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Frontier Nursing Service Oral History Project: Frontier Nursing Service Project: FNS 51 - FNS 100

This guide will help you locate primary source oral history interviews on the Frontier Nursing Service.

Annotated Guide to the Frontier Nursing Service Oral History Project: FNS 51 - FNS 75

If not available online, audio copies and/or transcripts of the interviews in this project are available in the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History.

 

79OH144FNS 51

GRACE REEDER

 Date:          January 25, 1979

 Location:      Wendover, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:          1 hr. 45 min.

Grace Reeder, a nurse, first learned of the FNS when Mary Breckinridge spoke at a meeting in Cincinnati.  After volunteering for a month as a staff nurse at the hospital in Hyden, Reeder came back in 1941 as a member of the regular staff and became chief nurse in the outpatient department.  She later graduated from the FNS Graduate School of Midwifery and remained for three years as a district nurse.  Reeder tells of her work with the local people, of avoiding moonshine stills on her rounds, and of helping children to go to Berea [College's Foundation School].  She discusses local ideas of propriety and attitudes toward the FNS nurses over the duration of her experience. 

 

79OH145 FNS 52

HANNA HIGGINS

 Date:          January 25, 1979

 Location:      Dedham, Massachusetts

 Interviewer:   Anne Campbell

 P.T.:          30 min.

Hannah Higgins first became acquainted with the FNS through a committee meeting in Boston and has helped to raise money for the FNS through various projects.  She eventually was appointed to the FNS Board of Governors. Higgins explains that it is now more difficult to obtain contributions for the FNS because people are already involved in projects in their own communities.  The activities of the Boston Committee are also discussed.

 

 79OH146 FNS 53

 MARDI B. PERRY AND SUSAN M. PUTNAM

 Date:          January 25, 1979

 Location:      Concord, Massachusetts

 Interviewer:   Anne Campbell

 P.T.:          1 hr.

Susan Putnam heard Mary Breckinridge lecture in Boston and went to the FNS in 1931 as a courier.  She describes the duties of couriers at that time and also some particular outings she recalls from her experience in Leslie County.  Perry talks about New England committee work and the Christmas Preview fund raiser.  She eventually became a member of the FNS Board of Trustees and also donated the funds for a cottage named for her at Wendover [Mardi Cottage].

 

79OH147 FNS 54 

SUE GRANDIN AND PATSY P. LAWRENCE

 Date:          January 26, 1979

 Location:      Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts

 Interviewer:   Anne Campbell

 P.T.:          1 hr. 20 min.

Patsy Lawrence was a courier with the FNS in the 1950s, and her daughter became a courier and a nurse. Lawrence has been courier chairman in the Boston area and chairman of the Boston Committee.  She talks about changes in the life of a courier in recent times and also discusses the modern FNS as a learning laboratory for persons from all over the world.  Sue Grandin's mother and Mary Breckinridge were first cousins.  She recalls "Cousin Mary" coming to visit and also her mother's eighty-mile ride on horseback with Breckinridge to see the FNS area.  Grandin comments at length upon Breckinridge's motivation, methods, and experiences in establishing the FNS.  Lawrence talks about changes in the concept of FNS services since the advent of government programs such as Medicare and Medicaid.  Grandin also discusses the Boston Preview fund raiser.

 

79OH148 FNS 55

BEATRICE WILLIAMS

 Date:          January 26, 1979

 Location:      Boston, Massachusetts

 Interviewer:   Anne Campbell

 P.T.:          30 min.

Beatrice Williams was a member of the American Committee for Devastated France (CARD), established in 1917, and she comments upon the center run by Mary Breckinridge at Vic-sur-Aisne.  Williams was a driver for Breckinridge in the local area while waiting for her agricultural assignment to come through.  As a specialist in poultry, she had been sent to help re-establish farming enterprises in the area.  Williams recalls Mary Breckinridge personally and indicates that Breckinridge was greatly assisted by Anne Morgan, founder of the CARD program, in establishing the FNS in eastern Kentucky.

 

79OH149 FNS 56

MOLLY LEE

 Date:          February 6, 1979

 Location:      Hyden, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:          2 hrs. 20 min.

