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Slave Narrative of Rosa Starke

Interviewer: W. W. Dixon Person Interviewed: Rosa Starke Location: Winnsboro, South Carolina Date of Birth: 1854 Age: 83 Occupation: Farm work, hoeing and picking cotton. Rosa’s grandfather was a slave of Solicitor Starke. Although she has had two husbands since slavery, she has thrown their names into the discard and goes by the name of Rosa Starke. She lives in a three-room frame house with her son, John Harrison, two miles south of Winnsboro, S.C., on the plantation of Mrs. Rebecca V. Woodward. She still does farm work, hoeing and picking cotton. “They say I was six years old when de war commence poppin’ in Charleston. Mammy and pappy say dat I was born on de Graham place, one of de nineteen plantations of my old marster, Nick Peay, in 1854. My pappy was name Bob and my mammy name Salina. They had b’longed to old Marse Tom Starke befo’ old Marse Nick bought them. My brudders was name Bob and John. I had a sister name Carrie. They was all older than me. “My marster, Nick Peay, had nineteen places, wid a overseer and slave quarters on every place. Folks dat knows will tell you, dis day, dat them nineteen plantations, in all, was twenty-seven thousand acres. He had a thousand slaves, more or less, too many to take a census of. Befo’ de numerator git ’round, some more would be born or bought, and de nominator had to be sent ’round by Marse Nick, so old Miss Martha, our mistress, say. Her never could know just how many ’twas. Folks used to come to see her and...

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