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A Nigger went to a white man,
An' asked him for work; White man told de Nigger,
"Yes, git out o' yo' shirt."
Nigger got out o' his shirt,
An' went to work; When pay-day come,
White man say he ain't work 'nufL
If you work all de week,
An' work all de time, White man sho' to bring
Nigger out behin'.
A Negro at J. H. Williams's gin at Natchez, Louisiana, was overheard singing to himself as he looked at a bale of cotton:
Here sits de woodpecker
Learning how to figger, All for de white man
And nothing for de Nigger!
A similar sentiment of ironic comparison is expressed in an old song sent me by Judge Boyd, who says that it was sung by slaves before the war.
Monday mornm/ 'way 'io' day, White folks got me gwine. Sad'day night when de sun go down, True lub in my mind.
Oh, ho, Miss Mary, oh, ho, mah darling Hi, hi, Miss Mary, oh, ho, mah honey I
Little bees suck de blossoms,
Big bees eats de honey. Niggers make de cotton an' corn,
White folks 'ceive de money.
Certain reactions to the hardships of labor as the black man sees them are in a song given by Mary Lee Thurman, of Washington, through the courtesy of Mary Boyd, of Richmond.