Nathaniel White Sr. was born in 1914 in Henderson, NC. After living in Hampton and Norfolk, VA, he moved to Durham in the early 1940s. White was trained in printing as a student at then Hampton Institute (now Hampton University) and established his own printing business in the heart of the Hayti community after moving to Durham. He was an active member of the community, serving in a number of organizations including the Committee for the Affairs of Black People and Durham Human Relations Committee. His son, Nathaniel White Jr. was part of the first five African American undergraduate students to attend Duke University. White Sr. died in 1999.
Click here and listen to part 2 of this interview starting with 22:06-29:07. In this interview conducted by Paul Ortiz in 1995, Nathaniel White Sr. describes the methods by whites in power to hinder African Americans from voting in Durham and the activities of the Durham Committee for Negro Affairs and local churches in organizing the vote among black citizens.
Behind the Veil: Documenting African American Life in the Jim Crow South was an oral history project led by the Center for Documentary Studies at Duke University from 1992-1995. The project used scholars to interview African Americans to capture their personal experiences living through the era of Jim Crow. There are over 1,200 interviews, with 310 from North Carolina, and 44 specifically from Durham. 410 have been digitized and available in the Duke Libraries Digital Collections.