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Title: Oral History Interview with Louise Pointer Morton, December 12, 1994. Interview Q-0067. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Electronic Edition.
Author: Morton, Louise Pointer, interviewee
Interview conducted by McCoy, Eddie
Funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services supported the electronic publication of this interview.
Text encoded by Jennifer Joyner
Sound recordings digitized by Aaron Smithers Southern Folklife Collection
First edition, 2007
Size of electronic edition: 148 Kb
Publisher: The University Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, North Carolina
2007.
© This work is the property of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. It may be used freely by individuals for research, teaching and personal use as long as this statement of availability is included in the text.
The electronic edition is a part of the UNC-Chapel Hill digital library, Documenting the American South.
Languages used in the text: English
Revision history:
2007-00-00, Celine Noel, Wanda Gunther, and Kristin Martin revised TEIHeader and created catalog record for the electronic edition.
2007-11-27, Jennifer Joyner finished TEI-conformant encoding and final proofing.
Source(s):
Title of recording: Oral History Interview with Louise Pointer Morton, December 12, 1994. Interview Q-0067. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series Q. African American Life and Culture. Southern Oral History Program Collection (Q-0067)
Author: Eddie McCoy
Title of transcript: Oral History Interview with Louise Pointer Morton, December 12, 1994. Interview Q-0067. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Title of series: Series Q. African American Life and Culture. Southern Oral History Program Collection (Q-0067)
Author: Louise Pointer Morton
Description: 87.3 Mb
Description: 37 p.
Note: Interview conducted on December 12, 1994, by Eddie McCoy; recorded in Granville County, North Carolina.
Note: Transcribed by Sally Council.
Note: Forms part of: Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007): Series Q. African American Life and Culture, Manuscripts Department, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Note: Original transcript on deposit at the Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
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The text has been entered using double-keying and verified against the original.
The text has been encoded using the recommendations for Level 4 of the TEI in Libraries Guidelines.
Original grammar and spelling have been preserved.
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Interview with Louise Pointer Morton, December 12, 1994.
Interview Q-0067. Southern Oral History Program Collection (#4007)
Morton, Louise Pointer, interviewee


Interview Participants

    LOUISE POINTER MORTON, interviewee
    EDDIE McCOY, interviewer

[TAPE 1, SIDE A]


Page 1
[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]
EDDIE McCOY:
… and I'm visiting Mrs. Pointer Morton. She lives in northern Granville County and I'll be talking with her this morning. Mrs. Morton, I want you to tell me something about your mother and your father and their—and your children as y'all come along, playing in the yard.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh yeah, that's been a long time. My mother and father raised nine children to get grown and married. And out of the nine, it's five dead now and four living. Five dead and four living. And all them have families in different parts of the world.
I have a sister named Beatrice Pointer Webster. She lives in Detroit, Michigan. I have a brother named John Lewis Pointer. He lives in Philadelphia. And I have a brother here named Willie Pointer, lives here in Oxford. And I'm the next, Louise Pointer Morton. I'm the next. Well, my mother raised us all up. We lived on a farm all of our life. And as we got grown, the boys and all, they went off different places, working and all.
And then, my grandma was living. My grandmother was named Margaret Yancey Downey. My grandma was old but I was a small girl and she used to tell us about the church and all.
So she told me the first [standing] of Jonathon [Johnson?] Creek Church, she was [in] slavery. And she worked for the [Pittards]. And she said, when they—colored people would get ready to have service, said they'd get together and turn down a pot that would catch the sound. That way they sung and prayed.
And said, well, by she was working in the [Pittards], said the white people went to church, said she told her bossman, said, "Look-a-here." Said, "We wants a church. Could

Page 2
you let us have a church?"
Said he told us yes. And Jonathon Creek—the first land of Jonathon Creek Church was given to my grandma, Margaret Yancey Downey. And she told us that the first church they had, the men got together and built a log church. And said they stayed in the log church and as the years rolled over, said they built a frame church. And they named it Jonathan Creek Baptist Church.
EDDIE McCOY:
What was the name before? The first one's name? What was the first church's name?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
The first church? The log church was the first church. That's where they named it Jonathon Creek, the little log church.
EDDIE McCOY:
Why?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I don't know why.
EDDIE McCOY:
The white man gave that land?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Gave the land.
EDDIE McCOY:
And she was a slave on his farm?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
She was a slave for these [Pittards] people. She was a slave.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh. He told her—if he could give her anything, she'd like to have a church where they could worship.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh. Yes, they wanted a church. And so this [Pittard] man gave her the land and they built a church. And she said the church they built was a log church.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did she have a house to stay in, or what was she staying on the—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, yeah. My grandma had a home, not far from the church. She bought five

Page 3
acres of land. She was a widow. Her husband died, don't know nothing about that. But she was a widow, and she bought five acres of land and she lived on that land and raised my mama and eight or nine—oh, a crowd of girls. It was about eight girls and two boys, I think. And she raised one adopted son. And she lived on this five acres of land, raised those children. As they'd get large enough, they would work out and she would work, [she said], and raise those children.
EDDIE McCOY:
Is the church on the land that Mr. Pittard gave her, the five acres?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, we still got the church on—. Her house was not far from the church. But Mr. Pittard give her this land—I don't where it was [stated], but anyhow, he give her the land to build a church.
EDDIE McCOY:
Does she have a deed to it now? Do y'all have a deed?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, my grandma's dead. The church had a deed then cause the church bought more land beside there. That's why I don't know how much was in that Mr. Pittard gave her for a church. But after the years rolled over and the church—. After they built more church, didn't put it [down here]. [See, after the people growed], they built it up high. They took down now for a school, had a school. I went to school there for years and years when I was a small girl.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where was the first school at?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Right there on this spot where this man give my grandma. And then after the church people growed and had a little money, they bought land joining this. So it all joined together now.
EDDIE McCOY:
So it's been two schools?

