Old Het

Display Name: 
Old Het
Sort Name: 
Het
Race: 
Black
Gender: 
Female
Class: 
Free Black
Rank: 
Major
Vitality: 
Alive
Date of Birth: 
Sunday, January 1, 1860 to Thursday, December 31, 1868
Other Texts: 
Biography: 

Het's history remains an enigma. No one in the town knows how old she is:"She was about seventy probably, though by her own counting . . . she would have to be around a hundred" (249). Het lives in the poorhouse and her "long rat-colored cloak trimmed with what forty or fifty years ago had been fur" (249) reveals her impoverishment. She makes regular visits to the kitchens in Jefferson to receive food. In "Mule in the Yard" Het is Mannie Hait's confidant who helps the latter to communicate with I.O. Snopes. When Faulkner retells the story in Chapter 16 of the novel The Town, he reveals that Het received her purple toque from Mrs. Compson "fifty years ago while General Compson himself was still alive."

Note: 
The information about the toque can help to date the plot of this short story.
Individual or Group: 
Individual
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Character