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Interview with Louis Burney, October 2, 2002 | UNCW Archives and Special Collections Online Database

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Title:
Interview with Louis Burney, October 2, 2002
Date:
October 2, 2002
Description:
Interview of Mr. Louis A. Burney, a long time lawyer in Wilmington, North Carolina. Mr. Burney recounts his entrance into the Armed Services, as well as his struggle at Wake Forest University to obtain his law degree. Mr. Burney also contrasts the practice of law today to that of the 1960s when he began his practice.
Phys. Desc:

Interviewee:  Burney, Louis A. Interviewer:  Hayes, Sherman/ Haas, Mike Date of Interview:  10/2/2002 Series:  Voices of UNCW Length:  65 minutes

 

Interviewer: We are interviewing today Louis A. Burney from Burney, Burney and Jones, a law firm in Wilmington, North Carolina, and doing the interviewing is Sherman Hayes, the librarian of UNCW and Michael A Haus [ph?]. Mr Burney, to begin with, how about telling us a little bit about your early life and growing up here in Wilmington and prior to going to college.

Burney: Well, I was born May 30th 1932. My parents, we lived at 1704 Orange Street, lived in a bungalow type home, which my father purchased, or had built before he was married. And after he was married, of course he conveyed it to my mother. We lived on a block-- lord there was children in every house on the block. Uhm.. went to Isaac Bear School first to the fifth grade, while I was in the fifth grade, Isaac-- the students at Isaac Bear was moved to Chestnut Street School. And of course, I went to New Hanover High School.

Interviewer: Now was this Isaac Bear School the one right next to New Hanover High School.

Burney: Right, it's right ac- cross the street from it.

Interviewer: It's right across the street. Okay good.

Burney: It's right across the street from there.

Interviewer: And so that was elementary school?

Burney: Uh.. that was the first through the eighth grade.

Interviewer: Oh, they went all the way up through the eighth grade.

Burney: That's right. But the school-- th- they closed Isaac Bear in 19, I'd say 46. Something like that there, and uh.. moved all the students to the Chestnut Street School, which is now Annie _____ Snipes.

Interviewer: Okay. Good.

Burney: I spent my summers from the time I was in second grade, 'til I graduated from high school, I spent each summer on my uncle's farm at Harrowburn, North Carolina. His name was Pearson Barefoot, principally raising tobacco. And I- I know- I knew how to bridle a mule. How to ride a mule. How to slay tobacco. How to handle tobacco. How to string tobacco. How to succor tobacco. How to top tobacco. How to worm tobacco. I- I'm pretty much aware of the tobacco farming situation.

Interviewer: And this was before a lot of mechanical treatment then? So it was pretty much a hand operation?

Burney: It was all a hand oper-- everything was with mule and slays.

Interviewer: That's interesting. And when would you head out there? What time of the year?

Burney: As soon as- soon- when I got out of school in, in- right the 1st of June. We'd stay there 'til they put in the last barn of tobacco, and that was usually the first or second week in August. And now they put in tobacco what 'til October now.

Interviewer: Interesting. And you enjoyed that I take it?

Burney: I enjoyed it, but I was always happy to get home. (Laughter) End of summer. I...

Interviewer: This was out in the middle of rural-- what county was that?

Burney: It was in Columbus County.

Interviewer: Columbus County.

Burney: In Columbus County. Not far from Whiteville.

Interviewer: So could you get into Whiteville to do things?

Burney: Not unless we walked. My uncle didn't-- he- he did not-- s- some of the time we were there, he had a pickup truck. Most of the places we went, we went nothing but a mule and wagon.

Interviewer: Want to tell us a little bit about your family? Parents, brothers, sisters, whatever?

Burney: Well, my father was John J. Burney Senior. He was born in Elkland, North Carolina, which is in Bladen County. Uhm.. my mother was Eppy Barefoot Burney, and she was raised in Harsburg North Carolina, which is in Columbus County, and Helton and Harsburg about- bout ten miles apart. My father's, he-- my grandfather, my grandfather Burney was-- he was also a tobacco farmer and a merchant. My grandfather Barefoot was also a tobacco farmer and a merchant. My father...

Interviewer: That's kind of an unusual combination, or was that a common combination?

Burney: Well, I suspect anybody from Columbus or Bladen County back then was a farmer.

Interviewer: But the merchant part, that's what the...

Burney: My father-- grandfather had a saw mill and different-- and cotton gins and different...

Interviewer: Okay.

Burney: ...different things like that.

Interviewer: So they were tied into farming kind of?

Burney: And my grandfather ran a small store in Whiteville where he sold principally meat. Where he butchered his own cows and butchered his own pigs and he sold them there on the-- usually open on the weekends. My grandfather Barefoot was also uh.. upon the Board of Education in Columbus County and h- he had very, very small amount of education. My father quit school in the seventh grade. And says the reason he quit school because he knew more then the teacher who was teaching him. And-- we-- and I- I remember one occasion when I was a junior in high school, he asked me about my English teacher and I told him-- wondered what her name was, and I told him then h- he wanted to know what her first name was and I told him. He said "My lord have mercy, that's the teacher that I quit school under..."

Interviewer: Oh my goodness.

Burney: "...when I was in the seventh grade cause that I knew more then she knew." I had his teacher. And my father, I'm not really sure what he did before he went in the army. He joined the army. He tried to get in the army and he was turned down. He was uh.. he was 4F, and he went and had some type of operation which would permit him to go in the army. So he went in the army and he served in France in the First World War. And when he came home, he formed his own business. He worked- he went to work for the Atlantic Coast Line first and he saw that things were not going well, how the Atlantic Coast Line was not being fair with the rate charges they were- they were charging. He and another man opened an office called Equitable Freight Receipts. They had one here and one in, I believe, Greenville, South Carolina. And what they would do, they would take these people's bill of labors and so and go and find out where the Atlantic Coast Line had over charged. And then they would have lawsuits brought against the Coast Line or _______ said he was quite successful in that. Then he-- while he was doing that, he went through a little law school here in Wilmington called Wilmington Law School, which Mr. Edmond Rogers and his wife were the two teachers at that law school. And he went there, he and uh.. Royce McClellan, they went together and they both took the bar. At that time your bar examination was oral. And they both passed the bar and they came back to Wilmington, have to open up partnership name of Burney and McClellan.

Interviewer: And he really had a seventh grade...

Burney: He had a seventh grade education.

Interviewer: But he...

