Jordan Anderson was a slave until the Civil War, when Union Soldiers freed him. He took his family to Dayton, where they settled and he obtained work as a servant, janitor, coachman, etc. until 1894 when he became a sexton at a church.
In July of 1865, Colonel P.H. Anderson, his former owner, wrote Jordan a letter asking him to return to his plantation and help him bring in the crops after the war. Through his employer, Valentine Winters, Jordan responded with the following letter, sent to the Cincinnati Commercial and subsequently published.