Davis and Reynolds: Treatment of Slaves

Although our country is still making strides to better ourselves, we have made huge progress when it comes to slavery. Not too long ago, a huge population of our country was greatly mistreated, but did you ever think about how much their lives could differ? Lucinda Davis and Mary Reynolds were both slaves, but their stories differ greatly.

First, I will introduce you to Lucinda Davis. Lucinda Davis belonged to Tuskaya-hiniha, a full-blood Indian Creek. During the Civil War she was just a child and the only language she knew was Creek. Tuskaya-hiniha bought Lucinda to care for his daughter Luwina’s baby boy. Lucinda was not his only slave; according to her there were, “as many slaves as I got fingers.” In the Creek slaves were not treated as bad as others were. All Lucinda had to do was “stay at de house and mind de baby.” Whenever Tuskaya-hiniha’s slaves were hungry they were allowed to eat and he would trade corn to get them clothes. Whenever someone was sick they would make a fire and keep it going until they got well or died. For funerals they wore nice clothes any many times were fed afterwards. After the war, she was freed, but she decided to stay with her master because she didn’t know where to go. Finally, her master got her back to her parents and later married and had children.

Mary Reynolds story is quite different from Lucinda’s. Dr. Kilpatrick was the master of Mary and her family, until he sold Mary to another man who had no family. She was sold cheap because “he didn’t want Miss Sara to play with no nigger young’un.” Mary was scared all the time. She was bought back by Dr. Kilpatrick to save his daughter Sara’s life. Dr. Kilpatrick had hundreds of slaves and whenever one would get to old to work in the fields he would sell them to buy a younger one.
Mary said that “slavery was the worst days was ever seed in the world. They was things past tellin’, but I got the scars on my old body to show to this day. I seed worse than what happened to me.” There was constant hunger and violence all around her.

Although both were born into awful times, Mary’s life as a slave was much harsher than Lucinda’s. Lucinda’s master at least acknowledged that she was human, she was fed and given clothes. Mary’s master, however, just treated her as one of many, each day leaving her hungry and scared. Neither master, treated these people in a way I would consider acceptable, but even under these horrendous circumstances it is amazing how big of a difference each persons life was.

Even though slavery is not a part of our society in the exact way it was during this time, it is important to realize that groups and individuals are still being taking advantage of in a similar way. We have made great strides, but there is still a long way to go.

 

*You can read their full stories by clicking on their names.

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1 Comment

  1. I like the way you tie this into the way we live today. It’s not just something that happened a long time ago.

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