Interview with Joe and Nadine Rutrough
October 28, 1999
Joe Rutrough was born in the Willis area of Floyd County in 1923 and grew up there with his parents and two brothers. The Rutroughs have been in Floyd for at least four generations. Mr. Rutrough’s father, Dr. Rutrough, graduated from Baltimore City College and went to post-graduate school at John Hopkins University, he returned to Roanoke around 1910 and worked as a general practitioner for fifty-two years. During this time, Dr. Rutrough worked as his own pharmacist taking care of his community during epidemics. In his early career Dr. Rutrough personally visited his patients’ homes on horseback, much later he bought a Model-T to use for his commute to different homes. Dr. Rutrough had no set office hours; people visited him at any time, especially during epidemics like measles and diphtheria. Since many of his patients lacked money, they often paid him in food goods. Sometimes Mr. Rutrough’s father would bring Joe along when he saw patients, and on the way back, they would stop to fish. The Rutrough family also gardened and canned relying on their own practices for regular meals. Mr. Rutrough says that many members of the oldest Floyd families he used to know are gone now, but his neighbors are still friendly and he enjoys living in Floyd. Mr. Rutrough and his wife, Nadine, have been married for fifty years with daughters that have also attended universities. Mr. and Mrs. Rutrough also share their daughters experience at Radford College (before it became a university) and how they managed to get her through her schooling.
Josh Klemmer, Anna Marie Meador, Kathleen Ingoldsby, “Interview with Joe and Nadine Rutrough,” Floyd Folklife Gallery and Archives, accessed January 20, 2021, https://floydvafolklife.org/items/show/9.
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