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This interview is one of series conducted concerning Oral Histories of African-American women who taught in West Virginia public schools. Thelma White McDaniel began teaching in Chesapeake (Ohio) at a one-room school. She gives us detailed information about her family throughout the interview, including family members who were slaves, her family's employment history, her family's view on the importance of education, Christmas during her childhood, her husband and her marriage, the house she grew up in, her daughter, her relationships with family members, as well as information about her mother and siblings. There is also a section on tobacco farming. She attended a one room school and West Virginia State College, and discusses her education--she also tells us about her sorority (Alpha Kappa Alpha). Her employment history is also discussed in detail, and she tells us about coming to work in Boyd (Kentucky). Race relations is a very important topic, and this includes race relations during her childhood, discrimination at schools, segregation and discrimination in other places, the desegregation of schools and her thoughts on it, her thoughts on interracial marriages, as well as black women facing a double burden from racism and sexism. There is also an anecdote about traveling on a train. Women's rights and the Women's Improvement League are also discussed. There are numerous other discussion points as well, such as: church and religion; her church; child discipline; organizations she joined; other people she knew; youth organizations such as the League Teens; information about Charleston, WV; role models she had; her self-perceptions and her thoughts on her life; her current activities; her thoughts on modern youth; a few thoughts on her graduate degree (from Marshall University); and many other subjects.

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Library of Congress Subjects

McDaniel, Thelma White, 1912- -- Autobiography.
West Virginia State College (Institute, W. Va.) -- Oral histories.
Marshall University -- Oral histories.
Women's Improvement League -- Oral histories.
Fairmont State University -- Oral histories.


Interview is included in the Marshall University Oral History Collection. The index number is OH64-802.


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Oral History Interview: Thelma White McDaniel