The Gilded Age
I would not wish upon another soul to go through life raised in the places I have been. War had ravished the lands all around us and only we could rebuild that. Everything started to look up with our President Lincoln and out of nowhere he is shot and killed. The only good part for people of my time was being the first generation of freed slaves, but what is freedom really?
Born in the great year of 1849, I have been owned and traded as a slave all my life. I was separated from my parents when I was six and sent off to a different plantation in Georgia. I am not really even sure where I was born seeing as how many places we were thrown to back and forth. I do know that I was proudly named Randolph Devon Martin. Luckily, I had my two younger brothers, Bic and Jambai and took them under my wing, keeping them close through all our hardships. The three of us practically bled cotton we worked with it so much. Father worked the cotton fields as well, while Mother tended to the plantation owner’s children.
This life of slavery was all we had ever known up until the end of the war. Word spread quickly of our release to be free American citizens. As exciting as the arrival of the news was, the reality was a little tougher to face. We knew what we were good at and had heard the stories of opportunity to the West, but we had absolutely nothing. We were starting from scratch in a brand new place and living our own lives.
Hoping for the best, me and my two brothers took a chance and hit the road to the West along with our fellow newly freed African American slaves. We were starting our new lives from scratch and it could not have felt any better. Our only real concern was figuring out what each of us wanted to do to get by and make a prosperous living for ourselves. This was an opportunity to be part of the American dream and to make the money we worked hard for and deserved. It seemed what was left of our family may actually head toward...