Dreaming Life is Fine, Fine as Honeydew Wine…

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I walked down the dusty road toward Flint Creek; I sat on the bridge, muddy rushing water twenty feet below the bridge. I was a motherless child, I could not think, I slid with ease off the rough planks into the Creek; I sank.

I broke the muddy water with unrestrained speed, I rose from the dank depths and gasp for air, the second time I emerged I swam to the slippery bank heaved myself onto its clay sides and I cried. The water was cold; I wiped the tears from my eyes, if it had not been for the Angel I would have died.

Yes, there beneath the cold muddy water swam an Angel, she smiled shaking her head; go home she spoke softly in my ear, life is not always fair but you have nothing to fear.

I was at the fork of the road, one road lead home the other up the mountain where the sheer cliffs towered over the land. I stood there, I hollered, I stood there and I cried; I was a motherless child.

 

©2017.elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

 

 

https://www.amazon.com/Honeysuckle-Memories-Ann-Johnson-murphree/dp/150029070X/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Asterial-Thoughts-Journey-into-Thought/dp/1540862356/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Rutted-Roads-Collections-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1532909365/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF81

https://www.amazon.com/Journey-into-Art-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500502960/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Sachet-Poetry-Adoration-Aspirations-Asylums/dp/1500483354/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Voices-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500426709/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Echoing-Images-Soul-Journey-into/dp/1500366811/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Reflections-Poetry-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500168645/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8 

 

HEADLINES…

womanwriterblogAs I read the morning “Headlines” those listed below are the ones that I was scanning. If you the 2017 headlines be ready to find yourself in a depressed mood with headlines discussing everything from Trump to the killing spree by deranged people.  Nevertheless, there are fewer headlines just a mere 17 years ago in 2000…What has happen to the world in those 17 years? I am certain there were more good headlines than bad. I have a 5-year-old great grandson, what is this world going to be when he reaches 17 years old?
I find myself at an age where I know there has been bad over the span of my life, but never like it has changed now. Occasionally, one may have heard of a civilian being shot with a gun, not dozens of them. I am too old to be afraid, yet I fear for my children and everyone else in this mixed up world.
Whether you are religious or not, let us take time today to say to ourselves stop this madness before it is too late. EA

Headlines: November 2017

NBC analysis: GOP tax plan could save Trump and his family more than $1 billion.
Climate talks close with Trump standing alone.
U.S. towns, cities fear taxpayer revolt if Republicans kill deduction.
Downing North Korean Missiles Is Hard. So the U.S. Is Experimenting.
Defrocked priest charged with 31 counts of sex abuse.
Donald Trump’s Sexual Assault Accusers Demand Justice in the #MeToo Era: ‘We Were Forgotten’.
Two children killed when sheriff’s vehicle hits pedestrians in Los Angeles.
California shooting rampage highlights “ghost guns
Police: ‘Miracle’ more were not shot by rifle-toting man
Boy orphaned by California shooting knew the man who killed his family.
Rancho Tehama gunman targeted wife, neighbor before attacking passersby at random.

 

 

Headlines: November 2000
Elian Gonzalez The young castaway, whose American odyssey became a metaphor for the changing relationship between the United States and Communist Cuba.
USS Cole bombing Slipping through security in a small boat, terrorists carry out a suicide explosives attack on the U.S. Navy destroyer USS Cole in Yemen, killing 17 sailors.
Soaring oil prices U.S. multinational corporations are walloped by rising oil prices that surge to more than $30 a barrel
Firestone recall The government orders Bridgestone/Firestone to recall more than 6.5 million tires.
Ruling to split Microsoft A federal judge orders Microsoft Corp. split in two, declaring the software giant an “untrustworthy” monopoly.
Genetic advance The biotechnology company Celera Genomics and the publicly funded Human Genome Project announce that they each completed draft versions of the human genetic code.
Joyous Y2K The world welcomes the new millennium with South Sea islanders singing Handel’s Hallelujah chorus and Americans sporting Y2K eyewear in New York’s Times Square. Humanity also breathes a little easier as 1999-to-2000 date changes fail to cause any major disruptions of the world’s major computer systems.
Tobacco verdict The tobacco industry suffers a loss in a class-action case as jurors order companies them to pay $144 billion in punitive damages to Florida smokers

The Aunts – A Short-Short Story

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The Aunt’s and the “World’s Oldest Profession”
A True Short-Short Story…

 
In the early 1800s, the hectic harbor in Mobile, Alabama was bustling with upriver planters who came to town for the annual cotton-marketing season. Along the waterfront a variety of establishments from boarding houses, hotels, saloons and other places know as the gentlemen’s entertaining facilities, as a group they were known as “Shakespeare’s Row”. During the South’s Antebellum Era prostitution ranked right up there with vagrancy and public intoxication. It later became a prohibition of any disorderly behavior public or privately. The fines for “keeping a disorderly house” ranged from $10 to $25; there were no consistent laws on the subject.

 
It was during mid-1850, when my Aunt Molly and Modena Veste found themselves visiting a distant cousin in Mobile near the waterfront. They had inherited a hotel outside Birmingham, Alabama and after working night and day for months decided to give themselves a vacation. Leaving the Veste Hotel in the capable hands of their hired staff off the two went on their seashore retreat.

 
It was toward the end of their stay when they ventured onto the waterfront and Shakespeare’s Row. Neither Molly nor Modena wavered from having a good time. When they inherited their Aunt Ira’s Hotel the entire family encouraged them to turn their lives around and make a living running the upper-class establishment.
It was during that trip to Mobil that the idea of turning the Veste Hotel into a “Gentleman’s Club” became a reality. They did not identify themselves with the Shakespeare Row prostitutes, but they did discover since their youth their need to pander with men.

 
These two young women catered to the wealthy, cards, cigars and liquor became the enticement. Upon paying a substantial monthly fee to join, a daily fee deposited at the door would give the gentleman their choice of available “Ladies of Pleasure” or “Ladies of Easy Virtue” for one hour. The city agreed to turn their heads to these nightly “Whore Parties” for a reasonable tax! A wink and a nod condoned and protected prostitution at the Veste Hotel for almost 50 years.

 
Therefore, Miss Molly and Miss Modena brought the red-light district to Northern Alabama. It was one of the few buildings left standing when Yankee troops pilfered their way through the south. The women that worked in the hotel were not cheap, but to test the virtuous caverns of the Veste sisters’ could be costly.

 

2017©elizabethannjohnsonmurphree

The Chickasaw – Part 10

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The Chickasaw – Part 10

 

The war would soon be over, Pap had not returned to Chadwick since he left; he rode into Decatur, Alabama on a sway back mule. His horse of many years was dead; he stole the mule from a sharecropper close to the Tennessee River and rode toward Decatur. The company he scouted for was now somewhere over on the Georgia line.
Pap received no more than a glance as darkness set in; he pulled the old mule into the river holding onto the bridle, he guided the mule between the Railroad Bridge and old bridge linking the North side of the river held by the Yankees and to the South side guarded by the Confederates’. When he reached the other side, he walked into a Yankee camp all eyes and guns were on him.
He would be considered a traitor in the eyes of the Confederates’ and the Northern troops as well. Seeing that he was a scout they allowed him to sit by their fire to dry his clothes and eat; something he had not done in a week.
Pap road across the Tennessee River Bridge into Decatur to gather all the information he could; then road back without any trouble. The stench of the town was terrible; he held a bag filled with cleansing Sage to his nose. He thought of Chadwick and Jane.
This will be the last posting of The Chickasaw; other works will fill the pages for my great supporters.
Story Resources:
Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton” 1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was intact, she never forgot anything, It was her body that was ready for death; she lay down for an afternoon nap and woke only to say goodbye to the grandson she raised as she took her last breath, speaking softly to my father.
Grandson – Roy C. Johnson
Granddaughter – Vina Evans-Quinn
Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree Great – Granddaughter

 

BOOKS AVAILABLE ON AMAZON.COM

 

 

https://www.amazon.com/Honeysuckle-Memories-Ann-Johnson-murphree/dp/150029070X/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Asterial-Thoughts-Journey-into-Thought/dp/1540862356/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Rutted-Roads-Collections-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1532909365/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF81

https://www.amazon.com/Journey-into-Art-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500502960/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Sachet-Poetry-Adoration-Aspirations-Asylums/dp/1500483354/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Voices-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500426709/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Echoing-Images-Soul-Journey-into/dp/1500366811/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Reflections-Poetry-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500168645/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

 

The Chickasaw – Part 9

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Then War came to Chadwick Manor…

The State of Alabama declared that it had seceded from the United States of America on January 11, 1861.  Jane was thirteen-years-old; she had learned many things like gracefulness and proper manners; Sipsee had succeeded in keeping her daughter from the Master, now she had to worry about the soldiers both Union and Southern, neither respected women.  She and her mother were happy when it ended; Jane was seventeen-years-old.   She would only say up to the end of her life that the greed of the white man would be his downfall.  Sipsee and Jane remain in the Chickasaw village until the War ended.

