Oliver BELL *Interview with Oliver Bell* --Ruby Pickens Tartt, Livingston__ALABAMA _DE BES' FRIEND A NIGGER EVER HAD_ "I was borned on De Graffenreid Place," he said, "nine miles west of Livingston-Boyd Road. My mother was Luella De Graffenreid an' my pappy was Edmund De Graffenreid. Den dey changed my name to BELL. I had one brother, Nat, an' two sisters, Jestina, and CLARA. I has 'bout sixteen chilluns, all born on de same place an' most of dem is livin' dere yit. My chillun by my firs' wife are Ed, Jack, Holly, Buck, Clarence, Sally, Liza, Mag an' Luella. Dey ma was Mandy Powell, from York. Den my second wife, Betty Brown, gived me de res' of my chilluns. Le's see, dey is Jimmy, J.W., Alfonso, Wallace, Henry, Edna an' - " He hesitated. explained, "Dat's as many as I kin' `member jest now. [Illustration: _Oliver Bell, Livingston, Alabama_] "My gran'ma's name was Cely De Graffenreid an my gran'pa's name was Peter. He was a shoemaker fur de place an' made plows, too. He was a worker an' he learnt me how to pull fodder an' chop corn an' cotton when I was jest a little scamp jes' a little black nigger." "Us all b'longed to Mr. Tresvan De Graffenreid an' Mistus Rebecca;" ~ Alabama Slave Narratives Volume I: Author Work Projects Adminstration Release Date: May 02, 2011 I have the surname BELL on both sides of my family. My maternal 'BELL', surname derived from the name de Bayley an english derivative Beale and shortened to BELL, in the 1870 census they were enumerated Bailey. I learned of this through a European cousin match whose maternal surname is BALLENGEE. She claims a distant relationship to Robert de HOLLAND 1st Baron which explains my HOLLAND surname as well. My great grandfather Thomas Holland born 1823 married Dollie Bailey. My paternal Bell family which may include Clara BELL born 1795, her son William BELL, and William's daughter my great great grandmother, were named for the landmark, BELL'S LANDING in ALABAMA. The slaves of Bell's Landing belonged to the De Graffenreid's who were from Williamsburg, Lunenberg, Virginia, the children of Anthony Tscharner Degraffenreid who left a long will: http://familytreemaker.geneaology.com/users/e/g/Larry-E-England/WEB... It was dated February 8, 1774 and it named his son William De Graffenreid whose sons William JR b 1824 moved to Kentucky and Tresvan De Graffenreid to Alabama. William JR b1824 was also stationed in LOUISIANA around the Civil War era. In 1844, he sold two slaves: Before me, John Taylor, Parish Judge, came William De Graffenreid, who declares he has sold to Alex M. Taylor 2 slave boys, Jacob 12 and Robert, 10, for $500. 30 Jan 1844 signed: William De Graffenreid Alexander M. Taylor Witnesses: John Matthews, James K. Taylor Recorded 30 Jan 1844 Mind you, this doesn't explain for me how Wheat and my Bass family are related. Just like my previous blog "My Wheat Roots of Kentucky" it only shows the possibilities! My cousin Wheat has given me a list of other possibilities as well, Abraham Baugh, George Franklin Jones, Hugh Adkins, Abner Jones, Temperance Jackson and James Mc Farland, a name familiar to New Orleans, Louisiana where he sold a female slave named Patey born abt 1795 and her daughter to James Law (Louisiana Slave Records 1719-1820). There were Mc Farlands who indeed lived and traded in Union Parish, Louisiana such as Malcomb Mc Farland who purchased a ten year old Mahala from the estate of James Ramsey his father-in-law he was the surviving husband to Mary Ramsey Recorded in Book F, Page 38 in Court House Records Farmerville Louisiana. These are some of the possibilities.