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Legacies Project Oral History: Nellie Hill Trapp

Thu, 01/16/2020 - 9:13am

When: 2020

Born in 1922, Nellie Harrell grew up in Richmond, Virginia. She began dancing at age 14, and moved to New York City a few years. During the height of her career as a noted singer, dancer, and entertainer, she went by her married name Nellie Hill. Hill performed in early music videos called “soundies,” appeared on the cover of Jet Magazine, and frequented Black clubs such as New York’s Kelly’s Stables and Detroit’s Flame Show Bar and 20 Grand. In the 1950s she married James Trapp and had three children. After retiring, she volunteered at Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit.

Nellie Trapp was interviewed by students from Skyline High School in Ann Arbor in 2010 as part of the Legacies Project.

Transcript

  • [00:00:08.77] TALAYAH THORNTON: So can you please state your name?
  • [00:00:11.36] NELLIE TRAPP: Nellie Trapp.
  • [00:00:13.06] TALAYAH THORNTON: Can you please spell your name?
  • [00:00:14.28] NELLIE TRAPP: N-E-L-L-I-E T-R-A-P-P.
  • [00:00:20.18] TALAYAH THORNTON: Thank you. What is your birthday, including the year.
  • [00:00:24.41] NELLIE TRAPP: My birthday is June the 26th, 1922.
  • [00:00:30.19] TALAYAH THORNTON: How old are you?
  • [00:00:31.68] NELLIE TRAPP: I am 88 years old.
  • [00:00:35.60] TALAYAH THORNTON: How would you-- what is your religion, if any?
  • [00:00:39.91] NELLIE TRAPP: Baptist.
  • [00:00:40.59] TALAYAH THORNTON: You're a Baptist?
  • [00:00:41.42] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes, I'm a Baptist.
  • [00:00:43.38] TALAYAH THORNTON: What is the highest level of formal education you have completed?
  • [00:00:48.39] NELLIE TRAPP: High school, and then I went to a nursing school in Detroit. And I went to Southwest Hospital. They closed that now. And it had a study. And then I-- oh, I've done--
  • [00:01:14.92] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you attend any additional school or formal career training beyond that, beyond high school?
  • [00:01:22.85] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes, in New York City, I went to school and was learning typing. And then, like I'm saying, I went to this-- I took a nursing course here in Detroit. And then I did a lot of traveling.
  • [00:01:44.30] TALAYAH THORNTON: What is your marital status? If married, is your spouse still living?
  • [00:01:49.73] NELLIE TRAPP: No, he passed away in 1992.
  • [00:01:52.30] TALAYAH THORNTON: So you were married?
  • [00:01:54.14] NELLIE TRAPP: I was married.
  • [00:01:55.96] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was your husband's name?
  • [00:01:57.88] NELLIE TRAPP: James.
  • [00:02:00.01] TALAYAH THORNTON: How many children do you have?
  • [00:02:03.46] NELLIE TRAPP: I have one, but I have three others that I raised from birth.
  • [00:02:10.58] TALAYAH THORNTON: What are their names?
  • [00:02:12.48] NELLIE TRAPP: One was named Sheila. One was named Angela. And one was named Davied, D-A-V-I-E-D.
  • [00:02:22.11] TALAYAH THORNTON: How many siblings do you have?
  • [00:02:25.42] NELLIE TRAPP: You mean children?
  • [00:02:26.19] TALAYAH THORNTON: Siblings-- like brothers or sisters.
  • [00:02:28.06] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, all of them are passed. I had four brothers and four sisters. And I'm the only one that's alive.
  • [00:02:37.81] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was your primary occupation?
  • [00:02:41.29] NELLIE TRAPP: Primary occupation?
  • [00:02:42.53] TALAYAH THORNTON: Such as, for example, a housewife, or--
  • [00:02:46.58] NELLIE TRAPP: No, I was an entertainer.
  • [00:02:47.73] TALAYAH THORNTON: You were an entertainer. You were what kind of entertainer?
  • [00:02:50.90] NELLIE TRAPP: Singer.
  • [00:02:51.68] TALAYAH THORNTON: A singer?
  • [00:02:52.39] NELLIE TRAPP: Yeah.
  • [00:02:55.61] TALAYAH THORNTON: At what age did you retire?
  • [00:02:58.70] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, I really haven't retired from singing. Once in a while, I just do that for different occasions. But for traveling, I don't travel that much. No.
  • [00:03:12.62] TALAYAH THORNTON: OK. Now we can begin the first part of our interview, beginning with some things you can recall about your family history. For my first question, I'll ask you, do you know any stories about your family name-- anything you can recall from a past time?
  • [00:03:32.61] NELLIE TRAPP: You mean what nationality it was, or something like that?
  • [00:03:36.84] TALAYAH THORNTON: No--
  • [00:03:37.22] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh.
  • [00:03:37.59] TALAYAH THORNTON: --stories about your family name. So you stated earlier that your name was Trapp.
  • [00:03:42.74] NELLIE TRAPP: Trapp-- that was the married name.
  • [00:03:45.74] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was your maiden name?
  • [00:03:47.16] NELLIE TRAPP: My maiden name was Harrell, H-A-R-R-E-L-L.
  • [00:03:51.23] TALAYAH THORNTON: Harrell. Well, can you tell us any history behind that name?
  • [00:03:57.58] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, right now, I don't--
  • [00:04:03.20] TALAYAH THORNTON: Any stories you can recall?
  • [00:04:05.87] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, it's a lot of stories growing up. But I don't know anything that's going to be so important about the [LAUGHS] Harrells, you know.
  • [00:04:22.69] TALAYAH THORNTON: Any stories that you can come up about your family name is good.
  • [00:04:29.93] NELLIE TRAPP: I really got a story, but it's all in writing. And I can not sit here and say that I can tell about the stories. You don't mean where they're from, or the background. You mean-- [SIGHS] when I was a little girl? No, not that.
  • [00:04:51.26] TALAYAH THORNTON: Like a story passed down from generation to generation about your family.
  • [00:04:58.98] NELLIE TRAPP: Just that it was-- I don't understand that question. But it was all--
  • [00:05:09.42] TALAYAH THORNTON: Do you feel uncomfortable about me asking these questions?
  • [00:05:13.01] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes, because I can't find no answers right now, cause I'm really trying to understand the question.
  • [00:05:19.35] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, what I asked you is, is there any stories about your family name-- any stories you can recall, like, maybe your grandmother, or your mother, or a great aunt might have told you about your family name?
  • [00:05:34.97] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes, they did. But it's all in writing. And right now, I couldn't tell you a story.
  • [00:05:39.83] TALAYAH THORNTON: OK, well, we can skip that question.
  • [00:05:42.06] NELLIE TRAPP: OK. [LAUGHS]
  • [00:05:43.84] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, are there any naming traditions in your family?
  • [00:05:48.78] NELLIE TRAPP: Naming what?
  • [00:05:50.12] TALAYAH THORNTON: Like, for example, if every girl was born in the family, their name begins with a T or something.
  • [00:05:57.35] NELLIE TRAPP: No. No, no, no.
  • [00:05:58.56] TALAYAH THORNTON: Or if every second cousin born to the family is named John.
  • [00:06:03.59] NELLIE TRAPP: No. No. No, it wasn't nothing like that. No.
  • [00:06:08.77] TALAYAH THORNTON: Why did your-- I'm sorry. Did your family migrate to America, or were they born in the US?
  • [00:06:18.01] NELLIE TRAPP: They was born in the US.
  • [00:06:19.64] TALAYAH THORNTON: OK. What stories have come down to you about your parents and grandparents, or more distant ancestors?
  • [00:06:29.99] NELLIE TRAPP: What story has come down?
  • [00:06:31.31] TALAYAH THORNTON: Stories-- stories passed down, like folklores, anything that you can recall passed down to you from a family member about your ancestry.
  • [00:06:42.74] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, I don't like to tell this story, because my grandfather would tell us about his father, how he-- [SIGHS] I'm uncomfortable about this one because, I think, that part of the family-- I've always been keeping it to myself, because it's involved different races. And I don't want to say that I'm bragging, or I'm so different, or this and that, because his--
  • [00:07:14.65] TALAYAH THORNTON: As we said, the whole point of the interview is to make you comfortable.
  • [00:07:20.18] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, it's going to-- and it's in history. And it's in the library here that the grandfather was-- oh. [LAUGHS]
  • [00:07:32.80] TALAYAH THORNTON: You don't have to answer the question. If you feel uncomfortable, we can just skip the question.
  • [00:07:36.77] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes, cause this is at the museum, which I'm happy to be here. But my grandfather-- that's my daddy's father. And his father-- that part, I can remember-- he would talk about how mean he was, cause-- [SIGHS] you can't say he was a slave holder. Can I say that? That's what he was. Cut that out.
  • [00:08:04.99] TALAYAH THORNTON: We don't have to answer these questions.
  • [00:08:07.42] NELLIE TRAPP: Yeah.
  • [00:08:07.86] TALAYAH THORNTON: [INAUDIBLE] these questions, we'll move on. The whole point of the interview is to make sure that you're comfortable with answering the questions. Well, our next question we can go onto is, do you know any courtship stories?
