The following data is extracted from Arkansas Slave Narratives.
"I never was sold. I was born in Oakland, Mississippi. My master said he wanted all he raised. He never sold one. He bought my mother in Lexington County. She was a field hand. Our owners was Master Johnson Buntin and Mistress Sue Buntin. They had two childrenóBob and Fannie. He had a big plantation and four families of slaves. Charlotte was the cook. Myra worked at the house and in the field. He had seven little colored boys and two little colored girls. I spent most of my time up at the house playing with Bob and Fannie. When mistress whooped one she whooped all three. She would whoop us for stealing her riding horse out. We would bridle it and all three ride and ride. We got several whoopings about that.
"I have seen colored folks sold at Oakland. They had a block and nigger traders come. One trader would go and see a fine baby. He keep on till he got it. I've seen them take babies from the mother's arm and if the mother dare cry, they would git a beatin'. They look like they bust over their grief.
"If you was out after seven o'clock the patrollers git you. They would beat and take you home. Some masters say to them, 'You done right,' and some say, 'You bring my hands home; I'll whoop them myself.'
"The patrollers caught one of Gaddises women and whooped her awful for coming to town on Sunday. I never did know why she went to town that way.
"That selling was awful and crowds come to see how they sell. They acted like it was a picnic. Some women was always there, come with their husbands. Some women sold slaves and some bought them.
"I never did see none sell naked. I seen men took from their wives and mothers and children. Let me tell you they didn't have no squalling around or they would get took off and a beating.
"Master Alex Buntin was Dr. Buntin. He said, 'I worked like one of my slaves and bought my slaves with what I made and I am not going to have them 'bused by the patrollers. George and Kit and Johnson was his cousins. Kit wasn't so good to his slaves.
"It was my job to brush the flies off the table. I had a fly brush. I would eat out of Bob's and Fannie's plates. Miss Sue say, 'Bell, I'm going to whoop you.' I say, 'Miss Sue, please don't, I'm hungry too.' She say, 'You stop playing and eat first next time.' Then she'd put some more on their plates. We sat on a bench at the table. We et the same the white folks did all cooked up together.
"One time Dr. Buntin got awful mad. The dogs found some whiskey in a cave one of his slaves had hid there. They would steal and hide it in a cave. He got a beating and they washed it in salt water to keep them from getting sore and stiff.
"Some folks kept dogs trained to hunt runaway niggers. They was fat, and you better not hit one or hurt it if it did bite or you would git a awful beating.
"Master Alex was a legislator. He had to leave when the Yankees come through. They killed all the legislators. I loved him. He run a store and we three children went to the store to see him nearly every day. He took us all three on his knees at the some time. I loved him. When he was gone, I said, 'Miss Sue, where is Master Alex?' She say, 'Maybe he be back pretty soon.' While he was gone they had a battle in a little skirt of woods close by. We hung to Miss Sue's skirt tail. I seen the Yankees run by on horses and some walking. Mr. Jordan, a southern soldier, was shot in his ribs. Mr. Buford was shot in his knee. Some of the other southern soldiers drug them up to our house. Miss Sue nursed them. I think they got well and went home.
"Three days before Master Alex left they sent all the stock off and put the turkeys and geese under the house, and chickens too. It was dark so they kept pretty quiet. When the Yankees got there they stripped the smoke-house. We had a lots of meat and they busted the storehouse open and strowed (strewed) meat and flour all along the road. They hired Mammy (Charlotte) to cook a big meal for them. She told the man she was 'fraid Miss Sue whoop her. He said, 'Whooping time near 'bout out.' He asked her 'bout some chickens but she wasn't goin' to tell him 'cause it was her living too for them to waste up. They never found the geese, turkeys, and chickens. They rambled all through the house looking for Master Alex and went through every drawer and closet upstairs and down. It was scandalous. They had Miss Sue walking and crying and us three children clinging to her skirt tail scared to death and crying too. When they left, the big lieutenant rode off ahead on a fine gray horse. They come back when we just got the table sot and et every crumb of our dinner. They was a lively gang. I hate 'em. I was hungry. Rations was scarce. They wasted the best we had. Master Alex hod three stores and he kept the middle one.
"Mistress told all Master Alex's slaves they had been freed. The men all left. My mother left and took me. I got mad and went back and lived there till I married. Master Alex come back after two weeks. My mother soon died after the surrender. She died at Batesville, Mississippi. Lots of the slaves died. Their change of living killed lots of 'em. My father lived on Sam Bronoy's (Branough's) place. Master Alex wanted to buy him but he took him on to Texas before I was born. I never did see him.
"I been farming, cooking, wash and iron along. I been in Arkansas twelve or fourteen years.
"How am I supported? I'm not much supported. My boy don't have work much of the time. I don't get the pension. I trusts in the Lord. I belong to New Bethel Baptist Church down here.
"TimesóI don't know what to think. My race is the under folks and I don't never say nothing to harm 'em. I'm one of 'em. Times is hardest in my life. I have to sit. I can't walk a stepócreeping paralysis."
Source: Arkansas Slave Narratives