depression; Helping; Jail; Jobs; Labor; Pride; Rationing; Rations; Relief food; Scarcity; Skilled labor; Stone masons; W.P.A.; WPA; Wars; Work; Working

Subjects: Appalachian Region--Economic conditions; Appalachian Region--Social conditions; Coal mines and mining; Depressions--1929--Kentucky; Employment--Kentucky; Occupations.; United States. Works Progress Administration.; World War, 1914-1918; World War, 1939-1945

00:40:50 - Differences between generations

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Well now, in, in, in this generation's growing up now, and, and when you, when you, uh, was young and--or when you was raising your family, uh, how would you compare these two generations?

Segment Synopsis: Colwell discusses the differences between his generation and the current generation. He speculates on what would happen if a Depression occurred now. He describes Hyden and Hazard when he was younger.

Keywords: Advantages; Comparisons; Differences; Disadvantages; Generation gaps; Generations; Jobs; Knowledge; Main streets; Responsibility; Stores; Vaccinations; Work; Working

Subjects: Appalachian Region--Economic conditions; Appalachian Region--Social conditions; Employment--Kentucky; Families.; Hazard (Ky.); Hyden (Ky.); Occupations.

00:45:03 - More about work / Hobbies

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Why did you all leave Leslie County?

Segment Synopsis: Colwell talks more about the jobs he has held over the years including mining and working for Pikeville College. He talks about the things he does to keep busy now that he is retired. He talks more about the differences between now and when he was growing up.

Keywords: Beds; Churning; County courthouses; Differences; Fixing; Food; Great Depression; Healthy; Hobbies; Hogs; Jobs; Leaving; Machinery; Mechanics; Money; Moving; Pay; Pikeville College; Problems; Repairing; Retirement; Technology; Training; Work; Working

Subjects: Appalachian Region--Economic conditions; Appalachian Region--Social conditions; Coal miners; Coal mines and mining--Kentucky; Depressions--1929--Kentucky; Employment--Kentucky; Leslie County (Ky.); Occupations.; Wages--Coal miners

00:54:03 - More about the Great Depression

Play segment

Partial Transcript: Do you know any more Depression tales?

Segment Synopsis: Colwell talks more about the Great Depression and how people survived. He speculates more about what would happen if another depression occurred. He briefly talks about crafts other local people make. The interview is concluded.

Keywords: Baskets; Chairs; Children; Cooking; Coping; Crafts; Differences; Food; Generation gaps; Generations; Great Depression; Greens; Handmade; Homemade; Money; Pay; Recessions; Respect; Suffering; Time

Subjects: Appalachian Region--Economic conditions; Appalachian Region--Social conditions; Depressions--1929--Kentucky; Families.; Wages--Coal miners