Cora Scroggins

Interviewer: Miss Irene Robertson

Person interviewed: Cora Scroggins, Clarendon, Arkansas

Age: 48 or 50

"My mother was born in Spring Hill, Tennessee and brought to Arkansas by

her master. Her name was Margaret. Dr. and Mrs. Porter brought my mother

to Batesville, Arkansas when she was eight years old and raised her. She

was very light. She had long straight hair but was mixed with white. She

never knew much about her parents or people.

"Mr. William Brook (white) came to De Valls Bluff from Tennessee and

brought her sister soon after the War. She was a very black woman.

"Dr. Porter had a family. One of their daughters was Mrs. Mattie Long,

another Mrs. Willie Bowens. There were others. They were all fine to my

mother. She married in Dr. Porter's home. Mrs. Porter had learnt her to

sew. My father was a mechanic. My mother sewed for both black and white.

She was a fine dressmaker. She had eight children and raised six of us

up grown.

"My father was a tall rawbony brown man. His mother was an Indian squaw.

She lived to be one hundred seven years old. She lived about with her

children. The white folks all called her 'Aunt Matildy' Tucker. She was

a small woman, long hair and high cheek bones. She wore a shawl big as a

sheet purty nigh all time and smoked a pipe. I was born in Batesville.

"My mother spoke of her one long journey on the steamboat and

stagecoach. That was when she was brought to Arkansas. It made a

memorable picture in her mind.

"Dr. and Mrs. Porter told her she was free and she could go or stay. And

she had nowheres to go and she had always lived with them white folks.

She never did like black folks' ways and she raised us near like she was

raised as she could.

"She used to tell us how funny they dressed and how they rode at night

all through the country. She seen them and she could name men acted as

Ku Kluxes but they never bothered her and she wasn't afraid of them.

"I cooked all my life till I got disabled. I never had a child. I wish I

had a girl. I've been considered a fine cook all of my life."

Cora L Horton Cordelia Thomas facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail