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Slave Narrative of Charley Watson

Interviewer: W. W. Dixon Person Interviewed: Charley Watson Location: South Carolina Age: 87 “Dis is a mighty hot day I tells you, and after climbing them steps I just got to fan myself befo’ I give answer to your questions. You got any ‘bacco I could chaw and a place to spit? Dis old darkie maybe answer more better if he be allowed to be placed lak dat at de beginnin’ of de ‘sperience. “Where was I born? Why right dere on de Hog Fork Place, thought everybody knowed dat! It was de home place of my old Marster Daniel Hall, one of de Rockefellers of his day and generation, I tells you, he sho was. My pappy had big name, my marster call him Denmore, my mammy went by de name of Mariyer. She was bought out of a drove from Virginny long befo’ de war. They both b’long to old marster and bless God live on de same place in a little log house. Let’s see; my brother Bill is one, he livin’ at de stone quarry at Salisbury, North Carolina. My sister Lugenie marry a Boulware nigger and they tells me dat woman done take dat nigger and make sumpin’ out of him. They owns their own automobile and livin’ in Cleveland, Ohio. “Us live in quarters, two string of houses a quarter mile long and just de width of a wagon road betwixt them. How many slaves marster had? Dere was four hundred in 1850, dat was de year I was born, so allowing for de natural ‘crease, ‘spect dere was good many more when...

The Saponi and Tutelo Indians

The Tutelo and Saponi tribes must be considered together. Their history under either name begins in 1670. As already stated, Monahassanugh and Nahyssan are other forms of Yesan, the name given to themselves by the last surviving Tutelo, and which seems to have been the generic term used by all the tribes of this connection to designate them as a people. The name Saponi (Monasickapanough?) was generally limited to a particular tribe or aggregation of tribal remnants, while the Iroquois name Tutelo, Totero, or Todirich-roone, in its various forms, although commonly used by the English to designate a particular tribe, was really the generic Iroquois term for all the Siouan tribes of Virginia and Carolina, including even the Catawba. In 1722 the remnants of all the tribes of Virginia and the adjacent parts of Carolina, included under this general designation by the Iroquois, had been gathered at Fort Christanna and were commonly known collectively as Christanna Indians or Saponi. After their removal to the Iroquois country in the north the Iroquois collective term, Tutelo, became more prominent. In deference to Hale, who first established their Siouan affinity, we have chosen to use the form Tutelo, although Totero is more in agreement with the old authorities. With the Iroquois it takes the tribal suffix rone, as Todirich roone. Hale states that, so far as known, the name has no meaning either to the Tutelo, who call themselves Yesang, or to the Iroquois1 . As the name is used by Batts and Lawson it probably belongs to some southern language and was adopted by the Iroquois. It frequently happens that Indian...

Saponi Tribe

Saponi Indians. One of the eastern Siouan tribes, formerly living in North Carolina and Virginia, but now extinct. The tribal name was occasionally applied to the whole group of Ft Christanna tribes, also occasionally included under Tutelo. That this tribe belonged to the Siouan stock has been placed beyond doubt by the investigations of Hale and Mooney. Their language appears to have been the same as the Tutelo to the extent that the people of the two tribes could readily understand each other. Mooney has shown that the few Saponi words recorded are Siouan. Lederer mentions a war in which the Saponi seem to have been engaged with the Virginia settlers as early as 1654-56, the time of the attack by the Cherokee, probably in alliance with them. The first positive notice is by Lederer (1670), who informs us that he stopped a few days at Sapon, a town of the Tutelo confederacy, situated on a tributary of the upper Roanoke. This village was apparently on Otter river, southwest of Lynchburg, Virginia. Pintahae is mentioned also as another of their villages near by. It is evident that the Saponi and Tutelo were living at that time in close and apparently confederated relation. In 1671 they were visited by Thomas Batts and others accompanied by two Indian guides. After traveling nearly due west from the mouth of the Appomattox about 140 miles, they came to Sapong, or Saponys, town. Having been harassed by the Iroquois in this locality, the Saponi and Tutelo at a later date removed to the junction of Staunton and Dan rivers, where they settled near the...

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