Junie's Place: Farm Life of the Past: Mud Bottom Cotton Chopping-Summer1944

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Farm Life of the Past: Mud Bottom Cotton Chopping-Summer1944

Mreddie mentioned Blackberries in a recent post of his and it brought this story to my mind!

Mreddie is



This is another story from my husband's growing up years in Alabama- and this is mostly in his own words!

Mud Bottom Cotton Chopping - Summer 1944

The area where this story takes place was known as Mud Bottom. It was in the bend of the Elk River, where Alabama and Tennessee joined, in northern Limestone Co, Al. This river bottomland was excellent farmland. It was called Mud Bottom because of the, often, muddy conditions - especially in winter.

Cotton had to be chopped three times between it’s coming up out of the ground and laying it by. (end of plowing and chopping) With a family of ten children, and Daddy supervising, the work progressed at a steady pace!
(Or a steady CHOP- as it were!)

It was hard work in the sun all day, so we had to have drinking water. Usually one of the boys would be designated for this job. On this particular day Jack was sent to the house where the well was located, on this errand. The well water had to be transported in glass gallon jugs.

This day, Jack was gone an unusually long time, for the two-mile trip- there and back.

Finally, we could see him coming up the field road, with his bare feet kicking up the dust.
It seemed he would never get to us with the cool, fresh water! When he finally reached us we could see why it had taken him such a long time to make the trip.

On the way back with the water he had stopped at a blackberry patch and picked the jug half full of blackberries! That cool, fresh water was filled with all manner of trash, not to mention the small spiders, ants, and bugs!

He thought we would be thrilled that he had brought us the berries but water was what we needed and no one wanted to drink that water!

True to Jack’s sense of humor and personality he said, ”If no one else is going to drink it, I will! I don’t care how trashy it is! I’ll let my kidneys filter it out, all they do is set up in there and ride!”

And with that he tilted the jug and took a long swig!

Daddy looked at the sky and saw that the sun was about an hour high and said, “Let’s quit for the day!”

June Kellum
May 2006

Photo #1
Jack (same time period as story) peeking out from behind the well. ...chittlin'Pot in background...
...and oldest Brother, Gene with the two youngest girls of the family-Joyce and Mildred.

Photo #2
Brother Jack in about 1947- he was 17 here!



At 5:41 AM , Blogger Merle said...

Hi June ~~ Another good story from the past. Jack was not popular with his
berries. Great family stories.
The latest ride looks good, great photos. Thanks for comment.
Take care, Merle.

At 9:06 AM , Blogger JunieRose said...

Thanks Merle, for your visit and comments.

That story of Jack and the berries has always made me LOL!


At 9:46 AM , Blogger Peter said...

A good story June and Charles, things could sure get tough back in the day.

At 10:00 AM , Blogger JunieRose said...


Yes, things were tough-
but I think hard times make one appreciate things more!

:) -and there are some fun stories mixed in with the hard times, too!

Thanks for reading.


At 10:42 AM , Blogger Skye said...

Sounds like Jack could get up to all sorts of mischief! Good story, Junie! Glad I wasn't the one drinking that buggy water! :)

At 10:58 AM , Blogger JunieRose said...


Lol- YES! Jack was a character all his life!

With this story, I've wondered if it was designed to end the work day a little early! If so, it worked! :)


At 11:07 AM , Blogger Jacqui said...

Hi Junie, I been playing truant for a couple of days, just catching up with your ride and farm story.
I couldn't resist posting some pics of my roses, after seeing your beautiful one.
Your wild flowers lok so lovely, thanks for the pics so we can share in them
hugs jacqui

At 1:03 PM , Blogger JunieRose2005 said...


I saw your roses! Really Beautiful!



I put another of mine with a poem on my poem site (see side bar)

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