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Interview with Heyward C. Bellamy, April 27, 2005 | UNCW Archives and Special Collections Online Database

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Title:
Interview with Heyward C. Bellamy, April 27, 2005
Date:
April 27, 2005
Description:
This is the 4th interview with Dr. Heyward Bellamy, former Superintendant of New Hanover County Public schools who led the system through the Federally mandated desegregation in the late 1960s and 70s. His recall of events helps clear common misconceptions regarding specific incidents. He also discusses the calm after the storm and its lasting effects on today's schools.
Phys. Desc:

Interviewee: Bellamy, Heyward C. Interviewer: Mims, LuAnn / Osinski, John Date of Interview: 27 April 2005 Series: Southeast North Carolina (SENC) Length 60 minutes

Mims: Today is April the 27th, 2005. I am LuAnn Mims with John Osinski for the Randall Library Special Collections and we're continuing to speak with Dr. Heyward Bellamy in our Notables of Wilmington North Carolina. Dr. Bellamy, when we left off, we were discussing off camera a little bit about the public library and the high school libraries. Could you pick up on that?

Bellamy: Yes I will. The...and the reason I brought this up...the whole business of desegregation during that period, the community had to deal with the unknown, and the unknown is scare-some to people until they find out that things are going to be alright if changes are made. Because we had before the desegregation which finally was completed in nineteen seventy one, we were dealing with either a totally segregated dual school system or beginning in nineteen sixty two a...a gradual move to desegregation involving the North Carolina Pupil Assignment Plan, the Pearsall plan of freedom of choice, limited district lines, the closing of Williston, and so on.

But the...the desegregation was complete with the order that was put into effect in 1971. And since that time I have been talking to...to people...have uncovered as I've talked with them, things that I don't think were...were fully understood. And it's easy to...to really get upset about something if it appears to be a prejudice move against blacks or whites in this process. And one of them is the...the story of the books. New Hanover County had...so far as I can determine, the first "free" textbooks in North Carolina. That is the books were bought out of local tax funds. This was gradually changed.

I can't remember the year...it was in the late '50s, I think, when the state finally began to supply the state purchased books for all students. But during the depression and partially, at least, well into the fifties, the county would buy the books because frankly, in the depression, most of us couldn't afford to buy books. And the board of education understood that and they finally just said let's put the books in the tax bill and have free textbooks which sort of set the pattern for North Carolina. But in doing that, we had to make good use of those books. I can remember as a student at Cornelius Harnett and Hemenway, and at New Hanover, really wearing the cover off those books.

And they were...would get pretty dirty and...E. L. White...I think I mentioned to you, would give us book covers to go on them. So we'd cover them up and protect them as best we could during the year, and turn them in because it was a real blessing to the families that they didn't have to purchase those books. I had witnessed that as a little boy in Horry County South Carolina when I was in the first through the fourth grades. And it was just a real trial every year until the books could finally be bought by the families. But I...I've heard people say that the used dirty books were...were somehow a racial thing...that they were just found in the black schools, and that's...that's incorrect. I can tell you as a student who used the books, and I understood why and I was so grateful to have even a dirty speller that my friends and neighbors through the tax arrangement paid for those books.

But that misunderstanding prevails with some people to this day. I read in last week's paper that somebody from another system, I think, had felt the same way. That...that they were being given the...the older dirtier books. We all had older and dirtier books until we could afford to replace them. I remember the...the year the state finally took over the complete provision of books. We kept our county textbook budget intact but it was about thirty thousand dollars and that was a lot of money for the county in the depression but think about it today, that wouldn't buy very many books.

So when we could buy them, they had to be used until we really couldn't use them anymore before they were discarded or some more were bought. And in some cases the books were bought in sets. Magruder's Government, for instance. And Magruder would put out a different edition ever so often to keep up with the changing laws and the books would...the...our book lady, Martha Bennett, would try to keep the editions together. And I think that probably caused some feeling, if you'd find names in the book that weren't...

Mims: Well, I think before you talked about the distribution of the books. That they were collected at the end of the year, and then, like, centrally located and redistributed depending on the number of students...

Bellamy: They were inventoried at the end of the year but they were kept, except for replacements or discards, and so on, were kept in the schools. I know that first hand too, because that was my summer job in the early days when I was teaching. C. G. Berry and I, who was a local delightful character, who was our audiovisual man, he and I would inventory the books. And we would...we would discard...in the early days, only when we just could not...felt that it...the book could not be used.

