A 104-year-old Black Grandma has become a viral sensation after her granddaughter began sharing videos of the elder talking about her past – including the time she spent working from 3 a.m. to 5 p.m. in cotton fields for little to no money.
Madie Scott first entered the public eye when her granddaughter, Shanika Bradshaw, shared a video on TikTok in November in which Scott discussed her life. Despite all the hardship she experienced, Scott still had a joyful spirit and gave thanks to God.
“I worked like a dog … I lay up and think about what God done bought me through,” Scott told Bradshaw. “All the work I done, you know Jesus has been good to me.”
In a more recent video Bradshaw shared on Twitter Friday, Dec. 10, Scott said the white farm owners she worked for would provide them with water and snacks and when it was time to get paid, they would tell the Black workers they owed them money instead.
“You owed him all of it, you broke even,” Scott said in response to some of her granddaughter’s questions.
“Oh you done broke even ‘cuz y’all done got the food and stuff from his commissary?” Bradshaw asked to clarify she understood Scott. “Yeah, that’s right. That’s what they done,” Scott exclaimed in response.
“Oh, so basically you working for free,” Bradshaw continued, to which Scott said, “Yeah.”
In a separate video, Bradshaw asker her grandma if she thought she should be paid for her work.
“Yeah! All the hard work I done put in. … and ain’t get no money for it … I need to be paid,” Scott said “All that work I done, didn’t get no money for 50 cents. I babysit for 50 cents and all this money I done worked for and ain’t get nothing.”
Social media users have fallen in love with Scott and pay homage to her for being walking history.
“The guilty ones always say ‘But all that stuff happened long ago, the world should move on,’” Twitter user @johnOkillens responded. “Ms Madie remembers as if it just happened last week.The scars of injustice linger for a lifetime,& those who profited from them don’t get to say when they have healed. #ReparationsNow”.
“This is so important. We MUST make sure to capture these testimonies on film,” @beniimocihi tweeted. “Thank you so much for blessing us with your grandmother’s presence. (Also she is adorable, oh my goodness.)”
“It’s awful, but it’s history, and I’m glad she’s alive to tell it. People need to hear it,” @HotFiyaStarter tweeted.
“This is why I believe in reparations. Slavery didn’t end in 1863. It continued under another name (share cropping and imprisonment) up until the 1950s and was ENFORCED by state and federal governments through the Black codes and Jim Crow. My parents were alive during Jim Crow,” @BougiBlackGirl chimed in.
Bradshaw told BuzzFeed she began sharing videos of her grandma because she thought it was important for people to know accurate history from someone who experienced it firsthand.
“We hear about Christopher Columbus, but we don’t really hear too much of Black history. So I feel it’s important for me to put this out there so people can hear it firsthand,” Bradshaw added. “This is what happened, these people — not just my grandmother — but other people who built up America and were never acknowledged for it.”
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