Page 4
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
It was just one school, but it's been two churches. I know it's been two churches.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where was the first church built at?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Right above where the school was, right above.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK, and then they came back and built the next one where it is now?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Where it is now. That's it. Uh-huh. Now, I can remember back that far.
EDDIE McCOY:
Is this your mother's grandmother or your father's?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My mother's mother.
EDDIE McCOY:
Could she read and write?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My grandma?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, no.
EDDIE McCOY:
And all she wanted was enough land to build a church and he gave her more. And she didn't have a house. That's something, isn't it, to sacrifice a church for a house?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-hum. Um-hum.
EDDIE McCOY:
Alright, what happened on Sunday afternoons when y'all come home from church? What would y'all play or what would you do?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, when we would come home, we would play. We would go to our aunt's house and all we children and cousins would get together and play and have a good time. That was way back yonder when I was small.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did your mother or y'all be in church every Sunday they had church?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
We'd walk to Sunday School. [Back then there wasn't no cars.]

Page 5
EDDIE McCOY:
How many miles did you live from the—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
From the church? I reckon about two, something like two miles and a half.
EDDIE McCOY:
How far? Two miles and a half?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh, from where we lived down there to the church.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did your mother go with y'all?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, Daddy went. 'Twas so many children, Mama had to stay home and cook. And my Daddy would carry us to church.
EDDIE McCOY:
When your mother could go to church, did she carry shoes in her hand? Had one pair for church and one pair to wear?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, no, we won't all that poor. Uh-uh, uh-uh. We didn't have—they had clothes—we put clothes—. I ain't never been to church barefooted in my life.
EDDIE McCOY:
What did your father do?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Was a farmer, worked on the farm. My father had a home. After we children got big enough, my father bought a home and had—. The old homeplace is not far. It's across the branch from where I live now.
EDDIE McCOY:
Is that part of the land that the Pittards gave—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, uh-uh. This was the church. This was [Downey]. This don't have nothing to do with my daddy's home. Uh-uh.
EDDIE McCOY:
Mr. Pittard had slaves on his farm?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
See, I don't know. I know that my grandma said she was a slave for them.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh. She was a slave.

Page 7
you. And five is dead and four is living. Yeah, when my brother was—. Arthur, my brother Arthur, used to work at the sawmills. My brother Will, they was all working down there, helping Daddy raise us and all [like a man].
EDDIE McCOY:
How many grades did that school have, one to sixth, or one to seventh grade?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
The school was—. We would stay in that school to the seventh grade. Didn't have but one teacher and we went to the seventh grade.
EDDIE McCOY:
What happened if that teacher was sick and didn't come that day?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Was that sick and didn't come? Oh, she would have somebody. We would always have school. Somebody would come in and substitute teach for her.
EDDIE McCOY:
Somebody from the community?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh.
EDDIE McCOY:
One of the kids' parents?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
It's been so long, I can't think. But we always had somebody there to teach for her. See, [laughter] this has been a long time. Uh. Long, long time.
EDDIE McCOY:
How many brothers and sisters have you got older than you?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Wait, let me go back and count them.
EDDIE McCOY:
That went to school?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Wait. My brother Arthur, he was so old, I didn't go to school with my brother Arthur. Come down to Will. Brother Will and Robert and Sam and John Lewis. Now, Will was my older brother but he would go, you know. And rainy, snowy days, [hitch up] the wagon, get us children on the wagon and carry us to school. My brother Will done the most of the driving carrying us to school but he was on up there, a grown man, you know, at that

Page 8
time.
EDDIE McCOY:
What did Will tell you that happened when he was a kid, since he was way older than you? He knew more than you did. Did he pass anything down the line?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Not as I know. It's been so long. My brother Arthur was the oldest, but it's been so long.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where did y'all learn how to read? In the Sunday School? At church?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, I learned how to read in the everyday school we went to. We learned how to read and write in the school. When we went to church, we had little cards the teachers would teach us about Christ and all that on little cards.
EDDIE McCOY:
She'd hold them up in front of you?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh.
EDDIE McCOY:
And have pictures on them?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
And show us the card and any little writing on it, we'd read that. Whoo, it's been a long time. That's been a long time.
EDDIE McCOY:
Who made the fire at your school?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I don't know.
EDDIE McCOY:
The first one got to school made the fire, or the teacher made it?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, [bound to be] the first one got there. 'Twas warm when we got there.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where'd you get the wood from?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Huh?
EDDIE McCOY:
Where did they get the wood from? Your brother's sawmill, or the sawmill your brother worked on?

Page 9
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, I don't know where they got the wood from. All I know 'twas warm at school. I can't tell you that.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where'd you get your water from?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
We had a spring.
EDDIE McCOY:
How far did you have to go to get it?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, not far. We had a spring. We got the water to drink from the spring.
EDDIE McCOY:
About a half a mile?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, no. Right down below the branch, right down below the school.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where did you hang your clothes at when it was raining?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
When it was raining, we had a place in the school in the back where we would all hang our clothes. Nails nailed up all and hang our clothes—.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did you have to go through the—? Was it built outside, separate from the school? You go out the school door, and the boys clothes on one side and the—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, 'twon't but one building, one school building. The children had a place in there to hang their clothes. It won't but one building. Didn't have no two buildings.
EDDIE McCOY:
How'd you warm your hands when you got to school?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
With a heater. We had a heater in the school to keep it warm. And a fire. [laughter] Man, you don't know nothing about them days way back yonder.
EDDIE McCOY:
What's the farthest a child would walk to your school that you know?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
The first child?
EDDIE McCOY:
The farthest? Not you, but the—. Who walked the farthest to school? Not in your family. Somebody in the neighborhood.

Page 10
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I just don't know. Cause we all kind of lived close together. I just don't know.
EDDIE McCOY:
Was your mother from Granville County, Oxford? Was she born in Virginia or North Carolina?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-uh. All my folks were—North Carolina. Um-hum, from North Carolina.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did you know your mother's parents?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I knowed my Grandma Nanny.
EDDIE McCOY:
Who's that? What side was that on?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
On my mama's. My grandma on my mama's.
EDDIE McCOY:
What did she do?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My grandma?
EDDIE McCOY:
Um-hum.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Well, after she was a slave and got out of that, then she married. I never did know Grandaddy Steve. His name was Grandaddy Steve. He was dead before I knowed him.
EDDIE McCOY:
How old was your mother's mother when she died?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
They say she was a hundred—. I believe they say she was a hundred and six.
EDDIE McCOY:
And she was in slavery?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh.
EDDIE McCOY:
What year did she die?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Lord have mercy. It's the only tombstone in Jonathon Creek Church.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK, I'll find it when I go up there.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Well, you find it. It's the first grave right behind the church, there where the grandchildren put the stone to her head. You find that. It's on there. I can't tell you.

Page 11
EDDIE McCOY:
Y'all live a long time in your family, don't you?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh.
EDDIE McCOY:
What school did you go to after you finished school up there? Or did you further go to school? You didn't go no higher than the seventh grade?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, yeah. I finished that. Well, I don't know where it was 19—. It was bound to been in the 19 and the 30s. Anyhow, after I finished there, then myself and my cousin, Marie Peace, we went to Henderson Institute.
EDDIE McCOY:
And stayed overnight?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, we went there.
EDDIE McCOY:
You boarded in?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh.
EDDIE McCOY:
What was the family's name you boarded in?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I'm talking about, we stayed in the dormitory. We stayed in school. Myself and Marie, we was cousins. We stayed together. Well—eight, nine, ten. We went there near about two years. Anyhow, I went to the tenth, but I didn't finish, and my cousin went to the eleventh, and she didn't finish, on account of Marie's mama, my mama's baby sister, stayed with Grandma. And Marie's mama got sick and she had to come home to stay with all the other children. She had to come and so I didn't want to stay by myself and I asked my daddy to let me come on, too, so we come home. I didn't finish the tenth and she didn't finish the eleventh. That's as high as I went.
EDDIE McCOY:
Why y'all didn't go to Mary Potter, and choose to go to Henderson?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I just don't know. I couldn't tell you. That's where our parents put us.

Page 12
Henderson Institute, that's where—.
EDDIE McCOY:
Tell me about your father's mother. Do you remember your father's mother?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Grandma Dicey? No, I didn't know her. Grandma Dicey. Her name was Grandma Dicey. She died before I knowed her.
EDDIE McCOY:
Why'd they call her Dicey?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
That was her name.
EDDIE McCOY:
Her nickname, or they just called—.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
That was her name.
EDDIE McCOY:
What did they tell you about her? Your father talked to you about his mother. What did he say about her?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
All he said he had a good mama. All he said he had a good mama.
EDDIE McCOY:
Was she in slavery?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Now, I don't know. I can't tell about my daddy's mama. I don't know. Cause she didn't live close to us. I don't know—. Grandma Dicey, she didn't live close to us. I just can't—don't know nothing about her. All I know is my Grandma Dicey. That's all I know. I didn't know about her. But like my mama's mama, she lived a long time and we went to her house and all that.
EDDIE McCOY:
Who did the work around the house? The girls did the work and the boys did the work on the outside?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Where? At my home or at—?
EDDIE McCOY:
When you was growing up?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, when we was growing, everybody had a job to do. We had a job to do.

Page 13
Them girls had to milk the cows, had to go to the spring and get the water and all. And them boys had to feed the mules and horses and they had to cut the wood and get—. All of us had a job to do. In the wintertime, too.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did your father ever hire y'all out to other people?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Not we girls. With them boys, would go around and do work. Those boys would help, but we girls didn't.
EDDIE McCOY:
But he would hire his boys out?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh. They would work.
EDDIE McCOY:
To somebody when they need them.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, that's right. Like if somebody need them.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did y'all ever have corn shuckings?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, Lord, what you talking about? Yeah!
EDDIE McCOY:
Tell me about that.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Lord, my daddy raised more corn. On the low ground. If he didn't have enough land on his place, he'd go and rent on the [unknown] farm. Some of the biggest corn fields. Lord have mercy, we would go there and—. You know what they'd do? First they'd pull that fodder, pull that fodder.
EDDIE McCOY:
Pull what?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Pull the fodder off the corn stalk.
EDDIE McCOY:
What's fodder? The husks?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Them blades what is on it is the fodder. Them blades. Pull that fodder. After we'd pull that fodder, and then when the corn—. [In the fall of the year] the corn get hard

Page 14
and all. See, go back and they would pull that fodder in there and tie it up in little bundles. Tie that fodder up, grab it—rack it up, you know. Rack it all around and around. And then, when it get dry and all, they'll haul it and put it in the stables. That's what the horses and things eat. When that corn get dry, we'd go back and pull the corn. Well, pull the corn and throw it in a pile. After we pulled the corn and all, then when the top—. We had to go back and cut the tops. That was for the horses and things to eat. Lord, they would tie them tops up and stack them and all. And the corn, haul it to the—. You talking about a big corn pile! Have a corn shucking and Mama and them and womenfolk cooking.
EDDIE McCOY:
People come from everywhere, didn't they?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I'm telling you.
EDDIE McCOY:
Y'all party?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
All the neighbors, all the neighbors. Had a good time back there. It was— twon't like no time now. These youngsters now, they don't know nothing. Just fast rooting and running and killing folks [in Durham]. We had a happy life. I'm telling you.
EDDIE McCOY:
Y'all went from one corn shucking to the other?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Right!
EDDIE McCOY:
Party, drinking and having a good time.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-uh, didn't drink nothing. No, uh-uh. No, they ain't drunk nothing. Oh, no.
EDDIE McCOY:
You sure they ain't slipped a little of that old blackberry wine or—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, no. No, didn't have nothing like that.
EDDIE McCOY:
Apple wine?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Just had—just food. Cakes and pies, chicken and all. We would have the best

