North Carolina Newspapers is powered by Chronam.
It is not easy for me to talk with all of you about our first ten years
together. There are too many things in my mind and heart for which there
are no words. But I shall try my best to share with you a few of my re
flections about the past, and a few dreams about the future—I hope we
will all enjoy together.
In many places, I hear it said that there is no longer much oppor
tunity in this country of ours. There are too many people who seem to
believe that America has run out of frontiers where men and women may
expect a challenge, and stack their skills and character against the future.
I wish these cynics and men of little faith could see for themselves what
has happened here at Ecusta in the brief span of ten years. I wish they
could have been privileged to watch all of you as you converted a quiet
mountain valley into one of the world’s greatest sources of fine paper. I
wish they could have seen the good solid homes you have built up one after
anther here in our county. I wish they could have watched your children
in this community of ours, as they grew up in the last ten years, to take
their place in the world with priceless assets of good health, good educa
tion and good character.
I wish they could have watched as you built new stores, new schools,
new roads and new churches. These things all meant that here in our
mountains you found and won a place for yourselves on a frontier. This
frontier was just as real and just as rugged as any your great-grandfathers
ever met along the Oregon trail.
In almost every case, the skills and knowledge you possess today
were not passed along to you by your parents. You learned them the hard
way. They have served you well.
I know you will understand—because I am much older than most
of you—when I say I am truly proud of you for what you have done, and
very happy for my family and myself that you have accepted us with such
friendliness and goodwill into this community. For my wife, for my child
ren, for my grandchildren, may I say that the Strauses are very proud indeed
to be Tar Heels!
As to the future, it seems quite clear to me that there are still many
frontiers left for us to conquer together.
You know that several of our big paper machines are standing idle.
They were in operation at one time. For reasons beyond our control, the
export business, which kept them occupied, has disappeared. This is neither
your fault nor mine.
Now, we must find new paper products which can be manufactured
on these machines so that Ecusta can give employment to more and more
people. Toward this end, I am making strenuous efforts, and while, with
present keen competition in the paper field, this is not very easy, I shall
leave nothing undone until I shall succeed.