Aunt Cindy (Aunt Lucinda)

Aunt Cindy

Real-life model for the characters in Annie Fellows Johnston's "Little Colonel" series

While looking for clues to the identity for African American characters from the little Colonel series, we ran across this photograph by Kate Matthews entitled "Aunt Lucinda" We think this may be "Aunt Cindy"

From The Little Colonel's Holidays, Chapter II:

"Fat old Aunt Cindy, waddling into the pantry to flour-bin or sugar-barrel, glanced at them occasionally through the open window to see that they were in no mischief, and then went calmly on with her baking. She knew that they were not like white children who need a nurse to watch every step. They had taken care of themselves and each other from the time that they had learned to crawl.

In Aunt Cindy's slow journeys around the kitchen, she stopped from time to time to open the oven door and peep in. Finally she flung it wide open, and, with a satisfied grunt, took out a big square pan. A warm delicious odour filled the kitchen, and floated out around the house to the group on the porch."

From Little Colonel Maid of Honor, Chapter XIV:

"Sylvia asked me to carry these, "she explained to Miles Bradford," and to weah a white dress and this hat with the red roses on it. Because I was maid of honah at Eugenia's wedding she seems to think I can reflect some sawt of glory on hers. She said she wanted all her young ladies to weah white."

"Who are her young ladies, and why? "he asked.

"Allison, Kitty, Betty, and I. You see, Sylvia's grandfathah was the MacIntyre's coachman befoah the wah, and her mothah is our old Aunt Cindy. She considahs that she belongs to us and we belong to her."

photo: Kate Matthews Collection, Photographic Archives, Ekstrom Library, University of Louisville

Mary Ware's Promised Land, Part 2, Chapter 1

There they stood, the three who had filled her life so full, who had taken the place of father and mother and indulgent grandfather in her life. She smiled bravely as she gave them a parting wave of her hand. She could not let tears dim her last sight of those dear faces. Another wave for Mom Beck and Alec, Walker and old Aunt Cindy, who stood behind them calling their blessings and good wishes after her. Then she went on with the others.