Bronze Arcs: Empowering and Diverse Opportunities 

Historical Markers

Oral History Interview with William and Josephine Clement, June 19, 1986. Courtesy Southern Oral History Program, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Click on the icon above to hear William and Josephine Clement discuss their experiences in Durham with community organization involvement, racial progress, and desegregation. In many ways, this interview from the Southern Oral History Program highlights the themes represented in the Bronze Arcs art installation.  Josephine, who served on the Durham City Board of Education,  discusses the complicated roles of African American Women in the South, and William, who worked for NC Mutual, discusses the the relationship between various groups and businesses.

The creation of "Empowering and Diverse Opportunities" can also be seen in the actions of CC Spaulding, who served as President of NC Mutual, particularly in how he formed a powerful relationship with Louis Austin, editor of the Carolina Times newspaper. Together, their power through business and media allowed them to greatly influence Durham's African American community. They campaigned for various issues affecting the community, allowed for the hiring of more black city employees, increased registered black voters, and generally raised community awareness. (From Walter Weare's Black Business in the New South)

Women speaking to children in classroom. Circa 1950s or 1960s. Courtesy Duke Libraries, North Carolina Mutual Archives.