Sarah And Tom Douglas

[HW: Regrets End of Slavery]


[TR: Sarah and Tom Douglas]

[TR: Aunt Sarah Douglas]--Ah wuz baptized de second year of surrender. Wuz

twelve years ole at de time an my mistress spoke fuh me when ah j'ined

de church. In them days when chillun j'ined de church some grown person

had ter speak fuh em an tell if they thought they wuz converted or not.

Now when chillun j'in de church if they is big enough ter talk they take

em in widout grown fokes speaking fuh em a tall.

Slavery times wuz sho good times. We wuz fed an clothed an had nothin to

worry about. Now poar ole niggers go hungry. Sho we wuz whipped in

slavery times. Mah ole man has stripes on his back now wha he wuz

whipped an ah wuz whipped too but hit hoped me up till now. Coase hit

did. Hit keeps me fum goin aroun here tellin lies an stealin yo


Me an mah ole man is been married sixty-six years an have nevah had no

chillun. Yo know little chillun is de sweetest thing in the worl'. Now

if we had chillun we would have someone tuh take care of us in our ole

days. Mah ole man, Tom, is 89 an I'se 82. Poar ole man. Ah does all ah

kin fuh him but I'se ole too. These young niggers is gettin so uppity.

They think they is better than we is. A Darkey jes don' love one another

an stick t'gether like white fokes does. But ah is goin ter stick ter my

ole man. He needs me. He is jes like a little helpless chile widout me

ter look after him. Ah used to be mighty frisky an mighty proud when ah

wuz young but ah wazn' as good then as ah is now. Ah likes ter go ter

church. See that little white church over de hill? That is Douglas

Chapel, a Baptist church. Me an mah ole man give de lan' fuh that

church. We had plenty them days when Douglas was laid out (meaning

Douglas Addition). But now poar ole niggers don' have enough ter eat all

de time. None of them church members is missionary enough ter bring us

somethin' ter eat. White fokes have good hearts but niggers is

grudgeful. De bigges thing among white fokes is they do lie sometime an

when they do they kin best a nigger all to pieces.

Niggers don' have as much 'ligion as they use ter. Ah went to a

missionary meeting at one sister's house an she said ter me: "Sister

Douglas, start us off wid a song" an ah started off with "Amazing

Grace." Sang bout half of de first verse an noticed none of them j'ined

in but ah kep' right on singin' an wuz gettin full of de sperit when

that sister spoke up an said: "Sister Douglas, don' yo know that is done

gone out of style?" an selected "Fly Away" an den all of them sisters

j'ined in an sung "Fly away, fly away" an hit sounded jes like a dance


Yas'm, that is our ole buggy standin aroun de corner of de house. We use

ter ride in hit till hit got so rickety. An that ole horse is our fambly

horse. Dolly Jane ah calls her. We've had her forty years an she gits

sick sometime jes like ah does an ah thinks sho she is gone this time

but she gits ovah hit jes like ah does when ah has a spell. We has lived

in this house since 1900 but we is goin ovah on de utha side of de

tracks soon wid the res of de niggers. Nobody lef on this side but white

fokes now ceptin us. When de railroad come through down there ah had a

cotton patch growin there an ah cried cause hit went through mah cotton

patch an ruint part of hit. All we got out'n hit wuz damages.

No'm, mah ole man caint talk ter yo all terday; he is sick. Mebby ifn yo

all come back he kin talk ter yo then.

(In the meantime we investigated Tom and Sarah Douglas and found that he

has a bank account and at one time owned all the land that is now

Douglas Addition. In a few days we went back and found Tom sitting on

the porch.)

Uncle Tom Douglas--Yas'm, ah members de wah. Ah wuz fo'teen when de wah

began an eighteen when hit closed. Mah marster wuz B.B. Thomas, Union

Parish, Louisiana, near Marion, Louisiana. Ah saw de fust soldiers go an

saw young marster go. When young marster come back at de close of de wah

he brought back a big piece of mule meat ter show us niggers what he

done have ter eat while he wuz in de army.

Ah nevah wuz sold but lots of marster's slaves wuz sold. They wuz sold

jes like stock. Ah members one fambly. De man wuz a blacksmith, de woman

a cook, an one of their chillun wuz waitin boy. They wuz put on de block

an sold an a diffunt man bought each one an they went ter diffunt part

of de country ter live on nevah did see one nother no moah. They wuz

sole jes like cows an horses. No'm, ah didn't like slavery days. Ah'd

rather be free an hungry.

(Tom is the only ex-slave who has told us that he had rather be free and

we believe that is because he has a bank account and is independent.)

Yo say tell yo about hants. There is such a thing. Yes mam. Some fokes

calls it fogyness but hit sho is true fuh me an Sarah has seed em haint

we Sarah. Here young missy, what is yo doin wid that pencil?

(After we had put up our notebooks and pencils and assured them that we

would not repeat it, they told us the following):

When me an Sarah lived out at de Moore place about three miles east on

the main street road we seed plenty of haints. De graveyard wuz in sight

of our house an we could see them sperits come up out de groun an they

would go past de house down in a grove an we could see them there

campin. We could see they campfires. We could hear their dishes rattling

an their tincups an knives an forks. An hear em talkin. Den again they

would be diggin with shovels. Sometimes in de graveyard we could see de

sperits doin de things they did befo they died. Some would be plowing,

some blacksmithing an each one doin what he had done while he wuz livin.

When day wuz breakin they would go runnin crost our yard an git back in

de graves. Yes'm, we seed em as long as we lived there. After we moved

from ther somebody dug up some gold that wuz buried at de corner of de

chimney. An hit is said that from that day hants have not been seen


Yes'm, there is no doubt erbout hit. They is such thin's as hants. Me an

Sarah has both seed em but we aint seed any in a long time.

Sarah Allen Sarah Anderson Interviewed By Bernice Bowden facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail