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The Daily Tar Heel Wednesday. November 30, 1977
Walter H ines Page of Cary was one of the
first Southerners after the Civil War who
believed that "sectional hostility was
needless" and that North and South should
be reconciled. He was also one of those
Southerners who had to leave the South to
achieve success and yet who always
remained a Southerner at heart. Journalist,
editor and novelist, he became United States
ambassador to Great Britain in the-latter
years of his life and was one of three
Americans to be honored in Westminster
Abbey (the other two were Henry
Wadsworth Longfellow and James Russell
The full story of Walter H ines Page is told
in a new book from the University of North
Carolina Press: Waller Hines Page: The
Southerner as American 1855-1918 (457 pp.
$15.95) by John Milton Cooper Jr.,
professor of history at the University of
As editor and journalist, Page said what
he thought. For a short time he edited the
Slate Chronicle in Raleigh and wrote the
famous "mummy letter," for which he was
criticized bitterly by the Old Guard and
praised highly by his younger readers.
During 1885 Page berated North Carolina
politicians as "warring, snarling,
malodorous and pestilential little men" and
North Carolina preachers for "preventing
constructive work with the problem of liquor
by preaching prohibition." He wrote that
North Carolina was "the laughingstock
among the States" and that "It is an aw fully
discouraging business to undertake to prove
to a mummy that it is a mummy" but that
the "mummies" were opposed to new ideas,
that the young people were leaving the state
because "the mummies were driving them to
When he was growing up in Cary (then
called Page's Station), Page was sometimes
embarrassed because his father, a hard
working saw-mill operator and turpentine
distiller, was not an avid secessionist and did
Tradition lives on in rural family
Continued from page 1.
fogged Etta's eyeglasses.
Her duties included scraping the bitter green
goo called skimmings from the top of the
Joe. red-faced from the steamy heat.wasintent
on turning out a fine batch of molasses.
"Old molasses makers used to claim it took 16
gallons of syrup to make one gallon of 'lasses." he
said.'lt takes 10 for a gallon of ordinary 12 for
thick. Sometimes, some juice, h'it don't take as
much boiling as the others. H'its all in the juice.
Some you can make "lasses out of and some w ill
"Old-time silver-drip (cane) is the best. 1
wouldn't make lasses out of nothin' else. You can
tell silver-drip growing in the field as it's heading
out. UTljust come up in the field and flop over
Just about midaflernoon, Joe lilted his long
handled, flat skimmer to the wind, and thin, hairy
strings of syrup curved in the breeze. He called
this test "hairing off." It meant the molasses was
The first batch oozed through the side-spout
and strained through old sheet cloth into a fiv e
gallon lard can. A length of cape dipped into the
pail brought up a thick glob of syrup -- black as
Tasting brought something akin to a smile to
Joe's stolid face.
"With silver-drip, you can have coldjuice at one
end and lasses at the other all day." he said
proudly. "1 could make 75 gallons in a day il I had
the juice "
Last year. theMillards made around 100 gallons
and sold them for $3 a quart. Local people and
occasional tourists come to their farm each year
to buy the molasses.
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Page: Southerner, ambassador, writer
not consider slavery a sacred institution.
Young "Wat" was more interested in books
and more influenced by his gentle and
literary mother. After education at Bingham
School and Trinity College, he taught for
one summer in Chapel H ill and his future
wife was one of his students.
At one time Page considered entering the
ministry and his later zeal for reform may
well have grown out of this early enthusiasm.
Page observed how many North Carolina
young people left the state for better
opportunities elsewhere and decided that he,
too, must follow this course. So he got a
newspaper job in Missouri and later wrote
-By WALTER SPEARMAN
Walter Hines Page:
The Southerner as American 1855-1918
by John Milton Cooper Jr.
Bargaining for Supremacy
by James R. Leutze
for Sew York World and the Boston Post,
moving from there to the editorship of The
Atlantic Monthly and later of World's
Work, where he was free to express his
political and social ideas.
Always concerned with racial problems in
the South, he declared: "There is no
undemocratic trait in the Southern people
that is not directly accounted for by slavery
and by the results of slavery." Wanting to
write about the racial situation for the
Atlantic, Page took a six-week trip through
the South in 1 899 and wrote his wife: "I
threw every subject out of my mind but the
Negro. I may turn black before I'm done!"
His keen interest in books led Page to join
Frank Doubleday in forming Doubleday,
Page and Co., which published Ellen
"Five years ago, they went for six to nine dollars
a gallon." Joe said. But some people would buy
the molasses and turn around and sell them to
make a profit. "The man that makes 'em ought to
git something out of 'em."
Commercial makers. Joe said, can make as
many as 500 gallons in a day by using motorized
equipment and by leaving the fodder (leaves) on
the cane. This makes for bitter molasses called
Joe's molasses is well known throughout the
area. This day. a couple from Florida bought 12
jars Christmas gifts for folks back home, the
A Green Creek farmer w ho brought the couple
to the Millard's backroad home said. "These
always is good. These other people, they make
'em to sell, not to eat."
As the afternoon wore on. Joe talked and
skimmed and mixed. Moving slowly into
memories, he chewed over each thought und
word. His poekelwateh. pulled from his Red
Came) overalls, read two o'clock his time.
Daylight savings time is one modern idea that Joe
just won't mess with.
"Back in tne'JOs.whenl thought it waslaw.l set
my watch by it." he said. "But I found out it wasn't
and hadn't done it since. Didn't like plowing and
then breaking at 10:30 and then going back in the
heat of the day. They say these highfalutin' people
did it, so they all could play goll an extra hour. Not
all laws are meant to be followed."
