From the WPA Slave Narratives:
Levi Ashley lives about two miles northeast of Liberty in Amite County. He is very old and somewhat feeble.
“My name is Levi Ashley. I don’t know how old I is, but I was tol’ I was nine year old when I was sot free. Yes-sum, I ‘member a heap ’bout de War. I was born on de Atacha-falaya River in Louisiana, on Mr. Dan McCraney’s plantation. No’m, I don’t know whut parish. Mr. Dan had a lot of slaves, an’ he an’ his wife, Miss Elviry, sho’ was mean an’ hard on ’em. All his cullud folks said he was hard an’ laid de lash heavy. Dey tell me de levee broke, an’ Marse Dan tuk ever’thing he had an’ moved over in East Feliciana Parish, I reckon ’bout five or eight miles frum Baton Rouge.
“Marse Dan owned a man an’ his wife, name Rich an’ Viney. Dey was good Christian people. Dey was Baptist, an’ Marse Dan wouldn’ let none of his slaves go to chu’ch. So dese darkies had prayer meetin’ in dey home. Marse Dan hear’d ’bout it an’ whupped ’em. Dey done it ag’in, an’ he called ’em out to be whupped. Marse Dan sai, ‘Rich an’ Viney, didn’ I tell you I’se gwine whup you ever’ time I hear’d of you prayin’?’
“Dey said, ‘Yessir, but you can whup us ever’ day, but you can’t make us stop prayin’ to my Jesus.’
“Well, Marse Dan said to Miss Elviry, ‘Whut mus’ I do wid ’em?’ Miss Elviry said, ‘Sot ’em free,’ an’ den she walked off.
“Marse Dan sot ’em free. Den when de levee broke an’ he moved off, he lef’ ’em to drown. Nobody ever knowed whut become of ’em. Maybe dey drowned an’ maybe dey got outer dat high water.