A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

African Americans in the Matawan Journal - 28 August 1875

The Matawan Journal of 28 August 1875, published 135 years ago, contains this crude rendering of the remarks of a local African-American woman who was unaccustomed to taking the train to the Shore. As the story goes, she told a friend at the station that she neither enjoyed the ride down nor her time spent down at the Branch on Salt Water Day. Not only are her manner of speech and level of education derided, but even her level of experience in the finer things is assumed to be lesser than the white readers of The Journal.

DEM ARE KEERS. One colored lady took the benefit of salt water day last Saturday, and embraced the opportunity for a holiday trip on the cars to the Branch. On her return in the afternon she was telling a friend at the station her experiences, and said : I ain't gwine ter ride in dem things agin, noway. Dey shook me so I was skeered most to def, and I didn't enjoy myself at de Branch a bit, kuse I knowed I had to come back in dem are keers, and ef my beau can't take me in a kerrige next time, I'll stay to home, kuze I ain't gwine to trust my bones in dem things agin.

The Central Railroad Co of New Jersey opened its full service to Long Branch a little over a week after this article, on 7 September 1875, according to Wikipedia. Presumably there was service to the Shore during the summer of 1875 involving a combination of train and bus. 


Post a Comment