Julia Cowans recalls her childhood growing up in a small coal mining town in Bell County, Kentucky. She recounts her experiences while attending an all black grade school and growing up in a town that was comprised of two sections: black and white. Cowans describes how she later married and moved to Harlan County where she still encountered segregation. It was during this time that Cowans became heavily involved with the NAACP, and joined her husband in setting up a junior NAACP that attracted many young black people. Cowans also describes the atmosphere and events surrounding the integration of schools in Harlan County.