It was there that Jane met Pap, he was an Indian Scout for the South, and Jane just becoming a young woman and no longer referred to as a child was smitten by him.  Sipsee did not care for him as he was twenty years older than Jane was; Sipsee hoped that he would not come back; Jane felt a sadness she could not explain.  Sipsee considered Jane still a child and to Jane he was some sort of God, a Warrior like her father fighting for the South.

Sipsee did not see him as a great Warrior and neither did the other people in the slave quarters; at best he was to laid-back and lazy, he went from family to family in cabins to be fed.  Yet, he never contributed to the quarters, no deer, rabbit, nothing.  He seems to slip in and out, as he pleased.

Pap had his own story; he had been a scout for the Southern Army, it was apparent that the South was falling, hunger, no coats or fires to keep away the cold nights. To have a fire could be deadly.  He had witnessed much during the past four years, it was his job to go ahead and scout out the “Yankee” camps.  There they were tents and fires to keep out the cold nights; he could smell the food being cooked or roasted over the fire and he was always hungry.  He had been issued a rifle but was weary of using it to draw attention; he had no bow and arrows (only a romantic notion by the whites), his silent weapons were his knife and a hatchet.  He was good at catching game but it would not be wise to make a fire inside enemy lines.

It was close to the end of the war, Pap had not returned to Chadwick since he left; he rode into Decatur, Alabama bareback on a sway back mule.  His horse had been shot out from under him in a getaway on his last scouting trip; he stole the mule from a sharecropper close to the Tennessee River and rode toward Decatur.  The company he scouted for was now somewhere over on the Georgia line.

Pap received no more than a glance as darkness set in; he pulled the old mule into the river holding onto the bridle, he guided the mule between the railroad and old bridge linking the North side of the river held by the Yankees and to the South side guarded by the Confederates’.  When he reached the other side, he walked into a Yankee camp all eyes and guns were on him.

To be continued…

Story Resources:

Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton” 1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was intact, she never forgot anything, It was her body that was ready for death; she lay down for an afternoon nap and woke only to say goodbye to the grandson she raised as she took her last breath, speaking softly to my father.

Grandson – Roy C. Johnson

Granddaughter – Vina Evans-Quinn

Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree Great – Granddaughter

BOOKS AT AMAZON.COM BY ELIZABETH ANN JOHNSON-MURPHREE

https://www.amazon.com/Honeysuckle-Memories-Ann-Johnson-murphree/dp/150029070X/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8/

https://www.amazon.com/Asterial-Thoughts-Journey-into-Thought/dp/1540862356/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Rutted-Roads-Collections-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1532909365/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF81

https://www.amazon.com/Journey-into-Art-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500502960/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Sachet-Poetry-Adoration-Aspirations-Asylums/dp/1500483354/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Voices-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500426709/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Echoing-Images-Soul-Journey-into/dp/1500366811/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Reflections-Poetry-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500168645/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Chickasaw – Part 8

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The Chickasaw – Part 8

Sipsee and Jane thought life at Chadwick Manor was worse than they could have imagined witnessing pain and sorrow.  They also learned to live in a world where freedom was recognized only by the color of one’s skin; they learned that the world they lived in showed hatred for both the Negro and the Indian people.  The Indians were mostly free in many of the states that withdrew from the Union.

They would learn how to survive…

Jane had wonderful memories of her mother and father; she also had nightmares of seeing her father killed and of the Master of Chadwick coming to their one room shanty during the night.  The sadness of moving from the forest onto land where she was surrounded by cotton, and living with her mother’s sadness, Jane knew that both she and her mother would need to learn a new way to survive.

