Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History

Interview with Nancy Lee Fields, June 10, 1987

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries
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00:00:06 - Life before the strike

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Partial Transcript: So, why don't we start your interview by you telling me the time before the strike, what your job was at the hospital?

Segment Synopsis: Fields discusses her life before the strike, focusing upon her job in the cafeteria of the Pikeville Methodist Hospital.

Keywords: Daughter-in-law; Husbands; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Restaurants; Schedules; Sisters; Strikes

Subjects: Death; Dietitians; Kitchen; Pike County (Ky.); Training

00:05:21 - Work before the strike

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Partial Transcript: Well, what do you remember about what it was like to go to work?

Segment Synopsis: Fields details her work before the strike. Fields also describes a workplace injury in which she suffered severe burns to her hands. The interviewee also explains what prompted her to work at the hospital.

Keywords: Accidents; Bills; Burns; Difficult; Food carts; Hands; Holiday Inn; Houses; Husbands; Nervous; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Restaurants; Schools; Shifts; Strikes

Subjects: Children; Death; Employment--Kentucky; Health; Kitchen; Pike County (Ky.); Retirement; Social security; Work

00:09:30 - Work after the strike

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Partial Transcript: What was--what was it like when you went back?

Segment Synopsis: Fields briefly talks of the changes she experienced at Pikeville Methodist following the strike.

Keywords: Cafeterias; Dining rooms; Pikeville Medical Hospital; Schedules; Strikes

Subjects: Cleaning; Employment--Kentucky; Food; Pike County (Ky.)

00:11:25 - New hospital / More on her accident

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Partial Transcript: Well, tell me what it was like.

Segment Synopsis: Fields compares her experience working in the old hospital to her new workplace at the Pikeville Medical Hospital. Additionally, Fields details her work accident, including the recovery process.

Keywords: Accidents; Cafeterias; Food carts; Healthcare; Pikeville Medical Hospital

Subjects: Electricity; Employment--Kentucky; Food; Kitchen; Patients; Pike County (Ky.); Trays

00:14:54 - Lead-up to the strike and beginning of the strike

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Partial Transcript: Well, do you remember what it was like before you actually came out on strike, like the weeks leading into it? Were you thinking there was gonna be a strike?

Segment Synopsis: Fields chronicles the events leading up to the hospital strike, as well as her participation in the picket line. Fields also recalls the one and only time she broke through the picket line to take her ill son to the hospital.

Keywords: Hospitals; Picket lines; Pikeville Medical Hospital; Restaurants; Signatures; Strikes; Supervisors; Unions; Working conditions

Subjects: Criticism; Employment--Kentucky; Food; Friend; Picketing; Son; Work

00:19:52 - Family

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Partial Transcript: How many grandkids do you have?

Segment Synopsis: Fields discusses her family, including her marriage and children.

Keywords: Ferguson Creek (Ky.); Great-grandchildren; Hauling; Island Creek (Ky.); Schools; Sister-in-law; Sisters; Trucks

Subjects: Animals; Families.; Gardening; Grandchildren; Life; Marriage; Molasses; Pikeville (Ky.); Potatoes; Tomatoes; Wedding

00:26:50 - Children

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Partial Transcript: Tell me your kids. How many kids have you had?

Segment Synopsis: Fields explores her children and their respective lives. Fields then briefly talks of her husband and his death.

Keywords: Granddaughters; Heart attacks; Husbands; Siblings

Subjects: Children; Coal miners; Death; Families.; House; Kentucky; Mother; Ohio; Sons; Teacher

00:31:37 - Strike

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Partial Transcript: Well, all the--all these folks, how did everybody feel about you and Mentie being on strike?

Segment Synopsis: Fields articulates her memories of the strike and her opinions of the strike itself.

Keywords: Black lung pension; Complaints; Jobs; Pay; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Restaurants; Strikes; Support

Subjects: Brother; Coal miners; Mother; Pike County (Ky.); Pikeville (Ky.); Sister; Work

00:35:56 - Memories of the picket line

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Partial Transcript: When you think back about those times on the picket line, what kinds of things do you remember the most?

Segment Synopsis: Fields shares her memories of the picket line.

Keywords: Enjoyment; Expectations; Non-strikers; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Strikes; Unions; Unusual

Subjects: Nieces; People; Pike County (Ky.); Volunteers

00:38:57 - Strike efforts

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Partial Transcript: So, one of the things I'm asking people, Nancy Lee, is to think back over that period of time, and even afterwards, and think of--try to list out everything you did to try to win the strike.

Segment Synopsis: Fields outlines her efforts in the strike, including the jobs she worked during this time to support herself.

Keywords: Demands; Duties; Gains; Holiday Inn; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Restaurants; Schools; Sisters; Standards; Strikes; Union meetings; Unions

Subjects: Cooking; Employment--Kentucky; Mother; Pike County (Ky.); Social security

00:46:34 - Family during the strike / Church efforts in the strike

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Partial Transcript: Um, how did you manage to get along during the strike?

Segment Synopsis: Fields explains how she survived financially during the strike. Fields then gives her opinion on the role of church leaders in the strike.

Keywords: Bills; Brookside Strike; Help; Houses; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Restaurants; Roadblocks; Strikes; Unions

Subjects: Boycotts; Brother; Employment--Kentucky; Methodist Church; Picketing; Pike County (Ky.); Wages

00:51:29 - Other strike strategies

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Partial Transcript: Well, when you look at it now, you think there's other things that you all could have done that would have gotten you a contract?

Segment Synopsis: Fields talks of other tactics used by strikers to achieve their demands. Fields then describes the conditions she experienced while participating in the picket line.

Keywords: Board members; Conversations; Daughter-in-law; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Sisters; Strategies; Strikes; Trash

Subjects: Cold; People; Picketing; Pike County (Ky.); Work

00:57:15 - Regrets about the strike / Hospital communication

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Partial Transcript: If you had it to do over, would you change anything that you did?

Segment Synopsis: Fields considers what she would have done differently during the strike. Additionally, Fields explains how the workers on the picket line communicated with the workers who remained in the hospital.

Keywords: Hospitals; Picket lines; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Regrets; Strikes; Talking; Upset

Subjects: Gossip; Kitchen; Picketing; Pike County (Ky.)

01:00:13 - Advice for strikers / Favorite part of strike

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Partial Transcript: Let's say your granddaughter, the one that's twenty-five, was facing a situation like that strike. What kind of advice would you give her?

Segment Synopsis: Fields shares her advice to those interested in striking. Fields also details her favorite aspect of the strike.

Keywords: Advice; Difficult; Granddaughters; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Siblings; Strikes; Unions

Subjects: Brother; Children; Heat; Pike County (Ky.); Snow; Weather

01:02:31 - Housework during the strike / Final thoughts

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Partial Transcript: You were--been living alone. How'd you get all your work done?

Segment Synopsis: Fields illustrates how she did the housework and maintenance as a widow. Fields then shares her final thoughts on the hospital strike.

Keywords: Family; Future; Houses; Husbands; Jobs; Pay; Pikeville Methodist Hospital; Strikes; Widows

Subjects: Children; Chores; Death; Father; Painting; Pike County (Ky.); Sons; Work