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Mike Genes

From: More Arkansas

JAN 14 1938
Interviewer: Miss Irene Robertson
Person interviewed: Mike Genes
Holly Grove, Ark.
Age: 72

"I heard folks talk is all I know bout slavery. I was born in Arkansas.
My mother was Sara Jane Whitley. My father was Genes. My mother
came here from Tennessee wid Henderson Sanders. I was raised on the
Duncan place. My mother raised us a heap like old times. I got fire
tongs now she had. She made ash cakes and we had plenty milk. I got her
old pot hooks too. She cooked cracklin' bread in the winter and black
walnut bread the same way. We made palings and boards for the houses and
barns. Jes gradually we gittin' away from all that. Times is changing so

"I heard 'em say in slavery they got 'em up fore day and they worked all
day. Some didn't have much clothes. I can remember three men twisting
plow lines. They made plow lines.

"I vote if I have a chance, but I really don't care bout it. I don't
know how to keep up to vote like it ought to be.

"This young generation may change but if they don't they air a knock
out. They do jes anyway and everyway. They don't save and cain't save it
look like, way we got things now. Folks don't raise nothin' and have to
buy so much livin' is hard. Folks all doin fine long as the cotton is to
pick. This is two reconstructions I been through. Folks got used to
work after that other one and I guess they have to get used to work
this time till it get better. I don't know what causes this spell of
hard times after the wars."

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