Interview with Lyman T. Johnson, May 30, 1979

Project: Wade Hall Papers (2009ms131): Interviews with Lyman T. Johnson

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Interview Summary

Lyman T Johnson, a Louisvillian for many decades, shares his wisdom about what makes the city what it is at the time of the interview. At the beginning of the interview, Johnson begins to describe influential leaders in the black community. Johnson mentions the fact that black workers were often exploited by their employers because they were never paid the same wages for doing the same work as their white counterparts. Johnson mentions how the northern textile industry took advantage of a large number of unskilled black laborers in order to make more money by lowering the cost of production of items while raising the price. This greed kept a plantation style mindset alive in the south, and only further divided the black workers from white workers. Segregation affected nearly every part of life in the south at this time, and it could easily be seen in education. As the city of Louisville grew, urban sprawl prompted white people to move further and further from the expanding black neighborhoods. Oftentimes white business owners would choke out any sort of black businesses, not because they were viewed as competition, but because they saw it as an insult for white customers to have to look at the black community on the other side of the street. All public parks, except for one, being the smallest, was off limits to the black community. In the last hour of the interview, Johnson goes into great detail about how he became involved in the Louisville education system. After becoming a teacher at Central High School during the Great Depression, Johnson slowly started taking up more and more roles within the school and in the district.

Interview Accession

2019oh1561_whlj0018

Interviewee Name

Lyman T. Johnson

Interviewer Name

Wade Hall

Interview Date

1979-05-30

Interview Rights

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

Interview Usage

Interviews may only be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Interviews may only be reproduced with permission from Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

All rights to the interviews, including but not restricted to legal title, copyrights and literary property rights, have been transferred to the University of Kentucky Libraries.

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Johnson, Lyman T. Interview by Wade Hall. 30 May. 1979. Lexington, KY: Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.

Johnson, L.T. (1979, May 30). Interview by W. Hall. Wade Hall Papers (2009ms131): Interviews with Lyman T. Johnson. Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries, Lexington.

Johnson, Lyman T., interview by Wade Hall. May 30, 1979, Wade Hall Papers (2009ms131): Interviews with Lyman T. Johnson, Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries.





Persistent Link for this Record: https://kentuckyoralhistory.org/ark:/16417/xt7160tpm7ds1