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0:00 - Introduction/Childhood

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Partial Transcript: Kennelly: This is Tamara Kennelly we're at the sound booth in the media building and it's March 26, 1999.

Keywords: agricultural engineering; Ford; harvesting; integrated; only child; Pine Hill Elementary; plowing; Pocahontas High School; tractor; volunteer

Subjects: African Americans--Segregation; Powhatan (Va.); Traditional farming; Virginia Polytechnic Institute

14:51 - Social Life

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Partial Transcript: Kennelly: When you were growing up and in high school, did you have much contact with white people besides the people you were doing the farming with?

Keywords: Democratic Party; Edward Finney; Hollywood; juke joints; Mount Calvary; NAACP; Pine Hill Baptist Church; Pine Hill Elementary; Pleasant Grove; rural

Subjects: African Americans--Segregation; Powhatan (Va.); Race discrimination--United States--History

20:23 - Attending Virginia State and Virginia Tech

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Partial Transcript: Kennelly: Now you went to Virginia State for your first year of college. Why did you decide to go to Virginia State?

Keywords: Agricultural Engineering; Charlie Yates; Edward Finney; financial support; Irving Peddrew; Janie Hoge; Lindsay Cherry; Matthew Winston; Novella Finney; Petersburg Va

Subjects: Virginia Polytechnic Institute; Virginia State College

32:27 - Education after Virginia Tech/Remembering Massive Resistance

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Partial Transcript: Kennelly: At that stage in your life, what was your goal?

Keywords: A.W. Farrell; Earl Swink; financial support; Frank Peikert; Front Royal; Harry F Byrd; J. Lindsay Almond; Ph.D; Prince Edward

Subjects: Michigan State University. Graduate School; Pennsylvania State University. Graduate School; School integration--Massive resistance movement; Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

39:37 - Experience in the Corps of Cadets and Extracurricular activities

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Partial Transcript: Kennelly: Back to the time of being a student, I understood that you were assigned to the room of two other students to prepare for drill and other Corps functions.

Keywords: American Society of Agricultural Engineers; Christiansburg; civilian students; Company G; confederate flag; distinguished military student; dixie; Football games; hazing; lieutenant's commission; President Newman

Subjects: African Americans--Segregation; Race discrimination--United States--History; Virginia Polytechnic Institute; Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. Corps of Cadets

52:01 - Military Career and mentors at Tech

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Partial Transcript: Finney: After I finished my Ph.D. degree, I went into the military for two years from 1963-1965.

Keywords: classified; Colonel William Tisdale; deferment; Denver Co; industrial; Phil Mason; Rocky Mountain Arsenal; Tau Beta Pi; transportation corps

Subjects: Military engineers; Military research--United States; Virginia Polytechnic Institute

58:42 - Experience living in Blacksburg

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Partial Transcript: Kennelly: I wondered how life was for you just in terms of Blacksburg as a community or as a town, if you felt comfortable.

Keywords: barbershops; Charlie Yates; Lyric Theatre; Matthew Winston

Subjects: African Americans--Segregation; Blacksburg (Va.); Race discrimination--United States--History

64:26 - Career after leaving the Military

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Partial Transcript: Kennelly: Now, I'm wondering what you did at the end, after you got out of the military?

Keywords: Assistant director; Board of Rectors; Carl Norris; Dr. Quissenberry; instrumentation; Janie Hoge; Jimmy Carter; Louis Wright; Mrs. E. Floyd Yates; Princeton fellow; Ronald Regan; USDA headquarters

Subjects: Beltsville Agricultural Research Center; United States. Department of Agriculture


Kennelly: This is Tamara Kennelly we're at the sound booth in the media building and it's March 26, 1999 I would like to start off with some background. Where are you from?

Finney: Originally?

Kennelly: Yes.

Finney: I'm from Powhatan, Virginia and the small community of Macon near the Powhatan courthouse in Powhatan County.

Kennelly: That's where you grew up?

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: What about your family?

Finney: My mother was Etta Burton also from Powhatan County. My father is Essex "Eugene" Finney, Sr. We grew up on a farm in Powhatan, my grandfather's place. Born in 1937, and went to high school and elementary school in the county. I'm 1:00not sure how much you want to know about my family simply ask me.

Kennelly: What kind of farm was it?

Finney: This was a general-purpose farm. We grew tobacco, wheat, corn, hay and we raised cattle, pigs, chickens and horses. It was a general purpose farm at that time, about 200 acres. My grandfather purchased it in the early 1900s by my grandfather. My father, Eugene, was born lived there all of his life, and I grew up there. Kennelly: So this was the family farm?

Finney: The family farm, that's correct.

Kennelly: How many children are in your family?

Finney: I'm the only child, but my father had, I think, 13 (siblings), so there were many aunts and uncles

Kennelly: Did you help with the farm work?

Finney: Yes, that was a very interesting experience and I enjoyed it. It was something to give you a work incentive and to help you learn to accept responsibility. It 2:00was a very good opportunity as a child.

Kennelly: Did you start helping when you were young?

Finney: Yes, as soon as I could work. I guess one of the things I should explain is why I came to VPI because that pertains to my farm background. When I was a young person growing up on the farm after elementary school, and beginning high school, we had horses and mules to do work. That was labor intensive. While I was in high school we acquired a tractor. In fact, our neighbor earlier had acquired a tractor, one of those Ford tractors with the implements which you 3:00could lift up and transport. It was of great interest to me because it reduced the amount of hard labor and enabled you to do a large amount of work with not much hard labor involved. Not only did I farm my grandfather's farm with the tractor, but my neighbor who owned a tractor encouraged me and asked me to help do his farming. So with a tractor and all the implements that go along with it, you could farm two or three small farms at that time. So that's why I had an interest in Agriculture because I grew up on a farm. I then became interested in agricultural engineering because of the equipment involved, the mechanization, which was a phase of engineering; I wanted to develop tractors and equipment, 4:00manufacture, and market them.

Kennelly: So you were doing quite a bit of work if you were actually doing your family's farm and your neighbor's? I mean, you weren't just going out to gather eggs in the morning. Finney: Oh no, it was plowing, disking, planting crops, and harvesting. Even after school in the evening I would go work on other farms. For example there was a family about two miles away named the Whitlocks. Joe Whitlock, who was one of the merchants and one of the businessmen had two tractors, and in the evenings after school I would go do some of his work, plowing, disking, and planting. He even had lights on the tractor so you could work till midnight. So it was fun. I enjoyed it. It wasn't that demanding; I did a lot of work and I enjoyed it.

Kennelly: Did people with the tobacco tend to go around to harvest one crop, put it up, then house it, and then go to the next farm and things like that?

Finney: Oh yes, let's see, there was my Uncle Spencer, Mr. Junius Venable, Mr. 5:00Johnny Hicks, and the Whitlocks, and the Worshams and the Heaths. This was during wheat-harvesting time, before they had combines, when they had binders and threshers. Those families would get together and go from one farm to the other farms to help each other, because it required a lot of people to bring the wheat in, thresh it, and handle the bags. So those farmers and communities worked together, and, of course, I worked with them in those activities.

Kennelly: Is this an integrated community?

Finney: Yes, the Worshams, the Heaths, and the Whitlocks were white. The Hicks, the Venables, and the Finneys were black families, but they worked together when it became necessary to do large operations when families had to work together.

Kennelly: Did your family hire people to help too?

Finney: No, we didn't hire anyone. Everyone was volunteer help so whenever someone helped us, we would help them, and that way it didn't require financial payment of wages.

Kennelly: Was there a big social to build a sense of community? Did you 6:00socialize together and have potlucks?

Finney: What I would say the major social activity was the wheat-threshing times. When of course everyone would get together to help, and the big meal in the middle of the day was lunch time. There were tremendous meals. The wives would fix large dinners; a wonder we didn't die, eating those big meals in the middle of the day in the hot weather. But those activities were part of the community activities.


Kennelly: Would those dinners be integrated?

Finney: Yes, the mealtime would be. That was about the only time when there were integrated activities other than work activities.

Kennelly: What kind of school did you go to when you were in elementary?

Finney: I started out in the local small school called the Pine Hill Elementary School, which was located one mile from my home. My grandmother taught six grades there in the school, so there were grades one through six. The students who were within three or four miles of the school would come for early education. So when I started school, at five or six years old, I went to that school, and then at about the fifth grade, they consolidated some of the schools near the courthouse area. Students who were in the fifth and sixth grades went 8:00to a consolidated school. There was a colored fair building, and all of the black students in those grade levels went to the fair building for their middle school. After finishing the middle grades, I went to high school, which was then the segregated high school called Pocahontas High School for grades 8 to 12. I graduated in 1954 from Pocahontas High School.

Kennelly: Was the first school where your grandmother taught, was she the only teacher?

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: Was it one room?

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: How many students were there?

Finney: I would guess about 40 or 50 students for all of the grades. At that 9:00time, the upper grade students would help with the lower grades. That is, those students who were in those upper grades like fifth or sixth grade would help teach the students that were in the first and second grade. It was quite a challenge.

Kennelly: I could imagine.

Finney: But that's the way it was.

Kennelly: Your white neighbors' kids, they were going somewhere else?

Finney: I believe there was a consolidated white school so all the elementary students that were white went to the elementary school in the courthouse area. So they had their schooling, but it was separate from us. The year I graduated in 1954 was the year the Supreme Court decision was handed down mandating integrated education in the state and also throughout the country.

Kennelly: How did you feel about the quality of your education?


Finney: I thought it was outstanding. I thought we had very good teachers. Of course my grandmother taught elementary school, but even beyond that point, the teachers we had were very dedicated teachers and very much concerned about their students and very good in terms of getting information taught to their students. Even in high school I thought we got very good instruction. I might mention, when I was in high school, a number of members of my family taught high school. The vocational agriculture teacher, Edward Finney, was a cousin; his wife Freddie Finney, taught eighth grade. I had an uncle, Emory, who worked at the 11:00school as a janitor, and his wife, Mary Florence Finney taught ninth grade English. She was also a ninth grade sponsor. So I had family members who taught in elementary and high school. The other teachers were also very good. The principal, Mr. George W. Ransome, and his wife, Alberta Ransome, taught in the high school and they were outstanding. Mr. Venable taught history, James Venable. I had another cousin Annie Willis Harrison, who that taught in the school. I'm not sure which subject she taught, but she was also a school sponsor for one of the senior classes. Anyway, I enjoyed it, we got a good education, and I thought we were well prepared for college.

Kennelly: Was there a big emphasis on education in the family?

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: The grandmother who was the teacher, that was your paternal grandmother?

Finney: Yes, Fannie Johnson Finney, my grandfather's wife, Eugene's mother.

Kennelly: Did either of your parents go to college?

Finney: No, my father didn't finish elementary school. He couldn't read or 12:00write. I have concluded that he must have had a learning disability because when I was going to school my mother and grandmother worked with him to try to get him to write, but he had great difficulty trying to write or sign his name. So he never learned to read or write. Nevertheless, he functioned well in terms of counting his money and doing the things that you would normally do; very few people would know that he couldn't read or write unless he was asked to do it. My mother went to elementary school, but didn't finish high school, but she could read and write, and function very well.

Kennelly: Was she involved with the farm?


Finney: My mother didn't do farm work. She was the housekeeper. She prepared the meals, cleaned the house, and did everything necessary to keep the house running. Of course, my grandmother taught school so she wasn't there to do the housework. And my father and grandfather worked the farm, along with myself.

Kennelly: So when you went off to college, who continued to work on the farm?

Finney: My dad did some, but the farm work gradually ceased being done because my dad, after I left, worked on the State Highway Department. He became a laborer on the county highway department until he retired in 1975. So the farm work really declined after I left. So that's the story of the farm.


Kennelly: Does your family still have that land?

Finney: Yes, my family still has the land. In the middle 1980s, the land was sub-divided and deeded to the heirs. That is, when my grandmother and grandfather died, they didn't have a will, so the land was sub-divided into eleven sections and each heir was given a deed of the property that they would have inherited from my grandfather. So the farm ceased being a farm; in fact it ceased being an operating farm in the middle of the 1960s. I graduated in 1954 and went to college, but in the summers I would come back and do some work to keep things going.

Kennelly: When you were growing up and in high school, did you have much contact with white people besides the people you were doing the farming with?

