Dora Richard

Interviewer: Mrs. Bernice Bowden

Person interviewed: Dora Richard

3301 W. 14th Avenue, Pine Bluff, Arkansas

Age: 76

"I was born in South Carolina and I was my mother's baby chile.

"Jacob Foster was our old master and he sold my mother over in east

Tennessee. Now of cose she wasn't put upon the block and sold. She was

the house woman and spin and wove. After they sold her my father run

off. Oh sure, they caught him and I know old mistress said, 'Now, Jacob,

if you want to go where Lydia is, you can go.' So they sold him near


"I stayed with the Fosters till peace was declared and ever'thing was

declared free. Then my father come after me.

"I can just sketch things. I try to forget it. My mother and father was

pretty agreeable when they was set free.

"In Tennessee we stayed at the foot of Lookout Mountain and I can

remember seein' the cannon balls.

"Here's the way I want to tell you. Some of the white people are as good

to the colored people as they could be and some of em are mean. My own

folks do so bad I'm ashamed of em.

"So many of the colored of the South have emigrated to the North. I have

lived there and I don't know why I'm here now.

"Some of my color don't like that about the Jim Crow Law, but I say if

they furnish us a nice comfortable coach I would rather be with my own

people. And I don't care to go to the white folks' church.

"My mother used to tell me how they used to hide behind trees so the

boss man couldn't see em when they was prayin' and at night put out the

light and turn the pot down.

"I went to school in Tennessee. I never will forget it. I had a white

teacher. He was in the War and he had a leg shot off. I went through the

sixth grade and was ready for the seventh Ray's Arithmetic. I walked

four miles there and four miles back--eight miles a day.

"I can remember too when my mother and father was baptized. I know mama

come out of the water a shoutin'. Oh, that was good times then. I felt

better when I was under my mother cause when I married my life was over.

I raised about ten children.

"I remember when the Ku Klux come to my sister's house lookin' for her

husband. I know I was in the bed and I raised up. I was scared you know.

"When I hear some colored folks say they wish the old slavery times was

back, I just knows they is lazy. They don't want any responsibility."

Dora Jerman Dora Roberts facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail