Josephine Lott

May 13, 1908 - October 19, 2004
Role: Ranch Employee, Cowhand Family
Maiden name: Heard

Josephine grew up in Refugio and went to school in Corpus Christi. Both her grandparents, Tom and Agnes Heard, were brought from Louisiana as slaves. Tom was a cowhand on the O'Connor Melon Creek Ranch. Josephine worked for Kathryn Stoner O’Connor in the 1930s on the Melon Creek Ranch. Josephine was deeply religious, considered herself a missionary, and had an expansive knowledge of the old black spirituals. She even composed spirituals and loved to sing the “Old 100s”. Not surprisingly she married Clarence Lott a man who had a reputation for such a clear voice that he could be heard easily over his farming tractor. She remembers well the high spirit of the church in Lewis' Bend, the singing, the Testify meetings in the afternoon, getting happy, and the real fellowship the community found through the church. Josephine projected a strong, clear presence.

Introduction to Josephine Lott

Louise S. O'Connor
Voice of Josephine Lott
Louise: What do these church songs mean to you.

Josephine: Mean to me? Salvation. That I met Jesus one day. One Tuesday evening I met Jesus. I was down in Corpus Christi and I met Jesus and the preacher was singing

in them days I want another witness by my lord
I want another witness of my Lord
The soul is a witness of my Lord
The soul is a witness of my Lord
The soul is a witness of my Lord
The soul is a witness of my Lord
Old saint John was a mighty man
Seven stars at his right hand
Heaven and earth are going to pass away
And we need another witness of my Lord
We need another witness of my Lord
Come on and be a witness of my Lord
Come on and be a witness of my Lord

But I tell ya i've been filled, that's what it does to me. See it fills me up. Because I am one of God's children, you know he said I am the true vine, and I knew the husband man and my husband and I when we first married, see we organized the family altar and we had prayer and it was out in the country and so we pray. There wasn't anything to listen at but the bird out there the birds and the bees be humming you know. we would pray, My husband and I. And sometime when he go to work, he was a farmer and I would hear him way down on the ranch and as he would be sitting there makin' a turn, on the turn row. This time of year they'd be, you know, planting corn, I would hear him singing and praying and when I hear him singing and praying I'd run in the house and get my Bible and whatever is good for him then on the cornrow you know well it's good for me. And so that's how we started, you know, our family. And that's how it makes me feel.