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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

< Back to Oral History project: North Carolina BBQ


Larry Pierce & Brandon Pierce

Bacon, sausages, and country cured hams. Souse, chitterlings, and hogs’ heads. Buckets and buckets of lard. Nahunta Pork Center, located outside rural Pikeville, uses “everything but the hair” and claims the title of “America’s largest pork display.” Mack Pierce opened the retail business in 1975, after decades of buying and slaughtering pigs for local farmers and grocers. The Pork Center still custom slaughters for both pig-growers and their own all-pork market, which features forty different fresh cuts of meat. Mr. Pierce’s son and grandson, Larry and Brandon, now oversee the processing of up to 150 hogs a day. Nahunta also provides whole hogs to pit-cooked barbecue landmarks Wilber’s in Goldsboro and Chapel Hill’s Allen & Son. By staying the course while negotiating constantly evolving consumer tastes, federal regulations, and global markets, the Pierces of Nahunta’s pork emporium remain North Carolina’s Pork Kings.

Date of interview:
2011-12-06 00:00

Rien T. Fertel

Denny Culbert

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