African American Lives 2 -- Hosted by Henry Louis Gates, Jr.
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Grandmother's first cousin. Tuchla, Mississippi Holmes County 1858 Tuchla (spelling??), Mississippi, Holmes County general conversations with grandmother and her cousins

My second great-grandfather, Stephen Cunliffe, was born to Richard Cunliffe and Rachel Ball (a slave), and lived in the "Big House", as he was born with blond hair and hazel eyes. A few years later Richard married Susan and they had a white daughter Alice. Both children were raised in the house together. Richard and his brother William went to fight in the Civil Ward to keep slavery. Richard was killed and William mustered out. Both brother and sister continued to be raised in the same house. Stephen told one of his daugthers that his grandmother (Richard's mother) would sit both he and Alice on her lap and cry about how lonely she was and all she had left was two grandbabies and one of them was a nigger. Up until he died in 1919, Stephan went to visit his sister, Alice, at her home where he had to walk around to the back of the house to enter to visit with her. I was told this was done to protect him, as well as, Alice because if it were known that they were brother and sister it could be the death of both of them.

Stephen Cunliffe, a land owner, married my second great grandmother, Virginia Cooper who graduated from Mississippi College in the 1890's during Reconstruction. I never knew about her, only that she was raised by her seven uncles and of course, they paid for the college education. She was Stephen second wife, almost consider an old maid when she married. Both of them were consider mulatoo at the time.

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