Finney: Only the neighbors who we were farming with, and with the local business 15:00merchants. I mentioned the Whitlocks. Mr. Joe Whitlock ran a sawmill and a farm and a small business on the corner of Rt. 609 and Rt. 13 where Macon is located. Across the street on that corner is a post office, Macon post office, Macon's store, which is also a general store where we did all of our shopping. It was operated by Ernest and Bernice Nicholls and their son Roy Nicholls who took it over after they passed. So I interacted with them, and we were good friends, sometimes, cleaning the yard or washing the car, whatever was necessary when I was in school. So they were good neighbors and good friends.

Kennelly: Have you experienced any racial prejudice?


Finney: Not from the people in the community.

Kennelly: Have you experienced any from traveling?

Finney: No, I don't think I traveled that much to experience that. (However, when I entered military service in 1963, there were limited accommodations when traveling by car.)

Kennelly: So you pretty much felt accepted as a person?

Finney: That's correct. Even though we knew that it was a segregated society as you are aware, we had separate schools, so I guess there was a general recognition of what your limits were in terms of interacting and traveling and having social contact.

Kennelly: Was there any kind of restaurants or anything there?

Finney: Yes, but we never went to any white restaurants. There were black restaurants and white restaurants. That is, the restaurants that were owned by black merchants and restaurants owned by white merchants. Of course, we never challenged the tradition because we recognized what was expected.

Kennelly: Was anyone in your family politically active?

Finney: Not when I was in high school. After I graduated from high school, I had 17:00a cousin who was a vocational agriculture teacher, Mr. Edward Finney, who became very active with the Democratic Party in the county and in the state and worked for candidates that he wished to support.

Kennelly: Was anyone in the NAACP?

Finney: Yes, certain members of the family were members of the NAACP

Kennelly: You would go to meetings?

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: So there was a consciousness?

Finney: Oh, yes.

Kennelly: Was church important in your family?

Finney: Yes, we were very active in the church. The local church in the community was Pine Hill Baptist Church, which was a mile from our home and very 18:00near the Pine Hill Elementary School that I went to as a child. That was the family church. At that time, church services were only held once a month for the rural churches. At Pine Hill we would have services the first Sunday of the month, but Sunday school would be every Sunday. There would be other churches that we would go to. On the second Sunday we would go to my grandmother's church, Pleasant Grove Church in Amelia County. On the third Sunday, we would go to Hollywood, which was another church. And then on the fourth Sunday, we would go to Mount Calvary, which was the church where my father's sister Aunt Annie Willis was active [Note: She was also known as "Aunt Nita": Annie Juanita Finney Willis]. So Sundays were church times. Also, Sundays were social times where the extended family would get together. For example, Mount Calvary on the fourth Sunday, after church, the family would get together and have a big dinner at Aunt Annie Willis' home (Aunt Nita's). When we went to my grandmother's church in Amelia, on the second Sunday after church, we would visit her nieces and nephews and have a big dinner. So those were church times and social occasions. And I think the reason church was only held one Sunday a month is because these 19:00were small communities and you could go support other churches during the other Sundays when they didn't have church locally.

Kennelly: And a chance to see other people.

Finney: And a chance to visit, that's exactly right.

Kennelly: When you were in high school, what else did you do for your social life?

Finney: Well, there were small juke joints or restaurants, or places you could go and people could buy beer or have a meal or have a juke box and do dancing. So on the weekends, particularly Saturdays and Friday evenings, that's where people would congregate and have a little entertainment and social interaction. 20:00So those were the things we were involved with from a social standpoint.

Kennelly: Now you went to Virginia State for your first year of college. Why did you decide to go to Virginia State?

Finney: Well, of course Virginia State, at that time, was the black college. It was the primary black institutional land grant college. I was interested in studying agriculture and that's why I decided to go there to get a degree in agriculture. And it was locally available, it was reasonably priced, and I had a scholarship.

Kennelly: You had a scholarship to school?

Finney: I had some financial support to go to Virginia State. You may not be aware, Virginia State University is a land grant college, a black institution. 21:00Many of the vocational agriculture teachers who taught in the counties throughout Virginia had gone to Virginia State and had their training in agriculture and they were teaching in the local high schools. And those vocational high school agriculture teachers were important links to Virginia State in terms of students going there who were interested in studying agriculture. So Edward Finney, my cousin, said, "well, you should go to Virginia State, I got my degree there, it's a good school, if you want to study agriculture you should go there". And he had made a recommendation to the professors and to the college and arranged for me to get financial support. I was able to get a job "arranged" working in the cafeteria, serving and mopping the floor for financial support. So that's why I went to Virginia State.

Kennelly: So what happened that you decided to transfer to Virginia Tech?

Finney: I was interested in getting a degree in agricultural engineering. Virginia State University, well Virginia State College at the time in 22:00Petersburg, did not offer a degree in engineering. They offered some course work, but not a degree. So in order for me to get my degree in engineering, agricultural engineering, it was necessary for me to go to an institution that offered a B.S. degree. So I decided to come to VPI, at least apply and to seek admission to get my degree in agricultural engineering.

Kennelly: So did you get a scholarship?

Finney: I had some financial support from --, I'm not sure what organization it was from. Was it Southern States? It was some type of farm organization that gave me $200 or $100, some support. The major financial support that enabled me 23:00to come to VPI came from my aunt, my father's sister. My father has a sister named Novella, Novella Finney. Her married name is Novella Ambrose. She also lived at home when I was growing up there. My grandmother, who I mentioned taught elementary school, Fannie Finney, suffered a stroke in 1947. When she had a stroke, my Aunt Novella came home and took over teaching the elementary school in Pine Hill. I have another aunt. One of Grandma Finney's daughters, Lillian, came home to look after her because she was paralyzed and bed-ridden. So when my grandmother had the stroke, two of her daughters came home, one looked after her and one taught school. When I decided to go to Virginia State, Novella provided 24:00financial support for me because my mother died in 1954, about a week or two after I went to Virginia State. My mother had a brain hemorrhage. So Novella then began to provide the financial support and encouragement. So she was the source of financial support. Novella paid my tuition here at Blacksburg. Every semester when the tuition came due, she sent a check to pay that. She also paid the rent for my boarding at Mrs. Janie Hoge's house. When I came to VPI, I was not allowed to live on campus, but the university had made arrangements with Mrs. Janie Hoge who lived at 306 East Clay Street. Novella paid the $60 a month lodging fee for my stay at Mrs. Hoge's house. So she has invested in me 25:00substantially over the years. That's the reason I came and how I was able to support myself through my family and through a couple of scholarships at VPI.

