Public Papers and Letters of Oliver Max Gardner: Governor of North Carolina, 1929-1933

By Edwin Gill; David Leroy Corbitt | Go to book overview

teachers. In 1900, public school property for the Negro was valued at $361,000. Now there is invested in school property used by the elementary and high school Negro children a total of more than $10,200,- 000.00. There are 108 Negro high schools in the State, in which there are enrolled more than 10,000 children. In higher education, there are five public supported institutions for the Negro race in this State and the State has appropriated for permanent improvements during the past ten years a grand total of $2,144,000.00 for these five institutions, and the General Assembly which has just adjourned made an appropriation for operation and maintenance for the next two years for these institutions in the sum of $481,400.00. I have only mentioned the State's contribution to the education of the Negro and have not referred to the great aid for Negro education afforded by private funds given to the Negroes of this State.

There is nothing more interesting to me than the sociological study of the American white man and the colored man living together, side by side, especially in the South, on terms of friendship and good will. Of course, we realize the involuntary circumstances under which the Negro came to America and his sudden emergence from slavery into freedom, with the attendant good and evil, and yet I can think of nothing more remarkable than the tolerance and forbearance of the blacks and whites, two totally dissimilar races, living together in the same country and living together without serious friction and incessant racial warfare. In spite of an occasional and fanatical injustice done them, I am convinced that the finest evidence of the white man's conception of justice and fair play is found in his attitude toward the Negro. In this State, in every business occupation and profession, the Negro is clearly in the minority. The white race absolutely dominates the South, and yet the public conscience of this State

-116-

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