NOW YOU TELL ME THAT IT WAS YOUR HUSBANDS INFLUENCE THAT GOT YOU TO REGISTER TO VOTE. COULD YOU TELL ME YOUR PERSONAL STORY OF GOING DOWN TO REGISTER TO VOTE? WHAT HAPPENED TO YOU?
In 1930 when I came to Tuskegee, I was not a registered voter because I was barely twenty years old. And when I reached the age of twenty-one, my late husband, who at that time was a county agent, brought me to the county courthouse and said, you are going to register. Well, I was acquainted with becoming a registered voter because when the women were given the right to vote in 1921, my mother with a horse and buggy used to go about and get people to go down to the registration office and help them to register, and that was in Savannah, Georgia. So I was acquainted with a little of the political way of doing things. Then when he took me down there to register, I had no trouble whatsoever, because I was a single person, just one. But when he began to take many people down there, they became suspicious, and this was long before the civil rights movement, much. People were concerned, black people were concerned about civil rights, the right to vote, or what not. They just were—decided that what we will—just take what comes along. And the only positions people had here were teachers. They had one or two doctors, other than that, most of the people were servants in the city, and of course, in the county. Most of them were sharecroppers. Some of them were renters and a very few of them were landowners living on the farm.