Page 15
time at them corn shuckings. [That way] we growed up. Uh-uh, we won't no rough bunch. Uh-uh. Won't nobody in our family no rough bunch.
EDDIE McCOY:
What was your father's name?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
[Letcher] Pointer. [Letcher]. And William [Letcher] we have named after his grandaddy, William Pointer.
EDDIE McCOY:
What kin are you to him?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
He is my nephew! My brother, Will, lives here in town. That's Will. Letcher and Mickey's here, Charles is in Baltimore, and Lewis is down in Texas, somewhere in Texas. Has four boys.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK. I want to know what year was you born in.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I just told you I was born March 10, 1910.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK. How old are you now?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I'm eight-four.
EDDIE McCOY:
When's your next birthday?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
After Christmas, after January and February, then come March. I ain't dumb as you think I am [laughter] . I got my good mind even if I am old. I got my good mind.
EDDIE McCOY:
Now what about the pigs? Did y'all sell some of the meat, or eat it all?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No sir. No sir. Them great big hogs like this here, when they killed them hogs, had a smokehouse for them hogs.
EDDIE McCOY:
A smokehouse? What's a smokehouse?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
That's where you keep meat, keep hog meat. And when time comes to smoke it, make up a fire and that smoke would smoke that meat. That was the best tasting meat

Page 16
ever you seen. That's what I say, you—.
EDDIE McCOY:
That smoke take what out of the meat?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
That smoke went in that meat. Hickory something. Some kind of hickory wood and burn and smoke that meat. After it had them seasoning, smoke that meat.
EDDIE McCOY:
And that put them flavor in the meat?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, after this little seasoning. When they kill the hog, when they first—they put salt on it and all that, you know. And then after that meat got dry, wash that salt off it and then put black pepper and all that on it and hang it up in the smokehouse. Then they get hickory stuff and do a fire under, and then that hickory smoke go in that meat. That's the best tasting meat! You won't eat no meat this day and time that tastes like it would. In the fall of the year, kill a cow. Kill a cow and get the entrails out of her and all. Hang that cow up in the barn. We eat! My family, we eat.
EDDIE McCOY:
The cows, too.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Whole—kill a whole cow. Fall of the year, hang up in the barn. Now, I'm telling you facts what I know.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did y'all have electric lights in the school?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No.
EDDIE McCOY:
What'd you have?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
A lamp.
EDDIE McCOY:
A lamp?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
A lamp and a lantern that we had in our home.
EDDIE McCOY:
What's a lantern?

Page 17
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
A lantern's something that gives light. A lantern with a handle like the men tote at night going to the barn and all like-a-that.
EDDIE McCOY:
What got holes in the top of it?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh, a lantern. You ain't never—.
EDDIE McCOY:
You put it in the [chicken coop]?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Huh?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh. [I ain't never seen—.]
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
You didn't ever—. Oh, they had more lanterns. Everybody had a lantern, with the globe, the wick and all up there. And the lantern had a handle you'd hold in your hand and go at night. That way you see at night, them menfolks. Man, you don't know nothing!
EDDIE McCOY:
Where'd y'all get your water from, a well at home? Or y'all—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
We had a spring. We'd get water from a spring.
EDDIE McCOY:
How far was it from your house?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
This spring won't far. Just right down the hill to the spring.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh. What kind of games did y'all play on Sunday when you'd visit other people, your relatives and stuff?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, Lord. Let me tell you. We—our cousins—Uncle Ed married my Aunt Amy and she had a gang of children. [Uncle Steve] and all those children. [Our house here] and they'd go down across the creek and up to their house. After we'd come from church and eat and all, we'd go over there. Man, we'd go up under the barn shed and get in the wagon. And Ricky Smith, that was Uncle Ed's son, he was the preacher. He'd get up there and preach. We had the service, we children, just like we'd see the folks do in church.

Page 18
EDDIE McCOY:
What's a bush arbor?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
A bush arbor? A bush arbor is something—. You put up four posts and you put the top on it and you cut bushes and throw over that so you're in the shade. That's [when] you're in the shade, keep the sun from shining on you.
EDDIE McCOY:
And that's a bush arbor?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Bush arbor. We used to go [to association in a church where all they had was the longest bush arbor] where folks get under that.
EDDIE McCOY:
And the preacher would preach under the bush arbor?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, sometimes a preacher would come out and preach under there. We'd have service in the church—that was association time.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK, there'd be one preacher in the church and one outside?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, I don't know how many preachers would be—. A lot of preachers in church association—preachers from all churches.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK, and that's a bush arbor?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, that's a bush arbor.
EDDIE McCOY:
Why did you have to—in slavery, you had to turn a pot down at the door to keep the sound—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
That was my grandma's time now, so listen, I don't know nothing about that. I know what my grandma told me.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
See. I don't where the slaveries didn't want them to have service or not, but that's what Grandma said. All the colored people around would go to a place that have a

Page 19
great big black pot. And said they would turn that pot down and then they'd get around and sing and pray.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-hum.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Until she got old enough to get wise, you know, know something. So she asked the man, said, "Listen, we want a church." Said, "We want a church where we can go and [serve]."
EDDIE McCOY:
Mr. Pittard?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
A Mr. Pittard. I don't know his name. I don't know his name, but he had a son. I knowed Arthur Pittard, I knowed Cliff Pittard, but they is dead. Pittard's children, all them is dead. But he's got grandchildren somewhere.
EDDIE McCOY:
They still own the land up there in northern Granville?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh. He got one grandson that don't live too far from me. And his name is Don Pittard. Cause he lives in a great big brick house and he farms and all that. I know him. His name is Don. Now this man that give Grandma land, this is this boy's great — his grandaddy, I know, his daddy's daddy.
EDDIE McCOY:
He named your grandmother?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Huh?
EDDIE McCOY:
He named your grandmother?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Who, the Pittards?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh. What was your mother's mother's name?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Grandma Margaret.
EDDIE McCOY:
What was her last name?