As a favor to Sipsee, Mistress Chadwick-Alboin and Master Alboin allowed Jane to be schooled along with their daughter;  Jane learned  reading and writing, elegant manners.  Her mother told her that an education was the only way she would escape from being an Indian; Sipsee wanted her only child to do extremely well in this new land, to be accepted in any social setting.  Jane did want to learn the white man ways; she would never forget that she was the daughter of Hawk Over-Town.

Their home may have been a one room shanty in slave quarters, but it was home; Jane was a tall gangly girl that did not have the beauty of her mother, instead she was to bare the hard sculpted features of her father.  She felt safe when she and her mother were roaming the woods collecting herbs and plants for medicine.  Sipsee would teach Jane the ways of their people, the custom, the culture, they would grow strong and some day be more than slaves to rich landowners.  Sipsee wanted to see the day when she and her daughter did not have to address these people as Missus and Master.

Then War came to Chadwick Manor…

The State of Alabama declared that it had seceded from the United States of America on January 11, 1861.  Jane was thirteen-years-old; she had learned many things like gracefulness and proper manners; Sipsee had succeeded in keeping her daughter from the Master, now she had to worry about the soldiers both Union and Southern, neither respected women.  It was during the beginning of the war that Sipsee found out about other Chickasaw’s living in the area; the Mistress of Chadwick sent them there to be safe, neither side Union or Southern bothered the Indians.  When they arrived everyone greeted them, they were shown kindness; it would be their home until the War Between the States was over.

Jane right up to the end of her life would not talk about the War.  She and her mother were happy when it ended; Jane was seventeen-years-old.   She would only say that the greed of the white man would be their downfall.  Sipsee and Jane remain in the Chickasaw village when the War ended.

It was there that Jane met Pap.  He was a scout for the South, and Jane just became a teenager and was smitten by him.  Sipsee did not care for him as he was twenty years older than Jane was; Sipsee hoped that he would not come back; Jane felt a sadness she could not explain.  

To be continued…

Story Resources:

Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton” 1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was Like a steel trap, she never forgot anything, It was her body that was ready for death; she lay down for an afternoon nap and woke only to say goodbye to the grandson she raised, my father.

Grandson – Roy C. Johnson

Granddaughter – Vina Evans-Quinn

Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree Great – Granddaughter

 

BOOKS AT AMAZON.COM BY ELIZABETH ANN JOHNSON-MURPHREE

https://www.amazon.com/Honeysuckle-Memories-Ann-Johnson-murphree/dp/150029070X/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8/

https://www.amazon.com/Asterial-Thoughts-Journey-into-Thought/dp/1540862356/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Rutted-Roads-Collections-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1532909365/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF81

https://www.amazon.com/Journey-into-Art-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500502960/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Sachet-Poetry-Adoration-Aspirations-Asylums/dp/1500483354/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Voices-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500426709/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Echoing-Images-Soul-Journey-into/dp/1500366811/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Reflections-Poetry-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500168645/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

The Chickasaw – Part 7

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The Chickasaw – Part 7

Sipsee took hold of the horse carrying Hawk’s body and started the sorrowful procession deep into the forest.  The Indian families followed their song of death floated into the wind that was shaking the leaves and bending small branches.  They buried Hawk in the forest he loved.

Sipsee decided that she had to leave as quickly as possible, the logging cabin belonged to the Mill and they would want to hire another logger.  The Mill owner brought her a small wagon and she loaded it with the few belongings that they would need.  She gave horses to Hawks’ closest friends and hitched two of them up to the wagon.  Placing Jane on the seat, she pulled herself onto the wagon; Sipsee never looked back.  She took with her a letter of endorsement from the white woman that taught her English.  The letter was to be given to the woman’s sister farther down in Alabama Territory.  She promised Sipsee that she would find work there.

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Sipsee arrived in the late evening and was welcomed by all to Chadwick Manor; Beatrice Chadwick-Alboin was the owner with her husband Axial a chosen individual by her parents.  Sipsee was given a position serving the “Lady” of the house.  The “Master” kept commenting on Sipsee’ beauty; the Lady of the house chastised him and he walked away.  When she was given a tour of the house,  where she could or could not go, Sipsee thought the house would hold ten families.  Jane was also given a position; she would serve the only child they had, as would Sipsee in Jane’s absence.

After introductions to everyone in the house, Missus Chadwick called for the houseboy to show Sipsee where she and Jane would be living.  Both mother and daughter quickly discovered that they were to live in the Negro quarters.  Their lives and how they lived was not different than the slaves on Chadwick Manor other than they were free to come and go as they pleased.

