Seabe Tuttle

Interviewer: Zillah Cross Peel

Information given by: Seabe Tuttle

Residence: Washington County, seven miles east of Fayetteville.

Seabe Tuttle who was born in slavery in 1859, belonged to James

Middleton Tuttle of Richland, which was about seven miles east of


"I was just a baby when the war was but I do recollect a lot of things

that my ma told me about the War. Our folks all come from Tennessee. My

mother was named Esther, she belonged to Ole Man Tom Smith who gived

her to Miss Evaline, who was Mister Mid Tuttle's wife. The Tuttles and

Smiths lived joining farms."

"You see, Mister Tuttle was a colonel in the Confederate army and when

he went off with the army he left all his slaves and stock in care of

Mr. Lafe Boone. Miss Mollie and Miss Nannie, and Miss Jim and another

daughter I disrecolect her her name, all went in carriages and wagons

down south following the Confederate army. They took my pa, Mark, and

other servants, my mother's sister, Americus and Barbary. They told them

they would bring them back home after the War. Then my mother and me and

the other darkies, men and women and children, followed them with the

cattle and horses and food. But us didn't get no further than Dardanelle

when the Federals captured us and took us back to the Federal garrison

at Ft. Smith, where they kept us six months. Yes'm they were good to us

there. We would get our food at the com'sary. But one day my ma and my

sister, Mandy, found a white man that said he would bring us back to

Fayetteville. No'm, I disremember his name."

"We found us a cabin to live in here. Didn't have to pay rent then likes

they do now. We lived here but after a while my mother died. They had

two battles 'round here, the Battle of Prairie Grave and one was the

Battle of Pea Ridge, after we comed back but no soldiers bothered us. I

remember that back from where the Christian church is now, down to the

Town Branch, there was a whole lot of Federal soldiers staying, they

called it then Cato Branch, cause a man by the name of Cato owned all

that land."

"Yes'm, I guess we had a purty good master and missus. We never did get

treated much rough."

"After the War, Miss Evaline brought back all the colored people that

she took with her, but my father. He got married down there and didn't

come back for a long time. Then he did and died here. Two of Miss

Eveline's daughters married down there. They didn't have no boys 'tall,

just four girls."

"When Peace was made the slaves all scattered. We none was givin'

nothin' for as I know. I worked on a farm for $13. a month and my board,

for a man down at Oxford's Bend, then I went down to Van Buren where I

worked as a porter in a hotel then I went to Morrilton and I married. We

come back here and I worked all the time as a carpenter. I worked for

Mister A.M. Byrnes. I helped build a lot of fine houses round here and I

helped put a roof on the Main Building at the University."

"Yes'm, I own my home down by the school, I can't make much money these

days. It kinda worries me. My folks all dead but three of my brothers

children. One of these is blind. He lives on the old home my mother had.

The county gives him a little food and a little money."

"Yes'm, my white folks were all good to us. Purty good to us."

"After Peace was made though, we all jes' scattered, somehow."

Scott Mitchell Sebert Douglas facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail