Page, Annie (stories)
The following data is extracted from Arkansas Slave Narratives.
FOLKLORE SUBJECTS Name of interviewer: Mrs. Bernice Bowden Subject: Apparitions Subject: Superstitions Subject: Birthmarks Story:-Information
This information given by: Annie Page Place of residence: 412-1/2 Pullen Street, Pine Bluff, Arkansas Occupation: None Age: 86 [TR: Information moved from bottom of first page.] [TR: Repetitive information deleted from subsequent pages.]
"I told 'bout old master's death. Mama had done sent me out to feed the chickens soon of a morning.
"Here was the smokehouse and there was a turkey in a coop. And when I throwed it the feed I heard somethin' sounded just like you was draggin' a brush over leaves. It come around the corner of the smokehouse and look like a tall woman. It kept on goin' toward the house till it got to the hickory nut tree and still sound like draggin' a brush. When it got to the hickory nut tree it changed and look like a man. I looked and I said, 'It's old master.' And the next day he got killed. I run to the house and told mama, 'Look at that man.' She said, 'Shut your mouth, you don't see no man.' Old miss heard and said, 'Who do you s'pose it could be?' But mama wouldn't let me talk.
"But I know it was a sign that old master was goin' to die."
"I was born with a caul over my face. Old miss said it hung from the top of my head half way to my waist.
"She kept it and when I got big enough she said, 'Now that's your veil, you play with it.'
"But I lost it out in the orchard one day.
"They said it would keep you from seein' ha'nts."
"William Jimmerson's wife had a daughter was born blind, and she said it was her husband's fault. She was delicate, you know, and one afternoon she was layin' down and I was sittin' there fannin' her with a peafowl fan. Her husband was layin' there too and I guess I must a nodded and let the fan drop down in his face. He jumped up and pressed his thumbs on my eyes till they was all bloodshot and when he let loose I fell down on the floor. Miss Phenie said, 'Oh, William, don't do that.' I can remember it just as well.
"My eyes like to went out and do you know, when her baby was born it was blind. It's eyes just looked like two balls of blood. It died though, just lived 'bout two weeks."
Source: Arkansas Slave Narratives