Collection American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1940

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  • Page 1 of [Janie Solomon]

    Gibson Mill Concord, N.C. September 7, 1938 M. L. W. JANIE SOLOMON She sat on the edge of the bare front porch and nursed her baby son, a frail, dark-haired women with a pale face and sad black eyes. Beside her was a crutch, padded at the top with worn blue corduroy. Two little girls sprawled near her on the porch floor; an older ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07
  • Page 2 of [Janie Solomon]

    2 know what it was, but a neighbor suggested it might be poison oak. The two little girls giggled because the baby still had sweet potato smeared on his face from dinner. Janie Armstrong Solomon, the mother of the household, was born thirty-five years ago in Rock Hill, South Carolina. She was one of the eight children of a preacher "who moved about from ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07
  • Page 3 of [Janie Solomon]

    3 From the first things didn't go so well with the Solomon family. They moved about in South Carolina, then to Gastonia where most of Janie's family lived, and on to ConCord where they stayed. Life has become harder in recent years. Janie talks about it in the weary voice of resignation: "It looks like I've had more sickness and trouble than any one ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07
  • Page 4 of [Janie Solomon]

    4 said it come from his teeth, and Mr. White over at the WPA paid to have them every one took out. After they was pulled, he could see again, but hit didn't help his artheritis nary bit. "Then last summer he took awful sick with the malarial and we had to get Dr. Burns in to cure him. I don't reckon I'll ever ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07
  • Page 5 of [Janie Solomon]

    5 Janie supports the family. She works at the WPA sewing room for $14.72 every two weeks. The little girls will tell you proudly their mother is an "inspector." She began in the sewing room as a regular worker about six mouths ago, but then was promoted to the position of inspector and overseer. The hours are the same as they would be in ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07
  • Page 6 of [Janie Solomon]

    6 a yard, she bought enough for two dresses each. "I thank the Lord I can sew," she added fervently. "When I was a young'un I couldn't run and play and cut up like the others, so I set in the house and learned to make things. I wouldn't have the job I've got now if I hadn't." Some help has come recently in ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07
  • Page 7 of [Janie Solomon]

    7 account of the no-count man her step-sister married; she told why she left school at the end of the sixth grade (her mother said it was because she had marrying in her head); she explained that she was "feeling puny," meaning that she was pregnant. Then she ordered one of the younger girls to get a broom and sweep the yard which she ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07
  • Page 8 of [Janie Solomon]

    8 neighbors to hear him. "But I don't get to hear him much no more," she remarked wistfully. As she stroked the baby's head, I noticed Janie's hands had pink polished nails. I left the house as Mr. Solomon came in from a neighbor's turnip patch with his horse and plow. The little group on the porch watched at go. Then they followed Janie ...

    • Contributor: Wolf, Muriel L. - Solomon, Janie
    • Original Format: Manuscripts/Mixed Material
    • Date: 1938-09-07