Molly Lee came to the FNS from England as a nurse-midwife, having had experience in England, Scotland and Canada.  Part of her district nursing experience as a Queen's Nurse had been learning to do without the usual supplies and to improvise in people's homes.  She began work with the FNS in 1955, serving at Beech Fork and later at Confluence.  Lee discusses Mary Breckinridge, in particular as a speaker at a fund raising dinner.  Having left the FNS for a period, Lee returned in 1958 to teach at the hospital.  She also performed most of the home deliveries in the Hyden area.  Lee explains that the amended Kentucky law, as of the time of the interview, prevented nurse-midwives from being paid for deliveries if a doctor were not present, a circumstance that negated their purpose, and that outside Kentucky, midwives were recognized and paid.  Lee's midwifery course in England is described in detail and compared to the curriculum in the U.S., the latter being more comprehensive.  Lee discusses the birth control pill developed by Dr. John Rock and its reception in the FNS area.  She goes on to detail the current operation of the FNS and the teaching program.  Lee also specifies some innovative procedures used in delivery and comments upon midwifery examinations.

 

 79OH150 FNS 57

 MARY LEWIS BIGGERSTAFF

 Date:          February 12, 1979

 Location:      Berea, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          2 hrs.

Mary Biggerstaff was born in Hyden in 1899.  She tells of her family's pioneer background and also mentions some early residents of the area before the FNS was established. Biggerstaff was present at the first organizational meeting at the Hyden courthouse in 1925.  Her father introduced Mary Breckinridge to many people in Leslie County.  Biggerstaff also discusses black families in Hyden and a black school. She recalls the family histories of many Leslie County residents and gives the names and backgrounds of early doctors in the community, a grandmother who practiced public health, and also a number of early pharmacists.  Her recollection of buildings in Hyden is extremely specific.  Biggerstaff's personal acquaintance with Mary Breckinridge is related at length.  She also gives some details of the Deaton-Callahan feud, among other local happenings.

 

79OH153 FNS 60

CATHERINE T. ARPEE

 Date:          December 2, 1978

 Location:      Lake Forest, Illinois

 Interviewer:   Linda Green

 P.T.:          55 min.

Catherine Arpee was born in 1903 and heard Mary Breckinridge speak about the FNS in the late 1920s.  Arpee went to Wendover as a courier in 1932 and became a member of the Chicago Committee at a 1933 meeting.  She acted as Mary Breckinridge's escort from the train station when Breckinridge visited Chicago.  Arpee discusses early couriers and their duties.  She also comments upon Mary Breckinridge's views in regard to family planning.  Arpee mentions the Chicago family that donated the funds for the Brutus Center and talks about the work of the Chicago Committee.  In addition, she contributes observations about Breckinridge's personality and her remarkable memory for names and faces.

 

79OH160 FNS 61

CARLYLE CARTER

 Date:          January 20, 1979

 Location:      Evanston, Illinois

 Interviewer:   Linda Green

 P.T.:          40 min.

Carlyle Carter, whose grandmother was a first cousin of Mary Breckinridge, recalls her two-week visit to Wendover at the age of ten and also subsequent visits.  Her father, Joe Carter, had been the first FNS courier.  At the time of the interview she was secretary for the Chicago Committee.  Carter talks about Mary Breckinridge in her later years at Wendover and discusses her own experiences as a courier.

 

79OH161 FNS 62

GERALDINE BROWN

 Date:          March 4, 1979

 Location:      Chagrin Falls, Ohio

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          30 min.

Geraldine Brown's daughter was an FNS courier, and Brown contrasts the current duties of couriers with those of times past when horses were used.  She feels that the "simplicity" is gone from the experience and that the absence of horses reduces the appeal for young women.  Brown is a member of the Cleveland Committee but has had no direct association with the FNS.

 

79OH162 FNS 63

MARTHA WEBSTER

 Date:          March 4, 1979

 Location:      Chagrin Falls, Ohio

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          40 min.

Martha Webster tells of her experience as an FNS courier in 1938, recalling the courtesy of the mountaineers and the camaraderie among the nurses.  A member of the Cleveland Committee, Webster has not had recent contact with the FNS.

 

79OH163 FNS 64

EDITH VIGNOS

 Date:          March 4, 1979

 Location:      Chagrin Falls, Ohio

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          15 min.

Edith Vignos first heard about Mary Breckinridge from her grandmother, and Vignos visited Wendover in the early 1970s, when her daughter was a courier.  At the time Vignos was chairman of the Cleveland Committee during the 1970s, Kate Ireland and Helen Browne came to Cleveland to speak about the FNS and to show a film.  Since then, the Committee has not been very active, and Vignos has not had contact with the FNS.  In the course of the interview Vignos relates her impressions of the Quarterly Bulletin.

 

79OH164 FNS 65

BARBARA B. WEBSTER

 Date:          March 5, 1979

 Location:      Cleveland, Ohio

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          1 hr.

Barbara Webster recalls her experience as an FNS courier just prior to World War Two.  She details her responsibilities with the horses and also her association with Mary Breckinridge.  Webster tells of serving as a nurse's aide during an outbreak of measles and pneumonia. Additional duties included serving as an assistant hostess for visitors and helping to write appeals for funds. During the interview she refers to daily notes made at Wendover during her stay.  She comments at length upon the role of the FNS in the daily lives of the local people. 

 

79OH165 FNS 66

NANCY N. PORTER

 Date:          March 5, 1979

 Location:      Birmingham, Michigan

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          50 min.

Nancy Porter went to the FNS as a nurse in 1947.  She recalls Christmas at Wendover and the preparation of clothing to be given away.  Porter served in the hospital clinic and describes her work as well as the hospital facilities at that time.  Porter's contact with Wendover was minimal during this period since she had no midwifery training and did not go out on local visits.  She talks a bit about hospital facilities and obstetrical care in Detroit and discusses the Detroit Committee of the FNS.  Porter also comments upon the Quarterly Bulletin.

 

 79OH166 FNS 67

 EMILY E. SAUGMAN

 Date:          March 9, 1979

 Location:      Manitowoc, Wisconsin

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          1 hr. 30 min.

Emily Saugman first met Mary Breckinridge while a student at Crescent College in Eureka Springs, Arkansas; during that time Breckinridge married Richard Thompson, president of the college.  Saugman was subsequently in Breckinridge's French class and tells of Breckinridge's imaginative approach to teaching the language.  The informant comments upon Breckinridge as a public speaker and also mentions idiosyncrasies in regard to hairstyle and hats.  Some information is given concerning Richard Thompson, whom Saugman encountered in later years.  She also recalls the names of a number of FNS couriers.  Saugman indicates that she took the picture of Mary Breckinridge and her son that hangs in the lobby of Mary Breckinridge Hospital in Hyden.

 

79OH167 FNS 68

LEONARD HOOD

 Date:          February 2, 1979

 Location:      Hyden, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Effie Fugate

 P.T.:          20 min.

Rev. Leonard Hood details the history of the Presbyterian Church in Leslie County from its beginning in 1894 and discusses its philosophy.  Hood indicates that one of the first ministers used his influence to have a bridge built across Rockhouse Creek from the main street in Hyden to the section in which the Presbyterian Church is now located.  In 1896, before the advent of the public school system, the church underwrote and built the Hyden Academy.  Later it provided dormitories so that students living in more isolated areas could attend public school.  The Presbyterian philosophy of equal opportunity for women in the life of the church was uncommon among earlier churches.  Hood explains qualifications required for the Presbyterian ministry and also the activities of the present church.

 

79OH168 FNS 69

LEONARD HOOD

 Date:          March 16, 1979

 Location:      Hyden, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Elaine Begley

 P.T.:          l0 min.

Leonard Hood was born in West Virginia in 1935 and received his Master of Divinity degree at Louisville Presbyterian Seminary.  He became pastor of the church at Wooton two years before he received his degree.  The Wooton church began in an old schoolhouse just down from Cutshin in 1912.  It attempted to reach people through providing jobs and involving people in the Fireside Industries Program.  It also provided a social and recreational program in the 1920s and 1930s.

 

79OH169FNS 70

KAREN SLABAUGH

 Date:          March 23, 1979

 Location:      Wendover, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          45 min.

Karen Slabaugh learned about the FNS while a nurse in Costa Rica and subsequently went through FNS family nurse and midwifery training.  She gives details of the curriculum and explains how the two programs overlap.  The range of a midwife's skills and duties is also indicated. Slabaugh sees nursing experience with the FNS as providing an effective laboratory for the success of persons like herself who wish to serve in other isolated rural locations throughout the world.

 

79OH170 FNS 71

FANNIE LEWIS

 Date:          March 18, 1979

 Location:      Hyden, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Sadie Stidham

 P.T.:          20 min.

Fannie Lewis was born in Leslie County in 1906 and attended a one-room school through the third grade.  Her family gathered ginseng--"sang"--and other roots in order to buy coffee, salt, and sugar.  Lewis recalls that there were no cars, radios, churches, or doctors on Whiteoak Creek, where she grew up, and her child was delivered by a "granny woman." The nearest store was eight miles away, and the only transportation was mule or walking.  No social activities were held, and there was essentially nothing to do in her locality.

 

79OH171 FNS 72

CORBIN PENNINGTON

 Date:          March 18, 1979

 Location:      Causey, Leslie County, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Sadie Stidham

 P.T.:          20 min.

Corbin Pennington was born in Leslie County in 1912 and completed the eighth grade.  After he married, he worked at farming and logging and was able to support his family on a wage of thirty-five cents an hour.  In 1947 Pennington began working in the coal mines; at that time many people were killed in such work.  He indicates that electricity reached his community about 195l and that the first telephones were installed in 1960.  Pennington recalls meeting Mary Breckinridge and also refers to a series of nurses at the nearby clinic.

 

 79OH172 FNS 73

 FREDERICKA HOLDSHIP

 Date:          March 25, 1979

 Location:      Wendover, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          45 min.

Fredericka Holdship first came to the FNS as a courier in 1937 after having heard Mary Breckinridge speak at a meeting.  She recalls her first trip to Wendover by bus and horseback and also goes into detail concerning the different FNS centers and the nurses associated with them. Holdship tells of Mrs. Breckinridge's efforts to obtain horses during World War II and various ways in which problems were managed at Wendover.  She talks about the routine of the nurses and the difficulty of getting away for any time off.  At one time research was conducted in the area concerning children's aptitude or intelligence.  Holdship comments upon findings and goes on to describe the raising of children and the life of the local people.  She became chairman of the Pittsburgh Committee in 1969 and later was appointed to the FNS Board of Governors.

 

79OH173 FNS 74

HELEN E. BROWNE

 Date:          March 26, 1979

 Location:      Wendover, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:          1 hr. 20 min.

Helen Browne tells of her background in England and her nursing and midwifery training.  She also discusses her midwifery experience before she came to the FNS in July of 1938.  Her journey to Kentucky and to Wendover is recalled in detail.  Browne comments upon meeting the mountain people and later meeting Mary Breckinridge when she returned to Wendover after back surgery.  Browne remained with the FNS when World War II came and nearly all British nurses returned home.  She became hospital midwife and eventually Associate Director of the FNS.  The informant discusses Mary Breckinridge's original attitude toward black visitors at Wendover in addition to many details of her life.  According to Browne, Breckinridge attempted to change the direction of the FNS in the 1940s without success.  She explains some of the difficulties of that period and how they were handled.  [Browne succeeded Mary Breckinridge as Director of the FNS.]

 

79OH174 FNS 75

HELEN E. BROWNE

 Date:          March 27, 1979

 Location:      Wendover, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Dale Deaton

 P.T.:          3 hrs. 30 min.

Continuing from the previous interview, Helen Browne discusses Mary Breckinridge's political views and the background of some of her policy decisions.  Browne also continues her comment about Breckinridge's racial attitudes and gives Breckinridge's perspective on the Vietnam War. Some information is given in regard to Breckinridge's second husband, Richard Thompson, the father of Breckie. Browne provides details of Breckinridge's last days and goes into the personal interest of Breckinridge and some of her staff in spiritualism.  In addition to observations concerning government funding and the Appalachian Regional Commission, Browne tells of raising money for the new hospital and of obtaining $25,000 from the local community. Browne comments upon family life in the area, distribution of labor, and attitudes toward work.  She also mentions Mary Breckinridge's original opposition to family planning. Discussion of food prepared in the hospital and cultural orientation in regard to food leads to discussion of food in the home locally.  Browne contrasts academic and clinical backgrounds of nurses who came to the FNS.  Besides indicating some general mistakes made by persons who came into the area with the idea of helping the mountain people, Browne comments occasionally upon administrative difficulties.

