Robert Shepherd





ROBERT SHEPHERD, Age 91

386 Arch Street

Athens, Georgia



Written by:

Grace McCune [HW: (White)]

Athens



Edited by:

Sarah H. Hall

Athens



Leila Harris

Augusta



and

John N. Booth

District Supervisor

Federal Writers' Project

Residencies 6 & 7





Robert lives in a small house so old and in such bad repair that a

strong wind would no doubt tumble it down. Large holes in the roof

can be plainly seen from the gateway. The neat yard, filled with

old-fashioned flowers, is enclosed by a makeshift fence of rusty wire

sagging to the ground in places, and the gate rocks on one hinge. There

was some evidence that a porch had extended across the front of the

cottage, but it is entirely gone now and large rocks serve as steps at

the doorway.



Knocks and calls at the front of the house were unanswered and finally

Robert was found working in his garden behind the house. He is a tiny

old man, and his large sun hat made him seem smaller than he actually

was. He wore a clean but faded blue shirt and shabby gray pants much too

large for him. His shoes, bound to his feet with strips of cloth, were

so much too large that it was all he could do to shuffle along. He

removed his hat and revealed white hair that contrasted with his black

face, as he smiled in a friendly way. "Good morning, Missy! How is you?"

was his greeting. Despite his advanced age, he keeps his garden in

excellent condition. Not a blade of grass was to be seen. Asked how he

managed to keep it worked so efficiently he proudly answered: "Well

Miss, I jus' wuks in it some evvy day dat comes 'cept Sundays and, when

you keeps right up wid it dat way, it ain't so hard. Jus' look 'round

you! Don't you see I got de bestest beans and squashes, 'round here, and

down under dem 'tater vines, I kin tell you, dem roots is jus' full of

'taters. My Old Marster done larnt me how to gyarden. He allus made us

raise lots of gyarden sass such as: beans, peas, roas'in' ears,

collards, turnip greens, and ingons (onions). For a fact, dere was jus'

'bout all de kinds of veg'tables us knowed anything 'bout dem days right

dar in our Marster's big old gyarden. Dere was big patches of 'taters,

and in dem wheatfields us growed enough to make bread for all de folks

on dat dere plantation. Us sho' did have plenty of mighty good somepin

t'eat.



"I would ax you to come in and set down in my house to talk," he said,

"but I don't 'spect you could climb up dem dere rocks to my door, and

dem's all de steps I got." When Robert called to his daughter, who lived

next door, and told her to bring out some chairs, she suggested that the

interview take place on her porch. "It's shady and cool on my porch,"

she said, "and Pa's done been a-diggin' in his garden so long he's plum

tuckered out; he needs to set down and rest." After making her father

comfortable, she drew up a bucket of water from the well at the edge of

the porch and, after he had indulged in a long drink of the fresh water,

he began his story.



"I was borned on Marster Joe Echols' plantation in Oglethorpe County,

'bout 10 miles from Lexin'ton, Georgy. Mammy was Cynthia Echols 'fore

she married up wid my daddy. He was Peyton Shepherd. Atter Pappy and

Mammy got married, Old Marse Shepherd sold Pappy to Marse Joe Echols so

as dey could stay together.



"Marse Joe, he had three plantations, but he didn't live on none of 'em.

He lived in Lexin'ton. He kept a overseer on each one of his plantations

and dey had better be good to his Niggers, or else Marse Joe would sho'

git 'em 'way from dar. He never 'lowed 'em to wuk us too hard, and in

bad or real cold weather us didn't have to do no outside wuk 'cept

evvyday chores what had to be done, come rain or shine, lak milkin',

tendin' de stock, fetchin' in wood, and things lak dat. He seed dat us

had plenty of good somepin t'eat and all de clothes us needed. Us was

lots better off in dem days dan us is now.



"Old Marster, he had so many Niggers dat he never knowed 'em all. One

day he was a-ridin' 'long towards one of his plantations and he met one

of his slaves, named William. Marse Joe stopped him and axed him who he

was. William said: 'Why Marster, I'se your Nigger. Don't you know me?'

Den Marster, he jus' laughed and said: 'Well, hurry on home when you

gits what you is gwine atter.' He was in a good humor dat way most all

de time. I kin see him now a-ridin' dat little hoss of his'n what he

called Button, and his little fice dog hoppin' 'long on three legs right

side of de hoss. No Ma'am, dere warn't nothin' de matter wid' dat little

dog; walkin' on three legs was jus' his way of gittin' 'round.



"Marster never let none of de slave chillun on his plantation do no wuk

'til dey got fifteen--dat was soon 'nough, he said. On all of his

plantations dere was one old 'oman dat didn't have nothin' else to do

but look atter and cook for de nigger chillun whilst dey mammies was at

wuk in de fields. Aunt Viney tuk keer of us. She had a big old horn what

she blowed when it was time for us to eat, and us knowed better dan to

git so fur off us couldn't hear dat horn, for Aunt Viney would sho' tear

us up. Marster had done told her she better fix us plenty t'eat and give

it to us on time. Dere was a great long trough what went plum 'cross de

yard, and dat was whar us et. For dinner us had peas or some other sort

of veg'tables, and cornbread. Aunt Viney crumbled up dat bread in de

trough and poured de veg'tables and pot-likker over it. Den she blowed

de horn and chillun come a-runnin' from evvy which away. If us et it all

up, she had to put more victuals in de trough. At nights, she crumbled

de cornbread in de trough and poured buttermilk over it. Us never had

nothin' but cornbread and buttermilk at night. Sometimes dat trough

would be a sight, 'cause us never stopped to wash our hands, and 'fore

us had been eatin' more dan a minute or two what was in de trough would

look lak de red mud what had come off of our hands. Sometimes Aunt Viney

would fuss at us and make us clean it out.



"Dere was a big sand bar down on de crick what made a fine place to

play, and wadin' in de branches was lots of fun. Us frolicked up and

down dem woods and had all sorts of good times--anything to keep away

from Aunt Viney 'cause she was sho' to have us fetchin' in wood or

sweepin' de yards if us was handy whar she could find us. If us was out

of her sight she never bothered 'bout dem yards and things. Us was

skeered to answer dat horn when us got in Marster's 'bacco. He raised

lots of 'bacco and rationed it out to mens, but he never 'lowed chillun

to have none 'til dey was big enough to wuk in de fields. Us found out

how to git in his 'bacco house and us kept on gittin' his 'bacco 'fore

it was dried out 'til he missed it. Den he told Aunt Viney to blow dat

horn and call up all de chillun. I'se gwine to whup evvy one of 'em, he

would 'clare. Atter us got dere and he seed dat green 'bacco had done

made us so sick us couldn't eat, he jus' couldn't beat us. He jus'

laughed and said: 'It's good enough for you.'



"Aunt Martha, she done de milkin' and helped Aunt Nancy cook for de

slaves. Dey had a big long kitchen up at de big house whar de overseer

lived. De slaves what wuked in de field never had to do deir own

cookin'. It was all done for 'em in dat big old kitchen. Dey cooked some

of de victuals in big old washpots and dere was sho' a plenty for all.

All de cookin' was done in big fireplaces what had racks made inside to

hang pots on and dey had big old ovens for bakin', and thick iron

skillets, and long-handled fryin' pans. You jus' can't 'magine how good

things was cooked dat way on de open fire. Nobody never had no better

hams and other meat dan our Marster kept in dem big old smokehouses, and

his slaves had meat jus' lak white folks did. Dem cooks knowed dey had

to cook a plenty and have it ready when it was time for de slaves to

come in from de fields. Miss Ellen, she was the overseer's wife, went

out in de kitchen and looked over evvything to see that it was all right

and den she blowed de bugle. When de slaves heared dat bugle, dey come

in a-singin' from de fields. Dey was happy 'cause dey knowed Miss Ellen

had a good dinner ready for 'em.



"De slave quarters was long rows of log cabins wid chimblies made out of

sticks and red mud. Dem chimblies was all de time ketchin' fire. Dey

didn't have no glass windows. For a window, dey jus' cut a openin' in a

log and fixed a piece of plank 'cross it so it would slide when dey

wanted to open or close it. Doors was made out of rough planks, beds was

rough home-made frames nailed to de side of de cabins, and mattresses

was coarse, home-wove ticks filled wid wheat straw. Dey had good

home-made kivver. Dem beds slept mighty good.



"Dere warn't many folks sick dem days, 'specially 'mongst de slaves.

