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Mother's Gold Knife and Fork
Collection Title: Leonard Roberts Folktale Collection
Source: Berea College Southern Appalachian Archives. Berea Archives Number: LR-013-A-08
Once upon a time there's a man and he had a girl and her mother was dead and he
married again and this woman he married had a two girls ― two more girls. So they didn't
like this girl. They made her stay in the home everywhere they went ― wouldn't let them
go ― wouldn't let her go with them nowhere. So she ― when they was going off and she
wanted to go with them. And uh ― Well ole ― they started and she followed them. They ―
saw her coming. They catched her and put her in a holler tree. She had a little verse she
says, says, "My mother's gold knife and fork." And she got out.
Well they was started on and she kept following them. And they caught her again and put
her in a brush pile and set it on fire. So she says, "My mother's gold knife and fork" and
she got out of that. Sothey went on and come to a house to stay all night. Well they got
up and they went upstairs. And they had ― they's three girls that lived there. They put
red caps on the girls that lived there on their heads and white ones on the girls that just,
just came there. And uh, put them in different beds.
So they went to bed and well in the night this girl that they didn't want to follow them heard
the old man whetting a butcher knife. And uh ― he uh was whetting his butcher knife.
So she got up and took the caps off their head and put them on these other girls' head
and put the ones they had on their heads back on their'n.
So ― Well this old woman that lived there said, "Old man," says, "you go up now says the
ones that has on the white caps says you kill them." He said, " Well." So he went up and
he killed the ones that had on the white caps. Come back down said, "Well did you kill
'em?" Said, "Yeah." Said, "I killed them." While she ― while he was gone back
downstairs why these three girls got quilts and blankets and tied them together and went
out the winder and got away.
Well the old woman come upstairs and she seen that ― that he'd killed their two ― their
three girls. Well says, "You killed our two ― our three girls." He says, "Lord I reckon not."
Said, "I killed the ones that had the white caps on." So this old woman she got mad, and
she had this old man in the fire and burnt him up. Well she uh ― she cut her own head
off ― she got where she could cut her own head off and I reckon that's the end of it.
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