Annotated Guide to the Frontier Nursing Service Oral History Project: FNS 76 - FNS 100

If not available online, audio copies and/or transcripts of the interviews in this project are available in the Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History.

 

79OH176 FNS 76

MARTHA PREWITT BRECKINRIDGE

Date:          March 30, 1979

 Location:      Mt. Sterling, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:          l hr. l0 min.

Martha Breckinridge came to Wendover as it was being completed and served as secretary to Mary Breckinridge in addition to doing the cooking, making slip covers and performing other tasks.  At one point she became postmaster.  She relates some of her experiences while performing courier duties and even recalls negotiating for some land for an outpost center.  One duty she performed was to take children with illnesses to the train at Krypton to go on to the hospital at Louisville or Cincinnati. Breckinridge tells of visitors arriving for the dedication of the first hospital building and enumerates the difficulties of trying to engineer the journey to Wendover from the train, with everyone on horse or muleback or in jolt wagons.  She describes Mary Breckinridge in detail and gives anecdotes of her travel with Breckinridge to raise funds for the FNS.

 

79OH177 FNS 77

SOPHIA HOWARD

 Date:          March 17, 1979

Location:      Leslie County, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Teresa Walker

 P.T.:          25 min.

Sophia Howard was born in 1895 on Muncy's Creek.  She tells of the wildness of the county at that time and how people managed to live by weaving their own wool and hauling flour from Middlesboro.  She indicates that her father, who lived to be 112, was the first person to come to the area.  Howard identifies her sister as a "granny woman" who delivered babies before the FNS was established. She describes early log houses and comments upon the development of Hyden.

      

79OH178FNS 78

ROBERT SCHAEFFER

 Date:          April 6, 1979

Location:      Thousandsticks, Kentucky

 Interviewer:   Joyce Asher

 P.T.:          l0 min.

Robert Schaeffer attended Red Bird High School, Berea College and Asbury Theological Seminary.  At the time of the interview he was pastor for both Thousandsticks United Methodist Church and Dryhill Church.  He briefly discusses his role as local minister.

 

                79OH179 FNS 79

                WILLIAM E. HEDGES

 Date:        April 18, 1979

 Location:    Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

                 P.T.:        1 hr. 50 min.

William Hedges was employed by the National Forest Service in the late 1920s and 1930s and operated out of a regional office with responsibility for eastern Kentucky.  He recalls meeting Mary Breckinridge in the late 1930s, when she was visiting Washington, D.C. to advocate the establishment of national forests as a way of stabilizing the economy and improving the overall living conditions in eastern Kentucky.  In addition to describing logging practices in the area prior to roads and railroads, Hedges offers some personal recollections of his acquaintance with Breckinridge.

 

                79OH180 FNS 80

                ANNETTE VON STARCH

 Date:        April 17, 1979

 Location:    Downingtown, Pennsylvania

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

                 P.T.:        15 min.

Annette Von Starch joined the Philadelphia Committee in the early 1950s.  She remembers Mary Breckinridge as "an extremely forceful woman" and recalls the committee's efforts to stage benefits and obtain support for the FNS.  Von Starch also discusses the FNS leadership provided by Helen Browne, W. B. Rogers, and Kate Ireland.

 

                 79OH182 FNS 81

                 JANET HEWES, CARRIE CHESTON, AND ELIZABETH GAWTHROP

 Date:        April 17, 1979

 Location:    Westchester, Pennsylvania

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

                 P.T.:        50 min.

Janet Hewes, Carrie Cheston, and Elizabeth Gawthrop are long-time members of the Philadelphia Committee.  They comment upon their early interest in the FNS and upon fund raising activities of the Philadelphia Committee.  They also give their impressions of eastern Kentucky, based upon personal visits or other involvement with the FNS.

 

                 790H183 FNS 82

                 EDYTHE BALSLEY, MARY B. HODGE, AND ELIZABETH GAWTHROP

 Date:        April 17, 1979

 Location:    Westchester, Pennsylvania

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

                 P.T.:        1 hr. 15 min.

Edythe Balsley, Mary Hodge, and Elizabeth Gawthrop are long-time members of the Philadelphia Committee.  Hodge is related to the Breckinridges and discusses the family's history.  All three informants contribute their recollections of Mary Breckinridge.  They also comment upon their attempts to interest young people in the activities of the FNS.

 

                 79OH184 FNS 83

                 ELIZABETH B. BOYD

 Date:         April 10, 1979

 Location:    Evanston, Illinois

 Interviewer: Linda Green

 P.T.:        30 min.

 Elizabeth Boyd first became acquainted with the FNS and Chicago Committee in the early 1930s.  She recalls committee meetings in the Drake Hotel and cites Mary Breckinridge's effect upon people as "electric."  Boyd visited Wendover in 1936, when her daughter served as a courier, and again years later.  She comments that contributors and personnel were attracted to the FNS by Breckinridge's description of the local people, the characteristics of the general area, and the fact that horses were used by the nurses.

 

                 79OH185 FNS 84

                 MARIANNE HARPER

 Date:        April 9, 1979

 Location:    Chicago, Illinois

 Interviewer: Linda Green

 P.T.:        35 min.

 Marianne Harper became a courier for the FNS in the summer of 1933, following her graduation from the University of Chicago.  She believes that the use of horses at the FNS held great attraction for volunteers.  She became chairman of the Chicago Committee and later served as chairman of the Courier Selection Committee.  According to Harper, Mary Breckinridge utilized personal friendships to a great extent in raising funds for the FNS.  Harper also comments upon fund raising activities of the Chicago Committee and suggests reasons for the decline of interest in the Chicago area.

 

                 79OH186 FNS 85

                 CAROLYN BOOTH GREGORY

 Date:          March 31, 1979

 Location:    Evanston, Illinois

 Interviewer: Linda Green

                 P.T.:        55 min.

 Carolyn Gregory learned about the FNS while a student at Bates College in Maine.  Following her graduation in the late 1940s, she volunteered to work as Christmas Secretary at the FNS, organizing the donation of gifts for local children.  She discusses Christmas at the FNS and the family atmosphere throughout the organization.  For the remainder of the year Gregory performed clerical tasks and served as a part-time courier.  The FNS impressed her as "a community of self-sufficient women," and she recounts a number of experiences during the transition from horses to jeeps.  Gregory also comments upon visits with local people and recalls being present at several childbirths.

 

                 79OH187 FNS 86

                 ALBERTA KELLY

 Date:         April 26, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

 P.T.:        55 min.

 Alberta Kelly's mother and father both served on the FNS Board of Governors during the 1960s.  She remembers several girlhood visits to Wendover, during which she had the opportunity to accompany the nurse-midwives and the couriers on their rounds.  Kelly gives her impressions of Mary Breckinridge and assesses her strengths and her leadership ability.  Kelly herself became a member of the Board of Governors in 1975.  She discusses changes in the FNS, including increased government involvement, higher fees, and active participation of local people in decision-making.  Kelly comments upon attempts by the FNS to adjust to changing social conditions in the local area and to changing approaches to health care funding at the national level.      

 

                 79OH188 FNS 87

                 KATHLEEN CARTER

                 Date:        April 26, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

 P.T.:        15 min.

 Kathleen Carter is a member of the Washington Committee of the FNS and the wife of former Congressman Tim Lee Carter.  She discusses her husband's interest in rural health care from the standpoint of his own background as a physician.  Carter also recalls the events surrounding Richard Nixon's visit to Hyden in 1979 and comments upon the Carters' relationship with the Nixons.

 

                 79OH189 FNS 88

                 FRANCES M. CARTER

 Date:         April 26, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

 P.T.:        55 min.

 Frances Carter was born in Louisville and in 1917 moved to Boston, where she later became involved in the Boston Committee.  She discusses her recollections of Mary Breckinridge and Helen Browne, her impressions of eastern Kentucky, and her experiences in fund raising for the FNS. Carter moved to Washington, D.C. in the early 1970s and became affiliated with the Washington Committee.

 

                79OH190 FNS 89

                ROGER EGEBERG

 Date:        April 27, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

 Interviewer: Dale Deaton

 P.T.:        45 min.

 Roger Egeberg was a young physician when he first heard Mary Breckinridge speak in Cleveland during the mid- 1930s.  After becoming Assistant Secretary for the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare in the late 1960s, he had occasion to work with the FNS and visited the operation in Kentucky at least twice.  Egeberg terms the FNS a "beacon" in the development of the family nurse practitioner and the nurse-midwife, and he comments upon the attitude of American physicians toward the concept of midwifery.  He discusses his acquaintance with Mary Breckinridge and with Helen Browne.  Egeberg also explains the involvement of the FNS in various government programs.

