Man is the only animal that laughs and weeps, for he is the only animal that is struck with the difference between what things are and what they ought to be. —William Hazlitt Tir«$ton« S3SW GASTONIA The secret of a good life lies not in the number of joys, nor even in the number of sorrows that come into it—but in the way both joys and sorrows are met. —Murray Banks VOLUME VIII GASTONIA, N. C., MARCH, 1959 NUMBER 4 23rd ANNUAL PROGRAM Photo; Gastonia Gazette At the Harold Mercer testimonial dinner in late February, the Firestone plant manager (second from right), receives citation from Dr. James Huggin, minister of Gastonia's First Methodist Church. Maurice Honigman (left), local brotherhood leader; and Dr. Sterling Brown (right), were on hand for the presentation. Dr. Brown was principal speaker at the meeting. 1959 NCCJ AWARD Plant Manager Receives Brotherhood Citation . For outstanding leadership in advancing brother hood and the ideals of human relations among men every where. . That was the citation which honored Firestone Textiles general manager Harold Mercer, when he was pre sented this year’s Brotherhood Award on February 26. Several hundred persons attended the testimonial din ner sponsored by the Gaston Chapter, National Conference of Christians and Jews, and held at the Gaston Country Club. The plant’s general manager —outstanding as a textile, civic, and religious leader—was pre sented the award by Dr. James Huggin, pastor of the First Methodist Church of Gastonia. Dr. Sterling W. Brown, execu tive vice-president of the New York City NCCJ, was principal speaker on the program which Was a part of the local observ ance of National Brotherhood Week, in February. Program committee chairman for the event was F. B. Galligan, Cotton Division superintendent at Firestone. FROM Seymour, Ind., Mr. Mercer is a graduate of the Uni versity of Illinois. Since coming to the plant here in 1935 from the company’s home offices in Akron, Ohio, he has made him self a strong community in fluence in civic, religious and business affairs. He is active in Boy Scouts, the Y M C A, United Fund; and church, school and business groups. Mr. Mercer is a director of the National Bank of Com merce, trustee of Gaston Me morial Hospital, director of the Gastonia YMCA, director of the Gastonia United Fund, and ex ecutive committeeman of Pied mont Council, Boy Scouts of America. Mr. Mercer is a trustee and a member of the official board of First Methodist Church of Gastonia. He has served several terms as Protestant co-chairman of the Gaston chapter of NCCJ. The general manager is a director, or an advisor, of numerous trade groups and educational institu tions. Among 1400 citizen leaders who recently met in Chicago to promote public safety, about 130 religious leaders agreed that accident prevention should be included in church programs as an important moral and spirit ual problem. Wildlife Emphasis Set March 15-21 The National Wildlife Federa tion with its State affiliates is this year sponsoring National Wildlife Week, March 15-21. This is the kickoff of a year-long campaign to provide “more and better teaching on natural-re- sources conservation in Ameri ca’s public schools, its colleges and universities.” Moviemaker Walt Disney, cre ator of the “True Life Adven ture” series, is honorary nation al chairman of the NWF, the na- hon’s largest conservation body. Each year, since 1938, the Fed eration with its state affiliates has sponsored National Wildlife Week as the beginning of a year- round educational effort to in terest citizens in preservation of our natural resources. This year’s program stresses a “conservation -i In - the - schools” theme, pointing up the vital need for teaching conservation in grade and high schools, col leges and universities. “Protection and proper man agement of our lands and waters are our national concern,” said Stewart M. Brandborg of the NWF staff. “We depend upon these resources for everything —Turn to page 2 All-Sports Banquet April 4 When Harry Grayson visits Firestone Textiles on April 4, he will join an illustrious list of personalities who have helped to make the annual All-Sports Banquet here one of the outstanding events of its kind in the Southeast. The internationally-known sports writer and editor will be featured speaker at the program which honors em ployees and members of employee families who participate in sports-recreation activities at the plant. A traditional feature of the persons read his column, “The program here wiU be the award ing of honors to individuals and teams with noteworthy achieve ment records in sports during 1958. The banquet at which Mr. Grayson is to speak will follow tradition as top event of the activities calendar at Firestone every year since 1936. AS VISITING speaker, Mr. Grayson will head the list of a number of well-known person alities of the sports-recreation world, who will be on hand for the banquet. Also attending as special guests of the company wiU be several leading citizens of the Gastonia-Charlotte area. For 25 years Harry Grayson has been sports editor of NEA, world’s largest newspaper fea ture service. More than 3,000,000 Scoreboard’', as a regular fea ture in the Gastonia Gazette. Preceding his appearance here, Mr. Grayson will make his cus tomary trip to Florida to watch major league baseball spring training. The sports figure who will speak here has been described as “a man who has the per sonality of a steam hammer equipped with a siren.” He was winner of the 1958 National Headliner Award for “consistent ly outstanding sports writing and columning.” The dean of syndicated sports writers serv ing some 800 newspapers, he has been turning out sports and news features for more than 40 years. Grayson was a Marine of ficer in World War I, a war cor respondent during World War II. He has traveled in almost every country of the world, in cluding Russia. The author of several books and a lecturer at numerous universities, Grayson is much in demand as a public speaker. EDUCATED in Oregon, he has worked on the Portland (Ore.) Oregonian, the San Francisco Bulletin, the old New York Tele gram and remained there through that newspaper’s merg er with the New York World, and until he was assigned to Cleveland as NEA sports editor in 1934. —Turn to page 2 Freedom And Duty Most of us in the United States believe strongly in free enterprise. But some times we forget that free dom and duty always go hand-in-hand, and that if the free do not accept social responsibility, they will not remain free. — John Foster Dullss 1959 MARCH 1959 S M nil w T ilii s 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 spring Comes Laughing Down The Valley February days flew by, fast as a weaver’s shuttle. Came March—and the time of year when Spring in her majestic processional re turns again to the land. Already tiny lances had thrust through earth’s prison, buds stood against the sky, and valleys were turning into green. Blossoms and blooming trees now spread their garments over the low land country and the foothills of the Blue Ridge, and ere long, will drape the shoulders of the loftiest peaks. A scene like this becomes a part of the warp and woof of March—when the last long streak of Winter has faded from the landscape and it is planting time again. Francis R. Welch breaks the season’s first furrow on his 55 acres of earth in the Chapel Grove community. A card grinder, Mr. Welch has been employed here for 23 years. He preferred to have the picture made with “Dynamite”, but would have you know that he also owns a tractor. His “steel mule” takes care of the weightier—and faster— matters of the farming task.