Josephine Ames Interviewed By Pernella Anderson





Name of Interviewer: Pernella Anderson

Subject: Early Days in Caledonia--Early days in El Dorado



Name: Josephine Ames

Occupation: Domestic

Resident: Fordville

Age: not given.

[TR: Information moved from bottom of first page.]





Ah wuz bo'n de first year niggers wuz free. Wuz born in Caledonia at de

Primm place. Mah ma belonged tuh George Thompson. After mah ma died ah

stayed wid de Wommacks, a while. Aftuh dat mah pa taken me home. Pa's

name wuz Jesse Flueur. Ah worked lak er slave. Ah cut wood, sawed logs,

picked 400 pounds uv cotton evah day. Ah speck ah married de first time

ah wuz about fo'teen years ole. Ah been mahrid three times. All mah

husband's is daid. Ole man England and ole man Cullens run business

places and ole man Wooley. His name wuz reason Wooley. De Woolies got

cemetery uv dey own right dar near de Cobb place. No body is buried in

dar but de fambly uv Wooleys. Ole man Allen Hale, he run er store dar

too. He is yet livin right dar. He is real ole. De ole Warren Mitchell

place whar ah use tuh live is Guvment land. Warren Mitchell, he

homesteaded the place. We lived dar and made good crops. De purtiest dar

wuz eround, but not hit's growed up. Don lived dar and made good crops.

De purtiest dar wuz eround. Dar is whah all mah chillun wuz bo'n. Ah use

tuh take mah baby an walk tuh El Dorado to sevice. Ah use tuh come tuh

El Dorado wid a oman by de name of Sue Foster. Nothin but woods when dey

laid de railroad heah. Dey built dem widh horses and axes. Ah saw em

when dey whoop de hosses and oxen till dey fall out working dem when dey

laid dat steel. Ah wuz at de first buryin uv de fust pussen buried in

Caledonia graveyard. Huh name wuz Joe Ann Polk. We set up wid huh all

night and sing and pray. An when we got nearly tuh de church de bells

started tolling and de folks started tuh singin. When evah any body died

dey ring bells tuh let yo know some body wuz daid. A wuz born on

Christmas day, an ah had two chilluns born on Christmas Day. Dey wuz

twins and one uv em had two teeth and his hair hung down on her

shoulders when hit wuz born but hit did not live but er wek.





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