 

                 79OH191 FNS 90

                 REGINA BLAKE

 Date:        April 26, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

                 Interviewer: Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:        15 min.

 Regina Blake learned of the FNS in the early 1960s through her friendship with Marvin Breckinridge Patterson.  She began sending annual donations and joined the Washington Committee in the early 1970s.  Blake recalls attending the FNS Fiftieth Anniversary Celebration in Kentucky.

 

                 79OH192 FNS 91

                 VIRGINIA W. MCKEE

 Date:        April 26, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

                 Interviewer: Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:        50 min.

 Virginia McKee became involved in FNS publicity through Florence Wigglesworth, although she never visited Wendover. McKee recalls Mary Breckinridge in middle age and describes her in detail.  McKee talks about the activities of the Washington Committee and gives some of its background.  She mentions committee personnel and discusses the details of fundraising.  McKee also comments upon visits and talks by Mary Breckinridge, Helen Browne, and other FNS representatives.

 

                 79OH193 FNS 92

                 MARVIN BRECKINRIDGE PATTERSON

 Date:        April 27, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

 Interviewer: Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:        50 min.

 Marvin Patterson recalls the visits of her cousin, Mary Breckinridge, when Patterson was a child.  She indicates that Breckinridge channeled most of her personal fortune into the establishment of the FNS.  Patterson also names a number of persons who helped to support the FNS in its early days.  She gives information concerning city committees, of which she has been national chairman, and the Board of Governors, of which she has been chairman.  Patterson's commentary reflects her long experience as a speaker in behalf of the FNS.  She remarks upon administrative matters such as the choice of a FNS director and also makes observations concerning Mary Breckinridge's philosophy of rural health care.

 

                 79OH194 FNS 93

                 EDITH SHAW

 Date:        N.D. [1979]

 Location:    Yeaddiss, Leslie County, Kentucky

 Interviewer: Ted Lewis

 P.T.:        10 min.

 Edith Shaw graduated from Moody Bible Institute in Chicago and came to Leslie County in 1936 to do missionary work.  She tells of holding Sunday school in a barn when she first arrived and also mentions the log cabins she saw. Shaw describes the trip from Yeaddiss to Hyden, about eighteen miles, in the various combinations in which it was attempted.  The small mountain farms, each with hogs, cows, chickens, and a large garden, are recalled in detail.  Shaw also tells how the people spent their time and comments that some persons had books in their homes.  Electricity reached her area in the early 1950s.  At the time Shaw came to the area no medical facilities existed, and she discusses the establishment of the Cutshin Clinic and the Cutshin Clinic and the Cutshin Bible Mission.

 

                 79OH195 FNS 94

                 ROBERT MONTAGUE

 Date:        April 27, 1979

 Location:    Washington, D.C.

 Interviewer: Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:        15 min.

 Robert Montague's grandmother, Ann Wilson, was a first cousin of Mary Breckinridge and assisted her in establishing the FNS in Leslie County.  Montague himself first went to Wendover in the late 1950s and was a speaker at the second Mary Breckinridge Day in [1963].  His wife is a member of the Washington, D.C. Committee, and his aunt and his grandmother gave a room in the new hospital in memory of his grandmother Wilson.  Montague was active in the Washington area March of Dimes and was interested in the FNS in conjunction with his health charity work.  He comments upon the political implications of the FNS as a cause and upon Mary Breckinridge as as administrator.

 

                 79OH196 FNS 95

                 HAZEL CORBIN

 Date:        April 30, 1979

 Location:    New York, New York

 Interviewer: Carol Crowe-Carraco

 P.T.:        20 min.

 Hazel Corbin visited Mary Breckinridge in Leslie County  when the FNS was being organized, and Corbin describes conditions in the area in the 1920s.  She was acquainted with early FNS personnel and recalls Anne Morgan, founder of the American Committee for Devastated France (C.A.R.D.).  Corbin visited the Royal College of Nurse-Midwifery in London and also the Central Midwives' Board.  She discusses Mary Breckinridge's midwifery training and her own travels with Breckinridge in England.  Corbin became a member of the New York City Committee in 1932.

 

                 79OH197 FNS 96

                 LILLIAN BARTLETT AND PHYLLIS CHISHOLM

 Date:        May 10, 1979

 Location:    Wendover, Kentucky

 Interviewers  Dale Deaton and Molly Lee

 P.T.:        1 hr. 30 min.

 At the time of the interview Phyllis Chisholm was a director of nurse education in England, and Lillian Bartlett was an educational supervisor who visited training schools for the Central Midwives' Board.  They comment upon a number of factors that changed English midwifery practices and also talk about nursing and health care.  Chisholm indicates that the English nurse never performs the particular functions of the American family nurse practitioner and that she, Chisholm, is opposed to the latter concept; the English nurse performs more of a preventive role and may never diagnose or treat.  The English midwife does not assess the condition of the patient during pregnancy as does her American counterpart, and the English doctor determines all treatment.  Chisholm talks about hospital facilities in England and the low incidence of home births; she is greatly in favor of hospital deliveries.  The informants discuss Mary Breckinridge and the application of her concepts to the FNS area.  All comment upon the differences between the British philosophy of nursing and the FNS concept of the nurse- midwife.  Some differences are seen to result from the orientation of Britons toward socialized medicine.

 

                 79OH198 FNS 97

                 MALLIE SIZEMORE

 Date:        February 18, 1979

 Location:    Smilax, Kentucky

 Interviewer: Diane Lewis

 P.T.:        20 min.

 Mallie Sizemore was born in 1907 at Smilax in Leslie County and tells of her grandparents' experiences with Indian raids in the area.  Sizemore also indicates how her family stored vegetables they raised.  She relates that at the time she was married she had seen Hyden only twice. Her family had a battery radio about 1935, and she remembers the mail being delivered on horseback.  Also mentioned are several doctors who could be summoned by telephone at Wooton's Creek before the FNS came to the area, and a few older women who helped to deliver babies.  One man in the neighborhood was reputed to be a witch, and Sizemore recounts his exploits.

 

                 79OH199 FNS 98

                 MARY HUFF STIDHAM

 Date:        April 15, 1979

 Location:    Hyden, Kentucky

 Interviewer: Sadie Stidham

 P.T.:        35 min.

 Mary Stidham was born at Confluence in 1909.  Because she was ill a great deal, she did not do the family chores that most children performed.  Stidham tells of a local doctor with no formal medical education who cured her of "the fever."  Her family had a store and brought in goods from Perry County by wagon and mule team.  Stidham left high school to go to work for the FNS at the Bowlingtown [Bullskin Creek] Clinic, where she cooked, cleaned, milked the cow, and fed the horses.  Her father, a member of the Confluence Committee, donated the land for the Center and helped to build it.  Stidham later worked for another center and for the hospital at Hyden.  She talks about community life and "workings" of various kinds.  Stidham's family was not particularly affected by the Depression; her father's small pension from the Spanish-American War provided some ready cash, and the farm supplied the rest of their needs.

 

                 79OH200 FNS 99

                 LULA BAKER

 Date:        April 29, 1979

 Location:     Keavy, Kentucky

 Interviewer: Sadie Stidham

 P.T.:        30 min.

 Lula Baker was born on Poll's Creek in Leslie County in 1912.  Since the next child, a brother, was much younger, she helped her father work the farm, and she also performed household chores.  Baker tells of taking her baby sister and brother,twins, to Wendover after her mother died so that the FNS nurses could care for them for a month.  She also comments upon her family's acquaintance with Mary Breckinridge.  Baker's parents made a living selling vegetables and teaching school.  She indicates that her grandmother, known for her cooking, boarded several people and served meals to travelers, and Baker's mother boarded workers from a stave mill.  One of Baker's two children was delivered by a country doctor and the other by a "granny" midwife.   

 

                 79OH201 FNS 100

                 JOHN R. CORNETT

 Date:        March 25, 1979

 Location:    Keavy, Kentucky

 Interviewer: Sadie Stidham

 P.T.:        15 min.

 John Cornett was born in Leslie County in 1900.  He left school after two terms to get married and then moved to Harlan County.  Cornett farmed until about 1945, when he returned to Leslie County to work in a coal mine.  Upon his return, he found that the FNS had been "the greatest thing that ever happened in Leslie County."  Cornett offers an overview of life in Appalachia, including transportation, working conditions, and medical care.

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