Nacogdoches family reunion honors lives of slave ancestors

NACOGDOCHES COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - Eight generations of Caddell'sgathered in Nacogdoches to reunite as a family and remember Anthony and HelenCaddell. Whose humble beginnings paved the way for the family today.

"Our family ancestry started herein East Texas, our great, great, great, great- grandmother was a slave on theDevereux plantation," said Henry Hammons, Caddell Family Reunion.

"It was a fairly good situationat that particular plantation not a lot of harshness," said Jeri Mills,Coordinator, Caddell Family Reunion

Helen grew up and worked on aplantation just outside of Mt. Enterprise,

When she was freed, she marriedAnthony in 1869, and they raised nine children in Rusk County.

"Nine different family sets arehere today under Anthony and Helen," said Mills.

A heritage table displayed pieces ofthe family's life, with quilts and aprons from lifetimes ago.

Caddell family artifacts are alsoincluded in the Stone Fort Museum at SFA.

"Its really exciting to know thatour family history is being preserved and being recognized even by theuniversity," said Hammons.

Henry Hammons says seeing familycompletes the experience and adding a layer of history gives them the chance toglimpse into the past and create a better future.

"We made a lot of progress and alot of times younger people especially don't realize the suffering that hasgone in to the making of that progress," said Hammons.

The family hopes the tradition ofcoming together will help future generations remember sacrifices of the past.

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