- Goldmine: Root
- Oral History Collections
- Charlotte LGBTQ+ oral histories
- Robert Hampton Williams oral history interview 1, 2017 January 24
Robert Hampton Williams oral history interview 1, 2017 January 24
WARNING: This interview contains discussion of suicide, domestic violence, and rape beginning at 42:00 and ending at 47:00. In this first of two interviews, Rob Williams discusses his early life as a young gay man living in Chapel Hill and Charlotte, North Carolina. Mr. Williams discusses the affect his father's alcoholism had on his childhood, prompting him to turn to books and music for refuge. Mr. Williams' appreciation of the arts continued through his higher education as he pursued his Master's degree in Art History from Chapel Hill University. In 1957, Mr. Williams came out of the closet and soon met his lifelong partner, Warren Womble. Beginning in the late 1960s, Mr. Williams spent a great deal of time visiting Gingercake Mountain located in Burke County, North Carolina, surrounded by a stimulating array of gay and heterosexual intellectuals--most noteworthy of them being a female librarian named Stroupie. After retiring from his twenty-year teaching career with Charlotte Country Day School, Mr. Williams talks about his explorations of Africa and Japan--highlighting his interest in Japanese ceramics and woodblock prints.