George Henderson

In this excerpt, the interviewer recounts formerly enslaved person George Henderson’s memories of education, religion and emancipation in the first person.   
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…I saw the slaves in chains after they were sold. The white folks did not teach us to read and write. We had church on the plantation but we went from one plantation to another to hear preaching. White folks preacher’s name was Reuben Lee, in Versailles [Kentucky]. A meeting of the Baptist Church resulted in the first baptizing I ever saw. It was in Mr. Chillers pond. The preacher would say ‘I am baptizing you in Mr. Chillers pond because I know he is an honest man’…

…When the news came we were freed everybody was glad. The slaves cleared up the ground and cut down trees. Stayed with Master Cleveland the first year after the war. Have heard the Ku Klux Klan ride down the road, wearing masks. None ever bothered me or any of Master Clevelands slaves…

Formerly enslaved person
Birth Year (Age)Interviewer
WPA Volunteer
Enslaver’s Name
George Henderson1860 (Unknown)Eliza IsonMilford Twiman
Interview LocationResidence StateBirth Location
Garrard County, KYKYVersailles, KY
Themes & KeywordsAdditional Tags:
Religion, Education, Emancipation, LiteracyWoodford County, First Person