“My mammy was name Ann, an’ I was tol’ my daddy was name Ashley. He lived on   another man’s plantation. I never seed him. My mammy died when I was small an’   my Aunt Clarissy tuk me in charge. My aunt was de cook, an’ she brung me up in   de white folk’s kitchen. Grown folks could stan’ up in de fireplace, it was so   tall. Yessum, dat kitchen was ‘way off frum de house. It had iron rods hangin’   frum de top of de fireplace wid chains hangin’ down fer pots an’ pans. Dey   cooks on de fireplace. Dey bakes bread an’ cake in a oven wid three legs. De   white folks had good things to eat, an’ sometime I would slip a li’l of de   cake er pie an’ den I was sho’ to be whupped if my aunt tol’ on me. De white   folks had silver spoons an’ forks to eat wid, but de slaves had to eat wid   mussel shells fer spoons, an’ we sopped our gravy wid our bread.



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