Most Black folks had never traveled many miles from the area where they were born, but after the Civil War, others moved to northern cities seeking better lives for their families. For some, life was nothing more than survival with work from dawn to dusk; for others, life was an opportunity to provide a better existence for themselves and their family.
Black Folktales of the Muscle Shoals is a collection of stories from Black people interviewed by Huston Cobb Jr. and Rickey Butch Walker. In it, the authors share an array of personal stories about these individuals and their families who were tied to the land along the Muscle Shoals of the Tennessee River in northwest Alabama.
Some of the Black individuals interviewed identified themselves as mixed-ancestry descendants of Black slaves, White folks, and American Indians. Their stories are reminiscent of an era when life was much simpler, and change came slowly. When change came, it was primarily propelled by inventions, wars, and civil rights campaigns.
People who are interested in genealogy will find Black Folktales of the Muscle Shoals a wonderful source of information, including the census records of numerous Black families who are mentioned in the stories. Also included is a brief history of the relationship of American Indians and Black folks who called the land along the Muscle Shoals of the mighty Tennessee River home.