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Katie Rye

From: Arkansas

Interviewer: Miss Sallie C. Miller
Person interviewed: Katie Rye, Clarksville, Arkansas
Age: 82

"We lived in Greenbrier, Faulkner County, Arkansas. All stayed at home
and got along very well. We had enough to eat and wear. Mistress was
awful mean to us but we stayed with them until after the war. After the
war master moved us off to another place he had and my father farmed for
his self, master and his pa and ma, and mistress' pa and ma. They awful
good to us, but mistress was so high tempered she would get mad and whip
some of the slaves but she never whipped any of us. She worried so over
the loss of her slaves after the war she went crazy. We had two white
grand pas and grand mas. We colored children called them grandpa and ma
and uncle and aunt like the white children did and we didn't know
the difference. The slaves was only allowed biscuit on Christmas and
sometimes on Sundays but we had beef and plenty of honey and everything
after we moved from the big house. Mistress used to come down to see
us an' my mother would cook dinner for her and master. He was such a
good man and the best doctor in the State. He would come in and
take the babies up (mother had nine children) and get them to sleep for
my mother. His mother would come to the kitchen and ask for a good cup
of coffee and mother would make it for her. The master and his family
were Northern people and my mother was given to the mistress by her
father and mother when she married.

"After my father bought his own farm about ten miles from the big house,
father would put us all in an ox wagon and take us back to see our white

"The mistress claimed to be a Christian and church member but I don't
see how she could have been she was so mean.

"I think the present day generation mighty wicked. Seems like they get
worse instead of better, even the members of the church are not as good
as they used to be. They don't raise the children like they used to.
They used to go to Sunday School and church and take the children, now
the children do as they please, roam the streets. It is sad to see how
the parents are raising the children, just feed them and let them go.
The children rule the parents now.

"We sang the old hymns and 'Dixie', 'Carry Me Back to Old Virginia',
'When You and I Were Young, Maggie'."

Next: Bob Samuels

Previous: Henry Russell

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