Texas Slave Narratives

Texas Slave Narrative

  Scot Glen

All the signs of a venerable old age are apparent in the person of Scot Glen , ex-slave of Beaumont. His hair is rather long and straggly and almost pure white. His beard is similar in color and his face is quite typical. Lines are across his brow. He was rather small of figure, as, seated in a chair on the little porch of a well kept house, he tried to recall the story of his life. But his memory was not very clear. He was wearing a pale blue calico shirt, over which was a light vest, and blue pants. His shoes were of good material apparently, but well worn. He is of the fortunate type who has a son apparently in good circumstances, who takes care of his aged father in the evening of his life.

Yessir, I was bo'n in slav'ry times up in Jasper county. My ol' marster was Joe Glen and ol' Missus was name' Mary I b'lieve dat what her name was. Dey had seb'rel chillun, but it been so long 'go dat I don' 'member what dey names was. My pa and ma was Alexander and Millie Glen . I t'ink dey muster come from de ol' states, but I dunno where. I was jis' a li'l feller in slav'ry time. I warn't big 'nough to task. I had to clean up de knives and de forks and sich from de table and mind flies offen de table when de white folks was a-eatin', but 'sides dat I didn' do nuthin' much.  Marster he uster live in a pretty big house. It was a frame house buil' wid planks. It had a po'ch on it, too. Dey had slave quarters on de place but I didn' pay no 'tention to dem and I forgit what kinder houses dey was. Marster treat' he slaves pretty good. He had 'em trained to know right from wrong. He beat 'em when dey ain't done right. He give 'em pretty good food to eat. Dey uster raise cotton and co'n and wheat on de place. My pa and ma dey wuk in de fiel', I guess. Dere was plenty of horses and cattle and hogs and other stock, too. I seen some sojers. Dey march down de road. I guess it was 'bout a mile long. Dey had guns and swords, and was dress' in unifo'm. Dey had wagons 'long, haulin' dey t'ings, too. I t'ink dey was no'thern sojers. Dats what I t'ing 'bout it.

I t'ink dey had preachin' in slav'ry times. Sometime dey was a white preacher. Dey hab cullud preacher, too, I think. Oh, yes, dey had a preacher to bury 'em when dey 'ceased. Dey warn't no Sunday school dat I knowed of. I t'ink dey had mos'ly buggies to trabble in. Dey done mos' of dere haulin' in ox-wagons. Dey had co'n haulin' done by mules and hosses. I didn' had no teachers nor schoolin' in slavery, but atter freedom come I went to school. My teachers was name' Mr. and Mrs. Truitt , and Mr. Moore , and Mrs. Tilton . Dey was white folks. I guess dey was from de Norf. I didn' git much schoolin'. I uster tek my spellin' book 'long wid me. I uster had to go to de mill wid co'n to git groun' into meal. While I waitin' for de mill to grin' de co'n I ax de white boys 'roun' to tell me what de words was and I git 'em to help me dat away. Back in slav'ry time all de clo's dey wo' was homemake. Dey had one ol' woman to do de spinnin' and weavin'. Dey had a loom and spinnin' wheel and mek clof outer wool and cotton. Atter freedom I wuk for a Mr. Smith . I been farmin' all my life 'til I git too ol'. I been here in Beaumont 'bout forty year'. When I fus' come here dey warn't no brick buil'in' in de place. It was jis' a li'l place. I live here and farm right 'long. I neber see no automobile 'til long time atter I come to Beaumont. I's allus farmed. I heerd 'em say dat in slav'ry time some of de folks uster hunt runaway slaves wid dogs, but dey didn' had nuthin' like dat on us place, and I neber see no sich doin's.I neber seen no Klu Kluxes but I jis' hear folks talk 'bout 'em. And I ain't seen no ghos'es. I guess I 'bout 22 or 23 year' ol' when I git marry. My wife was name' Crissie Goode . Us bofe from up 'roun' Jasper. Us had a pretty big weddin'. Den atter de cer'mony us had a big dance and eb'rybody hab a big time. We's had nine chillun in all, but dey's only two boy' and t'ree gals livin'. I lives here wid my son, Lucius Glen . I's a member of de Christian Chu'ch. I jis' a member, I neber did had no office in de chu'ch. I neber jine no lodges. When I was younger I uster like to hunt and fish, but I too ol' for dat now. I's a ol' man but I gwine tell you one t'ing what mek up life. Dats what eb'rybody do, and dats dis: 'Live, learn, and forgit.