Kennelly: How did you come here the first time you came?

Finney: My cousin, this vocational agricultural teacher that I mentioned to you, Edward Finney, drove me up in his car. In fact, before I came up here to stay, I had made arrangements to come up to visit with the Dean of Engineering and the head of Ag. Engineering Department. And Edward drove me up and came with me in the spring of 1956 to have my first visit on campus. After I was accepted, he drove me up with his car with my clothing and trunk. That's how I arrived on campus the first time.

Kennelly: Can you recall any of your first impressions when you first got here?

Finney: Not really, I arrived at Mrs. Hoge's house and met the other students 26:00who were living there. I came on campus and arranged to get my ROTC uniforms, but nothing was especially striking that I remember about my first visit on campus.

Kennelly: Did you think of yourself as a pioneer?

Finney: Not really, not in those terms. I thought it was an exciting experience. I had known about VPI and Virginia Tech through contacts with others who lived in the county and visited and had gone to school here. And of course I read about Virginia Tech in the newspaper and magazines, and I knew it was a very 27:00good school. I didn't consider myself a pioneer in that light. I thought the other students who were ahead of me might have been pioneers, but by the time I arrived things were working pretty smoothly. Charlie Yates and Peddrew and the others had come before.

Kennelly: They had all been there about two years before you?

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: Were Charlie Yates and Irving Peddrew living in Mrs. Hoge's house too?

Finney: Well Peddrew had dropped out. He was the first student that I think after the first year, he was no longer able to attend. For whatever reason, I don't know if the pressure was too great academically, but I know he was no longer attending VPI. But Charlie Yates and Lindsay Cherry and Matthew Winston were still living with Mrs. Hoge and had been living there for one or two years by the time I arrived. So they had worked out all of the mechanics of going to VPI and living off campus with Mrs. Hoge.

Kennelly: Was it difficult not to be living in the dorm?


Finney: Not really. No, I didn't find that to be much of a handicap. We were fairly close to campus; it didn't take long to walk. And I thought we had a very good social environment at Mrs. Hoge's house with the other students. So that was not a handicap to me.

Kennelly: Did you eat all of your meals over at Mrs. Hoge's house?

Finney: Yes. We had breakfast and went back to Mrs. Hoge's for lunch and dinner. Our schedules that we had worked out enabled me to do that without any problem.

Kennelly: Did you ever feel like you wished you could eat with the other people?

Finney: No, I never felt that. I never felt I could eat on campus. And I guess it was understood that I couldn't eat on campus, so I never challenged that.


Kennelly: Did that bother you that you couldn't?

Finney: Didn't bother me. I came here to get an education, and I was getting it. I had very good interaction with the students and the faculty. I guess that's the thing that I appreciated most about the experience at VPI. I thought the students accepted me as a student, and the faculty was extremely receptive and helpful, and I thought it was a great experience.

Kennelly: Did you feel prepared that you were ready to go off running?

Finney: Well, yes. I had two years at Virginia State in Petersburg, and I thought that had well prepared me for the course work here. For example, when I was at Virginia State, I was preparing to take courses in engineering, so I took a number of courses in mathematics, chemistry, and physics. When I came here, I was asked to take a course in calculus or geometry or something like that. Well, 30:00I had that course at Virginia State, but I guess the feeling was it might not have been up to standards. When I took the course in analytical geometry and calculus here, it was a breeze. It just was not a challenge. I must mention that the professor who taught calculus here on campus really was a very good professor. I can't remember his name, but he was really outstanding. It was just a review, but had I not taken it, I would have been able to pass that with him, because he was very good. He taught things in a way that was very clear. He had examples and just his style was excellent. So I didn't have any problem at all. 31:00Now, when I was at Virginia State, I did get some extra help with math, because the head of the Math Department, Dr. R.R. McDaniels (and the dean of Arts and Sciences), was married to my cousin. In the evenings, once or twice a week, I would go over to his house and get tutoring. That helped an awful lot. So I didn't have any problems academically when I arrived on campus. I think I was well prepared, and undoubtedly the two years at Virginia State were very helpful. I probably would have had some challenges if I came here directly from high school. So I think that was a good decision to go to Virginia State for two years before coming here.

Kennelly: I understand that you received a letter that said, "We have decided that we can accept you at VPI to take our course in Agricultural Engineering." Did you have a sense that you were operating under an administrative 32:00restriction? I suppose in your case that's really what you wanted to do so it wasn't a problem. Let's say you changed your mind and decided to study something else?

Finney: I never thought about that. I had never thought about whether or not I wanted to take a course outside of the engineering, there would be a restriction. For some reason, it never crossed my mind because I was very definite in terms of what I wanted to do. Making a change or considering what the limitations would have been had I decided to do otherwise did not cross my mind.

Kennelly: At that stage in your life, what was your goal?

Finney: Well, I wanted to get a degree in agricultural engineering, and I wanted to go and work for Ford Motor Company and manufacture tractors, and sell tractors, and design tractors. That was my goal. Now you want to know why I didn't do that. Is that the next question?

Kennelly: I would like to know.

Finney: After I finished my degree at Blacksburg, that was in 1959, in fact 33:00before I completed my degree, the head of the Ag Engineering Department, Professor Earl Swink approached me and recognized that I had the capability of going to graduate school. He encouraged me to go to graduate school. In fact he made arrangements for me to go to graduate school by calling Frank Peikert who was the head of Ag Engineering at Penn State, and telling him that I was a good student and that he wanted me to go to graduate school and get a master's degree. He also wanted me to have financial support to do that. So Professor Swink called Frank Peikert and arranged for me to be admitted to Penn State for a master's degree and arranged for an assistantship for financial support. With those arrangements, there was no reason for me not to go to graduate school. So 34:00instead of going to work for Ford Motor Co. or International Harvestor or John Deere working on tractors, I decided to go to graduate school. That's why, because of the recommendation and the support of Prof. Swink and Phil Mason who was also a professor in Ag Engineering. So I think you get a sense, that when I say the faculty and staff were very supportive, I think that's an indication of their feeling for me personally and for the work that I did and the for what they wanted me to do.

Kennelly: Did you get your doctorate at Penn State?

