ChickenBones: A Journal

for  Literary & Artistic African-American  Themes



 Harrison says her father, Henry Jacob, was a Creek freedman who owned a farm and operated

a ferry north of Muskogee near the little town of Clarksville. . . . She says her father

used the ferry to carry horses, buggies, wagons, and people across the Arkansas River.



Harrison to celebrate 100th Birthday

By Mile Staniford, Managing Editor

The Oklahoma Eagle

Thursday November 3, 1988


Emma Rentie Harrison will celebrate her 100th birthday on Nov. 4, complete with a proclamation from mayor Rodger Randle declaring Friday “Emma Rentie Harrison Day” in Tulsa. According to employees at Chamor Nursing Center, where Harrison lives, State Senator Maxine Horner will be present at the birthday party to give the centenarian a citation.

Harrison, who looks remarkably well for her age, is shy about letting anyone know about her approaching birthday, and she has her doubts about having the event put into print. She jokingly says, ” When everyone finds out how old I am, I’ll never get another husband.”

“I don’t remember myself, but they tell me I was born Nov. 4, 1888, in Indian Territory,” Harrison begins the account of her life.

Harrison says her father, Henry Jacob, was a Creek freedman who owned a farm and operated a ferry north of Muskogee near the little town of Clarksville, which is no longer listed on the official state transportation department’s map. She says her father used the ferry to carry horses, buggies, wagons, and people across the Arkansas River. Harrison’s mother was Rebecca Jacob. In addition to raising Emma and her brothers and sisters, Rebecca helped her husband farm the 160 acres they owned on the north side of the river. Emma says they raised corn, cotton, hogs, chicken, ducks, geese, and “everything like that.”

For entertainment, Emma says she used to play baseball with her brothers. On Sunday, the whole family used to attend the Blue Creek Baptist Church where Emma’s father was a deacon and her uncle, Eli Jacob, was the pastor.

Harrison remembers, “I was a home girl. they were strict on me. I came up the old way. I never got into much trouble. . . I helped mother with my twin brothers. . . . I’m no ‘goodtime’ woman. I get tired of foolishness.”

Harrison says when she was young she had to have a chaperone accompany her on dates. She attended school at Jangston university.

While still in her teens, Emma Jacob married James Rentie, who owned a farm west of Tullahassee. According to Harrison, she and her new husband made their home for a short while in Muskogee. Mr. Rentie taught school at the Tullahassee mission. She says her husband was a deacon.

She says her first husband “passed away quite awhile ago.”—she couldn’t remember the exact date. Emma Harrison is the last living member of her immediate family. her brothers and sisters have all passed away.

According to Harrison’s—legal guardian, her cousin Gaza Newby, Harrison never had any children of her own, but many nieces and nephews, and other relatives fondly call her “Aunt Emma.” Newby says in her later life, Emma Rentie married Manuel Harrison. This marriage lasted only a short time, ending in Mr. Harrison’s death.

Mrs. Harrison has lived at Chamor for eight and one-half years. She says, “This here is my home.”

Chamor employees report Harrison dresses herself every morning and, though she can still walk, she spends much of her time in a wheelchair at the door of her room visiting with other residents.

Chamor Social Service Director Pamela beard says all the residents and the staff are looking forward to the big celebration because “Emma is one of our favorite people.”

*   *   *   *   *’s 25 Best Selling Books



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#10 – Covenant: A Thriller  by Brandon Massey

#11 – Diary Of A Street Diva  by Ashley and JaQuavis

#12 – Don’t Ever Tell  by Brandon Massey

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#16 – The Future Has a Past: Stories by J. California Cooper

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#23 – Thugs And The Women Who Love Them by Wahida Clark

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Super Rich: A Guide to Having it All

By Russell Simmons

Russell Simmons knows firsthand that wealth is rooted in much more than the stock  market. True wealth has more to do with what’s in your heart than what’s in your wallet. Using this knowledge, Simmons became one of America’s shrewdest entrepreneurs, achieving a level of success that most investors only dream about. No matter how much material gain he accumulated, he never stopped lending a hand to those less fortunate. In Super Rich, Simmons uses his rare blend of spiritual savvy and street-smart wisdom to offer a new definition of wealth-and share timeless principles for developing an unshakable sense of self that can weather any financial storm. As Simmons says, “Happy can make you money, but money can’t make you happy.”

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The New Jim Crow

Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness

By Michele Alexander

Contrary to the rosy picture of race embodied in Barack Obama’s political success and Oprah Winfrey’s financial success, legal scholar Alexander argues vigorously and persuasively that [w]e have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it. Jim Crow and legal racial segregation has been replaced by mass incarceration as a system of social control (More African Americans are under correctional control today… than were enslaved in 1850). Alexander reviews American racial history from the colonies to the Clinton administration, delineating its transformation into the war on drugs. She offers an acute analysis of the effect of this mass incarceration upon former inmates who will be discriminated against, legally, for the rest of their lives, denied employment, housing, education, and public benefits. Most provocatively, she reveals how both the move toward colorblindness and affirmative action may blur our vision of injustice: most Americans know and don’t know the truth about mass incarceration—but her carefully researched, deeply engaging, and thoroughly readable book should change that.—Publishers Weekly

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The White Masters of the World

From The World and Africa, 1965

By W. E. B. Du Bois

W. E. B. Du Bois’ Arraignment and Indictment of White Civilization (Fletcher)

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Ancient African Nations

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The Death of Emmett Till by Bob Dylan  The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll  Only a Pawn in Their Game

Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson Thanks America for Slavery /

George Jackson  / Hurricane Carter

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The Journal of Negro History issues at Project Gutenberg

The Haitian Declaration of Independence 1804  / January 1, 1804 — The Founding of Haiti 

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update 15 December 2011




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