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Sipsee thought often that this life was in many ways worse than the ones her family would be living on western lands; this life was witness to pain and sorrow.  Jane learned to live in a world free to practice the customs of her parents; she also learned the world of hate for both the Negro and the Indian people.

She would learn how to survive…

To be continued…

Authors Note:  I have tried to construct the stories about the Chickasaws’ told by Ma (my Great Grandmother), Aunt Vina and my daddy so that I may create a written legacy to share the lives of my ancestors with my readers and the general public.  Thank you for your support.  EAJM

Story Resources:

Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton” 1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was Like a steel trap, she never forgot anything, It was her body that was ready for death; she lay down for an afternoon nap and woke only to say goodbye to the grandson she raised, my father.

Grandson – Roy C. Johnson

Granddaughter – Vina Evans-Quinn

Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree Great – Granddaughter

 

BOOKS AT AMAZON.COM BY ELIZABETH ANN JOHNSON-MURPHREE

https://www.amazon.com/Honeysuckle-Memories-Ann-Johnson-murphree/dp/150029070X/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8/

https://www.amazon.com/Asterial-Thoughts-Journey-into-Thought/dp/1540862356/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Rutted-Roads-Collections-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1532909365/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF81

https://www.amazon.com/Journey-into-Art-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500502960/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Sachet-Poetry-Adoration-Aspirations-Asylums/dp/1500483354/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Voices-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500426709/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Echoing-Images-Soul-Journey-into/dp/1500366811/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Reflections-Poetry-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500168645/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

The Chickasaw – Part 5

womanwriterblog

The Chickasaw – Part 5

Hawk found a way to cross the Mississippi River into Northern Alabama.  They made their home on the Eastern side of Alabama.  They lived among a few Indians that were not forced to leave.  Hawk knew that if they did not live like the “white man” they would be forced to leave or killed.  Sipsee learned the language and would walk to the nearest settlement to work; they wanted to build a cabin.  Sipsee knew that they must change with the times, Hawk kept to himself and his own dreams.

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In 1848, Sipsee gave birth to a baby girl, the only child she and Hawk would ever have; she call her Jane and never gave her an Indian name.  It was Sipsee’s way of trying to go with the coming change in their lives.  This change did not mean that she would not teach her daughter to old customs just learn to survive.  Both Sipsee and Hawk learn to survive in their own ways.  He in the way of the land and playing the white man’s game to his advantage.

Once when Sipsee ventured into town and the general store’s proprietor ask her what was her name, she told him Sipsee.  He asks for her last name, she said “Over-Town”; they had tribe names, but no last name.  He misunderstood and called her Sipsee Overton.  Sipsee decided when dealing with the white man she would use the name Overton; it stayed that and continues in the descendants today.

 

To be continued…

Resource – Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton” 1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was Like a steel trap, she never forgot anything, It was her body that was ready for death; she lay down for an afternoon nap and woke only to say goodbye to the grandson she raised, my father.

Other Resources:

Granddaughter – Vina Evans-Quinn

Resource and Post Writer – Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree Great – granddaughter

BOOKS AT AMAZON.COM BY ELIZABETH ANN JOHNSON-MURPHREE

https://www.amazon.com/Honeysuckle-Memories-Ann-Johnson-murphree/dp/150029070X/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8/

https://www.amazon.com/Asterial-Thoughts-Journey-into-Thought/dp/1540862356/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Rutted-Roads-Collections-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1532909365/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF81

https://www.amazon.com/Journey-into-Art-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500502960/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Sachet-Poetry-Adoration-Aspirations-Asylums/dp/1500483354/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Voices-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500426709/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Echoing-Images-Soul-Journey-into/dp/1500366811/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

https://www.amazon.com/Reflections-Poetry-Ann-Johnson-Murphree/dp/1500168645/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

The Chickasaw – Part 4

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Continue – The Chickasaw

They all spoke softly among themselves about what was happening and of the strange land, they were taking them too.  What use to be a proud people, they were now faltering under degrading conditions. Many elders, young children and babies died as all were herded like cattle on a dusty path.   Many years later, this action by the white man against the Indians would be called “The Trail of Tears”.

