Nancy King, 93, was born in Upshur County, Texas, a slave of William Jackson. She and her husband moved to Marshall, Texas, in 1866. Nancy now lives with her daughter, Lucy Staples.

"I was borned and raised on William Jackson's place, jus' twelve miles east of Gilmer. I was growed and had one child at surrender, and my mother told me I was a woman of my own when Old Missie sot us free, jus' after surrender, so you can figurate my age from that.

"My first child was borned the January befo' surrender in June, and I 'members hoeing in the field befo' the war come on. Massa William raised lots of cotton and corn and tobacco and most everything we et. I never worked in the field, 'cept to chase the calves in, till I was most growed. Massa was good to us. Course, I never went to school, but Old Missie sent my brother, Alex, two years after the war, with her own chillen.

"I was married durin' the war and it was at church, with a white preacher. Old Missie give me the cloth and dye for my weddin' dress and my mother spun and dyed the cloth, and I made it. It was homespun but nothin' cheap 'bout it for them days. After the weddin' massa give us a big dinner and we had a time.

"Massa done all the bossin' his own self. He never whipped me, but Old Missie had to switch me a little for piddlin' round, 'stead of doin' what she said. Every Sat'day night we had a candy pullin' and played games, and allus had plenty of clothes and shoes.

"I seed the soldiers comin' and gwine to the war, and 'members when Massa William left to go fight for the South. His boy, Billie, was sixteen, and tended the place while massa's away. Massa done say he'd let the niggers go without fightin'. He didn't think war was right, but he had to go. He 'serts and comes home befo' the war gits goin' good and the soldiers come after him. He run off to the bottoms, but they was on hosses and overtook him. I was there in the room when they brung him back. One of them says, 'Jackson, we ain't gwine take you with us now, but we'll fix you so you can't run off till we git back.' They put red pepper in his eyes and left. Missie cried. They come back for him in a day or two and made my father saddle up Hawk-eye, massa's best hoss. Then they rode away and we never seed massa 'gain. One day my brother, Alex, hollers out, 'Oh, Missie, yonder is the hoss, at the gate, and ain't nobody ridin' him.' Missie throwed up her hands and says, 'O, Lawdy, my husban' am dead!' She knowed somehow when he left he wasn't comin' back.

"Old Missie freed us but said we had a home as long as she did. Me and my husban' stays 'bout a year, but my folks stays till she marries 'gain.

"My brother-in-law, Sam Pitman, tells us how he put one by the Ku Kluxers. Him and some niggers was out one night and the Kluxers chases them on hosses. They run down a narrow road and tied four strands of grapevine 'cross the road, 'bout breast high to a hoss. The Kluxers come gallopin' down that road and when the hosses hit that grapevine, it throwed them every which way and broke some their arms. Sam used to laugh and tell how them Kluxers cussed them niggers.

"Me and my husban' come to Marshall the year after surrender, and I is lived here every since. My man works on farms till he got on the railroad. I's been married four times and raised six chillen. The young people is diff'rent from what we was, but diff'rent times calls for diff'rent ways, I 'spect. My chillen allus done the best they could by me.