Adeline Rose Lennox

Albert Strope, Field Worker

Federal Writers' Project

St. Joseph County--District #1

Mishawaka, Indiana


1400 South Sixth Street, Elkhart, Indiana

Adeline Rose Lennox was born of slave parents at Middle--sometimes known

as Paris--Tennessee, October 25, 1849. She lived with her parents in

slave quarters on the plantation of a Mr. Rose for whom her parents

worked. These quarters were log houses, a distance from the master's


At the age of seven years, Adeline was taken from her parents to work at

the home of a son of Mr. Rose who had recently been married. She

remembers well being taken away, for she said she cried, but her new

mistress said she was going to have a new home so she had to go with


At the age of fourteen years she did the work of a man in the field,

driving a team, plowing, harrowing and seeding. "We all thought a great

deal of Mr. Rose," said Mrs. Lennox, "for he was good to us." She said

that they were well fed, having plenty of corn, peas, beans, and pork to

eat, more pork then than now.

As Adeline Rose, the subject of this sketch was married to Mr. Steward,

after she was given her freedom at the close of the Civil War. At this

time she was living with her parents who stayed with Mr. Rose for about

five years after the war. To the Steward family was born one son,

Johnny. Mr. Steward died early in life, and his widow married a second

time, this time [HW: to] one George Lennox whose name she now bears.

Johnny married young and died young, leaving her alone in the world with

the exception of her daughter-in-law. After her second husband's death,

she remained near Middle, Tennessee, until 1924, when she removed to

Elkhart to spend the remainder of her life living with her

daughter-in-law, who had remarried and is now living at 1400 South Sixth

Street, Elkhart, Indiana.

In the neighborhood she is known only as "Granny." While I was having

this interview, a colored lady passed and this conversation followed:

"Good morning Granny, how are you this morning?"

"Only tolerable, thank you," replied Granny.

The health of Mrs. Lennox has been failing for the past three years but

she gets around quite well for a lady who will be eight-eight years old

the twenty-fifth day of this October. She gets an old age pension of

about thirteen dollars per month.

A peculiar thing about Mrs. Lennox's life is that she says that she

never knew that she was a slave until she was set free. Her mistress

then told her that she was free and could go back to her father's home

which she did rather reluctantly.

Mrs. Lennox smokes, enjoys corn bread and boiled potatoes as food, but

does not enjoy automobiles as "they are too bumpy and they gather too

much air," she says. "I do not eat sweets," she remarks "my one ambition

in life is to live so that I may claim Heaven as my home when I die."

There is a newspaper picture in the office along with an article

published by the Elkhart Truth. This is being sent to Indianapolis


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