El Dorado Division Interviewed By Pernella Anderson

Interviewer: Pernella Anderson, colored.

El Dorado Division

Federal Writers' Project

Union County. Arkansas


"I was born in the Junction city community and belonged to the Cooks. I

was ten years old at surrender. Mother and father had 12 children and we

lived in a one room log cabin and cooked on a fireplace and oven. Mos

and Miss Cook did not allow ma and pa to whip me. When ever I do

something and I knew I was going to get a whipping I would make it to

old Miss. She would keep me from getting that whipping. I was a devilish

boy. I would do everything in the world I could think of just for

devilment. Old mos was sure good to his slaves. I never went to school

a day in my life. Old Miss would carry me to church sometimes when it

was hot so we could fan for her. We used palmeter fan leaves for fans.

We ate pretty good in slavery time, but we did not have all of this late

stuff. Some of our dishes was possum stew, vegetables, persimmon pie and

tato bread. Ma did not allow us to sit around grown folks. When they

were talking she always made us get under the bed. Our bed was made from

pine poles. We children slept on pallets on the floor. The way slaves

married in slavery time they jumped over the broom and when they

separated they jumped backward over the broom. Times were better in

slavery time to my notion than they are now because they did not go

hungry, neither necked. They ate common and wore one kind of clothes."

A duck, a bullfrog and a skunk went to a circus, the duck and the

bullfrog got in, why didn't the skunk get in?

(Answer). The duck had a bill, the bullfrog had a greenback but the

skunk had nothing but a scent.

If your father's sister is not your aunt what kin is she to you? (your


What is the difference between a four quart measure and a side saddle?

(Answer). They both hold a gallon. (a gal on)

--Cora Armstrong, colored.

El Byrd Elbert Hunter facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail