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William Smith Oberline Road

From: North Carolina

N.C. District: No. 2
Worker: T. Pat Matthews
No. Words: 394
Story teller: William Smith
Editor: Daisy Bailey Waitt

920 Oberlin Road

"My full name is William Smith. I was born August 17, eighty years ago,
near Neuse River at a place called Wilder's Grove. I belonged to Gaston
E. Wiley and my missus was Sarah. Don't remember how many children they
had but one or two o' 'em are living in Raleigh now, some place on
North Street. I had good food and clothing and a good place to sleep. I
was not big enough to work much but they were good to me. I jest done
little things aroun' the house.

"I remember seein' the Yankees. I seen 'em take things. Yes, I wus big
enough to see 'em shoot hogs, an' cows, an' kill the chickens. They
went through the house and took what they wanted. After the war we
moved over about the Asylum on the Haywood Place. We went to Bryant
Green's from the Haywood place. We lived in Raleigh a long time, then I
went to Arkansas. My mother and father died in Raleigh.

"I stayed in Arkansas 40 years, and then came back to Raleigh. I am
partly paralyzed. I have had a stroke. I married Anna Regan of Wake
County. She went from Wake County to Arkansas and I married her there.
Her mother's father and the family all went to Arkansas. She is 71
years old the 8th of last April. She has had two strokes and can't talk
any more. We have no boys but two girls, Matilda and Emma Maye Smith.
Matilda Parker my daughter lives in Pittsburg, Pa. Emma Maye works to
support us. She works as nurse for Mrs. J.H. Hunter but right now is
out of work. Charity helps us a little. One half peck meal, 1 pound
powdered milk, two cans grape fruit juice, one half pound coffee per
week. This amounts to about eighty cents worth rations per week. The
charity don't have much to give.

"I have been back from Arkansas nine years the seventh of last April. I
was never teached no books. I never saw a patteroller, but daddy told
me about 'em. I do not remember much about churches before the
surrender. I cannot read and write.

"I don't remember the overseers, and I know nuthin' 'bout dem men
Lincoln and the rest of 'em you have asked me bout. Reckon they were
all right."


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