Interview with Maria White

Interview with Maria White ; formerly enslaved woman, Maria White, account of child care work and thoughts on female owner

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Interview with Maria White ; formerly enslaved woman, Maria White, account of child care work and thoughts on female owner

Click to view full transcription

Interview with Maria White

Maria White, a formerly enslaved woman, recalls her life and the work of other enslaved women in this excerpt from an interview by Federal Writers' Project in the 1930’s.

“She took me in the house to learn me how to nurse the baby. She sure was a fractious lady. When I didn’t do things to suit her she would whack me over the head with what ever she had in her hand.” 

“Old Aunt Minta cooked for all the slaves. She fed all the children before night so they would rest well. My grandma, Charity, and my ma did the spinning of the thread and the measuring of the cloth. They had a big loom that the cloth was made on.”

The original interview transcripts are on fragile notebook paper. A copy is displayed here.

Federal Writers’ Project Narratives by Formerly Enslaved Peoples Collection, Archie Givens, Sr. Collection of African American Literature

Univsersity of Minnesota Libraries



"Proper" Employment
Interview with Maria White