Merwin Edsel Foard oral history interview 2, 2014 February 28
In this second of two interviews, Merwin Edsel Foard, native of Charlotte, North Carolina, and 1957 graduate of Charlotte College, continues to share about his experience attending the school. He begins by mentioning his service in the Korean War and Bonnie Cone’s advocacy for veteran education. He comments on the benefit he received from his degree and on the influence Ms. Cone and faculty members Mary Denny, Edyth Winningham, Herbert Hechenbleikner, and Loy Witherspoon had in his life. He recounts his extracurricular involvement at Charlotte College, where he was on the basketball team. He was also a member of the Sigma Lambda Chi fraternity and served as the vice president in student government. He recalls social life at the college and several classmates in particular, such as John Kilgo and Bill Reid. Mr. Foard also discusses his contributions as a student through the Speakers Bureau to raise support for Charlotte College and his continued advocacy as an alumnus. He tells of his singing activities at Charlotte College, with the Charlotte Opera Association, and at Carver College where he sang for a baccalaureate service. He also reflects on the social climate of the time and the civil rights movement. Other topics include Mr. Foard’s career with the Bell Telephone System, his activity surrounding the acceptance of Charlotte College as the fourth campus of the University of North Carolina System, and memorable interactions with Bonnie Cone.
Merwin Edsel Foard was an 83-year-old man at the time of interview, which took place at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte Center City building. He was born in Charlotte, North Carolina, in 1931. He was educated at Harding High School and Charlotte College in Charlotte, North Carolina, and was employed in numerous positions with American Trust Company, Southern Bell, South Central Bell, BellSouth, and AT&T in Charlotte, Atlanta, Georgia, and Birmingham, Alabama.