Alabama

Reuben and Susan Scott were among the slaves who arrived in Alabama in 1847 with their owner William Stuart Bankhead, a descendant of Thomas Jefferson. For more than a century and a half, the Bankhead and Scott families have remained intertwined.  After emancipation, members of the Scott family stayed in Alabama, and found themselves locked in the grip of a sharecropping economy that, even by the mid-twentieth century, denied them opportunities to acquire land.  Their achievements in education were hard-won and the bonds of family were strong.  To this day descendants of the Scott and Bankhead families share a sense of community.  “I’ve never seen a place I liked as well,” Eliga Diggs says as he explains why he has never left Courtland, Alabama.Ed Scott and Millie Scott Young with Bankhead descendants

Excerpts

Eliga Diggs

Eliga Diggs

1935–
(video)
"I've never seen a place I liked as well"

Eliga Diggs explains why he never wanted to move away from Courtland, AL and the importance of family roots.

Theme: Family

Johnny James Young

Johnny James Young

1924–2002
(audio)
"We was a different people"

Johnny James Young speaks about the close knit comminuty where his family lived, Mountain Farm.

(audio)
“I heard about Aunt Millie all my life”

Cary Hotchkiss II describes Susan Scott’s daughter, Mildred Scott Young.

(audio)
“All the men and boys would have a baseball game”

Roger McWhorter and Cary Hotchkiss recall Sunday games featuring Johnny James Young’s pitching.

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