sked how and why she came to the University of Kentucky, Fay Yarbrough doesn't hesitate."Bill Freehling is to blame for it," she says with an ironic smile.
She relied heavily on Works Progress Administration narratives from the 1930s, the result of interviews of former slaves.
"When most people hear about WPA work, they think strictly about the public highways, schools and parks built by people who were out of work. So the government, realizing that the ex-slaves were getting pretty old, had these authors talk to them and ask them about their lives under slavery," Yarbrough explains, adding, "Lucky for ushow would any of these experiences been preserved otherwise?
For a paper she needed to write in one of her other classes, Yarbrough settled on the topic of interracial sex from the perspective of slaves, and the research and writing that followed put Yarbrough on an unexpectedly new academic path.
"How did the bi-racial sons and daughters of slaves feel?
They kept getting pushed further west, and treaty obligations with the U. What many people don't realize now, Yarbrough says, is that the Cherokee Nation was a sovereign nation.