Page 20
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Grandma Margaret. She was a Yancey and she married a Downey. That was before my time, now. I just know what Grandma told me.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-hum. So, when y'all worked around the yard—? Your mother and father, how did they—was they good to y'all? And worked and made y'all—? I know they wanted you to go to school, didn't they?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh yeah, we went to school in school time. School didn't start before October. Yeah.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-hum.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, I had a good mama. My mama won't no fighting mama. If we'd do wrong or something, she would set down and explain to us, "Now, don't do that no more, now. If you do, you get a whipping." I had a good mama. My mama never did beat none of us. I heard children talk, "Well, my mama and daddy beat me and whips on me." I'd say, "They ain't never whipped on me." I had a good mama and daddy.
EDDIE McCOY:
Tell me about the first time you came to Oxford. What did you see?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Lord, have mercy. It's been so long, I can't tell.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did you come on a wagon?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, yeah. We had to come on a wagon.
EDDIE McCOY:
Way out from out there to Oxford?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, yeah.
EDDIE McCOY:
Take you all day to get here!
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah. Anniversary—man, you don't know anything about it. [Used to have] an anniversary in Oxford in June.

Page 21
EDDIE McCOY:
At the orphanage?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
At the orphanage. We would come on the wagon. Daddy would bring us. Yeah, go to the anniversary.
EDDIE McCOY:
Stay overnight?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-uh! This was for one day! Leave home way that morning before day, [book] down here to Oxford, and get there, and he would leave here in time enough to get home.
EDDIE McCOY:
Do you know some of the speakers that was down there, or who was in charge of the orphanage?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I don't know. Cause what we would do was walk on the grounds and go around the tables and buy stuff and see all them funny things they had, see. I can't tell you nothing about the service. I was too young.
EDDIE McCOY:
They were raising money for the orphanage children.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I think so.
EDDIE McCOY:
That's why they had association?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I think so. Anniversary!
EDDIE McCOY:
Anniversary.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
This was the anniversary. We have associations now, this day and time.
EDDIE McCOY:
Who was your first minister that you knew of when you was coming up?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
At Jonathon Creek?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My first minister was Reverend Eli B. Thomas from Durham. He baptized me.

Page 22
We was baptized in the creek.
EDDIE McCOY:
How did he get way up there? Come and stay overnight from Durham, or what?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
See, they had conference on a fourth Saturday. And Reverend Eli Thomas would come and he would stay all night and sometime he'd go home and then he'd come that Sunday. But a lot of times he would stay. Him and his wife, Mrs. Thomas, they would stay all night a lot of times.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh. At people's houses up there? One would have him one night and another—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, who had picked the preacher was the deacons and their wives. My daddy was a deacon.
EDDIE McCOY:
What was his father? His father ever was a deacon?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My daddy's?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I told you, I don't know nothing about my grandaddy. I just didn't know him. And Grandma Dicey. I just didn't know them.
EDDIE McCOY:
Your mother made y'all's clothes—pants, shirts and stuff like that? Who sewed for y'all?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
[Laughter.] I declare, you ask a heap of questions. Back there, we had a seamstress in the family. My Aunt Amy's daughter, Jessie Brooks—she's living now—her mama learned her how to sew. And Aunt Amy would make our clothes until my oldest sister got old enough and she learned how to sew and they would make our clothes. And Mama would go to the store and she'd buy us little things cause back there this white domestic cloth

Page 23
won't but five cents a yard. Way back there then my Mama would go to the store and buy little stuff. We had clothes alright.
EDDIE McCOY:
What would you do with the [graham] bags?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
What?
EDDIE McCOY:
What did y'all make out of the [graham] bags? What kind of clothes did you make out of them?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Old graham bags. Oh, Lord, there years ago, they used to get [unknown] or something in a old white sack, great big old white sack. And my mama would take them things, yeah, take them sacks and wash that print out and make them boys shirts and things. Yeah!
EDDIE McCOY:
What about—? I heard that when you're in slavery, they don't give you nothing but biscuits on Sunday because that's your dessert.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Now, I don't nothing about that. I don't even know—. Grandma didn't tell us that.
EDDIE McCOY:
She didn't?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, uh-uh. Didn't tell us nothing about what they give us and all.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did you have a boyfriend when you was coming up as a kid?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, no. We children back yonder didn't know nothing about no boyfriends. We would get together and play and we were eleven and twelve years old and didn't know nothing but play. Didn't have no boyfriend. I didn't get no boyfriend, kiss no boyfriend til I was way on up yonder seventeen or eighteen years old. No, Lord. Uh-uh. And then my sister—. My sister, Hettie, was older than I was and she had a boyfriend. Well, Mama let me

