Lester B. Diggs, who has lived in Courtland his whole life, attended Alabama State University and worked for Reynolds Metals Company. Through his mother, Minnie Lee Young Diggs, he is descended from Reuben and Susan Scott, enslaved foreman and domestic servant, brought to northern Alabama by Jefferson's great-grandson William Stuart Bankhead in 1846.
Diggs grew up on a farm owned by the Hotchkiss family, who are Bankhead descendants, and he describes cotton cultivation in his interview. He also recalls meeting Martin Luther King in 1956 in Montgomery, shortly after King’s house was fire-bombed.
1996 Nov. 11, Courtland, AL Interviewees: Lester B. Diggs, Johnny James Young
"Ain't like it is now"
Johnny James Young and Lester Diggs describe the process of growing and harvesting cotton in their childhood and today.