Finney: No, after I went to Penn State in [19]59, I was successful there, and Professor Peikert, I mentioned that Professor Swink had called Frank Peikert who was the head of ag engineering at Penn State, thought that I should go on and get my Ph.D. Frank Peikert, at Penn State, had graduated from Michigan State, and had some contacts at Michigan State, so he had contacted Dr. Farrall, who 35:00was the head of Ag Engineering, A.W. Farrall, and arranged for me to be admitted to the Ph.D. program at Michigan State and also arranged for me to get a research assistantship for financial support. So when I finished at Penn State in 1960, I then went to Michigan State in the spring of 1961 and began my Ph.D. program at East Lansing. So that's the story to that.

Kennelly: I want to go back again. When did you get your Ph.D.?

Finney: In 1963, I started in March of '61 and completed my Ph.D. in August of '63. Let me mention another aspect of going to Michigan State, I'm not sure if 36:00that applied to Penn State or not, but I know that I received support at Michigan State. At the time when I finished my undergraduate degree, the state of Virginia had a program where they discouraged blacks from going to graduate school in the state. They would as a matter of fact, provide financial support for you to go to graduate school outside of the state. So when I finished at Penn State, there was this program where you could apply and get financial support from the State of Virginia to go to graduate school somewhere else. I don't remember how much money I was receiving from the State of Virginia for going to graduate school at Michigan State, but I know that every semester I would apply, and this money would come in to pay for graduate school at Michigan State in East Lansing. That was a very interesting program, wasn't it?

Kennelly: Wasn't that strange?

Finney: Very strange, but strange things happened at that time as you can 37:00appreciate. Let me mention something else to you if you are going to record this for historical perspective. As I said, when I came here there were certain restrictions on going to VPI. You may have read that there were great restrictions on the high schools in the state. For example when the Supreme Court issued the decree to integrate the schools in the state of Virginia, there were some high schools that closed, especially, you probably heard of Prince Edward County, which in fact closed the schools and had private academies created. When I was here in 1956-59, I think it was 1958, the governor was J. Lindsay Almond, and there was a great debate about integrating the schools in Front Royal. One evening when I was looking at the news, Governor Almond came on 38:00and had indicated that he would not close the schools in Front Royal, but those schools would be integrated. That was quite a decision for him to make as governor, because at that time, it was the policy of the "Byrd machine" that there would be "massive resistance" to integration in the state of Virginia. I think that was a significant decision by a governor who had been supported by the Byrd machine to say that no more schools would be closed, that they would be kept open and that the schools would be integrated. And Front Royal was the case that broke the line or broke the barrier toward integration. So J. Lindsay Almond, in my mind, was a brave person. I've always appreciated him for that decision.

Kennelly: Were you conscious here of people's response to this resistance?

Finney: Well, on the university campus those were off campus. The high school segregation and integration activities were off campus. And I didn't sense on campus that there was much involvement or debate or concern about that aspect of it.


Kennelly: It wasn't discussed?

Finney: Not that I'm aware of. Certainly not on campus. Not by the faculty or the staff. I guess you would appreciate that perhaps for an engineering graduate that probably would be nothing to be discussed. If I were a sociology major or a political science major, there probably would have been great debate about that, but not in our classes.

Kennelly: Back to the time of being a student, I understood that you were assigned to the room of two other students to prepare for drill and other Corps functions.

Finney: You know, I don't remember that. That's something I don't remember. It was in the article, and it's probably true, but I don't remember being assigned to a room. I know that occasionally I would go and visit a room and do certain things, but I wasn't aware that I was assigned in that light. But, that may be true.

Kennelly: So it wasn't like you went to prepare for special dress events or 40:00something like that?

Finney: No, because most of the time as a member of the Corps of Cadets, you were always in uniform. Now there may have been certain activities when I had to change uniforms or have certain paraphernalia that I would leave in someone's room, but I don't remember that part of it.

Kennelly: Well, did you feel comfortable with the other cadets? I guess the Corps--at that time, everyone was part of the Corps.

Finney: No, not everyone. No, there was still a civilian component to the student body, from 1956-59. So there were civilians as well as members of the cadet Corps. So not everyone.

Kennelly: So you had decided to join the Corps?

Finney: I had decided to join the Corps, because one of the options I wanted to have when I graduated was to be an officer in the military. So by staying in the 41:00Corps, I could get a lieutenant's commission, and if I decided to go, I could pursue a military career as opposed to working for Ford Motor Company, or International Harvestor, or John Deere. So that was an option that I wanted to have available when I finished my college degree.

Kennelly: I want you to comment on your experience in the Corps of Cadets.

Finney: It was a very good experience. I had very good working relationships with the members of the Corps, even when I came the first year. You know your first year you are considered to be a "rat" and you had to wear a white belt or something like that. I didn't have any problems my first year with harassment or hazing. Everything went real well with me. I had very good experiences with the Corps. I enjoyed it. It offered some discipline to my work habits and my activities. We took some trips and did some parades and I enjoyed it. It was 42:00good. I only rose to the rank of sergeant. I didn't become a lieutenant or a captain or a commander in the cadet Corps. But that was not one of my goals when I was at VPI. My goal was to get my degree and participate in the Corps, but not necessarily become a Corps commander or company commander or whatever.

Kennelly: But you were an officer.

Finney: I was a sergeant.

Kennelly: So you went on a trip with the Corps at one point?

Finney: Well of course, each year there was a game in Richmond. I don't remember the name of it, but the cadet Corps would assemble, and there would be a parade there in one of the main streets in Richmond and go to the game and have a good time.

Kennelly: So did you feel apart of the group? Did you feel that you were just as much in the group as everyone else did?

Finney: Yes, for those activities, yes I did.


Kennelly: When the Corps would be eating, would you eat with the Corps?

Finney: No, I didn't eat with the Corps. I don't remember the Corps eating while we were in Richmond. After the activities, I usually went and visited some of my relatives after the activities were finished. There were social activities somewhere else.

Kennelly: Would you go to the football games?

Finney: I think I went to the football games once or twice, but they weren't great activities for me. That wasn't one of my main social outlets.

Kennelly: Was it offensive to you when they use to bring out the Confederate flag at the football games?

Finney: It didn't make an impression on me.

Kennelly: They talked about the Highty Tighties playing "Dixie?"

Finney: No, that didn't bother me. That wasn't something I paid much attention to or made much an impression on me. It didn't bother me at all.

Kennelly: Did you have the consciousness of feeling excluded from experiences 44:00because of the color of your skin?

