Location: Caldwell County KY

Slave Narrative of George Fortman

Interviewer: Lauana Creel Person Interviewed: George Fortman Location: Evansville, Indiana Place of Residence: Cor. Bellemeade Ave. and Garvin St. Evansville, Indiana Occupation: Professor of faith in Christ, Janitor Ex-Slave Stories District 5 Vanderburgh County Lauana Creel INDIANS MADE SLAVES AMONG THE NEGROES. INTERVIEWS WITH GEORGE FORTMAN Cor. Bellemeade Ave. and Garvin St. Evansville, Indiana, and other interested citizens “The story of my life, I will tell to you with sincerest respect to all and love to many, although reviewing the dark trail of my childhood and early youth causes me great pain.” So spoke George Fortman, an aged man and former slave, although the history of his life reveals that no Negro blood runs through his veins. “My story necessarily begins by relating events which occurred in 1838, when hundreds of Indians were rounded up like cattle and driven away from the valley of the Wabash. It is a well known fact recorded in the histories of Indiana that the long journey from the beautiful Wabash Valley was a horrible experience for the fleeing Indians, but I have the tradition as relating to my own family, and from this enforced flight ensued the tragedy of my birth.” The aged ex-slave reviews tradition. “My two ancestors, John Hawk, a Blackhawk Indian brave, and Racheal, a Chackatau maiden had made themselves a home such as only Indians know, understand and enjoy....

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Slave Narrative of Betty Jones

Interviewer: Lauana Creel Person Interviewed: Elizabeth Jones Location: 429 Oak Street, Evansville, Indiana Ex-Slave Stories District No. 5 Vanderburgh County Lauana Creel THE STORY OF BETTY JONES 429 Oak Street, Evansville, Ind. From an Interview with Elizabeth Jones at 429 Oak Street, Evansville, Ind. “Yes Honey, I was a slave, I was born at Henderson, Kentucky and my mother was born there. We belonged to old Mars John Alvis. Our home was on Alvis’s Hill and a long plank walk had been built from the bank of the Ohio river to the Alvis home. We all liked the long plank walk and the big house on top of the hill was a pretty place.” Betty Jones said her master was a rich man and had made his money by raising and selling slaves. She only recalls two house servants were mulatoes. All the other slaves were black as they could be. Betty Alvis lived with her parents in a cabin near her master’s home on the hill. She recalls no unkind treatment. “Our only sorrow was when a crowd of our slave friends would be sold off, then the mothers, brothers, sisters, and friends always cried a lot and we children would grieve to see the grief of our parents.” The mother of Betty was a slave of John Alvis and married a slave of her master. The family...

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The Missing Man

The Missing Man: “In 1860 Mr. Jess Stevens owned a negro slave, and his wife. Jess Williams, who lived in the north end of the county, bought the old slave, but did not buy his wife. “One day one of Jess William’s boys went to Edward Stevens and an argument followed, causing Mr. Stevens to shoot him in the arm. Later Jess Williams took the old negro and went to the field where Edward Stevens and the boy were planting corn. They hid behind a tree and the negro was given the gun and was told to shoot when Stevens came down the road by them. “He came by slowly covering corn but the negro did not shoot. Williams said, “Why didn’t you shoot?” and the negro replied, “Massie, I just didn’t have da heart.” Williams said, “If you don’t shoot next time, I’m going to shoot you.” When Stevens started by the negro shot and killed him, tearing his hoe handle into splinters. One day a salesman, who rode a fine horse and had a beautiful saddle came to Princeton and later went to the Williams home. Several days later his people got anxious about him, and after checking up they found that he was last seen going into the Williams home. Several days later his people found his hat floating upon a pond near the house, and...

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Slave Narrative of Esther Hudespeth

Interviewer: Mary E. O’Malley Person Interviewed: Esther Hudespeth Location: Kentucky The following story was given by a colored woman, Esther Hudespeth, who was once sold as a slave. It was told to her by her slave mother in 1840. “A long time ago there lived a rabbit and a coon. They lived so close together. One morning Mr. Coon came by after Mr. Rabbit, and wanted him to go over to see some girls with him. So Mr. Rabbit agreed and went with Mr. Coon. Mr. Coon and the girls had some fun making fun of Mr. Rabbit’s short tail. Mr. Rabbit was very glad when the time came for him to go home, because he was tired of being talked about. Mr. Coon had to go get a drink of water, and Mr. Rabbit told the girls that Mr. Coon was his riding horse and he would ride him when he came back. By the time he got thru telling the girls, Mr. Coon called to Mr. Rabbit that he was ready to go. Mr. Coon had enjoyed himself so much, while Mr. Rabbit had not. The next day Mr. Coon came by for Mr. Rabbit to go with him to see the girls. Mr. Rabbit played sick. I am too sick to walk over there, he said. Mr. Coon said, I will carry you on my back...

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Slave Narrative of Easter Sudie Campbell

Interviewer: Mamie Hanbery Person Interviewed: Easter Sudie Campbell Location: Hopkinsville, Kentucky Place of Residence: Princeton, Caldwell Co., Kentucky Age: 72 Place of Residence: Webber St., Hopkinsville, Ky CHRISTIAN CO. (Mamie Hanbery) [HW: Ky 3] Story of Easter Sudie Campbell, (age about 72, Webber St., Hopkinsville, Ky.) Born in Princeton, Caldwell Co., Kentucky, her parents were slaves, the property of Will and Martha Grooms of Princeton. Aunt Easter as she is called has followed the profession of a mid-wife for forty years. She is still active and works at present among the negroes of Hopkinsville. “Yes, sho, I make my own medicines, humph, dat aint no trouble. I cans cure scrofula wid burdock root and one half spoon of citrate of potash. Jes make a tea of burdock root en add the citrate of potash to hit. Sasafras is good foh de stomach en cleans yer out good. I’se uses yeller percoon root foh de sore eyes. “Wen I stayed wid Mrs. Porter her chaps would break out mighty bad wid sores in de fall of de year and I’se told Mrs. Porter I’se could core dat so I’se got me some elder berries en made pies out of hit en made her chaps eat hit on dey war soon cored. “If twont foh de white folks I sho would hev a hard time. My man he jes wen erway...

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Biography of James Littlefield

JAMES LITTLEFIELD. The subject of this sketch was for a number of years one among the many successful farmers of Baxter County, Arkansas, and is as conspicuous for his outspoken views in sanctioning that which is just and right as in his denunciation of that which he considers unjust and wrong. He is an intelligent citizen, and he wields considerable influence in the affairs of his section. He was born in Spartanburg District, South Carolina, April 4, 1829, a son of Joseph Littlefield, who was also a native of the Palmetto State. He moved to Caldwell County, Kentucky, when his son James was a lad, and there he engaged in tilling the soil until his removal to Arkansas in 1859, his death occurring here in 1880, when nearly ninety years of age. He was first a Whig but afterward a Democrat in politics. His wife, Sarah Harris, was born in South Carolina, was married there, but died in Arkansas in 1862 when sixty-three years of age. They were members of the Primitive Baptist Church, and became the parents of six children, of whom the subject of this sketch was the fifth, and three of whom are now living: Ellen is the widow of David T. Colley, and resides in Lawrence County, Missouri; Sarah Ann is the widow of Madison L. Ford, and lives in Scottsburgh, Caldwell County, Kentucky, and...

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Biography of Dr. George W. Thompson

DR. GEORGE W. THOMPSON. Dr. George W. Thompson is a successful follower of Aesculapius at Cave Creek, Arkansas, and through ability and well merited success has built up a practice that is eminently satisfactory. He is a product of Caldwell County, Kentucky, born in 1836, and the son of William R. Thompson who was born in Claiborne County, Tennessee, in 1807. The father was liberally educated in his native State and was there married to Miss Elizabeth Wells, also of Tennessee, and a lady of more than ordinary intelligence. She was born in Knox County in 1809. About 1834 the parents removed to Caldwell County, Kentucky, and in 1854 came by wagon to Monroe County, Arkansas, but after remaining there a short time removed to Lawrence County, where Mr. Thompson died in 1855. Four years later the mother received her final summons and both are interred in that county. She was a worthy member of the Baptist Church. Mr. Thompson followed the occupation of a blacksmith and wagonmaker and was an industrious, hardworking citizen. Our subject’s grandfather, Ephraim Thompson, was probably born in the highlands of Scotland, and when but a boy came to America, locating in east Tennessee. He was a soldier in the War of 1812, and an officer. His death occurred in Mobile, Ala., and his wife passed away in Knox County, Tennessee James Wells, the...

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Biography of James H. French

JAMES H. FRENCH. The agricultural part of any community is the bone and sinew from which comes the strength and vigor necessary to carry on the affairs of manufacture, commerce and the State. When the farming people are composed of men and women of courage, enterprise, intelligence and integrity, prosperity will attend all departments of activity, and this is preminently the case in Christian County, Missouri, and among those who hold high rank as a tiller of the soil is Mr. French, who springs from one of the pioneer families of this section. He is the youngest but one of the children born to Joseph and Lucy (Scott) French, his birth occurring in Caldwell County, Kentucky, August 28, 1851. He was but an infant when his parents came overland to what is now Christian County, and here was reared to manhood on the old home place and attended the school of his neighborhood, the same being known as the “Dillingham School House.” In 1872, or when twenty-one years of age, young French started out to fight his own way in life, which thus far has been passed in agricultural pursuits, as it is but natural that he should choose that as his occupation. The same year that he branched out for himself, he wedded Miss Anna Smallwood, a native of Illinois, born in 1854, and the daughter of Vincent...

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Biography of William French

WILLIAM FRENCH. The French family are among the prominent of the early families of Christian County, Missouri, and have for many years ranked among the leading agriculturists, in following which calling the male members of the family have been pronouncedly successful. William French, one of the early citizens of the county near Billings, is a native of Kentucky, born in Caldwell County, in 1835, to the union of Joseph and Lucy (Scott) French. The father was also a native of Kentucky and was a son of William and Jane (Ross) French, the former a descendant of German ancestors. The French family came to the United States at an early day and made their home in the South until about 1800, when they came to Kentucky. They became very prominent there. The grandmother of our subject had seven brothers in the Revolutionary War. Joseph French, father of our subject, was reared in the Blue Grass State and remained there until 1851, when he came to Missouri, locating in Greene County (now Christian County ), where he took up Government land. This place was located about two and a half miles from Billings. He had married Miss Scott in Kentucky and their union was blessed by the birth of ten children, seven of whom are living: William, subject; Irene M., Joseph, Sarah J., Adelia C., Polly P., George, James, John and...

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Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records

1790 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records Free 1790 Census Form for your Research Hosted at Ancestry.com – 14 Days Free Hosted at Census Guide 1800 U.S. Census Guide 1800 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records Free 1800 Census Form for your Research Hosted at Ancestry.com – 14 Days Free Hosted at Census Guide 1800 U.S. Census Guide 1810 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records Free 1810 Census Form for your Research Hosted at Ancestry.com – 14 Days Free Hosted at Census Guide 1810 U.S. Census Guide 1820 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records Free 1820 Census Form for your Research Hosted at Ancestry.com – 14 Days Free 1820 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Images $ Hosted at Census Guide 1820 U.S. Census Guide 1830 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records Free 1830 Census Form for your Research Hosted at Ancestry.com – 14 Days Free 1830 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Images $ Hosted at Census Guide 1830 U.S. Census Guide 1840 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records Free 1840 Census Form for your Research Hosted at Ancestry.com – 14 Days Free 1840 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Images $ Hosted at Census Guide 1840 U.S. Census Guide 1850 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Records Hosted at Free 1850 Census Form for your Research Hosted at Ancestry.com – 14 Days Free 1850 Caldwell County, Kentucky Census Images $ 1850 Caldwell County, Kentucky Slave Schedule $ Hosted at Census Guide...

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Biographical Sketch of Jacob Maggard

Jacob Maggard residing near Anaheim, was born in Caldwell County, Kentucky, August 12, 1815. His parents,. Jacob and Susan (Bright) Maggard, natives respectively of Virginia and Tennessee, had ten children, he being the fifth. At the age of twenty years he started out in life for himself by working by the day in Scotland County, Missouri, whither his father had moved fifteen years previously. He was reared principally in Randolph County, Missouri. He continued in his calling as a farmer, in which he was successful, until about twelve years ago, when he came to California and purchased property in Sonoma County. More recently he purchased his present residence, where he will spend the evening of his life. He and his wife have long been earnest workers in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and are exemplary in their conduct as Christians. Mr. Maggard was married in Missouri, February 11, 1841, to Elizabeth Myers, a native of that State, and a daughter of Henry and Catharine Myers. Theirs was the first recorded marriage in Scotland County. They have five children: Irvine J., M. D., of Oxford, Kansas; James A., M. D., of Denver, Colorado; William F., M. D., of Corning, California; Emma, wife of Sidney Holman; and Sarah Frances,...

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Biography of Hon. Orlando B. Ficklin

Hon. Orlando B. Ficklin, attorney at law, Charleston; he was born in Kentucky Dec. 16, 1808, being the son of William and Elizabeth Kenner (Williams) Ficklin, both of Virginia. His early education was obtained in country schools, in Kentucky and Missouri, except about one year, which he spent at Cumberland College, located at Princeton, Caldwell Co., Ky., under the auspices of the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. His parents having removed to Potosi, Washington Co., Mo., he commenced the study of law with Henry Shurlds of that place, who was afterward elected to the Circuit Court bench, and at a later period removed to St. Louis and engaged in banking until his death; Mr. Ficklin spent the winter of 1829 and 1830 in the law office of Gen. Robert Farris, of St. Louis; in March, 1830, he was admitted to the bar at Bellville, St. Clair Co., Ill., having been examined by Edward Cowles, then an old and well-established lawyer of that place; from thence he went to McLeansboro, Hamilton Co., Ill., meeting there with Chief Justice William Wilson, who advised him to locate in Mount Carmel, Wabash Co., Ill.; Mr. Ficklin attended the courts of that circuit commencing at Carmi, and when the circuit closed, he located at Mt. Carmel. In 1832, he went to the Black Hawk war in Capt. Elias Jurdon’s Company, and at the organization of the...

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Coal Mine Slaves

CALDWELL CO. (Mary E. O’Malley) [HW: Ky 6] Coal Mine Slaves: In 1836 large numbers of slaves were brought into Caldwell and worked by the owners of the ore mines, which necessitated extra patrols, interfered with local workmen, and so on. The taxpayers complained to the Legislature and an extra tax was allowed to be levied for the benefit of the county. In other books we find that the owners of the slaves who worked in these mines was President Andrew Jackson who brought his slaves from Nashville to the iron and lead mines in Caldwell and Crittenden counties; he is said to have made several trips himself to these...

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