"Former Slaves, the
Success Story of a
By Lewis D. Savage
False Myths Used to Perpetuate the Slave System
In Kenneth M. Stampp's book, "The Peculiar Institution" he points out some very interesting, but false myths set forth and frequently repeated by the slave owners and their allies to bolster the slave system in the face of a growing critical attitude on the part of many other people.
The first myth put forth was that the creator had designed the Negroes for labor in the South in raising tobacco, sugar cane, and cotton. In contrast to others, Negroes possessed certain traits which uniquely fitted them for bondage. That by intellect and temperament the Negro was a natural slave of the white.
Another myth or reason why Negroes were kept in bondage was they were barbarians who needed to be subject to rigid control for their own good. These false myths must not be taken for facts.
The Slave Background of Julia Fulcher Hall
main purpose of this article is to share with you an unusual success story of a
his 6 slaves had increased to 16. Nine
of these slaves ran away from the Daggs farm, and in a few days made their way
The Halls Prove Good Farm Renters and Buy a Farm
This success story is about
Julia and her family. Julia didn't get
her freedom until after the end of the Civil War. She married Hezekiah Hall, who although they
could not read or write, with the incentive of freedom they became
sharecroppers at first and proved to be hard workers and good farmers. Judge Givens sought them out to rent his farm
of about 100 acres near
News Interview Reveals Sam Hall's Long Successful Life
In sharing this success story, I want to include a newspaper
interview of Samuel Hall, the son of Hezekiah and Julia Hall, from "The
Daily Gate City" of Keokuk, dated
The Daily Gate City,
-Samuel Hezekia Hall, one of
The son of Hezekiah and Julia Anne Hall, Hezekia was born on
the Scott Miller farm near Luray on
Within a few years of the time this family was released from slavery, their industry had paid for the farm with honest, sweat and toil, minding their own business and managing their meager funds to the best of ability. That is good practice for any man, regardless of color.
The original home, roughly built, was eventually replaced by
a five room comfortable cottage in 1946.
There are those in
Of a large family, Sam and a sister, Mrs. Vicey Hicks of
During his long and successful life, Mr. Hall has observed
many changes in
During his earlier days, Sam worked for Thomas Whalean, Grandfather of the present day Tom Whalan on a farm now owned by Mr. and Mrs. Haage. It was known years ago as the Mahler farm. The pay was .75 a day, dinner included. Today men make more in a half hour than he made in a day. He has worked hard all his life, but hard work has made him sturdy and healthy. At 75 he still did a hard day's work on the farm chopping wood, mending fences, farming with horse-drawn machinery.
Today (90th year) Sam possesses a remarkably keen mind recalling interesting stories of other years. He is now plagued by rheumatism. He must forego his favorite recreation squirrel hunting. His gun rests in a corner, his dogs lie in the shade and snooze.
A peaceful atmosphere is all that Sam asks and he has been
able to enjoy it. He loves the rolling
acres that slope to quiet dells along
Sam is blessed with the comforting presence of a devoted wife and son. The latter has won the respect of those who know the family through his care of his father. If more men were as Ira, his father and mother, there would be no penitentiaries, jails nor troubles. Attorneys would need only to confine their activities to estates and squabbles, not criminal sharpies.
When visited by the writer, Sam and Lulu were in the garden, busy with butterbeans. Ira had gone to town with the milk. Twenty-five darling baby guineas were nesting in the kitchen in a box. There were other farm poultry and animals about. After a pleasant chat, one left the aged pair with the feeling this is the way to grow old -gracefully and generously.
Sam and Lulu face the sunset of life with a fortitude and confidence backed by nearly a century of experience and hardships, but faith in each other and a higher being. They are worthy of emulation, they are deserving of a card of greeting on August 4th, honoring a quiet old couple who have learned well the art of living."
The last part of this success story is about Ira Hall, son of Samuel and Lulu Hall.
Ira Hall's News Write-up Reveals Higher and Wider Success in Life
It is also taken directly from a newspaper account from "The Media"
Vernon Hall, 81, of rural Kahoka, died at his home on
services were held on
Pallbearers were: Joe Young, Steve Gregory, Delbert Haprper, Alonzo Malone, Girden Davis and Rupert Conn.
may be made to the
Mr. Hall was the son of Samuel Hezekia and Lulu Mae Cole Hall.
He was a farmer and had lived all of his life in
Mr. Hall was chosen by the Chamber of Commerce to serve as the grand marshal of the 100th Old Settlers parade which was held in September, 1983.
The following letter was submitted to the Chamber of Commerce by Jane Golliher, nominating Ira Hall as grand marshal for Old Settlers parade. We felt this information best described Mr. Hall.
Dear Chamber of Commerce,
I think Ira Hall should be awarded the honor of being the grand marshal in the 100th Old Settlers parade.
age 75, is the only lifetime black resident of
content on his farm in
Ira Hall once owned 500 acres, but he sold some to a neighbor when he "semi-retired". Now he has 105 acres. At one time he specialized in raising cattle and growing corn, soybeans, and rye. He still has some cattle, but his farming now is mainly a hobby. He sells most of his chicken and duck eggs. He raises sweet corn and other vegetables for himself in a patch behind one of the chicken coops. He also raises feed corn for his animals.
Farming comes natural to him. His parents, like his grandparents, were farmers. He was born on the farm where he still lives. Ira is the only child of Samuel Hezekia and Lulu Mae Cole Hall. He never married. He lived on the farm with his parents and his aunt until 1961. That year the tree of them died. But Ira says he hasn't been lonely since he has his neighbors, friends, and church. Ira says, "I don't feel a bit lonely. When you're at the Lord's side you don't feel a bit lonely". He has also served as a Red Cross volunteer for 20 years and currently serves on the townships Agricultural Stabilization and Conservation committee.
bout 1973, Ira has been a member of the First Baptist Church of Kahoka, serving
on the church board. Before that he
paternal grandfather was a slave whose owners brought him from
Ira attended high school in Keokuk, because Missouri Law would not permit him to attend school with whites in Kahoka. He left high school to return to work on the family farm because his parents were in poor health. He has been a farmer ever since, expect for a brief stint as a road construction laborer, helping build U.S. Route 61 and Missouri Route 81.
Though Ira Hall remembers all the bad times for blacks, he's still optimistic about his life. "The good Lord's been awful good to me," he said.
watching horse races at the county fair, an event he hasn't missed since
1936. Ira also enjoys studying the past
reading history books. He is
particularly interested in the history of
is much Ira Hall, one of the few blacks in
So, the Hall family is only one of many examples of former slaves who succeeded well on their own, when given the opportunity of freedom. -Lewis D. Savage
Source of References:
"The Peculiar Institution" -Stampp, Kenneth M.
History of the Daggs Family - census records and estate records of Ruel Daggs
Fugitive Slave Case -Ruel Daggs vs. Elihu Frazier et al George Frazee Reporter
Interview with Samuel Hall
"The Media" -
Memorial Write-up of Ira Hall
(Lewis D. Savage has been a life-long historian of
False Myths A-laid:
False myths of the slave system put aside by reality; these people free evidently did not need anyone to oversee their own success in life in the American story