Interviewee: Caroline Drakeford
Interviewer: Louise Pettus
Date: June 10-11, 1977
Caroline Drakeford was from Columbia, South Carolina. She attended the IWY conference because she believed it was long overdue and offered women an opportunity to discuss their needs. In particular, Drakeford was concerned with the traditional roles assigned to women and how this had impacted women’s employment and society at large. Drakeford was hesitant to endorse the Equal Rights Amendment because she believed there might be a difference between women being treated “fairly” in comparison to men versus “equal” with male coworkers. Drakeford acknowledged that the ERA might have some benefits, but she would not endorse it in its entirety.
Louise Pettus: What is your name and where are you from?
Caroline Drakeford: Caroline Drakeford, Columbia, South Carolina.
LP: And why are you here at the Conference, Caroline?
CD: I am here because I think that the Conference has long, it’s long overdue and that it’s time that women get together to discuss things that do concern them.
LP: What especially concerns you?
CD: The main thing is that the emphasis that has been placed on traditional roles of women in society. And I guess that’s about the main thing.
LP: Do you think of this primarily as being in employment or in social behavior or?
CD: Right. Social behavior and employment, just the way that women have been viewed.
LP: How did you get first conscious of this problem, what caused you to get involved in it?
CD: You mean the role of the woman?
LP: Um-hum. When did you first realize that women had a different role or did something happen to you specifically to move you to get to the place where you are now?
CD: Not really. It’s just, just the traditional role.
LP: I wondered if it was something that you read or something you heard from somebody else or a club or organization, school.
CD: Probably just heard in talking to other people or maybe some things happened to some people that I know, along that line.
LP: What do you think is the major, should be the major concern for women today? Any specifics, do you see any legislation that you think should be passed or not?
CD: Well, I’m not all for the ERA but there are some aspects of it that are beneficial to women. I’m not for, well certainly aspects of employment, but I think that we should be treated fairly if not equal. And I think that’s been the major concern, being treated fairly. And, well you know, this has only come about within the past few years and, well things are changing, too because I was just talking to a friend the other day about the fact that it’s only been a few years since women have been able to, you know, say buy a house or get a credit card. And really it’s a landmark almost. Because, and it still hasn’t changed that much because some places you still have Mrs. whatever your husband name on the card, so the barrier has been broken but I still think that there’s a lot that needs to be done.
LP: Okay. Thank you very much.
End of Interview