xt7cz8929x5q https://nyx.uky.edu/dips/xt7cz8929x5q/data/mets.xml North Carolina United States. Work Projects Administration. North Carolina 1940 Other contributors: Levitt, William H.; Durham (N.C.); North Carolina. State Planning Board. 3 preliminary leaves, v-vi, 62 pages including tables, diagrams maps (some folded, including frontispiece) 28 cm. UK holds archival copy for ASERL Collaborative Federal Depository Program libraries. Call number HD268.D9 A5 1940. books  English [Durham] Contact the Special Collections Research Center for information regarding rights and use of this collection. North Carolina Works Progress Administration Publications Report of the Real Property Survey, Durham, North Carolina: 1939-1940; Work Projects Administration, O.P.  61-1-32-148; Sponsored by City of Durham [and] North Carolina State Planning Board; William H. Levitt, State Supervisor text Report of the Real Property Survey, Durham, North Carolina: 1939-1940; Work Projects Administration, O.P.  61-1-32-148; Sponsored by City of Durham [and] North Carolina State Planning Board; William H. Levitt, State Supervisor 1940 2015 true xt7cz8929x5q section xt7cz8929x5q   I IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII II II
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 REPORT
A A of
The Real Property Survey  
DURHAM, NORTH CAROLINA
ig 1939-1940

    
 

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REPORT
oi
I The Real Property Survey
DURHAM, NORTH CAROLINA
WORK PROIECTS ADMINISTRATION
O. P. 65-1-32-148
SPONSORED BY I
CITY OF DURHAM l J
COUNTY OF DURHAM i
NORTH CAROLINA STATE PLANNING BOARD
s
WILLIAM H. LEVITT   I
Stcxte Supervisor  
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1939-1940 [
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 NORTH CAROLINA STATE PLANNING BOARD
IOHN W. HARRELSON, Chairman
‘ THEODORE S. IOHNSON, Consultant
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NORTH CAROLINA
WORK PROJECTS ADMINISTRATION
j C. C McGINNIS, State Aclmintstratcr
MAY E CAMPBELL, State Direcicr
. Professional and Service Division ·
. CHARLIE HUSS, State Supervisor '
Research and Records Section ‘
I
NORTH CAROLINA REAL PROPERTY SURVEY STAFF j ,
I WILLIAM H. LEVITT, State Project Supervisor I  
IACOB LEVIN, Assistant State Project Supervisor   .
MINNA K. ABERNETHY, District Project Supervisor ·
I HUDSON C. STANSBURY, District Project Supervisor . j
H. I. F. NANTON, Supervisor, Negro Work  
M. ESTHER KING, Chief Clerk  
I IANE COBB, City Project Director a
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 CONTENTS
Pages
Introduction .................... v, vi
Chapter
I. Historical Background ............... l-3
II. Land Use .................... 5-8
III. Real Property .................. 9-35
IV. Low Income Housing ................ 37-52
Glossary ...................... 53-55
Appendix - Summary Tables ................ 57-62
MAPS ? _
i
Identification .................. Frontisplece
Land Use ................... Following page 4 .
Land Coverage ................. " " 6 ‘
Converted Structures .................... lO T j
Age of Structures ..................... I3 *
Owner—Occupancy ..................... I5 { I
Mortgage Status ............. , ....... l7 · ‘
Duration of Owner-Occupancy ................. l9 , `
Duration of Tenant-Occupancy ................. 2O Q
Average Rental .................... - . . 22 1
Race of Household ..................... 28 E
Substandard Dwelling Units .................. 36
Condition of Residential Structures ............... 39
Sanitary Facilities .................... 4l I
Persons Per Room ..................... 45 1 _
Block Data .................. Following page 52 ` *
l x

 CH'} HITS Page
Dwelling Units Occupied by White and Negro Tenants, by Adequacy ..... 5S
Number of white Tenant Single Families of 2 to 7 Persons Living In
Substandard Dwellings by Monthly Net and Gross Rent ........ 45
Number of Negro Tenant Single Families of 2 to 7 Persons Living In
Substandard Dwellings by Monthly Net and Gross Rent ........ 47
Number of white Tenant Single Families of 2 to 7 Persons Living In
Substandard Dwellings by Annual Income and Monthly Gross Rent .... 49
Number of Negro Tenant Single Famllles of 2 to 7 Persons Living In
Substandard Dwellings by Annual Income and Monthly Gross Rent .... Sl
TABLES
Land Use
I. Area of Land by Use ................. 6
, II. Distribution of Land by Type of Use ............ 6
III. Number and Area of Structures by Type ........... 8
Real Property
IV. Percent of All Dwelling Units in Each Rent Group in Poor Condition
(ln Need of Major Repairs or Unfit for Use), by Occupancy Status . ll
4 V. Percent Distribution by Value of Property for S1ngle—Fam1ly Owner-
— Occupied Structures by Number of Rooms In Structure ...... I6
. j VI. Number and Percent of All Dwelling Units which Are Inadequate by
Monthly Rental or Rental Value ........,... 25
VII. Dwelling Units In Need of Major Repairs or Unfit for Use as Percent
of All Dwelling Units by Occupancy Status by Plumbing Equipment. . 25
VIII. Percent of All Dwelling Units with Modern Facilities by Monthly
Rental or Rental Value ............... 26
. IX. Number and Percent Distribution of All Occupied Dwelling Units, by
Race of Household, by Occupancy Status .......... 29
X. Number and Percent Distribution of All Occupied Dwelling Units by
Occupancy Status, by Race of Household, by Condition ..... 50
- XI. Dwelling Units with More Than One and One-Half Persons Per Room as
Percent of All Occupied Dwelling Units in Each Group, by Race,
by Occupancy Status ................ 52
XII. Number of Persons In Units with More Than One and One-Half Persons
Per Room as Percent of All Persons in Each Group by Occupancy
Status by Age of Persons .............. 55
Low Income Housing
XIII. Number and Percent Distribution of Dwelling Units In Each Substand—
ard Category, by Occupancy Status, by Race of Household .... 40
XIV. Inadequate Dwelling Units as Percent of All Dwelling Units, by Occu-
pancy Status, by Physical Factors of Inadequacy ....... 42
XV. Number and Percent of Employable Persons who Are Galnfully Employed,
by Number of Employable Persons in All Family Groups, by Race and
Occupancy ................... 50
D
  .” , ''_'   V ~-» - » .-  ·  

 INTRODUCTION
The seriousness of the housing problem, which at present has greater social significance than al-
most any other phase of our co munity life, has been aggravated throughout the nation by years of de-
pression and neglect. lt has long been recognized by those who are concerned with the acuteness of the
problem and are Interested in its solution, that basic data must first be made available about struct-
ural conditions, population, income, rents, and facilities. Such information can best be obtained by
making a survey of real property. The lack of private funds for research of the nature and scope of a
real property survey has been a great factor in retarding the attack on the housing problem. The avail-
ability of relief workers of the white collar class who could serve as enumerators and tabulators of the
desired data has provided us with a unique opportunity to obtain this vital information, while provid-
ing these workers with an occupation suitable to their standards and training.
A standard set of instructions for carrying out real property surveys, entitled Technique for a
Real Property Survey, was developed in l955 by the co—operative effort of the then works Progress Ad-
ministration, the Central Statistical Board, and the Federal Housing Administration. This uniform tech-
nique, which provides for the proper training of personnel, checking of enumeration, reviewing of sched-
ules, and careful organization of the tabulations and map work, has made it possible to collect sim-
ilar data in all parts of the United States for dealing with a problem which has definite national
scope.
Because of the growing demand for these factual data on the part of awakening civic groups, and rec-
ognition of the need for improved housing, the North Carolina State Planning Board, in l938, submitted
for approval to the work Projects Administration a project proposing to make a complete study of land
use, real property, and low income families in several North Carolina cities and towns, of which Durham `
was one. ·
Following the standard procedure for real property inventories, the entire city was enumerated by
blocks. A sheet was prepared for each block on which the area measurements and descriptions of the use ,
of every plot of land and every structure were listed. This information furnished on the block lists, I
when mapped, constitutes the land use survey, and is of great value to a community as a guide to the · I
formulation of policies in regard to zoning, communication facilities, and parks and playgrounds, as .
well as the location of future enterprise. i
Every dwelling unit on each block was canvassed and a real property schedule filled in covering the
detailed date which, later tabulated by blocks and then for the city as a whole, served as the basis for `
the analysis attempted in this report. These data show, among other things, the type and construction
of all dwellings in the city, their condition and age, and the presence or absence of modern conveniences, I
such as plumbing, central heating, and electric lighting. They also indicate the number and age of all
persons who occupy the city's dwellings, the length of time they have lived there, the number of room- » .
ers and extra families in each dwelling, and the race of all occupants. The tabulation of the informa- I
tion on the real property schedules is assembled in 98 tables. This constitutes the dwelling survey. 5
In addition to the information thus made available for every block in the city, as well as for the city
as a whole, a series of maps was prepared in connection with the dwelling survey, which graphically i `
presents this information. For each of the significant factors of the survey—age and condition of struct-
ures, the number of dwellings occupied by owners or tenants and the duration of their respective occu— 3
pancies, the percent mortgaged, the percent overcrowded, and several others--a separate map has been pre- ` g
pared. By means of differently shaded cross-hatchings each of these factors is portrayed for every block i
in the city. Thus, at a glance, contiguous blocks or areas of the city can be compared or analyzed for
any one or all of the significant housing factors covered by the survey. i
The real property schedules were checked as soon as they were enumerated and examined for factors
which would determine the adequacy or inadequacy of a dwelling. Those dwellings designated as inade- I `
quate or substandardby this check were re-enumerated for data onthe families they housed. This study is
called the"Low Incomehousing AreaSurvey." It furnishes data onthe income,age, relationship,marital sta- 1
v 1 \
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 tus, sex, and occupation of each individual who is inadequately housed, as well as the place and type of
work, transportation facilities, and length of time required of each employed member of these families to
reach his place of work. It also makes available information on the annual expenditures of the family for
facilities in addition to rent. Following a separate technique entitled the tow Income Housing Area_Sur;
vey, which was set up as a standard procedure by the same federal agencies responsible for the real prop-
erty technique with the addition of the United States Housing Authority, these data on low income fam-
ilies were treated as a separate survey. The original schedules, after their enumerationhas beenchecked,
were coded and transcribed to data cards from which l47 tables were derived.
The Real Property Survey set up an office in Durham for the duration of the land use survey and the
enumeration of the dwelling and low income family schedules, as well as the preliminary checking of these
activities. The schedules were then sent to Raleigh, the state headquarters of the survey for coding,
tabulation, mapping, and analysis.
Actual work on the state project was begun in October l95S, and the Durham unit of the Survey was
opened in February l959. Some 40 field enumerators were employed in Durham, 25 white and l5 Negro, and
an office staff of 2O people performed clerical functions and checking duties. Of this total, all but
one, hrs. J. S. Cobb, local supervisor, were taken from the certified rolls of the work Projects Adminis-
tration. The city and county of Durham provided the office space, equipment, supplies, forms, and other
materials necessary for the completion of the survey. By the first of August l939, the field enumeration
was completed and the schedules sent to Raleigh. Block tabulations and the tabulation of low income fam-
ily data were completed in November. General tabulations were completed by the middle of March l94O and
the analysis of the data in June. Presentation maps and charts were completed by the end of July.
Accuracy in enumerating and tabulating the data for this survey was stressed as of paramount import-
ance throughout its duration. Although complete accuracy is impossible to achieve in surveys of this
. type, every precaution was taken to keep the percentage of error down to a minimum. ln spite of those
, elements of normal human fallibility which are always present, and the necessity for speed as a possi-
f ble factor operating against the quality of the work of the enumerators, a spot check, in which five per-
. cent of the total enumeration was reworked, showed an average error of less than four percent for the en-
tire survey. It is believed, therefore, that the accuracy of the basic data gathered in this study will
compare favorably with that of similar survey work, and furthermore that the small percentage of error
which does occur is largely offset by the mathematical law of averages as applied to compensatory errors.
The tables prepared by the survey are designed to present in as lucid a manner as possible the ex-
act results of the enu eration. However, a sound understanding of each table is necessary to make relia-
` ble any interpretation of the figures presented. A practical attempt has been made below to analyze the
statistical information to the point where it should readily be susceptible to a pertinent workable inter-
pretation.
` The Real Property Survey could not have been completed successfully had it not been for the excel-
lent spirit of co—operation displayed by the local government and the citizenry of Durham, along with the
fine reception accorded it by the press. Evidence of keen interest in the whole problem of housing was
found everywhere, and the work of the survey was followed closely by many civic groups and individuals.
The materials and results of the project will be distributed as follows: Basic schedules both for
real property and low income families will be filed with the city manager of Durham. Block tabulations,
general tabulations, and a set of correlation tables derived from the general tabulations will also be
given to the city of Durham for the use of the city engineer and the zoning co mission. Copies of the
final report will be filed with the universities, libraries, and proper city and county departments. In
addition, Federal agencies such as the Federal Housing Administration, the United States Housing Author-
ity, and the Home Owners Loan Corporation will be furnished copies of the report.
It is hoped that the results of the survey will assist in the future planning and development of the
city of Durham, as well as help lay the groundwork for the amelioration of those social ills com only ac-
knowledged as the concomitants of a housing problem.
’ vi
 " an    ~»  

 CHAPTER I
HISTORICAL BACKGROUND
The region in which Durham is today located was previously occupied by var-
ious Indian tribes, who had already emigrated before 17SO, when the first white
settlers, of English and Scotch extraction, began making their home in this area.
The section was then part of Orange County and by 1777 contained only a few hun-
dred Inhabitants. Settlement of Durham itself dates back only to the 18SO's, when
a community known as Prattsburg serviced the farmers in the surrounding area with
its wheat and corn mills. The construction of the North Carolina Railroad, 1852-
1856, gave impetus to the growth of the town. when William Pratt, a large land
owner, refused to give the railroad a right-of-way or land for a station, Dr.
Bartlett Durham offered four acres about two miles west of Prattsburgh and the
station was named for him. The railroad detcured around Prattsburg and the Pratt
property.
There were fewer than lOO people in Durham in 1855, two years before the town
was incorporated. By 1880, however, the population had increased to 2,041, and in ‘
1881 the town was made seat of the new county created from parts of Orange and Wake. ,
Durham's Industrial growth stems directly from the development of the manu-
facture of tobacco. As early as 1858 Robert F. Morris was already engaged in the
industry. In the historic interval when Sherman's army was located near Durham, ·
the soldiers are said to have sampled and liked the product of the factory which A .
was then operated by John R. Green, originator of the Bull Durham blend, thus ,
spreading its fame. E
To the Duke family, however, goes the credit for developing the industry to
its present gigantic proportions. when Washington Duke left the Confederate Army I
in 1865 he had to walk 157 miles to his farm near Durham to return to his impover— l
ished family. Duke began grinding the tobacco his sons had hidden from the North- ‘
ern soldiers. The blend which he labeled Pro Bono Publico he peddled to soldiers
and others along with flour and home—made lard. His enterprise proved prosperous 3 `
enough to engage his three sons as well as himself. By 1874 all four Dukes were i {
established tobacco manufacturers in Durham. In 188Q James Buchanan Duke, one of I
the sons, in order to escape the sharp competition in the tobacco manufacturing @
field, decided to make cigarettes, by then an important though almost exclusively { I
European product. within a few years the installation of improved machinery in-
creased daily production from 2,5OO to lO0,000 cigarettes a day and made possible
large-scale exports of the product to Europe. In 189O James B. Duke, after absorb-
ing practically all other manufacturers, created the American Tobacco Company, a
virtual monopoly of the entire industry. The Monopoly was dissolved into smaller '
units in 1911 by a Supreme Court decree, but in the interval Durham had become
1 I I
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 — the world's tobacco capital, and the Duke fortune was flrmly founded. Today the
c1ty’ manufactures about one-fourth of all cigarettes produced in this country.
Nine warehouses conduct sales of leaf tobacco and several mllllon pounds of for-
elgn-grown tobacco are imported annually.
In the latter years of his life Mr. Duke engaged ln the development of water
power ln the Piedmont and Mountain sections of North Carollna, whlch resulted in A
the establishment of an electric power system now operated by the Duke Power Com-
pany and its subsidiaries. An endowment fund of approximately $80,000,000 creat-
ed by the wdll of James B. Duke in 1925, of which Duke Unlversity ln Durham ls the
principal beneficiary, receives most of its funds from the securities of this pow-
er system. This endowment ls the largest emanating from the South and the largest
yet made for the exclusive benefit of the region. The Duke endowment also in-
cludes aid for churches and hospitals. Duke Hospital, opened ln 1930 as part of
the University, has a four million dollar plant and contains 406 beds. It maln-
talns a public dlspensary and 14 cllnlcs.
The development of the tobacco lndustry In Durham brought the development of
other commercial and Industrial enterprise. The manufacture of textile mill pro-
, ducts ls now second in industrial importance to tobacco manufacture. while the
latter, with four large establishments, employed 5,314 people in 1938, textlles,
with 17, employed 4,719. Hosiery ls the principal textile product, with cotton
B fabrics next ln importance and cotton yarn third. The Industrial Directory of the
North Carolina State Department of Conservation and Development, published ln 1938
A with the assistance of the WPA, shows that Durham had 59 wholesale establishments,
with net sales of $16,678,000; 695 retall establishments with net sales of
$17,758,000; and 160 service establishments with receipts of $775,000. Other in-
dustries besides tobacco and textlles are: food and kindred products, enploylng
408 workers; lumber and timber basic products employing 239; printing, publish-
7 ing and allied industries, employing 194; chemical and allied products with 112
employees; metal, metal working, and metal products wlth 68 employees; and miscel-
laneous occupatlons such as furniture finishing, laundrles, etc., employing about
350 workers. In all some 13,000 persons in Durham are engaged ln lndustry.
As a transportation center Durham ls serviced by the Southern, Seaboard,
I Norfolk Southern, Norfolk and western, and the Durham and Southern Railroads. The
Atlantic Greyhound, Carolina Coach, and Vlrglnla Stage bus lines also operate
through Durham.
The status of the Negro In Durham is notable. Property holdings by Negroes
in Durham amounted to more than four million dollars ln 1935. Besides this, busi-
ness assets aggregatlng seven mllllon dollars are owned and controlled by Negroes.
The North Carolina Mutual Life Insurance Company has grown from a small beginning
in Durham in 1898 to the largest Negro insurance company in the world, operating
ln elght states and employing 1,067 persons. Development of the insurance business
, 2
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 inspired the organization of the Mechanics and Farmers Bank in l907, now one of
the largest in Durham with total resources of $1,489,000.
The c1ty's growth ls show ln the table below. while the increase ln popu-
lation during the decade from l930 to 1940 has not been nearly so phenomenal as
that for the period l920—l930, there has been an unmlstakeable growth, as the pre-
llmlnary l94O figure of almost 60,000 reveals.
Year Population
1890 5,485
1900 5,679
" 1910 18,241
1920 21,719
1950 52,057
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