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February 27, 1987
Leisure & Life Styles
Jones reflects on life
and 30 years at UNC
Davis Library desk supervisor Clifton Jones, (photo by Keith Behon)
By Shelia Simmons
Five days a week, Clifton Jones
works as supervisor of the circulation desk
at Davis Library. Before working there,
he worked full-time at the Health Services
Library. Prior to that, he spent nine years
helping with research in the bio-chemistry
These jobs add up to 30 years of ser
vice at the University for Clifton Jones.
Now he says he’s ready to retire. He gets
tired of standing on his feet all day and
his arthritis bothers him every now and
But Jones is very competent at his
job. Employees bang on his office door
at least every ten minutes to ask for his
advice, or to get his help, as if the library
would be difficult to run without him.
The 60 year old Chapel Hill native is
not only an experienced worker because
of the years of work he has given the
University. He is a walking history book
for Chapel Hill. He has seen it through
growth and development and the Univer
sity’s administration changes, integration
and its continued quest toward prestige.
“I would have liked to have finished
school,” says Jones, who was forced to
support his wife whom he married while
still in high school.
He says that during these years, he
worked 15 or 16 hours a day. But Jones
Write for the
“I enjoyed it,” he says. ‘‘I love my
Jones backs up Chapel Hill’s liberal
reputation. He says that the town took
well to Chapel Hill's first black mayor and
the integration of the University.
Of Chapel Hill’s first black mayor,
Howard Lee, who served in the late 60’s
to early 70’s; “won by a landslide.”
Jones credits Lee with the upgrading
of the town's transportation and workers’
Lee also helped improve the relation
ship between the town and University,
“We didn’t have any real problems
with blacks coming to school here,” he
According to Jones, once the courts
forced the University to let blacks in, there
was no violence or anything like that.”
Jones says that he still does not see
any show of racism on the campus.
But he does recognize that the
University does have its share of
The main one that he seems to notice,
he says, is the lack of communication bet
ween University employees and “the
“I would like to see the up-grading
of the employees,” he says.
According to Jones, the administra
tion does not give employees a chance to
be promoted or to offer their imputs in the
running of the University.
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“Because of the problems,
employees don't stay in the job long
enough to become any good at it,” he
When Jones is not working at the
University, he works on putting together
a book about his life and his family’s
history. His cousin, a health educator at
the University, is gathering information
on the family’s descendants from North
Carolina, South Carolina, and Virginia to
add to the book.
Throughout his life, Jones has serv
ed as president of the American Arthritis
Association for North Carolina, and as
members of the Hemophilia Foundation,
Psoriasis Foundation and the Easter Seal
Jones’ interest in medicine stretches
back to the 1960s when Jones took classes
in chemistry under Bernard Boyd here at
Jones was educated in the Durham
City Schools. He is married and is the
father of four children, all of whom live
outside of the Chapel Hill area now.
Jones will be leaving the University
in April to devote his time to his book.
Upon leaving, he will be gathering up the
memories of past experiences here. While
most people who leave Chapel Hill exist
with memories of four years of classes,
lectures and football games, Jones will
leave with the memories and knowledge
of thirty years of history from this
He says that he has not done all in life
that he had wanted to. But, he says, he
has no regrets about how this life has turn
ed out or the years of service he has given
to the University of North Carolina at
• • • •
the Anti-Discrimination Coalition
Black Ink distribution spots
Hinton James dormitory
Dean Renwick’s office
Basement of Steele bldg.
School of Journalism
School of Business
Campus YMC A
Financial aid office
should call Student Government at
Variety of activities for Discovery
The Black Student Movement will ad
dress the issues of blacks and education,
careers, politics and society, as it spon
sors “Discovery 1987, A Celebration of
Black History” Feb. 28 in the Frank
Porter Graham Student Center.
This year’s program, entitled “The
Civil Rights Movement, the Past, the Pre
sent,... Our Future,” will feature a panel
discussion with various leaders of the
1960’s Civil Rights Movement.
Some of these leaders include James
Forman, former executive secretary of the
Student Non-Violent Coordinating Com
mittee, Jemil Al-Amin, former SNCC and
Black Panther member, Floyd McKissick,
former head of, the Congress of Racial
Equality and founder of Soul City.
Through Discovery the BSM hopes
to create an atmosphere that will promote
general knowledge about important issues
that affect black people, said Joyce Ward,
Discovery 1987 coordinator.
“We also hope to initiate interaction
between black students and faculty on
both predominantly black and
predominantly white university and col
lege campuses,” Ward said.
Discovery was started in 1981, accor
ding to Ward, to bring together students
from the different universities.
It also sought to bring black alumni
back to the University campus to talk with
students, she said.
Activities for Discovery are schedul
ed from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. A cultural pro
gram and sessions on education, careers,
black women, politics and racial violence
will be among some of the activities
scheduled for the event.
For further information, interested
persons should contact the Black Student
Movement in the Carolina Union or at
(919) 962-8345 or (919) 933-4586.