Loading the player...


Otis Jackson, a Black man born 4/10/1917, speaks about growing up in rural Nash County, serving in an all-Black Army unit during WWII, and working in school administration during integration. He mentions that his family were sharecroppers who grew tobacco, corn, and cotton. He remembers going to Sunday School, playing in the woods, using homemade toys, and Christmas celebrations. He attended Nash County Training School; later went to Fayetteville State University. He was called up to serve in the Army just days before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor. Jackson was sent to the South Pacific and assigned to the 77th Coast Artillery Regiment, an all-Black unit. His role was range setter for the anti-aircraft guns. He served until Dec. 27, 1945. After the war, he worked as a porter on the Atlantic Coast train line before going back to college and getting a degree in elementary education. He spent 2 years working with the Farm Veterans Program in Rocky Mount, NC before working in the Nash County school system. He also spent 9 years working in Wayne County schools, and then spent over 30 years in the Nash County school system. He was a principal at Maude Hubbard Elementary and in administration at Cedar Grove Elementary. Jackson discusses consolidation of rural schools; speaks on importance of after-school activities, clubs, programs; opines on the result of not having productive outlets for children to occupy their time and minds, and on importance of establishing discipline at home and at school. He talks about the manner in which schools have changed over the years; mentions the increasing presence of law enforcement officers at schools. Jackson discusses integration, pointing out ways he feels it fell short of its intended purpose; mentions freedom of choice in the school selection process. He describes the effects of redistricting; speaks about voting, the creation of the 7th Commissioners District, and the goal of having Black representation within the Board of Education and amongst the County Commissioners. Jackson talks about his children, discussing where they went to college and their occupations afterward. The interview ends abruptly at 1:02:42.





Downloads Statistics

Download Full History