Tobacco Bag Stringing
Emma Cleary

CLEARY, MRS. EMMA, married; two children; aged 30; husband aged 60; resides in Wilkes County, N.C. Children: William, aged 12 in school. Vassie, aged 8 in school.


HOME CONDITIONS: Own two-room log cabin and forty acres of land. Only five acres can be cultivated. Husband is barely able to raise the crops on this land as he is in very bad health, suffering from plagiary which keeps him in bed under doctor's care a good deal of the time. He owes doctor about $150 but cannot pay on it. He cannot afford to buy medicine, since the only money coming in is from the bags, and has to be spent on food. The house is roughly furnished but neatly kept and clean. There is no electricity, running water or inside toilet facilities. Water is supplied by a well. If the bags are taken away they will not possibly be able to exist. He cannot hold a job on account of his health. The storekeeper has been giving them food since the bags have stopped coming in.

[Source: "Tobacco Bag Stringing Operations in North Carolina and Virginia." Richmond, Va.: 1939. North Carolina Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.]