Finney: Well of course there were social activities on the campus that we could not participate in. I believe on one or two occasions we went to see President Newman to discuss the desire to participate. He was very gentlemanly, but he was also very firm that we could not do that. And, I guess, once he said that was not possible, we went back to 306 East Clay Street and went back to work, doing our academic studies.

Kennelly: What were the activities that you could not participate?

Finney: They had the cotillions and social dances, you know certain things that concur for the senior class and junior class. So we had gone to see Dr. Newman 45:00to indicate that we thought it would be appropriate for us to participate in those activities, and he made it clear that no, we could not. The board of directors or the board of trustees' policy was that we could not do that. So I assumed that if we flaunted those policies we might be expelled, and it was not worth being expelled from the university.

Kennelly: What did you do for a social life?

Finney: Here?

Kennelly: Yes.

Finney: Well, let's see, we went to Christiansburg. There was a school over there, so there were some activities over there that we participated in. And we just did things around the local black community to further our social activities.

Kennelly: So there were some people that you might date or whatever?

Finney: That's correct.

Kennelly: It was pretty much the black community and altogether with the black community?

Finney: That's right altogether with the black community.


Kennelly: Were there local churches?

Finney: Of course, there were churches. In fact, there was a church right next door to Mrs. Hoge's house where we participated in church activities.

Kennelly: Actually, you are listed in the Bugle as a distinguished military student, in the Bugle of that year.

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: So you must have done very well in your military community to have that "distinguished" adjective.

Finney: "Distinguished." Distinguished military student or distinguished military graduate. What the criteria is, I'm not aware, but obviously there was some criteria that the ROTC department had in terms of your grade level, in terms of your participation, and activities outside of the Corps. I guess there is also a summer camp that you go to at the end of your junior year. I went to 47:00Fort Knox, Kentucky, and you get graded there on your activities, how you participate, your scores, your test results, and your athletic activity. So based upon my academic standing, my participation, and events outside of the Corps, whatever criteria they had, they decided to award me the distinguished military student and the distinguished military graduate award.

Kennelly: When I looked at the pictures-- I should have brought the yearbook--Company G, I think you were in?

Finney: Company G, that sounds right.

Kennelly: That's where your name was listed. You're not in the picture as far as I can tell.

Finney: Oh, well I might not have been there the time they took that picture.

Kennelly: Do you think that was accidental?

Finney: I think so. Yes, I know there were some other pictures where they had the leadership of the Corps of the company. I think I was in that picture, but there were a couple of pictures that I was in associated with G. One of them I 48:00think I'm in civilian clothing. Is that correct?

Kennelly: Sort of dressed up. It looks like you could have been going to a dance or something, but I guess not.

Finney: I wouldn't think that that was intentional. It may have been some conflict that day, but I wouldn't think so. I wouldn't think that was intentional.

Kennelly: I guess I wondered if living off campus, if that would make a difference just as far as the participation?

Finney: Oh yes, it would make a difference in terms of participation. There's no doubt about that. In my mind, the things I didn't participate in weren't that important to me. So I didn't make a big issue of it.

Kennelly: When you returned from being a rat, was there a lot of hazing going on? Did you participate in the hazing of the rats of the next group?

Finney: Modestly, modestly. Not to a great degree, because I was not impressed with hazing of freshman students coming in, so I did not do a lot of that. I 49:00might have spoken up or gotten in someone's face, but beyond that I would not have given them a hard time.

Kennelly: You mean, as a sergeant, sometimes you didn't have to do that?

Finney: Yes, sergeants can be very difficult. Had I lived on campus now it might have been a different situation because I would have been in contact with the freshmen more frequently. In the evening and at dinner time you might have given them a hard time, but living off campus it didn't make sense to come back to haze a student.

Kennelly: You probably would have been removed?

Finney: That's correct, yes.

Kennelly: Did you feel like your authority was accepted?

Finney: Yes, I didn't have any concerns about my authority being honored and accepted.

Kennelly: It was like everybody was just into the military.

Finney: That's correct, yes.

Kennelly: You were a member of the American Society of the Agricultural Engineers?


Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: What did that involve?

Finney: The American Society of Agricultural Engineers is a professional organization of individuals that have degrees in Agricultural Engineering. There are about 8,000 members of the professional society. Its headquarters is in St. Joseph, Michigan. I joined my senior year at VPI (see page 76 of the 1959 Bugle) and have been a member ever since. They usually have one or two professional meetings a year where members present technical papers of their research findings, their research contributions. The society presents awards to recognize outstanding contributions from members of the profession. They have committees where you can get together to do work that is of mutual interest in certain areas like designing tractors, or developing standards for certain 51:00components of tractors, or developing standards for drainage and irrigation equipment. I participated in that throughout my career. I have been a chairman of committees. I was elected to the board of directors in the 1970s. I was elected a Fellow of the society, which is the highest honor the society can give. And so I have been participating in the professional society. As in any profession, there usually is some organization you should join and participate in, work with other colleagues professionally, and to grow professionally, and share professionally. So ASAE, the American Society of Agricultural Engineers, is my professional society.

Kennelly: And the Society of American Military Engineers?

Finney: Yes, I joined that when I was a student, but I have not participated in 52:00that since I graduated. It was more of an honorary society for me, the Society of Military Engineers.

Kennelly: Did you follow through with the military? You didn't go into a career with the military, did you?

Finney: After I finished my Ph.D. degree, I went into the military for two years from 1963-1965. I went in as a lieutenant. When you go to graduate school you can get deferments, that is, when I finished at VPI in 1959, I was commissioned as a second lieutenant. The military will defer you for a period of time as long as you are going to graduate school. Their rationale being the more education that you get, the more beneficial you will be to the military, the more helpful, the greater contributions you could make. I had a deferment from 1959-1963. When I finished my Ph.D. degree at Michigan State, I went into the 53:00military service for a two-year military obligation. I was in the Transportation Corps. I did my basic military training at Fort Eustis in Virginia. Then I spent the balance of my two years at the U.S. Army Rocky Mountain Arsenal in Denver, Colorado where we were working on a special classified project related to the military interest. So I did spend two years in the military, but I didn't go into combat. You might say my tour was a plush tour. I was in the military; I was in uniform, but most of my activities would be industrial related, related 54:00to the military interest, a classified project. But one thing I must say, when I was in the military, there was a colonel--Colonel William Tisdale, was my supervisor, and I learned something from him that has been helpful to me in life. Colonel Tisdale was a very well organized person in terms of business activities, in terms of industrial activities, and in terms of coordinating a number of activities at one time. The scheduling, the review, the evaluation, and getting the most out of the people that worked for him. He was a very good manager, a very good executive. I learned how to manage from Colonel Tisdale. My first management experience came from him. I must acknowledge that he was a 55:00mentor for me.