When one did die, folks would go 12 or 15 miles to de buryin'. Marster

would say: 'Take de mules and wagons and go but, mind you, take good

keer of dem mules.' He never seemed to keer if us went--fact was, he

said us ought to go. If a slave died on our place, nobody went to de

fields 'til atter de buryin'. Marster never let nobody be buried 'til

dey had been dead 24 hours, and if dey had people from some other place,

he waited 'til dey could git dar. He said it warn't right to hurry 'em

off into de ground too quick atter dey died. Dere warn't no undertakers

dem days. De homefolks jus' laid de corpse out on de coolin' board 'til

de coffin was made. Lordy Miss! Ain't you never seed one of dem coolin'

boards? A coolin' board was made out of a long straight plank raised a

little at de head, and had legs fixed to make it set straight. Dey wropt

'oman corpses in windin' sheets. Uncle Squire, de man what done all de

wagon wuk and buildin' on our place, made coffins. Dey was jus' plain

wood boxes what dey painted to make 'em look nice. White preachers

conducted de funerals, and most of de time our own Marster done it,

'cause he was a preacher hisself. When de funeral was done preached, dey

sung Harps From De Tomb, den dey put de coffin in a wagon and driv

slow and keerful to de graveyard. De preacher prayed at de grave and de

mourners sung, I'se Born To Die and Lay Dis Body Down. Dey never had

no outside box for de coffin to be sot in, but dey put planks on top of

de coffin 'fore dey started shovellin' in de dirt.



"Fourth Sundays was our meetin' days, and evvybody went to church. Us

went to our white folks' church and rid in a wagon 'hind deir car'iage.

Dere was two Baptist preachers--one of 'em was Mr. John Gibson and de

other was Mr. Patrick Butler. Marse Joe was a Methodist preacher

hisself, but dey all went to de same church together. De Niggers sot in

de gallery. When dey had done give de white folks de sacrament, dey

called de Niggers down from de gallery and give dem sacrament too.

Church days was sho' 'nough big meetin' days 'cause evvybody went. Dey

preached three times a day; at eleven in de mornin', at three in de

evenin', and den again at night. De biggest meetin' house crowds was

when dey had baptizin', and dat was right often. Dey dammed up de crick

on Sadday so as it would be deep enough on Sunday, and dey done de

baptizin' 'fore dey preached de three o'clock sermon. At dem baptizin's

dere was all sorts of shoutin', and dey would sing Roll Jordan, Roll,

De Livin' Waters, and Lord I'se Comin' Home.



"When de craps was laid by and most of de hardest wuk of de year done

up, den was camp-meetin' time, 'long in de last of July and sometimes in

August. Dat was when us had de biggest times of all. Dey had great big

long tables and jus' evvything good t'eat. Marster would kill five or

six hogs and have 'em carried dar to be barbecued, and he carried his

own cooks along. Atter de white folks et dey fed de Niggers, and dere

was allus a plenty for all. Marster sho' looked atter all his Niggers

good at dem times. When de camp-meetin' was over, den come de big

baptizin': white folks fust, den Niggers. One time dere was a old slave

'oman what got so skeered when dey got her out in de crick dat somebody

had to pull her foots out from under her to git her under de water. She

got out from dar and testified dat it was de devil a-holdin' her back.



"De white ladies had nice silk dresses to wear to church. Slave 'omans

had new calico dresses what dey wore wid hoopskirts dey made out of

grapevines. Dey wore poke bonnets wid ruffles on 'em and, if de weather

was sort of cool, dey wore shawls. Marster allus wore his linen duster.

Dat was his white coat, made cutaway style wid long tails. De cloth for

most all of de clothes was made at home. Marse Joe raised lots of sheep

and de wool was used to make cloth for de winter clothes. Us had a great

long loom house whar some of de slaves didn't do nothin' but weave

cloth. Some cyarded bats, some done de spinnin', and dere was more of

'em to do de sewin'. Miss Ellen, she looked atter all dat, and she cut

out most of de clothes. She seed dat us had plenty to wear. Sometimes

Marster would go to de sewin' house, and Mist'ess would tell him to git

on 'way from dar and look atter his own wuk, dat her and Aunt Julia

could run dat loom house. Marster, he jus' laughed den and told us

chillun what was hangin' round de door to jus' listen to dem 'omans

cackle. Oh, but he was a good old boss man.



"Us had water buckets, called piggens, what was made out of cedar and

had handles on de sides. Sometimes us sawed off little vinegar kegs and

put handles on 'em. Us loved to drink out of gourds. Dere was lots of

gourds raised evvy year. Some of 'em was so big dey was used to keep

eggs in and for lots of things us uses baskets for now. Dem little

gourds made fine dippers.



"Dem cornshuckin's was sho' 'nough big times. When us got all de corn

gathered up and put in great long piles, den de gittin' ready started.

Why dem 'omans cooked for days, and de mens would git de shoats ready to

barbecue. Marster would send us out to git de slaves from de farms

'round about dar.



"De place was all lit up wid light'ood-knot torches and bonfires, and

dere was 'citement a-plenty when all de Niggers got to singin' and

shoutin' as dey made de shucks fly. One of dem songs went somepin lak

dis: 'Oh! my haid, my pore haid, Oh! my pore haid is 'fected.' Dere

warn't nothin' wrong wid our haids--dat was jus' our way of lettin' our

overseer know us wanted some likker. Purty soon he would come 'round wid

a big horn of whiskey, and dat made de 'pore haid' well, but it warn't

long 'fore it got wuss again, and den us got another horn of whiskey.

When de corn was all shucked den us et all us could and, let me tell

you, dat was some good eatin's. Den us danced de rest of de night.



"Next day when us all felt so tired and bad, Marster he would tell us

'bout stayin' up all night, but Mist'ess tuk up for us, and dat tickled

Old Marster. He jus' laughed and said: 'Will you listen to dat 'oman?'

Den he would make some of us sing one of dem songs us had done been

singin' to dance by. It goes sort of lak dis: 'Turn your pardner 'round!

Steal 'round de corner, 'cause dem Johnson gals is hard to beat! Jus'

glance 'round and have a good time! Dem gals is hard to find!' Dat's

jus' 'bout all I can ricollect of it now.



"Us had big 'possum hunts, and us sho' cotched a heap of 'em. De gals

cooked 'em wid 'taters and dey jus' made your mouth water. I sho' wish I

had one now. Rabbits was good too. Marster didn't 'low no huntin' wid

guns, so us jus' took dogs when us went huntin'. Rabbits was kilt wid

sticks and rocks 'cept when a big snow come. Dey was easy to track to

dey beds den, and us could jus' reach in and pull 'em out. When us cotch

'nough of 'em, us had big rabbit suppers.



"De big war was 'bout over when dem yankees come by our place and jus'

went through evvything. Dey called all de slaves together and told 'em

dey was free and didn't b'long to nobody no more, and said de slaves

could take all dey wanted from de smokehouses and barns and de big

house, and could go when and whar dey wanted to go. Dey tried to hand us

out all de meat and hams, but us told 'em us warn't hongry, 'cause

Marster had allus done give us all us wanted. When dey couldn't make

none of us take nothin', dey said it was de strangest thing dey had done

ever seed, and dat dat man Echols must have sho' been good to his

Niggers.



"When dem yankees had done gone off Marster come out to our place. He

blowed de bugle to call us all up to de house. He couldn't hardly talk,

'cause somebody had done told him dat dem yankees couldn't talk his

Niggers into stealin' nothin'. Marster said he never knowed 'fore how

good us loved him. He told us he had done tried to be good to us and had

done de best he could for us and dat he was mighty proud of de way evvy

one of us had done 'haved ourselfs. He said dat de war was over now, and

us was free and could go anywhar us wanted to, but dat us didn't have to

go if us wanted to stay dar. He said he would pay us for our wuk and

take keer of us if us stayed or, if us wanted to wuk on shares, he would

'low us to wuk some land dat way. A few of dem Niggers drifted off, but

most of 'em stayed right dar 'til dey died."



A sad note had come into Robert's voice and he seemed to be almost

overcome by the sorrow aroused by his reminiscences. His daughter was

quick to perceive this and interrupted the conversation: "Please Lady,"

she said. "Pa's too feeble to talk any more today. Can't you let him

rest now and come back again in a day or two? Maybe he will be done

'membered things he couldn't call back today."



The front door was open when Robert's house was next visited, and a

young girl answered the knock. "Come in," she said. The little house was

as dilapidated in the interior as it was on the outside. Bright June

sunshine filtered through the many gaps in the roof arousing wonder as

to how the old man managed to remain inside this house during heavy

rains. The room was scrupulously clean and neat. In it was a very old

iron bed, a dresser that was minus its mirror, two chairs, and a table,

all very old and dilapidated. The girl laughed when she called attention

to a closet that was padlocked. "Dat's whar Grandpa keeps his rations,"

she said, and then volunteered the information: "He's gone next door to

stay wid Ma, whilst I clean up his house. He can't stand no dust, and

when I sweeps, I raises a dust." The girl explained a 12 inch square

aperture in the door, with a sliding board fastened on the inside by

saying: "Dat's Grandpa's peep-hole. He allus has to see who's dar 'fore

he unfastens his door."



Robert was sitting on the back porch and his daughter was ironing just

inside the door. Both seemed surprised and happy to see the interviewer

and the daughter placed a comfortable chair for her as far as the

dimensions of the small porch would permit from the heat of the charcoal

bucket and irons. Remembering that his earlier recollections had ended

with the close of the Civil War, Robert started telling about the days

"atter freedom had done come."



"Me, I stayed right on dar 'til atter Marster died. He was sick a long,

long time, and one morning Old Mist'ess, she called to me. 'Robert,' she

said, 'you ain't gwine to have no Marster long, 'cause he's 'bout gone.'

I called all de Niggers up to de big house and when dey was all in de

yard, Mist'ess, she said: 'Robert, you been wid us so long, you kin come

in and see him 'fore he's gone for good.' When I got in dat room I

knowed de Lord had done laid His hand on my good Old Marster, and he was

a-goin' to dat Home he used to preach to us Niggers 'bout, and it

'peared to me lak my heart would jus' bust. When de last breath was done

gone, I went back out in de yard and told de other Niggers, and dere was

sho' cryin' and prayin' 'mongst 'em, 'cause all of 'em loved Marster.

Dat was sho' one big funeral. Mist'ess said she wanted all of Marster's

old slaves to go, 'cause he loved 'em so, and all of us went. Some what

had done been gone for years come back for Marster's funeral.



"Next day, atter de funeral was over, Mist'ess, she said: 'Robert, I

want you to stay on wid me 'cause you know how he wanted his wuk done.'

Den Mist'ess' daughter and her husband, Mr. Dickenson, come dar to stay.

None of de Niggers laked dat Mr. Dickenson and so most of 'em left and

den, 'bout 2 years atter Marster died, Mist'ess went to 'Lanta (Atlanta)

to stay wid another of her daughters, and she died dar. When Mist'ess

left, I left too and come on here to Athens, and I been here ever since.



"Dere warn't much town here den, and 'most all 'round dis here place was

woods. I wuked 'bout a year for Mr. John McCune's fambly on de old

Pitner place, den I went to wuk for Mr. Manassas B. McGinty. He was a

cyarpenter and built most of de fine houses what was put up here dem

days. I got de lumber from him to build my house. Dere warn't but two

other houses 'round here den. My wife, Julie, washed for de white folks

and helped 'em do deir housewuk. Our chillun used to come bring my

dinner. Us had dem good old red peas cooked wid side meat in a pot in de

fireplace, and ashcake to go wid 'em. Dat was eatin's. Julie would rake

out dem coals and kivver 'em wid ashes, and den she would wrop a pone of

cornbread dough in collard or cabbage leaves and put it on dem ashes and

rake more ashes over it. You had to dust off de bread 'fore you et it,

but ashcake was mighty good, folks what lived off of it didn't git sick

lak dey does now a-eatin' dis white flour bread all de time. If us had

any peas left from dinner and supper, Julie would mash 'em up right

soft, make little cakes what she rolled in corn meal, and fry 'em for

breakfast. Dem sausage cakes made out of left-over peas was mighty fine

for breakfast.



"When de chillun started out wid my dinner, Julie allus made two of 'em

go together and hold hands all de way so dey wouldn't git lost. Now,

little chillun jus' a few years old goes anywhar dey wants to. Folks

don't look atter dey chillun lak dey ought to, and t'ain't right. Den,

when night come, chillun went right off to bed. Now, dey jus' runs

'round 'most all night, and it sho' is a-ruinin' dis young genrayshun

(generation). Dey don't take no keer of deirselfs. My own grandchillun

is de same way.



"I left Mr. McGinty and went to wuk for Mr. Bloomfield in de mill. Mr.

Bill Dootson was our boss, and he was sho' a good man. Dem was good

times. I wuked inside de mill and 'round de yard too, and sometimes dey

sont me to ride de boat wid de cotton or sometimes wid cloth, whatever

dey was sendin'. Dere was two mills den. One was down below de bridge on

Oconee Street, and de old check factory was t'other side of de bridge on

Broad Street. Dey used boats to carry de cotton and de cloth from one

mill to de other.



"Missy, can you b'lieve it? I wuked for 68c a day and us paid for our

home here. Dey paid us off wid tickets what us tuk to de commissary to

git what us needed. Dey kept jus' evvything dat anybody could want down

dar at de comp'ny store. So us raised our nine chillun, give 'em plenty

to eat and wear too and a good roof over deir haids, all on 68c a day

and what Julie could make wukin' for de white folks. 'Course things

warn't high-priced lak dey is now, but de main diff'unce is dat folks

didn't have to have so many kinds of things to eat and wear den lak dey

does now. Dere warn't nigh so many ways to throw money 'way den.



"Dere warn't so many places to go; jus' church and church spreads, and

Sundays, folks went buggy ridin'. De young Niggers, 'specially dem what

was a-sparkin', used to rent buggies and hosses from Mr. Selig

Bernstein. He kept a big livery stable den and he had a hoss named

Buckskin. Dat was de hoss what evvybody wanted 'cause he was so gentle

and didn't skeer de 'omans and chilluns. Mr. Bernstein is a-livin' yit,

and he is sho' a good man to do business wid. Missy, dere was lots of

good white folks den. Most of dem old ones is done passed on. One of de

best of 'em was Mr. Robert Chappell. He done passed on, but whilst he

lived he was mighty good to evvybody and de colored folks sho' does miss

him. He b'lieved in helpin' 'em and he give 'em several churches and

tried his best to git 'em to live right. If Mr. Robert Chappell ain't in

Heb'en, dere ain't no use for nobody else to try to git dar. His

granddaughter married Jedge Matthews, and folks says she is most as good

as her granddaddy was."



Robert chuckled when he was asked to tell about his wedding. "Miss," he

said, "I didn't have no sho' 'nough weddin'. Me and Julie jus' jumped

over de broom in front of Marster and us was married. Dat was all dere

was to it. Dat was de way most of de slave folks got married dem days.

Us knowed better dan to ax de gal when us wanted to git married. Us jus'

told our Marster and he done de axin'. Den, if it was all right wid de

gal, Marster called all de other Niggers up to de big house to see us

jump over de broom. If a slave wanted to git married to somebody on

another place, den he told Marster and his Marster would talk to de

gal's Marster. Whatever dey 'greed on was all right. If neither one of

'em would sell one of de slaves what wanted to git married, den dey let

'em go ahead and jump over de broom, and de man jus' visited his wife on

her Marster's place, mostly on Wednesday and Sadday nights. If it was a

long piece off, he didn't git dar so often. Dey had to have passes den,

'cause de patterollers would git 'em sho' if dey didn't. Dat meant a

thrashin', and dey didn't miss layin' on de stick, when dey cotch a

Nigger.



"Dese days, de boys and gals jus' walks off and don't say nothin' to

nobody, not even to dey mammies and daddies. [TR: written in margin:

"Elopement"] Now take dis daughter of mine--Callie is her name--she

runned away when she was 'bout seventeen. Dat day her mammy had done

sont her wid de white folks' clothes. She had on brass-toed brogan

shoes, a old faded cotton dress dat was plum up to her knees,--dem days,

long dresses was stylish--and she wore a old bonnet. She was totin' de

clothes to Mrs. Reese and met up wid dat Davenport boy. Dey traips'd up

to de courthouse, got a license, and was married 'fore me and Julie

knowed nothin' 'bout it. Julie sho' did light out from hyar to go git

Callie. She brung her back and kept her locked up in de house a long

time 'fore she would let her live wid dat Nigger.



"Us had our troubles den, but dey warn't lak de troubles us has now.

Now, it seems lak dem was mighty good days back when Arch Street was

jus' a path through de woods. Julie, she's done been gone a long time,

and all of our chillun's daid 'cept three, and two of 'em is done gone

up north. Jus' me and my Callie and de grandchillun is all dat's left

here. Soon I'se gwine to be 'lowed to go whar Julie is and I'se ready

any time, 'cause I done been here long 'nough."



When the visitor arose to take her departure Robert said: "Good-bye

Missy, come back to see me and Callie again 'cause us laked your

'pearments (appearance) de fust time you was here. Jus' trust in de

Lord, Miss, and He will take keer of you wharever you is."





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