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Fred Page Fred Page was born on a 3000-acre farm in Louisiana He lived there for most of his teenage years He then moved to Mississippi where he has lived for 52 years Overall Mr Page has had a very long and interesting life In Louisiana Freds family was one of the most well off black families of its time He lived in a great big house and his father worked for many rich people They raised hogs and cows which was rare for some plantations When Fred was 12 years old he was hired to pick cotton He could pick about a couple hundred pounds of cotton by two oclock During the picking he would hardly see a white person unless the overseer was white When he moved to Mississippi he began working at the Melrose Plantation at the age of 18 His owner Mrs Kelly was very high cultured She taught him the rich culture ways like they would use in New York so he would know how the white people would talk to him Fred was very sophisticated for a young black teenage When he started working in the State of Mississippi he wasnt quite used to the way a black person was supposed to speak Everyone you talked to is yas em and no em and yas em giving that high honor you know And I started saying yes and no but I soon got out of that In a couple of weeks I blended back down to Yas and nosm that sort of thing This is very similar to the character Grant in A Lesson Before Dying Grant was smarter than most of the white people he knew but sometimes had to act more dumb to give them pleasure or acted smarter to piss them off He began only giving tours to blacks and everyone gave Freds tours high reviews When he started giving tours to whites
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