Kennelly: Speaking of mentors, as far as Tech, who would be the person you had here?

Finney: I would say I had two mentors at Tech. One was Professor [E. T. ] Swink, who was the head of the department and I mentioned his role in my going to graduate school. The other person who I thought very highly of, who was a very good friend and teacher, was Phil Mason. Professor Mason taught farm structures. He was one of the younger faculty members, and I think he was more in tuned to what was going on in Virginia at that time. He was very helpful to me in terms of my academic work and in terms of advice and guidance and going to graduate school as well.

Kennelly: He's still here.

Finney: He's still here? Have you met him?


Kennelly: Yes, he's retired.

Finney: He's retired.

Kennelly: They had an anniversary for Agricultural Engineering, 75 years.

Finney: Yes, if you met him, you will understand his style and his personality for working with people. He's good.

Kennelly: I also saw that you were a student member of the Tau Beta Pi.

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: Which is listed in the Bugle as an association for those who conferred honor on their alma mater by distinguished scholarship and exemplary character as undergraduates in engineering. So I wondered if you could say how you were nominated for this honor?

Finney: I'm not sure who nominated me, but Tau Beta Pi is an honorary engineering society or fraternity, I'm not sure which would be correct. It's an association I guess. But it's an honorary association for those who, as you read, have had an exemplary performance academically and in terms in participating outside of the academic arena. That is, the other societies and activities you would be involved in. So Tau Beta Pi was one of the honors that I received when I was here as a senior. I am also now a life member of Tau Beta 57:00Pi, and I appreciate that recognition from my peers. I suppose someone who worked with me and knew me nominated me. So, I appreciate that; that's a great honor.

Kennelly: So you feel your strengths were recognized?

Finney: Yes.

Kennelly: It seems like it.

Finney: Yes, I would say that's why I felt throughout my career that my experience at VPI was a very good experience. I thought I was treated fairly, and I thought that the faculty and the staff and the students accepted me as a student without regard to race or my color.

Kennelly: So there weren't any incidence of some faculty or staff with racial discrimination.

Finney: Not one that I can recall or that I remember. Even when I was here, not one. And that's quite an accomplishment considering the time that we were 58:00enrolled here.

Kennelly: Was there any as far as the students go, other than the fact that you were kept isolated?

Finney: No, other than being isolated from campus living or participating socially, none of my experiences with the students led me to believe that they were uncomfortable or that they were treating me unfairly or discriminating against me.

Kennelly: I wondered how life was for you just in terms of Blacksburg as a community or as a town, if you felt comfortable. Could you go to restaurants for a cup of coffee in Blacksburg, or for a meal?

Finney: Not that I'm aware of. I know one thing, we couldn't go to the movie theatre, except going up to the balcony. In fact, I think one evening, we decided to go down from the balcony, and we were escorted out of the theatre.

Kennelly: So you went down and sat downstairs?

Finney: Yes, and they asked us to leave. If we were not willing to stay in the 59:00balcony, then we would have to leave.

Kennelly: Were there a couple of students?

Finney: I think Charlie Yates, and probably Matthew Winston, and I decided to sit somewhere else other than the balcony. That didn't work out. In terms of eating in the restaurants, I really don't remember, and it's probably because we didn't challenge it. And I'm not sure about Squires Hall, the student center across the road, whether or not we could get something to eat there or not. I don't remember that. I know we couldn't eat in the cafeteria.

Kennelly: Was that very upsetting to you when they asked you to leave the Lyric?

Finney: No, we expected it. We just thought we would have a little fun, test it, see what would happen. After a while you know what the traditions are and what's expected, and I guess if you test it and you're successful, you're more 60:00surprised than if you test it and it doesn't work because you expect that it probably is not going to be accepted.

Kennelly: Were things like you expected when you came to Tech?

Finney: Yes, they were as I expected. You asked about the campus activities. You know one of the other things is that we couldn't get our hair cut in the barbershop. There was a barbershop over in the student building, Squires Hall. Of course the white students go over there to get their hair cut, but we couldn't go get a hair cut from the barber shop. Now after the barbershop closed, we knew the barbers, so after it closed, we could discretely go into the barbershop and get a hair cut. No one would see us go in to get a hair cut after hours. So that was sort of a little sideline artifact.

Kennelly: Were the barbers black?

Finney: Yes, the barbers who worked there were black. In fact, the head barber 61:00lived in same house with us at Mrs. Hoge's house. I don't remember his name, but he was the head barber, and he lived in Bristol. I'm not sure if he lived on the Virginia side or the Tennessee side. So he would drive up, be here Monday morning, he'd run the barbershop during the week, and stay at Mrs. Hoge's house during the evenings. Then on the weekend, he would go back to Bristol. So yes, I don't remember his name, but all of the barbers were black. The policy was that no black person could go in the barber shop and get a hair cut.

Kennelly: Of course there is a big emphasis in the Corps to have your hair cut. That's catch 22.

Finney: That's correct, but we had to get our hair cut somewhere other than the student union barbershop.

Kennelly: Anything else like that come to mind?

Finney: Well you know it's interesting looking back in retrospect. There was also a barbershop, is this College Avenue?


Kennelly: Yes.

Finney: There was a barber shop owned by a black barber, Mr. Sears, on College Avenue. Well Mr. Sears had a barber shop too, and he was black, of course, and all of his barbers were black. But we couldn't get our hair cut at Mr. Sears barber shop either. Well, the reason is because the traditions. At that time had we gone into his shop to get our hair cut he probably would have lost all of his other customers. We didn't challenge Mr. Sears. We knew what the situation was; he was a very nice fellow. In fact we would go over to his house in the evenings and the weekends to shoot pool for a little social activity. He had a very nice family. It was just the tradition of that time and that's the reality of it.


Kennelly: Did you make any white friends when you were at Tech?

Finney: Oh, yes.

Kennelly: Were there any people that you kept in contact with?