But the...keeping the editions together with discards that would occur within a given edition would mean that the books would be shuffled and its unfortunate that that led to...to a misunderstanding. Because the county was trying to get a book in everybody's hand without immediate cost to the family. And other misunderstanding I didn't discover until not too long ago...when Wilmington College was put in...in place of the University Center, which had been established at New Hanover High and Williston and later the old Isaac Bear Building. The gym, of which still stands...the coaches have refurbished it...the board of education asked that we, within the schools, slack off just as much as possible on the use of the public library and give the college students priority in using the library books in the public library.

I remember when the request came. So we backed away from that and I think that was interpreted as aimed at Williston...which it was not, because I remember the...the request when I was teaching at New Hanover High School, and later. And of course, we already had our collections in the schools that had been built up over the years and the college had to have a little running time to...to select and purchase the collection for the college. And that's what that was about. I remember it very well. And as soon as they could, of course, that was retracted. But it's unfortunate that...that there's not more communication at the time, is my point.

Mims: Um hum.

Bellamy: And that lead, over the years, to some hard feelings, which...very unfortunate...because we...we have, in my experience, always had a...a county that tried to do what it could for its citizens. We weren't always as affluent as we find right now with the boom that's going on. Money came hard, but even in those days, in nineteen thirty six, in the middle of the depression; the people got out and campaigned for, including the students marching downtown to campaign for a supplement to add the extra year in the schools, to get the schools accredited, to increase the pay of teachers, it was an allowable twenty cents.

They wouldn't always levy all of that, but they could have levied under that supplementary budget up to twenty cents on the hundred to do that...which I think was pretty remarkable thing for any community to accomplish in the middle of a depression.

Mims: Well, in the time of desegregation...we've talked already about how high emotions ran, and I think that may have masked a lot of the opportunities to provide answers in a logical fashion. When did things start calming down where the information that, you know, you were creating here, you know, this plan, when did it start, you know, really start sinking in to people that it was going to work?

Bellamy: Well they started calming down depending on the...on the particular issue. At various times in the...in the history of the entire desegregation period...one of the most dramatic things that calmed things down was the morning after the sheriff's department delivered the restraining order to about forty people, I guess, to cease and desist and to not go near a school. They calmed down because there really was a lot of help from the...we call it today, the silent majority.

But I met with the parents out at Hoggard school one Sunday afternoon when we were having some pretty bad times and...to bring them up to date. And they said "What do you want us to do?" And that began the school community systems program. I might have mentioned to you earlier they even had their own bumper stickers, a tremendous help from volunteers in the schools. Emsley Laney and I...he was at that time the board chairman...met with the Chamber of Commerce on the morning before the...the implementation of the court order. And they said, "What can we do?" I said, "Well if anything you can do to help us get out the word that this is going to be the plan and to...to ask for calm, will be appreciated."

So he and I left the meeting and in a day or two on the TV at various spots during the day, community figures began to appear. I can remember seeing, among others, our own school board attorney and others who would do a spot and say, "These are our schools. These are our children. On this morning, school is going to start and we urge all of you to...to do everything you can to see that this is a peaceful orderly school year." And it really helped.

I can never thank the Chamber of Commerce enough for that help, it had a telling effect. So from the...the parents...you see, most people wanted things to work and didn't want people causing great difficulty. They didn't want that. Most parents and the overwhelming number of students, I'm convinced, really wanted to be left alone to pursue their education. And gradually this began to...to unfold. We had rough spots of course, even among a few of the school people who were...were, I felt, not too sympathetic with the move, but...

Mims: School people by people on the board or faculty?

Bellamy: Well, the board- the board. I wanted to get into that topic...

Mims: Yea.

Bellamy: Few faculty...very few, but when there's one fish floating against the tide when you're trying to get something done, it can cause ripples that you have to try to deal with. I...during the period...had to make a number of pretty serious quick drastic moves in personnel that didn't endear me to lots of people either. This...this all accumulated. I told board chairman, John Coddington, who followed Emsley Laney, one morning when we were discussing something, I said, "Well I feel like sometimes I've made everybody in the county mad at least once, and I'm on the was around with the second time."

But the people by and large supported their schools and they wanted schools to get on with getting the job done. We've desegregated; now let's make certain we've got adequate schools and teacher pay, organization within the schools that's the best we could have, and so on. And of course after the court order, that's what we began to try to concentrate on. I...I was by training, an instructional person. I was never directly trained to be a school superintendent as far as going up and majoring in administration and finance and all of that.

