Why would mama be bothered that there are no black people in Michigan
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Before Mama was married, Hambone tried to coerce her to stay in Alabama and marry him, rather than marrying her husband. He made up all kinds of storied, and in context, alluded to the fact that the resident were all Chinese..... feasting upon whales and seals. He thought he could make Mama uncomfortable..... that she wouldn't want to be the only black couple, and thus, she would stay and marry him.