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As I discussed the trip described in this post with Curtis, he mused aloud about one of the things he noticed in my description.

Wonder why so many little churches with cemeteries behind them?

I think there were probably multiple reasons. Minimally, two.

These were African American sharecroppers and later, tenant farmers. The only vehicles they had access to, they drove for the white landowners. You had to walk everywhere to get what you needed.

What we would call neighborhoods today were the communities of yesterday. Each one had its church and a place to bury its dead.

Availability of land had to factor in...the white landowners had a vested interest in donating loaning land for those uses. It kept the workers on-site.

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Dee Burris Blakley

May 2016

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