Burney: Never- never went to high school, never went to college. But he did, while he was with the bar, he went to Wake Forest and did- Wake Forest College and did some studying up there during the summer.

Interviewer: But that's pretty amazing that he...

Burney: He had no formal education whatsoever. He had one of the mind and you just, it's- it's unbelievable his memory and what he could remember. My mother was-- she was-- my father was one of 11 or 12 children, and my mother was one of 11 or 12 children. And my mother, she went to Bush Creek Academy, which is now Campbell University. She went there and uh.. graduated from there I think when she was 17 years old. On the way home from there, she stopped in Wilmington and got a job at the Atlantic Coast Line. Went home for the weekend, got her clothes, came back to Wilmington and went to work, and she meet my- my dad working at the Coast Line also. And uh.. b- course they were married.

Interviewer: And they grew up just ten miles apart.

Burney: They did-- they didn't know each other. (Inaudible)

Interviewer: And they ended up in Wilmington. That's kind of interesting. Then you're going on to college, where did you go to undergraduate school?

Burney: I went to Wake Forest. I finished high school in 1950. Went to Wake Forest course of September 1950. My brother, John, was a third year law student at that time. He lived I reckon about a block from-- I roomed in a home there with Doctor Beverley Lake. He was twice a candidate for governor and later came a s- Supreme Court Justice of North Carolina Supreme Court.

Interviewer: You lived in his house?

Burney: I lived in his- Doctor Lake's home for f- uh.. four years.

Interviewer: Well, isn't that interesting. And was this pretty normal that he would always run out to...?

Burney: Every-- nearly everyone in Wake Forest wh-- there was only just two or three dorms, th- there's about 17 hundred, 18 hundred students there at that time. And just about every house in Wake Forest had college students, rented rooms to college students.

Interviewer: Interesting.

Burney: I paid Doctor Lake 50 dollars a semester to live in his home. And I would eat that much in bread and milk every- about every night. When I started at Wake Forest, it was $240 a semester. That was in 1950. No ex- uh.. $240 a year, not a semester. It was $60 for general fees and $60 for tuition. So it cost $240 and I was recently looking at uh.. My father kept records of most everything. My first year in college cost him about $725.

Interviewer: Still a lot of money though.

Burney: Cabin, books, room, board.

Interviewer: Probably then though, that was a lot of-- to push, right?

Burney: I didn't want for anything while I was there.

Interviewer: Oh, that's good. And later in life as you got involved with Doctor Lake, part of it was that you just knew him so well.

Burney: I knew Doctor Lake very well, and his son, Beverley Lake Junior, he was-- Beverley was still in high school when I went to live in their home. And uh.. I went three years then to the army. When I came back, B- Beverley didn't graduate from high school. He went from-- to junior high school to Wake Forest and he- and uh.. he is now Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court. In fact I'm-- he's coming here Friday and I'm having lunch with him Friday. He and I very, very close friends.

Interviewer: Oh, that's great.

Burney: Like he'll tell you that I'm the closest thing to a brother he's ever had. And John used to baby-- m- my freshman year, when Doc and Ms Lake would go out of town, we get John and his wife would come over and baby sit for- for Beverley.

Interviewer: Which wasn't too hard, I don't think, was it?

Burney: No. No. He was in high school, and I was in college, but Ms Lake still (inaudible) (laughter). He was older enough to take care of himself, but she uhm.. she wanted somebody there to look after him.

Interviewer: Probably John's wife was who he wanted over there?

Burney: Well that was probably (inaudible).

Interviewer: Well, that is great.

Burney: But I went to Wake Forest for three years. I wasn't a particularly good student. It ended in my third year. And I-- it- it k- kind of looked like to me I might not graduate the next year. The Korean War was going on at that time. And of course, the Korean War ended in August of 1953. I was working at Coca Cola Company. I- I worked on the Coca Cola truck for three summers and I was carrying dra- and the draft board, once a week we d-- that was on one of the routes that I was on. And after the Korean War ended and I thought to myself "You know the best time to go in the army is right after a war, not just before one." And so I decided that I would volunteer for the draft. And one day I was carrying Coca Cola, then the draft board. And Ms Greenhowe and Ms Holland where both working in there, who I knew very well, and I told Ms Greenhowe that I'd like to volunteer for the draft. And uh.. she said "When do you want to go?" I said "Well I," this was in August, and I said "Well, I'll go in September" She said "Louis, it's still awfully hot in September." I said "Well, I'll go in October then." So three or four days or a week or so later, I received my notice to report there.

Interviewer: And did you work for Coca Cola, did you know that, was it Hugh Taffs had been running that?

Burney: Mr Hugh Taff [ph?]. He was not the manager of it, he owned it.

Interviewer: Yeah, right.

Burney: Mr Walter Sheffield was the manager...

Interviewer: Okay.

Burney: ...of the Coca Cola plant. And he my father were very close friends. They had roomed together at the YMCA before my father was married.

Interviewer: So Hugh Taff was out of it then, and by that point?

Burney: Well he-- Mr Hugh Taff still owned it. But he- he didn't- he was not the manager of it though. They had another office across the street where his son, Oliver Hugh Tafford, they had the electric bottling company and several other businesses, and all that was managed from over there. But actually the management of the company, Hugh Taff did not management that. I worked there three summers.

Interviewer: Great.

Burney: I worked there four summers, 'cause I worked there the first summer I came out of the army.

Interviewer: So how long was your army interlude then?

Burney: I was in the army two years. Went in the army-- do you want me to tell you about that?

Interviewer: Just a little?

Burney: Sure.

Interviewer: Sure.

Burney: I went in the army in October 1953. Did my basic training at Fort Jackson, South Carolina. Over the seventh week there, everyone received notices of where they were going for the second eight weeks and nearly every boy in the south, in my c- uh.. company basic training w- went to MP school at Camp Gordon. And went to Camp Gordon, went uh.. MP school for eight weeks, and unbelievably, nearly every one of us was sent to Fort Hood, Texas from the uh.. to be in the military police there. I had learned how to type while I was in college and I didn't like to dive, and he found out I was taking typing in college. Which is one of the smartest moves I ever did. I really did it to pick up quality points. But when I got to Fort Hood Texas, out of your manuscript, they'd look on there, and they saw that I could do some typing, and so they s-- I went to work at the Provo Marshall's office typing- typing a journal and a log. And I did that until I got orders to go to Vienna, Austria. And uh.. I left- I left uh.. Fort Hood at I reckon November 1954 and went to Vienna, Austria and that was the finest duty anybody in the United States Army could have. Vienna at that time was behind Iron Curtin, just like Berlin was, but Vienna was a four power city and divided into sections of American, British, French and the Russian.