  • [00:08:21.80] NELLIE TRAPP: Any courtship stories? [LAUGHS] Only courtship story I would know about would be myself. And my sisters, when they was courting and-- is that what you mean, like courtship, the family courting?
  • [00:08:35.07] TALAYAH THORNTON: Courtship stories-- or how did your parents, grandparents, and other relatives come to meet and marry?
  • [00:08:42.71] NELLIE TRAPP: I don't remember. I just know that my mother, when she told me that my father, they-- ooh, that part. They met each other. And he was in the service. And then he met my mother. That part, I'm uncomfortable, too, about it.
  • [00:09:06.69] TALAYAH THORNTON: OK, we can move on.
  • [00:09:08.10] NELLIE TRAPP: Yeah.
  • [00:09:10.46] TALAYAH THORNTON: Now, this section is concerning your earliest memories in childhood. So in this one, I'll ask you questions such as, where did you grow up, and what are your strongest memories of that place?
  • [00:09:23.65] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, I grew up in Richmond, Virginia. And I went to elementary school, Dunbar High School, in Richmond. And I went to Armstrong High, and I graduated from there. And from Richmond, Virginia, I migrated to New York City.
  • [00:09:44.23] TALAYAH THORNTON: Do you have any strong memories of Richmond, Virginia?
  • [00:09:47.67] NELLIE TRAPP: Strong memories?
  • [00:09:48.54] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [00:09:49.23] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, yes. I was born in South Carolina. But my mother brought me to Richmond, Virginia when I was seven months old. So I don't really know anything about South Carolina. I only know about Richmond, Virginia.
  • [00:10:10.73] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, how did your family come to live there?
  • [00:10:15.17] NELLIE TRAPP: Cause they moved from South Carolina to Richmond, Virginia.
  • [00:10:20.00] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was your house like?
  • [00:10:22.53] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, the house-- it was a big house. And we didn't have no electricity. And I had to do my homework by oil lamps. And then, later on up in the years-- like eight, nine years old-- we did move to a big house that had electricity.
  • [00:10:43.44] And I remember that, in this house, the high water used to come up. And we had these big French doors. And the high water would come all the way up to the front level.
  • [00:11:00.32] And they would have this boat that would come up to the door and take us, and put us in the boat. And that's how they would get us out of the house to take us to higher ground. That was to go up a little bit higher up, till the water go down. That is one thing I'll never forget, is that high water coming in our house.
  • [00:11:20.48] TALAYAH THORNTON: So where did the high water come from?
  • [00:11:22.80] NELLIE TRAPP: From the river. It was the James River down there. When it would rise, it would-- and we lived a good ways from the river. But the river, it just got so high.
  • [00:11:33.33] And we would live-- we had a basement down in the basement. And it would come up to the first floor. That was one sad moment in my life. [LAUGHS] That was one sad moment that I didn't like, about the high water.
  • [00:11:50.69] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you eventually move from there?
  • [00:11:52.61] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, yes. We moved. I moved. Yes, my mother then moved from Richmond, Virginia. But I moved to New York City. And then, later on, they moved to Detroit, Michigan.
  • [00:12:03.65] TALAYAH THORNTON: How many people lived in the house with you when you were growing up, and what was their relationship to you?
  • [00:12:10.61] NELLIE TRAPP: When I was growing up, the only people lived in my home was my mother and father. And it was six of us living in Richmond, Virginia until later on, about 18 years from my age, my two sisters was born. And then they moved to Richmond-- I mean, to New York-- oh, boy, I'm so excited-- to Detroit, Michigan at very early age, the last two.
  • [00:12:39.48] TALAYAH THORNTON: The six people living in your home were your siblings-- your brothers and sisters?
  • [00:12:43.42] NELLIE TRAPP: They were siblings, my sisters and brothers.
  • [00:12:46.36] TALAYAH THORNTON: So you had six brothers and sisters.
  • [00:12:48.64] NELLIE TRAPP: I have four brothers and four sisters. And it was only two girls and 4 boys living in Richmond, Virginia in this house. Then, later on, all of them had-- we had moved when the last two were born.
  • [00:13:05.76] TALAYAH THORNTON: Where did you move?
  • [00:13:07.27] NELLIE TRAPP: To Detroit, Michigan. Oh, I moved to New York City.
  • [00:13:10.02] TALAYAH THORNTON: But your family moved to Detroit.
  • [00:13:12.07] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes.
  • [00:13:13.95] TALAYAH THORNTON: What languages were spoken in or around your household?
  • [00:13:17.82] NELLIE TRAPP: English.
  • [00:13:18.79] TALAYAH THORNTON: English.
  • [00:13:19.64] NELLIE TRAPP: [LAUGHS]
  • [00:13:20.48] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was your family like when you were a child?
  • [00:13:26.18] NELLIE TRAPP: When I was a child?
  • [00:13:26.96] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [00:13:28.26] NELLIE TRAPP: I remember this when I was a little child-- that I wanted me some red shoes. And I'd wanted these shoes so bad, until my mother went out and got some old shoes that fitted my feet and painted them red. And when I would wear the shoes, they would just crack. The paint would just crack. But that was one thing that I needed.
  • [00:13:52.29] And then she bought us some beautiful big dolls. But I'll never forget-- big dolls. And I liked the white doll. And my sister, she wanted the brown doll.
  • [00:14:09.44] TALAYAH THORNTON: Is there anything else you wanted to add to that?
  • [00:14:12.26] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, it was a lot of good things. And it would take more than one day for to tell how many good things happened in my life.
  • [00:14:24.22] TALAYAH THORNTON: We can take all our time talking about the memories that you have.
  • [00:14:31.76] NELLIE TRAPP: Some of them was real funny. And some of them was real good. Now, the funny ones was about-- I wouldn't want to tell them, because they was involving when we would have to go to church. And different things would happen to the church, and to the minister, and everything. [LAUGHS] So that was all in my young life.
  • [00:14:51.74] But it was true, cause the minister-- oh, I don't want to tell that. He's gone, now, but-- he played around. I'll put it that way, yeah. I can say that. He played, and his wife caught him. That's happened in my young life. And we thought that was the most awful thing in the world-- for the minister of our church.
  • [00:15:16.74] But finally-- and we was young kids, teenagers. But the old members in the church-- they voted him out. He had to be put out.
  • [00:15:29.37] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, what sort of work did your father and mother do?
  • [00:15:32.99] NELLIE TRAPP: My father worked at DuPont in Richmond, Virginia where you make these covers for airplanes when the army broke out. And they had to use the DuPont material for to make airplanes. I believe that's what they said it was. And he worked at DuPont.
  • [00:15:49.79] And my mother, she worked-- sometimes, she was a seamstress. And she used to make all these clothes for different people. And she got this job down at one of the Philip Morris tobacco factory in Richmond, Virginia. And she got a lot of customers from that. And that's how we made a living.
  • [00:16:11.19] TALAYAH THORNTON: What is your earliest memory? Anything you can recall from your earliest time as a young girl growing up?
  • [00:16:21.00] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, boy. I had a sister. I was 18 years her senior. So she was a little girl. And I had to be home to watch her. She was about three years old.
  • [00:16:41.70] And my mom, she would be at work. And Cleo was her name. And she would run away from home, and go around to my grandmother's house, looked like every day. And I would have to go find here.
  • [00:16:52.68] That was one of the memories I'll never forget-- running after her. So I caught the fire. If she wasn't home, I'd get the whooping. Oh, Cleo wouldn't get the whooping. I would get it.
  • [00:17:01.98] And then I had my baby brother. His name was John. He would be so mad at Cleo sometime. And we weren't supposed to fight, cause if we fought, my mother would whip us all.
  • [00:17:16.05] So he did something to Cleo, and I couldn't catch him. And the house was made, you could go round and round, all the way around and over. So he got in one of the corners. And I had-- it was a ball bat on the ground. And I couldn't catch him, so I slung the ball bat. And it popped him in his ear.
  • [00:17:34.02] Wow, and that-- ooh, did I get a whipping. He had to go to the hospital. But that was the only time that I can remember anything ever happening that bad when I was growing up-- that I hit my brother Johnny, cause he shouldn't have been fighting Cleo. But I got a whopping, too.
  • [00:17:59.31] And I didn't do anything too exciting when I was growing up, because my mother was too strict on me. She was strict on me and my sister. Everywhere we go, we had to take the little boy, the little brothers. They was younger than we was. We had to haul them with us everywhere we went, so we couldn't do nothing exciting. We just had to-- [LAUGHS] no. But I enjoyed my childhood. I enjoyed it.
  • [00:18:24.10] And we didn't have no luxury. I do remember that she did buy-- they call it a Victrola, then you wound up. But we got some more money, got a little better off. And we got us one that's electric, one that sat on the floor, that played. Now, oh, we thought that was it. We thought we was rich, then, when we got that record player that sat on the floor.
  • [00:18:48.94] And guess what? We had to heat the house by a stove. The stove-- we had to cook on the stove, and had to put wood in the stove. And one other part-- we had a nice, good-looking, pretty stove. But it was made high-class-- [LAUGHS] high-class, Nellie. It was made not like a stove. It was made like a piece of furniture. But that's what heated the house, too.
  • [00:19:18.06] And oh, we didn't have a bathroom in the house. We had a toilet, but it was connected to the house, but on the outside. We had to go out the door to go to the toilet. It wasn't inside.
  • [00:19:30.51] Girl, and talking about chambermaids-- every room had a-- no. What do you call them? Chamber pot-- is that the name? I just knew we used to call it the bucket-- [LAUGHS] yeah, a bucket in each room. So that's fascinating.
  • [00:19:49.26] We didn't ever use that room. We just used a bucket. And we had to-- you know what you have to do. But that was a good time.
  • [00:19:55.35] Now, everything is so modern until it's not-- it's convenient. And it is better. And it's happy. But I still say that I am happy in my younger life.
  • [00:20:09.60] And you know what? I said the other day, if I could go back to that life-- but make sure it be a toilet inside. I would love it. I wouldn't even have to have the electricity in, cause I just feel like we didn't need it then, I don't need it now. But we got it, so we might as well use it. [LAUGHS]
  • [00:20:39.39] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was a typical day like for you in your preschool year?
  • [00:20:43.35] NELLIE TRAPP: When I-- what?
  • [00:20:44.78] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was a typical day in your life when you began preschool?
  • [00:20:51.06] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, we had to walk a long ways to school, and come home. And my other sister, younger than me, she would-- well, we cooked when we were little kids. My mama didn't-- she did all of this until we got old enough to do it. But she likes to cook, and I like to clean up.
  • [00:21:14.76] And I would always want to clean up the food and do everything before my mama would get home. And I didn't never want her to tell me to do it. I wanted to do it, and then she would love it. And of course, when she would tell me to do it, ooh, I would just be so-- I said, mama, why? I didn't want her to tell me. I wanted to do it first, and then let her tell me. But that was my job, was to clean up the house.
  • [00:21:37.05] And, oh, wash-- I had a washboard, had to wash some clothes on a washboard. [SIGHS] Boy, you got it from-- yep. I didn't get to be this age to be young. See, I guess a lot of people my age-- they were born rich. We wasn't born rich. But I believe, the way I live-- I was rich when I was-- I thought, because I was happy. You know, we was happy.
  • [00:22:05.89] And only thing I could do was I had to go to church all the time, three times on Sunday, and all through the week to the choir. Ooh, we lived mostly, I think, in the church than I did at home. That was my childhood. And I didn't have no boyfriend, because she, momma, didn't want-- oh, shall I say how old I was when I got my last whooping?
  • [00:22:31.21] TALAYAH THORNTON: OK.
  • [00:22:31.70] NELLIE TRAPP: I was 19, because I wasn't in the house by 9 o'clock. And I said, I was sitting in front of the door. She said, I didn't tell you to sit in front of the door. I told you to be in the house.
  • [00:22:43.57] Ooh, ooh, that was the worst in my whole life-- getting a whooping. She'd whoop me for everything-- for laughing in church, for everything. I got so many whippings. That's the reason I-- ooh, ooh, don't hit me now.
  • [00:23:02.70] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you have a favorite toy or a game growing up?
  • [00:23:09.68] NELLIE TRAPP: When we got toys-- like I told you, for Christmas, we got this doll baby. And most other Christmas, we didn't get no toys. We only got apples, and oranges, and a few nuts for many, many, many years. But when she bought us this doll this year, we kept them dolls forever, till we got grown.
  • [00:23:30.31] And right today, I sure wish I knew what happened to my doll, because that's the only doll that we ever got growing up. And they were big dolls. There weren't no little bitty little doll that you put-- so that was--
  • [00:23:43.81] And the boys, if they got a ball-- but we didn't argue. We didn't be mad because we didn't get a lot of toys. And now, today, it's terrible. I know some people that's got kids now, you can't get in their room for the toys. They so [INAUDIBLE]. But that's life.
  • [00:24:11.45] TALAYAH THORNTON: Where there any special days, events, or family traditions you remember from your early childhood years?
  • [00:24:18.23] NELLIE TRAPP: Any family days? Yes. Oh, yes. The church would have picnics. And we would have to have these trucks for a hay ride.
  • [00:24:30.28] They would hire these trucks for a hay ride to take us down to beaches and to different parts of the city. It'd be a lot of people. And we would have to stand up in the truck to be riding. We thought that was much fun.
  • [00:24:48.58] Oh, and the church that I went to-- they didn't have a bathroom in it. [LAUGHS] We had to go to the neighbor's house next door to the bathroom, or else you'd just have to hold it till you got home. But I was still happy.
  • [00:25:08.56] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, we'll talk about your youth. Did you go to preschool?
  • [00:25:15.77] NELLIE TRAPP: Did I go to preschool? Yes. It was at a church. It was in my auntie's church in Richmond, Virginia. Oh, I knew the name in a church now, and it just slipped me. But it was a Methodist Church. She was Methodist, and it was a Methodist Church. But I would, yeah.
  • [00:25:36.06] TALAYAH THORNTON: What do you remember about it-- any funny, happy memories?
  • [00:25:42.58] NELLIE TRAPP: What? About what?
  • [00:25:43.96] TALAYAH THORNTON: About you preschool?
  • [00:25:48.55] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, it was just learning how to do our A B Cs, until I had to start first grade. That was all. It was in the church. The preschool was in this church.
  • [00:26:11.85] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you go to kindergarten?
  • [00:26:13.60] NELLIE TRAPP: No.
  • [00:26:15.60] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you go to elementary school?
  • [00:26:17.44] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, yes.
  • [00:26:18.62] TALAYAH THORNTON: Where?
  • [00:26:19.60] NELLIE TRAPP: In Richmond, Virginia.
  • [00:26:21.95] TALAYAH THORNTON: What do you remember about it? Was it small?
  • [00:26:24.27] NELLIE TRAPP: I remember, in elementary school, I had this girlfriend. And I had real long hair. And we was-- and I don't know what we got in a fight about, but we did. We got in a fight. And we had to go to the office.
  • [00:26:49.26] And we had a principal. And he had a long strap. Ooh, that thing had nine tails to it. And I had to put my foot up on the chair. And I had to beat my own leg. And he was standing there and making me hit it. He said, hit it hard, hit it hard. And I had to beat my own-- I'll never forget that.
  • [00:27:09.70] And when I went home, I got another whipping, cause I wasn't supposed to fight, cause he sent the note home. And my mama whooped me again, after I beat myself. [LAUGHS] I remember that. But me and this girl, we went all the way through school and through high school together as buddies-- friend, yeah.
  • [00:27:31.25] TALAYAH THORNTON: And what was your friend's name?
  • [00:27:33.09] NELLIE TRAPP: Gertrude-- Gertrude Chetam.
  • [00:27:35.54] TALAYAH THORNTON: Do you still speak to her?
  • [00:27:37.38] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, Gertrude must be-- she was in Richmond, Virginia. When I went to New York City, I don't know where she went.
  • [00:27:53.16] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you go to high school?
  • [00:27:54.67] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes, I went to high school. I graduated from Armstrong High.
  • [00:27:58.84] TALAYAH THORNTON: Where was your high school?
  • [00:28:00.79] NELLIE TRAPP: In Richmond, Virginia. I can't remember the street that it was on, but I have pictures and things of it. But I can't-- oh, and guess what? In high school, I can remember, because it was 380-something kids that graduated. And I was elected class beauty for that year. And I didn't vote for myself.
  • [00:28:26.14] There was another girl. Her name was Fannie Mae Corse. I thought she was beautiful, and I voted for her. And I just know she was going to win. But I won, over all of them. I was the-- what you call it-- class beauty that year, at that graduation.
  • [00:28:49.76] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you go to school or career training beyond high school?
  • [00:28:54.98] NELLIE TRAPP: When I went to New York City, I met this fellow in this church. And this was right after I had got this whooping. And when I went to this church, I met him when I walked up to the stage to say-- he gave me a ring. I had just looked at this man, first time I ever met him.
  • [00:29:18.50] And I said, what's that for? He said, cause I'm going to marry you. So I was so excited. And I went home. And I took the ring, and put it in a big trunk that my mother kept all her quilts and nice things in, and hid that ring all the way up under them quilts, cause I didn't want her to go in and be getting the quilt and find that ring. So it went on.
  • [00:29:42.89] I didn't say anything about he said he was going to marry me. He went back to New York City, and they come back again to sing. And that's when he asked my mother and daddy about marrying me. So I took the ring out then, and I showed it to my mama.
  • [00:30:00.19] And that's how I went to New York City-- by meeting this-- da, da, da, da. He was a gospel singer. And that's how I got married. That's how I arrived in New York City.
  • [00:30:14.83] TALAYAH THORNTON: How did your parents react to your marriage?
  • [00:30:17.54] NELLIE TRAPP: My father didn't want me to get married. But my mother should have said, Nellie, don't do it. But they didn't tell us those things. They just-- and they didn't want me to go. But, I guess, I'm 19 years old. And I didn't feel like I was 19, because I was still treated like a child, like I was supposed to be home.
  • [00:30:41.91] And when I went to New York, [LAUGHS] I came right back to Richmond, Virginia, because I wanted to come back home the visit my parents. And I stayed traveling back to Richmond, more than I stayed in New York, because I wasn't ready to be married. I'll put it that way. That's the saddest part of my growing up life then, is when I first got married. I did not like it.
  • [00:31:16.97] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was wrong with your marriage?
  • [00:31:20.15] NELLIE TRAPP: Because I was not ready for sex. The truth is, I wasn't ready. And that was what, I guess, I was supposed to do.
  • [00:31:32.21] And he would ask me. And I'd run up under the bed. And he would pull me from under the bed. And I just didn't-- it was awful. That was the worst part of my whole life.
  • [00:31:46.85] And then it ended up that I had to have an operation, because they said-- the doctor told me-- it would cause cancer if I didn't. So I'll never forget that, as long as I live. So that first marriage, to me, wasn't no marriage. So the doctor told him he would have to give me a divorce, and he did. We did.
  • [00:32:07.46] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you remarry?
  • [00:32:09.40] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes I married. Yes, I married the second time.
  • [00:32:13.38] TALAYAH THORNTON: And what was--
  • [00:32:15.12] NELLIE TRAPP: That's how I had my son.
  • [00:32:16.90] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was your first husband's name?
  • [00:32:18.75] NELLIE TRAPP: Wesley. They going to show this-- somebody going to see all of this?
  • [00:32:25.47] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [00:32:26.75] NELLIE TRAPP: They going to see all of this?
  • [00:32:27.99] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes. [LAUGHS]
  • [00:32:29.36] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, did I say some things. Isn't this funny. Oh, I think we should be funny. I think we should be for real, don't you? I mean, I'm telling you the truth about what happened. So I know I'm going to laugh back if I ever see something like this.
  • [00:32:42.71] TALAYAH THORNTON: [LAUGHS]
  • [00:32:43.43] NELLIE TRAPP: His name was Wesley Hill. He was a singer. He could sing, too.
  • [00:32:49.42] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you play any sports or enjoy any activities outside of school?
  • [00:32:56.86] NELLIE TRAPP: No.
  • [00:33:00.16] TALAYAH THORNTON: What about your school's experience is different from school as you know it today?
  • [00:33:06.40] NELLIE TRAPP: That I had to ride the bus a long ways from home. And nowadays, my kids-- they didn't ride the bus. I took them to school and I'd picked them up, every day, every one of them. And that was my son, plus three that I raised. So that was what's different, is riding at the bus. And the winter, too-- then I had to walk.
  • [00:33:38.99] TALAYAH THORNTON: Can you please describe some popular music during your school years?
  • [00:33:43.41] NELLIE TRAPP: Can I do what?
  • [00:33:44.22] TALAYAH THORNTON: Describe any popular music in your school years.
  • [00:33:48.33] NELLIE TRAPP: The popular school in my mu-- we used to have musical shows. And they used to have two sisters. Oh, right now, the names-- ooh, I know the name. Ooh.
  • [00:34:01.72] TALAYAH THORNTON: Any music that was popular during your time when you were attending school.
  • [00:34:08.12] NELLIE TRAPP: You know what? I wasn't into music when I was attending school. I had never sang in my whole life-- only in our church choir. And then, I would never take a lead. I would always let my sister-- my sister, she would lead.
  • [00:34:25.07] And I would always be in the background. I was always bashful. I never did want to come out and be the lead of singing. So I only started singing when I went to New York City.
  • [00:34:37.52] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you listen to any music when you were there?
  • [00:34:40.37] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, yes. Only gospel music.
  • [00:34:42.56] TALAYAH THORNTON: Only gospel. What were some of the gospel artists you listened to?
  • [00:34:47.24] NELLIE TRAPP: The Golden Quartet, The Dixie Birds, Georgia Peach-- that was when I was growing up. My mother had all those records, those albums.
  • [00:35:00.05] And you know what? My daddy worked the DuPont. And they had big picnics. And they would have the fellows that worked there to bring their family.
  • [00:35:16.50] So I went to one of the picnics. And they had a contest going on for the best singer, or the dancer. So I danced. And I had a first cousin-- he danced. He did the buck dance. He thought he was going to outdo me. But anyway, I won.
  • [00:35:32.31] So when I won, they made movies of it, and I didn't know it. Boy, my daddy went to work one day. And he saw this-- me, up there, dancing. And so when he came home, he said, Nellie. He said, what was you doing up there, wiggling like that, and wiggling, and wiggling all to the floor and everything?
  • [00:35:56.50] I said, well, I won the contest. He said, if I ever catch you dancing again-- he ain't never saw me dance. He said I could never dance again. If me and my brother-- we went to different little affairs fairs in Virginia. He wouldn't have to know it. We would be like little partners.
  • [00:36:13.03] But a man from New York City came. I was 15 years old. And I was still in high school. This gentleman, this agent, from New York City, came down. And he saw this film. So he wanted to know who I was.
  • [00:36:27.99] He came to our house. And he asked my mother and father to let him take me to New York City. Girl, that was the biggest no in the world. You couldn't find a no bigger than that no. That was the biggest no. And I couldn't leave to go to New York City.
  • [00:36:44.39] And nobody never taught me how to dance. Girl, I could wiggle my butt. Oh. [LAUGHS] I mean, I could wiggle. Ooh, I'd wiggle all the way to the floor, and lay all the way back, and then go all the way back up. That was so funny.
  • [00:36:58.82] That was so-- but no, I couldn't go to New York, because they said I was too young, anyway. And he wanted me to graduate. And I'm glad, too.
  • [00:37:11.48] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you have any popular dance moves that were--
  • [00:37:16.76] NELLIE TRAPP: When I went to New York City, and I did some films with different groups up there, like The Three Peppers. and when the break came forth when you were singing-- when the break comes-- the producers, they were saying, dance. I had never danced before. That was the first dance I'd done, was in Richmond, at my daddy's. And then I got frightened about that because he said, don't ever dance again.
  • [00:37:40.23] And they said that. I started wiggling again. And that's that wiggle on that film. They made it. That was nice. And then I did some with The Mill Brothers. I did a soundie. The machine-- you know, you can put your dime in, and you could see them. That was before television ever came out. I made these soundies.
  • [00:38:07.91] TALAYAH THORNTON: What were some of the popular clothing or hairstyles during that time?
  • [00:38:14.15] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, girl, the bouffant. Oh, the bigger your hair, the better you look.
  • [00:38:18.52] TALAYAH THORNTON: [LAUGHS]
  • [00:38:19.25] NELLIE TRAPP: Yeah, it could be so tall in this building. But the bigger the hair-- oh, they was not all long. It wasn't long hair in style at that time. It was just curls, and big bouffants. That was the style.
  • [00:38:37.06] TALAYAH THORNTON: Were there any popular clothing?
  • [00:38:40.82] NELLIE TRAPP: No, just the style it is like today. But back then, we couldn't wear no real short skirts and those little ones that comes all the way up. That wasn't in then, coming up my time. Oh, and pants wasn't in style either. Pants didn't come in until later on. We couldn't wear pants.
  • [00:39:02.98] TALAYAH THORNTON: Can you describe any other fads or styles from the era?
  • [00:39:11.91] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, it wasn't no long style. Like today, the girls is wearing long dresses. In that time, it wasn't no long style. It was medium, short, but never no long. Now, they're wearing long like you're going to a nightclub, or going to a wedding, or something. But that wasn't in style, coming up when I was growing up.
  • [00:39:34.54] My mother and father-- I mean, not my father. My mother, she wore-- I know they got pictures of them in long dresses, never no short dresses. And then style was different than what the style is today, cause I got some clothes that's styling. And I put them on now, and everybody just be crazy about them, but they from way back. And my mother used to make my-- I even got clothes that she made for me now.
  • [00:40:08.91] TALAYAH THORNTON: Were there any slang terms or phrases that were popular during your time?
  • [00:40:14.56] NELLIE TRAPP: Any what?
  • [00:40:15.38] TALAYAH THORNTON: Popular slang phrases or words.
  • [00:40:23.25] NELLIE TRAPP: I know it was. But right now, I couldn't even mention any. You know what? I started to say, Miss Dawkins. Yeah, she knew all them slang things. I mean, she is so great.
  • [00:40:38.52] But me-- she was out and around different people and knew all of them. Me, I was not around all of that. I was so-- I'll put it like protected, yeah.
  • [00:40:59.61] When I'd travel, I had protection, cause I went to private Paris, France. And I had a German-- not a German, a French-- lady that was my companion that was with me every night when I went there, when I went to work, and then I went home. She made me a lot of clothes, too.
  • [00:41:32.92] TALAYAH THORNTON: What was a typical day like for you in this time period?
  • [00:41:37.05] NELLIE TRAPP: In this time period?
  • [00:41:38.01] TALAYAH THORNTON: What's a typical day for you?
  • [00:41:40.31] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, when I was entertaining?
  • [00:41:43.49] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [00:41:45.71] NELLIE TRAPP: To go sing, come home, and rest, and help-- because I lived with my mother for some time, and I would help around the house a lot. And that was the typical day-- not being able to go no place.
  • [00:42:13.08] When I was entertaining, and I had to-- when you entertain, you have to come home and get your rest. You can't hang out all night and all day, and try to go to work, and sing at night, and do a job. You can't do that. I didn't do that. I did my job, and I sang. And I would come home and sleep, get up, and go back.
  • [00:42:38.46] TALAYAH THORNTON: What did you do for fun?
  • [00:42:40.94] NELLIE TRAPP: For fun?
  • [00:42:41.55] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [00:42:42.39] NELLIE TRAPP: Sing. That was my thing. And then I used to travel. But for 20 years straight, I did travel to Las Vegas, to the casino-- for 20 years straight of my life. Now, that was for real. And that was what was my recreation. Yeah, that was what I liked to do. And that's what I did.
  • [00:43:09.00] TALAYAH THORNTON: Were there any special days, events, or family traditions you remember from this time?
  • [00:43:15.17] NELLIE TRAPP: Ooh, we used to have-- well, we had a lot of family reunions.
  • [00:43:20.02] TALAYAH THORNTON: What happened at these family reunions?
  • [00:43:24.47] NELLIE TRAPP: Just meet the family, and lots of food, and lots of fun, and different events that they would have. Oh, that was a good part of my life, too, was these family reunions. But most of the times, I would be out in the city and be traveling that I didn't make a lot of the family reunions.
  • [00:43:47.18] TALAYAH THORNTON: Was there a particular family reunion you were fond of?
  • [00:43:51.77] NELLIE TRAPP: No, all of them. Excuse me, all of them was good. The one that I liked was one the first one. In Detroit here, we had it. I even got a video of the one that we made here. And I sang it at that family reunion. That was the first one.
  • [00:44:11.35] And that's the one that started the family reunion for us to meet in Detroit. That was just in the '80s. And then on from there, they just build, build, build, build, big. I went every place, every city-- New York, South Carolina, Chicago, every place.
  • [00:44:33.71] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did your family have any special sayings or expressions during that time?
  • [00:44:40.69] NELLIE TRAPP: I can't remember. [LAUGHS] I can't remember the expressions. I knew they had a lot of them.
  • [00:44:54.85] TALAYAH THORNTON: Were there any changes in your family life during your school years?
  • [00:44:59.44] NELLIE TRAPP: Was there any changes in my family life during the school years? During the school years, was there any changes? Hmm. You mean, in the family?
  • [00:45:19.38] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [00:45:20.79] NELLIE TRAPP: That my sister, [INAUDIBLE], she got married. And I didn't like that. That was a change in my family, because she was the lead of the choir. And that broke up the choir. It didn't break up the choir, but we just didn't have another leader like her. No, they didn't do anything that were degrading or anything.
  • [00:45:56.69] TALAYAH THORNTON: Were there any special-- which holidays did your family celebrate?
  • [00:46:11.65] NELLIE TRAPP: Which holidays?
  • [00:46:12.16] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [00:46:13.17] NELLIE TRAPP: Wow. They celebrated Mother's Day. That was one. Easter. Oh, you mean, like, dressing up? The family-- oh, yeah, oh. My immediate family?
  • [00:46:25.96] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [00:46:26.68] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, yeah. Oh, we would definitely have the dress up Easter, and Christmas, and Thanksgiving-- oh, and especially the Memorial Day and the 4th of July. Yes, those were some special days-- big picnics, Memorial Day. We would plan picnics for July-- yeah, for the fourth.
  • [00:46:54.24] And then, for Easter and Christmas, we would have beautiful clothes. And for the kids-- this is after I married and had the kids, not when I was growing up, because we didn't have too much when I was growing up as a teenager. I'm talking about this after I got grown.
  • [00:47:19.89] TALAYAH THORNTON: How are your holidays traditionally celebrated in your family?
  • [00:47:24.26] NELLIE TRAPP: How are they?
  • [00:47:25.40] TALAYAH THORNTON: Traditionally celebrated in your family.
  • [00:47:28.31] NELLIE TRAPP: Was they traditionally celebrated?
  • [00:47:30.74] TALAYAH THORNTON: How are they traditionally--
  • [00:47:32.13] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, now?
  • [00:47:32.85] TALAYAH THORNTON: --celebrated?
  • [00:47:33.25] NELLIE TRAPP: Now?
  • [00:47:35.40] TALAYAH THORNTON: I mean, during that time.
  • [00:47:36.73] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh.
  • [00:47:37.11] TALAYAH THORNTON: In your family, when you had holidays, how would you celebrate them?
  • [00:47:41.29] NELLIE TRAPP: We would have special buildings, a place that we would have to go. And everybody would have-- you had to plan. You had to-- do you have special holidays, too?
  • [00:47:56.34] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [00:47:56.75] NELLIE TRAPP: I mean, and for a traditional one, you've got to pay your dues. Everybody had to get involved. And everybody had to do their part to make it a big affair and make it a success. To be successful, everybody had to work-- had to work with it, you know?
  • [00:48:29.90] TALAYAH THORNTON: Have your family created its own traditions or celebrations?
  • [00:48:34.30] NELLIE TRAPP: No.
  • [00:48:37.49] TALAYAH THORNTON: What special food traditions did your family have?
  • [00:48:45.26] NELLIE TRAPP: Greens-- everything. I mean, everything-- greens, and sweet potatoes, and beans. I wasn't no cook. Right today, I do not like to cook. And today, I will not.
  • [00:49:06.94] Don't call me for no affair and say, Nellie, bring a dish, because I don't like it. I'd rather go buy one than to make one. That's how I don't like cooking. They used to have some of everything. Pie-- oh, they used to make their pies, and their cakes, and everything.
  • [00:49:39.31] TALAYAH THORNTON: After you finished high school, where did you live?
  • [00:49:42.68] NELLIE TRAPP: I lived in New York City. After I finished high school--
  • [00:49:46.59] SPEAKER 3: [INAUDIBLE]
  • [00:49:47.98] NELLIE TRAPP: Are you going to finish? Oh.
  • [00:49:50.11] TALAYAH THORNTON: How did you come to live there?
  • [00:49:52.23] NELLIE TRAPP: In New York City? Previously, I told you that that was when I met this gentleman, this gospel singer. And that's how I got to New York City. And I lived in New York City for 13 years.
  • [00:50:06.33] TALAYAH THORNTON: How did you come to live in New York?
  • [00:50:09.03] NELLIE TRAPP: That was when I met this gospel singer. And that's how I got married. And I went to New York City. And I lived there for 13 years.
  • [00:50:19.52] TALAYAH THORNTON: Did you move after that?
  • [00:50:23.80] NELLIE TRAPP: I went to Paris, France and was over there a year and a half. And then, when I came back, I still lived in New York City. And after that, then I had an engagement in Detroit, Michigan. And that's how I got to Detroit. And I've been in Detroit ever since.
  • [00:51:03.60] TALAYAH THORNTON: Do you want us to pause?
  • [00:51:05.08] SPEAKER 3: [INAUDIBLE]
  • [00:51:11.01] TALAYAH THORNTON: Do you want us to pause?
  • [00:51:13.48] SPEAKER 3: No.
  • [00:51:16.94] TALAYAH THORNTON: Say, excuse me.
  • [00:51:19.41] SPEAKER 3: So you're up and ready.
  • [00:51:20.89] TALAYAH THORNTON: OK. Well, this concludes the section with questions about your work and your family. So thank you.
  • [00:51:26.90] NELLIE TRAPP: That's completed?
  • [00:51:27.59] TALAYAH THORNTON: Then there is your home life. Would you like to add anything that you probably were able to mention yesterday, that you would like to add today?
  • [00:51:38.16] NELLIE TRAPP: About my what?
  • [00:51:39.93] TALAYAH THORNTON: About your adulthood, your family life, anything that you can recall from what we talked about earlier-- would you like to mention that today?
  • [00:51:54.92] NELLIE TRAPP: We'll say, about the adult life, or the younger life?
  • [00:51:58.35] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yesterday, we left off on, tell me about your children and what life was like when they were young and living in your house. And we left off on that question. And today, I wanted to know, were there anything else you would like to add to that, that you were unable to?
  • [00:52:16.92] NELLIE TRAPP: Yeah, I'm trying to refresh my memory. What did I say yesterday? Did I get as far as saying [INAUDIBLE] when the kids was going to school?
  • [00:52:25.15] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [00:52:25.43] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, I got that far?
  • [00:52:26.65] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [00:52:27.14] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, well, the only thing I can add to it-- oh, and I had to walk to school [INAUDIBLE], when I was growing up. But they didn't have to walk. I drove them every day, and I picked them up. And they never rode the bus in their whole life until after they all graduated. Then they got their cars. Then I started back singing again.
  • [00:52:59.48] TALAYAH THORNTON: What time was that, when you began singing again?
  • [00:53:03.72] NELLIE TRAPP: I really never stopped because, when my baby was born in the '54, I was singing in Windsor, Canada in 1953 at the [INAUDIBLE]. And I sang up there on and off until 1973. And then I had to go to the hospital and had an operation like that when I went back in the Minors, back in Windsor. And then that club was called the Top Hat. And then, after that, I'd just do a little singing for the hospitals, and for the nursing homes, and for weddings-- not too much weddings, cause I don't like the additional affairs. [LAUGHS]
  • [00:53:51.65] TALAYAH THORNTON: Do you still sing today?
  • [00:53:53.66] NELLIE TRAPP: I can. I will. But I'm not pursuing it like I should, because I'm down at the hospital-- Ford's Hospital-- four days a week, from 10:00 to 3:00, helping with the patients that need clothes to go home with. And that's the reason that I'm not-- I'm interested. I'm still interested in singing, but I'm not pursuing it like I should, cause I've done it many years. I started, like, 1945.