The late afternoon sun cut through leaves
tinged autumn gold and red. Etta funneled heavy,
dark molasses into the last of the orangejuicejars
collected from neighbors.
Ida and M attic had gone through a stack of cane
as high as the mule's head, and now Joe was
running low on juice.
One of the family's 10 cats lounged under the
AT A TIME,
AND AT THE
119 E. Franklin St.
Glasgow, Booth Tarkington, Frank Norris,'
Booker T. Washington and Theodore
Dreiser, as well as Thomas Dixon's
Southern-slanted The leopard's Spots and
The Clansman. Page's first novel. The
Southerner, was published in 1 909 under a
pseudonym and was. in many respects,
purely autobiographical. It also gave Page a
good opportunity to express his ideas about
Despite the fact that his life work was
established in the North. Page never really
got away from the South. He frequently
came back to North Carolina, maintained
contact with his close friends, Charles D.
Mclver and Edwin A. Alderman, and aided
them as much as possible in their drive to
improve education in North Carolina. One
of Page's most famous speeches, "The
Forgotten Man," was given in Greensboro in
1897 to kick off the educational campaign.
He insisted that North Carolina must
develop one of the state's most neglected
assets, the people themselves, by providing
the education they needed.
Page saw his chief role in life as a post
Civil War conciliator between the North and
the South. Not only did he encourage the
Northern publication of Southern writers,
but he worked extensively w ith the General
Education Board (supported by Northern
money) in improving race relations,
economics and health in the South. His
interest in politics led to his early backing of
Woodrow Wilson. Southern-born president
of Princeton University, for the U.S.
Author Cooper has organized adroitly the
essential biographical facts about Page and
has presented them to spotlight Page's role
as an interpreter between the North and the
The relationship between the United
States and Great Britain is seen in another
light in another new book from the
University of North Carolina Press:
homemade wheelbarrow. Dolly, the cow. waited
to he milked dow n at the barn, and all hands were
getting hungry. Usually. Etta said, she fixed
eornbread and milk for lunch on a workday, but
today went so quickly and busily that no one
thought much about eating.
One task remained before the last of the sw eet
juice flowed through as molasses: water had lobe
drawn from the well al the house and carried 50
yards or so to (he pan. Gallons had to be on hand
to keep the pan's sections filled as the final batch
moved down: otherwise, the pan would bum up.
Slowly, the family tended to the last of the
molasscs-makin' for the year. Jars of gold-black
'lasses vouched for their labors jars that will be
empty by this time next October, their contents
sopped up by so many homemade biscuits in the
winter to come.
Daily Tar Heel
"Bargaining for Supremacy: Anglo
American Naval Collaboration, 1937-1941"
(328 pp. $17.95) by James R. Leutze.
associate professor of history at UNC and
acting director of the Curriculum of Peace,
War and Defense.
Professor Leutze recounts the struggle for
naval leadership between the two countries
in the days preceding and during World War
II. Each nation, he points out. wanted aid
from the other in the war against Germany
and Japan; but each nation also was desirous
of arranging the cooperation in order to
come out of the war in a superior position,
the juggling for power and position
underlays all the conferences between the
two nations, all the strategies of deploying
naval forces and most of what sometimes
appeared to be a holding back of genuine
cooperation. Professor Leutze has taken a
technical and complicated situation and
presented its complexities in a logical and
intelligible fashion so that the book never
lacks coherence and readability.
Black students must maintain identity
Continued from page 1.
but this is just not true." she said. "I have been
brought up with values from a black culture, so I
am different from someone with a white
Gordon Curcton. speaker of the Campus
Governing Council, said he believes blacks must
struggle for identity in a population that is mostly
w hite. "You have to light to maintain your identity
at UNC." Curcton said. "To receive only an
education Irom Carolina without becoming more
aware of your identity is to lose out in the long
While segregation in sifme areas of the
University community remains well-hidden,
membership in fraternities is clearly divided along
racial lines. Only one or two fraternities attract a
: GEORGE BURNS JW ' y
y. JOHN DENVER m
Held " YOU HAVE SEEN GREAT :'
Over f ADVENTURES. YOU ARE ABOUT TO
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Rings shown are the America's Junior
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De Beers Consolidated Mines, Ltd.
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These alert and purposeful youths are the H-Bombs. From left to right are Mitch
Easter, Chris Cham is, Robert Keely and Peter Holsapple. This New Wave rock 'n' roll
quartet will perform all original songs at 9 p.m. today in Great Hall, Carolina Union.
Tickets are 50 cents. The H-Bombs travel to New York City for concerts Dec. 6 and 7
at Max's Kansas City, the club where Lou Reed's Velvet Underground got started.
The H-Bombs will record next month on the Ork label in New York. Photo by
biraeial membership from year to year.
In a February I977 article entitled, "UNC
fraternities and sororities: the last bastions of
white supremacy'.'" several representatives of the
Greek community said both blacks and whites are
given an equal chance to rush a fraternity.
However, students rarely pledge a fraternity
dominated by the opposite race.
One fraternity member said, "I think the South
has carried on traditions much more successfully
than the North and they've fought change every
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a Rose Garden of the 3rd Kind
step of the way. People who join fraternities are
the type that carry on these traditions."
Harold Wallace, student affair's director of
special programs, said many black students
encounter problems in the classroom.
"In recent years I have heard more complaints
from blacks about problems with white teachers,
and I believe there is some substance to these
complaints," Wallace said. "This makes black
students reluctant to receive help from white
from Cinema 5