Interviewer: I didn't realize that.

Burney: And while they had what you call the International Patrol in Vienna, Austria, which the registrar, they called it four in a jeep. And it-- Vienna was divided into four sections and in each- in each section, you'd have one patrol unit with an American, British, Russian and a French.

Interviewer: Frenchman. Yeah.

Burney: Frenchman all and w-- riding in the car together. And there weren't but 15 people in the international patrol, and I'd been there a- a couple of weeks and I got a notice go to see the company commander, that he was interviewing people for the international patrol and they were accepting two. And he accepted me for duty in the international patrol. And without a doubt, I v-- I enjoyed that more then anything that I've ever done in my life.

Interviewer: Interesting.

Burney: That was...

Interviewer: So tell us a little about what that involved. Could they all talk to each other?

Burney: Well you-- well the British and the American could talk. (Laughter) We got a lot of free wit. But if-- what little we use-- y- you'd be surprised in how quick a GI can pick up a little bit of language in a foreign country. And uh.. we called it the GI Deutsch, where the...

Interviewer: GI Deutsch. (Laughter)

Burney: That's-- (inaudible) spoke in the field, you would have spoken the GI Deutsch. But uh.. what little talking we did do that, you know, it was mostly a-- in German between the French and the Russian. But uh.. typical tour or but-- eight hour tours, three hour- three tours a day. And you usually work three days or four days and then a day off. And uh.. it was spit shine. When I- when I was selected to go in to the international patrol, my company commander, he gave me one week just to polish my boots and my leather and get ready. And uh...

Interviewer: So what did you actually do? March around?

Burney: We- we rode- we rode in on uh.. we had an automobile. In fact, I have a replica of one which is-- it was a '52 Chevrolet and uh.. but we just-- if you had the American's zone, you patrolled the American zone. There's one- one t- tour of that. And the French zone, you know, the- there was one patrol all the time in those particular- in the particular zone.

Interviewer: So you were really police. You were looking for problems?

Burney: When-- well, I- I had a few problems while I was on the- I remember one pa- one p- particular time that we had the British zone. Got up-- we were at lunch and I got a phone call from the uh.. the desk sergeant, to tell me that some-- there was a Russian patrol in the British zone, and uh.. they told me where they were located. And I went-- of course, I told the British soldier, or the British IP rather, and we went there and we-- of course, we found them and there was a Russian lieutenant, a sergeant, four or five privates and-- He was carrying a pistol, the others were carrying Tommy guns and we heard all of these Austrians, they were just hollering and raging, saying, because the Russians, they knew they weren't s- supposed to be in the British zone. And we stopped them. Uh.. the Russian got out and got this lieutenant to come over to the car and w- he got in the car and he sat between the Russian, and I had a Russian and-- who's sitting in the front seat and he spoke as pretty English to me as you've ever heard. T- right, left, told me to g- go into the uh.. Russian compound where they were from. We drove there and I h- uh.. they got out and went in, came back and- came back, the Russian truck came out and they went over and picked up these guys and took all of the Russians home. But it's a funny thing in Vienna, every place that the Russians had, you'd go by there and they'd be out front with sub-machine guns, and you'd go by an American place or a British place, and there would- wouldn't anybody be- be standing at the door. But we got along splendidly with the Russians in Berlin. It was-- in fact, Vienna was the only place in the world where the Americans and the Russians worked together. And I had some very good friends in the Russian soldiers. They- they were kind of distant when you first got started, but as soon as they learned to know you, what you were and so on-- I think of them often and I'm sure there's several of them that think of me every now and then.

Interviewer: Now what about this British soldier talking to a southern accented boy. Did you do okay with that?

Burney: (laughter) Well, I guess-- I had- I had trouble understanding them as much as he had (laughter).

Interviewer: I would bet.

Burney: The only thing I didn't like, I didn't particularly like eating with them. If-- when you had the uhm.. if you had the British zone, you ate in the British mess.

Interviewer: Oh, really?

Burney: And if you had the French zone, you ate in the British mess, and American a- but- but when we had the Russian zone, we didn't eat with them, we ate in the city hall of Vienna. They had a rented room there where we went there and ate. And the nice thing about the French zone, they serve wine with every meal. That was...

Interviewer: Have you traveled since then?

Burney: I've been...

Interviewer: Did this start you?

Burney: Yes. I've been back to Vienna. Yeah.

Interviewer: I wondered that.

Burney: I just- I just couldn't believe how it had progressed. It was of such a poor place when I was there, and everything, you'd go in the store and everything they had, they'd have it in the one room. You'd go and just about the rest of the store'd be- be vacant. They had nearly everything there. But now, it- it-- I just couldn't believe the progress...

Interviewer: And that was still nine years after the...?

Burney: That was in nine (inaudible).

Interviewer: '54. Wow.

Burney: Nine years after.

Interviewer: Still really poor, then.

Burney: It was a poor place. They never dared, come nine o'clock at night, Vienna was a, it was a dead town. Nothing going on.

Interviewer: Interesting.

Burney: But it was a-- I love that place. I b- but I got on that bus to come home, I was- I was ready to come home, but the tears ran down my face. I really hated to leave Vienna. I- I loved it. That's my second favorite city.

Interviewer: Good. So you're coming back now, and you finally get out of the army?

Burney: Came back still-- I still had a year to go in college, maybe a year and a half. I only-- on my way home, my father died the day before we landed in New York. I got a telegram, we were going through the Azul Islands, and I could see a American flag flying on the air field over there and I- I got to- I got this funny feeling that something's wrong at home. And I just thought to myself "I- I need to get to that airfield and get home." And within four, five minutes, it announced on the loudspeaker for me to report to the uhm.. I forgot the name of the room they called it, what they called it in the navy. Anyway, I went there and they had a Chaplin there and he told me-- read me a telegram that said my father had a week to live. That he had cancer and he died the night d-- the night before I l- landed in New York. Of course, the- the Red Cross and- and I- I couldn't say enough nice things about them. When that ship landed, they were there beside the ship, airplane tickets, everything to fly me home. Red Cross took me to the airport. And I came home, I reckon I stayed a week, a week and a half, and went back to Fort Jackson. Got discharged, got discharged one day and I was at Wake Forest the next day registering at the- the college.