Ma’s grandparents died before reaching Arkansas …

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There were many fires at night when they were allowed to stop; all Nations were represented, the most were the Cherokee.  Ma was told that many young men spoke of escaping, Hawk agreed with them.  She remembered her father saying that he had rather be dead than living like animals herded into circles by the soldiers.  One of the Over-Town elders a Shaman, “married” them, giving them many spiritual blessings.  Hawk would not leave without Sipsee.  During the darkness of night, they slipped away; Hawk did not tell Sipsee, he knew that their parents would pay for their freedom with their own lives.

 

Hawk found a way to cross the Mississippi River into Northern Alabama.  They made their home on the Eastern side of Alabama.  They lived among a few Indians that were not forced to leave.  Hawk knew that if they did not live like the “white man” they would be forced to leave or killed.  Sipsee learned the language and would walk to the nearest settlement to work; they wanted to build a cabin.  Sipsee knew that they must change with the times, Hawk kept to himself and his own dreams.

 

 

To be continued…

Resource – Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton”
1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was
Like a steel trap, she never forgot anything,
It was her body that was ready for death; she lay
down for an afternoon nap and woke only to
say goodbye to the grandson she raised, my father

Post Writer – Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree
Great granddaughter

 

The Chickasaw – Part 2

womanwriterblog

My last entry I wrote of a feeling of impatient irritation in reading “FAKE” or “REAL” news, that feeling continues however I have not had time to post; please excuse me; the mind or body did not cooperated these past few days .  My depression sometime has a life of its own that I cannot win.

I told you of my great-grandmother who was the “Keeper of the Memories” for the family.  Everyone called her “Ma”;   I spent many hours sitting next to her rocking chair just listening.  You read of her father Fosee, her grandfather and grandmother, all Native Americans living in Alabama Territory.

(Ma as the storyteller continues) However, Fosee like all of the boys in his vision could not wait to go on his Vision Quest.  Early one morning his father woke him it was time to find his own Totem.  At the edge of the forest (this would later be known as the Black Warrior Forest), he was shown a path that he must follow, yet, to find his own path in life.  Somewhere down that path, he would discover himself.

On that path he saw many signs of small animals, he found a bush with his favorite berries; quickly pushed his hunger out of his mind, he could not eat until he discovered his path in life.  Mid-day he came upon a clearing Fosee lay down in the tall yellow grass staring at the sky and watching the clouds drift by; he drifted off to sleep.  It was in that sleep he dreamed that his grandfather was with him; Fosee smiled when he looked at the leathery chiseled face with deep furrowed lines and the long white hair cascading around his strong shoulders.  Then he heard his grandfather calling his name, Fosee jumped from his warm bed of wild wheat and ran toward the river, he had much to do before dark.  Fosee carried rocks and cedar branches to the top of a large flat rock, the made a circle placing twigs in the circle, he used flints to light his fire and was soon fast asleep.

Fosee did not move from the flat rock where he drifted in and out of sleep both day and night, he was hungry; one day led to the next.  On the third day, he leaned over looking at the river below; then he thought that he heard his grandfather.  Then, he saw him, sitting across from him, the smoke stung his eyes and it was like a thick fog, but he could hear his grandfather talking to him, although his mouth never moved.  It was the spirit of his grandfather.

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On the fourth day came and this would be his last night on the rock, floating in and out of consciousness.   The eastern sky looked like the forest was on fire, the western sky a full moon seems to be dipping behind the cliffs that edged the river.  Suddenly, a Hawk with massive wings glided over the fire landing next to the circle of rocks.  The Hawk spread his wings pointing at one of the rocks saying, “This is where you life began”; then he spread his wing around the circle saying “This is where you life will end”.  There was one rock missing.  Fosee returned to the path, the Hawk followed him, and then swooped down landing on a fallen tree.  When he looked back to the path there stood his father and they returned without talking to meet his mother at the cooking fire.  He turned to the center yard saying, “I am no longer Little Bird, my name is Hawk”.

 

Resource – Storyteller – Jane Over-Town “Overton”
1848-1954 at the age of 106 her mind was
Like a steel trap, she never forgot anything,
It was her body that was ready for death; she lay
down for an afternoon nap and woke only to
say goodbye to the grandson she raised, my father

Post Writer – Elizabeth Ann Johnson-Murphree
Great granddaughter