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GOIN UP YONDER, SUNRISES AND SUNSETS OF THE FAMILY, MRS. ONETHA BULLOCK-HUTCHINSON, TRESSIE B. BULLOCK, RICHARD LEE BLUEFORD

“Goin Up Yonder”

Anybody asked you… If anybody asks you where I’m going …Where I’m going…Where I’m going soon…

If you wanna know…I beg you wanna know…Where I’m going, someday soon…

[Chorus:] I’m going up yonder… going up yonder…I’m going up yonder… going up yonder… Going up yonder to be with my Lord.

I can take the pain, yes I can… The heartaches that it brings, it’s gonna hurt …The comforts in knowing I’ll soon be gone…

Soon then there is God gives me grace …To run this Christian race, ‘Til I see my Savior, I see him face to face…

[Chorus:] I’m going up yonder… going up yonder… I’m going up yonder… going up yonder… I’m going up yonder to be with my Lord…

Then I’m going up yonder… I’m going up yonder… Yeah, I’m going up yonder to be with my Lord.

“Goin Up Yonder” is one of the most remarkable, joyous and moving Black Gospel Hymns from the days of American Human Bondage. Its hidden and secular coded meaning was that a bondsman was going to try to make the long, extremely dangerous and perilous escape “up yonder” to the Land of Freedom, the North and Canada.

Now, the sacred Black Gospel Hymn has come to primarily represent the most infinite Freedom from worldly bondage, the sunset of our lives and the path “Up Yonder to be with Our Lord.”

QUEEN MOTHER: A WOMAN CALLED NETH, THE BEDROCK AND HISTORIAN OF THE FAMILY

SUNSET: July 13, 1923                                                                                  SUNSET: May 6, 2011

If ever there was a bedrock, tower of strength and matriarch of a family, it was Mrs. Onetha Bullock-Hutchinson. She was my father’s younger sister. In naming their daughter, John and Ida Bullock, went beyond customarily family names for females, such as Angeline, Hallie, Nora, Rebecca, etc. It is not a name commonly associated with names found around the place of her roots, Marion, Pike or Walthall County, Mississippi.

The name, Onetha, may be derived from the Iroquois Nation, Oneida means literally, The People of the Stone. I wasn’t aware of the possible origin of her name when I referred to her as the “Bedrock of the Family.”

Neth (Neat) as we commonly called her is also similar to the name, Neith. In Kemetic (Egypt) mythology, Neith (also known as Nit, Net, and Neit) was one of the earliest and most important and powerful “All Mother” creation goddesses of Kemet. She was also one of its earliest war goddesses symbolized with a bow and crossed arrows.

In both instances, she was named fittingly as a rock of the family and a fearless and courageous “Protective” Queen Mother. The strength of her intelligence, courage, character and will is legendary. In the 1930s, a notorious character in the county called Pink which may have been Pink William Conerly, Jr. (br. Nov. 4, 1877) made his intentions much too plain in regards to my grandfather’s wife, Ida. Papa (John Bullock) became enraged and grabbed his shotgun to make heaven come a little early for Pink.

It was Neth as little girl that wrestled with Papa for the shotgun that saved Pink’s life and Papa a possible prison sentence for murder. It was after that incident that Papa loaded up his wagon and moved out of Pike-Walthall County once and for all. Papa moved the family first to Jefferson Parrish, Louisiana among the Limpkins and Willheightsthat Papa said were related. Subsequently, they settled in Morehouse Parrish among the Hutchinson and Blueford Families. That’s how and why Papa, Ida and family resettled in Louisiana.

In Louisiana, there was another explosive situation involving Neth. White people in Louisiana were quite a bit more violent and mean spirited against Blacks than in Marion-Pike-Walthall Counties, Mississippi. One day, the white farmer that the Bullocks, Hutchinson and Blueford Families were sharecropping with made his appearance at their settlement with his gun to drive off, I believe, my grandfather Luke Blueford from the farm for no more than insolence.

As a beautiful and young lady, Neth met the white man on the road outside of the house. He made his intentions known and Neth forcible blocked him from getting out of his vehicle and wrestled the gun from him. Morehouse Parrish was a dangerous place for Black people. It had been one of the most violent and ugliest areas of the country for extreme racial violence. They had active white citizens’ councils and widespread Klan and Bulldozer activity. There were many lynchings in the Parrish. I asked Neth what happened. She kind of grinned in her special sly way and said “nuthing.”

Neth was also a bedrock of strength for my mother, Lela Bell Blueford-Bullock. My mother was not only Neth’s sister in law, but an aunt in law from marriage to my mother’s late uncle, Leo Hutchinson. I didn’t know it, but my mother consistently sought Neth’s wisdom in understanding me.

My mother often called me another, Jake Bullock, which more often than not perplexed her. It was a great honor to be an uncle “Jake (J.T.) Bullock.” I didn’t know anything about my great grandfather Notorious Jake, but I must have also inherited his bold “wandering spirit” in a different kind of way.

Neth was also our family historian. Neth provided me with most all of the family genealogy and background through spoken folklore, pictures and family facts. This website is a testament and body of Onetha’swork. It was her love of the family and infinite wisdom that inspired her to preserve our family history for future generations. I just went one step beyond the work of the Great Neth. My hope is that others will take this work to yet another level.

I, among many, loved Queen Mother,  Mrs. Onetha Bullock-Hutchinson,and will miss her all the Days of my Life.

TRESSIE B. OUR DISTANCE AND LOVING COUSIN

SUNRISE: September 12, 1942                                                                 SUNRISE: January  8, 2012

Tressie B. Bullock was a distant cousin from Pike-Marion County, Mississippi. I didn’t meet Tressie until later in our lives. We grew up in particularly the same area of West Oakland and I didn’t even know her. I often travelled within feet of her home in Campbell Village on 8th and Campbell on the way to my uncle’s (Harmon Blueford) home.

Tressie and her family were essential in making the 1996 Bullock-Hutchinson-Blueford Family Reunion at the Alameda Regional Beach a big success. After the reunion, I lost touch with Tressie, Nancy and Ollie.

Tressie was a member of Love Center Church of Oakland along with my sister, Erma (Clemon Teen) Bullock-Sokoya. I never got the opportunity to meet her mother, Mrs. Alberta Abram. Tressie’s father was F.L. Bullock.

F.L. Bullock (br. 1922) was the son of Walter (br. 1895) and Bessie (br. 1900) Bullock of Walthall County, Mississippi. Walter’s father and mother was Sam Bullock (br. 1872) and Emma Stewart (br.1876) married on December 24, 1893. At this time, I can’t confirm that Sam was part of Bullock-Youngblood Clan, but he fit the profile of one of the family. He was named Sam. Sam is a common name found often and throughout the family. Second, both of his parents were born in Mississippi and in 1910, he and his family was found residing in Beat 4, Marion County near Hugh Bullock’s son, Jesse Leonard, along with other Bullock-Youngblood Family members. Sam and Emma were also residing doors away from the white Pigott Family. The Bullock Cemetery where Hugh and Family are buried is on Pigott Family property.

Many had a lot to good to say about Tressie B. During the planning of our family reunion, I got a chance to speak often with Tressie and visited her. Faith so happened that Tressie B. lived only doors from my aunt, Mrs. Thelma Bullock-Wiggans. They had often wandered if they were related. Tressie B was a naturally warm and beautiful young lady that never failed to give her everything in a quiet, humble and charming way. I wished that I had taken the time to share more with her and family. She will be greatly missed but never forgotten among us.

From family spoken folklore, Tressie B’s  Great father’s family, Sam Bullock, and the Bullock-Youngblood branches of Marion-Pike-Walthall Counties were very close and related. Are we related? BY THE GRACE OF GOD!

RICHARD LEE BLUEFORD, THE APPLE OF A MOTHER’S EYE

SUNRISE: September 17, 1957                                                             SUNSET: January 19, 2012

We mourn the recent lost of my 1st Cousin Ricky “Coon” Blueford. Ricky was the son of my mother’s brother, Edward Blueford and the late Earline Brock-Blueford. My mother and Earline had been so close to each other. Edward is the son of the late Luke Blueford and Jerlene (Jacklins) Hutchinson-Blueford. Earline is the natural sister of infamous Baseball Hall of Famer, Lou Brock.

Earline and Lou were raised in Collinston, Louisiana with a large family of nine along with the Bullock, Hutchinson and Blueford Families. They were raised primarily by their mother Paralee Brock.

Ricky’s uncle, Lou Brock, spent the majority of his career as the left fielder for the St. Louis Cardinals. Brock was best known for breaking Ty Cobb’s all-time major league stolen base record. He is currently a special instructor coach for the 2011 World Series Champion St. Louis Cardinals. Brock was inducted into the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1985.

Luke (br. 1904 or 1898) was the son of Harmon Blueford (br. 1860) of Alabama. My grandfather’s mother appears to have been Nancy Blueford (br. August 1876) of Arkansas. My grandmother, Jerlene (br. 1902), was the daughter of Jack Hutchinson (br. June 1868) and Belle Winfield-Hutchinson(br. March 1875) of Morehouse Parish, Louisiana.

Ricky grew up in Brookfield Village in East Oakland where the Bluefords were a large well known and respected family. Your pass through Brookfield was always to be part of the Blueford Family. My late brother Peaches (Anthony Bullock) said that when he entered Castlemont High School in East Oakland as a freshman that all he had to say was that he was a “Blueford” and he had instant juice all over the school.

We always spoke of the Bluefords of Brookfield Village with Love and Great Pride. I remember Little Ricky always lovingly in fun and play. I remember Little Ricky playing and wrestling with my nephews and nieces. I can still remember Earline with a big smile on her face calling out Ricky’s name in jest with a lot of love, affection and attention. He had been the apple of her eye and the center of attention and affection of the Edward-Earline Blueford Family and Brookfield Village. Ricky was loved by many and he loved many. His sudden death is still mourned and he will be dearly missed for all the days of our lives.

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