Interviewer: Wow.

Burney: They I- I really went- I went in the Army in October and it was- was drafted for two years and the reserve for six years. But if you were going back-- if you were in the army and going to college and got accepted, they would give you an early discharge.

Interviewer: Oh, good.

Burney: So I got out in somewhere around the 1st of September. Wake Forest opened early that year, 'cause it was the last at the old campus. And they were going-- planning on moving in May, so they started school about three weeks early, which helped me get out of the army three weeks early.

Interviewer: So, did you go into law at that point?

Burney: I- I went back in- I went back it took me a semester and a half-- it t- took me three semesters to graduate. And I still-- well I really didn't know what I wanted to do when I came out of the army. I- I still didn't know what I wanted to do. I remember when I, when I went to Wake Forest, D- Doctor Lake, who I spoke of earlier, asked me what I w- wanted to do in life, and I told him "I- I really don't know." He said "Well Louis, don't worry about it." He said "90% of the students who come here don't know what they're going to do, and the other 10% change their mind after they get here."

Interviewer: (laughter).

Burney: So, I decided while I was in sch-- in graduate school, I wanted to go to law school. And I walked over to the law school one afternoon to talk to the dean, Dean Carol Weathers, and I told him I'd like to go to law school, and he said "Well write me a letter why you want to be a lawyer." So I wrote him a letter said why I would like to be a lawyer, and of course I'd been pretty well told what to put in it about helping people. And it uh.. so it did-- I didn't fill out any long application to go to law school, there was no LSATs or anything like that. If they- if they had, I couldn't get in Wake Forest now, much less Wake Forest Law School with the- with the cri- with the criteria they have now. But uh.. my last semester in college, it was- it was going to be close whether I was going to graduate, to tell you the truth. I made four As and two Bs that-- my last semester.

Interviewer: Well that's good.

Burney: I carried my grades over there and he said "Louis, I just wish these two Bs could have been As." I mean, I was tickled to death with the grades I got, and he said "I'm going to- I'm going to let you in law school." And I remember the induct-- we had one of the, Professor James Sizemore there was-- I started in January. I won't tell you what they call that class, what the rest of the law school called it. But uh.. there was- there as nine of us that started.

Interviewer: That's all. It was really small then.

Burney: It was very small. There was nine of us, and uh..

Interviewer: This would have been what year then?

Burney: This would have been in 1950-- January of 1957.

Interviewer: '57.

Burney: And the- the professor that critiqued us, if-- now if you were an A student in undergraduate school, you were going to find it tough getting along and if you were a B student, this-- you were going to have problems, and if you were a C student in a grad school, you just may be wasting your time. And I thought "My gosh, I just want to hang my.." But I'm going to tell you the truth, I made the best grades in law school, I made it from the first grade through college. I made my highest-- the highest grades I made was in law school.

Interviewer: So you found what you liked?

Burney: I- I loved it. I studied and I applied myself, I never went to class-- I- I know the entire time I was sch-- in law school, I never went to class unprepared.

Interviewer: Do you think maybe going away to the army made a big difference?

Burney: I think (inaudible) I think that had a heck of a lot to do with it. And of course, losing my father too. I wanted to-- I wanted to do good for him.

Interviewer: Now he was a lawyer, and your brother by this point was already out as a lawyer?

Burney: My father was, he- he was city attorney, and then he ran for the s- l- what they called a district attorney. Back then they called a- they called it solicitor then. He was solicitor, and then he ran for the Judge of the Superior Court. He ran against Clifton Moore from Burgaw who's later became-- he became solicitor later on and he later became a Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court. But he and my father, they ran against each other and then they, after that, they became the very, very best of friends. In fact they owned a hunting camp together in Pender County, which my brother and I now own.

Interviewer: Did you feel pressure from your family to become a lawyer?

Burney: No.

Interviewer: Or what this really your own choice?

Burney: I've-- never one-- no one ever put any pressure on me whatsoever by being a lawyer. My s- my sole decision.

Interviewer: That's good.

Burney: I really didn't know what I'd do-- what else to do, tell you the truth. And I don't know what else I could have done in life to make a- make a living other then being a lawyer.

Interviewer: In law school, did they use the case study method, or the Socratic method?

Burney: Uh.. well you were called on-- you- you were given-- before you- b- before you go to law school, th- f- the first day, you- you got to law school and your assignments are on the board. And you go to- you go to class prepared the- the first day of the semester. And they go over the law and then they call on you for-- they call out your name, you stand up, and you've had cases to read and a brief, and they ask you questions about those cases and what's your opinion and so on. This-- I think when I-- the class I was in-- I had to go to- I had to go to summer school two summers to make up- to catch up for the semester and uh.. the class I was in, I would say it started out with over a hundred in the class and around 70 graduated, and of those 70, about 40 passed the bar. We had-- the year I took it, it was, well it had about a 40% failure rate.

Interviewer: So would it be like 15 or 20 in a typical class?

Burney: Well there'd be 70, or 80, or 90.

Interviewer: Really?

Burney: Yeah.

Interviewer: In a big lecture hall type thing?

Burney: Yep. With just a tremendous-- you'd have the whole class in there. Until you-- that's your first year, and then when you get into, you know, your electives and so on, you get- you get smaller classes. But my classes had 70 and 80 people on them.

Interviewer: Interesting. Were there lots of veterans like you coming back at that point?

Burney: There was not a- not a lot like there was when- when my brother was there. Th- they had a f- a few. Of course with the-- I mean the-- I-- The draft was still in effect back then, and I had several worries that I was d- them-- that- that they took out of- out of law school and put them in the army.

Interviewer: Just gone, huh?

Burney: Yeah.

Interviewer: Any women started in by that point?

Burney: I had- I had three women in my class in law school.

Interviewer: That's 1957?

Burney: That was 1957.

Interviewer: And how long does law school last?

Burney: That's three years.

Interviewer: Three years, wow. Interesting. So the professors, who were some of the ones that you had?

Burney: All of my professors have just about departed now. The only one that living is Doctor Norman Wiggins, who is the uh.. President of Campbell, I had him.

Interviewer: Wow.

Burney: And he and I are still very close friends, and correspond occasionally. He taught me criminal law and corporations. We had Doctor Don Scarlet, who later became Dean of the law School. C- was Carol Weathers, he was the Dean of the law school, and on the course he- he taught legal ethics and wills. And then they had a "Phew", one that's called Doctor Robert E Lee.

