Katherine Council

Interviewed by Rita Phetmixay on March 24, 2011

This interview provides an overview of the place and birth of Mama Kat. Her house burnt down in 1962. She notes the change in neighbors versus before. She had children graduating from college. Her 3 kids were in college at the same time. The last baby was born with down syndrome. She recounts the change in the community in terms of demographics. Everybody used to know everybody. There are no children running outside now, everyone is grown up. Northside used to be a tight-knit community. There was a very dramatic moment in Mama Kat's life when Odell became ill. She tells the interviewer how she ended up with the name 'Mama Kat.' She had employment as a cashier and then cleanup lady. There was controversy with either going to the new school or staying at the old school as a cafeteria lady. " I love peoples" Odell's sickness comes back again but this time he becomes paralyzed. He worked in the food ministry back when it only had bread. Everyone in the family went to different churches while growing up. She recalls a childhood memory of calling Jones Ferry Road the "lake road." Her grandmother was the cook of the house. She has memories of going to a one-room school with only 40 children. She sees how older generation views were different from the younger generation views; schools were beginning to become integrated. Her daughter was one out of the 5 blacks to integrate into the white school. She would still be at her old house on 15-501 if her house did not burn down. Her father used to farm. Her son did not play any sports. She rented a house 4-5 months before moving into the current house she lives in. She did not have anything when she moved into the new home. The neighborhood now is so different from what it was back then. She describes demographics of the neighborhood, "I am surrounded!" She spoke about unfair treatment by a white man at the Laundromat and how a white woman helped her. She loves working right at home or next to it; it meant a lot back then to own a home. She spoke of how she met her husband. She shares what she really enjoys in the present moment is working with students from UNC.

View Details

Dublin Core

Title

Katherine Council

Description

This interview provides an overview of the place and birth of Mama Kat. Her house burnt down in 1962. She notes the change in neighbors versus before. She had children graduating from college. Her 3 kids were in college at the same time. The last baby was born with down syndrome. She recounts the change in the community in terms of demographics. Everybody used to know everybody. There are no children running outside now, everyone is grown up. Northside used to be a tight-knit community. There was a very dramatic moment in Mama Kat's life when Odell became ill. She tells the interviewer how she ended up with the name 'Mama Kat.' She had employment as a cashier and then cleanup lady. There was controversy with either going to the new school or staying at the old school as a cafeteria lady. " I love peoples" Odell's sickness comes back again but this time he becomes paralyzed. He worked in the food ministry back when it only had bread. Everyone in the family went to different churches while growing up. She recalls a childhood memory of calling Jones Ferry Road the "lake road." Her grandmother was the cook of the house. She has memories of going to a one-room school with only 40 children. She sees how older generation views were different from the younger generation views; schools were beginning to become integrated. Her daughter was one out of the 5 blacks to integrate into the white school. She would still be at her old house on 15-501 if her house did not burn down. Her father used to farm. Her son did not play any sports. She rented a house 4-5 months before moving into the current house she lives in. She did not have anything when she moved into the new home. The neighborhood now is so different from what it was back then. She describes demographics of the neighborhood, "I am surrounded!" She spoke about unfair treatment by a white man at the Laundromat and how a white woman helped her. She loves working right at home or next to it; it meant a lot back then to own a home. She spoke of how she met her husband. She shares what she really enjoys in the present moment is working with students from UNC.

Subject

Council, Katherine

Type

Oral History

Creator

Marian Cheek Jackson Center

Publisher

Marian Cheek Jackson Center

Date

2011-03-24

Format

MP3 (160000 bitrate)

Language

English

Identifier

LH_0142

Oral History Item Type Metadata

Interviewer

Rita Phetmixay

Interviewee

Council, Katherine

Interview Date

2011-03-24

Duration

0:30:29

Collection

Citation

Marian Cheek Jackson Center, “Katherine Council,” Marian Cheek Jackson Center Oral History Trust, accessed May 31, 2020, https://archives.jacksoncenter.info/LH/LH_0142.

Related Content

Born and raised in Northside, Katherine "Mama Kat" Council describes herself as a happy person who has lived a good life, despite hardships. She is an active member of St. Joseph CME church, volunteers constantly at the Heavenly Groceries food ministry and is a Community Mentor who loves children and never hesitates to…
Katherine, Council.jpg
At “Heavenly Groceries,” Mama Kat and Belinda, both lifetime residents of Chapel Hill/Carrboro and First Baptist Church members, offer food with a large serving of good humor and warmth. Mama Kat’s oldest daughter, Caroline, a leader of the local civil rights movement, moved to Canada to escape laws that barred marriage to…
http://stallmann.mayfirst.org/omeka/Facing_Our_Neighbors/___Facing_Our_Neighbors_Photos/FON_8.JPG
In this interview, Katherine “Mama Kat” Council talks about home and family. She discusses her parents, including her father’s death and her mother’s garden, and she describes where she grew up in rural Chapel Hill. Growing up was very different when Mama Kat was a child; she went to work and started a family early. She…
In this impromptu interview done at Heavenly Groceries Food Ministry, Katherine “Mama Kat” Council tells us what it was like growing up right outside of Carrboro back in the 1930’s. She recalls how for a while her family had to use a wagon to get to Hamlet’s Chapel CME on Sundays. She also discusses how her children ended…
In Molly Norwood’s interview of Katherine “Mama Kat” Council, Council begins by describing what life was like when she was growing up in Chapel Hill. She describes how open and geographically spread out the neighborhood was, how she was constantly playing with the other children in the neighborhood, and the tight-knit feel…
In this interview, Mama Kat gives us her coveted pound cake recipe, which she knows from memory because she makes it so often.
This interview is a part of the Marian Cheek Jackson Center’s A Place at the Table series. Katherine Council and Lillian Alston talk about their time volunteering with Heavenly Groceries. Katherine describes the origin of the food ministry before both women discuss their ties to the community and the people in it. In this…
Ms. Council, fondly known as Mama Kat, grew up on a farm in Chapel Hill down Jones Ferry Road and has lived in various places in the area her entire life. She went to the Northside school when it was just a one-room schoolhouse. She grew up as one of nine children and had lots of kids herself: one of her daughters was one…