Field Worker: Maurice R. Anderson
Name: Mrs. Adeline "Kemp" Collins
Residence: Wynnewood, Oklahoma
Date of Birth:
Place of Birth: Old Doxtol, Chickasaw Nation, Indian Territory
Mrs. Adeline "Kemp" Collins, negro, born at old Doxtol, Indian
Territory, Chickasaw Nation.
My father and mother came to the Indian Territory from Mississippi
with a bunch of Choctaw Indians and Master Jackson Kemp. Mr.
Kemp was a white man and his wife was a Choctaw Indian. My father and
mother belonged to Master Kemp.
I don't know what year I was born, but I was a big girl at the close of
the Civil War. Before I was large enough to go to
the field and work, I had to help with the house work and pick geese and keep the
yard clean. My mother did the cooking at the big house of Master Kemp's.
I remember one evening seeing my father whipped. Master Kemp
had a big post out in front of the house. This was where those who didn't mind were
tied and whipped. There was a big negro man who did the whipping. My father
had done something wrong. This big negro tied my father's hands around the post and
tied his feet. They pulled his shirt off before they tied him up. After he was
tied to this post, the negro who did the whipping had a long black snake whip, and he
stood off about five feet from the post, and when his whip would wrap around my father,
the blood would run down his back. The old master would have all the slaves sit down
around this whipping post and watch the whipping take place. The master's wife was a
kind hearted woman and she loved all of us children. She wouldn't let Master
Kemp whip us girls. She would say we belonged to her.
When the war was over, Master Kemp called everyone to the
big house. I remember it well. He called the women, children and men to the
front yard. After everyone had sat down he said, "The war is over and you are
free to go any place you want to, but if any of you want to stay and work for me you
can". Several of the men and their families left, but my father stayed and made
two crops, and Master Kemp gave him a yoke of steers and an ox wagon.
I remember we left there in the spring. I don't know what year it was, but it
was the second year after Master Kemp told us we were free.
There were my father, mother, sister, brother, and myself. We
settled on Blue Creek east of Tishomingo.
My father went to work for a white man who owned the cotton gin.
I remember a stage coach would come in about a hundred yards of the log
house we lived in. This stage forded Blue Creek below our house.
They would have four horses working to this stage. I don't know where it went
to, but I can remember seeing it pass about every week.
My sister was older than I and we would go hunting. We would take
the old muzzle loading rifle and start out. I have seen her kill a deer on several
of our hunts.
We lived on Blue Creek about two years then we moved to Cherokee
Town, on the Washita River. My father went to farming for a Mr.
Walner. His wife was an Indian woman and we all liked her.
My father would take corn to the mill at Old Mill Creek.
Governor Harris owned a grist mill there and I believe I heard my
father say that Mr. Harris was the Governor of the Chickasaw nation at
that time or had been at one time.
We kids didn't have shoes then to wear, not even in the winter time.
I was a grown girl by this time, and my brother was the first one of us children to
wear a pair of shoes. He helped a white man make some lumber for about a week and
this white man bought him a pair of shoes. I was a grown girl before I got any
We always had plenty of meat to eat. My brother would bring a turkey
or a deer home nearly everytime he went hunting.
I remember we had been living east of Cherokee Town about
a year or two when the first wagon train came through there. I remember they passed
about a quarter of a mile from our house. There were two white men working four yoke
of steers and they had two wagons. One wagon was hooked on behind the other one and
in a few weeks after this wagon train went through a stage coach came through there.
They were working four horses and the driver sat on top of the coach.
When we came to Cherokee Town there were lots of blanket
Indians camped at Cherokee Town, and all up and down the banks of the Washita
River. A white man issued beef to them every day.
I now live with my son in Wynnewood, Oklahoma.