We raise de wheat,
Dey giv us de corn.
We bake de bread,
Dey giv us de crust.
We sif de meal,
Dey gib us de huss.
We peel de meat,
Dey giv us de skin.
And dat’s de way
Dey take us in:
We skim de pot,
Dey gib us de liquor
And say dat’s good enough for nigger
Between 1820-1860, slavery played an important role in the south. To
what extent did slavery in the south isolate blacks from whites?
My Bondage and My Freedom,
by Frederick Douglas, 1853
Untitled Slave Song
…During the ten years that I lived with Mrs. Banton, I do not think there were as many days, when she was
at home, that I, or some other slave, did not receive some kind of beating or abuse at her hands. It seemed as
though she could not live nor sleep unless some poor back was smarting, some head beating with pain, or
some eye filled with tears, around her. Her tender mercies were indeed cruel. She brought up her children to
imitate her example. Two of them manifested some dislike to the cruelties taught them by their mother, but
they never stood high in favor with her; indeed, any thing like humanity or kindness to a slave, was looked
upon by her as a great offence…One day Mistress told me to go over to the shop and let Master give me a
flogging. I knew the mode of punishing there too well. I would rather die than go. The poor fellow who
worked in the shop, a very skilful workman, neglected one day to pay over a half dollar that he had received
of a customer for a job of work. This was quite an unpardonable offence. No right is more strictly
maintained by slave holders, than the right they have to every cent of the slave's wages. The slave kept fifty
cents of his own wages in his pocket one night. This came to the knowledge of the Master. He called for the