Page 24
go in the room and sit with her, you know. Them old people didn't let no girls by theirselves with no boys. Oh, no.
EDDIE McCOY:
They didn't?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, no. My sister, Hettie, her boyfriend would come. My mama—I was the next to her, the girl, you know—let me go in there and sit. And that way I learned a whole lot just sitting up listening to them talk.
And then after awhile, the one what come and see my sister, Hettie—well, this man where I married was a friend of his. And so, when he got big enough and all, you know, he asked him, "You see Louise?"
He would go back and tell him, you know, "I'm going up there."
So he started to coming. Well, my mama and daddy liked them cause my boyfriend's daddy had land and a home just like my mama and daddy. And this boy come to see me and I fell in love with him. I married him. I married the twenty—Lord, if I had my pocketbook with me—. I married the twenty-first of February, nineteen and thirty-four. Me and him went to South Boston and married in South Boston.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where was your husband from?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
He was about five or six miles from me. He lived back down towards Davis Chapel. And his name was Roy Morton.
EDDIE McCOY:
What was his daddy's name?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
His daddy's name was Jack Morton. His mama's name was Nettie [Umstead] Morton. And they was fine people. And yeah, I married him. That was the only man that I ever see or loved [in my life] and let me tell you. You talking about smart—he was so smart.

Page 25
Whoo, me and him worked together. And I got a home up yonder—[at] home, right now, [been there]. He's been dead thirty—I think I counted up thirty-seven years. He died the seventh day of December, nineteen and fifty-seven. And I'm at the same place now. We had bought us a place. Me and him worked together and bought it and paid for it before we moved where I am now.
EDDIE McCOY:
What did y'all do about stuff? Did y'all come to town and buy food? Or did you raise everything?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
We raised everything. Had a garden in the summertime and cane and [unknown]. And we had our meat. We had everything. We had wheat. Thrash it, that was our flour. Had corn we'd carry to the corn mill, that was our meal. What time is it? I don't want to miss my lunch in here talking to you [laughter] . What time do you have?
EDDIE McCOY:
Well, you know, you got to tell me about what happened when everybody started leaving home.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
See what they [eating].
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-uh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
When everybody started leaving my home, you're talking about? When the older children left?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Well, we were doing just like the older children were living there. We still farmed and carried on. We [did something like that], didn't stop farming and doing. We still carried on after the older ones—every one married and leave out—then, we'd still do our home

Page 26
work.
EDDIE McCOY:
Who would help y'all with your lesson at night? You helped each other or what?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
We helped each other. [Get around that table] and one of us, the oldest one, he'd tell us them words and everything.
EDDIE McCOY:
Which one of your sisters and brothers was the smartest, close to you, that you knew about? Were you the smartest girl?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, I think my youngest sister, Beatie. Cause she went to school and graduated.
EDDIE McCOY:
Tell me about Beatie. Tell me something about Beatie.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, I wish you could see Beatie [laughter] .
EDDIE McCOY:
Was she fast?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
What you talking about? Oh, Beatie was something [laughter] .
EDDIE McCOY:
You couldn't keep up with Beatie, could you?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
And she was the youngest girl. Her name was Beatrice. We called her Beatie. She lives now in Detroit. She's in Detroit now. Her husband, he's in a home. See, my oldest sister, Hettie, married [Lewis Puryear] and she went there. And so, after Beatie got grown and all, finished college and all, "Mama, I believe I'll go after sister Hettie." Mama told her, "Well, alright, if you want to go." So she went up there and after she went up there, she found a man named Dan Webster and she married him. Well, he was working at the Ford place. See, they was making money there. That man made money. My sister Beatie's sitting pretty. Yeah, she went to Detroit.
EDDIE McCOY:
What college did she finish?

Page 27
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Beatie finished here in Oxford.
EDDIE McCOY:
She finished Mary Potter High School?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh, Mary Potter High School.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where did she start teaching at?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
She didn't ever teach.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did your mother teach?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-uh.
EDDIE McCOY:
Her sisters were teachers?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, and none of my sisters never were no teachers.
EDDIE McCOY:
What about your mother and father or sisters and brothers?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, my mother and father were way back yonder. They didn't go to no college or nothing like that. No. Man, they're way back yonder. Uh-hum. I don't reckon they even had all these colleges back yonder in their time.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did you have a mailman?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, the mailman carried the route. Yeah, the mailman drove a buggy.
EDDIE McCOY:
A buggy?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
A buggy. [He had] all them things up around him, you know, to keep him warm back there in the [unknown]. His name was [Fred Webster]. He's from Virgilina. I know [it was my first neighbor's name].
EDDIE McCOY:
Was he a white man?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
He was a white man. Fred Webster. Oh, he carried mail for years and years. And now, these late years—we used to get all our—in Virginia [mail name]. So these late

Page 28
years, they put us where in North Carolina, put us back here to Oxford, where we ought to been all the time. They said children were going to school and so what you had for Virgilina, we lived in North Carolina. So they straightened that out. And so now my mail's from Oxford, but it used to be Virgilina, Virginia.
EDDIE McCOY:
Can you name some of the children that lived over there in Virginia, on the Virginia side, that came to your school?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
That come to my school?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, uh-uh. No, I can't name none. No, I couldn't remember.
EDDIE McCOY:
So, you live by yourself now?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-hum, stay by myself. Yeah, stay by myself. I got a foster daughter named Margaret. She lives in New York. And before my husband died, we adopted a son by name James Edward Morton. We adopted him. And when we adopted him, we carried him to the doctor to have him examined and the doctor told us he had an enlarged heart. And so, my husband died in '57 and this boy died in '68. I think he lived eleven years after my husband died. But he was born with an enlarged heart. But we stuck by that boy and took care of him. Whoo, he was a mighty fine boy. Uh-huh, so he lived to get twenty-nine years old.
EDDIE McCOY:
How was the school? Was it muddy getting to the school?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Going to the school, yeah, if it rained or snowed or something. But if it snowed, they took us on the wagon. They would carry us.
EDDIE McCOY:
Some days, the weather would be so bad, y'all didn't have school?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
We had school every day. That's why them boys carry us on the wagon. And

Page 29
like raining—after we'd get to school, if it was raining and all, we would walk home.
EDDIE McCOY:
How did the teacher get there?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
The teacher boarded with—she would board to a house close to the school.
EDDIE McCOY:
You don't know the first teacher you went to?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, I can't think of [unknown].
EDDIE McCOY:
Huh?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I know one named Isabel Davis. That was my cousin and she boarded right there at my grandma's where [I'm telling you not far from the church]. They be fixing to eat in yonder or something. Here, you ain't—you have caught everything I've said on this thing?
[Recorder is turned off and then back on.]
EDDIE McCOY:
Mrs. Morton, today is December [pause]
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
December the 13th.
EDDIE McCOY:
December the 13th, 1994. Mrs. Morton, I forgot yesterday to ask you what your address, and your post office box, or your mail box. Will you give me your address? You say it's [text deleted] ? Is that right?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Right.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK. How long you been living on that road?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Living on that road every—I know every since '50. But I [unknown]. But ever since '50, I know I been on that road.

Page 30
EDDIE McCOY:
Mrs. [Jones], yesterday when we was interviewing, I did not put down the place where it was taken care of. Today, we're going to talk about that. We are at 120 Orange Street. We're at the Senior Citizen's Facility where they have recreation and they socialize and they have a meal before they go home. Now, I want you to bring me up to date on reasons why you like this facility and how is it that it has enhanced the community and brought—shed light on the community and you can visit and socialize. You tell me about what you like about it.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, I enjoy it cause I can come in, we get together and we talk and we definitely enjoy one another and we have lunch and we—oh, do so many different things. If I want to, I can go in and take up this craftwork. At my age, I can't make the little small stitches, so I just enjoy looking at other people do that. It's just a nice place for we senior citizens to come and enjoy ourselves. That's all I know.
EDDIE McCOY:
I need you to go back and let's talk about a little slavery and what you heard.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Well, all I know about slavery is what my Grandmother Margaret—.
EDDIE McCOY:
Do you know her whole name?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Margaret Yancey Downey. I was a good-sized girl, but I can remember some things she said. So I heard her talk about when she was a young girl, she was a slave for the Pittards. She stayed there and worked at home and done along. And I don't know after staying there so long—. I know she got married cause her husband's name—. That was my grandaddy, Grandaddy Stephen. I know she married but I never did hear her tell about her married life and all, but I know she married cause she had a gang of children. I could count up the girls and the boys—.

Page 31
EDDIE McCOY:
Did she ever tell you that she went to the church with her master, her bossman?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, uh-uh. They didn't go to church. She and her friends what lived close-by where she was, in order for them to have a little praise service to praise the Lord and to thank Him [what if He was to them], they would meet, gather together, and they would turn down a pot. She told us they would turn the pot down, they'd all get around and there's where they would sing and pray. But she never did tell me why they turned that pot down, so I just put it in my own words. I believe they done that to keep the sound from the white people hearing the sound, what they would do. That was my idea, but she didn't ever tell me that.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-hum. I think that that was the reason, too, I was told. Were they good to her and her husband? The Pittards?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, yeah. Cause she stayed there for years and years. They bound to been good to her.
EDDIE McCOY:
Could she read and write?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My grandma? I just don't know. I didn't ever—. See, I was so small and that's been years ago. She was born back yonder in the 1800s.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-hum. So you and your mother and father, y'all was going to Jonathon Creek. Always have.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh. Yeah, let me tell you the first starting of [Johnson] Creek. My grandmother—they used to—after they would have their service here and those people — so she told Mr. Pittard, the man she was staying with—she was a slave for him. So she told him, "Look-a-here, we wants some land for a church," said, "we need a church." And so Mr. Pittard gave her this land, now, for to build—. He gave her the land. I don't know what—I

Page 32
don't know how much it was. Anyhow, the mens got together and put a log church there and they named it Johnson Creek Church. That's the first starting of it.
EDDIE McCOY:
Was it named after some individual?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I just—I don't know where that name come from. That's the name they named it, Johnson Creek Church.
EDDIE McCOY:
You know, I interviewed a man and his master gave him some land and they didn't have a church. And do you know what he did? He told his master that what I want to do is—. I don't want no house. I'd rather build a church first and I'll live like I've been living. Now, if a man give up land for a church and he want to stay in the condition he's in, that was a mighty good person.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I'm telling you.
EDDIE McCOY:
And that's what your—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My grandma. The man give her this land. They built the church. I don't reckon back there [unknown], I don't reckon. Anyhow, 'twas a spot and way back yonder, she said the first church was there, they went in and cut logs and built a log church. Now, that would have been way back yonder. That was back yonder.
EDDIE McCOY:
That was nice of her to give up—.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-hum. And so this man, their church was named Grassy Creek and maybe—they named this Johnson Creek—maybe the name might come from that church, but Johnson—.
EDDIE McCOY:
Who? What church was Grassy Creek?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Grassy Creek was the white people's church and that's still down there, a great big brick church.

