J. Y. Lott


January 12, 1913 - January 4, 1998
Role: Cowhand
Nicknames: J.Y., Fry, Slim
Known for: Stories and Lies

J.Y. was born in Lewis' Bend, the freedman community on the banks of the San‘tone River. He grew up on the Power Ranch and his lineage is threaded with cowhands on all sides. His maternal grandmother, Francis, was a Youngblood who married Isaiah Weathers, a renowned preacher and the grandfather of many of the cowhands. Francis' brother was Uncle Charlie Lewis, one of the well-known older ranch hands who served as mentors. Francis and Charlie have different surnames because each kept the name of their respective slave masters after Emancipation. JY’s paternal grandparents were Stephanie Lott and Mary Rodgers Lott. Mary Rodgers was the sister of Tom "Ball" Rodgers, a tophand and cook of considerable reputation in the Coastal Bend. J.Y. started riding when he was nine years old. The first time he got on a horse, Henry Lewis said “I’ll help you,” and Mr. James [Welder] said “No, if you help that boy, I’ll fire you”. When J.Y. was coming up you learned the hard way and looking back he’s very appreciative of how he was taught. JY was an all around fun-loving guy with a big sense of humor and a great dancer. Unless you knew him, there is no way to describe him. Any attempt to do so would be sorely lacking for those who had the misfortune not to know him. As with almost all the cowhands, J.Y. loved to be on a horse, “Give me a horse and a saddle and I’ll go back to the San’tone River and ride.” He was funny, crazy and occupied his own cosmos, and out of that parallel universe could come some serious truth.

Introduction to J. Y. Lott

Louise S. O'Connor
00:01:44
Voice for J. Y. Lott
00:02:27
J.Y. Lott - I tell you what, I'm going sing the song ? right now. Papa sang this song days gone. We be ridin' along on the horse going to the West Ranch.

How bout that shortnin' shortning
How bout that shortnin' bread

Two little niggers laying in the bed
They cracked open like shortnin' bread

How bout that shortnin' shortnin'
How bout that shortnin' bread

Tony Lott - How bout shortnin' shortnin'
How bout that shortnin'

Two little niggers laying in the loft
They cracked open like shortnin' bread
Sent for the doctor and the doctor said
?

How bout shortnin' shortnin'
how bout that shortnin' bread
How bout shortnin' shortnin'
how bout that shortnin' bread

Shortnin' bread taste good
Daisy ain't dead yet

I'll tell you what it's like trying to find a girl
? about a girl

I got a girl she's cute ?
She's working right over in the white folk's yard
She bring me sugar she bring me lard
All that comes from the white folk's yard
Every evening about half past six
She meets me standing in the white folks gate
?
? white folk's hand
?
sho looks hot
?
? bitter and sweet
? bite to eat
gonna pay no attention to who we meet
?

Miss Angelina, I sure love you I sure love you
There is no other woman so good as you, so good as you
Angelina who black baby are you
She's a daisy, running crazy
Down by the river side
Far as you ?
For as you I die
Angelina who's black baby are you

Documents

“Give me a horse and a saddle and I ’ll go back to the San’tone River and ride. I love that.”

Cryin' For Daylight: Ranching Culture in the Texas Coastal Bend