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Oral Histories

The SFA oral history program documents life stories from the American South. Collecting these stories, we honor the people whose labor defines the region. If you would like to contribute to SFA’s oral history collections, please send your ideas for oral history along with your CV or Resume and a portfolio of prior oral history work to

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Joe Larson

Joe Larson, born in 1956, was raised in Peekskill, New York. In 1971, Larson’s family moved to New York City. Larson’s initial foray into a career in food and beverage began with a summer job as a dishwasher at Bonanza, a steakhouse chain restaurant. While attending college at Georgia State University, Larson worked as a server at Steak and Ale, picking up lunch and dinner shifts in between classes. After graduating with a degree in studio arts from Georgia State, he continued to wait tables.

A friend encouraged him to apply for a job at Bone’s Steakhouse and in 1986, Larson became a waiter’s assistant then eventually a waiter. Larson has also worked as the downstairs bartender. Larson enjoys the flexibility and variety that the service industry affords him. He thinks a lot about the way he likes to be treated when serving his guests.

Date of interview:

Annemarie Anderson

Henri Hollis

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The Southern Foodways Alliance drives a more progressive future by leading conversations that challenge existing constructs, shape perspectives, and foster meaningful discussions. We reconsider the past with research, scrutiny, and documentation.


Alex Raij Txikito

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