Page 33
EDDIE McCOY:
Well, who uses it?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
They have services there now.
EDDIE McCOY:
Well, where did Grassy Creek Church come from? How did they get—? The white church was before the black one?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, yeah. This white church was there, I'm quite sure. That's been years ago, but the name of that church is Grassy Creek and that's the white people's church.
EDDIE McCOY:
And that's the one that you think your great-grandmother went to?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
That's where I think that's where that name come from.
EDDIE McCOY:
From Grassy Creek?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-huh. And this is Johnson Creek.
EDDIE McCOY:
And they just put Johnson Creek—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Johnson Creek, but they put that Creek in there. That's what I think. I'm not sure, now, but that's what I think happened. See, that was way back yonder. That was back yonder.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did you have a lot of members in the family that lived together, like your uncles, your aunts and different cousins and stuff like that? Did you have that?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, yeah. Uh-huh. Lord, my mama—. I don't know how many sisters my mama didn't have. Uh-huh. Was seven or eight, I know. And I know two brothers.
EDDIE McCOY:
Two of whose brothers.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
My mama had two brothers, Uncle Jim and Uncle [unknown].
EDDIE McCOY:
Tell me about Uncle Jim.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uncle Jim, he was the oldest child. Yeah, he was the oldest child. He didn't

Page 34
farm and do. After he got grown and all, he went to New York. He's dead now, but his — he's got a daughter in New York living. And her name is Addie B. She's married. Addie B. Downey—Downey, Downey, Downey what? Addie B. Downey something. She's married now.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did he go to the first Johnson Creek school, or the second Johnson Creek school? You know it was moved? It was built somewhere else and then they built it again.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Who you talking about, my uncle?
EDDIE McCOY:
Yeah.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, no. Let me tell you, that far back I don't think he went to no school, I don't think. I just don't think. Cause, man, that's way back yonder.
EDDIE McCOY:
What was the school's name?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Johnson Creek School.
EDDIE McCOY:
Oh, the school was named after the church.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, Johnson Creek School. I 've been hearing that all my life, Johnson Creek School.
EDDIE McCOY:
What men in the area—your father—contributed to the school, like bringing wood to make sure y'all have wood and little things like that? How did you do? They got the wood the day before school turned out, or they got it after they got—?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
All I know 'twas wood there for fire. We heated with the wood there.
EDDIE McCOY:
Was this slabs?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, they'd cut down trees.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.

Page 35
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-hum. 'Twas wood there for us to keep fire.
EDDIE McCOY:
How was the men in the community? Did they do real well, go to church and look after each other?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Oh, yeah. Yeah.
EDDIE McCOY:
Y'all worked together as a community.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Sure. This community was most of us family. The [Downey's] family.
EDDIE McCOY:
And y'all stayed in the same church.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Yeah, all of us the same church. Uh-hum.
EDDIE McCOY:
So, can you name any of your teachers?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I told you yesterday [laughter] . Isabel Davis, Morton Lassiter, and we had some from Roxboro. It's been so long I can't think of names. And one from over here at Oxford. She was a Cannady, a Cannaday lady. Law, we had more teachers in a look. Now Isabel Davis, that's my first cousin, my mama's sister's daughter. Yeah, Morton Lassiter.
EDDIE McCOY:
How many children did you have?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Who me? No children. I never did have no children. I had one—when my husband was living, we adopted us a son. His name was James. And then after he died, then I got a foster daughter, Margaret. She lives in Spring Valley, New York. No, I never did have no children.
EDDIE McCOY:
OK. So you traveled a lot, didn't you?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Not too much. I just go to see my youngest sister, Beatie—Beatrice is her name—she lives in Detroit. And then my next to the oldest sister, Hettie, she lived in Detroit, but she passed. And her children are up there. My nieces and nephews, they're all up in Detroit.

Page 36
EDDIE McCOY:
Do you go to visit them?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-hum. Yeah. I go to visit sometime. They come see me the most, cause they know at my age you can't travel like I used to. So we had a family reunion and I think we had it two or three years. It went up there once and now it's back the year to Oxford. I reckon it's—not this year. It might be next year.
EDDIE McCOY:
What's the farthest you've been? Detroit as far as you've been?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Detroit is as far as I've been.
EDDIE McCOY:
Have you ever been to New York?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
No, I haven't never been to New York. But I've been to Detroit several times.
EDDIE McCOY:
Do you remember voting? Can you tell me how y'all voted? Do you remember the first time y'all started voting? Didn't you have to read before you could vote? Or what happened? Tell me about that.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
[laughter] Let me tell you, the first time I started to vote—. It had been about—I don't know where—eleven or twelve years ago, maybe longer, I just can't think now. Anyhow, Mrs. [R.E. Burton] up here on [unknown]—. You know her? Mrs. Burton come around and got all our names and signed us up. Mrs. Burton got us to vote.
EDDIE McCOY:
Was it in the 40s or 50s or 60s?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
I'll be blessed if I know. I know I've been voting a long time.
EDDIE McCOY:
Where did you vote at when you first voted?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Up at [Totus] School.
EDDIE McCOY:
Did you have to read something?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Uh-uh. We never did read nothing.

Page 37
EDDIE McCOY:
OK, so you just started voting in the 60s then.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Didn't have to read nothing. I'm telling you, Mrs. Burton come around and got all our names and signed us up. And when voting come, we went and our name was on that record. We had to vote.
EDDIE McCOY:
Was there an incident in your community that a child got hurt or got hit or something? Can you remember an incident that stayed with you all the time that was an accident?
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Somebody stayed with me?
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-uh. I'm talking about some kid in the community got hurt or something real bad.
LOUISE POINTER MORTON:
Listen, that's been—. The mama's name was [Linie]—we used to say [Linie Ned] but she's a Wilkerson. She had six or seven, maybe more children. She had a house full of children cause we—I've been there, played with those children. Well, years past. I don't know, the children grew up and they were working or something. Anyhow, one of her boys got killed or—. He was on a slide, they say, and the mule dragged and killed him. He was buried in my church.
EDDIE McCOY:
Uh-huh.
[END OF TAPE 1, SIDE A]

[TAPE 1, SIDE B]

[START OF TAPE 1, SIDE B]
EDDIE McCOY:
… it's one o'clock.
END OF INTERVIEW