Ebenezer Dortch.

Ebenezer Dortch was born in Kentucky, December 11, 1810, and died in Mt. Pleasant on Thursday, November 12, 1896, in his 86th year. He came to Mt. Pleasant from Tennessee about seven years ago last May, and made his home with his son-in-law, J. H. Mosley, and family, where during all his stay, he received the kindest attention and treatment. For some time, Mr. Dortch had been troubled with a serious kidney complaint, which finally, coupled with old age, took him across the dark river. The funeral services were conducted last Friday afternoon at the A. M. E. Church, of which the deceased was a faithful member, by Rev. Gordon, and the remains were interred in Forest Home Cemetery. Of quite a large family, but two children are living, a son, now a middle aged man who lives in Lincoln, Neb., and a daughter, Mrs. J. H. Mosley, of this city. His wife died before the war.

Mr. Dortch was a slave, and the best years of his life were spent in servitude. However, he was not particularly mistreated, and in fact had quite an easy time compared to the most of those who have been slaves. His master is at the present time a resident of Chicago, and on one occasion, Mr. Dortch had an enjoyable visit with him. While he was a slave, yet in his case he was practically a hired man, because he had made an arrangement with his master to let him do as he pleased in return for Mr. Dortch paying him the sum of $35 a month. Mr. Dortch worked on a boat, leaving the plantation early in the week and returning the latter part, doing much as he pleased in the meantime. He paid his master the $35 a month and had some besides for himself.

("The Mount Pleasant Journal", Thursday, November 19, 1896, page 2)

NOTE: Resource provided by Henry County Heritage Trust; transcription done by Hayley A. Hopper, University of Northern Iowa Public History Field Experience Class, Spring 2022.

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