Finney: For some time after I finished I did, but over the years I've lost contact. Bobby Alderman was in my class, in Ag engineering, he was a very good friend of mine. We kept in touch. He did go to Ford Motor Company when he left. So I would see him, and we had contact at ASAE meetings for a number of years. There were a few, but not long term because everyone dispersed and scattered. Occasionally I would see someone on my job or with my work, our paths would cross. We'd have some conversation or go out and have lunch together, but no long-term, deep social contacts other than those.


Kennelly: Did you feel comfortable in class to talk and participate?

Finney: Yes, share class work, homework, and have discussions in class. That was quite normal. There were no problems there.

Kennelly: Now, I'm wondering what you did at the end, after you got out of the military?

Finney: I finished my Ph.D. in 1963 at East Lansing, spent two years in the military in Denver, Colorado at Rocky Mountain Arsenal. There was a member of the Ag engineering profession who I had known of for many years. His name was Carl Norris. Carl Norris was the head of the Instrumentation Research Laboratory 65:00for the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture in Beltsville. He either wrote or edited articles in the Ag Engineering Journal, which is the journal of American Society of Ag Engineers on instrumentation. I would read his articles every month because they were always interesting and pertinent, and my interest was instrumentation. Another factor was when I was in the military service, there were two or three people who would come out to Denver once a year to review some projects we were involved in related to biological warfare. They were members of the Agricultural Research Service at Beltsville. Dr. Quissenberry was one, Louis Wright, and there was another gentleman, but I don't remember his name. I was impressed with their 66:00professional knowledge and the way they went about providing advice to the military service. I had discussions with them about the Agricultural Research Service and the Department of Agriculture. So I decided, when I was in the military service, that I would seek employment at the Beltsville Research Center in Maryland, which is the largest research center for USDA. I wrote to Carl Norris and sent him an application. Carl Norris wrote back to me and said they would be very much interested in me joining his laboratory. So when I finished the military service, I started to work in the instrumentation research laboratory of Beltsville, Maryland. I started as a research agricultural engineer, and I worked on the development of instruments for evaluating and measuring the quality of agricultural products. When products are marketed, they have to be graded for quality. For example, the degree of wetness of wheat, 67:00whether its wet or dry; the protein content of wheat; the degree of the maturity of fruits and vegetables; the color of fruits and vegetables; their textural characteristics, whether they are tender or tough, or hard or soft. All of those things are involved in sorting and grading, and establishing the quality characteristics. So I worked in the laboratory to develop instruments for measuring, sorting, and grading agricultural products for quality. So that's where I started out, in the instrumentation research lab working with Carl Norris. Carl Norris is one of the finest researchers and individuals to work for that you could have. I worked in the laboratory from 1965-1977. In 1977, I was 68:00appointed the assistant director at Beltsville Agricultural Research Center. Beltsville had a director and two assistant directors, so I was appointed assistant director, which is a management position, assisting the director and managing the research programs, the laboratories, and the personnel in Beltsville. I did that from 1977-1988. In 1988, I went to Philadelphia as an associate director of one of the regional areas of the Agricultural Research Service covering West Virginia, Pennsylvania, all of the states up into the northeast. Then in 1989, I came back to Beltsville as the director of Beltsville Research Center. In 1992, I went downtown to the USDA headquarters in Washington, D.C., as the associate administrator for the Agricultural Research Service for the nationwide programs and research. Then in 1995, I retired. So, that's the story of my career.


Kennelly: Good for you.

Finney: Along the line, there were two things that I did in my career that were helpful in terms of my professional advancement. In 1973-1974, I was selected to go to Princeton as a Princeton Fellow, as a part of the federal government's mid-career program. I guess being an engineer, my supervisors recognized that I needed some training in management or in public administration. So I went to Princeton as a Princeton Fellow from 1973-1974, and that was a very good experience. I learned about public management, public administration, the history of science, technology, and society, and the role of our economy in world affairs, things of that nature. It was a very good program. Another thing that helped me broaden my experience was to spend a year in the executive office 70:00of the President. That was the last six months of Jimmy Carter's administration and the first six months of Reagan's administration. And you can appreciate that those were two very different administrations, but I worked in the Office of the Science Advisor to the President. I was involved in providing advice to them on agricultural research activities for the nation. So those two experiences were very helpful to me in terms of my career advancement and my career growth.

Kennelly: Very fascinating. Did any of your relatives after you attend Virginia Tech?

Finney: None of my near relatives. I had some cousins who have attended Virginia Tech, but no relatives any closer than that.


Kennelly: Is there anything else that you would like to add?

Finney: Let's see, I might mention that while I was here, on the Board of Visitors, at VPI, there was a member from my community, on the Board of Visitors or the Board of Trustees, whatever you call that board. Her name was Mrs. E. Floyd-Yates. I believe Mrs. Yates might have been a teacher at the high school in Powatan while I was there. Her husband was a member of the House of Delegates, so he was politically active in the 1940s and 1950s. That may have been a factor in why she became a member of the board of rectors or the board of trustees of VPI. But I never had any contact with her, I never knew what her 72:00philosophy or her views were on integrating the university or integrating the colleges and the faculty. But that was just a side note that I became aware of after I got here, that she was on the board of directors, and therefore would have had some influence on the policies of the university or the campus. But I imagine at that time, being one person, her influence probable would not have changed the Byrd machine policy because it was so ingrained within the state. I guess in retrospect it was a great experience, and I felt very well treated, and I think it has been a very important part of my professional growth and my foundation for participating in society. I am very appreciative to the faculty and staff who were here at the time I was here and I would do it again, if I had 73:00the opportunity.

Finney: Okay,You know one other thing I should say something about if I may?

Kennelly: Sure, anything.

Finney: Mrs. Hoge, Janie Hoge, who was the lady who made her home available to us as students, I do think that she deserves a lot of credit for what she did. Mrs Hoge was not a young lady when she had these students in her home, she was well along in age and I know that at times she wasn't feeling very well, but she was a great host she looked after us as if we were her own children. She fed us well. She gave us advice. She kept us in line and I just wanted to acknowledge her and her husband Bill Hoge and express my deep gratitude and appreciation to her so that's for the record as well.

Kennelly: How many students were there?

Finney: There were four students there when I was there.

Kennelly: It could get lively I suppose

Finney: It could get very lively and of course feeding four students at that 74:00time required a lot of preparing food and Mrs. Hoge was very thrifty, if we didn't eat it the first time we would see it again, but she was a great cook and a great lady. That's it.