Facing Our Neighbors

The Jackson Center is home to over 150 life history interviews and hundreds of recordings from neighborhood gatherings, church services, community actions, and meetings.   One of the series of oral histories that was featured in an interactive exhibit was called Facing Our Neighbors.  Community members explored what it meant to be a neighbor in the face of rapid change, and chose how they wanted to be photographed.  Below are a few excerpts from these oral histories and the photographs chosen.   If you are interested in listening to community histories now, we’d love for you to visit the Jackson Center. In the meantime, please enjoy a few select segments from just a few of our many oral history recordings.

“Nothing Without Our History”
Ms. Esphur Foster discusses the importance of history for her and her community.

Nothing Without Our History

“On Chapel Hill”
Mr. Eugene Farrar calls for work to be done in Chapel Hill, particularly in the area of affordable housing.

On Chapel Hill

Mr. Russell Edwards describes his thoughts during civil rights protests in Chapel Hill.


“The Hildebrand Name”
Dr. Reginald Hildebrand shares the story of how his family came to have its name.

04 The Hildebrand Name

“Comida y Comunidad”
Sr. Andres Morales-Castillo explica la importancia de la comida en una comunidad. (Mr. Andres Morales-Castillo explains the importance of food in a community.)

03 El Papel de la Comida en la Comunidad

“A Tight Neighborhood”
Rev. Albert Williams reflects on the history of African-American communities of Chapel Hill and Carrboro.

02 Tight Neighborhood

“On Franklin Street”
Mr. Michael Jenkins describes his interactions with people on Franklin St. in downtown Chapel Hill and shares some of his life philosophy.

03 On Franklin