I picked all that up either by brute force and will power or taking courses later as I got into the...the business of managing a large school system. It's pretty difficult for the family along the way. My two older children are...just in recent years begun to tell me some of the things that they tolerated during those years. And they wouldn't bother me with it because they thought I had a plateful, so they just didn't. For one semester we had to, on the insistence of the police, move our...our daughter, Mary Louise, to Bartle Hall.

And they were so helpful. I have a soft spot in my heart for that place because they welcomed her right in and she spent that time there, even went to the Governor's School after her stay at Bartle, and of course, came on home to...things had calmed down, and went back to her...her school. But that was a bitter pill to swallow to have to...to move your own child when you're running the school system. But the police felt it was very essential...whatever they knew that I didn't.

Mims: It seems like that the parents of these kids would realize that you maintained your children within this public school system. You did not take them out and put them in a private situation. Your kids were experiencing the very same thing that all these other kids were. And I think that spoke a lot and it's unfortunate that, you know, it didn't reflect on these gestures made towards your children. But I know in retrospect people probably really appreciated that.

Bellamy: Yea, by the time the third one came along, my son Frank, he...everybody would remark how nice it was to see at least one Bellamy able to really enjoy the school day. And he enjoyed every minute of it. Had to move him around quite a bit and I remember when he...he had to move to Sunset for some junior high work when we moved down here to the old house, his...his reaction was "Oh boy, when I get to Hoggard, I'm gonna know everybody there!"

And I think he almost did. And he had...had a great time for the stay and it was...teachers would remark to me that this was good to see that we had reached that time. But it took the efforts of lots of people. The volunteers, the school board, the commissioners, except with an incident or two I've pointed out were very helpful within our bounds.

We didn't have the money available that has come to us since. I'm not begrudging that to be sure, I want the schools to have everything they want and need to...to bring the program to our folks. But with what we had to work with, I think the county, the school board, and the commissioners did a very fine job of providing for the children.

Osinski: Excuse me, Dr. Bellamy; I was wondering if I could ask, did your children give you any specific examples of what they had to endure during this time?

Bellamy: Language, threats, that kind of thing that they would...would see...

Osinski: From the other students?

Bellamy: ...students, picking on them because they were whatever...I don't know but it...

Mrs. Bellamy: You might want to mention the black history block and that our son...

Mims: When Cliff took the Black History course?

Bellamy: Yes, that's on the tape, I think.

Mims: I think we talked about it on another tape.

Bellamy: Yes, oh yea.

Mims: You were gonna start talking about the school board. You...you said you had some notes you wanted to talk about the school board?

Bellamy: Yes I do.

Mims: Okay.

Bellamy: Up until the time we're talking about, I fortunately was blessed with a wonderful school board...had a bank president, a surgeon, an insurance executive, a science institution worker in Vic Taylor, a lawyer; people like that who were pretty busy folks. But they'd get together when I called and said I had to have 'em within about thirty minutes...they'd be there.

And it was a...and they didn't get much money for it. That was not their reason for being on the school board. They ran for the school board because they felt responsible citizens with the backgrounds that they had needed to serve and to give that...that service to the community. It was, I'm sure, a costly thing for them in terms of the time lost, but I never heard a complaint about that from any of them.

They were there and you felt that when they showed up you had their undivided attention and time to...to work on the problem at hand. This began to change because there were folks who did not agree with what was happening and folks who certainly did not agree with some of the things I had done as superintendent, so the nature of the board began to change. One of the...the first dramatic changes was a lady named Vera Shands who was just a...a very outspoken, very upset lady. Her children were in Harrell Academy, which I think is still in business.

And Vera, when she reported to the school board, didn't have a lot to say to me until she attended a number of meetings. But she was a very smart lady and she came to the meetings and listened intently, took notes, began to ask questions and one day she came to my office, middle of the day, said, and "Want to talk to you." And she came in and pulled up her chair and she said, "We've got to talk."

She said, "I want you to know it makes a big difference when you come down here and put your feet under the table and find out what is going on and what needs to be done. There's a big difference in that and being on the sidelines getting partial information and hearing folks complain and so on." And she turned out to be an excellent board member, very supportive, was always Johnny-on-the-spot.

There were others who didn't, I think, from my point of view at any rate, really get on the team as far as the kinds of people I had been used to. I mentioned Laney, Coddington, McIver, George Clark, mentioned Victor Taylor, and Alice Strickland; I think I've talked about. Carl Unsicker was a late arrival, he was an orthopedist here. He practices in Alaska now, he moved his family there.

Mims: Really?

Bellamy: And Mary Elizabeth Hood who was a retired school teacher for one term, Jerry Partrick who was a, I guess he'd retired now, local dentist and a Wilmington native. Dorothy Johnson...Dorothy, as I saw it, played some politics on the board. Sometimes she was very supportive but sometimes she would get very angry with me. We'd have some...some interesting discussions about when the entire issue is going to be settled in the south and in New Hanover County.

And you ask me when it leveled off...I finally told Dorothy one time, I said, "You know, I think there are folks around who simply don't agree with desegregation. And I think New Hanover County and the south will have to move along with it and understand that, and three or four generations hence, hopefully, the majority of people will have seen that the...the appropriate thing to do is to have public institutions, schools, open and available to all our citizens. No first class or second class about it."

And she...sometimes I thought...felt I might be wrong in that. I think I might have been right, based on what I've seen then and since. But I think things are gradually getting better but I do want to raise a little caution flag because Mary's college roommate said, oh a year or so ago when she came to see us...I think the paper had interviewed me, and she said, "Why do they want to talk about all of that? It happened so long ago." I said, "For the very reason whoever among the wise men said if you don't carefully learn your history, you might be doomed to repeat it."

Mims: Um hum.

Bellamy: ...and that we do need to talk about those days and the issues and the problems because in doing so, possibly we can avoid any problem that might come up in this regard. Hopefully we're past that and I look forward to the time when we're not going to...to make such a great issue of our ethnic backgrounds. I want all of us to be North Carolinians, Americans, to be sure we can be proud of our...our past, which I am, I...I've got Huguenots, Germans, Normans, Englishmen, all in my past.

My folks fought the revolution. They fought in great numbers in the civil war. They owned slaves. They, after the war, came home and became good citizens and in spite of the depression that awaited them when the came home, they made the most of it and in three or four generations, began to dig out of it. And I'm...I'm very proud of that past. But I don't want to...to dwell on that as...as a controlling influence in my life.

I'm first of all North Carolinian and an American and I want to see the time come when...when black, white, the Orientals, wherever, who are citizens of this country, look on themselves as Americans first. And I think we're getting there, I really think we're moving there. It's a...sometimes it seems to be a little slow, but I...I think we're on the way to doing that.

Mims: When did you start decreasing your position as superintendent?

Bellamy: Start what?

Mims: When did you start thinking about not being superintendent anymore?

Bellamy: Well, that was the next thing I was going to mention. The...I had some folks elected to the board, Harold Latimer, who was a local insurance man, bond salesman, Gloria Willis, a...a...don't know what Gloria did, I think she and her husband ran, when she was on the board, a restaurant. Lucille Schaeffer, a newcomer, Harold Hulon, who was a college teacher, Marjorie Smith McGivern, who...Marjorie taught for me one time out at Trask. I don't think she lives here anymore.

Mims: No, they just recently moved. We all...we have all his papers at the library.

Bellamy: Oh, I see. She...and Bill Landen, who ran a TV place. These folks by and large had, as I saw it, had some sand in their craw about me personally. And it would show up in some unusual ways. I remember one night in a board meeting, we had a proposal by the staff, there were some federal funds available to do such things as work with the...the local police. The familiarization of law enforcement with the schools. There was a foreign exchange plan that...for which funds would be available, and one other, I can't at the moment remember.

They were all three turned down. I...I felt probably because I proposed them. And I...I got to thinking, and Mary and I talked about it a lot, that the time might be approaching when these folks needed to get somebody with whom they could relate and work. And so when election time rolled around, I had told the newspaper, I had sent a Christmas message to every school employee and said this will be my last term and I appreciate all the help, and so on. And...but the board would not let that go.

I think some how or another there were several there who wanted to...to witness some kind of firing cause that's the way I...I felt...I felt about it. And when the spring rolled around and time for election came along, by that time there were seven members on the board and the...the chairman, I had talked to a lot about my situation. I had by that time a back that was...pretty bad shape, that's one of the things that limits my activities and he said, "What do you want to do?" I said, "I want to be elected."

Okay, so they had a breakfast meeting and of the seven, I thought I had four people who would support me. Unsicker, Dr. Carl Unsicker, Gerry Partrick, Dorothy Johnson, bless her heart, she stood up for me when the chips were down, and Mary Elizabeth Hood. And at the meeting they elected me. And the lady from the newspaper got up and started to leave, I said, "You'd better not leave if you want to hear something." And so I...I thanked the board for re-election.

