stage. The reason some convicts liked to perform, that gave them a chance to get outside the prison a few times. The show traveled to the other Alabama prisons, and to the women's prison at Wetumpka. But these guys never tried to escape.
They had a prison band and we listened to that sometimes. Once a week you could see a movie. The prisoners liked pictures about Jesse James, they sure applauded him. They liked Tim McCoy too. Some of the devils, they always picked the bad guys in the films and cheered for them.
In the summer they had a baseball team at Kilby. They played at Crampton Bowl in Montgomery, and they got to Birmingham. The players, they had a chance to run but they never did. Some of the guys paid to get on that team. I could have paid fifty bucks but the prison heads wouldn't let me play ball. I'd have hit a homer, sure.
ALL through 1946 and 1947 I was operating one of the biggest stores in Kilby. I had as large a stock in my cell as the storekeeper had at the commissary. A boy worked for me, a kind of helper who went from one floor to another selling my stock. Some nights I took in twenty-four or twenty-five dollars. I would buy the food at the commissary and from the trusties. Some things were brought in to me from Montgomery. I had a bottom-floor cell where I kept the stuff. While I went from one floor to another with one helper, another stayed in the cell and clerked there. Sometimes my profit ran as high as thirty-five or forty dollars a week. I had had a certain amount of business ever since I was brought back to Kilby, but now it was big. When I got back I put an ad in the Chicago Defender for some help. Some people sent me twelve dollars. I started to make money lending that out. I went into a steady business with the profits from then on. I had run stores in Atmore but business was slow there. There was no money at Atmore. You were