Interviewer: That was his name, or you called him that?

Burney: His name was-- No, his name was Robert E Lee. His name was Ni-- they called him 'Nig'. He and my father were very, very close friends. And John had trouble with him when he was in law school, and when I started the la- to go to law school, John said "Louis, I'm going to tell you something, Nig Lee's going to bust your ass." My first semester in law school, I made a 63 under Nig Lee, that's a D. Law school, 60 to 65 a uh.. a D. 70-- 65 to 75 a C. I had a 74.8 average with what Nig Lee gave me. My second semester, he gave me a 65. Next semester it was 67. The next semester it was a 69. He raised me-- that doesn't just happen. He raised me two points a semester and my last semester he gave me a-- or I'll say, I earned a 78, which was- which was a B and that was the, me fine. But he came up to me and he said "Mr Burney," he said "After three years, you have finally become a law student." But uh..

Interviewer: But it doesn't sound like he gave too many other people very good grades either.

Burney: Well he- he didn't give them to me. After I came out of the army, I made two Ds. I made it-- I had taken Spanish-- I didn't think I was ever going to graduate from college on account of Spanish. I- I'd taken Spanish three a couple of times before I went into the army and when I came out of-- m- my first semester I took Spanish three for the third or fourth time. And I'll say, that professor gave me a D, I didn't earn it. And that D in Spanish and the D in law school was the- the only two Ds I made after I came out of the army. And I'd never made an A before I went in the army, but I- I made some after I came out.

Interviewer: Were you working for any attorneys, or any summer jobs?

Burney: No. I was- I had to go to summer school to make up for the semester I'd missed and I- I didn't. But-- and the only job offer I had when I finished my third year, Malcolm Sula who was the Attorney General of North Carolina, a very close friend of my father's, he offered me a job in the Attorney General's-- working on the staff of the Attorney General in Raleigh, and I came back, opened my own office by myself for three years.

Interviewer: Oh, you did?

Burney: Uh-huh.

Interviewer: That's very interesting.

Burney: And its not much fun practicing law, weren't no vacations, no-- being that you'd be here in your office everyday when you're by yourself.

Interviewer: Didn't even have a secretary?

Burney: I had-- I- I could type and I would stay out there at night, most of the stuff I did, but I- I hadn't ___________, maybe a month or so, I contacted Ms Cramorly, I believe, the- the in high- the t- typing school in high school and asked her if she had a girl there that she thought could handle my work and she sent up a- a high school girl who would come in, in the afternoon and do my typing.

Interviewer: (Coughing).

Burney: And she was very efficient.

Interviewer: What kind of cases did you take?

Burney: Well I could tell you uhm.. I lived off of domestic relation cases. You know, lawyers just didn't really like domestic. They didn't pay much then. And your hearing were on a Saturday morning.

Interviewer: Really?

Burney: And the Superior Court Judge, your resident Superior Court Judge heard all the domestic cases. And he heard them on Saturday mornings. And I was-- Judge Rudolph Menz was the judge, and he finally-- he said "I am tired of you taking every one of my weekends." 'Cause I was- I was taking- I did an awful lot of domestic work until-- John and I practiced by myself. Well, I practiced alone for three years, and then John and I formed a partnership. He was- he was District Attorney when I started and he didn't show any mercy on me.

Interviewer: (Laughter).

Burney: I had- I did right-- m- much criminal work too. I used to do mostly domestic and criminal work.

Interviewer: And domestic, for the listeners, tell us what that, what would be a typical domestic case?

Burney: Mostly the child custody cases and support. They want me to ask them for support, that was mainly.

Interviewer: Divorce is different than domestic?

Burney: That's right.

Interviewer: That is domestic?

Burney: That's-- no, well, not the kind-- not what I'm speaking of. In the d- divorces back then, you had to be separated two years before you could get it. Before you could uh.. apply for a divorce.

Interviewer: Two years.

Burney: You had to be separated two years.

Interviewer: And then you had to prove somebody was at fault?

Burney: No, you just flat-- no, just- just a two year separation, you- you're eligible for your divorce.

Interviewer: So you were doing just...?

Burney: But it was mostly child custody and...

Interviewer: Just like today then, we still have all those...

Burney: Except they got two or three judges. And there's fulltime court on that now.

Interviewer: So did this judge do other cases during the week?

Burney: Yeah. He- he-- Yes. He was the Superior Court Judge trying criminal and civil cases all- all over Eastern North Carolina. And he would come home on Friday- Friday afternoon and have to go to hear domestic cases on Saturday mornings. All day Saturday if they took all day.

Interviewer: Was he mad at you about that?

Burney: He wasn't happy with the fact-- there was another particular lawyer named Bill Smith, and he had a, I don't know why, but it seemed like everything that I would get, Bill Smith would be the- be on the other side. He finally called us up there that one time, and he said-- he told him, he said uh.. "I am tired of you two-- me coming home every weekend, and you two uh.. taking all- taking my Saturdays every uh.." And Bill Smith uh.. he had more guts then I did, he said "Judge, I can tell you one thing, you're not telling me what type the damn case is I'm going to take." He said "I'm practicing the kind of law I want, and you're not telling me." He- he'd told us he wanted us to cut out taking domestic cases, is what he was essentially saying.

Interviewer: Well, who was going to take them? Somebody had to take them.

Burney: That's right. Somebody would have been there, but (laughter) But I remember another, I was in the Kiwanis but, th- the other case Bill Smith and I was in on together. I was at the Kiwanis ___________ man, black face, you know, so well uhm.. about half way through, there's was a deputy sheriff came up from behind the curtain and handed me a note and told me that Judge Grinch wanted me as- as soon as the Muster was over, for me to come to uh.. the courthouse. I was representing the-- a man, his wife was suing him for alimony and support, child custody and ch- child support, and Judge Menz was in Goldsboro holding court, and Bill Smith brought some kind of thing to be heard that day. And he drove in from Goldsboro that night and we-- after I'd got through with the Kiwanis Muster, we went to the court house and started trying that case and tried it to two or three o'clock in the morning. And I wasn't, you know, I- I didn't even know it was coming up. I was completely unprepared. They had my client there and... I'll never forget that one.

Interviewer: One thing we kind of skipped over and I wanted to just ask you a little bit about, your bar exam, was it a written exam?

Burney: It was a written exam. It was uh.. three days. Your first question they ask you is always of legal ethics. You know what the first one's going to be. And then the-- you've got, oh I reckon eight or ten questions in the morning and eight or ten in the afternoon with-- for three days. And I felt like I was prepared to-- I thought I was really prepared to take the bar exam except for taxation. I would finish a question and I would, truthfully, I'd say "God, please don't let the next question be taxation."

Interviewer: (Laugher).

Burney: Well the Lord stuck with me 'til the last afternoon, and it was "Bam, bam, bam, bam." Taxation.

Interviewer: Taxation time.

Burney: I thought I was prepared, but I- I thought my education at Wake Forest and-- had well prepared me to take the bar.

Interviewer: Did you have a bar review course?

Burney: It had a bar review course and I started- I started taking that, and (sighs) just about everybody in law school did and I saw that my habits were not-- I wasn't really applying myself the way I should. I'd get up and play tennis in the morning and- and so after about a week and a half of it, I- I went back to my room, told my roommate "I'm going home and study." So I packed up everything I had in my car, and I came home and sat in a room right by myself 16, 18 hours a day studying.

Interviewer: Well it worked, you passed.

Burney: I passed it.

Interviewer: That's right. And they can't take it away unless you do something really bad.

Burney: Really, really bad. Thank god you don't have to take it every year.

Interviewer: Right.

Burney: Or (inaudible).

Interviewer: But you've had to take a lot of courses since then, right?

Burney: That's (inaudible). We have to have 12 hours a- a year. B- continuing legal education. But in my class, I think the bottom 15 people failed except for the number two from the- the number two from the bottom was a guy that (chuckles) he passed and the next 15 next to him-- and I'm talking about grade-wise. And uh.. and I think everybody in my class, some of them passed the next year, and some of them passed-- today I think everybody, but maybe three or four never passed the bar. What-- I had a roommate that I roomed with in law school, he never passed the bar. He had been to law school, in fact he was in law school with John, and flunked out. And uh.. he went back in and I... he and I were-- I had known him when-- from my earlier days at Wake Forest and uh.. he never passed the bar.

Interviewer: Can you tell us a little bit about the local bar here and the members? We talked a little bit about women, were there any members of the local bar that were female?

Burney: When I started practicing law, I think there was 60 lawyers. There's probably over 400 licensed and knew- in New Hanover County, and that's counting the judges, district attorneys, and the industries that have lawyers and l- legal aid and so on. And I looked in the phone book the other day and or- or something came out, a- and I- I know just about 30% of the lawyers in New Hanover County, where at one time, I knew 100%.

Interviewer: Right.

Burney: Uhm..

Interviewer: 60. That would be in about 1960?

Burney: That was in 1959.

Interviewer: Yeah. So then just 60.

Burney: I was the only lawyer that came that-- the only lawyer to come to Wilmington that year.

Interviewer: Interesting.

Burney: Pauly Barefoot was the only lawyer to come the year before that, and I think George Clarke was the only lawyer to come to Wilmington the year before that. And the year after I came, no lawyers came.

Interviewer: Interesting.

Burney: So I think we had four years, you had three lawyers come to Wilmington. And now you'll have, what, 30 or 40 a year. That was- what the...

Interviewer: About were there women members of the bar then?

Burney: The only-- there was not a- a female or a lady practicing law when I started. Margaret Thornball, she- she was a lawyer and she uh.. Johnny Walker, who was the District Attorney, a solicitor, hired her as a- and assistant prosecutor. And she came in as a-- and uh.. prosecuted and then she opened her own law practice after- after that. She and her husband had separated, and uh.. she became a lawyer and she was the-- but none other-- there were no other lawyers in Wilmington-- no- no female lawyers.

Interviewer: How about any quack lawyers?

Burney: Had a lawyer named Robert Bond, who was...

Interviewer: Is he still alive?

Burney: No, Robert's dead. He was the-- he was the first graduate from the North Carolina Central Law School.

Interviewer: Great.

Burney: I remember B and B, I think B was in the first class that graduated that, and he received the first diploma there. And he- he was the- he was the only black lawyer. They had two black policemen.

Interviewer: Different time, huh?

Burney: None on the fire department.

Interviewer: And yet, you must have had black clients?

Burney: Many- many of them.

Interviewer: I mean, because if there's only 60 lawyers and there's only one black, they have the same needs as anybody else, right?

Burney: They sure do. I had many black clients, and loved a lot of them and a lot of them loved me.

Interviewer: As you practiced, did your practice change? Did you take on different types of cases?

Burney: Well, I'll tell you, I principally started out, as I stated, doing domestic work and criminal work. My brother John and I formed a partnership outside uh.. practiced three years alone. And he and I took just 'bout- just-- John was principally criminal, and I d- did a lot of the civil work. I started doing some estate work during that time. And then John and I, John ran for the State Senate I reckon in 1968, he was elected. And my practice turned then nearly 100%- 100% criminal law 'cause I had what John was in Raleigh and couldn't take what he had, and I- I don't think there was a day he was in Raleigh that I didn't go to court to try some type of- of criminal case. And a lot of times, I'd be over there to well after dark. Of course it lasted a l- it lasted a lot longer back then, then they- then they do now. Then, John and I h- took in a lawyer, George Perry, and later on, we- we took in David Barefoot. And at one time, we had five lawyers in our law firm and we were the largest law firm in Wilmington. Wilmington just- just did not have large law firms at that time. Just- you have a partnership just two or three, but we- we had five lawyers, and we were the largest law firm in Wilmington.

Interviewer: Did you have paralegals with that? And secretaries?

Burney: We had- we had you-- Right, but- but I- I stayed with the criminal law until uh.. John got out of the legislature and George Perry came with us. And then I got heavy in personal injury work. I'd say that 70, 80- 80% of th- the work that I did was personal injury work and that- that...

Interviewer: Tell us, what do you mean by that term "personal injury work?"

Burney: Obviously people that were h- injured. Mostly, I would say automobile accidents.

Interviewer: Automobile accidents.

Burney: Automobile accidents. And I had a splendid personal injury-- I'd have 35 or 40 cases g- going all the time.

Interviewer: Wow.

Burney: And it- it's- its good money in personal injury work. And then...

Interviewer: If you win.

Burney: Then the billboard lawyers in 19-- let's see, I was 44 years old when they ruled that lawyers could advertise, and their advertising was very effective and you could see our personal injury practice dwindling, dwindling, dwindling because of- because of the advertising. And when it got nearly gone away, I- I became real heavy in estate work. Not estate planning, but...