But I told them that there was a...somebody had said a long time ago there was a time and place for all things, a season for everything and the season had come for me to hang up the...the superintendency and to let them have a chance to find somebody with whom they could work and relate and get things moving. I said, "I have witnessed so much hate as I come to these board meetings and so much bickering."

I remember with this same group going to a budget hearing down at the...the commissioners office when they were in the old CP&L building there at Fourth and Chestnut. And several of these, when they didn't get what the wanted in the budget, would want to say "Well take 'em to court," you know, and that's so available to us. I said "Yes it is, but we don't...that's not the way we've ever done things in New Hanover County. The commissioners are the duly elected controllers of the money and unless there's something pretty outrageous, they know what they can afford to let us have. So let's take the budget and see what has to be reduced and where best to reduce it."

And I wish I had kept a count...there in minutes somewhere...of how many motions were made, I remember Harry Latimer making a number of 'em, about what to do or not do with that budget. It was just a...a very trying morning. And we finally got the...the budget approved because the commissioners would tell us when we'd present the budget, "You're gonna have to cut thirty thousand dollars."

And our normal procedure had been to have a side meeting right then and say, "Okay, where will it least hurt to cut thirty thousand dollars?" And so we were trying that same...same approach that day, and that's a...that was a day when I felt as if they needed to get somebody. I told them that I had witnessed enough of that that I had just about had my fill of it and that they were dealing with a very fine school system and it deserved their...more from them than they were getting, in so many words. I forget just how I said it, and declined the position.

And I've never been sorry because I...hopefully they...it was a wakeup call to some people. I know that a number of these people didn't appear back on the board which I also think was a good...good thing. Because that's...that is not a place of all the elected offices, this is not a place where you need somebody with an axe to grind. They ought to be of the stature of Emsley Laney and John Codington and all of these others I mentioned who felt that they needed to be there to do their duty for the community which was the place where they'd chosen to live and bring up their children.

And they wanted the benefits to accrue to the children of those to come later. And when that wasn't happening, I think it...it began to show with the voters and the...so the board changed. I mentioned to you that I had not pointed my career toward the superintendency. In fact at one time I was in med school. Had to hang that up for many reasons. Dr. Berryhill, the dean at Carolina saved me a seat the next year, but I...I couldn't make it then either. But my...my next love was teaching. So I said this is something that is within striking distance and it's what I'm going to do.

But I wanted to stay in instruction, some phase of it. And after things began to settle down, after the final desegregation order, I had lots of things in mind I wanted to pursue. My generation of school people had begun to discover a number of things that we didn't know for certain about education. How children learn, the psychology of teaching young people, teenagers, and so on. I felt that...that we had finally arrived at that time, when the time was ripe for us to...to put a lot of that into greater practice than we had been able to in the past. That we needed to reduce as much lock step as we could.

I felt that there shouldn't be an absolute must on the amount of time somebody attended high school before going to college because I've watched young math geniuses who were ready to tackle the...the college program much earlier. And I'm glad to see the feed-in to college work increasing now. We had begun some of that. Felt also that we needed to make a greater effort to find out where education was taking place and recognize it in the overall twelve year program or whatever program we had.

We had a number of programs that tried to do this, in the diversified occupations and distributive education programs, but...and I also felt that the...the campus should be available for more time than we had traditionally used it. I tried to establish the extended day as a...a concept that was practiced in each high school. Because here's this expensive structure that traditionally in North Carolina, we had closed up at 3:30 in the afternoon and came back in the morning.

Here are all these facilities that we could make use of during the day and I was trying to promote that. We found out a little more about class load and where you ought to concentrate on decreasing the class load, which are the first three grades. If you can help a child through the first three grades so that they can learn to get along with other people, manage to break the apron string with home, and learn to work in another place to learn basic reading and the basic subjects, they can pretty well make it from then on with good teachers in larger groups.

But we need to...to get as close to the one-to-sixteen class load for those lower grades as we possibly can. I tried to do that with federal money but I could do you an entire tape on that. The...once...in fact we started a program under the Elementary and Secondary Education Act which started doing some of these things. And we found out when the guidelines were written that we were sort of forced back into a more traditional day as far as the placement of the students.

