About Carrie Bell Green:
The narrative below is from a post to the Ancestry message board by Dorcas.
THE LIFE STORY OF
CARRIE BELL GREEN WALTHALL March 3,1981
My name is Carrie Bell Green Walthall. I was born on a farm
in Montgomery, Texas. Mama's name was Lucy Bell Eiland Green. Papa's folks came from Oklahoma. My great
grandma was a Cheroke Indian. Mama's folks came from Arkansas .
I had three sisters and three
brothers. My oldest sister's name was Arte Elizabeth. Next was Lena Sigers and then William Thomas
Lee, then me, Carrie Bell. My youngest brother was Jesse Matthew. I don't remember much about that
part of my life.
Not long after, we moved to Corsicana, Texas. Then in 1910, my mama passed
away. I don't remember much about her. I was only three years old when it happened. The family said
we were all sick with slow fever then. Papa's brother, Uncle Doc, brought his family to our house.
They had the big red measles. Of course, we took the measles. That was too much for mama. She passed
away. My youngest brother, we called him Buster, was only eighteen months old. The measles settled
in his stomach. He was always sickly. When he was eight years old, he passed away with something wrong
with his stomach .
After Mama died, papa took all seven of us and moved to a farm in Anderson
County near Tennessee Colony, fourteen miles from Palestine, Texas. I remember the man that owned the
place was Hudson. He had three sons. They had a yoke of oxen. They would drive them like horses to
pull a wagon. I know papa went to the farm so he could keep all of us together. It was awfully hard
on him, but he loved us so very much he wanted us with him and wanted us all to be together.
stayed at the house to look after the smaller ones, but Lena and Hap plowed and helped papa with the
farm work. But I remember papa always did the cooking and the girls helped. Then, as we got older,
we all helped. I still remember when papa went to town, he always took a load of wood or vegetables
to sell to help buy the groceries or sometimes he would swap a cow for milk and killed hogs in the winter
for meat. I cut them up and pack the meat in barrells of salt to it would't spoil until we ate it.
when papa plowed the fields we would follow him and walk in the cool damp sand. When papa went to town,
we always knew when he was almost home. He was always singing some religous song and the one he sang
was amazing grace. In the evening after supper we would sit on the front porch. Papa would sing ballads
to us like Barbara Allen and other songs, then, before we went to bed, Artie read some in the Bible
and we all would kneel around the fireplace and papa would pray. He always prayed a long time. I guess,
since mama was gone, God was the only one he had to talk to. I remember most of us went to sleep while
he was praying. I guess we were like all other children, when we got still, it didn't take long to
go to sleep. Papa always picked the younger ones up and carried us to bed.
I remember Buster
and I were always together playing. I guess we sort of looked after each other when all the rest were
working in the field. Everyone had chores to do in the morning and evening. Papa always got up in
the morning about 4:00 am. The stock had to be fed, the cow had to be milked. Lena helped with the
milking and plowing some then Abner got old enough and he plowed. They only used one horse and plowed
with a single stock plow except for the heavy plowing papa used two horses. We had a litle red mare.
Her name was Maud. She was there as far back as I can remember. She was like one of the family.
We all rode her and loved her . And we all cried when she died, but tht is the way life is. We have
to loose something of some we love.
But our lives were not all sadness. We were poor in worldly
things, but we all had a great love for each other. We didn't have a car, we went everywhere in a wagon.
Almost every fall, when we got our crop gathered, papa would build an overget. That is a wagon bed
on top of the regular wagon bed. Only wide enough for a regular pair of bed springs and mattress.
Some of us slept on a pallet under the wagon. Papa and the girls cooked on a camp fire. Papa could
cook like a woman. He made biscuits and baked them in an indian dutch oven sat on the hot cals with
some on the lid. We really enjoyed camping out .
We went to the black land around Corsicana
and we all picked cotton to make money for clothes and for the winter. We were poor, I guess, but we
didn't know any other way. We were happy. We never had a lot of bought toys like children do today.
We would take bottles and make harnesses out of string and hook them to teams sometimes four to a sugar
box of dirt for a wagon. Sometimes, the boys would find some small wheels and make a little wagon.
Papa always kept some goats. Hap and Green (William ) made a harness for the billy goat and hooked
him to the little wagon and he would pull us around. It was lots of fun. We climed trees and swang
in the top of small trees back and forth. It seemed there was always something to play.
we had the time, we went hunting also the boys and papa shot squirrels and rabbits, quails and doves.
Sometime in the winter, when they were fat, they would kill an oppossum. Papa baked it with sweet
potatoes and it was good. Also where ever we lived, there was always a peach and plum orchard. Papa
told us not to eat the green plums and peaches, but we did sometimes. But when we ate green peaches,
we dug a hole and put the seed and peelings in the hole and covered them up so Papa wouldn't know we
had been eating green peaches.
He was always around when we would get sick, but when we did get
sick some one had to ride a horse to town and bring the doctor. But although Papa was sick sometime,
I never remember the doctor coming to see him. Papa was not a stout man and I think that is why he
only lived ten years after mama died. He worked to hard and didn't take care of himself. But he always
saw that we were checked by a doctor.
He died in February 1920. He had brights disease (kidney
trouble). I knew then my best friend was gone. I was staying with Artie. She was sending me to school.
They had three little girls. I don't see how they made a living for all of us, but Artie always worked.
But in December, after Papa died, Lena had a baby. Then she wanted me to live with them so I could
do the house work. I didn't know much about house work and doing washing, but she told me how. It
was pretty rough until I was sixteen, then I went to stay with Eletha and Junius and went to work in
the cotton mill. Hap and Green were already working. Abner Hap was working when papa died, but Green
wasn't old enough so he lived with Eletha and Junius for a year, then he went to work.
understand when it happened, why my little brother died. But now, after a lot of years, and experience,
I know it was for the best for him. Because God knew what was ahead for us and he knew Buster was
so young and not to strong, it would be awfully hard for him to get by. The Lord always knows what is
ahead of us and what is best for us in the end, even if we don't understand.
After I got sixteen,
I went to work and after that I thought I wanted to get married and have a home of my own .
Bell Green Walthall
Hope you enjoy her article she has since passed away.