Plantation Games: How Slave Children Used Their Creativity to Entertain Themselves

5 Posted by - February 8, 2022 - LATEST POSTS

There were several games that children of the plantation played even in the midst of oppression. The children had to play with things found in nature or in the slave quarters rather than expensive dolls or board games.

They played games like Hide the Switch. A child would hide a branch and the first child that found it would smack the others with it and hide it for the next child. Another game was Bob A Needle. Children would sit in a circle and pass a needle or a needle case behind their backs while singing. Whoever held the needle by the end of the song was “it.”

Other plantation games were Haley Over or Anti-Over, a game in which children divided into two groups and stood on each side of a building. It was, in a way, like volleyball, with the building serving as a net. One child tossed a ball over the building and the children in the other group tried to catch it. Whoever caught it ran around to the other side and threw it to try to hit one of the kids from the first group with the ball, like the present game Dodge Ball.  If you got hit with the ball, you were “out.”

Black children in the fields also played clapping games like Miss Mary Mack, which lasted through generations of children on the playground. Children also engaged in role-play games where they would re-enact scenes from a funeral, slave auctions, family gatherings and baptisms. Some of these games would involve the children of the slave owners.

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  • Curtis Summons December 27, 2016 - 5:56 am

    Pure and fun games played from our black and beautiful natural selves in our own black and beautiful specially perfect way.

  • chicken butt May 22, 2018 - 10:16 am

    i love plantation owners THE SOUTH WILL RISE AGAIN!!!!!!!!!

    • Chilehead April 11, 2019 - 9:12 pm

      No, you’re not a chicken butt. A butt, yes. But think of something WAY larger.

  • Nikki April 13, 2019 - 9:16 pm

    I recently read Uncle Tom’s cabin. Really hurt me, for them. Awful stuff . I agree with Chile head btw

  • Butt wheat April 13, 2019 - 10:39 pm

    Dont tell black childrens this they might get offended.

  • IEATCHICKENS April 14, 2019 - 9:40 am

    Child, The South has Risen as high as it will ever be. Right now their even taking down statues of “The War of Northern Aggression”. When your sixteen in a few years maybe you’ll see what a COW’s ass you are. PS I doubt you even know any “plantation owners”

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