Interviewer: Did you consider advertising yourself?

Burney: We never- we never advertised- never spent one penny in advertisements.

Interviewer: So you didn't want to do that?

Burney: Never. We- we'd made up our minds that we would never advertise. That we would make it on our names rather then...

Interviewer: So you're saying that these people who advertised heavily, since the person who had the injury didn't know, they just started going with...

Burney: They- they built- you- you- you run an ad and you'll get 12 or 15 of those lawyers. If you get a ticket or even it you d- if they-- they get copies of the accident reports to see if anyone was hurt, and they'll to the people who were hurt and they-- it's just- it's just been very effective for them, the people who do that type of work.

Interviewer: How did you feel about that?

Burney: I- I have no use for what we refer to in the legal profession as billboard lawyers. I- I don't have a lot of respect for them. I think a lawyer ought to make it on his- on his ability, not what he puts on a billboard. But it's very-- th- they mail CDs, th- they- the whole works now when you- when you're hurt in an accident.

Interviewer: So you just started to go from accidents to estates?

Burney: I went from- from personal injuries to estates and that's- and I've had a very, very good estate planning. In fact, I had a uhm.. insurance broker up from Myrtle Beach came up here, and he wanted to, me t- to enter into some agreement with me, he said "I've- I've gone through the estate records in New Hanover County," he said "You handled the s- second most-- you-- there's only o- other law firm that handles more estates then you do, Deese Sucker, and I was the only one in my firm did it, and this other law firm that do it, they've got several in their law firm that was doing them. And I-- but John and I partially retired, oh God, I reckon five years ago we announced our retirement. But we're still- still down there, and I'm still doing estate work and they're still coming in.

Interviewer: And what would be an estate work?

Burney: After a person dies, handling the es- han- probating the will, or qualifying the administrator if there was not a will. And uh..

Interviewer: You become the trustee of some of those?

Burney: No, nothing like that.

Interviewer: No, you're not a trustee?

Burney: No you- you're representing the executor, the person who's handling the estate now. A- but- what- one occasion, I drew the will naming John as executor to the lady's estate and when she died, we couldn't find any kin people, and when we did find them, they was scattered. I mean all over the world. And as you-- you go- going in to somebody who got all their personal, their clothing and this and that, and you- you've got to get rid of all that, and of course, John was the executor but he signed the papers and I did all the work. I made up my mind then, never again as long as I live will I name myself as executor, or name John as executor of an estate. And I never have, except for my mothers. But you, principally you h- handle the, y- you know, get- get the uh.. when you probate a will, or you qualify the administrator if it is without a will, get all the information that's in the estate, f- fill in these forms. Th- then if it's over a certain amount, you have to file inheritance estate tax returns. File inventories, run your ads in the paper, make sure...

Interviewer: But who hires you though?

Burney: The- the executor. The person who's handling the estate.

Interviewer: So the family member who is perhaps named...

Burney: Th- they'll be named in the will.

Interviewer: Needs to have a lawyer right?

Burney: You can do-- a lot of times, you put in the will, and I've done it several, not many times, at our request. Th- the executor can hire anyone they want to, but I-- I put in the will "I request that my executor retain the firm of (audio glitch)to- as the attorneys for my estate." But they're not bound by that.

Interviewer: Did you find that it was many times people that you had known in life, who ended up that you were helping, or were they strangers?

Burney: I knew many, many of them. Mostly they were, of course-- most of the estates that I handled, I'd drawn the will. Usually if- if draw a will and you-- the executor that knew, he goes back to the person who drew the will. And I, gosh you know, I couldn't imagine the wills I've drawn. I- I'd say two or three thousand wills. And those- and those wills are (laughs) beginning to mature now.

Interviewer: Were you practicing law most every day then?

Burney: I got to my office about 8:30 just nearly every morning and I stay 'til 11:30 or a quarter to 12. Then I go to the YMCA and work out, and then I go home. And I usually bring a file with me, do estate work- work at home.

Interviewer: So a lawyer never quits?

Burney: Well...

Interviewer: They can if they want, but they don't have to, huh?

Burney: I just don't want to stay home all (laughs) day. But I've enjoyed it. I-- and I enjoy doing estate work, I really do. It's a lot- a lot of math in it.

Interviewer: And you're helping people. I think that even though you...

Burney: I never- I've-- Lord, I've handled hundreds of estates and I've never had a falling out with a single person on an estate that I've handled. Never had a dispute, not on the first one.

Interviewer: That's good. Do you want to tell us anything about the bar as far as civility and dealing with other attorneys? You've mentioned it a little bit, but is this a good bar to work with? Sounds like you knew virtually everybody in the bar.

Burney: Well it used to that you knew everybody and you get over (inaudible) and a complaint, that's when a lawsuits filed. Used to be you could call up an attorney and say "This is Louis Burney, I-- so and so has come in and retained me. Uh.. I might have my answer in, in 30 days, but it- I'll appreciate it if you'll give me an extension of time if I need it." And they'll say "Sure, take wh- whatever time you need." You don't abuse it. But brother, I'm telling you now, if you're going to do that, you'd better get it in writing that you've got an extension, or either go over and get a court order (inaudible). And you'd call up somebody's lawyer, or the other DC, if he call-- I called a lawyer and asked him if he'd give me some extra time to file my answer and he said "No." It's an entirely different bar then it was when I started.

Interviewer: Some of that aside...

Burney: We use- we used to get together, you know, we'd have lunch together and after work, go- go to the court rooms and see all the lawyers together in the back of the court room while the case was being tried and sit and talk and it's just-- the judges would come by your office and call on you, come to see you and just-- I'd die if a judge walked in my office now just to come in- just- just to say "Hello." I think "Oh god, what have I done wrong?"

Interviewer: (Laughter).

Burney: I saw a judge come in this-- it's just that I've been at it for a little over 40 years and it's just...

Interviewer: Different.

Burney: It's not enjoyable like the way it was.

Interviewer: We're back, if you can reintroduce us here for this. We are interviewing Louis Burney and he's being interviewed by Sherman Hayes and Mike Haas. As you were coming up as lawyer, we're always aware that the civic groups and organizations always look to lawyers to try to help them and be involved, what are some of the charitable things over the years that you've done and enjoyed?

Burney: Well I have the bylaws and amended bylaws that I've done for the YMCA and Cape Fear Academy and formed rescue squads, formed several churches, helped the church in bankruptcy. Uh.. th- the American Legion. The people at charities don't mind giving you a ring to see if you will help them. I don't mean charities, I mean the civic organizations.

Interviewer: The civic, yeah.

Burney: They don't mind asking you for your help.

Interviewer: (Coughing) Did you have any other individual hobbies that you were involved in yourself, independent of the lawyers?

Burney: Well, are you talking about hunting and fishing?

Interviewer: Right.

Burney: I've- I love hunting and I love fishing and they're- they're probably my two main hobbies. I'm out hunting most every chance I get and I go fishing when someone ask me. I don't have-- I had a boat for a good while, but uh.. I love both hunting and fishing.

Interviewer: Any particular type of hunting?

Burney: Deer hunting, dove hunting and duck hunting are the (inaudible) principal three types of game that I hunt. And the- the ducks are gone, but the deer are plentiful.

Interviewer: Is that right?

Burney: And the doves are about, maybe not quite as many, they're about the s- they're close to the same. Plenty of-- and the fishing, you can-- the fish are not out there the way they were when-- at one time. The blue fish and the Spanish mackerel and...

Interviewer: So you can really see the difference...

Burney: You can-- oh yes, you can tell...

Interviewer: ...in the stockpiles?

Burney: And there's net- there's so much net fishing off the beach here now. People fishing with nets and catching them has- has had a- a big influence on it.

Interviewer: Interesting.

Burney: But they're-- as far as my hobbies, that's the- that's-- Obviously they don't-- they're about the only recreational things that I do, you know, for enjoyment. My brother and I have a place up in Pender County, that what we ha-- We have what you call a camp up there. And he and I own it together, and I spend-- I go up there quite frequently.

Interviewer: With all the development going on, is there pressure to even develop up in the area?

Burney: Well we- we own 35 acres, and then he owns several hundred acres almost surrounding it. And there's- there's no development right where we are, but we're on a b- what you call a highly sheltered creek. It's a branch of the North East River. But the boats have just ruined the banks. The speed bo- people going up there skiing, jet skiing and some along there have just washed the banks out on it. In front of our place, it's just really a bad erosion, because of the boats. But they've passed a law now and these jet skis, I don't think they can go within a h- hundred feet of the shoreline which keeps them from using highly sheltered creek all together, 'cause it's- it's not 200 feet wide.

Interviewer: We had mentioned before taping that you have some grandchildren coming, so I take it that besides hobbies, there's a family that came along?

Burney: (Inaudible) and I didn't think I could ever love anything in my life the way I love those two children. I- my- I have a daughter. I have two children. My daughters-- my son is Louis Burney Junior, he's a, well they call them a- I call them a stockbroker, but he's a financial advisor now. He was Stiff- Smith Burney, and he married this past March after going with a young lady for eight years. He decided to get married, and they're expecting their first child in January. They didn't get married until March. And then I have a daughter, Gina, who's married to Zan Smith, who is from Wilmington. Uh.. but he was a- he went to Salem. He went to Wake Forest, and that's really where they-- the fact they were both from Wilmington didn't have anything-- they didn't meet here, they met away, and uh.. she has twins two mo- 22 months old, a boy and a girl.

Interviewer: And your wife's name?

Burney: My wife is Bonnie uh.. Bonnie Ross Burney, Bonnie Jean Ross. She is from Happisburgh, North Carolina, which is in Bladen County. Her daddy was also a farmer, principally tobacco. And Bonnie is about-- raised about eight miles from where my father was from in Bladen County.

Interviewer: That's interesting.

Burney: She uh.. she went to East Carolina University and she came here as a schoolteacher in about 9- 1963, I believe. She'll cor- she's listening to everything I'm saying, she'll correct me if I'm (laughs). She came here as a school teacher, and I met her-- she came here in September, and I met her in September, and we got engaged before September was over, and we were married in February.

Interviewer: That's great. Now one of the questions we really like to ask every lawyer that we're talking to, is if someone came up to you today, a young person, and said "I'm really interested in law," would you encourage them, could you discourage them? What kinds of things would you tell them about?

Burney: Well, I- I would tell them if they're in- still in undergraduate school "You need to know how to type." And I think nearly everybody that goes to school now d- since we're in the computer age, knows how to type. I'd tell them to take the course "The Principals of Accounting." And I would tell them to take "Human Anatomy," 'cause going back to personal injury, of people being hurt, it- it would have been a great, great help to me had I known that parts of the human body when these doctors write their reports and I had to go and get a medical dictionary and sit down and write out everything that they're talking about with hu- human anatomy. If- if they were- they were the three courses that I would recommend that a person going to law school. Uh.. lawyers, if they are getting in it to get rich, I don't think-- they're probably choosing the wrong field now. Lawyers are making money now where they- where they didn't at one time. I mean, you don't hear of many lawyers retiring. But uh.. it's a good life. I wouldn't advise one if you (chuckle) go while the going is on. Every statistic shows that a partnership earns more money then a s- s uh.. single practitioner.

Interviewer: So that's something that's really shifted in the time. When you came, you said there were lots of people on their own as late as the mid 60s. Do people still come in on their own quite regularly?

Burney: The- the-- no. The- there's a few lawyers here that's on their own.

Interviewer: No, but I'm saying that when you came out of school, that was more common, that you would be on your own?

Burney: W- well now n- not-- there were- there were s-- yes. Much more so then now. But where I had the advantage, my father had been a Superior Court Judge here and all these old lawyers, they're- they're all gone now. But all of them- all of them tried to help me. They did everything- they'd associate me in cases with them and send me domestic stuff. That's w- that's where you get it. You-- lawyer, I- I would say 80% of you-- there's not many people just walk in the office off the street. They- they've been referred to you by someone, or they know your reputation.

Interviewer: So the pattern now is most people come into a partnership right away?

Burney: Most of them, they're hi-- they've- they've come as an associate in a partnership. And I know some law firms they have- they work the-- these boys are working 70 and 80 hours a week with these law firms. And you've got to pay- you've got to pay them a decent salary, because you know, if- if somebody working for you and they're worried about paying their bills, they're not doing you a good job in your office. You got- you got to pay them a good living so that they've got piece of mind while they're- while they're doing your work.

Interviewer: But you would recommend that if the person was really interested, you still think law is...

Burney: (Inaudible) I sure would. But they're not going to- they're not going to enjoy it the way I did. It's just a different profession now then it was 40 years ago when I started.

Interviewer: All right.

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