  • [00:54:31.22] TALAYAH THORNTON: When did you begin volunteering at Henry Ford?
  • [00:54:34.19] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, I started that in 2006. I've been there since October of 2006.
  • [00:54:41.08] TALAYAH THORNTON: And you still want today?
  • [00:54:42.70] NELLIE TRAPP: Yes, I'm still. Every day, yes.
  • [00:54:45.34] TALAYAH THORNTON: What are some of the things you do at Henry Ford?
  • [00:54:48.29] NELLIE TRAPP: When a patient don't have clothes to wear home, and when they come to the emergency and just get them cut off, I'm in the clothes department. So I give them the clothes to wear home. And we help the homeless, too. Homeless people come by and need clothes. And so we give them those, too.
  • [00:55:09.52] TALAYAH THORNTON: Is there any other volunteer work that you do outside of Henry Ford?
  • [00:55:15.83] NELLIE TRAPP: At my age, no. I think that's enough for me. You'd think it's easy. But it's not easy, because we have to be on your feet a lot. And trying to please people-- that's a little bit, because they think that we should match up their clothes and everything when they are donated. And some of them come in there and think it's a fine Macy's or [INAUDIBLE]. And it's not that way.
  • [00:55:45.49] So there's a little bit that bothers you. But you have to be polite. And you have to be really, really-- you can't upset them, because they're all ready upset, because they're sick. So we have to keep cool.
  • [00:56:00.67] SPEAKER 3: Pause, please.
  • [00:56:03.57] TALAYAH THORNTON: Now I'm going to begin talking about work and retirement. So in this part of this section, I'll ask questions covering a fairly long period of your life-- from the time you entered the labor force, or started a family, up until the present time. So my first question would be, what was your main field of employment?
  • [00:56:24.07] NELLIE TRAPP: My main field of employment?
  • [00:56:25.54] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [00:56:25.91] NELLIE TRAPP: My main field of employment was entertaining.
  • [00:56:30.70] TALAYAH THORNTON: How did you first get started with this skill, or job?
  • [00:56:35.60] NELLIE TRAPP: When I went to New York city, and I was approached by a gentleman named Fritz Pollard to be in some movies they was making. And I didn't feel that I was-- well, he had a real pretty girl on his arm at that time. And I thought that they was trying to fool me, or get me into something that I didn't understand about.
  • [00:57:02.89] So he gave me his card. And I took his card, and I went to the studio. And that's how I got to make these soundies with the Mill Brothers, the Three Peppers, Una Mae Carlisle, and others. I made some with others, too. But I'd never sang, though. I hadn't got into the singing entertainment.
  • [00:57:23.64] And then I had to do a little dance with the Three Peppers, cause they were singing this song, and they had a break. I had to do this little dance. And the producers of those soundies is the one that introduced me to Mable Horsey. She was a lady that had her office on Broadway at 56, I believe [INAUDIBLE] that Ed Sullivan, Phillip Warren, and all of the big bands was on TV and was giving them-- had those shows. And that's how I started.
  • [00:57:56.22] And then, with the Sailors-- going from Baltimore, New Jersey. We went [INAUDIBLE], and that's how I got started in the entertainment. And then, after that, my first job was in New York City on 56 Street at Kelly Stable in New York City.
  • [00:58:22.86] And the gentleman from Paris, France that this manager of the prize fighter then came over and to fight Jay Lewis. I can't even remember the prize fighter's name right now. But the gentleman that was his manager-- his last name was, Mr. [INAUDIBLE]. And he was part of the night club in Paris, France that had asked me to come to Paris to serve in this icecapade. They had an icecapade.
  • [00:58:52.38] And now, I joined them over in Paris, France in 1947. And that's how I-- then I came back and-- oh, this is a long story. And this is where I just kept entertaining in different clubs from all over. New York City, to Nevada, to Butte, Montana-- all over. All over Windsor-- from Windsor, to Hamilton, London, Toronto. And after that, I started to volunteer at Ford's in my spare time.
  • [00:59:35.92] TALAYAH THORNTON: So what about the entertainment industry made you want to join?
  • [00:59:41.75] NELLIE TRAPP: What? What?
  • [00:59:42.92] TALAYAH THORNTON: What got you interested into singing?
  • [00:59:46.28] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, what got me interested to the singing is that, like I just stated, I was introduced to Miss Horsey. And she became my coach. And she trained me. Then from there, we'd do one thing, and then people, they liked you, then you'd get another job, this place, and you get another job, this place. And then I started liking it, and I did it for-- oh, for so many years. I've worked here at the Flame Show Bar in Detroit, The Twenty Grand, Parker Stage Door down on Woodward.
  • [01:00:21.34] And that's-- and I just was going back and forth. I just didn't go to the Flame one time. I was there many times with different stars that came, and the big stars that came in to look at the Flame Show Bar. And I was-- or they would always-- I would always be on the show.
  • [01:00:40.50] And at the Twenty there was Sam Cooke, Big Eddie, Ruth Washington, Della Reese, all, we known them. The big-- all of the stars that were up, or were, like, from the '60s-- from the '50s to '60s to the '70s, I was with them.
  • [01:01:00.85] TALAYAH THORNTON: Was--
  • [01:01:01.27] NELLIE TRAPP: I mean, The Temptations, they came after me. The Four Tops came after me. The Supremes came after me. I was already there, and then they came. They was-- they didn't start until up in the '60s, but I had already started in the '50s.
  • [01:01:17.92] TALAYAH THORNTON: Was singing always something you wanted to pursue?
  • [01:01:20.81] NELLIE TRAPP: Now, what?
  • [01:01:21.54] TALAYAH THORNTON: Was singing always something you wanted to pursue?
  • [01:01:24.60] NELLIE TRAPP: Not really. Really, I never dreamed that I would ever become an entertainer. I didn't have that-- when I was a little girl growing up, I was happy in my growing-up phase. It's just that big-- and the only-- the happiest part of my young life, that I didn't put-- tell you before was we lived in the city, but we had some cousins that lived in the country. And they had every tree in the world, [INAUDIBLE] tree in-- that you could lay in, and strawberries and blueberries, and everything.
  • [01:01:56.17] And when my mother-- so she was-- we'd go up to the country. Oh, I thought I was going-- I thought I was going to-- well, not heaven, but, I mean, I just thought that was-- I was going-- that was the best thing in the world that happened to me was to travel to the country, to do this.
  • [01:02:12.40] But I never-- when I was growing up, never had it in my mind to sing, and met-- I think mostly I was pushed into singing, and then I really wanted to do it. So when I got into it, then I started loving it. Then I stuck with it.
  • [01:02:31.65] TALAYAH THORNTON: Are you happy singing?
  • [01:02:33.46] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, I sing love songs.
  • [01:02:35.84] TALAYAH THORNTON: No-- are you happy with singing?
  • [01:02:38.28] NELLIE TRAPP: Have what?
  • [01:02:38.94] TALAYAH THORNTON: Are you happy with singing?
  • [01:02:40.21] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, oh, oh, yes. Oh, yes, but now, I caught a cold in March of 2008 and then had something happen to my throat, and now I keep having this little hoarseness. And when I get ready to hit those high notes, I don't feel as comfortable with them, and that's what I'm trying to make it go away, so I can-- when you think about a [INAUDIBLE] singing, "I'll Be Ready"-- you know.
  • [01:03:14.63] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, what--
  • [01:03:15.11] NELLIE TRAPP: And I'll never give it up.
  • [01:03:18.97] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, what technology changes occurred during your working years?
  • [01:03:24.83] NELLIE TRAPP: What technology--
  • [01:03:26.49] TALAYAH THORNTON: Technology changes that occurred during your working years-- when you were singing, what technology change occurred--
  • [01:03:33.51] NELLIE TRAPP: Well--
  • [01:03:33.94] TALAYAH THORNTON: --with you?
  • [01:03:35.24] NELLIE TRAPP: --I-- now the clubs are more integrated. Now they're not segregated like they was when I started. When I started, they didn't want colored to come in-- oh, I'm supposed to say "of color"-- of color to come in to see the shows. And that was the one thing that has changed now, that it's all-- it's not-- you can go into any club if you-- I don't know-- I'm trying to say that, I guess some places now may be segregated.
  • [01:04:15.80] I just don't know about them, you know, so-- because I did come up against that and it was printed in Jet magazine that I went to Reno, Nevada, and they wouldn't let my husband come in where I was singing, but I could sing. But I didn't do the show that night. I walked off the floor and wouldn't do it for a whole week, and they kept begging me to come back.
  • [01:04:47.97] TALAYAH THORNTON: What is the biggest difference in your main field of employment from the time you started until now?
  • [01:04:54.30] NELLIE TRAPP: Until--
  • [01:04:56.17] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [01:04:56.54] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh. Oh, wow. Every show that I did, I tried to do the best. I tried to-- I tried to love every one of them because the older timers that I was with, they were so good, and I wanted to be just as good as they was. And so I loved every minute of-- in the entertainment field.
  • [01:05:19.71] TALAYAH THORNTON: How do you judge excellence within your field?
  • [01:05:23.56] NELLIE TRAPP: Ex--
  • [01:05:24.64] TALAYAH THORNTON: Excellence? How do you judge excellence in your field?
  • [01:05:28.42] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, by-- that's-- excellent. I know to always be on time.
  • [01:05:37.75] SPEAKER 1: [INAUDIBLE] .
  • [01:05:41.42] TALAYAH THORNTON: What makes someone respected in that field?
  • [01:05:45.29] NELLIE TRAPP: What makes what?
  • [01:05:46.18] SPEAKER 2: Increase [INAUDIBLE].
  • [01:05:47.12] TALAYAH THORNTON: Someone respected in that field?
  • [01:05:49.75] NELLIE TRAPP: What makes someone respected?
  • [01:05:52.33] TALAYAH THORNTON: What makes someone respected in that field, like, in respect to your-- in your field?
  • [01:05:57.84] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, it's to never-- well, I-- well, me, I didn't smoke. I didn't drink at that time, and I said to always get a lot of rest and not try to do all-day and all-night work, too, because it-- you can't do that. And to live at, kind of, of the age I am now, I must have been doing something right because I didn't break. I didn't-- I'm not tripping yet.
  • [01:06:23.54] [LAUGHTER]
  • [01:06:25.45] And I must have been doing something right by not doing those things, and so.
  • [01:06:34.96] TALAYAH THORNTON: What makes you value most about what you did for a living?
  • [01:06:39.10] NELLIE TRAPP: What do I value most about?
  • [01:06:40.62] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [01:06:42.40] NELLIE TRAPP: About living?
  • [01:06:43.62] TALAYAH THORNTON: What do you value the most about what you were doing for a living? Or what make-- what did you value about the entertainment industry that you participate in?
  • [01:06:56.56] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, I loved to sing, making the people happy, and I loved just-- in the entertainment, if anybody that today were to pursue being in the entertainment field, that was really the most happiest and best fields that you could accomplish. If you was going to be good and be-- and look at a serious job, don't take it for a play thing, because entertainers, that's hard work. That's hard to do.
  • [01:07:27.38] You've got to be able to take care of your health and body first before you can-- and first, you got to love yourself, too. If you love yourself, you're going to love the audience and love what you do. But you got to love yourself first.
  • [01:07:40.16] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mhm.
  • [01:07:41.15] SPEAKER 2: No touching anything.
  • [01:07:44.12] TALAYAH THORNTON: Tell me about any moves you made during your working years and retirement before your decision to move to your current residence?
  • [01:07:52.11] NELLIE TRAPP: About what?
  • [01:07:54.08] TALAYAH THORNTON: Tell me about any moves you made during your working years and retirement before you decided to move to your current residence.
  • [01:08:03.89] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, I was living with my mother, and I met this gentleman, got married, moved into his home--
  • [01:08:13.95] [SIDE CONVERSATION]
  • [01:08:15.45] NELLIE TRAPP: --and--
  • [01:08:16.65] [SIDE CONVERSATION]
  • [01:08:18.58] NELLIE TRAPP: --you know what this-- that's a question says too much. I mean, it's--
  • [01:08:24.24] TALAYAH THORNTON: Tell me about any moves you may have made while you were working?
  • [01:08:29.04] NELLIE TRAPP: What kind of moves?
  • [01:08:31.27] TALAYAH THORNTON: Like--
  • [01:08:32.09] NELLIE TRAPP: Moving's hard for anyone's to do it. [LAUGHS]
  • [01:08:35.85] TALAYAH THORNTON: Moves-- any move-- any changes you did your working years.
  • [01:08:40.17] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, during my working years, I lived--
  • [01:08:42.22] TALAYAH THORNTON: That changed the style of music you may have sung, like going from jazz to R&B, or--
  • [01:08:48.96] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, I didn't leave-- I just kept the same-- well, I was mostly, like, on the country deal. I love country music. And I was-- and I never changed from my style to go to no other style at all.
  • [01:09:02.16] TALAYAH THORNTON: How did you come to live in your current residence?
  • [01:09:04.90] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, my sister, Barbara, she lived on Orangelawn, and I was living on Glendale. And she had this home next to her, and she called and wanted me to live with her. And I moved over there in 2006, and until now, and where I am now, and she passed in 2007.
  • [01:09:29.18] And that was really the worst, and still is one of the-- because every day, I can look out my window and look at her house, and I still want to see her there. And that's one of the-- that's one of the most awful part of my life, but I've got to keep going. And I just looked, and-- but she used to cry all the time because she lost her husband. And I can see her sitting on the porch, but I'm still there.
  • [01:09:57.93] TALAYAH THORNTON: How do you feel about your current living situation?
  • [01:10:00.84] NELLIE TRAPP: How do I feel? Well--
  • [01:10:03.39] SPEAKER 1: Say anything you want me to hear.
  • [01:10:05.82] NELLIE TRAPP: --I'm happy because-- look, I'd like to say I'm happy, but satisfied with-- and, as long as I've been here, I'm happy. It's not the biggest house in the city, but I'm happy. It's a little house, and me and my son, we're still together. And when my nephew-- both nephew comes in-- he drives the big rig, so when he come in, he stays there also. So it's a happy-- it's happy just to have the little house.
  • [01:10:38.99] TALAYAH THORNTON: Huh. How has your life changed since your spouse passed away?
  • [01:10:45.69] NELLIE TRAPP: How is it-- oh, my life has changed by me not staying at home, sitting down, crying every day, and getting myself up, and going down to the hospital, and meeting different people every day. And every day, meeting a different person, and they've got different stories. And I just could-- oh, and I love to go to the casino.
  • [01:11:09.75] [LAUGHTER]
  • [01:11:11.03] Yes, I do. So that's my-- and that's my-- what I do. I go down to the hospital, and I love it.
  • [01:11:20.93] TALAYAH THORNTON: What is typical day in your life currently?
  • [01:11:24.18] NELLIE TRAPP: What is a typical day? Getting up, going to the hospital, coming home, fix me something to eat, but really don't go to bed that early. I like to look at the news about 10:00 and the 11 o'clock news. And I'm not a bed person. I don't-- I'll sit up and watch that. I don't be laying down watching it.
  • [01:11:51.87] TALAYAH THORNTON: What are your personal favorite things to do for fun?
  • [01:11:55.76] NELLIE TRAPP: Go to the casino. Oh, another thing-- I love to work outside. Oh, I love to pull weeds, and I love to cut down the trees. Oh, I have a saw. Oh, I love to do all of that. And that is what-- that is the two things that I will do, is work in the yard and go to the casino.
  • [01:12:17.55] TALAYAH THORNTON: Are there any special days, events, or family tradition you especially enjoy at this time in your life?
  • [01:12:24.94] NELLIE TRAPP: Is there any special days?
  • [01:12:26.52] TALAYAH THORNTON: Yes.
  • [01:12:28.56] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, every day, I try to make it special because I don't know how much time that I'm going to be here. So every day, I try to make my days special and try to do something that's going to make me happy because I live here, and I'm 88, so I might as well enjoy every day and every little thing that I possibly can.
  • [01:12:55.22] [SIDE CONVERSATION]
  • [01:12:57.95] TALAYAH THORNTON: When thinking-- your life after-- when thinking about your life after retirement, or your kids leaving home, to the present, what important social or historical events were taking place, and how did they personally affect you and your family?
  • [01:13:15.26] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, I've-- that's sad when it's-- if one of your kids leaves home and-- but it's keeping-- calling on the phone, or talking and keeping into contact, that keeps you going like that. But it's not the same as when you're raising a child, and it's sad when they're-- when you're still not together.
  • [01:13:40.99] And I feel that families always want their kids when they-- till 18 years old. And just getting out of high school, they want them to rush right out and get a job and move. And they're not educated-- they're not-- they're educated-- might have the education from school, books and things, but not that street-- and I don't feel good about parents running kids away from home. And if you have a family of 11 people or 50 people, and look a little and run home and be happy. I wouldn't care if you got to be 90 years old-- well, I was [INAUDIBLE].
  • [01:14:17.32] TALAYAH THORNTON: When thinking back or your entire life, what important social, historical event had the greatest impact?
  • [01:14:26.16] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, it was so many. It was so many. Well, like today, sitting in this here Charles Wright Museum, this is one of the excitements, or exciting things in my life, and here I got to be in this thing. This is so exciting for me to be here because I believe-- knowing about this, or that everyone can call me.
  • [01:14:50.82] And when I talk to Miss Johnson-- she's-- works here at the Wright's-- but-- and so many things to see. It's so beautiful, I say. I didn't-- this is really the most exciting things in my life is being here at Wright's Museum.
  • [01:15:08.60] TALAYAH THORNTON: What family heirlooms or keepsakes do you possess?
  • [01:15:12.91] NELLIE TRAPP: My-- I have an uncle. His name was [INAUDIBLE]. That was my daddy's brother, and he gave me a $5 gold piece, and that was in 19-- whoo, 40-something. And I still have that $5 gold piece.
  • [01:15:37.00] TALAYAH THORNTON: What do you value most about it?
  • [01:15:39.66] NELLIE TRAPP: About the $5 gold piece?
  • [01:15:40.90] TALAYAH THORNTON: Mm-hmm.
  • [01:15:42.50] NELLIE TRAPP: I just keep it in the box. I just keep it because he gave it to me.
  • [01:15:49.87] TALAYAH THORNTON: Thinking back over your entire life, what are you most proud of?
  • [01:15:55.13] NELLIE TRAPP: Richmond, Virginia. That's where I was raised at, and there was [INAUDIBLE] that's-- is I didn't have too much really. And my life didn't start getting better and growing-- I mean, it was a happy life. And when I moved to New York City, that's when I really started-- I guess because I was growing up. But when I was a kid growing up, I was happy when we didn't have much, but-- and it was-- and I used to scrub the steps, and, I mean, that's a long story. I mean, that's another story. I was happy growing up.
  • [01:16:36.03] SPEAKER 1: What do think [INAUDIBLE]?
  • [01:16:37.51] TALAYAH THORNTON: What would you say has changed most from the time you were my age until now?
  • [01:16:43.49] NELLIE TRAPP: What has changed?
  • [01:16:45.08] TALAYAH THORNTON: Since you were [INAUDIBLE]?
  • [01:16:46.35] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh. The cars, the food, the clothes-- especially the cars. Cars have really changed from-- because we had a little T-Model Ford. And now-- and today, I guess, to find out a T-Model Ford at this time and age, that would be a classic, baby. They would think I was rich if I had something like that. But I don't, so I'm talking about, this was when we was-- when I was a kid growing up.
  • [01:17:15.34] But that the street is not as safe as they were. When I was growing up, you could leave your door open You could go next door to people, and you could visit the people, and you could walk the street. Now, that has changed so bad, it's just-- it's insane. It's just [INAUDIBLE]. It's [INAUDIBLE]. That has changed a lot. It's changed from the-- so much crime that I didn't have when I was growing up.
  • [01:17:51.20] TALAYAH THORNTON: What advice would you give to the younger generation today?
  • [01:17:55.14] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, the best advise I would give to the generation today would be, try to be their own self, and don't let another person tell you what to do and try to lead you. You be the leader. I don't care if you've got four leaders-- you be one of them. If you've got-- and you're not a-- don't ever try to follow what nobody says. Don't-- and listen to what you in your self-talk say to you.
  • [01:18:21.20] Don't listen to what other kids going to say, and don't join-- if you're going to join a group, don't let it be a gang. Let it be something that's going to benefit you. Oh, and about these, the clothing, the way the boys wear their pants down too low and show their underwear. I don't see the girls doing that, but they-- the girls do wear some short skirts now. They wear some really short. But I didn't do that. Oh, my daddy would've killed me if he saw something short, and you couldn't wear lipstick.
  • [01:18:57.07] So nowadays, it's the young kids, and I think they don't care what they should do, just to not-- and do. And if-- don't play-- don't have guns, or-- oh, I couldn't tell-- if the parents-- and I don't think that the problem is with the kids to do this, but the parents is not taking enough time with the kids and not doing a lot of things with their life, none of them. And then, they would take us to be-- they would take us to-- but the-- nowadays, the parents has got to work to make a living, and that's another thing that has changed.
  • [01:19:38.66] When I was growing up, I had to stay home and even still take care of the kids, and the husband went out and did the work. Nowadays, both of the parents got to work, and so the children, they're busy all by themselves. They don't have nobody at home, and now they [INAUDIBLE] but like I said, pick them up from school every day and [INAUDIBLE] and took them to school.
  • [01:19:59.13] Lots of kids today have to-- their parents can't do that because they got to work. And that's the reason we've got so much crime going on, and the kids is just-- don't have nothing to do. But first of all, if they would stop, like I said, be their own leader, and love themself, and be-- don't let nobody tell you what to do if you-- you do it your own way. You do it yourself. Don't let nobody tell you what to do, or lead you to do it.
  • [01:20:27.48] I don't-- nobody's never told-- I never got into anything like that, to follow them. I'd let a a few of them to go to the store, and [INAUDIBLE] to go to the store. We didn't want to go to a store, and then trying to make you-- that's going to be a lot of pain for you, to let them make you because they were nervous not to be good. So just stand up for yourself and say, well, I'm not going to do it. So just, the kids just have to be able to stand up for their-- stand up for themself.
  • [01:20:56.47] TALAYAH THORNTON: Is there anything you would like to add that I haven't asked you about?
  • [01:21:01.09] NELLIE TRAPP: Don't smoke. I don't-- nobody should smoke, and especially-- I never smoked in my life. And I'm 88 years old, and James Brown say, whoa! I feel good.
  • [01:21:16.56] TALAYAH THORNTON: Then this completes the last section of questions, so if there would be anything you would like to add to it, and you want--
  • [01:21:23.54] NELLIE TRAPP: What I would like to add, I've said it-- appreciate and love to have me with John and Aaliyah--
  • [01:21:30.96] TALAYAH THORNTON: Talayah.
  • [01:21:31.34] NELLIE TRAPP: --Taliyah--
  • [01:21:32.53] TALAYAH THORNTON: Talayah.
  • [01:21:33.47] NELLIE TRAPP: Talayah? Oh, Talayah. Oh, see, there's-- see, another way, another thing, they give these kids these-- they use fancy names. My mama gave me Nellie. She gave my sister Willette. OK, she gave me the name of Bob, but that was supposed to-- no, really. So nowadays, they got all these fancy names.
  • [01:21:52.52] TALAYAH THORNTON: Well, thank you for your time, and this concludes our interview.
  • [01:21:56.99] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, part 2. Whoa, boy.
  • [01:22:00.16] TALAYAH THORNTON: [INAUDIBLE]
  • [01:22:01.01] NELLIE TRAPP: The camera on?
  • [01:22:01.90] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Yep.
  • [01:22:03.06] NELLIE TRAPP: Ooh, don't let me be making-- or tell me.
  • [01:22:06.39] JOHNNY JOHNSON: We're rolling.
  • [01:22:07.83] NELLIE TRAPP: For real?
  • [01:22:08.59] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Yep.
  • [01:22:10.14] NELLIE TRAPP: And I'm sitting with you looking like a dummy.
  • [01:22:11.80] JOHNNY JOHNSON: No, you're looking great.
  • [01:22:14.65] NELLIE TRAPP: No. [LAUGHS] Well, don't you want me to say something, just sitting up here?
  • [01:22:17.46] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Yeah, yeah, and yeah. Now tell-- why don't you tell us a little bit about that photo that you have there, that you're showing us?
  • [01:22:23.43] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, this--
  • [01:22:24.09] SPEAKER 1: Yeah, just show it to the camera.
  • [01:22:25.82] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Just show it to the camera-- yeah, and tell us a little about it--
  • [01:22:28.02] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, this--
  • [01:22:28.58] JOHNNY JOHNSON: --and-- yeah. And let me get a shot of it, and I'll tell you when.
  • [01:22:34.51] SPEAKER 1: [INAUDIBLE]
  • [01:22:35.44] JOHNNY JOHNSON: OK. And why don't you tell us a little something about it?
  • [01:22:37.79] NELLIE TRAPP: This picture here was--
  • [01:22:39.50] [SIDE CONVERSATION]
  • [01:22:40.31] NELLIE TRAPP: --the picture that was on Broadway, when I was in the Broadway show with the actress Lily and Jack Haley called Inside U.S.A. This one is my first evening gown professional, when I was--
  • [01:22:54.29] [SIDE CONVERSATION]
  • [01:22:55.44] NELLIE TRAPP: Became professional. Was it good? This one, when I was singing in Paris, France--
  • [01:23:03.95] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Slowly.
  • [01:23:04.89] NELLIE TRAPP: --walking the floor with "Cheatin' Heart." [GIGGLES] This one was at the [INAUDIBLE] Tavern in Winslow, Canada. This one was at The Top Hat in Winslow, Canada. This one, I'm singing, "Bella [INAUDIBLE]" in Winslow, Canada-- all over Canada for this one-- London, Hamilton, Toronto. Oh, I've got it upside-down.
  • [01:23:35.24] JOHNNY JOHNSON: You have a good shot of that.
  • [01:23:37.47] NELLIE TRAPP: Am I going too fast? Oh, good.
  • [01:23:40.07] SPEAKER 1: We can click it back now.
  • [01:23:41.48] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh, this one is "Skin Tight Jeans."
  • [01:23:45.20] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Hold that one up for a while. That looks good.
  • [01:23:49.05] [SIDE CONVERSATION]
  • [01:23:51.47] NELLIE TRAPP: Hi, now.
  • [01:23:53.59] SPEAKER 1: Anything else?
  • [01:23:56.37] NELLIE TRAPP: To--
  • [01:23:56.82] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Yeah, have anything else there that you want to show us?
  • [01:24:01.65] NELLIE TRAPP: Well, Talayah, she's got all my information about when I started singing with-- for the soldiers and sailors. And then I went to New York. I moved to Paris, France. I made some movies. I got a-- it was called Murder By Music. First, it was called Mistaken Identity. Then they changed it to Murder By Music. And I made some records, and that-- [LAUGHS]
  • [01:24:31.69] JOHNNY JOHNSON: Very good. That's great.
  • [01:24:32.73] SPEAKER 1: OK.
  • [01:24:34.05] NELLIE TRAPP: Oh.
  • [01:24:35.36] SPEAKER 1: And we'll be able to get those-- when we're doing scanning, we'll be able to--