A Letter from Jordan Anderson to his old master

A Letter from Jordan Anderson to his old master

I found this on Facebook and had to share again on this platform. This has to be the classiest, shadiest, response I’ve ever read.

Please partake in the beautifully carfted letter from Jordon Anderson circa 1865, saying respectfully I’m free, kick these rocks and my black ass shade….

You are welcome

T

Dayton, Ohio,

August 7, 1865

To My Old Master, Colonel P.H. Anderson, Big Spring, Tennessee

Sir: I got your letter, and was glad to find that you had not forgotten Jordon, and that you wanted me to come back and live with you again, promising to do better for me than anybody else can. I have often felt uneasy about you. I thought the Yankees would have hung you long before this, for harboring Rebs they found at your house. I suppose they never heard about your going to Colonel Martin’s to kill the Union soldier that was left by his company in their stable. Although you shot at me twice before I left you, I did not want to hear of your being hurt, and am glad you are still living. It would do me good to go back to the dear old home again, and see Miss Mary and Miss Martha and Allen, Esther, Green, and Lee. Give my love to them all, and tell them I hope we will meet in the better world, if not in this. I would have gone back to see you all when I was working in the Nashville Hospital, but one of the neighbors told me that Henry intended to shoot me if he ever got a chance.

I want to know particularly what the good chance is you propose to give me. I am doing tolerably well here. I get twenty-five dollars a month, with victuals and clothing; have a comfortable home for Mandy,—the folks call her Mrs. Anderson,—and the children—Milly, Jane, and Grundy—go to school and are learning well. The teacher says Grundy has a head for a preacher. They go to Sunday school, and Mandy and me attend church regularly. We are kindly treated. Sometimes we overhear others saying, “Them colored people were slaves” down in Tennessee. The children feel hurt when they hear such remarks; but I tell them it was no disgrace in Tennessee to belong to Colonel Anderson. Many darkeys would have been proud, as I used to be, to call you master. Now if you will write and say what wages you will give me, I will be better able to decide whether it would be to my advantage to move back again.

As to my freedom, which you say I can have, there is nothing to be gained on that score, as I got my free papers in 1864 from the Provost-Marshal-General of the Department of Nashville. Mandy says she would be afraid to go back without some proof that you were disposed to treat us justly and kindly; and we have concluded to test your sincerity by asking you to send us our wages for the time we served you. This will make us forget and forgive old scores, and rely on your justice and friendship in the future. I served you faithfully for thirty-two years, and Mandy twenty years. At twenty-five dollars a month for me, and two dollars a week for Mandy, our earnings would amount to eleven thousand six hundred and eighty dollars. Add to this the interest for the time our wages have been kept back, and deduct what you paid for our clothing, and three doctor’s visits to me, and pulling a tooth for Mandy, and the balance will show what we are in justice entitled to. Please send the money by Adams’s Express, in care of V. Winters, Esq., Dayton, Ohio. If you fail to pay us for faithful labors in the past, we can have little faith in your promises in the future. We trust the good Maker has opened your eyes to the wrongs which you and your fathers have done to me and my fathers, in making us toil for you for generations without recompense. Here I draw my wages every Saturday night; but in Tennessee there was never any pay-day for the negroes any more than for the horses and cows. Surely there will be a day of reckoning for those who defraud the laborer of his hire.

In answering this letter, please state if there would be any safety for my Milly and Jane, who are now grown up, and both good-looking girls. You know how it was with poor Matilda and Catherine. I would rather stay here and starve – and die, if it come to that – than have my girls brought to shame by the violence and wickedness of their young masters. You will also please state if there has been any schools opened for the colored children in your neighborhood. The great desire of my life now is to give my children an education, and have them form virtuous habits.

Say howdy to George Carter, and thank him for taking the pistol from you when you were shooting at me.

From your old servant,

Jordon Anderson

What are you reading?

What are you reading?

 I’m currently finishing up “The New Jim Crow” by Michelle Alexander. This book was referenced within the novel, so I decided to buy it.

Lately, I find myself being drawn to insightful books that give perspective on life as an African American in America, pertaining specifically to socio-economic, cultural and racial disparities between blacks (poc) and whites.

There has been so much dialogue involving government conspiracies to deconstruct, devalue and demoralize this group of people (my people) specifically starting from the break down of slavery. I know plenty of people who like to argue that slavery was so long ago that the effects of it couldn’t possibly still be felt within the black community.

I disagree, yes slavery happened a long time ago, but those people forget that black people have only been free in America for about one hundred fifty/sixty years and it wasn’t something that the people who once owned slaves were necessarily ecstatic about complying with.

Continue reading “What are you reading?”

The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution Full Film | Video | Independent Lens | PBS

The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution sheds light on the Black Panther Party — and all its reviled, adored, misunderstood, and mythologized history.

Source: The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution Full Film | Video | Independent Lens | PBS

Non-White History Optional?

If you live in America, studied in America or vacationed in America you probably know it’s the most hypocritical country of all countries. For instance the saying “home of the brave, land of the free”, implies equality for all. But what it really means free for all but the people of color; enjoy that struggle life.

I appreciate the fact that February is black history month, a month that celebrates the lives, innovation, and contributions of Americans of African decent. What I hate about all of the designated POC months is the contradiction of having the option to learn about people of color on their designated months within the year. For instance Spanish heritage month is in September, Asian-Pacific heritage month is in May; you get where I’m going with this? Why aren’t the people who help make this country a mandatory part of American history?

Why aren’t people of color included in American history? Outside of blacks in reference to slavery and the natives in reference to the massacres of a nation of the people who occupied this land before the Mayflower showed up? (I’m sure American history doesn’t reference that time in history as a massacre it’s probably something way more romanticized in way that makes the natives the enemy and deserving of their ultimate demise).

When I was in grade school I would’ve have loved to learn about the immigration of Asian, Latino, East European, Middle Eastern Americans.  Why is history purposely left out of history? Whites, Blacks and Native Americans aren’t the only contributors to American history; in the case of blacks and Native Americans history only talks of the victimization of both cultures, not the contributions. I learned of the black contributions in history during black history month, it wasn’t a part of the core curriculum in grade school, high school or college. You could study “other” history in certain colleges/universities as electives.

Say word? Learning about anyone or any instance in American history that doesn’t include White people is an elective. WTF

Happy Black History Month…

T