But that's...that's what I wanted to do had I been able to continue in education. In fact, I had accepted a regional job with the state department to do instructional work in this seventeen county area after the...the turning down the election in '81. But one morning I was sitting at the desk signing checks, Mary and I had been to the funeral of a retired teacher, Ida Kellan and brought me...Mary brought me back to the...the office and I said, "I'm having trouble rolling this window down." And..."wonder what's wrong with my arm?"

But I got out and went in and sat at the desk and they brought me a...a stack of checks to sign. And I was checking the bills and signing the checks and I...I remember glancing up and the room seemed to be filled with a blue fog and I remember seeing that hand jerk about three times toward my face and the...that's all I remember for about three days. Fortunately Ione Whitehead, who was the administrative assistant had just taken the new CPR class offered by the Red Cross and she heard me hit the floor (they tell me all this afterward), and came in and did mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.

They said Ione and I looked pretty terrible with lipstick when the rescue squad got there, and beat on my chest and got my heart going, and...and, oh, I guess it must have been three days later when I was aware of anything. And Mary was sitting in the chair by the hospital bed, and I said "What am I doing in the hospital?" And she said, "Well it's a long story." So, I found out that I'd had a stroke.

And so I immediately called the school board attorney and said "Here, bring me a resignation, they don't need this, let the...let the assistant superintendent...associate superintendent have control and...so the board can get on with it." And he did, right away. And I...as soon as I recuperated from that, learned to walk again around the block, and to talk...I had some problem with language, slurred a little. People would call me up and think I was drunk.

But I worked on that, worked on memory...really, really worked on memory because I knew that was a problem with stroke victims. And I've talked to lots of folks I've known since then, and told them about how I worked on memory. I wouldn't let anybody tell me an answer when I couldn't remember it, I'd make myself work it out through another nerve pathway and it worked...and still doing it!

Mims: Yea, it's been fantastic! We've got four hours of your memory here...so...

Bellamy: And, so then I...I also was able to...I remember the day I finally walked around the block and things began to pick up for me. I got on too many boards. Library board, the Crime Stoppers, you name it, and...until I got the day too full again and one day is said, "This is ridiculous, I'm gonna let some of the young folks do this." So I got out my box of stationery and resigned from everything except special projects. I helped...I tried to help with the city bond issue, I tried to help with the school bond issues when they'd come up, and I tried to...to do any little thing that I could to support the schools along the way. And it's been a...a pleasant retirement.

And it's been very pleasant to see the schools succeeding. I go to New Hanover and help them grade the senior projects and it's just a very rewarding thing to see...to see it working. And I have enjoyed life in Wilmington. This...I think I told you in the beginning of these conversations that I found out very early when I arrived in Wilmington that this was my place and I've never...never regretted that at all.

And never changed my mind. I had an offer of the superintendency in Charleston, my native state at one time, and so I went down and talked to them. And on the way home I said, Mary and I talked about it, I said, "Who am I kidding, I'm not gonna leave Wilmington!" And so now I haven't and I've never been sorry. It's a wonderful place.

Mims: Well, in the last couple of years, the issue of...of balancing the ratios at the schools has come into play again with redrawing lines. Did anybody from the board or from the management ever come and ask you your opinions or your...your think tank utilized at all?

Bellamy: Sometimes. I've had right many conversations with Don Hayes who worked with the schools while I was there. In fact, I talked to Don about three weeks ago. And he's a very conscientious man, I'm sorry that...that he seems to have gotten some bad press with the...the promotion of the alternative program. Because his intentions are very honorable, I can assure anybody.

All he wants to do is help the schools and the students, including those who...who have to have a different kind of approach temporarily out of the classroom. So we've talked about that a lot. There have been a few others who would call me from time to time. By in large, no, I stay out of their hair. I...I told some of them that I thought that was the number one best thing I could do was stay retired and...because I saw that so dramatically brought to the attention of everybody with Mr. Roland who was a very smart man.

He was a...a good handler of money, he had worked twenty four years here and had brought us through the dep...part of the Depression, World War II, which was a mammoth task, and it was just so unfortunate, I felt, that he didn't take a little softer attitude about things after 1960. But he didn't and it was...it was our loss, because he could have been a big help to...to the county, I felt, had he done so. Because he had a...had a...still had a following of people who thought that what he said was right, and so I had to...had to combat that.

Mims: I think we're about out of tape; I just want to take a moment to thank you once again for going into such detail about your life with us. And I hope that in the future somebody will appreciate your words of wisdom.

Bellamy: Thank you. Thank you for doing this.

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