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!
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!”
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.
Brother Jack in about 1947- he was 17 here!
Labels: Farm Life of the Past