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Slave Narrative of George Jones

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Interviewer: Rogers
Person Interviewed: George Jones
Location: Baltimore, Maryland
Place of Birth: Frederick County, Maryland
Date of Birth: 1853
Age: 84
Place of Residence: 207 Aisquith St., Baltimore Md.

Reference: Personal interview with George Jones, Ex-slave, at African M.E. Home, 207 Aisquith St., Baltimore.

“I was born in Frederick County, Maryland, 84 years ago or 1853. My father’s name was Henry and mother’s Jane; brothers Dave, Joe, Henry, John and sisters Annie and Josephine. I know my father and mother were slaves, but I do not recall to whom they belonged. I remember my grandparents.

“My father used to tell me how he would hide in the hay stacks at night, because he was whipped and treated badly by his master who was rough and hard-boiled on his slaves. Many a time the owner of the slaves and farm would come to the cabins late at night to catch the slaves in their dingy little hovels, which were constructed in cabin fashion and of stone and logs with their typical windows and rooms of one room up and one down with a window in each, the fireplaces built to heat and cook for occupants.

“The farm was like all other farms in Frederick County, raising grain, such as corn, wheat and fruit and on which work was seasonable, depending upon the weather, some seasons producing more and some less. When the season was good for the crop and crops plentiful, we had a little money as the plantation owner gave us some to spend.

“When hunting came, especially in the fall and winter, the weather was cold, I have often heard say father speak of rabbit, opossum and coon hunting and his dogs. You know in Frederick County there are plenty of woods, streams and places to hunt, giving homes and hiding places for such game.

“We dressed to meet the weather condition and wore shoes to suit rough traveling through woods and up and down the hills of the country.

“In my boyhood days, my father never spoke much of my master, only in the term I have expressed before, or the children, church, the poor white people in the neighborhood or the farm, their mode of living, social condition. I will say this in conclusion, the white people of Frederick County as a whole were kind towards the colored people and are today, very little race friction one way or the other.”

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