- Goldmine: Root
- Oral History Collections
- The Era Before Brown v. Board of Education
- Walter Dial oral history interview, 2004 May 12
Walter Dial oral history interview, 2004 May 12
Walter Dial reminisces about his childhood and youth growing up in Charlotte's Third Ward and attending local segregated schools in the 1930s and 1940s, including Isabella Wyche Elementary and Second Ward High School. Mr. Dial describes the white and black residents of Third Ward, and discusses other nearby communities, including Dilworth, Brooklyn, Blue Heaven, Greenville, Cherry, Second Ward, and Biddleville. He describes extracurricular activities he participated in during high school, including baseball, football, and working in the cafeteria; as well as recreation outside of school, including rollerskating and visiting young women in different neighborhoods. Mr. Dial also talks about racial tensions in Charlotte, including his experiences working as a teenager during the summer delivering telegrams and encountering hostile white youth and adults in North Charlotte (now this area is called NoDa). He describes the businesses in Charlotte's neighborhoods during the 1930s-1950s, and notes that many of the grocery store and other business owners in the black communities were white.