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While performing with the group, Aida met her future husband, prominent vaudeville performer George Walker.
"Gens de Coleur Libres" Free People of Color New Orleans has a rich and significant legacy of being a city that once had 10's of thousands of Free Blacks, also known as "Gens de Coleur Libres". This rich and thriving Afro-French community was a noteworthy class of people. They were land owners, doctors, teachers, business owners, plantations owners, and artists. This unique social development can be attributed to the tradition of French colonialism.
WILLIAM ADAMS, age 93. "When I's little, my mammy and other folks used to talk about de signs. I hears dem talk about what happens to folks 'cause a spell was put on 'em. De old folks in dem days knows more about de signs dat de Lawd uses to reveal His laws den de folks of today. It am also true of de cullud folks in Africa, dey native land. Some of de folks laughs at their beliefs and says it am superstition, but it am knowin' how de Lawd reveals His laws." (Texas Slave Narratives c.1936-1938)
BEN HARMON, was born a Slave and is buried on a former plantation in Tennessee. The Great-grandfather of Sandra Arnold, a student at Fordham University, he served as the inspiration for Sandra's Project: she is working on the first National online database of sites where Enslaved African-Americans were buried. The database is being built with a team of advisers from Fordham and Yale University. (They are taking submissions at VanishingHistory.org.)
GUS JOHNSON, age 90 years or more, was born a Slave. "I used to hear somethin' 'bout rabbit foot. De old folks used to say dat iffen de rabbit have time to stop and lick he foot de dog can't track him no more and I allus wears de rabbit foot for good luck. I don't know if it brung me dat luck, though." (c. 1936-1938)
ELLEN POLK, Ex-Slave, born in Gonzales County, Texas. Age, 83. | "I had to feed de children while dere mudders was in de fields. De plantation was on de Guadalupe River and when dere was no meat de Slaves went to de river and killed wild hogs end turkeys and ketched fish. We groun' de co'n for cornbread and made hominy. And, O Lawd, de sugar cane, and what good 'lasses we used to make." (Library of Congress) (between 1937 and ca. 1938)
Image: a translated copy of the newspaper article from the New Orleans "Abeille" announcing a bounty for 6 Slaves who had escaped from the Duparc (Laura) Plantation, La.,1816.