Margaret Bryant

Project #-1655

Mrs. Genevieve W. Chandler

Murrells Inlet, S. C.

Georgetown County


(Some recollections of 'The Reb Time day' given by

Aunt Margaret Bryant)

Visitor: "How are you Aunt Margaret?"

Margaret: "Missus, I ain't wuth! I ain't wuth!"

Visitor: "Aunt Margaret you've been here a long time. How old are you?"

Margaret: "I can't tell you my age no way in the world! When freedom

come, I been here. Not big nuff (enough) for work for the Reb, but I

been here Reb time. Been big nuff (enough) to know when Yankee gun-boat

come to Watsaw (Wachesaw). Whole gang o' Yankee come to the house and

didn't do a thing but ketch (catch) a gang o' fowl and gone on. And tell

the people (meaning the slaves) to take the house and go in and get what

they want. The obersheer (overseer) hear the Doctor whistle to the gate

and wabe (wave) him back. And then the Doctor know the Yankee been there

and he gone on to the creek house and get all he gold and ting (thing)

out the house and gone--Marion till Freedom then he come back.

"Yankee come in that night. Moon shine lak a day. Stay in the Doctor

house that night. Morning come, take a gang o' fowl and gone on!"

Visitor: "Aunt Margaret, what was your name before you were married?"

Margaret: "Margaret One. Brother and sister? I ain't one when I come

here. Ain't meet aunty, uncle--none. Me and my brudder Michael wuz twin.

I ain't meet none when I come here. All been sell. Me and my Ma One

here. Mary One. Husband title, husband nichel (initial) been 'One.'

Number one carpenter--give 'em that name Michael One--and he gibe 'em

that name. Born Sandy Island. Been to landing to Watsaw when gun-boat

come. Just a sneak long! Boat white. Hab (have) a red chimbley

(chimney.) Didn't try to carry we off. Tell 'em 'Go and help youself.'

Been after the buckra. (The Yankee trying to catch the buckra.)

"I see my Ma dye with some bush they call 'indigo,' and black walnut

bark. Big old pen for the sheep-folds.

"My Pa sister, Ritta One had that job. Nuss (nurse) the chillun. Chillun

house. One woman nuss (nurse) all the chillun while they ma in the

field--rice field. All size chillun. Git the gipsy (gypsum) weed. Beat

'em up for worm. Give 'em when the moon change. Take a bucket and follow

dem. And tell the Doctor how much a worm that one make and that one and

count dem (them). When the moon change, do that.

"I have one born with caul. Loss he caul. Rat carry 'em. Ain't here; he

see nothin. (The custom seems to be, to preserve the caul.)

"Child born feet fore-most see 'um too." (See spirit) "Talk chillun? Put

duh switch. Put you 'Bull pen.' Hab 'um (have them) a place can't see

you hand before you. Can't turn round good in there. Left you in there

till morning. Give you fifty lash and send you to work. You ain't done

that task, man and woman lick!

"Couldn't manage my ma. Obersheer (overseer) want to lick ma, Mary One

say, 'Going drownded meself! I done my work! Fore I take a lick, rather

drownded meself.'" Obersheer gone tell the Doctor. Tie her long rope.

Right to Sandy Island. Man hold the rope. Gone on. Jump in river. So

Doctor say, 'You too good labor for drown. Take dem (them) to Watsaw.'

Me and she and man what paddle the boat. Bring her to weave. Two womans

fuh card; two spin. Ma wop 'em off. Sail duh sheckel (shuttle) through


"Po-buckra come there and buy cloth from Ma. Buy three and four yard. Ma

sell that, have to weave day and night to make up that cloth to please

obersheer. Come big day time. 'Little chillun, whey (where) Mama?' Tell

'em Ma to the weaving house. Don't have money fuh pay. Bring hog and

such like as that to pay.

"You know Marse Allard age? Me and Marse Allard suck together. Me and

Marse Allard and my brudder Michael. My ma fadder mix wid (with) the

Injun. Son Larry Aikens. Stay Charston (Charlestown). Just as clean!

(Meaning Larry, her Uncle, very bright skin. Mixed with Indian.) See 'em

the one time. Come from Charston bring Doctor two horse."

Given by Aunt Margaret Bryant

Age--(Born before Freedom)

Murrells Inlet, S. C.

Manuel Johnson Margaret E Dickens facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail