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1 2 3 

4 5 6 

J- ■ ; " T I' * 






Romances and Realities 













Copyright, 1894, 

(all rights reserved.) 


must g 
from i 
the pa^ 
of the 
a?id /} 

\^ this lit 

•- Grana 

Printbo by Char lbs Wells Moulton, Buffalo, N. Y. 

--f<5•^ - 


TO the millions of happy grand-children of a gener- 
ation fast leaving the stage of action, and who 
must get their knowledge of the Rebellion and its causes 
from the lips of those who saw and participated or from 
the pages of history, as we, the grand-parents, got ours 
of the Revolution from those long svtce passed away, 
and from the written records of that thrilling period, 
c3 this little volume of unique but wonderful history is 
" sincerely and most affectionately dedicated by 07ie of the 


*- Grandfathers. 









tha pa^ 

It is 
the his 
but sin 
ciable 1 

as the i 
an end 
lowed t 
Road d 

The I 
some re 
derful a 


THE years intervening since the abolition of 
American slavery leave a majority of our peo- 
people ignorant of its workings, and of matters 
connected with it, except as they are gleaned from 
tha pages of history, or from the lips of those now 
g'-own old. 

It is not the purpose of this little volume to discuss 
the history of the ''peculiar institution" in detail, 
but simply to give so much of it as will make appre- 
ciable the cause for another one equally " peculiar," 
known for the last twenty years of its existence as the 
Underground Railroad, — a name for a mode of 
operation, and not of a corporation or material object. 

During the years of its operation, secrecy was a 
cardinal, an imperative principle of its management^ 
as the following pages will make apparent. On the 
breaking out of the War of the Rebellion, thus putting 
an end to its operations, every other su])ject was swal- 
lowed up in the excitement of the great struggle, and 
subsequently in that of Reconstruction. Thus the 
Road dropped measurably out of sight, leaving but 
meager reports and archives to tell the story of its 

The promptings of a desire to leave to posterity 
some realistic record of this, one of the most won- 
derful and thrilling features of our national history, 




no parallel to which is afforded in the annals of time, 
must be the excuse for these pages. During the 
eighties, the writer, who had lived amid its excite- 
ments for years, and was more or less familiar with 
the writings of Coffin, Pettit, the Clarkes and others, 
undertook a systematic research into the matter, the 
result of which was the accumulation of a large fund 
of incident and information pertaining to the Road, 
much of which was published in the Home Magazine 
between the years 1883 and 1889, inclusive. Those 
articles, in part, carefully revised, are now placed be- 
fore the reader in this more permanent form, with 
the hope that they may receive the generous approval 
of an appreciative public. 

The Author. 
Orwell, Ohio, May 20, 1894. 



Introduction 9 

Jo Norton 19 

Lavinia 28 

A Ruse 36 

The Original "Jerry" 48 

A Cool Woman 52 

Jack Watson „ . . . 54 

Uncle Jake 85 

George Green, or Constancy Rewarded. 98 

How Sol. Jones was Left 1 24 

Edward Howard 132 

Plucky Charley 152 

Statie Lines 164 


George Gray 173 





.t ■ 

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1839, a d 

amonff s( 


ing his h 

the grea 

about se^ 

tation of 

He hac 

of a patrc 

the rough 

rascal ? " 

" Dunn 


" No, ]\: 

" Well, 
busin'iss 1 

folks, and 

" Some 

"No, n* 

" Well, 
he rudelj 


THE quiet of a njdsummer night had settled down 
over the city of Washington, when, in Aut^uat, 
1839, a dusky forni came, with stealthy tread, from 
among some buildings not far away, and cautiously 
approached the eastern entrance to the Capitol. Lay- 
ing his hand upon the cold steps in the shadow of 
the great building, Jim Jones, a colored boy of 
about seventeen, attentively listened as if in expec- 
tation of some preconcerted signal. 

He had waited but a moment thus, whon the hand 
of a patrol was laid heavily upon his shoulder and 
the rough query, " What does this mean, you black 
rascal ? " fell upon his ear. 

" Dunno, Massa," was the reply of the startled boy. 

" Don't know, you black imp? " 

" No, Massa, dunno what fo' I was hea." 

" Well, you know, you young nigger, you have no 
busiu'iss here at this hour of the night." 

" Yes, Massa, I knowed de night am for white 
folks, and I jus, cum for to see — " 

" Some d — d abolitionist who is trying to get you 

'' No, no, Miissa." 

*' Well, come along and we shall see," saying which 
he rudely hurried the boy away to a place of safe 
keeping. - ^ .. - - ■ ' 






In the early morning Jim was recognized by his 
master, who vainly tried to extort from him by ques- 
tioning the cause of his nocturnal ramble. Failing 
in this, the boy was taken to a blacksmith shop and 
his thumbs placed end to end in the jaws of a vice, 

" Now," said the master, " tell me why you were 
abroad last night." 

" I dunno," replied Jim. 

A half turn of the screw, and a groan of pain es- 
caped the boy; another turn and he writhed in 

" Now you black son of a b ch, why were you 

at the Capitol last night ? '' 

" O Lor', Massa, a white man tol' me I should 

" What did he want of you?" 


" And so you were going ? " 

"Y-e-s — Massa — I-was-fo~to-go." 


" On a railroad undah de groun'." 

" Under the ground ? " 

" Yes, Massa, so the gem 'an said. He was jus' 
comin' to open de way, when Massa da' cotched 

"Who was he?" 

" Dunno, Massa." 

Another turn of the screw, and in the agony of 
despair the boy yelled, " Durmo, dunno, Massa, 
dunno," and swooned away. 

time as foil 




After resuscitation the torture was again applied, 
but nothing farther was elicited, as the boy con- 
tinued to aver he had never heard the name of the 
man who was to lead him ; and, indeed, he had met 
him only in the dark. 

Though for years slaves had from time to time 
been stealing away from the kind attentions of their 
masters, and, indeed, very frequently of late, yet 
never before had the latter dreamed that their " chat- 
tel went by subterranean transit, and the theme be- 
came one of such absorbing interest that, when two 
months later five prominent slaves escaped from the 
city in a single night, a Washington morning paper 
heralded the matter before the world for the first 
time as follows: — 

"underground railroad! 
A Mystery Not Yet Solved V 

"The abolition incendiaries are undermining, not only 
our domestic institutions, but the very foundations of our 
Capitol. Our citizens will recollect that the boy Jim, who 
was arrested last August, while lurking about the Capi- 
tol, would disclose nothing until he was subject to torture by 
screwing his fingers in a blacksmith's vice, when he acknowi 
edged that he was to have been sent north by railroad ; was 
to have started near the place where he stood when dis- 
covered by the patrol. He refused to tell who was to aid 
him— said he did not know — and most likely he did not. 
Nothing more could be got from him until they gave the 
screw another tuin, when he said : ' The railroad goes 
under ground all the way to Boston, ' Our citizens are losing 
all their best servants. Some secret Yankee arrangement 
has been contrived by which they ' stampede ' from three to 

I * 









1: •^-"^'ll 





eight at a time, and no trace of them can be found until the; 
reach the interior of New York or the New England States 
They can not have gone by railroad, as every station is close! 
watched by a secret police, yet there is no other conveyanc 
by which a man can reach Albany in two days. That the 
have done so, is now clearly demonstrated. Colonel Hard; 
a tobacco planter residing in the District, about five mils 
from the city, lost five more slaves last Sunday evening 
They were pursued by an expert slave catcher, but no tractj 
of them was discovered. The search was abandoned thi<| 
morning, the Colonel having received a paper called tb 
Liberty Press, printed in Albany, with the following artia 
so marked as to claim his attention: 

" 'Arrived, this morning, by our fast train, three men anil 
two women. They were claimed as slaves by Colonel 
Hardy, of the District of Columbia, but became dissatisfidj 
with the Colonel's ways of bucking Harry, making loi^ 
to Nancy and other similar displays of wrtj/c'r/j/ affection, ancf 
left the old fellow's premises last Sunday evening, arriviii! 
at our station by the quickest passage on record.* 

"The article recites many incidents that have transpired! 
in the Colonel's family, that correspond so exactly with factjf 
that the Colonel says : * Nobody but Kate could have tolji 
that story ! ' Said article closes by saying : ' Now, Colonel' 
H., please give yourself no trouble about these friends c 
yours, for they will be safe under the protection of the British 
Lion before this meets your eyes.' " 

The term which had been given to poor Jim, in! 
confidence, as the means by which he was to make| 
his escape from bondage, and extorted from him bTJ 
torture, leaving thus been given to the world froinl 
the city of Washington, became henceforth the uni- 
versal appelation for a corporation which, for mortj 
than twenty years thereafter, extended its great truiiU 




ines across all the northern states from Mason and 
lixon's line and the Ohio River to the Queen's 
)ominion, and its ramifications far into the southern 
Itates. It was most efficiently officered, and had its 
fide tracks, connections and switches; its stations 
md eating houses all thoroughly well recognized by 
[he initiated ; its station agents and conductors, men 
mdaunted in danger and unswerving in their ad- 
icrence to principle ; its system of cypher dis- 
)atches, tokens and nomenclature which no attache 
^ver revealed except to those having a right to receive 
Ihem, and its detective force characterized by a 
|hrewdness in expedients and a versatility of strategy 
,'hich attached to any mere money making enter- 
)rise would have put " millions in it." It received 
le support of men and women from every class, 
ict, and party, though from some more than from 
^thers; its character was engraven, as by a pen of 
ire, in the hearts and consciences of men, burning 
leeper and deeper, until finally abrogated in that 
(rand emancipation proclamation of Abraham Lin- 
coln, when it was found that its stock, always un- 
^atered but by tears, had yielded an incomputable 
)ercentage in the freedom secured to over thirty-six 
lousand fugitives from human bondage, and em- 
)odied in houses, lands, schoolE, churches and social 
^nd domestic happiness. 
Now that the track is all pulled up ; that the roll- 
ig stock hay disappeared ; that most of the operators 
ind passengers have gone down into silence or are 




. Mtai 



dwelling in forgetfulness of accumulating years, and 
that only a few of the old stations remain as they 
were, a new generation pertinently inquires, " What 
called such a road into existence and how were its 
gigantic operations so successfully and yet so secretly 
carried on ? " 

To the first of these questions it may be replied 
that the history of American slavery is older than 
the story of Plymouth Rock. In the year 1619 a 
cargo of Africans, kidnapped on the coast of the 
" Dark Continent,'' was sold from the deck of a 
Dutch man-of-war at Jamestown, Va., to be used in 
the cultivation of tobacco along the river. 

At that time very little was thought about the 
enormity of human slavery. The labor proved re- 
munerative, and the institution spread over the origi- 
nal colonies, with little or no question, so that at the 
breaking out of the Revolution there were 500,000 
bondmen, a standing menace to the cause of freedom, 
and yet technically said to be " armed in the holy 
cause of liberty." 

On the adoption of the constitution in 1787, pub- 
lic sentiment had become so strong against the Afri- 
can slave trade that provision was made for its aboli- 
tion in 1808. Persistent effort was also made, par- 
ticularly by the Quakers, for the ultimate abolition 
of slavery itself, but without avail, as it was claimed 
by its apologists that it would ultimately die of its 
own accord — a prophecy in some sense fulfilled, 
though in a manner all undreamed by those who 
made it. 



Though Anti-slavery Societies had long been in 
vogue, of one of which Beniamin Franklin had been 
president, it was found by the census of 1800 that 
the country contained 893,000 slaves. From this 
time forward one after another of the Northern 
States abolished it, until it finally disappeared from 
New York last of all, July 4th, 1827. In the mean- 
time it was strengthened in the South. The inven- 
tion of the cotton gin and the extensive manufacture of 
sugar in the Gulf States, made the rearing of slaves 
in those farther north very lucrative, and slave marts 
were set up in many of their cities and towns to 
which men, women and children were brought and 
sold upon the auction block and at private sale. 

The slaves thus purchased in Maryland, Virginia, 
Kentucky and elsewhere for the more southern mar- 
kets were either driven across the country like so many 
cattle, or, if more convenient, taken down the Ohio 
and Mississippi on steam-boats or in flats, all those 
deemed likely to give trouble being handcuffed to- 
gether across a coffle chain, thus constituting a 
" coffle." 

On their arrival at the place of destination, they 
were more or less jaded and warm, and hence un- 
marketable until properly fitted up. To facilitate 
this, buildings or " pens '' were provided where they 
were well fed and given liberal rations of whiskey. 
Under the management of some genial dealer, they 
were induced to tell stories, sing songs and make 
merry. In this way they were soon recuperated and 







ready for the ordeals of another sale in which they 
were subjected to much the same scrutiny of body 
and limb that is bestowed upon a horse when- the 
person would ascertain its physical condition. 

To escape this degradation and the hardships of 
the southern plantations, the more intelligent and 
hardy of the slave population early began to flee to 
the free states as an asylum from cruel bondage. As 
if in anticipation of this, the constitution had pro- 
vided for their return, and under its provisions many 
were restored to their masters, through the cupidity 
cf sordid northern men, for the rewards offered. 

Finding so many of their chattels escaping and the 
sentiment against their return growing stronger and 
stronger, the southern people, with the aid of abettors 
at the north, succeeded in 1850, in securing the pas- 
sage of the Fugitive Slave-law, which imposed heavy 
fines and even imprisonment for in any way aiding 
a fugitive from slavery to escape. By its provisions 
every man at the North was virtually made a slave- 

Canada now became the goal of the fugitive, and 
to its safe retreat thousands escaped, and y«t so suc- 
cessful was the business of slave culture that in 1860 
the whole number of persons held as mere chattels, 
without a vested right in land, or home, or wife, or 
husband, or child, or life, even, that might not be 
served by the will of the master, amounted to 3,953,- 
000 souls. The bitterness of sectional feeling engen- 
dered by such a state of affairs, and the intense 




activity of nerve and intellect called forth thereby, 
can never be duly appreciated except by those who 
were active participants in the affairs of ten years 
a7ite be Hum. 

The second question, and, also, many points 
covered by the first, will be best answered by follow- 
ing the thread of these " Romances and Realties of 
the Underground Railrood," gathered as they are 
from personal observation, extensive reading, visita- 
tions along many of the old lines, and numerous 
interviews and extensive correspondence with those 
heroic men and women who dared their fortunes and 
their personal liberty in the cause of humr.nity and 
right, still lingering among us, as, also, with many a 
passenger over this truly wonderful thoroughfare. 

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:--■ .■^•■^■■!f^.^^ ■•^:: -- ■ v.. 






SO many and varied have been the changes of 
half a century, and so rapid the growth of the 
city in the past twenty-five years, that few of the 
present inhabitants of Washington, and less of its 
old-time frequenters, now ever think of the cemetery 
that skirted the stage road leading north from the 
city. True, in those by-gone days it was a popular 
burial place, even for the first families of the capital, 
but like many another " silent city " it long since fell 
into disuse, and consequently became for years the 
most desirable place near the city for an underground 
railroad station, and to such use it was assidiously 

In this solitary place, on a quiet Sabbath evening 
of October, 1839, there was heard just as the last faint 
twilight trembled on the western horizon a low, dis- 
tinct whistle. Immediately there arose from among 
the growth of bushes and from behind already re- 
clining headstones five dusky forms, actuated evi- 
dently by the same impulse. The whistle was 
repeated, and the forms cautiously approached the 
point whence it proceeded, and there gathered in 







mm'' «% 
two*'" it* 


i \ 




1 1 


presence of a stranger to them all, but with no pre- 
vious knowledge of each other's intent, though all of 
them were the property of the same man, Colonel 
Hardy, a tobacco planter of the District of Columbia, 
as previously stated in the " Introduction " to these 
*' Romances and Realities." 

The first exclamations of surprise over, their un- 
known companion proceeded to give them the 
instructions for the night, after allaying their super- 
stitious fears, that they were to sink into the earth 
for a time, and be under the conduct of invisible 
personages. Indeed, so far from that being the case 
they soon found very much depended upon their 
own physical exertion. No sinking down into the 
ground among the dead, no sojourn among spooks 
and ghosts, impressions that had almost gotten the 
better of their thirst for freedom, was to be theirs. 
On the contrary they were to take at once to the 
pike and follow it until they came to the said road, 
which was then to be their pathway, only turning 
out to pass around villages and stations until they 
came to a man standing in the track who should 
signal them by the simple name " Ben." To him 
they were to yield themselves implicitly. 

Seeing the little company once fairly started, the 
stranger returned to the city, and as he i)assed the 
postoffice deposited therein a letter addressed, 

'* JOHN JONES, Esq., 


N V. 




Leaving this missive and the fugitives to pursue 
their respective journeys, we pause to inquire into 
the personalities of the latter. They were named, 
respectively, Nancy, Kate, Robert, Harry and Jo, or 
more complete, Jo Norton. 

As has been said, they were the property of one 
man, and when not needed on the plantation, were 
hired out in the city. Harry was recognized among 
his fellows as a man of spirit and ability ; but the 
latter quality never saved him from the frequent 
"buckings" engendered by the two free play of the 
former. Nancy, an octaroon, was well formed, about 
twenty years of age, and accordmg to Kate, who had 
a spontaneous gift of gossip, a special favorite of the 
" Kunnel." 

Jo Norton was a sprighty, intelligent fellow, and 
had a wife named Mary, who, with their little boy, 
was the property of a Mr. Judson, residing in the 
city. In his boyhood Jo had been continually em- 
ployed upon the plantation, but after he was sixteen 
was engaged at a hotel during the winter for several 
years. For a long time in this place it was his 
special duty to wait upon Daniel Webster at table 
and otherwise. It was whilst thus employed that 
he became acquainted with and won Mary, who had 
the care of the great statesman's rooms. During the 
summer, the Colonel, when reasonably good natured, 
allowed Jo to visit his wife and child once in two 
weeks, on Sunday. W^hen too choleric to grant his 
"chattel " this indulgence, a pass was readily sucured 




^Vl 1 flPVMH ^F 




MMi'" tHj 


,;f iPS I 





from the old man's daughter, who was his private 
secretary, and with whom Jo was a great favorite. 
In these visits the possibility of an escepe, more 
especially for the sake of their boy, was frequently 
discussed, though no plan was ever perfected. 

One evening whilst returning from one of these 
visitations, Jo fell in company with a gentleman 
whose manner so impressed him that he asked if he 
were not from " de Norf.". 

" Yes, from Massachusetts," said the stranger. 

" Wy, Massa, dat am de home ob de great Dan'l 

" Yes ; I know him very well." 

" Yes, Massa, an' doan dis chile knows dat great 
man to?" 

" How is that ? " 

" Wy, Massa, doan I stan' 'hind his chaah all dese 
winters wen him comes to Congress ? " 

" Ah, I see. But wouldn't you like to go north 
and be free ? " 

" Lor' Massa, dat was wat Mary and I talks 'bout 
dis blessed day." 

"Who is Mary?" 

•' Mary am my wife, sah, and James am my little 
boy. Da'longs to anuder man." 

" A wife and child ! " said the stranger half mus- 
ingly. " Well my good fellow, we will see what can 
be done, but we must talk no more now. Meet me 
on the corner of " F " and the Avenue two weeks 
from to-day at noon." 



" Yes iSah," and the two parted. 

Two weeks passed, and, as agreed, the parties met, 
the one readily assuming the air of a southern gen- 
tleman and the other instinctively falling into the 
role of his servant. Thus they passed on until a 
quiet place was reached, when it V/as agreed that Jo 
should take a designated place in the old cemetery 
three weeks from that night, but that Mary and the 
child should be left in the city till a fitting way for 
their escape presented itself. In the mean time the 
other parties had been separately interviewed, and 
assigned their several hiding places, and given the 
signal which would call them into the presence of a 
stranger. Thus it was that they came together un- 


Once upon the public highway the little party 
struck out briskly for the railroad upon which thev 
turned their faces towards Baltimore, and following 
their instructions were making fine progress, when, 
about midnight, as they were passing around a vil- 
lage the heavens became suddenly overcast with 
clouds, and for an hour or more they wandered in 
uncertainty. A halt being called, a lively discussion 
based upon five different opinions arose, and how it 
might have terminated no one can tell had not the 
heavens just then cleared up, enabling Harry, who 
was both conductor to and astronomer for the train, 
to get their bearings from " de ol' norf." So much 

I li'lr... 






time had thus been lost that daybreak was just be- 
ginning to tinge the east when the mystical word 
" Ben " fell from the lips of a man standing upon 
the track, whom they at once followed for some dis- 
tance into a corn-field, where he removed several 
bundels from a stack of corn-fodder, and the two 
women entered a "dodger" apartment, whilst the 
men were similarly secreted a little farther on. 

A thirty mile walk had given them a good appe- 
tite for the bountiful breakfast provided, after par- 
taking of which they lay down and slept soundly, 
whilst " Old Ben," a free negro who had been fur- 
nished the means to rent and till this field and ar- 
range it as a " way station," kept constant vigil and 
obliterated their tracks by husking corn pnd care- 
fully drawing the stocks over them. 


Morning came in the city, and soon the absence of 
the servants from their employers was reported at 
the plantation, where the non-iippearance of Jo had 
already caused the Colonel to give his daughter a 
special cursing for "letting that d — d nigger, Jo, have 
a pass." Hounds and hunters were at once called 
into requisition, but all in vain. All about the 
country was scoured and searched, but Uncle Ben's 
field was so public and he so honest, that no one 
thought of troubling it, or him. 

Night came, and under cover of the first hour of 
darkness the two women were taken in charge by a 



man who led them rapidly along the railroad track 
till they came to a road where a carriage received 
them and they were driven rapidly into the city of 
Baltimore and there carefully secreted. Scarcely 
had they departed when a pack of hounds came into 
the f eld, and, after scenting around for some time, 
struck their track and were off in pursuit with such 
a wild scream as to waken the men from their quiet 

Meanwhile the letter addressed to Mr. Jones was 
speeding on its way, p.nd in due time on an editorial 
derived therefrom, the compositors in the office of 
the Liberty Press ac Albany were busy, and on Fri- 
day Col. Hardy received a marked copy of that paper 
which informed him that his " chattels " arrived safe 
in Albany on Tuesday evening, and of course all 
farther effort for their recovery was stopped, though 
the atmosphere was for some time blue from the ef- 
fects of the forcible vocabulary which this piece of 
news, manufactured specially for a southern market, 
eliminated from the old Colonel's tongue. 


All iminent danger from direct pursuit being now 
over, early on Saturday evening Ben led the boys 
forth and placed them in charge of a sprightly colored 
boy about thirteen years of age, whom they v/ere to 
keep constantly in wight as they passed through 
Baltimo^-e, and, as he bestowed on them a little 
money, he said : *' Now, boys, foHah yer guide, and 









feah no danjah, and de good Lor' bress you and 
bring you safe to freedom." 

With nimble steps they passed over the road to the 
city, and there stopped for a short time at a meeting 
of colored Methodists, of which faith were Jo and 
Harry, and joined lustily in the " Hallilujahs " and 
songs of praise. The meeting over, they fell in with 
the departing congregetion, and as they passed 
through the principal streets were veciforous in their 
praise of" the pow'fu' preachin' ob dat 'sidin' eldah, 
and de snipshus singin' ob de yaller gal wid de red 
rib'n," stopping occasionally to buy a few nuts or 
apples at some grocer's stand, ever keeping their 
little woolly headed conductor in sight, and before 
the hour forbidding the presence of colored people 
on the streets, were beyond the city limits, and again 
in company with Kate and Nancy, who had been 
brought to a place of rendezvous by a gentleman 
who proceeded to give the party specific instructions 
for the night. This done, fleetly they sped forward 
as directed until well towards day-dawn, when con- 
ductor Harry espied two flickering lights placed side 
by side in an upper window, and exclaimed : " Bress 
de Lor' dah am de sign of rest." 

"Yes, bress de Lor', O my sou'," ejaculated the 
thoroughly wearied Kate, "an if dis be de unner 
groun' railroad whar ebery one furnish his cah his- 
self, I'd radder ride wid ol' Lijah in a charyot ob fiah." 

" Hush, honey, what foah you complain ? dis am 
gwine ober Jordan to de Ian' ob res '." 

■■ — "-jr--,'--: "J ■-"'.- 




" Yes, an' Jordan am a hard road to trabel, 

shu " but the sentence was abruptly broken by 

the clear enunciation of " Thee will tarry here for the 

The words proceeded from beneath a broad 
brimmed hat which emerged from among some 
shrubbery, and the party were quickly conducted 
into a spacious Quaker kitchen where a bountiful re- 
past was in waiting for them, after partaking of 
which they were consigned to safe quarters for the 

From this hospitable retreat, they sallied forth on 
Monday evening for another night journey, only to 
find in its ending a duplicate of the preceding one ; 
and in this way the whole distance from Baltimore 
to Philadelphia was made on foot. 

Once in the Quaker city, they were quietly put on 
a fishing smack and conveyed to Bordentown. At 
the latter place, under the management of a shrewd 
Quaker, a personal friend of the railroad agent, the 
boys were hid away among boxes and bales of goods 
in a freight car and were soon on their way to 
Gotham. Meanwhile the girls were dressed for the 
occasion, and at evening, closely veiled, just as the 
train was starting, wore escorted into a coach by a 
gentleman assuming the full Southern air, and who 
had no hesitancy in pushing aside a watcher for run- 
aways stationed at the door. At New York they 
again rejoined the " way freight," and the whole 
party were at once sent on to Albany, where tb jy 




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arrived after a journey of tv/enty days instead of two 
as supposed in Washington. 


Apropos of the lamentable exhibitions of mob- 
violence, court-house burning, Sabbath desecration 
and election frauds presented by Cincinnati in the 
past few years, it may not be amiss to give a little 
exhibition of the spirit there manifested by the men 
of a past generation and see whence some of her pres- 
ent unenviable reputation comes. The city was well 
known to be intensely pro-slavery and to her came 
many a haughty Southron for purposes of business 
or pleasure, bringing with him more or less of his 
chattels as attendants. Among the comers of the 
summer of 1843, was a man named Scanlan, visiting 
his brother-in-law, one Hawkins. He brought with 
his family a pretty slave girl named Lavinia, some 
ten years old. 

Before the party left New Orleans, the mother of 
the girl, a slave in that city, had given her the fol- 
lowing admonitory instructian: — "Now 'Vinya, yer 
Massa's gwine for ter take yer Norf, an' wen yer gets 
to Sinsnate, chile, yer free, an' he'll sen' some good 
anj'l for to hide yer un'er him wing ; an' if you doan 
go wid him, but kum back to dis Souf wid yer ol' 
Massa, dis very ban '11 take yer black skin right off 
yer back shuah. Mebbe wen yer safe in dat free Ian', 
yer ol' muder'll fin' yer thar if the good Lor' be 
Willi n '." Then she placed around the neck of the 





girl a small gold chain which was to be continually 
worn, that if they ever chanced to meet in Canada, 
the mother might know her child. 

Once in Cincinnati, Lavinia began looking care- 
fully for some " good anj'l," but instead, soon found 
two in the person of a colored man and his wife liv- 
ing near Mr. Hawkins'. To those she carefully com- 
mitted her mother's counsel and threat. These 
parties entered heartily into her proposition to es- 
cape, and one night dressed her in a suit of boy's 
clothes and took her to the head of Spring street, 
near the foot of Sycamore Hill, and gave her in 
charge of Samuel Reynolds, a well-known Quaker, 
where she was successfully concealed for a number 
of days whilst Scanlan was raging about and as far 
as possible instituting a vigorous search. 

Not far from Mr. Revnolds was the home of Ed- 


ward Harwood in whose family resided John H. 
Coleman, a dealer in marble. The Harwoods and 
Colemans were ardent Abolitionists and ready to 
stand by any panting fugitive to the last. Mrs. 
Harwood's house stood on a side hill with a steep 
grade in front, and the narrow yard was reached by 
a flight of some twenty steps, whilst the side and 
rear were easily accessible. 

After a time Mrs. Harwood, who had become 
much interested in Lavinia, took her home, where 
she was carefully concealed during the day, but al- 
lowed a little exercise in the dusk of the evening in 
the front yard, which was so high above the street as 
to be un observable. 



! li; 










One evening when the girl was thus engaged the 
great house dog, Swamp, which always accompanied 
her kept up such a growling and snarling, as induced 
the men to think there might be foul play brewing 
and they went out several times but could detect 
nothing. Finally one of them said, " That child had 
better come in ; some one may be watching for her," 
upon which Mrs. Coleman put her head out of the 
window and calling her by name, bade her come in, 
after which all was quiet for the night. 

Dinner over the next day, the gentlemen had 
taken their departure down town, the ladies were 
busy about their work ; an invalid gentleman was 
reclining in an easy chair and the girl had fallen 
asleep up-stairs, when a man suddenly appeared at 
the top of the flight of steps and very uncermoni- 
ously entered the front door which was open, and 
looking hurridly around roughly demanded, 
" Where's my child ? I want my child, and if you 
don't give her up there'll be trouble." 

It needed no further evidence to convince the 
ladies it was Scanlan, an impression which had 
seized them both even before he had spoken, but 
then they were not the kind to be scared by his 
bluster, and Mrs. Coleman replied with spirit *' You 
have no child here and if you were a gentleman you 
would not be here yourself." 

At this Scanlon turned upon her and whilst his 
fists were clinched and his face livid with rage, ex- 
claimed, " I tell you she is here, my slave girl, 



Lavinia ; I saw her last night myself ; and if it had 
not been for you, madam, and that devlish dog there, 
I should have gotten her then. I had her nearly 
within my grasp when you bade her come in. I say 
where is my child ? Give her up." 

"You have no child here," coolly replied Mrs. 
Coleman again. 

" I say I have, and if she hears me call she will 
answer me." Saying which he went to the stairway 
and called " Lavinia, Lavinia." 

The child heard the voice, recognized it, and at 
once quietly hid herself within the bed. Though 
fhe call was repeated several times, no answer came, 
and Mrs. Coleman inquired, "Are you satisfied 

" I know my child is here, and you cursed Abo- 
litionist have hidden her away," said the now almost 
frantic Scanlan. " You need not think you are go- 
ing to fool me. I'm going to have my child, my 
slave, my property. I shall go down town and get 
a warrant and an officer to search your house, and 
you'll get no chance to run the girl away either, for 
I shall leave a guard over you whilst I am gone," 
then stepping to the door he said, " Hawkins, come 
in here," and the brother-in-law, before unseen by 
the inmates of the house, entered. " Now, Mr. 
Hawkins, I am going for a warrant, and I want you 
to see that my child does not get away till the officer 
comes," saying which Scanlon took his departure 
and Hawkins a seat, though evidently very ill at ease. 

I rill IWII il~.iW,( If 

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When part way down town the Southron recog- 
nized Mr. Harwood coming up the hill in his buggy, 
and thinking to intimidate him said, " I am after 
my slave girl who is in youi house. Your women 
refuse to give her up. You will find the place well 
guarded, and I will soon have a warrant to search 
the place." 

*' I'll make it hotter than tophet for any one guard- 
ing my house, and the man who comes about my 
premises with a search warrant until I am accused 
of murder or theft, does so at his peril," was the 
warm reply, as Mr. Harwood started rapidly towards 
his home. Arriving there he thus addressed Mr. 
Hawkins : "I am told, sir, you are here to guard 
my house and family. We have need of no such 
attention, and if you do not immediately depart 
from our premises I shall pitch you headlong into 
the street. Be gone you miserable tool of a most 
miserable whelp." J .st then the cowed and crest- 
fallen Hawkins niiKir a practical application of his 
knowledge of Shakespeare, and stood not upon his 

Remembering the great pro-slavery mob of 1836, 
when the office of James G. Birney's paper, The 
Phiianihropist^ was destroyed, and that of 1841, when 
but for the prompt action of Governor Corwin in 
aiding the arming of the students, an attack would 
have been made upon Lane Seminary as a "d — d 
Abolition hole," Scanlan hastened to the " Alham- 
bra," then a popular saloon, gathered about him a 



band of roughs and after a treat all round proceeded 
to harangue them regarding his loss and also his un- 
availing efforts to regain his chattel. Under the in- 
fluence of his speech and the more potent one of an 
open bar, the crowd readily promised him their sup- 
port, and arranged to be at the hill in the evening 
time to see the fun. 

Meantime Mr. Harwood was apprising his friends 
of the state of affairs, and these were beginning to 
gather at his house. One of them, an employee of 
Mr. Coleman, as he came up the hill, found a 
number of flags already set to guide the mob to the 
Harwood residence. These were torn down. Before 
the arrival of Mr. Coleman a crowd of excited people 
had assembled in the street below the house. Seeing 
among them an officer notorious for his cupidity and 
in entire sympathy with the slave catchers, Mr. Cole- 
man approached him and shaking hands said, " Why 
how do you do, Mr. O'Neil? I am told you have a 
search-warrant for my house." 

"For your house?" 

" Yes ; here is where I live and I wish to know 
on what grounds you intend to search my house, as 
I am not aware of having laid myself liable to such 
a process." 

*' There must be some mistake," said the officer. 
"Indeed, Mr. Coleman, I must have been misin- 
formed as to the merits of the case." 

" Let me see the paper," persisted Mr. Coleman. 

" No," said O'Neil, "there is a blunder somewhere," 



P »il 



and he pushed his way, in a discomfited manner, 
through the crowd and disappeared. 

As the crowd increased in the streets, the friends 
of Mr. Harwood arrived, until all the Abolitionists 
in the city, some forty in number, were present. Mr. 
Harwood stood on the front steps with Swamp, and 
when anyone evinced a purpose to ascend the steps 
the fine display of ivory in the dog's mouth cooled 
his ardor. Mr. Coleman and Alf Burnet, afterwards 
well known in anti-slavery circles, went to a Dutch 
armory and secured a quantity of arms and ammu- 
nition ; the women took up the carpet in the parlor 
which soon presented the appearance of a military 
bivouac, whilst papers and valuables were hurried 
off to other houses, and a strong guard was placed 
before the door. An application was made to the 
sheriff for protection, but he only replied, " If you 
make yourself obnoxious to your neighbors, you 
must suffer the consequences." 

Whilst Scanlan was making his infiamatory 
speeches down town, and subsidizing the saloons, La- 
vinia was redressing in her boy's suit and was quietly 
taken out on a back street to a Mr. Emery's, the 
crowd meanwhile crying, " Bring out the lousy 

huzzy ; where is the black b ch ? " and other 

equally classic expressions. One blear-eyed ruffian 
exclaimed, " If my j)roperty was in thar, I'd have it 
or I'd have the d — d Abolitionist's heart's blood, I 
would.' Another one, equally valorous called out, 
" Go in boys ; why don't you go in ? " and a score of 



voices responded, " Go in yourseK The nigger ain't 
ourn. Where's the boss? Guess he's afraid of 
shootin' irons," a feehng that evidently pervaded the 
whole assemblage. 

Being without a leader, and having no perL.nal 
interest at stake, about dark the mob moved down 
the street, stoning and materially damaging the 
house of Alf. Burnett's father as they passed by. 
The old gentleman gathered up a large quantity of 
the missiles and kept them on exhibition for several 
years as samples of pro-slavery arguments. 

Scanlan vented his spleen and breathed out his 
threatenings through the city papers, but being un- 
able to get any redress, and finding he was to be 
l)rosecuted for trespass, he hastily decamped for 
New Orleans. 

After a week or two, Livinia, dressed in her mas- 
culin suit went with some boys who were driving 
their cows to the hills to pasture, and was by them 
placed in the care of a conductor^ by whom she was 
safely forwarded to Oberlin. Here she was found to 
have a fine mind, was befittingly educated, and ulti- 
mately sent as a missionary to Africa. After the 
lapse of several years she returned to this country, 
and whilst visiting the friends in Cincinnati, who 
had so kindly befriended her in the days of her 
childhood, suddenly sickened and died. 



III wi ■!*"*'' - 



lIlRWl «tft 

ihihW' 4^W 


III iMtiMl^r ^ 




Serious and earnest as was the work of our rail- 
road, it was made the pretext fur many a practical 
joke and arrant fraud. In the north part of Trum- 
bull county, Ohio, lived an ancient agent named 
BartJett, having in his employ a newly married man 
named DeWitt, a rollocking kind of a fellow, and 
well calculated to personate a son of Ham, or 
daughter as well. DeWitt conspired with his wife 
ana some of the female members of the old gentle- 
man's family to have a little fun at Mr. Bartlett's ex- 
pense. Some thrown oft' apparel of Mrs. Bartlett 
was procured from the garret, and, properly black- 
ened, he was attired in a grotesque manner. 

Just at evening a decrepid wench applied for ad- 
mission at Mr. Bartlett's door. The women appeared 
very much frightened and were about shutting the 
door in her face, when the old gentleman, hearing 
the negro dialect came to the rescue. Soon the 
wanderer was comfortably seated, and to Mr. Bartlett's 
inquiry as to where she was from replied, " Oh I or', 
Massa, Fse from ol' Virginny an' I'se boun' for 
Canady, and Massa Sutlitil, he *ells me I mus' cum 
heah, but de white missus scare at dis ol' black face.'' 

"0 well, never mind that, they are all right now.'* 

" Bress de Lor' for dat." 

Speaking to his wife, Mr. Bartlett directed some 
supper be prepared before he should send her on. 

" O no, Massa, I'se been done and eat supper dis 
bressed day.' 



" Well, then, we'll arrange to send you on soon^ 
but come and see my grandson," a lad lying .sick in 
the other part of the room, saying which he arose 
and took the hanu of the dame and led her to the bed- 
side, and laying his hand across her stooped shoulders, 
began to speak tenderly of the little sufferer. 

The risibilities of the counterfeit Dinah were now 
at their utmost tension and she contrived to place a 
foot heavily upon the caudal appendage of the great 
house dog lying near. There was a sudden bound of 
the brute, accompanied by a most unearthly howl, 
and away darted the decripit fugitive, shrieking, " 
Lor' de houn', de houn'." 

It was in vain the philanthropic old agent called 
after her, that there was no danger; on she sped un- 
til an opportunity offered to restore herself to Ja- 
phetic hue and male attire. 

Mr. Bartlett long upbraided the female portion of 
his household for want of humanity on that occa- 
sion, but was allowed to die in blissful ignorance of 
the ruse played upon him, and DeWitt confessed 
that the ultimate fun derived therefrom scarcely 
compensated for the annoyance of the old gentleman 
and the trouble of removmg the cork. 


A year has passed anxiously at Alban/ with Jo. 
Rumors reached him that in an attempt to escape, 
Mary had been captured and sold into the south 
forever beyond his reach. Gathering up.his earnings 

il iitmi 





'< Nail «| 



I V 

and bidding his companions good-by, he started 
rather aimlessly westward, and where he would 
have brought up no one can tell, had he not one day 
met a stranger, a pleasant, benevolent looking gentle- 
near the village of Versailles, N. Y. It was 


just at the close of that most hilarious campaign in 
which the C17 of " Tippecano and Tyler too," with 
" two dollars a day and roast beef," mollified with 
liberal potations of " hard cider," rendered " Little 
Matty Van a used up man," though the result was 
not yet ascertained, for no telegraph had learned to 
herald its lightning message in advance of time. If 
no other good came from the campaign, it had given 
every class of men the free use of the tongue in 
hurrahing for his favorite candidate, and foot-sore 
and hungry as he was, there was something about 
the gentleman that said to Jo, " Now is your oppor- 
tunity," and touching his hat in genuine politeness 
he called out, " Hooraw for 01' Tip." 

Good naturedly the gentleman responded, " Well, 
my good fellow, it is a little late for you to be hur- 
rahing for any candidate now that election is over, 
and, though you didn't quite strike my man, I shall 
find no fault. I know what you want more than 
'hard cider.' It is a night's food and lodging." 

" Thank you Massa, I'se tired and hungry, an' de 
fac' am I doan know what to do with myself." 

"Well, no matter about that just now. Come 
along ; " and Eber M. Pettit, long known as an 
earnest Abolitionist in Cattaraugus and Chautauqua 





counties, led the disheartened wanderer to his home, 
where, after supper, he questioned him as to his 
history, and when he had learned his unvarnished 
tale, he suggested that the man should stay with him 
that winter as a man-of-all-chores, and attend the 
village school. 

As a result of that evening's conference there ap- 
peared among the children of the district school in a 
few days a colored man of about twenty five years 
of age, learning with the youngest of tham his a b c. 
This was an innovation, unique in the extreme. 
Some of the villagers turned up their noses at the 
" nigger," but the social standing of Mr. Pettit, and 
the fitory of .Jo which was freely circulated among 
the people, together with his genial disposition and 
kindness of manner, soon silenced all cavil and the 
school quietly progressed. 

Learning that the editor of the Liberty Press was 
in Washington, Mr. Pettit addressed him in the fol- 
lowing letter: 

Versailles, N. Y., Dec. i, 1840. 

Dear. General. — I have at my house a colored man named 

Jo Norton. Something over a year ago he left a wife and 

child in the Capital, the property of a Mr. Judson. She was 

to iiave been brought off directly after he left, but the effort 

failed and he understands she has been sold South. Will 

you be so kind as to inquire into the matter aud see what 

can be done in the case if anything ? Make your return to 

Jo Nonon, direct. 

Yours Truly, 

Gen. W. L. Chaplain, 

Washington, D. C. 

E. M. Pettit. 

(MNf t In.'.- i-ij^l tP 











This letter was duly posted, and on the morrow an 
ebony face, the very picture of expectancy, put in an 
appearance at the village post office with the query, 
" Any letter for Jo Norton, Massa pos' massa ? " 
Thus it was twice a day for a week, when his unso- 
phisticated importunity was rewarded by a missive 
bearing the address, 

/o Norton, Esq. , 
Care E. M. Pettit, Esq. N. Y. 

and bearing the post-mark of the Capital. It read 
as follows : 

Mr. Norton, Dear Sir: 

The woman about whom Mr. Pettit wrote me is here. 

After her husband's escape she was detected in what was 

thought to be an effort to leave and was thrown into prison, 

where she lost an infant child. After three months she was 

visited by her master, and on a solemn promise never to 

make another effort to run away she was taken back to the 

family where she and the boy appear to be treated with great 

kindness. Though he has been offered $800 for her, Mr. 

Judson said he never sold a slave, and never will, but if her 

husband can raise $350 for them by March 4th, proximo, 

they will be given free papers so I can bring them North 

with me at that time. 


W. L. Chaplain. 

At the reading of this letter, Jo, prompted by the 
fervent piety of his nature, broke into hysterical fite 
of laughter, interspersed with " Bress de Lor', bress 
de Lor'." But when the first paroxysm of joy was 
over he became very despondent, for he had no $35Q 



and no friend to whom to appeal for it ; but here, as 
before, Mr. Pettit came to the rescue. 

"See here, Jo," he said, "there are nearly three 
months to the fourth of March, and yours is a won- 
derful story. You shall go forth and tell it to the 
people, and the money will come." 

" Wy, bress de Lor', Massa Pettit, dis chile can 
nebber do dat. De people would jus' laf at de 

" Never mind the laugh, Jo. If you love Mary 
and the boy you can stand the laughing. Now be a 
man. I will go with you and see you start ; " and 
before bed-time he had laid out the work for his 
ward, in whom he had now become thoroughl}'^ inter- 
ested, and had listened several times to his rehearsal 
of his story of escape and tale of plantation life, and 
offered such suggestions as he thought advisable, and 
that night Jo went to bed " to sleep ; to dream." To 
dream of wife and boy in slavery, and himself mak- 
ing speeches among the white people of the North 
for their deliverance. 

The next morning Mr. Pettit went out into the 
country a few miles where he had a number of 
Abolition friends and made full arrangements for 
Jo's speaking there early the next week. In the 
meantime the word was thoroughly circulated whilst 
Jo was most effectively schooled to his new field, and 
on the appointed evening the school-house was filled 
to overflowing. Jo told his story in such a man- 
ner as to draw out rounds of approbative applause 

fNMllMiMtiiiil IP 






(MMIi ,^1 

ijl iP 






from the mouths of the audience, and six dollars 
from their pockets when the hat was passed round. 
Meetings were held immediately in the several school 
districts in the vicinity with marked success, and 
then Jo, highly inspired, left school and started out 
on a systematic course of lectures which took him 
to Westfield, Mayville and other villages of Chau- 
tauqua county as well as Cattaraugus. 

On the 25th day of January Mr. Pettit received 
the following from Washington : 

" Dear Pettit. — If Judson can have I300 by February first, 
he will deliver up the woman and child of whom we have 

had correspondence. 

In haste, 

W. L. Chaplain." 

He hastened to Ellicottville and found that Jo had 
already realized $100. A meeting was immediately 
called in an office in the village, at which were pres- 
ent Judge Chamberlin, of Randolph, E. S. Coleman, 
of Dunkirk, and several other gentlemen. The letter 
was read, and at the suggestion of the Judge a note 
for two hundred dollars was drawn and signed by 
ten of them, with the understanding that they were 
to share equally in the payment of any deficit after 
Jo had done his best. The money was advanced 
by Mr. Coleman, and one of the psirty drove fifty 
miles to Buffalo, through a pelting storm, purchased 
a draft, forwarded it to Mr. Coleman, and before the 
*' days of grace " had expired Maty and her child 
were duly registered and delivered as free people. V^ 

.r- ^ 



Meanwhile Jo's story had gotten into the papers 
of Western New York, and he had calls from various 
places to lecture ; indeed, he had become quite a 
local lion, and so successful that early in March 
when word came that Mary and the child had 
reached Utica, he was the possesser of $195. This 
he deposited in the hands of Mr. Pettit who returned 
him $30 and told him to go and make provision for 
his wife and child, and pay the balance of the note 
when he could. Though he had walked that day 
from Buffalo, a distance of nearly thirty miles, Jo 
immediately returned, and early the next day, in 
the home of a leading Abolitionist in Utica there 
was a regular " Hal'lujer ; Bress de Lor', for de Lor' 
will bress his people," time when Jo and Mary met 
after their seemingly hopeless separation. 


Ten years and more had passed ; the Ellicottville 
note had been long settled; Jo had laid aside his 
mission as a lecturer and gone into business in Syra- 
cuse, N. Y., where he owned a pleasant home and 
had a family of intelligent children attending the 
public school ; New York State, like the country at 
large, had been convulsed over the slavery question, 
and the city of his adoption had become a town of 
intensely Abolition sentiment. As the outgrowth of 
the slavery agitation there had come the enactment 
of the " Fugitive Slave Law," as it was popularly, or 
rather unpopularly called, by means of which the 









South thought to render imperative the rendition of 
their runaway slaves. But they had counted without 
their host. Though successful in cracking their 
whips over the heads of Northern law-makers in the 
Capitol, the great mass of the people of the free 
states, no matter what their political affiliations, felt 
outraged at the idea of being converted into a set of 
legally constituted slave hunters. Few places more 
excited the ire of the chivalry than Syracuse, and the 
threat was defiantly made that if another anti-slavery 
convention was held in the city it should be en- 
livened by the seizure of a fugitive of whom a test 
case could be made. 

Not to be thus intimidated, a call for such a con- 
vention was issued and at the appointed time com- 
menced. Whilst the delegates were organizing in the 
old Market Hall, in a cooper shop in another part of 
the city, all unconscious of danger, a colored man 
named Jerry, who had some years before escaped 
from slavery, was busy engaged at his labor, when 
he was suddenly pounced upon by a marshal and 
his deputies from Rochester, and, after a brave re- 
sistance, overpowered, manacled and thrown into a 
cart secured for that purpose, and hurried away to 
the commissioner's office, closely guarded. The news 
of the arrest spead like wild-fire, and soon the streets 
were thronged with excited people. A man rushed 
into the convention and called out : " Mr. President 
a fugitive has been arrested and they are trying to 
hurry him away." Without motion, the convention 



adjourned, and the delegates and attendants were 
added to the throng already in the street. The up- 
roar was equal to that, when, for the " space of two 
hours," the people cried, " Great is Diana of the 
Ephesians," but more concentrated, and the cause of 
coming together better understood. 

Jerry was hurried into the commissioner's office, 
the lower door to which was heavily barrea and the 
upper one securely bolted, so that it was with diffi- 
culty that his council and more immediate friends 
obtained admission. 

The court once opened, within there was conten- 
tion, parley, quibble and delay until twilight fell ; 
without, the building was immediately surrounded 
by fugitives who had found an asylum in and about 
the city, and free colored people, among whom Jo 
Norton towered like Saul among his brethren, and 
beyond these an immense multitude of citizens who 
had stood waiting all the afternoon of that eventful 
day, manifesting no disposition to retire. 

When It was announced that the court had ad- 
journed for supper, it was soon evident that the 
decisive hour had come. A heavy timber was lifted 
to the shoulders of some sturiy negroes, and using 
the temporary space accorded them, at the watch- 
word "Jo "they harled it with such force against 
the door that bars and hinges gave way, and Norton, 
crowbar in hand, at the head of a storming column 
entered the stairway hall. The marshal was a man 
of nerve and disclaimed against any attempt on the 

iM<lm.>mi| III 


i"- ""I 




II » 

■ '! 

■ i i 







inner door, but in vain. A few vigorous blows of 
the crowbar forced it open ; there was the sharp re- 
port of a pistol succeeded by a quick blow of the 
bar, and Jo unharmed, stood master of the situation, 
whilst the right arm of the marshal hung useless at 
his side. The posse scattered, the marshal saving 
himself by jumping from the second story window 
and skulking away in the dark; Jerry, who had 
been very roughly treated, was unloosed, and by 
daylight was well on his way to Canada, whilst the 
convention resumed its deliberations the r t day 
amid the congratulations of many who be ^ had 
looked upon its purpose with indifference or abso- 
lute opposition. 

As for Jo, though defying slave-hunters and their 
hirelings as such, having now arrayed himself by an 
act of violence against the government, he took 
the advice of judicious friends, and soon removed to 
Canada, where for years he was an esteemed citizen, 
and a friend and adviser of those who came to his 
locality as fugitives. 


As an index of Jo's native quickness of perception, 
the following excerpts, taken from Pettit's " Sketches 
of the Underground Railroad," published some years 
ago by W. McKinstry & Son, are added, the only 
change being that the places where the events are 
thought to have taken place are given. 

" Jo was a serious, devoted Christian, yet his wit 




and mirthfulnes3 were often exhibited in keen, sar- 
castic repartee. At Delanti the question was asked, 
' Did you work hard when you were a slave?' 

*No! I didn't work hard when I could help it.' 

' Did you have enough to eat ? ' 

' Yes, such as it was.' 

* Did you have decent clothes ? ' 

* Yes, midlin'.' 

' Well, you were better off than most people are 
here, and you were a fool to run away. ' 

* Well, now, the place 1 lef ' is there yet, I s'pose. 
Guess nobody's never got into it, and if my frien' 
here wants it, he can have it fo' the askin,' though 
p'raps he better get his member of Congress to recom- 
mend him,'' " 

" At Westfield, a fellow asked, ' Is the speaker in 
favor of amalgamation ? ' 

* 'Gamation I what's dat? ' 

* It means whites and blacks marrying together.' 

* dat's it ! as fo' such things they 'pends mostly 
on peples' tas'. Fo' my part, I have a colored 
woman fo' a wife, — that's my choice, — an' if my 
frien' here wants a black wife, an' if she is pleased 
with him, I'm suah I shant get mad about it.'" 

" Soon after he commenced collecting funds to re- 
deem his family from bondage, he was invited to go 
to a school house in Villenova. When near the 
place he saw two boys chopping, and heard one of 
them say : * There's the nigger.' 

'^ Jo stopped and said : ^ I ain't a nigger ! I 

In MM,..\^[ lit 

In ' N™»jw H 
llliMMW' ' 

II' I 


(V«V M H 

.«"" ..I 






• ••! 

alius pays my debts ; my raassa was a nigger. See 
here ! when you chop, you be a chopper, ain't dat 

' Yes,' responded the boys. 

' Well, when a man nigs^ I call him a nigger. 
Now ol' massa nigged me out of all I earned in my 
li^e. Of course he is a nigger.' Then Jo sang the 
chorus to one of Geo. W. Clark's Liberty songs : 

• They worked me all de day, 
Widout one cent of pay ; 
So I took my flight 
In de middle ob de night, 
When de moon am gone away.' 

' Now, boys, come over to the school-house this 
evening and I'll sing you the res' of it' That even- 
ing Jo had a full house and a good collection." 



Having given a brief account of the " Jerry Res- 
cue" at Syracuse, a circumstance fraught with mo- 
mentus consequences, and no inconsiderable factor 
in precipitating the "Impending Crisis," I now pass 
to consider the real original *' Jerry Rescue." 

In the early summer of 1834, there came to 
Austinburg, Ohio, a coL.ed man of middle age, of 
whose escape to Ohio tradition, even, gives little ac- 
count, only that he was the j)roperty of a Baptist 
deacon who followed him in close pursuit. Both 
parties upon the ground, matters became marvellously 
lively in the quiet country town. 

S '-iX'^'-''- 




Jerrj* was shifted from place to place, but the 
deacon would in some way get a clue to his where- 
abouts, and another move would be made to thwart 
the pursuer, some one being always ready to ask 
him what he would take for the man ; but it was 
always with him, " I want the nigger, not money." 

Wearied at length with the continued baffling, and 
believing he had found the retreat of his chattel, the 
pious deacon went to Jefferson and secured the ser- 
vice of Sheriff Loom is to make an arrest. The twain 
came upon him just before day-break, but not to 
catch him napping. He was up and off just in time 
to elude their grasp but not until they caught a 
glimpse of him making across the fields in the direc- 
tion of Eliphalet Austin's, who lived near where 
Grand River Institute now stands. 

Rapping at the door, Jerry was admitted by Mr. 
Austin, who was just in the act of dressing himself. 
Reading in the excited manner of the fugitive the 
state of the case, Mr. Austin pointed under the 
family bed where his wife still lay. Jerry took the 
hint, and in a moment was hugging the wall in the 
darkest corner under the bed. Mr. Austin quietly 
closed the bed-room door, started a fire, and was at 
the well drawing a pail of water when the pursuers 
came up. 

" Have you seen my nigger this morning ? " 
queried the Deacon. 

'*It is pretty early to see an object so dark as R 
colored man, if that is what you are inquiring about," 
was the response. 

ti k 

1 1 


nt«M|M li' 

h HI* 

•I I' 




"Well, early as it is, we have seen him, and be- 
lieve he is secreted in your house." 

"Oh, you do, do you? Well, gentlemen, you 
have the fullest liberty to search my premises and 
satisfy yourselves," and, whilst the sheriff kept watch 
without, Mr. Austin furnished the Southerner the 
most abundant opportunity within. Candle in 
hand he led the way to the cellar, then to the garret. 
The children's bed-rooms and the closets of the 
chamber, the parlor, spare bed-room und pantry be- 
low were all carefully examined, but no Jerry was 
found, and the Deacon apologetically remarked : 
" I beg your pardon, Mr. Austin, for this intrusion, 
and for the injustice I did you in supposing you 
were harboring my slave." 

" W^hat," said Mr. Austin, who was also a pious 
man and a licentiate minister, I hope you are not 
through looking yet." 

" Why, I have been all over the house already." 

" O no, you have not been in my wife's bed-room 
yet," said he rather sarcastically. "Go in. Deacon. 
Wife is not up yet ; you may find your ' nigger ' 
with her." 

Dropping his head in very shame, the Deacon ex- 
cused himself, and going out, with the sheriff rode 

As soon as they were well out of sight, Jerry was 
taken to the woods and hidden in an old sugar 
house, where he remained for some days. Mean- 
while time and perplexity began to soften the Deacon, 




and he finally concluded that three hundred and 
fifty dollars ($350) in hand would be worth more 
than " a nigger on foot," which was raised and paid 
over, the original subscription being now in the 
liands of the writer. 

The money paid over and the freedom papers 
made out, the Deacon had no difficulty in obtaining 
an interview with Jerry, a meeting very satisfactory 
to the latter personage, now that he could meet" 01' 
Massa on perfec' 'quality as gemen." 

There were two ihings connected with this case 
which the sturdy old Austinburgers always regretted. 
The one was that as the work of purchase was com- 
pleted late Saturday afternoon, the Deacon accepted 
the proffered hospitality of Mr. Austin for the Sab- 
bath, and with him attended church in the old his- 
toric " meeting house " at the Center, where the Rev. 
Henry Cowles dispensed the gospel in the form of a 
red-hot anti-slavery sermon, to which the Deacon 
listened with great expressed satisfaction if not profit. 
During the evening service, some unprincipaled per- 
sons shaved his horse's main and tail, which, when 
known, led several of the first citizens of the town to 
save its reputation and show their appreciation of 
the gentlemanly qualities of their visitor, by giving 
him in exchange ft>r his disfigured horse one equally 
good, thus sending him back to Dixie with a high 
regard for their honesty, as well as sincerity. 

The other was, Jerry, once a free man, went to 
Conneaut and established himself as a barber, but 

'•"■•■.'•n,| lit 




' i«wtMMlV< 







unable to bear prosperity, he soon fell into habits of 
drinking and dissipation, thus rendering worthless 
the investment philanthropy and generosity had 
made in him. 

The following is the subscription referred to above, 
together with the names of donors and the amount 
given so far as they can be deciphered : 

We whose names are hereto affixed, promise to pay to Eli- 
phalet Austin the sums put to our names, for the purpose of 
liberating from slavery a colored man u hose master is sup- 
posed to be in pursuit, and offers to free him for three hun- 
dred and fifty dollars. 

Austinburg, July 23, 1834. 

Eliphalet & Aaron E Austin. I50. 
J. Austin, $40.00. 

J. S. Mills, I2.00. 
A. A. Barr, |i.oo. 
G. W. St. John, $25.00. 
Luman Whiting, $2.00. 
I. Hendry, 15.00. 
Amos Fisk, I5.00. 
Daniel Hubbard, |i.oo. 
Mr. Sawtell, $2.00. 
L. M. Austin, $5.00. 
Dr. A. Hawley, $2.00. 
Ward, I5.00. 
Jefferson, $20.00. 

Orestes K. Hawley, $50. 
L. Bissell, $20.00. 
T. H. Wells, $3 00. 
Harvey Ladd, Jr., $2.00. 
James Sillak, $3.00 
Benjamin Whiting, $1.00. 
Giddings & Wade, $10. 
Russell Clark, $2.00. 
Henry Harris, $1.00. 
E. Austin, Jr., $15.00. 
Ros. Austin, $5.00. 
W. Webb, Jr , $5 00. 
Henry, $5 00. 
A Friend, 50 cents. 

The $20.00 from Jefferson was a kind of religious 


Aj)ropoH the deliberation of Mr. Austin, there 
comes an incident from southern Ohio illustrating 



how cool a woman may be in case of emergency. A 
slave named Zach had escaped from Virginia and 
was resting and recuperating himself in the family 
of a benevolent man in one of the southern counties 
previously to pursuing his onward course, when one 
evening the house was surrounded by his owner and 
a number of other men, and the right of searching 
the premises demanded. The husband was much 
agitated and appealed to his wife to know what was 
to be done. 

" Why," said she, " let them in, and search the 
lower part of the house first, and leave Zack to me." 

" But I tell you, wife, the man can't be got off 
without being caught." 

*' Don't I know that? Do as I say." 

The husband took her advice, and whilst he was 
leading a searching party through the cellar and 
lower rooms of the house, she placed the fugitive 
carefully between the feather and straw ticks of the 
family bed, and by the time the posse reached the 
room she was composedly in "bed as though nothing 
unusual was transpiring. The result was that the 
search proved a bootless one, and the whole party 
left, believing they had been misdirected \>y some 
one bent on deceiving them. 






;: ""I 


'III If 


I Bill 



FIFTY years ago there lived in Caldwell County, 
Kentucky, a well-to-do individual named Wil- 
son. He owned a large estate, to which was attached 
numerous slaves. Such was the character of the 
master thai bondage sat lightly upon them. Provi- 
dent and indulgent, Mr. Wilson allowed his people 
to do largely as they chose. To them the words of 
the old plantation song, 

** Hang up de shubel and de hoe.'' 
had much of reality. 

Strangers came and went among them freely ; 
they heard much of the ways of escape northward , 
of which many from plantations surrounding them 
availed themselves, but the bonds of affection rvere 
so strong between Mr. Wilson and his people that no 
effort was ever made on the part of the latter to es- 
cape. But things were not always to remain thus. 
In 1853, Mr. Wilson sickened and died, a circum- 
stance which brought not only grief but consterna- 
tion to his " i)eople." for they soon learned they were 
to be divided among the heirs. Jack and Nannie, a 
brother and sister who had grown up on the estate 
tenderly attached to each other and to their old 


llf iiiii 

, m 




<Ht't ; 





master, fell to the lot of a drunken and licentious 
man named Watson, who took them to his farm in 
Da vies County, not far from the Ohio River. Here, 
as common field hands, they were brutally treated, 
and soon began to plan means of escape. Before 
these were consummated the old cook died, and 
Nannie, who was of attractive form and manners, 
was taken from the field to fill her place. This only 
added to the degradation of her condition, for she 
was now continually called upon to repel the lecher- 
ous advances of her brutal master. As a punishment 
for this she was at length placed in close confine- 
ment from which her brother succeeded in freeing 
her. They set out at once for the river, hoping to 
escape, but were soon overtaken, brought back and 
so cruelly whipped by Watson, that Nannie soon 
died from the effects. 

The sight of his lacerated, dying sister, the only 
tie that bound him to earth, continually haunted 
Jack, i«.rid he vowed escape, and vengeance if it were 
l)08sible. His plans were carefully laid. In per- 
ambulating the numerous swamps in the neighbor- 
hood whose outlets led to the river, he had discovered 
a hollow tree broken off" some twenty feet above the 
surrounding water. By climbing an adjacent sap- 
pling he discovered that the hollow within the stub 
would furnish a secure and comfortable retreat, 
should necessity require. By divers acts of planta- 
tion civility he had gained the confidence of " Uncle 
Jake " and " Aunt Mary," an old couple who- 

'""i''i«il If! 

'imiiMM it> 

" 'iiiii / 







flympathized deeply with him, and promised him any 
aid in their power, provided it was such as " Massa'U 
neber know." All Jack asked was that in case he 
disappeared, they should set the third night after his 
disappearance something to eat on a shelf where he 
could reach it, and every fourth night thereafter until 
it should, for two successive times, be untaken. He 
also gave them in keeping a package of cayenne 
pepper to be olaced with the edibles. In his visit& 
to the river he had noted* the fastenings of the skififs, 
and had provided himself with both a file and an 
iron bar which would serve the double purpose as a 
means of defense and for drawing a staple. These 
he carefully secreted in his prospective retreat, wait- 
ing only an opportunity to occupy it. 

Such an opportunity was not long in presenting 
itself, for one night the master came home late from 
a drunken revel, and found Jack awaiting him as 
ordered. Becoming enraged at some supposed act of 
disobedience, he flew at Jack with an open knife. 
The hour of vengeance had come. Seizing a hoe, 
with a single stroke Jack felled him to the ground, a 
lifeless form. A moment only he waited to view 
the cjaping wound — to compare it with poor Nan — 
then gathering up a few things that he could, he was 
off with the fleetness of a deer. Passing two or 
three miles down the country, he entered the outlet 
of the swamp, and after passing down it for some 
distance, keeping so near the shore as to make his 
tracks observable, he struck in, directly reversing his 



footsteps, and before the dawn was safely ensconsed 
in his selected tower. 

Morning came and with it the knowledge of Wat- 
son's death. The cause was easily divined — there 
was the bloody hoe, and Jack, who was left to wait 
his coming, was gone. Blood homids and fierce 
men were scon upon his trail. His course was 
easily traced to the brook, and his descending foot- 
steps discerned, but no trace of him could be dis- 
covered beyond that. The greater part thought he 
had reached the river, and escaped to the Indiana 
shore by swimming, at which he was an expert, or 
had been drowned in the attempt. Others believed 
his footsteps only a decoy and searched all the ad- 
jacent swamps, sometimes passing very near him, but 
all in vain. FUming posters, advertising him, were 
sent broadcast, and slave-catchers on both sides of 
the river were on the alert. 

On the second day a great concourse assembled at 
Watson's funeral. There were many conjectures, 
and much argument, and loud Swearing about the 
'* nigger " who had done tlie deed, and as a means of 
intimidating the weeping — none mere so than Uncle 
Jake and Aunt Mar}^ — chattels gathered around, 
terrible things were promised Jack should he be 

The services over, tho crowd dispersed, and the 
next morning all hands were set to work as usual. 
At night when all was quiet, Aunt Mary, whose cabin 
was the farthest of any from the " mansion," placed 


;;;;m w 

"'litWlllt »< 








!, 1 







■r1- r!-i 

. , .l.v. 1 

a liberal ration of hoe cake and bacon, together with 
the pepper, upon the designated shelf, and betook 
herself to the side of Uncle Jake who was already 
resting his weary limbs in the land of forgetfulness. 
Shortly after midnight a hand was thrust cautiously 
through the open window, the packages were softly 
lifted, a little pepper was deftly sifted in retreating 
footsteps, and in a short time Jack was safe again in 
his water-shut abode, and when old uncle and auntie 
were talking of the "wun'ful ang'l " that had visited 
the house that night, Jack was quietly enjoying a 
morning nap. 

Several weeks passed, the excitement about Wat- 
son had measurably died away, two successive de- 
positions of provisions had been left untouched and 
the good old couple kne>v " Dat de angel was feedin' 
Jack no moa', like de rabens fed ol' ' Lijer." They 
were sure, " Jack am safe." 

Taking his appliances, Jack had descended the 
outlet some distance one starlight night, and then 
striking across the country, had reached the river 
just below the little village he had been accustomed 
to visit before the death of his sister. The finding 
of a skiff and the wrenching away of the fastening 
occupied but a short time and at daylight he was 
safely secreted in an Indiana forest. Knowledge 
previously gained enabled him soon to put himself 
in charge of an underground official, but instead of 
, making direct for Canada he shipped for the Quaker 
settlement near Salem, Ohio, of which he had heard 


.' ffl 

^ ■'■' 1*. 



much from a fruit tree dealer before the death of 
Mr. Wilson, and ultimately, in the quaint home of 
Edward Bonsall found a secure asylum, and in his 
nurseries desirable employment, so far from his 
former home that little disturbed his mind except 
the frequent recurring remembrances of his slain 
master with the cruelly lacerated form of his sister 
ever rising in justification of the summary punish- 
ment that had been inflicted upon him. 


In the autumn of 1856, Jack went with Mr. Bon- 
sall to Pittsburgh. Whilst walking along the street, 
he met face to face a half-brother of his late master. 
At first sight he thought it an apparition and turned 
and ran rapidly away, but not until he was himself 
recognized. So dextrous had been his motions that 
he eluded the pursuit immediately instituted and 
was soon among the hills beyond the city limits. 

Hand bills minutely describing him were again 
widely circulated, particularly along the belt of 
country bordering the Pittsburgh and Erie canal, as it 
was argued he would try and make his escape by that 
route to Canada, and all the appliances of an odious 
law were called into requisition to secure his appre- 


Rap, rap, rap, came a knuckle against the door 
of Thomas Douglass, of Warren, Ohio, in the silent 

ii'iiWiKl til 

llHliHill If. 

mm I 





fiU i ! 1 



illill'i; i; 




■i ii 

hours of the night. Such occurrences were not fre- 
quent of late at the home of the honest Englishman 
whose love of justice and humanity had risen above 
all fear of the pains and penalties of an unrighteous 
law. Hastily dressing himself, he inquired, "Who 



" or Diligence," a name recognized at once by Mr. 
Douglass as the appelation of a colored conductor 
from Youngstown. 

'' Hall right ; wat's aboard ? " 
''Subjec', Massa Douglass, and hard pressed, too." 
"'Ard pressed his 'e? Well, come in." 
The door was opened, a brief explanation followed, 
and Jack Watson and " Old Diligence " were con- 
signed to a good bed for the night. In the morning 
his faithful guide, who had himself escaped from 
bondage many years before gave Jack some money, 
a supply of which he always had in hand, and left 
him with the emphatic assurance, " Massa Douglass 
am a true man." But Jack was hard to be assured, 
and when seated at breakfast with the master ma- 
chinist's hands, he trembled like an aspon. 

Three gentlemen, Levi Sutlifi", John Hutchins and 
John M. Stull had been early summoned to devise 
the best means for forwarding Jack safely. The two 
former of these had been long experienced operators; 
the latter was rather a novice at the business. A few 
years previously, an ambitious young man, he had 
gone south as a teacher, thinking little and caring 
less about the "peculiar institution." He had been 



in Kentucky but a short time when a slave auction 
was advertised and his Buckeye inquisitivenesa 
prompted him to witness it. Two or three children 
were struck off and then the mother, a well formed, 
good-looking octaroon, was put u{)on the block. 

" Now, gentlemen," said the auctioneer, a hard- 
shelled Baptist preacher, " I offer you a valuable 
piece of property. She's a good cook ; can make 
clothes, or handle a hoe as well as a man. She's a 
healthy woman, gentlemen, an more'n that, she's a 
Christian. Gentlemen, she's a member of my own 

Tne buyers crowded around. They examined 
her teeth, her hands, her feet, her limbs as though 
she had been a horse on sale. 

Our spectator began to feel himself getting white 
in the face, and swear words were rising in his 
tiiroat, and he beat a hasty retreat. — John was under 

A few mornings after our young teacher was 
wakened by the sound of heavy blows and cries of 
pain proceeding from another part of the hotel. 
That evening when Harry, the boy appointed his 
special waiter, came to his room, Mr. StuU cautiously 
inquired who had been punished in the morning. 

"Dat was me Massa. De oF boss gib'd me a 

'' What was the trouble, Harry, and what is a 

" Why Lor' breas you, IMassa, dis chile slep' jus' a 










minit too long, an' de ol' boss cum'd wid his ' buck/ 
a board wid a short han'l and full ob holes, an' he 
bent Harry ober, like for to spank a chil', an' o Lor' 
how he struck." (Then lowering his voice,) " Say, 
Massa Stull, can you tell de Norf star ? " 

The boy had been all care, attention and manli- 
ness. The soul of the teacher was fully aroused. — 
Stull was converted. 

Waiting the coming of these gentlemen. Jack had 
gone into the back yard, and when they arrived he 
was nowhere to be found. A prolonged search failed 
to reveal his whereabouts, and when at length night 
fell kind Mrs. Douglass placed an ample plate of 
provisions in the back kitchen and continued it for 
several weeks, hoping he might return, but no angel 
ever spirited a particle of it away. 


Years ago, even before Wendell Phillips, Abbey 
Kelley and others of their school ))egan to hurl their 
bitter anathemas at the institution of slavery, there 
lived upon a far-reaching Virginia j)lantation in the 
valley of the James a man who had taken a truly 
comprehensive and patriotic view of the institution 
that was blighting the reputation of his state, as well 
as impoverishing her soil. He had inherited his 
fine estate, encumbered by a large number of slaves, 
and his soul revolted at the idea of holding them in 
bondage. A man of fine physique, commanding 
mien and superior intellectual endowments, John 




Young could not brook the idea of eating bread that 
Bavorea of the sweat of another's brow, and the 
thought of living amid the withering, blighting 
scenes of slave labor and slave traffic was not at all 
congenial to his tastes. Casting about, he soon found 
a purchaser for his broad acres. Before disposing of 
his plantation, however, he made a trip into western 
Pennsylvania, and in Mercer county, on the rich 
bottoms of Indian run, made purchase of an exten- 
sive tract of valuable land. Returning to the Old 
Diminion, he at once concluded the sale of his estate, 
and vowed his intention of going North. 

His friends were amazed at the idea of his becom- 
ing a " Pennymite" farmer, and his people were thrown 
into consternation, as they expected soon to be ex- 
posed on the auction block. The sallies of one class 
he easily parried ; the fear of the other he quickly 
allayed by calliiig them together and presenting them 
with 'Veedom pai)er8. There was a moment of 
silence of blank astonishment, and then arose shouts, 
and crit , and hallelujahs to God, amid laughter and 
tears, for this wonderful deliverance. 

When the excitement had somewhat subsided the 
late master revealed to them the fact that he was go- 
ing north where it was re8})ectable for a white man 
to labor, and if any of them should ever come hia 
way they would see him chopping his own wood and 
hoeing his own com, and that they were now free to 
go where tliey chose, only they must see they did 
not lose their papers. 


mm* 1* 



II' 3 



ii!ii m 



" Bress de good Lor', Massa, we'll go wid you to 
dat new plaiitashun and be spect'ble too, and make 
light work for ol' Massa." 

Though foreign to the purpose of Mr. Young, he 
yielded to the importunity of those he had mauu- 
mitted, and soon there appeared on the Pennsyl- 
vania purchase a spacious residence, built rather in 
the Virginia style, and around it were grouped numer- 
ous cabins, occui)ied by the sable colony that had 
followed the Caucassian proprietor. The family 
equipage was brought along, and Alexander John- 
son always persisted in being Massa's coachman and 
driving him in state. 

The farm improved rapidty under the guidance of 
intelligence, aided by paid labor, and John Young's 
house soon became known as a hospitable home, and 
to none more so than to the fugitive from bondage, 
for he early became an influential agent on the great 
thoroughfare to Canada. 

Securing the aid of a few neighbors and friends, 
rather as a matter of compliment than otherwise, 
Mr. Young had erected, at a convenient site, a nice 
country chapel, now a Methodist church in which the 
writer has been privileged to speak, and here the {)eople 
of the neighborhood, white and black, met for worship. 

The Sabbath evening service in this little church 
had closed and the speaker, J. W. Loguen, an elo- 
quent man, though a former fugitive from slavery, 
but at that time pastor of a Baptist church in Syra- 
cuse, N. Y., and la 




;ly engaged 





transit business, sat conversing with Mr. Young, in 
the home of the latter gentleman, when Uncle 'Lee, 
as the old coachman was familiarly called, entered 
and excitedly exclaimed, " Mass Young, him am 
come, him am come." 

" Who has come, Alec ? " queried the host kindly. 

"Wh, Massa, dat runaway wot de han' vill tell 
bout, an' him am fearfu' scar' an' no mistake, fo' he 
say de catchers am arter him shua." 

"Bring him in, Alec," said Mr. Young, and in a 
moment more there was ushered into the room a 
tall, muscular colored man, bearing evident traces of 
white blood and answering fully the description of 
Jack Watson. His story, other than what we have 
already learned, was that at Warren, being suspicious 
of so many white men, he had gone out of the back 
yard of Mr. Douglass and a short distance along the 
canal and secreted himself until night in an old 
ware-house, still well remembered as bearing the in- 
scription, " Forwarding and Commission. M. B. 
Taylor & Co." In the evening he had struck out for 
Indian Run, of which Old Diligence had told him. 
He had traveled all the night, but not being able to 
reach his destination, had lain secreted during the 
day, and now hungry and fearful he appealed to Mr. 
Young for food and protection, both of which were 
readily accorded. 

After the cravings of appetite had been satisfied, a 
conference was held, and it was decided that Jack 
should try and make Syracuse, after which Mr. 

'm,i rill 

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Loguen would assure both safety and emplo3niient. 
Owing to the well-known character of Mr. Young 
and his attaches, and unmistakable evidences of 
close pursuit that had preceded Jack's coming, it 
was further determined to forward him at once to 
" Safe Haven." In accordance with this decision the 
family carriage, an imposing piece of "rolling stock," 
soon stood at the door with 'Lee consequentially 
seated upon the box. A moment later, Jack, Mr. 
Loguen, and stalwart John Young emerged from the 
mansion, and as they took their seats in the carriage? 
Mr. Young said: "Now, Alec, look well to your 
lines and remember the ' Haven ' is to be made be- 
fore daylight." 

"Yes, Massa, dis ol' chile keep an eye to de lines, 
de road, an' anyting 'spicuous, an' rouse up ol' 
missus long afor' de chicken' 'gin to crow," saying 
which, he gave a gentle chirrup and the carriage 
went rolling away to the northward. 


Whoever was accustomed, a third of a century 
ago, to travel over the road from Warren, ()., to 
Meadville, Pa., will remember a wayside inn, whose 
sign bore in German character the euphonious name 
of " Aughfeultwangher House." The house itself, 
like its name, was of German origin, a genuine ex- 
ample of a Dutch farm house, bespeaking both com- 
fort and thrift. The occupants were of the same 
name as the house, the proprietor being an honent,. 



quiet, well-meaning man, with no special personality.. 
Not so his better half, however. She was a character 
— a decided personality. Kind and generous, she 
had a temper, which when let loose became a very 
tornado. She was neat and tidy as a housekeeper, 
and unexcelled as a cook. A regular embodiment 
of piety and profanity ; of sympathy and execration ; 
of wit, repartee and scurrilous invective, her very 
ofF-handedness made the house immensely popular 
with drovers and road-men, and it was quoted from 
the prairies of the west to the Quaker City itself; 
and many is the man who has traveled an extra five 
miles to gain the hospitable roof of the " Awful- 
tricker House," as it came to be called by those who 
failed to accomplish the German of it. 

As an illustration of the without and the within 
of the place, a little personal experience is intro- 
duced. At the end of a bleak November day, I 
found myself taking the advice of a friend and mak- 
ing an extra exertion with jaded beast, in order to 
enjoy the hospitality of the " Aughfeultwangher." 
Knowing the reputation of the hostess I greeted her 
with : " Well, Auntie, can you keep a stranger to- 

Looking at me with a qiiizical expression and 
evidently pleased at the appellation used, she re- 
plied : " Dot is von long face to keeps all in von 

" O, well, never mind, I can let a part of it stay in 
the barn." 


■■;; ..M 







\m:. ' 





" Veil, I guess we growds es all in dem house," 
and running to the back door, she called out, " Fater, 
fater, here bist einer mann, unt ein pferd vas Shine- 
ral Shackson rote. Nehms du es dem stolle vilst Ich 
das abend essen for dem manne erhalten." 

Obedient to the summons the host came at once, 
and took the wearied beast, whilst I was ushered 
into the little bar-room, whose well-filled box-stove 
was sending out a genial warmth, and away went 
the sprightly dame to prepare supper, whose savory 
odors soon filled the house. 

Directly the door into the great family kitchen 
opened, and I did not wait for a repitition of the 
hearty " Coome Meister, your supper bist ready." 
Entering, I found the room seated after the German 
style, and was greeted with the sight of a great, open 
fire-place, with its bake-oven and pot-hole attach- 
ment. Upon the table were rich slices of ham, eggs, 
bread, such as only a genuine German woman can 
bake, and other things in abundance. When I was 
seated and the good woman had poured out a cup of 
delicious coffee, she took a chair opposite, and after 
eying me a moment, inquired : 

*' Veil, Meister, var from you come?" 

" From Ohio, auntie." 

" You bist von Yankee, then." 

" No, I'm a Buckeye." 

" Von Puckeye ! vas ish dat, eh? " 

" One born in Ohio." 

" Unt vas your fater ein Sherman? " 



" No, auntie, but my grandfather was." 

"0 your grossfater. Veil, I tot dare vas some 
Shermeny blud ; dot lickt hair und blau eyes zint 
der sign, meister." 

" Well, auntie, 'tis not bad blood, is it." 

" nein. Mein Got, es ist dot best, but das 
Yankee is shust so goot," to which of course I 
assented, with the remark that the two together are 
a little better, thus causing the old lady to laugh 

After a moment's pause, in which there seemed to 
be a studying of what tactics to pursue, she said, 
" Veil, meister, it bist none of my pisness, but vas 
you stoon in das velt ? " 

Wishing to make a fine conquest, I summoned 
what little German I could muster and replied, 
'*Ich bin einer school-meister." 

"Got in himmel! du bist einer schulmeister, O 
Ich vish de kinder vare to house — " 

Just then the host came in, and there was a rapid 
discharge of pure German between them, the outcome 
of which was a passing of a very pleasant evening, 
though the English on the one side and the German 
on the other were both very broken, and when the 
hour for retiring came I was escorted by the old 
couple to what was evidently the best room in the 
house. Approaching the bed the hostess laid back a 
fine feather tick, revealing sheets of snowy whiteness 
overspreading another, and then with a feeling of 
conscious pride exclaimed, " Dot, Her Schulmeister, 

I m 

ill"' * 

'llllll HI' 




iitiii II 






is mine bester bett, unt do canst schlafen on der top, 
• in der mittel or unter das bett, shust as you bleze. 
Guten abent." 

Such was the house, such were the Aughfeult- 
wanghers, with the addition of being Jacksonian 
Democrats of the straightest sect, the least likely 
people, apparently, to have any sympathy with the 
underground work, yet shrewd John Young, ever 
fertile in expedients, had approached this couple, and 
as a result of the conf< iice there was arranged a 
snug little room over and back of the oven with the 
way of entry by the pot-hoie. This room was never 
to be occupied but by one individual, and he was to 
be brought by Mr. Young in person, who was also to 
provide for the taking away. In view of these facts 
he had christened the place " Safe Haven," and its 
existence, outside of the family, was known only to 
himself. Alec and one or two others of his retainers 
and " Mose " Bishop, a tall, slim man, residing at 
Linesville, having a perfect hatred of creeds and 
cant, but an enthusiastic supporter of every cause 
demanding sympathy and justice, and who on ac- 
count of his Jehu style of driving, was known along 
the road as " The Lightning Conductor." 


True to his promise, before the first cock had 
sounded the approaching morn on that late October 
night. Alec reined up at the Aughfeultwangher, and 
Mr. Young, alighting, rapped at the door, and all 




questions being satisfactorily answered, Jack was 
admitted, and the carriage rolled rapidly down to 
the little village at the foot of Conneaut lake, and at 
the hotel breakfast was ordered for men and beasts. 

Having washed themselves, they were waiting the 
progress of culinary processes in the kitchen, mean- 
while regailing themselves by reading the hand-bill 
advertising Jack, which was conspicuously posted in 
the bar-room, when two horsemen, one a constable 
from Mercer county, rode up and also ordered break- 
fast and feed for their horses. 

The constable and Mr. Young readily recognized 
each other, and though no word was pased it was evi- 
dent to each that his business was understood by his 
neighbor, hence the breakfast passed in silence, and 
when his bill was settled, the carriage of the ex- 
Virginian took a homeward direction. 

No sooner was it gone than the constable remarked 
to Boniface, "I have been after that turnout all night. 
When it started there was a passenger in it. answer- 
ing to that bill there." 

" You've been making the old fellow a close call," 
said the landlord, " but you'll find him a hard one 
to handle." 

Yes ; but if I could catch the nigger, the $500 
wouldn't come bad. We have been close on his 
track for several days. We know he was at Young's 

last night but where in the d he is now is the 


" Dropped som&where, liiiely." 






1 1 


r . 





:i > :■ ,:i 




"Yes, dropped. Old Alec was too much for us, 
and we lost the trail. From which direction did 
they come ? " 

" From towards Meadville." 

" Do you know any station that he could have 

"No, unless Aughfeultwaugher's." 

" Awfultricker's ! ha ! ha ! Upon my life that is a 
bright idea. Why the old woman would make even 
Young think the day of judgment had come if he 
were to bring a nigger to her home." 

" So I would have thought once, and so I am dis- 
posed to think now, but I have sometimes thought 
his bland manners have overcome her Democracy 
and that somewhere about the premises there is a 
station ; yet 'tis all guess work with me. I give you 
the information ; if you, gentlemen, can make $500 
out of it, you are welcome to the fee." 

After a short consultation between the constable 
and the stranger, a regular catcher who had under- 
taken to capture Jack, they ordered their horses and 
were off towards the Aughfeultwangher. 


Immediately on receiving Jack into the house, the 
good landlady supplied him with an ample dish of 
provisions and removing the dye tub and other ob- 
structions from the pot-hole pointed him to her bed- 
room for "zingle shentlemens," and when he had 
disappeared, she replaced her pots and kettels, taking 



care to place the dye tub in which the yam for 
family stockings were receiving its finishing tint of 
blue, in the very mouth of the hole. This done she 
went about her morning duties and was thus busily 
engaged when the two horsemen rode up, dismounted 
and came in. After paying the compliments of the 
morning and taking a drink, the constable inquired, 
" Has Mr. Young been here this morning ? " 

" Mister Yoong, vat Yoong you means ? " 

" John Young." 

"Vat, dot Shon Yoong fon town in Merzer 


" ya, er trive up unt vater ees team." 

" Was there anybody with him ? " 

" ya, dot black Alec alvays goes mit him." 

" Did you see anybody get out ? " 

" Nein." 

" And he didn't leave anyone here ? " 

" Veil, shentelmens, dot is is von great kweschon. 
You tinks I have von of tern niggers pout here. 
You shall zee. Now, shentetmens, you looks all 
apout ; you shall shust go in te barn and dru dis 
house shust as you blese. Den you knows if Shon 
Young leaves von black mans here." 

So saying the old lady led them through the barn 
and all parts of the house until the kitchen was 
reached. Here she bade them look into the oven, 
and then that they might peer into the poi-hole she* 
began removing the dye tub, but in so doing was 







i I 

! » 



• %ti«» 

i«M| t 




careful to spill a little of the liquid. As the fumes 
spread through the room the catcher exclaimed as 
they reached his olfactories, '' the d — 1.' 

" Yes, aer toiful, shentelmens, der toiful; you comes 
to mine house as if de Aughfeultwanger wo'dt keep 
ein runavay nigger ; you go dru, you go unter mine 
parn ; you goes indo mine pet rooma ; you climps 
down into mine shamber, unt you goes up indo 
mine seller, and now der toiful ! You peest tswi tarn 
deeps, unt if you no go so gwick as von leetel minit, 
I sets mine tok on you unt er makes you into sau- 
sage meat fore von hour. Pounce! here Pounce, 
here !" and a great house dog came rushing into the 
back door as the two runaway-seekers beat a hasty 
letreat, each catching a glimpse, as he passed out, of 
the huge animal called to act as judgment execu- 
tioner upon them. Though foiled, they were not 
discouraged, but transferred their place of watching 
to other parts. 


Reaching home, Mr. Young immediately wrote 

Mr. Bishop, as follows: — 

" — o 56 — 10 — 28—81. 

Dear , 

Piratical craft square rigged, but our wind was good and 

we Ao/ed the duck. ( ) ' Mine Got, mine Got, mine 

Got for XXX ' Greeley's advice. Day and nigiit ; 

.day and night ; day ami night. With an eye to foxes, let 'er 
slide. Yours, 


tions t 




wavs i 
ber af 
in his i 
great p 
been ki 
the Un 
people i 

in whic! 
he was c 

As th 
the east 
parson a^ 

Mose ? '' 



On its receipt, Mr. Bishop took the necessary precau- 
tions to execute the contents of the letter, and on the 
third night proceeded to carry them out, being not 
unaware of the fact that he was closely watched. 


Two men were standing in their res})ective door- 
ways in the village of Andover, Ohio, on a Novem- 
ber afternoon. The one was a broad-shouldered, 
full-chested man, with a flowing beard, a merry 
twinkle in the eye, a kind of devil-me-care negligence 
in his appearance, with a physique that betokened 
great power and endurance. This man had long 
been known technically as " Thribble X " of station 
" 1001," at Gustavus, Ohio, from which place he had 
migrated to Andover to proclaim the principles of 
the Universalist faith, and was known among his 
people as Elder Shipman, or more familiarly, "Uncle 

The other gentleman was of slimmer build, sandy 
complexion, thoughtful mien, and the very manner 
in which he handled his pipe would guarantee that 
he was of "Hinglish stock." 

As they thus stood, a buggy came driving from 
the east at break-neck speed, and dashing up to the 
parsonage the driver exchvimed, " Elder, can you do 
anything for this duck, for they're after us hottei n 

" Don't you know there is no such })lace as that, 
Muse?'' was the calm reply. 

' ''mi 11 


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" Well, well, I've no time to discuss theological 
matters now ; all 1 know is if there is no such place, 
there ought to be a new creation at once for tne sake 
of two fellows that must already be this side oi the 

''So near as that? S'^t him out." 

Immediately the colored man was bidden to 
alight, and whilst Le and the elder struck out for the 
woods a short distance to the south >v est, the buggy 
was turned and driven rapidly toward Richmond. 

Scarcely was it out of si^ at, when two horsemen 
came galloping into town, and ridinj.' up to our Eng- 
lish friend, who had been an interested spectator of 
the little scene just described and was wont to ex- 
press his satisfaction of English laws by quoting, 

"Slaves can not breathe in Highland ; if there lungs 
Received 'er hair, that moment they are free ; " 

and inquired, " Stranger, did you see a buggy drive 
into town from the east a short time ago with two 
men in it?" 

" Hi 'ave, gentlemen." 

" Was one of them black ? " 

" 'E was, gentlemen." 

" Should you think the other was the man they 
call Mose Bishop? " 

" Hi should, gentlemen." 

" Which way did he drive ? " 

" To the north, gentlemen." 

"Thank you, sir, and good day." 

"Good day, gentlemen." 

t I 





le sake 

ot the 

den to 
for the 
ur Eng- 
itator of 
t to ex- 


V drive 
vith two 

Clapping spurs to their horses, the riders were 
away with a bound, under the inspiration of the 
first genuine cry of" On to Richmond," 

Reaching the proper point, Bishop turned east- 
ward and dashed down through Padan-aram, much 
to ths surprise of the denizens of that sequestered 
community, whilst his pursuers swept on to the 
Center, and on inquiry at the village store, were 
blandly informed by the proprietor, Mr. Heath, that 
there had been no buggy at all in the place that day. 
Had Mose and the elder heard the refined language 
that then made the very atmosphere about Rich- 
mond blue, they would both have been converts to 
the orthodox doctrine of sulphuric cleansing. 


Watching ths departure of the others, Shipman 
and his charge crossed the road to the eastward, and 
were soon threading the woodlands bordering the 
Shenango, and about midnight souglit quarters at a 
friend's of the elder, not far from Linesville. Arm- 
ing themselves with heavy walking sticks, just be- 
fore evening of the next day they set out for Albion. 
They had not proceeded far before they saw they 
were to encounter four sinigter-looking fellows. 
"Now, Jack," said the elder, " You have endured too 
much to be taken back. I do not wish to pay a 
thousand dollars fine nor go to prison for your sake. 
We may have to use these canes. Do you under- 








(It I* 











" Yes, Massa, you can trus' dis Jack." 

A call to halt was answered by so vigorous a 
charge and such effective use of the walking sticks 
that two of the challengers soon lay upon the ground 
and the others beat a hasty retreat. Taking advan- 
tage of circumstances the little train switched, and 
under the pressure of a full head of steam reached 
the " Old Tannery " station near Albion before day- 

The conductor was now on strange ground, but 
knowing there was an agent in the vicinity named 
Low, he hunted him up and received such informa- 
tion as enabled them to make a little clump of hem- 
locks on the bank of a ravine not far from the 
residence of Elijah Drury, of Girard, the following 

Farmer Drury was a stalwart, standing little less 
than six feet in height, always ready for any good 
word and work, and had ))een for many years en- 
gaged in the iransportaiion business. Always wary, 
however, he was not to be deceived when, in the 
morning, our bewhiakered conauctor presented him- 
self and asked for something to eat. 

" yes," said Mr. Drury, " I can always furnish a 
man, though a stranger, something with which to 
satisfy hunger." 

"But I want aomeuiing also f^.r ^ friend 

" A friend ! What do yo" mean ^' ' ' 

" I mean that I have a fnend dowi. yonder in the 
thicket, who is both weary and hungry ' 






" Mister, do you know what I think?" 

" I am not a prophet, sir." 

" Well, it is my opinion that you are a horse 

" Will you come down and see the last nag I 
trotted off? " 

Together the two men went down to the little 
thicket, and there the Elder not only exhibited the 
passenger, but to remove all suspicions, showed him 
the scars that indicated the floggings to which the 
slave had been subjected, a sight which Mr. Drury 
often afterwards said came very near making him 
swea! outright. Thus commenced a friendship be- 
tween the two men long continued rnd fraught with 
many acts attesting the generous nature of both. 


When evening came, time being precious, our con- 
ductor drew the reins c or Mr. Drury s best road- 
sters, and about midnight deposited his passenger at 
the doorway of an old-fashioned house, with gable 
to the street, wing projecting northward, and a larga 
elm tree nearly in front, standing on Federal Hill, 
in what is now South Erie, and for the first time 
XXX greeted officially a most redoubtable Keystone 
agent, known as the '' Doctor," in those days one of 
Erie's well-known characters. He had gained some 
knowledge of herbs and roots, which he learned to 
apply medicinally, thus acquiring his appellation, 
\vhich he wore with great satisfaction, soon coming 

■y, w. 

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II l« 

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to look upon all mere " book doctors " in great con- 
tempt. He was accustomed to drive about town 
with an old brown horse attached to a kind of carry- 
all vehicle ; always took his whisky straight and in 
fulf allopathic doses, though he affected to despise 
the practice generally, and prided himself on being 
the most reliable agent in Erie county. 

Into the Doctor's piivate sanctum Jack was at once 
admitted, and properly cared for for a number of 
days, until measurably recuperated from his weeks 
of incessant vigil and solicitude, when he was taken 
in charge by Thomas Elliott, Esq., of Harborcreek, 
and conveyed to Wesleyville, four miles east of the 
city. Here, inasmuch as fresh news was obtained of 
his pursuers, it was thought best to secrete him anew, 
and he was therefore deposited in Station " Sanctum 
Sanctorum " — the garret of the Methodist Church. 

Whoever passes through the village on the " Buf- 
falo Road," fails not to notice this unpretentious 
little brick structure standing by the wayside. Like 
most churches built so long ago, it has undergone 
various remodelings. The " battlements " have been 
taken off; doors and windows have shifted places, 
but within it is little changed ; the seating below and 
the three-sided gallery remaining much as of old. 

From the time of its first dedication onward, it has 
been the scene of many a revival, and for years it 
W1? the '' horn of the altar " upon which the panting 
fugitive laid his hand, and was safe, for its use as a 
" station ' was known only to a " selected few." 

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led of 
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At the time we speak of, a protracted meeting had 
already been begun, for the bleakness of winter had 
early set in. The services were conducted by Rev. 
Jas. Gilfillin, a sterling old Scotchman, who had re- 
ceived a large part of his training in the collieries of 
his native land, and before the mast as ; sailor on 
the high seas, assisted by Rev. William Gheer, a. 
young man of timidity and all gentility of manner. 
The interest was most marked, and crowds came 
nightly to listen, to weep, to become penitents, not 
only from up and down the "road," but from Gospel 
Hill, and far beyond, bringing even grand old father 
and mother Weed, who had assisted at the 
formation of the society over thirty years before^ 
from away up in the " beech woods," and with them 
Nehemiah Beers, an exhorter, particularly felicitious 
in the construction of unheard-of words and expres- 

Under such circumstances Jack was deposited, 
early one morning, in his rude apartment, measur- 
ably warmed by the pipe which came up from the 
great box-stove below, and cautioned that he must 
keep particularly quiet during the devotional exer- 
cises below. Here he remained for several days, 
listening to the praises of new-born souls and the 
hosannas of the older brethren during meeting hours, 
and then descending and making himself comfort- 
able in the well-warmed room when all was quiet 
;\nd safe. Indeed, so well did he play his part as 
lire-tender, that the Chambers boys, who chopped 


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("^ 'it' 

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the wood, which was hauled to the church " sled- 
length " by the brethren, emphatically declared, as 
they wondered at the marvellous disappearance of 
fuel, " It takes a power of wood to run a red-hot re- 
vival, and we shall be glad when the meeting 
closes," and it required no little effort on the part of 
their father, the main source of supply, to induce 
them to persevere in their "labor of love." 

Thus matters passed until Sunday evening came, 
when the interest of the meeting seemed to culmi- 
nate in a Pentecostal shower. The Rev. James Sulli- 
van, then a young man, preached a sermon of great 
eloquence and power, encouraged by many a hearty 
Amen from Father Weed and the older brethren, 
and the responsive hallelujahs of hale old Sister 
Weed and the other " Mothers in Israel." The ser- 
mon ended, men clapped their hands in ecstatic 
rapture, and struck up that grand old revival hymn, 

" Come ye sinners, poor and needy," 
whilst the old pastor rose in his place, and earnestly 
exhorted sinners to come to the " mourner's bench " 
and find pardon and peace, until the feeling of ex- 
citement burst forth in one simultaneous, " Amen, 
hallelujah to God!" 

The Spirit had reached the garret, and in the fer- 
vor of excitement Jack forgot himself, and, " Amen, 
hallelujah to God ! " came back in responsive echo, 
sufficiently loud enough to attract the attention of 
those in the gallery, who looked at each other in 
startled amazement. 

11. II I,, ,■ 
'lit' ;S > 




Down on his knees went Brother Beers, and in the 
midst of an impassioned prayer, exclaimed : " ! 
Lord-ah, come down to night-ah, and rim-wrack and 
center-shake the work of tl"ve devil-ah." 

Influenced more hy the Spirit than the phrase- 
ology of the prayer, there went up from the worship- 
l)ing throng a hearty " Amen, and Amen ! " 

" Amen, and Amen ! " came down from above, 
only to increase the astonishment of the crowded 
gallery, most there believing that an angel hovered 
over them. As if in perfect accord with the sur- 
roundings, Parson Gheer struck up, 

*' Behold the Savior of mankind," 

without waiting for 

" Nailed to the rugged cross," 

the sentorian voice of the old pastor rang out, " Yes, 
He comes ! He comes ! " 

"Yes, He comes! He comes!" shouted the em- 
bodied seraph in the garret, in tones sufficiently 
loud to catch the ear of the sexton, who immediately 
mounted aloft, as ho often did to adjust the stove- 
pipe, and though the meeting continued for an hour 
longer, there were no farther angelic demonstrations, 
yet some in the gallery long persisted that they had 
that night been permitted to listen to seraphic 

Before daylight Jack was shipped by way of Col. 
Moorhead's and North East, to Conductor Nutting, 
at State Line, and by him to Syracuse, where he 

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safely arrived and remained until the breaking out 
of the war, when he went south and rendered valu- 
able service to the Union cause, in a way that may 
be told in due time. 






YEARS ago, before the permanent organization of 
the Undeigroimd Railroad, when the escape 
of fugitives was largely a haphazard matter, there 
lived on the sacred soil of Virginia, back a few miles 
from Wheeling, a pleasant, companionable man, 
owning a number of slaves, among them one known 
as "Uncle Jake," the happy husband of an exem- 
plary wife, who had borne him several children, 
some of whom they had seen grow to manhood and 
womanhood, while others still remained with them 
in the cabin. 

Uncle Jake was an expert mason, and brought his 
master large wages. The latter, in the generosity of 
his heart, had stipulated that a certain per cent, of 
these should be credited up to Jake for the purchase 
of the freedom of himself and wife. When he turned 
his fifty-ninth birthday the sum agreed upon was 
nearly reached, and the faithful man went out to a 
job in Wheeling, with the full assurance that on his 
sixtieth anniversary he and his hale old wife should 
go forth to the enjoyment of the blessings of free 






i«n» I 



people. Thus incited, his trowel was nimbly han- 
dled as the days fle^V■ by. 

A little improvident and immethodical in his busi- 
ness, the master had contracted large obligations, 
which he was unable to meet; his paper matured; 
his creditors swooped down upon him simultane- 
ously, and in a single day he was stripped of every- 
thing. His slaves, with the exception of Uncle Jal^e, 
who was purchased at a round figure by a neighbor 
who had long covittd him, were sold to a southern 
trader, and on Saturday morning, chained into sepa- 
rate coffles, the unhappy wife and mother, with her 
children, forming one by themselves, whilst the 
father, indulgint^ in pleasant day-dreams of the fu- 
ture, was busily plying his craft in one part of the 
town, were driven through another, down to the 
river, and put on board a steamer for New Orleans. 

Evening came, and the week's work ended. Uncle 
Jake started with c. light heart homeward. When 
he reached the neighborhood sometime after night- 
fall, he was ai)prised by a friend on the look-out for 
him, of the fate of the master — of himself and loved 
ones. Had a thunderbolt fallen at his feet, he could 
not have been more shocked. Learning, also, that 
his new master, a tyrannical man, was waiting his 
coming, he turned aside to give vent to his grief. 
Had he been sc>ld with tlie family he could have en- 
dured it, for then there might have been a chance of 
occasional meeting ; indeed, he and his wife might 
have been sold to the same plantation ; but now they 



were gone — separated forever. Under the blue dome 
of heaven, with the myriad stars looking down upon 
him, he wept — wept as only a man can weep under 
such circumstances — until the reaction came, when a 
lion-like manhood asserted itself in the laconic ex- 
pression, " Not one more stroke in slavery." 

Arising with the clear-cut resolution to obtain his 
freedom or perish in the attempt, he proceeded 
stealthily to his cabin, armed himself with a large 
butcher knife and a heavy walking stick, and taking 
one last look at objects, though humble, still dear to 
him, he set ou with elastic step towards the river. 
About one-half the distance had been gone over, 
when he perceived himself pursued. He turned 
aside, hoping to secrete himself, but in vain ; he had 
been sighted, and was summoned to surrender. 

To the challenge, he responded : " I am yours if 
you can take me." 

The two men, his new master and an attendant, 
dismounted and hitched their horses, thinking the 
conquest of the "cowardly nigger" would l^e an 
easy matter. But not so. The man who for nearly 
three-score years had manifested only the meakness 
of a child, was now endowed with the spirit and 
prowess of a giant. A well-aiuicd blow of the 
bludgeon laid his master a quivering corpse at his 
feet, and several well-directed strokes of the butcher 
knife sent thu other covered with ghastly, bleeding 
wounds, fainting to the roadside. 

Mounting the fleetest horse, Jake made his way 

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rapidly to the river, and plunging in soon found 
himself landed safely on the Ohio shore. Taking to 
a highway soon found, he followed the lead of the 
north star, and just at daybreak turned into a wood- 
land ravine, and spent the quiet autumnal Sabbath 
watching the grazing of the faithful horse upon such 
herbage as he could find, and in meditating upon 
the wonderful revelations and events oi the past 
twenty-four hours. 

Night clear and beautiful, came again, and Jake 
pursued his onward way, and in the early morning 
turned his jaded beast loose in a retired pasture lot 
not far from Salem ; threw the saddle and bridle 
into a ravine, on the principle that ''dead men tell 
no tales," and prospecting about for some time, saw 
emerge from a farm house a broad-brimmed hat, 
which he had learned v/as a aure sign of food and 
protection. Approaching the Quaker farmer, Uncle 
Jake declared himself a fugitive, and applied for 
food and shelter, which were freely granted. 

Tuesday the stage coach brought into Salem a 
hand])ill giving a full description of Uncle Jake, tell- 
ing of the killing of the master, the probable mortal 
wounding of the other, and offering a large reward 
for his apprehension. 

" Thee oughtest to have struck more carefully, 
friend," said the Quaker, when he had learned thus 
fully the measure of his prot^g^'s adventure, " but 
then as it was in the dark, we may pardon thee thy 
error, but Salem is not a safe place for such as thee. 




I shall take thee to my friend, Dr. Benjamin Stanton, 
who will instruct thee as to what thee is to do." 

Accordingly, when nightfall made it safe, the 
Quaker took Jake to the house of his friend, who 
was none other than a cousin of Lincoln's great War 
Secretary, where having exchanged his laborer's 
garb for a suit of army blue, richly trimmed with 
brass buttons, a style of dress much admired by 
colored people 1.1 those old days of militia training, 
and a high-crowned hat, he was immediately posted 
off to the care of one Barnes, residing on the confines 
of Boardman, bearing to him the simple admonition, 
" It is hot." 

Not appreciating the full merits of the case, Barnes 
took him in the early morning and started for War- 
ren by way of Youngstown. Here he was espied by 
two questionable characters, who having seen the 
hand-bill advertising Jake, and knowing the ante- 
cedents of Barnes, justly surmised that the black 
gentleman in blue might be none other than the in- 
dividual for whom the reward was offered, and at 
once planned a pursuit, but not until the eagle eye 
of the driver had detected their motions. Leaving 
the main road, he struck across the Liberty hills. 
When near Loy's Corners he perceived they were 
pursued, and bade Jake alight and make for some 
place of safety, while he would try and lead the pur- 
suers off the trail. 

In a land of strangers and without protective 
weapons save his knife, Jake could do nothing more 

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than to run up to a little wagon shop by the way- 
side, in the doorway of which stood an honest 
Pennsylvania Dutchman named Samuel Goist, and 
exclaimed, " Lor' Massa, save me from the slave 

Now, Mr. Goist was a Democrat of the straightest 
sect, and had long sworn by "Sheneral Shackson ; " 
he had never before seen a panting fugitive and 
knew nothing of secretive methods, but when he saw 
the venerable, though unique form before him, his 
generous heart was touched, and he replied : "Hite 
gwick in ter hay yonder till I cums," pointing at the 
same time to a last year's haystack, into which the 
cattle had eaten deej) recesses. 

It was but the work of a moment, and sable form, 
blue suit and plug hat were viewless in what the 
winter before had often sheltered the semi-farmer's 
choicest steer from pitiless storm. 

Scarcely was this feat executed when the Youngs- 
town parties came up and knowing the political com- 
plexion of the honest wagon-maker inquired, " Hal- 
loo, old dad, have you seen a buggy go by here with 
a white man, and a nigger dressed in blue, in it?" 

" Ya, shentlemen, py shimmeny ; dot puggy vent 
py das corner ond yonder not more as den minit aco, 
unt er vas trifing das horse, py shingo. I dinks you 
not oferdakes him much pefore Vorren." 

With an expression of rough thanks, the men 
struck off under a full gallop which carried them 
into Warren right speedily, but in the meantime 









Barnes had watched his opportunity, turned off 
through Niles, and pursued his homeward journey 
by way of Austintown. 

Turning from his shop when his interrogators were 
out of sight, Mr. Goist called his good frou and said, 
" Veil, Mutter, I kes I haf lite shust a lidel." 

" Vot, you, fater, haf lite ? O mine ! " 

" Veil, Mutter, you zee von plack man comes along 
unt asks me him for to hite, unt I say in dem stock ; 
unt den cums sum mans fon Youngstown unt says 
he ' or dat, you sees von puggy mit nigger unt vite 
man goes dis vay ? ' Unt I say, ' Ya, dot puggy vas 
kon py like a shtreak.' " 

" mine, fater, das vas no liegen ; you shust say 
dot puggy vas kon." 

" Veil, if dot mans was Sheneral Shackson, I 
should him tell shust der zame." 

That evening Uncle Jake received an ample sup- 
per from the larder of good Mother Goist, and was 
then placed in a wagon under a cover of straw and 
conveyed close to the house of a Mr. Stewart near 
the corner of Vienna, whom rumor had pointed out 
to the honest Dutchman as one of " dem aperlishi- 
oners." Here he was bidden " goot py," and soon 
found his way to the cabin indicated, whence in due 
time he was forwarded to General Andrew Bushnell, 
a prominent anti-slavery man south of the centre of 


Even at that early day, Hartford and Vernon had 


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established for themselves a wide-spread reputation 
for expertness in the forwarding business. General 
Bushnell, on account of his age and experience was 
looked upon as the acknowledged front of affairs, 
but his work was ably seconded by many others, 
particularly by two young men, Ralph Plumb, of 
Burgh Hill, and Levi Sutliff, who still resided with 
his parents in the north part of Vernon. These 
young men were ever on the alert for daring enter- 
prise, but just now discretion was considered the 
better part of valor, for slow as news moved, it was 
not long before the chase from Youngstown to War- 
ren became known in Hartford, and anti-fugitive eyes 
became unusually vigilent about town, and it was 
whispered that the blue suit might come that way 
and some one might pick up a handsome reward. 

For some days Uncle Jake was carefully secreted 
in a hay barn, together with a young man who had 
previously reached the General's. Plumb and Sut- 
liff were so carefully watched, it was thought best to 
commit the carrying of the twain to other hands — 
but whose should they be ? 

Young Plumb had a sister Mary, about twenty 
years of age, the affianced of Sutliff, and the General 
had a daughter bearing the same name a year or two 
younger, both spirited, resolute girls, and ready for 
any good work. When only fourteen, Miss Bush- 
nell, in a case of special emergency, had hitched up 
the family carriage, (a one-horse wagon,) and con- 
veyed a fleeing family from her father's to the Sutliff 






home, a distance of eight miles, encountering a 
fearful thunderstorm on the way, and returning be 
fore the first peep of morning light. 

One day when conversing on the best way of dis- 
posing of the case in hand, Ralph said : " Leve, 
suppose we commit this mission to the Marys; I 
believe they will put the stock safely through to the 

" Capital," replied his companion ; " have you ma- 
tured a scheme ? " 

'' Partially." 

"What is it?" 

" Well your father is to have a load of hay of the 
General. Come along with the team and I'll help 
you get it. We'll pack Uncle Jake and the boy into 
the load, take Mary on with us and bring her down 
to our house, there take on sister, and when the hay 
is in the SutlifF barn the rest can be easily arranged." 

" But will the girls consent? " 

" The Bushnell has been tried, and you are the 
last man that ought to raise a question about the 

That afternoon the team of the senior Sutliff was 
driven through the center of Hartford and to the 
hay-barn of Andrew Bushnell, where it was duly 
loaded, the two choicest spires being extended longi- 
tudinally a short distance from the top. Passing 
the house, Mary was taken on and a merry trio pro- 
ceeded nori-xiward only to be expanded to a jubilant 
quartette on arriving at the Hill. No suspicion was 

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aroused, for those were days when a woman's worth 
and modesty w^ere not lessened by her being seen in 
sun-bonnet and shawl upon a load of hay. 


One, two, three, , , , , , , 

, , twelve, went the clock in the old, low 

SutlifF mansion; a light two-horse wagon, the bed 
filled with hay as if covering a " grist," was backed 
out of the barn ; two strong horses were attached ; 
warm kisses were administered to ruby lips ; and a 
couple of w'ell-wrapped female forms ascended to the 
seat ; a delicately gloved hand laid hold of the lines, 
and the team sped briskly towards the " Kinsman 


Deacon Andrews, in the old farm liouse still stand- 
ing on the brink of the little ravine south of the 
hamlet of Lindenville, had put up his morning 
prayer for the drowning host of Pharaoh, the Greeks, 
the Romans and the Jews, said " Amen " and arisen 
from his knees, when his wife, looking out of the 
window, exclaimed: "See, husband, there's the 
Sutliff team ; but who is driving ? As I live, if it 
isn't a couple of girls, and all the way up from Ver- 
non so early as this! What can they want?" 

" Going to the 'Harbor' witn grain^ I presume; 
likely the men folks are busy." 

" But then I didn't know the Sutliflf's have any 







" Well, wife, likely they've hired the team to some 
of the neighbors. Vou start the children out after 
chestnuts, quick.'' 

There was a lively scampering of young Andrews 
to the woods ; a hasty breakfasting of girls and 
horses ; a close examination of the sacks under the 
hay to see if all was right; a pleasant " good morn- 
ing," and the team went northward and the deacon 
to his work, mentally exclaiming : " Great and 
marvelous are the works of the Almighty — and Plumb 
and Sut — " but he checked the irreverent conclusion. 


It was high noon at Jefferson, and Ben Wade 
brought his fist down upon the cover of the volume 
of Blackstone he had closed, as he arose to go to 
dinner, and ejaculated, " Who the d — 1 is that, Gid." 

The i)leasant, bland countenanced gentleman to 
whom these words were addresssd looked up, and 
there in front of the little office bearing the unpreten- 
tious sign, 



n'ere two plump, rosy-cheeked giris, each engaged in 
hitching a horse. 

" Zounds, Ben, you ought to know your Trumbull 
county friends. It hasn't been so long since you 
taught school at the Center of Hartfort that you 
should have forgotten the Bushnells and the Plumbs." 

"The h — 11! I wonder if those two lasses can be 
the little Mollies I used to enjoy so much." 

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'' They are the Miss Bushnell and Miss Plumb I 
met at SutUff's a few days ago, though I do not 
know their names." 

The two attorneys, as yet unknown to fame, at- 
tended, without fees, to the consultation of the young 
ladies, treated them and theirs to the best fare of him 
who was afterwards well known in Railroad circles 
as "Anno Mundi," and then sent them forward with 
a kind letter of introduction to " Doctor " Henry 
Harris, the most likely man to greet them. 


" Can j^ou direct us to Dr. Harris ? " said a sweet 
voiced girl to a trim, quick-stepping, rather fashion- 
ably dressed young gentleman on the street in the 
little village of Ashtabula, as she reined up a two- 
horse team. 

" Hem, 'em 'em, Dr. Harris? 'em, why, that is 
what they call me." 

'' Are you the only Dr. Harris in town ? " 
'"Em, yes. Miss. What can I do for you? " 
The letters of the Jefferson attorneys was placed 
in his hands. 

"'Em, hem," he exclaimed, after reading it. 
" Freight f we can not ship now ; shall have to stow 
it in our up-town ware-house ; " saying which he led 
the way out to a country home, now occupied as a 
city residence, where the freight was deposited in a 
hay mow, whilst the kind-hearted old Scotchman, 
Deacon McDonald and his wife most graciously 
cared for the intrepid drivers for the liight. 



The young man Ned was soon sent away, but 
Uncle Jake lingered in the vicinity for considerable 
time. The winter of 1836 he spent at the Harbor in 
the family of Deacon Wm. Hubbard, rendering valu- 
able service U " pointing " the walls and plastering 
the cellar of ine house now occupied as a store and 
residence by Captain Starkey. He is still well re- 
membered by A. F. Hubbard, Esq., whose father 
offered him a home in his family; but Jake finally 
left and nothing is known of his subsequent course. 

Of the two young ladies so intimately connected 
with this history, Miss Bushnell ultimately married 
a Mr. Estabrook, and was for many years one of the 
most esteemed ladies of Warren, O., and now sieeps 
in Oakwood Cemetery near that beautiful city. The 
other joined her destiny with that of her affiance 
shortly after that memorable ride, and a few weeks 
since 1 stood in the little church-yard at Burgh Hill, 
shrouded as it was in a far-reaching coverlet of snow 
and copied the following from a small marble head- 
dtone : 


Died March 1st, 1836. 

AE., 23. 

Fi'rsi Sec'y of i fie Female Anti-Slauery Society of 
Vernon, A. D., 18^4..'' 




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[The circumstances of the following narative were partially 
written up when secured by the author. ] 

O you believe you can succeed, George? It is 
a great undertaking." 

"If we can not succeed, Mary, we can try. Thin 
gervitude is worse than death." 

" But our master is very good." 

" Yes, master is good and kind, and no harm shall 
come to him. But no master is as good as freedom." 

"But then the whites have all the power on their 

" The whites, Mary ! Who are whiter than we — 
than you and I ? You the slave of your own father; 
I sold from my mother's arms that my features 
might not bring disgrace upon a man of position. 
White folks, indeed ! " 

" True, George, our lot is a wretched one, but then 
as you love me, and as master and mistress are so 
kind, would it not be better to remain quiet, lest we, 
too, are separated, and all our hopes for life 
blighted ? " 

"We are taking a great risk, Mary, but Nat says 




re 80 

t we, 





we can not fail. I sometimes fear that we shall and 
I know the consequences, and will meet them like a 
man, for I know you will love me still, Mary." 

" Yes, George, but the love of a poor helpless slave 
girl can not compensate you for what you may have 
to endure, perhaps for life itself." 

" Mary, dear as you are to me, liberty for us both, 
or death in attempting to secure it, will be a far 
greater boon, coupled with your love, than to share 
that love, however fervent, through a life-long servi- 

" But, George, don't you remember how often you 
have heard master and his guests talk about those 
strange people, Poles and Greeks they call them, and 
how they have struggled for freedom, only mostly to 
make their condition worse ? " 

" Yes, Mary, and I have heard them tell how they 
would like to go and help them fight for their liberty. 
Then I have heard master tell how hie own father 
fought in the war he calls the Revolution, and didn't 
the Judge say in his speech last Independence that 
that is the day, above all others, which proclairr.3 
that ' all men are created free and equal ? ' Am I 
not a man, and should I not be equal to any one 
v.'lio calls himself master and me slave? No, Mary, 
the die is cast and six hundred slaves — no, men — 
will strike for freedom on these plantations in less 
than a week. But there is the horn, and ^ must go." 

The above conversation took place in the home of 
a Virginia planter more than sixty years ago. The 


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parties were young, less than twenty ; both white, 
both slaves, for the peculiar institution by no means 
attached itself to the sable African alone. The fet- 
tered were of every hue, from that of ebon blackness 
to the purest caucassion white. Slavery knew no 
sacred ties, but only the bonds of lust. Hence this 
strange gradation of color, for as the master acknowl- 
edged nothing more than a conventional marriage, 
so he held out no encouragement to the slave women 
to be virtuous and chaste. The girl Mary was, in- 
deed, the daughter of Mr. Green, her master, and 
George the son of a high government official, his 
mother being a servant in the Washington hotel 
where the official boarded. The boy looked so akin 
to his father that he was early sold to a slave dealer 
that the scandal might be hushed. From this dealer 
he was purchased by Mr. Green, who was indeed a 
kind-hearted man and treated his slaves with great 

Both being house servants, and thrown much to- 
gether, an earnest attachment sprang up between 
them. This was by no means discouraged by master 
or mistress. Though they could neither read nor 
write, their natural ai)tnes8 and constant association 
with family and guests soon imparted to them a 
good degree of culture and general information. 

The cause of the conversation above referred to 
was the revelation to Mary by her lover of a plot on 
the part of about six hundred slaves of the councy 
of Southampton to rise in rebellion and obtain their 

! it 



freedom. From any participation in it she would 
gladly have dissuaded him, though in perfect sym- 
pathy with his feelings, but the proud Anglo-Saxon 
blood and spirit of George were fully enlisted in the 
undertaking, and when " Nat Turner's Insurrection " 
broke upon the astonished planters there was no 
braver man in its ranks than George. But six hun- 
dred slaves, imperfectly armed as they were, could 
make but little headway. They were soon defeated. 
Those who were not captured fled to the Dismal 
Swamp. Here ordered to surrender, they challenged 
their pursuers. A furious struggle ensued between 
the owners and their human chattels, men and 
women. They were hunted with blood-hounds, and 
many who were caught were tortured even unto 
death. Not until the United States troops were 
called in, was their forlorn hope, struggling for free- 
dom, entirely vanquished. 

Among the last to surrender was George. He was 
tried before a civil court and condemned to be 
hanged. Ten days only were to elapse before the 
carrying out of the sentence. 

Being a member of a Christian church, Mary 
sought and obtained, through the influence of her 
mistress, with whom George had been an especial 
favorite, permission to visit him in the jail and ad- 
minister the consolation of religion. Seated by his 
side but four days before the day of execution, she 

" George you made an effort for freedom against 






<~ I 

my wish, now will you make another, one in which 
I fully accord?" 

" For me there is no hope. Whilst it is hard to 
part from you, I am not afraid to die." 

" If you are hanged, we must be separated, if you 
escape it can be no more." 

" Escape ! how ? " 

" Well, listen. You shall exchange clothes with 
me. Then at my accustomed time of leaving you 
shall depart, and I will remain in your place. They 
will not harm me, and so nearly are we of a size, and 
so close the general resemblance, that you will have 
no difficulty in passing the guard. Once without 
the gate, you can easily escape to the woods, the 
mountains, to a land of liberty. May be " 

" Never can I consent to this. These miserable 
men would wreak their vengeance on you." 

" Never fear for me, and may be when you are 
safe in Canada you can provide for my coming to 

" If it were possible, but — " 

The turnkey gave the signal for departure, and 
Mary arose and left. 

During the next day she carefully prepared a 
package of provisions and hid it in a secluded place. 
The day was dark and gloomy, portending a storm. 
Just at evening she presented herself at the prison 
door and was readily admitted. Once beside her 
lover, she again importuned him to make an effort 
to escape. At last he consented. It was but the 





work of a moment to exchange clothing, to impart 
the necessary instructions with regard to the provis- 
ions, to pledge one another to, eternal constancy, 
when the door opened and the harsh voice of the 
keeper exclaimed, '' Come, Miss, it is time for you to 


It was now storming furiously. Weeping and 
with a handkerchief applied to his face, as was 
Mary's custom when leaving, George passed out and 
the door immediately closed upon the innocent in- 
mate of the cell. 

It was now dark, so that our hero in his new 
dress had no fear of detection. The provisions were 
sought and found, and poor George was soon on the 
road to Canada. But neither he nor Mary had 
thought of a change of dress for him when he should 
have escaped, and he walked but a short distance 
before he felt that a change of his apparel would 
facilitate his progress. But he dared not go among 
even his colored associates, for fear of being be- 
trayed. However, he made the best of his way on 
towards Canada, hiding in the woods by day and 
traveling by the guidance of the pole star at night. 

One morning George arrived on the banks of the 
Ohio river, and found his journey had terminated 
unless he could get some one to take him across in a 
secret manner, for he would not be permitted to 
cross in any of the ferry boats. He concealed him- 
self in tall grass and weeds near the river to see if 
he could not secure an opportunity to cross. He 

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had been in his hiding place but a short time, when 
he observed a man in a small boat, floating near the 
shore, evidently fishing. His first impulse was to 
call out to the man and ask him to take him across 
the river to the Ohio shore, but the fear that he was 
a slaveholder or one who might possibly arrest him 
deterred him from it. The man after rowing and 
floating about for some time, fastened the boat to the 
root of a tree, and started to a farm-house not far 
distant. This was George's opportunity, and he 
seized it. Running down the bank, he unfastened 
the I )at and jumped in, and with all the expertness 
of one accustomed to a boat, rowed across the river 
and landed safely on free soil. 

Being now in a free state, he thought he might 
with perfect safety travel on towards Canada. He 
had, however, gone but a few miles, when he dis- 
covered two men on horseback coming behind him. 
He felt sure that they could not be in pursuit of him, 
yet he did not wish to be seen by them, so he turned 
into another road leading to a house near by. The 
men followed, and were but a short distance from 
George, when he ran up to a farm-house, before 
which was standing a farmer-looking man, in a 
broad-brimmed hat and straight-collared coat, whom 
he implored to save him from the " slave-catchers." 
The farmer told him to go into the barn near by ; he 
entered by the front door, the farmer following and 
closing the door behind George, but remaining out- 
pide, gave directions to his hired man as to what 




Bhould be done with him. The slaveholders had 
by this time dismounted, and were in front of the 
barn demanding admittance, and charging the farmer 
with secreting their slave woman for George was 
still in the dress of a woman. The Friend, for the 
farmer proved to be a member of the Society of 
Quakers, told the slave-owners that if they wished to 
search his barn, they must first get an officer and a 
search warrant. While the parties were disputing, 
the farmer began nailing up the front door, and the 
hired man served the back door the same way. 
The slaveholders, finding that they could not prevail 
on the Friend to allow them to get the slave, deter- 
mined to go in search of an officer. One was left to 
see that the slave did not escape from the barn, while 
the other went off at full speed to Mt. Pleasant, the 
nearest town. 

George was not the slave of either of these meti, 
nor were they in pursuit of him, but they had lost a 
woman who had been seen in that vicinity, and 
when they saw poor George in the disguise of a fe- 
male, and attempting to elude pursuit, they felt sure 
tliey were close upon their victim. However, if they 
liad caught him, although he was not their slave 
they would have taken him back and placed him in 
jail, and there he would have remained until his 
owner arrived. 

After an absence of nearly two hours, tlie slave- 
owner returned with an officer, and found the Friend 
still driving large nails into the door. In a 


1 ( H 

1;! r:P 





1 06 


triumphant tone, and with a corresponding gesture, 
he handed the search-warrant to the Friend, and said: 

" There, sir, now I will see if he can't get my 

" Well," said the Friend, " thou hast gone to work 
according to law, and thou canst now go into my 

" Lend me your hammer that I may get the door 
open," said the slaveholder." 

" Let me see the warrant again." And after read- 
ing it over once more, he said, " I see nothing in 
this paper which says I must supply thee with tools 
to open my door ; if thou wishest to go in thou must 
get a hammer elsewhere." 

The sheriff said : " I will go to a neighboring 
farm and borrow something which will introduce us 
to Miss Dinah;" and he immediately went off in 
search of tools. 

In a short time the officer returned, and they com- 
menced an assault and battery upon the barn door, 
which soon yielded; and in went the slaveholder 
and officer, and began turning up the hay and using 
all other means to find the lost property ; but, to 
their astonishment, the slave was not there. After 
all hopes of getting Dinah were gone, the slave- 
owner, in a rage, said to the Friend : 



I a rage, saia to tr 
My Nigger is not here. 



I did not tell thee there was anyone here. 
" Yes, but I saw her go in, and you shut the door 
behind her, and if she wa'nt in the barn what did 
you nail the door for ? " 

'a.f> '.^-.•- 




" Can not I do what I please with my own barn 
door? Now I will tell thee. Thou need trouble 
thyself no more, for the person thou art after entered 
the front door and went out the back door, and is a 
long way from here by this time Thou and thy 
friend must be somewhat fatigued by this time ; 
won't thee go in and take a little dimmer with me? " 

We need not say that this cool invitation of the 
good Quaker was not accepted by the slaveholders. 

George in the meantime had been taken to a 
Friend's dwelling some miles away, where, after lay- 
ing aside his female attire, and being snugly dressed 
up in a straight-collared coat, and pantaloons to 
match, he was again put on the right road towards 

His passage through Ohio, by the way of Canfield 
and Warren, was uneventful, but at Bloomfield he 
was detained several days on account of the presence 
of some slave hunters from his own state, and who 
had a description of him among others. In this 
town is a great marsh or swamp of several thousand 
acres, at the time of our story all undrained. In the 
center of this swamp, Mr, Brown, the owner, had 
erected a small hut, one of the very first special sta- 
tions built on the Underground Railroad. To this 
secluded retreat George was taken, and there re- 
mained until the departure of his enemies, when he 
was safely conveyed to Ashtabula Harbor, whence 
he was given free passage, by the veteran agent, 
Hubbard, of the Mystic Line in Canada. Arriving 


11 •; 


: 1 




d'4 ■ 11 

at St. Catherines, he began to work upon the farm of 
Colonel Strut, and also attended a night school, 
where he showed great proficiency in acquiring the 
Tudiments of an education. 

Once beginning to earn money, George did not 
forget his promise to use all means in his power to 
get Mary out of slavery. He, therefore, labored with 
all his might to obtain money with which to employ 
some one to go back to Virginia for Mary. After 
nearly six month's labor at St. Catharines, he em- 
ployed an English missionary to go and see if the 
girl could be purchased, and at what price. The 
missionary went accordingly, but returned with the 
sad intelligence that on account of Mary's aiding 
George to escape, the court had compelled Mr. Green 
to sell her out of the State, and she had been sold to 
a Negro-trader and taken to the New Orleans market. 
As all hope of getting the girl was now gone, George 
resolved to quit the American continent forever. He 
immediately took passage in a vessel laden with 
timber, bound for Liverpool, and in five weeks from 
the time he was standing on a quay of the great 
English seaport. With little education, he found 
many difficulties in the way of getting a respec- 
table living. However, he obtained a situation 
as porter in a large house in Manchester, where he 
worked during the day, and took private lessons at 
night. In this way he labored for three years, and 
was then raised to the position of clerk. George was 
so white as easily to pass for Caucassian, and being 




somewhat ashamed of his African decent, he never 
once mentioned the fact of his having been a slave. 
He soon became a partner in the firm that employed 
him, and was now on the road to wealth. 

In the year 1842, just ten years after, George 
Green, for so he called himself, arrived in England, 
he visited France, and spent some days at Dunkirk. 

It was towards sunset, on a w^arm day in the 
month of October, that Mr. Green, after strolling 
some distance from the Hotel de Leon, entered a 
burial ground and wandered long alone among the 
silent dead, gazing upon the many green graves and 
niarljle tombstones of those who once moved on the 
theatre of busy life, and whose sounds of gayety 
once fell upon the ear of man. All nature was, 
hushed in silence, and seemed to partake of the gen- 
eral melancholy which hung over the quiet resting- 
place of departed mortals. After tracing the varied 
inscriptions which told the characters or conditions 
of the departed, and viewing the mounds beneath 
which the dust of mortality slumbered, he had 
reached a secluded spot, near to where an aged weep- 
ing willow bowed its thick foliage to the ground, as 
though anxious to hide from the scrutinizing gaze of 
curiosity the grave beneath it. Mr. Green seated 
himself upon a marble tomb, and began to read 
Roscoe's Leo X., a copy of which he had under his 
arm. It was then about twilight, and he had scarcely 
read half a page, when he observed a lady dressed in 
black, and leading a boy some five years old up one 





\ A"' 
! A \ 

iii '^ .V 



■ \ 

• \ 





ot the paths ; e.rA as the lady's black veil was over her 
face, he felt somewhat at liberty to eye her more 
closely. Whilw looking at her, the lady ;^ave a 
scream and appeared to be in a fainting position, 
when Mr. Green sprang from his seat in time to save 
her from falling to the ground. At this moment an 
elderly gentleman was seen approaching with a rapid 
step, who, from his appearance, was evidently the 
lady's father, or one intimately connected with her. 
He came up, and in a confused manner asked what 
was the matter. Mr. Green explained as well as he 
could. After taking up the smelling bottle, which 
had fallen from her hand, and holding it a short 
time to her face, she soon began to revive. During 
all this time the lady's veil had so covered her face 
that Mr, Green had not seen it. When she had so 
far recovered as to be able to raise her head, she 
again screamed, and fell back in the arms of the old 
man. It now appeared quite certain that either the 
countenance of George Green, or some other object, 
was the cause of these fits of fainting ; and the old 
gentleman, thinking it was the former, in rather a 
petulant tone, said, " I will thank you, sir, if you 
will leave us alone." The child whom the lady was 
leading had now set up a squall; and amid the 
death-like appearance of the lady, the harsh look of 
the old man, and the cries of the boy, Mr. Green left 
the grounds and returned to his hotel. 

Whilst seatec by the window, and looking out 
upon the crowded street, with every now and then 


i ■' » 



I . 

\) ■■ 

the strange scene in the graveyard vividly before 
him, Mr. Green thought of the book he had been 
reading, and remembering that he had lefc it on the 
tomb, where he had suddenly dropped it when 
called to the assistance of the lady, he immediately 
determined to return in search of it. After a walk of 
some twenty minutes, he was again over the spot 
where he had been an hour before, and from where 
he had been so uncermoniously expelled by the old 
man. He looked in vain for the book; it was no- 
where to be found; nothing save the bouquet which 
the lady had dropped, and which lay half buried in 
the grass from having been trodden upon, indicated 
that any one had been there that evening. Mr. 
Green took up the bunch of tiowers, and again re- 
turned to the hotel. 

After passing a sleepless night, and hearing the 
clock strike six, he dropped into a sweet sleep, from 
which he did not av/ake until roused by the rap of a 
servant, who, entering the room, handed him a note 
which ran as follows: — 

" Sir : I owe an apology for the inconvenience to which 
you were subjected last evening, and if you will honor us 
with your presence to dinner to-day at four o'clock, I shall 
bt most happy to give you due satisfaction. My servant 
will be in wailing for you at half-past three. 

I am, sir, your obedient servant, 

J. Dkvenant. 
To George Green, Esq. October 23. ' 

The servant who handed this note to Mr. Green 
informed him that the bearer was waiting for a 



■ \ V 


I 'I ' 
! 1 1 '^ 

1 1 ,. 



1 12 


reply. He immediately resolved to accept the invita- 
tion, and replied accordingly. Who this person -vvaj, 
and how his name and hotel where he was stopping 
had been found out, was indeed a mystery. How- 
ever, he waited somewhat impatiently for the hour 
when he was to see his new acquaintance, and get 
the mysterious meeting in the grave-yard solved. 

The clock on the neighboring church had scarcely 
ceased striking three, when the servant announced 
that a carriage had called for Mr. Green. In less 
than half an hour he was seated in a most sumptu- 
ous barouche, drawn by two beautiful iron grays, 
and rolling along over a splendid gravel road, com- 
pletely shaded by large trees which appeared to have 
been the accumulated growth of centuries. The 
carriage soon stopped in front of a low villa, and this 
too was imbedded in magnificent trees covered with 
moss. Mr. Green alighted and was shown into a 
superb drawing-room, the walls of which were hung 
with fine specimens from the hands of the great 
Italian painters, and one by a German artist repre- 
senting a beautiful monkish legend connected with 
" The Holy Catharine," an illustrious lady of Alex- 
andra. The furniture had an antique and dignified 
appearance. High-backed chairs stood around the 
room ; a venerable mirror stood on the mantle shelf; 
rich curtains of crimson damask hung in folds at 
either side of the large windows; and a rich Turkiiih 
carpet covered the floor. In the center stood a tal)]e 
covered with books, in the midst of which was an 




>n Tvaj, 
ie hour 
md get 

In less 
,d, com- 
to have 
8. The 
Lnd this 
ed with 
into a 
re hung 
e great 
t repre- 
d with 
f Alex- 
nd the 
olds at 
ji ta\)h 
was an 


old-fashioned vase filled with fresh flowers, whose 
fragrance was exceedingly pleasant. A faint light, 
together with the quietness of the hour, gave a 
beauty, beyond description, to the whole scene. 

Mr. Green had scarcely seated himself upon the 
sofa, when the elderly gentleman whom he had met 
the previous evening made his appearance, followed 
by the little boy, and introduced himself as Mr. 
Devenant. A moment more, and a lady — a beauti- 
ful brunette — dressed in black, with long curls 01 a 
chestnut color hanging down her cheeks, entered the 
room. Her eyes were of a dark hazel, and her whole 
appearance indicated that she was a native of a 
southern clime. The door at which she entered was. 
opposite to where the two gentlemen were seated. 
They innnediately arose ; and Mr. Devenant was in 
the act of introducing her to Mr. Green, when he ob- 
served that the latter had sunk back upon the sofa, 
and the last word that he remembered to have heard 
was, " It is she." After this all was dark and dreary ; 
how long he remained in this condition it was for 
another to tell. When he awoke he found himself 
stretched upon the sofa with his boots off, his neoker- 
chief removed, shirt-collar unbuttoned, and his head 
resting upon a pillow. By his side sat the old man, 
with the smelling bottle in one hand, and a glass of 
water in the other, and the little boy standing at the 
foot of the sofa. As soon as Mr. Green had so far 
recovered as to be able to speak, he said : 

" Where am I, and what does this mean ?" 


'.) ^'^ 




. 1 




" Wait awhile," replied the old man, " and I will 
tell you all." 

After a lapse of some ten minutes he rose from the 
sofa, adjusted his apparel, and said : 

" I am now ready to hear anything you have to 



'' You were born in America ? " said the old man. 

" Yes," he replied. 

" And you were acquainted with a girl named 
Mary ? " continued the old man. 

" Yes, and I loved her as I can love none other." 

*' That lady whom you met so mysteriously last 
evening is Mary," replied Mr. Devenant. 

George Green was silent, but the fountains of min- 
gled grief and joy stole out from beneath his eye- 
lashes, and glistened like pearls upon his pale and 
marble-like cheeks. At this juncture the lady again 
entered the room. Mr. Green sprang from the sofa, 
and they fell into each other's arms, to the surprise 
ot the old man and little George, and to the amuse- 
ment of the servants, who had crept up one by one, 
and were hidden behind the doors or loitering in 
the hall. When they had given vent to their feel- 
ings, they resumed their seats, and each in turn re- 
lated the adventures through which tb«^y had 

" How did you find out my name and address ? " 
asked Mr. Green. 

" After you had left us in the gra^e-yard, our lit- 
tle George said, ' 0, mamma, if there ain't a book ! ' 



i .: 

and picked it up and brought it to us. Papa opened 
it, and said, ' The gentleman's name is written in it, 
and here is a card of the Hotel de Leon, where I sup- 
pose he is stopping.' Papa wished to leave the book, 
and said it was all a fancy of mine that I had ever 
seen you before, but I was perfectly convinced that 
you were my own George Green. Are you married? " 

" No, I am not." 

" Then, thank God ! " exclaimed Mrs. Devenant, 
for such her name. 

The old man, who had been silent all this time, 

" Now, sir, I must apologize for the trouble you 
were put to last evening." 

"And are you single now?" asked Mr. Green, 
addressing the lady. 

" Yes," she replied. 

" This is indeed the Lord 's doings," said Mr. Green, 
at the same time bursting into a Hood of tears. 

Although Mr. Devenant was past the age when 
men should think upon matrimonial subjects, yet 
this scene brought vividly before his eyes the days 
when he was a young man, and had a wife living, 
and he thought it was time to call their attention to 
dinner, which was then waiting. We need scarcely 
add that Mr. Green and Mrs. Devenant did very lit- 
tle towards diminishing the dinner that day. 

After dinner the lovers (for such we have to jail 
them) gave their experience from the time that 
George Green left the jail, dressed in Mary's clothes. 






Up to that time Mr. Green's was substantially as we 
have related it. Mrs. Devenant's was as follows : 

" The night after you left the prison." she said, 
" I did not shut my eyes in sleep. The next morn- 
ing, about eight o'clock, Peter, the gardener, came to 
the jail to see if I had been there the night before, 
and was informed that I had left a little after dark. 
About an hour after, Mr. Green came himself, and 1 
need not say that he was much surprised on finding 
me there, dressed in your clothes. This was the 
first tidings they had of your escape." 

" What did Mr. Green say when he found that I 
had fled ? '' 

'' O " continued Mrs. Devenant, " he said to me 
when no one was near, ' I hope George will get off, 
but I fear you will have to suffer in his stead. I 
told him that if it must be so I was willing to die if 
you could live." 

At this moment George Green burst into tears, 
threw his arms around her neck, and exclaimed, "I 
am glad I have waited so long, with the hope of 
meeting you again." 

Mrs. Devenant again resumed her story : " I was 
kept in jail three days, during which time I was vis- 
ited by the magistrates and two of the judges. On 
the third day I was taken out, and master told me 
that I was liberated upon condition that I be imme- 
diately sent out of the State. There happened to be, 
jus' at that time, in the neighborhood, a Negro- 
trader, and he purchased me and I was taken tu New 




Orleans. On the steamboat we were kept in a close 
room where slaves are usually confined, so that I 
saw nothing of the passengers on board, or the towns 
we passed. We arrived at New Orleans, and were 
all put in the slave market for sale. I was examined 
by many persons, but none seemed willing to pur- 
chase me; as all thought me too white, and said I 
would run away and pass as a white woman. On 
the second day, while in the slave market, and while 
planters and others were examining slaves and mak- 
ing their purchases, I observed a tall young man 
with long black hair eyeing me very closely, and 
then talking to the trader. I felt sure that my time 
had now come, but the day closed without my being 
sold. I did not regret this, for I had heard that 
foreigners made the worst of masters, and I felt con- 
fident that the man who eyed me so closely was not 
an American. 

" The next day was the Sabbath. The bells called 
the people to the different places of worship. Metho- 
dists sang, and Baptists immersed, and Presbyterians 
sprinkled, and Episcopalians read their prayers, 
while the ministers of the various sects preached 
that Christ died for all ; yet there was some twenty- 
five or thirty of us poor creatures confined in the 
' Negro-Pen,' awaiting the close of the holy Sabbath 
and the dawn of another day, to be again taken into 
the market, there to be examined like so many 
beasts of burden. I need not tell you with what 
anxiety we waited for the advent of another day. 







,1 • ••- 




On Monday we were again brought out, and placed 
in rows to be inspected; and, fortunately for me, I 
was sold before we had been on the stand an hour. 
I was purchased by a gentleman residing in the city, 
for a waiting-maid for his wife, who was just on the 
eve of starting for Mobile, to pay a visit to a near 
relative. I was dressed to suit the situation of a 
maid-servant ; and, upon the whole, I thought that 
in my new dress I looked as much the lady as my 

" On the passage to Mobile, who should I see, 
among the passengers, but the tall, long-haired man 
that had eyed me so closely in the slave market a 
few day before. His eyes were again on me, and he 
appeared anxious to speak to me, and I as reluctant 
to be spoken to. The urst evening after leaving 
New Orleans, soon after twilight had let her curtain 
down, while I was seated on the deck of the boat, 
near the ladies' cabin, looking upon the rippled 
waves, and the reflection of the moon upon the sea, 
all at onee I saw the tall young man standing by my 
side. I immediately arose from my seat, and was in 
the act of returning to the cabin, when he in broken 
accent said : 

"'Stop a moment; I wish to have a word with 
you. I am your friend.' 

" I stopped and looked him full in the face, and 
he said, * I saw you some days since in the slave 
market, and I intended to have purchased you to 
save you from the condition of a slare. I called on 



u to 



Monday, but you had been sold and had left the 
market. I inquired and learned who the purchaser 
was, and that you had to go to Mobile, so I resolved 
to follow you. If you are willing I will try and buy 
you from your present owner, and you shall be free.' 

"Although this was said in an honest and off- 
hand manner, I could not believe the man was sin- 
cere in what he said. 

" ' Why should you wish to set me free ? ' I asked. 

"'I had an only sister,' he replied, 'who died 
three years ago in France, and you are so much like 
her that, had I not known of her death, I would 
most certainly have taken you for her,' 

" ' However much I may resemble your sister, you 
are aware that I am not her, and why take so much 
interest in one whom you have never seen before ? ' 

" ' The love,' said he, ' which I had foi my sister is 
transferred to you.' 

" I had all along suspected that the man was a 
knave, and his profession of love confirmed me in 
my former belief, and I turned away and left him. 

" The next day, while standing in the cabin and 
looking through the window, the French gentleman 
(for such he was) came to the window, while walk- 
ing on the guards, and again commenced as on the 
previous evening. He took from his pockert a bit of 
paper and put it into my hand, at the same time 
saying : 

'"Take this; it may some day be of service to 
vou. Remember it is from a friend,' and left me 

i H 


! :*■ 


I * 

1 1^ 
i ti 


i ki 


S :^~ ' 

1 20 


" I unfolded the paper and found it to be a $100 
bank note, on the United States Branch Bank, at 
Philadelphia. My first impulse was to give it to my 
mistress, but upon a second thought, I resolved to 
seek an opportunity, and to return the hundred dol- 
lars to the stranger. Therefore I looked for him, but 
in vain ; and had almost given up the idea of seeing 
him again, when he passed me on the guards of the 
boat and walked tow ards the stern of the vessel. It 
being nearly dark I approached him and offered the 
money to him. 

" He declined, saying at the same time, ' I gave it 
you — keep it.' 

" ' I do not want it,' I said. 

" ' Now,' said he, ' you had better give your con- 
sent for me to purchase you, and you shall go with 
me to France.' 

" ' But you can not buy me now,' I replied, ' for 
my master is in New Orleans, and he purchased me 
not to sell, but to retain in his own family.' 

" ' Would you rather remain with your present 
mistress than to be free ? ' 

" ' No,' said I. 

"'Then fly with me to-night; we shall bt in Mo- 
bile in two hours from this time, and when the pas- 
sengers are going on shore, you can take my arm , 
and you can escape unobserved. The trader who 
brought you to New Orleans exhibited to me a cer- 
tificate of your good character, and one from the 
minister of the church to which vou were attached 







in Virginia ; and upon the faith of these assurances, 
and the love I bear you, I promise before high 
heaven that I will marry you as soon as it can be 

"This solemn promise, coupled \^ith what had 
already transpired, gave me confidence in the man ; 
and, rash as the act may seem, I determined in an 
instant to go with him. My mistress had been put 
under the charge of the captain ; and as it would be 
past ten o'clock when the steamer would land, she 
accepted an invitation of the captain to remain on 
board with several other ladies till morning. 

" I dressed myself in my best clothes, and put a 
veil over my face, and was ready on the landing of 
the boat. Surrounded by a number of passengers, 
we descended the stage leading to the wharf and 
were soon lost in the crowd that thronged the quay. 
As we went on shore we encountered several persons 
announcing the names of hotels, the starting of boats 
for the interior, and vessels bound for Europe. 
Among these was the ship Utica, Captain Pell, bound 
for Havre. 

" ' Now,' said Mr. Devenant, this is our chance.' 

" The ship was to sail at twelve o'clock that night, 
at high tide; and following the men who were seek- 
ing passengers, we were immediately on board. De- 
venant told the captain of the ship that I was his 
sister, and for such, we passed during the long voy- 
age. At the hour of twelve the Utica set sail, and 
we were soon out at sea. 










" The morning after we left Mobile, Devenant met 
me as I came from my state-room and embraced me 
for the first time. I loved him, but it was only that 
affection which we have for one who has done us a 
lasting favor ; it was the love of gratitude rather than 
that of the heart. We were five weeks on the sea, 
and yet the passage did not seem long, for Devenant 
was so kind. On our arrival at Havre, we were mar- 
ried and came to Dunkirk, and I have resided here 
ever since." 

At the close of this narrative, the clock struck ten, 
when the old man, who was accustomed to retire at 
an early hour, rose to take leave, naying at the same 

"I hope you will remain with us to-night." 

Mr. Green would fain have excused himself, on 
the ground that they would expect him and wait at 
the hotel, but a look from the lady told him to ac- 
cept the invitation. The old man was the father of 
Mrs. Devenant's deceased husband, as you will no 
doubt long since have supposed. 

A fortnight from the day on which they met in the 
grave-yard Mr. Green and Mrs. Devenant were joined 
in holy wedlock; so that George and Mary, who 
had loved each other so ardently in their younger 
days, were now husband and wife. 

A celebrated writer has justly said of women: 
"A woman's whole life is a history of affections. 
The heart is her world ; it is there her ambition 
strives for empire ; it is there her avarice seeks for 



I for 

hidden treasures. She sends forth her sympathies 
on adventure ; she embarks her whole soul in the 
traffic of affection ; and if shipwrecked, her case is 
hopeless, for it is bankruptcy of the heart." 

Mary had ever reason to believe that she would 
never see George again ; and t:lthough she confessed 
that the love she bore him was never transferred to 
her first husband, we can scarcely find fault with her 
for marrying Mr. Devenant. But the adherence of 
George Green to the resolution never to marry, un- 
less to his Mary, is, indeed, a rare instance of the 
fidelity of man in the matter of love. We can but 
blush for our country's shame, when we call to mind 
the fact, that while George and Mary Green, and 
numbers of other fugitives from American slavery, 
could receive protection from any of the governments 
of Europe, they could not in safety return to their 
own land until countless treasure, untold suffering 
and anguish, and the life blood of half a million 
men, had been paid as the price of the bondman's 


r\ ■ 






DURING the decade of the thirties, and for 
years afterward, there resided on an affluent 
of the Rappahannock, in Culpepper county, Vir- 
ginia, one Solomon Jones. Mr. Jones was the in- 
heritor of an estate with all that term would imply 
fifty years ago in the " Old Dominion " — numerous 
slaves, the F. F. V. idea of domination of race, and 
those false conceptions of right begotten of "chattel " 
ownership. Though naturally possessed of many 
excellent traits of character, he was harsh and unre- 
lenting towr^rds those who sustained to him the re- 
lation of property. 

On the little stream running through his domain 
he had erected a grist mill for his own accommoda- 
tion and the profit to be derived therefrom in doing 
the work of his neighbors, and in supplying adja- 
cent towns with the product of his mill ; for Solo- 
mon had business tact and push far beyond his 
surroundings and time. 

The business of distributing his merchandise whs 
entru.sted to a mulatto named Sam, who tmveled far 
and near in the discharge of his duties, and being a 



shrewd, intelligent fellow, was enabled !•> pick up 
much valuable information relative to the ways of 
the outside world. 

The estate also possessed a blacksmith in the per- 
son of a stalwart negro, Peter, who rejoiced in no 
drop of Caucassian blood. The wife of each of these 
men was respectively the sister of the other, but 
Dinah, the wife of Sam, for some reason history has 
not recorded, was a free woman, and both families 
were childless. This fact was not at all pleasing to 
the owner of the plantation, and became the source 
of much annoyance and abuse as the master savr less 
and less prospect of replenishing his coffers from the 
sale or labor of a second generation. 

Stung by the continued upbraidings and base ad- 
vances of " Old Sol," as Jones ultimately came to he 
called, the two families began seriously to discuss 
the propriety oi emigratirtg Northward. The knowl- 
edge picked up by Sam now became available. He 
had heard much in his journeyings of the methods 
of escape, and the courses pursued, and having un- 
limited control of the teams about the mill and a 
general acquaintance for miles av/ay was, conse- 
quently, deemed the proper person to direct the es- 
cape. Acting upon his advice the women quietly 
laid in such a stock of provisions as would suffice 
them for several days, togetlier with so much of 
clothing as was deemed indispensible. Thvjs equip- 
ped, one Saturday night, in July, 1843, the men 
saddled two of the best horses on the plantation nivd 


' (.;. 






with their wives mounted behind them set out and 
by daylight were far away among the mountains to 
the northwestward. A halt was made for the day in 
a secluded ravine where some pasturage v/as found, 
and again at night they pushed vigorously on, put- 
ting two nights of fleet travel between them and the 
plantation before their flight was discovered, as the 
master and family were absent and none other hpd 
thought of inquiring into their whereabouts. 

On returning to his home on Monday, Mr, Jones 
learned of the absence of Peter from the smithy, Sam 
from his accustomed duties and the women from the 
cabins, and che conviction flashed ui)on him that he 
was minus three valuable pieces of property, and 
when the disappearance of his best horses was ascer- 
tained, his wrath knew no bounds. A plan of search 
was instituted, but before it was thoroughly organ- 
ized, two or three more days had elapsed. 

Meanwhile, the fugitives were making their way 
rapidly towards the Ohio river which they crossed 
with little difliculty a short distance below Wheeling, 
and were soon threading the hill country of South- 
eastern Ohio. Arriving in Harrison county after the 
lapse of some twenty days, they thought they might 
safely betake themselves to the more public high- 
way and to daylight. Here was their mistake, for on 
the first day of this public exhibition of confidence, 
when a few miles north of Cadiz, they looked back 
and a short distance in the rear beheld *' 01' Massa " 
and two or tliree men in pursuit. They betook 




themselves to the adjacent woods and all but Sam 
succeeded in escaping. He, poor fellow, was cap- 
tured and lodged in lail at Cadiz whilst the pursuit 
of the others was continued, but in vain ; for avoid- 
ing every human habitation and moving only under 
cover of night they pushed forward and reached the 
home of a Mr. Williams, a Quaker, residing near 
Massillon, where Sam's wife learned of his capture, 
and bidding good-bye to the others, retraced her 
foot-steps slowly to her Virginian home, expecting 
to find her husband. Not so however. 


Immediately a portion of the people of Cadiz 
found a slave had been incarcerated in the jail for 
safe keeping, whilst the master was in search of 
others, they sued out a writ of habeas corpus^ and there 
being none to appear against the prisoner or show 
ause why he should not be released, he was soon set 
rt liberty by the judge. Grown wiser by experience, 
he betook himself to the cover of forests, secluded 
pathways and darkness and all trace of him waa 
soon losto 

After a vain search for tne others, Mr. Jones re- 
turned to Cadiz ouly to find ihat the official cage had 
been opened and that his bird was flown.* His im- 
precations upon the devoted town were terril le, but 
no damage was done farther than shocking moral 
and religious sensibilities, and when the ebulitiona 
of his wrath had somewhat subsided he returned 




^ i.-' 

1" ■ 



1 i 
1 , 

• <: ■ 








I' 11 

home, where in a few days he was accosted by Sam's 
faithful Dinah, whom he most impiously rebuffed 
when she inquired as to the whereabouts of her hus- 


Infused with the hope of making a fortune out of 
the Morus morticauius speculation which spread as 
a craze over the country during the later years of the 
decade, there came to Massillon, from the east, in 
1837, Cyrus Ford, a man of progressive ideas, who 
soon associated himself with the Quakers of the 
neighborhood in acts of underground philanthropy. 
His hopes with regard to mulberry riches failed, but 
his fears with respect to the ague was more than rea- 
lized, as he imbibed the dense malarial exhalations 
arising from the Tuscarawas to such an extent as to 
shake him in his boots, and in 1841 he abandoned the 
valley and settled himself on a purchase east of what 
was then known as " Doan's Corners," now East 
Cleveland, a short distance from where Adelbert Col- 
lege stands. For years he resided in an unpreten- 
tious house situated just in front of the site of tlu; 
present hospitable home of his son, Horace Ford, 
Esq., Euclid Avenue. 

One September morning, in 1843, young Horace 
hod been started early after the cows, but scarcely 
had he left the door when, in the early dawn, he 
was hailed from the roadside. Approaching the 
caller he found standing at the gateway the Williams 



turn-out from Massillon, and on the box the old 
gentleman's son Ed, a young man about his own 

" What's up, Ed ?" said young Ford. . 

"Not much. Don't thee see the curtains are 
down? " was the reply. 

" 0, ah, I see." 

" Not exactly thee don't, for them curtains are 
opeque, but there are two persons within for whom, 
as we believe, search is now being made in town 
yonder. Massillon was thoroughly searched, and it 
was not until last evening we dared to start out. 
Thee and thy father must now provide for the poor 
beings and see them off to the Queen's Dominion." 

Without further ceremony Peter Jones and Mary, 
his wife, wore bidden to alight and in a few minutes 
were safely secreted on the premises of Mr. Ford. 


On Seneca street, in that early day, near the pres- 
ent site of the criminal court rooms stood John Bell's 
barber-shop, the more euphoneous term. " lonsorial 
parlors," being then all unknown. John was a .sterl- 
ing, wide awake darkie, and for years one of the 
principal forwarding agents in the growing city. To 
him daring the day young Ford applied for trans- 
portation for the arrival of the morning, but was 
informed that matters were entirely too hot to under- 
take their shipment at that time, but that he should 
wait until the third evening and then bring them in 





< :i 


promptly at nine o'clock and he would have every- 
thing ready for their transfer They were taken into 
the city in accordance with this arrangement and in 
thirty minutes were out on the blue waters of Erie 
duly headed for Canada. 

Scarcely three weeks had elapsed when the Wil- 
liam's establishment again stood at the gate of Mr. 
Ford, this time having brought Sam who had suc- 
ceeded after weary watchings in reaching the Quaker 
settlement at Massillon. He was anxious to tarry 
and wait the coming of his wife, who he thought 
could be duly appraised of his whereabouts by letter. 
To this end he gave young Horace the name of a 
friend to whom he could safely write and inform her 
of his escape from jail and safe arrival at the lake. 
Dr. Edwin Cowles, Jarvis F. Hanks and Cornelius 
Coakly were called in to advise in the matter and it 
was unanimously agreed that Sam should go for- 
ward, and if his wife could be found she was to be 
sent to him as soon as possible. In accordance with 
this decision Sam went to Canada, but much to the 
surprise of Mr. Ford returned in about three weeks, 
almost frantic for the recovery of his wife. A second 
letter was written, advising the unknown friend of 
Sam's whereabouts. 

Awaiting an ans\/er, Sam went to work for Mr. 
Ford chopping upon the sloping hillside a short dis- 
tance west of the site of the Garfield Monument. 
He had been engaged thus about a month when the 
Williams carriage again drove up, this time bringing 



Dinah, whose meeting with her husband was of a 
most emotional character, manifested in shouts and 
praises and thanksgiving to God, and choicest bless- 
ings called down upon the head of Horace whose 
second epistle had reach its destination, on receipt of 
which she had immediately set out on her long 
journey to join him. In a day or two the twain 
were forwarded to Canada. Immediately on their 
departure, the junior Ford mailed the following: 

Cleveland, O., Dec. — , 1843. 
Solomon Jones ^ Esq. 

Dear Sir :— I have seen your chattels, Pete, Mary and Sam, 
safe off for Canada. If I can serve you any farther, I am at 
your command. Truly, 





\-\ \ i.'a V- 

'<¥ SAY, Ed, if you get away with me, It will have 

1 to be done soon." 

" Yes, Massa Coppoe ; da's 'ginnin' to spishun you 
right smart." 

" I know that, Ed, and if you are ready to strike 
for freedom to-night, we will see what can be done. 
If not, I must be off." 

" Well, Massa, dis chiP am ready. Him no Ian' 
to sell, no truck to 'spose of, no wife an' chil'n to 
'cupy his detention, an' he 'queaths his 'sitiashun to 
any one wat wants it." 

" Very well, Ed, as soon as all is quiet, meet me at 
the shed in your Sunday best ; and now be off." 

" Suah, sartin, bof, Massa Coppoe." 

The above conversation took place about twenty 
miles back from Ohio between a young Buckeye who 
was ostensibly vending some kind of wares among 
the F. F. Vs., but really paving the way to that 
startling episode at Harper's Ferry, in which he, a 
few years later, played so conspicuous a part ; and a 
genuine descendant of Ham, after the real Virginian 



type, quaint, ungainly, and standing about six feet 
six, and rejoicing in the sobriquet, Ed. Howard. 

Coppoc had been some little time in the neighbor- 
hood, and the impression began to prevail that his 
j)vesence boded no guaranty of the retention of mov- 
avle property. This his shrewd eye had perceived, 
and his resolve to rescue Ed. led to the above con- 
versation, the conclusion of a series that had tran- 
spired between them. 


Eleven o'clock came, and with it a black cloudy 
which completely cut off all sight of the twinkling 
stars from a man who stood pensively listening, be- 
neath an old shed that stood back on the plantation, 
and from the cloud, " a still small voice saying:" "Is 
you heah, Massa Coppoc? " 

" Here, Ed., and now follow me without a word," 
saying which he led the way to a pasture field where 
two fleet horses were soon bridled and saddled, and 
the two men rode deliberately away. Once out of the 
neighborhood their speed was quickened, and long 
before daybreak the horses were turned loose a short 
distance out from Wheeling. Entering the city they 
proceeded directly to the wharf, where a boat was 
found just leaving for Pittsburgh. On this they took 
l)assage, as master and servant, for Wellsville. 

Once in the latter place, Ed. was consigned to the 
shipping department of the Road^ and young Cop- 
poc hastened to his home, near Salem, conscious that 





.!i - 





' I 




confusion would likely follow as a result of last 
night's ride. 


Daylight crept slowly over the Virginian hills, and 
when it was ascertained that Ed. and the two best 
horses were gone, there was a commotion indeed. 
A rally was at once made, and dogs and men put 
upon the track^ and about noon the horses were 
found near where they had been turned loose, but 
no trace of the fugitives could be obtained for some 
little time, owing to the hour in which they took the 
boat, but at length some one reported having seen 
two such persons take the night packet up the river. 
Taking advantage of the first steamer up, Ed's mas- 
ter hastened to Pittsburgh, where he learned of the 
debarkatioix of his property^ and returned to Wells- 
ville on the first boat. 

In the meantime there had come down from tne 
immediate vicinity of Salem, a Mr. Pennock, a black- 
smith, the owner of a small farm. Going to the 
river town several times in the year for his supi)lies, 
Mr. Pennock had fitted a long close box, opening in the 
rear, to his " running gears " and in this the bars of 
iron were thrust, frequently of such length as to pro- 
ject several feet. 

Now it so happened that the day after Ed. was 
left in Wellsville, Mr. Pennock went in for a supply 
of iron. When he had made his purchase and was 
about to return to his hotel, the dealer, who like Mr. 




Pennock, was an underground man, said, " See here. 
Pennock, I've a soft bar about six feet and a half 
long, I'd like to send up to Bonsall." 

" How much does it weigh ? " 

"About one sixty, I'd judge." 

"That will make me a deal of a load, besides I 
don't see how it can be done." 

" You can leave that to me." 

" Where is it; I'd like to see how it looks." 

" No, that will not do. It is in Excelsior Station 
and the probabilities are there will be vigorous effbrts 
made to recapture it, so you must ' eyes off.' If you 
undertake the carrying I will see to the rest." 

" All right." 

That night there was made a little readjustment of 
the wagon box, some hay and a blanket were placed 
on top of the projecting bars and there, extended at 
full length, was the form of Edward Howard, when 
in the early morning Mr. Pennock was ready to de- 

Meanwhile his master had procured from a Vir- 
ginia friend, a couple of good horses and himself as 
an assistant, and entered Wellsville on the morning 
of Mr. Pennock 's departure. Aft or a half day's fruit- 
less search with the aid of an officer, they became 
satisfied that the object of their regard had been for- 
warded, so they took the road north. Overtaking 
the old blacksmitii with his iron rattling along, they 
enquired, "Have you seen any nigger along the 










" What kind of a one was he? " 

" Why a black one with a wholly head, tall and 
slim like a d — d yankee bean jjole." 

'• Well, gentlemen, I haven't seen no such a one, 
Indeed I have seen none at all." 

" Well, have you heard of any ? " 

" I've not heard the word nigger since I left home, 
two days ago, until now." 

" Where are you from ? " 

" Salem, and like enough you'll find him ther^, 
for they say them Bonsalls keeps a power of r 

" Well, we're going up to see. Good day, sir." 

" Good day, gentleman," and each party pursued 
its way. 

That night Pennock stayed at the " Old Buckeye 
House," New Lisbon, the wagon was run into the 
barn, and at a proper hour the " soft bar " was taken 
out and placed in the hay-mow, " to prevent rust," as 
the blacksmith facetiously remarked to his friend 
Boniface. The next day on arriving home, he 
learned his interlocutors had preceded him some 
hours, and were registered at one of the taverns as 
cattle buyers or drovers rather, where young Coppoc 
had caught a glimpse of them, and informed his 
friends of their real character. 

On the morrow the pseudo dealers called on a 
neighboring farmer and desired to be introduced 
among the best stock raisers of the vicinity. 

" Thee had better be leaving these parts, gentlemen," 



said the honest Quaker, to whom the aj)})eal 
was made. "If thee knows when thee is well off, 
for thy errand is understood, and thee will have the 
Coppocs and the Bonsalls down on thee in an hour, 
and I could not at^sure thy lives for a moment when 
they come." 

There was no parly, but two horses were headed 
southward, and none too soon, for in a short time 
half a dozen young men armed to the teeth, rode up 
and inquired for the strangers . When informed of 
their departure they started in pursuit. Then be- 
gan one of the most exciting races ever witnessed in 
Columbian county. The pursued had smelled mis- 
chief in the air, and away they flew, and after them 
the pursuers, dashing over hill and across valley, 
occasionally catching glimpses of each other, until 
the whole distance to the Ohio was passed. Reach- 
ing Gardiner's Ferry, at East Liverpool, the South- 
erners put their jaded horses aboard the boat and 
were soon on the sacred soil of Virginia. When 
Gardiner returned the other party was in waiting, but 
reluctantly took his advice to remain on the soil of 
their native state. 



M : 



All apprehension of immediate danger removed, 
Ed., who, by the advice ol Coppoc, assumed the 
name " Sam," remained quietly at Mr. Pennock's for 
some time, in fact, made it his headquarters for the 
winter, working for his boarcl and doing odd jobs. 



'fii 1- 

m I 





1 1 

from the proceeds of which he purchased some 
clothes and a long smooth-bore rifle, of which he 
was passionately fond, and with which he practiced 
much, often repeating, " I shall put a hole through 
the man suah, who comes to claim that 'wa'd," for 
the whole region from the river to the lake had been 
flooded with bills minutely describing him and 
offering $500 for his apprehension. 

When spring fairly opened he made up his mind 
to seek the Queen's Dominion as rapidly as possible, 
and accordingly packed his few effects in a bandana, 
threw " Tection," as he called his smooth-bore, 
across his shoulder, and proceeded cautiously north- 

Arriving at Warren, he sought the home of a 
colored family that had been pointed out to him as 
a safe retreat. Approaching the dcor, he heard a 
number of voices, which he recognized by the melody 
as being of his kind, singing with great gusto : 

" Matthew's saint 

Without putty or paint, 
And Joel's a prophet, we know it ; 

Whatever they say 

Don't refuse tc obey. 
But shut up your c^cs and go it," 

words perpetrated by one John Morley on two dis- 
tinguished local politicians of the Democratic per- 
suasion of the period of '56, and very popular as 
jiart of a campaign song. 

Fully assured by the style of the singing, Sam, the 



only name he now recognized, made his presence 
known and was cordially received by the colored 
brethren present, among them the distinguished 
tonsorial artist. Prof. A. L. (1 Day, and Benjamin F. 
Scott, familiarly known as " Old Ben," a darkey 
whose cupidity and avarice knew no bounds. Rec- 
ognizing in Sam, as he believed, the Edward Howard 
of the handbill, he began planning for the reward. 

Ascertaining what was up, Dr. D. B. Woods and 
Postmaster Webb, two sterling Democrats, got pos- 
session of Sam and took him to a by-road about two 
miles out of town, where they enjoined him to keep 
away from the more public highways and proceed 
about twenty miles north where he would find a 
colored man named Jenkins, in whom he could rely. 

Whilst the doctor and his friend were thus 
humanely engaged, the colored brethren of Warren 
took Old Ebony out of town and so severely flogged 
him that his back prasented the appearance of a 
genuine plantation administration. Determined to 
realize something for his time and pains, the old sin- 
ner proceeded to the northern part of tlie county 
and palmed himself off as a genuine fugitive, and so 
adroitely did he play the role as to secure twelve or 
fifteen dollars before the counterfeit was detected. 

As for Sam, he took the advice of his Democratic 
deliverers, and in due time found himself under the 
liospitable roof of " Nigger " Jenkins, as he was more 
conmionly called, residing in the township of Meso- 
potania, and by him was forwarded to the home of 
Joseph Tinan, i^.ear the centre of Rome. 







" Uncle Joe " was a famo\is agent in his day. 
Tall and imposing in appearance, and of more than 
ordinary intelligence, he commanded universal re- 
spect, and so pronounced were his opinions on the 
curse of slavery that his home had long been recog- 
nized as " Old Reliable Station." By him Sam was 
cordially received, and his arm carefully inspected. 
Then the old gentleman would have Sam make an 
exhibition of his skill as a marksman. So well did 
the efforts of his temporary ward please him, that 
Uncle Joe was constrained to show him the armory 
of the " Black String Band," an organization that 
had then but recently sprung into existence and hav- 
ing for its more immediate object the protection of 
John BrowUj should his arrest be attempted. The 
distinctive badge of this band was a small black cord, 
used instead of a button in fastening the shirt collar. 
Hence the name. 

The sight of thd glittering barrels made Sam's 
eyes fairly dance with delight, and he exclaimed, 
"Masea Coppoc say thay's gwine to be wah an' de 
cullud pussons will all be free." 

" O no, Sam, there's going to be no war. These 
guns are for another purpose." 

Little did Uncle Joe, well as he was posted, know 
of the ultimate plans of Old Ossawattomie. His 
dusky visitor was even a little in advance of him 
with regard to what was already fomenting in Dixie. 

In the northwest part of Andover, Ohio, resides an 
old patriarch, Jehaziel Carpenter, familiarly known 




J day. 
5 than 
al re- 
>n the 
n was 
ake an 
ell did 
[1, that 
a that 
id hav- 
tion of 
k cord, 

L an' de 


I, know 
e. His 
of him 
1 Dixie. 
jides an 

as "the Deacon," now numbering his over ninety 
summers. For over sixty years he has tenanted on 
the same farm, and his home has ever been one of 
the broadest hospitality, and to none more so than 
to the panting fugitive. Just a little way off stands 
the rather tall, old-fashioned country house of his 
former neighbor, Garlic, whose language never be- 
trayed the fact that he had any official church rela- 
tion. In fact we think his name, significant as it 
was, had no place on the muster roll of the church 
militant, and yet he was game in many a hard fight 
for truth and righteousness. 


Cleveland and vicinity was flooded with circulars, 
advertising a man, wife and child, who hcid been 
traced to that city, and offering a large reward for 
their delivery to the reputed owner. Friend and foe 
were alike on the lookout. Efforts were making by 
the one to secure them a passage across the lake, 
whilst the other was as assidiously watching every 
vessel to prevent their escape. 

Thus matters stood when the man, Martin by 
name, looking out of an upper window, espied his 
master among the passers by on Water street. Tliis 
))eing communicated to those who had them in 
charge, it was at once determined the family should 
not be shipped by lake. 

That night, when all was quiet and still, a close car- 
riage passed out Pittsburgh street, and before daylight 






Martin and his wife were in safe quarters near 
Chagrin Falls. Thence they were taken the next 
night to the home of Mr. Cook, in Middlefield, and 
as rapidly transmitted by him to a pious old dea- 
con's in Gustavus. 


Night had settled down over village and farm 
house; Deacon Jehaziel's evening prayers had been 
said and he was quietly dreaming of the time 

** When you and I were young, Maggie," 
and Garlic, just retrrned from Jefferson, had turned 
his horse into the pasture, when up to the door of 
each came a vehicle. Garlic at once recognized the 
horse of the old Baptist Boanerges, Tinan, from 
Rome, whilst the deacon was aroused by the quieter 
voice of his Congregational brother from Gustavu ;. 
What transpired from this time until the city of Erie 
was reached is buried in the tombs of Garlic, a Hay- 
ward, a Gould and a Drury. 


In the township of Harbor Creek, Pa., east of the 
city of Erie, and a short distance out of Wesleyville, 
was the farm house of Frank Henry, a man of 
medium size, black hair, eyes of the same hue and 
sparkling like diamonds, nervous temperament, 
quick, wiry and the soul of honor and generosity. 
For a young man he was one of the best known and 
most ethcient conchictor-agents in Western Pennsyl- 
vania. About mid-summer, 1858, he received the 
following note:— 



m I 

1 near 
3 next 
d, and 
d dea- 

l farm 
,d been 


door of 

Lzed the 

1, from 



of Erie 

a Hay- 

, of the 


Iman of 

ue and 



wn and 


ed the 

Erie, Pa., 51, 7, 5881. 

Dear Frank: 

The mirage lifts Long Point into view. Oooo. Come up 
and see the beautiful sight. I can't promise a view to- 
morrow. Truly, 

Jehiel Towner. 

That evening found Mr. Henry early in the pres- 
ence of Mr. Towner, inquiring diligently as to the 
great natural phenomenon which had brought the 
land of the Canucks so distinctly to view. 

" Yes, yes, it became visible last night about 
twelve o'clock, when Drury's team came in from 
Girard bearing three fugitives. They are down in the 
" Retreat Himrod," and must be put across the lake 
in the shortest and safest possible manner, for parties 
in town are on the lookout for them, as all are 
liberally advertised. I believe you are just the man 
to undertake the transportation. Will you do it?" 

" Are they to go from the ' Retreat,' as usual? " 

" Not as usual. So close a watch is kept for them 
that it is thought best to send them off and have 
them shipped from some point along the beach." 

" There's a big risk, Towner." 

'* Yes, a chance to pay a thousand dollars and see 
the inside of the ' Webtern ' without charge. But 
you know you are to have nothing to do with run- 
away niggers. I will just send you some ' passen- 
gers' to forward. Shall they be sent? " 

" I shrink from no humanitarian work. Let them 








A few preliminaries were settled and the parties 
separated. The next night Hamilton Waters, a 
nearly blind mulatto, long a resident of Erie, guided 
by a little boy, drove into Mi. Henry's yard and un- 
loaded a cargo which the receiver thus describes: 

" The old man brought me three of the strangest 
looking passengers you ever saw. I can, to-day. 
remember how oddly they looked as they clambered 
out of the w^agon. There was a man they called Sam, 
a great stra})ping fellow, something over thirty years 
old, I should say. He was loose jointed, with a 
head like cT pumpkin and a mouth like a cavern, its 
vast circumference always stretched in a glorious 
grin; for no matter how bad Sam might feel, the 
grin had so grown into his black face that it never 
vanished. I remember how, a few nights after, when 
the poor fellow was scared just about out of his wits, 
that his grin, though a little ghastly, was as broad as 
ever. Sam was one of the queerest characters I ever 
met. His long arms seemed like wrists, his long 
legs all ankles; and when he walked his nether limbs 
had a flail-like flop that made him look like a run- 
away windmill. The bases upon which rested this 
fearfully and wonderfully made superstructure were 
abundantly ample. Unlike the forlorn hope who 

' One stocking on one foot he had, 
The other on a shoe,' 

he on one foot wore an old shoe — at least a number 
twelve — and on the other an enormously heavy boot, 
and his trouser-legs, by a grim fatility, were similarly 





ters, a 
md un- 

ed Sam, 
ty years 
with a 
vern, its 
feel, the 
it never 
3r, when 
his wits, 
road as 
8 I ever 
is long 
er limbs 
e a run- 
ted this 
re were 

Lvy boot, 

unbalanced, for while the one was tucked in the 
boot-top, its fellow, from knee down, had wholly 
vanished. Sam wore a weather-beaten and brimless 
' tile ' on his head, and carried an old-fashioned, 
long-barrelled rifle. He set great store by hjs ' ole 
smooth bo',' though he handled it in a gingerly kind 
of a way that suggested a greater fear of its kicks 
than confidence in its aim. 

Sam's companions were an intelligent-looking 
negro about twenty-five, named Martin, and his 
wife, a pretty quadroon girl with thin lips and a 
pleasant voice, for all the world like Eliza in Uncle 
Tom's Cabin. She carried a plump little picanniny 
on her breast, over which a shawl was slightly 
drawn. She was an uncommonly attractive young 
woman, and I made up my mind then and there 
that she shouldn't be carried back to slavery if I 
could help it. 

As there was close pursuit, station " Sanctum 
Sanctorum '' was again called into rcc^uisition, though 
as it was summer, no draft was made on the church 
wood-pile. Here they were kept for several days, 
none knowing of their whereabouts except two inti- 
mate friends of Mr. Henry, whose house being under 
nightly espionage necessitated their assistance. 

Through Wesleyville runs a little stream, Four- 
mile Creek, to the lake, and nearly parallel to it a 
public highway. From the mouth of this creek it 
was proi)osed to ship the fugitives to Long Point, 
Canada, a distance of some thirty-five or forty miles, 





but for some days the wind was unfavorable. At 
length one dark and stormy night Mr. Henry re- 
ceived notice that the wind was favorable and a boat 
in readiness. 

What was to be done ? It would not do for him 
to take anything from his house, that would excite 
suspicion ; the same would be true if he went to the 
houses of his friends. Bethinking himself of an 
honest Jacksonian Democrat, a man with a generous 
heart, residing about half way down to the lake, he 
decided to take a venture. Proceeding to the old 
church he formed the little party in single file and 
marched them through the rain to the door of this 
man, familiarly known as " General '' Kilpatrick, a 
man of giant proportions, and afterwards sheriff of 
Erie county. 

Rap, rap, rap, went the knuckels of the leader 
against the door, which soon stood wide ajar, reveal- 
ing the proprietor with a thousand interrogation 
points freezing into his face that July night, as he 
paused for a moment, one hand holding aloft a can- 
dle wliilst the other shaded his eyes as he peered out 
upon the wet and shivering crowd gathered about 
his doorway, the very picture of dumfounded as- 
tonishment. The situation was soon grasp jd; he 
hustled the party into the house, gave the door a 
significant slam and in a pious air that would have 
startled even Peter Cartwright, exclaimed, " Henry, 
what in hell does this mean ? " 

" It means," General, replied Mr. Henry, " these 





ry re- 
a boat 

)r him 
, to the 
of an 
ake, he 
the old 
lie and 
of this 
itrick, a 
eriff of 

t, as he 
t a can- 
red out 
1 about 
ded as- 
od; he 
door a 
lid have 

are a party of fugitives from slavery I am about 
sending to Canada ; they are destitute, as you can 
see, and closely pursued ; their only crime is a desire 
for freedom; that young woman and mother has 
been sold from her husband and child to a dealer in 
the far South for the vilest of purposes, and if recap- 
tured will be consigned to a life of shame." 

Meanwhile the woman's eyes were pleading elo- 
quently^ whilst a dubious grin overspread the entire 
of Sam's ebony phiz, and the host looked assumedly 
fierce and angry as he retorted " Well, what the d — I 
do you want of me ? " 

" Clothing and provisions." 



"You do, do you?" came back in tunes even 
gruffer than before. " See here you darkies, this is a 
bad job. Canada is full of runaway niggers already. 
They're a-freezin' and a-starvin' by thousands. Why, 
I was over there t'other day, and saw six niggers 
dead by the roadside. More'n forty were strung up 
in the trees with the crows feedin' on their black 
carcasses," aiid turning to Sam, " Vou better go back, 
d'ye /tear / They'll make your black hide into razor 
strops 'nless than a week. I paid a dollar for one 
made from a black nigger. They're sending hun- 
dreds of them across the sea every week." 

During this harangue, Sam was shaking in his 
footgear and his eyes rolled widely on the back- 
ground of that inexpressible grin. His fingers 
clutched convulsively his shooting-iron, and he evi- 
dently didn't know which to do, turn it upon his 

1 !« 1 

■I -j| 

i.'l ; 

•} il 




Democratic entertainer or keep his " powder dry " 
for Canuck crows. The woman caught, through 
this assumed roughness, the inner heart of the man, 
and though she shuddered at the pictures drawn, 
and the possibilities of a grave in the lake, yel she 
preferred that, or even to be food for the vultures of 
Canada, to return to an ignominious servitude. 

Then came a strange medley: Blanket and hood 
— "there, the huzzy" — a basket of provisions — 
" d — m me if I'll ever help a set of runaway niggers, 
no sir, it's agin my religion" — off came his own coat 
and was hurled at the astonished Sam with, " There 
you black imp, you'll find 'em on the Pint waitin' 
for ye ; they'll catch ye and kill ye and skin yer car- 
cass for a scare-crow and take yer hide for a drum 
head, and play ' God save the Queen ' with your 
bones. Yes, sir, I shall see them long shanks con- 
verted into drum-sticks the next time I go over." 

All else being done, he thrust his hands into his 
pockets and drawing thence a quantity of change be- 
stowed it upon the woman, exclaiming, " There, take 
that; it will help bury the baby, if you will go. 
Better go back, you huzzy ; better go back." 

Everything ready, the party was shoved out, but 
as he passed over the threshold, Sam's tongue was 
loosened, and with the smile all the time deepening, 
and the great tears rolling down his sable cheeks, he 
broke forth • 

" Look 'e hyar, Massa, you's good to we uns, an' 
fo* de Lo'd I tank you. Ef enny No'then gemmen 



dry " 
ei she 
ires of 

L hood 
ons — 
n coat 
er car- 
:8 con- 

ito his 
ige be- 
e, take 
all go. 

ut, but 
ue was 
eks, he 

ns, an* 

hankah fur my chances in the Souf I'zins in favor 
ob de same. For de good Lo'd, I tank you, I do 

" Hist, you black rascal." said the man in the 
doorway, " And see here, Henry, remember you 
never were at my house with a lot of damned niggers 
in the night. Do you understand? " 

" All right, sir. No man will ever charge you 
with abolitionism. If he does, call on me. I can 
swear you denounce it in most unmeasured terms." 

The rain had now ceased ; the stars were out and 
the party trudged rapidly down to the lake, caring 
little for the mud and wet. The boat was found in 
waiting, and Martin and his wife had just waded out 
to it when Henry and Sam, standing on the shore, 
had their attention attracted by a noise, as the crush- 
ing of a fence-board, and looking to the westward 
they saw a man sliding down the bank into the 
shadow. Old " 'tection " was immediately brought 
to aim, so exact that had Henry not struck the barrel 
upward just as the trigger was pulled, sending the 
ball whistling in the air, there could not have failed 
a subject for a " first-class funeral." The sneak took 
to his heels, Sam took to the boat, and Henry stood 
long upon the shore peering into the darkness, 
catching the rich, mellow tones of Mrs. Martin's voice 
as she warbled forth in real negro minstrelsy, inter- 
rupted by an occasional " 'lujah " from Sam as the 
boat receded, 


" There is a railrod undergroun* 

On which de negroes lope, 
An' when dey gets dare ticket 

Dare hearts is full ob hope ; 
De engine nebber whistles 

An' de cars dey make no noise, 
But dey carry off de darkies, 

Dare wives, an' girls, an' boys." 

Returning homeward, Mr. Henry traced the hu- 
man sleuth-hound by his footsteps in the mud, the 
nibbling of his horses where they had been left, and 
the marks of his carriage wheels at Wesleyville 
where they turned toward Erie, and were lost in the 
new made tracks of the early morning marketers. 

Time passed ; the years of the war came and went ; 
peace smiled upon the country; John Brown and 
young Coppoc slept beneath sodded mounds, whilst 
the soul of the former went " marching on," and the 
genial, generous Henry was keeping the lighthouse 
on the eastern extremity of Presque Isle, at the en^ 
trance of Erie harbor or bay. Going over to the city 
one day he received a letter bearing the Dominion 
post mark. It was without date, and with some 
difficulty he deciphered the following : 

Dere Ser, Mistur Henri-' 

I'ze glad ter bee abul to rite ye. I'ze dun wel sens dat 
nite. I'ze got a wife an' chilin'. De lor sen me into de ile 
kentry bress him and Sam make sum muni. I sen to yer a 

N-f ; 



draf for 100 dollars gib fift to de men in de bote an' kepe 50 
fo' buks fo' you one selfe tel de kros man Sam feah no kro 
*oz no razr strap, tank de lor. 

Your lubbin fren Sam, 

wo wuz Edwud Howud. 





C HA 'LEY, I say Cha'ley, a' my chirns gone 
'cept you, and MasG.i's done gone an' sol' 
you, and I'll nebber see you 'gin in a' dis bressed 
wuT, nebber ! nebber ! " 

''Guess not, mudder; ol' Massa promised you 
when he put de udders in de coffie to keep me 

" Yes, Cha'ley, dat am so, but dis bery mornin' I 
hear 'im tell dat unspec'ble trader he'll sen' you to 
him Monday mornin' shu'ah, an' dat he mus' put 
yer in jail till he start de drove fur down de riber. 
May de Lor' help yer my chil' when yer ol' mudder's 
ha't am clean broke." 

" De Lor' help you, mudder ; dis chil' help hisself, 
so jus' gib me my dinnah, mudder, fo' I mus go to 
de fiel' to do Massa's arran' to de boss." 

Had the ear of the reader been present in the little 
back kitchen of a fine plantation residence in Loudon 
county, Virginia, in the autumn of 1855, the above 
conversation might have been heard between a 
colored woman rather past middle life and her son, 
an athletic young man of about twenty years of age, 



' I 


to to 




m a 


as they conversed in low tones. The woman had 
long been the cook in the family and had lived to 
see her husband and all her children except Charley, 
the youngest, sold for the southern market, joined in 
the coffle like so many beasts and driven away. 

To alleviate her agony, she had been promised that 
Charley should ever remain with her, and resting in 
this promise she had toiled unrepiningly on, whilst 
the growing lad had been kept as a kind of boy-of- 
all chores about the house, going occasionally, as a 
kind of body servant with his master to Washington, 
Baltimore and Wheeling, thus being enabled, by 
close observation, to pick up a little general knowl- 

Thus things nad passed until the morning of the 
day in question, when she accidently overheard the 
sale of the boy, and with an aching heart communi- 
cated the news to him as he came to the kitchen as 
usual for his dinner. How earnestly her mother's 
heart may have }>raye(l that tlie Lord would oi)en up 
a way of escai)e for her darling boy no one can tell, 
neitlier does it matter, for no sooner was the fart ol' 
the sale communicated to him than the mental re- 
solve of the youth was taken to effect an escape. 

The frugal dinner was dispatched in silence, the 
mission to the field duly executed and a prompt re- 
turn thereof made, much to the satislaction of the 




*- f 



Night, sable goddess, had spread her curtain over 
earth, and the valleys amid the AUeghenies were 
sleeping in quiet, when Charley, crawling from his 
couch, so stealthily, indeed, as not to disturb the 
early slumbers of his mother, crept softly to the 
stable, saddled his master's best steed, noiselessly led 
it to the public highway beyond the mansion, and, 
turning its head toward the renlm of freedom, 
mounted, and giving the noble beast the rein, was 
soon moving with such velocity as to place fifty miles 
between him and his master and mother by the time 
the first gray tinge of morning began to break along 
the eastern hills. Riding deep into a wooded ravine 
he secured the horse for the day, and then betook 
himself to sleep. At evening he unloosed the beast 
stripping it of saddle and bridle, and then betook 
himself to the woods and by-ways, shunning all 
towns and subsisting on green corn and such fruits 
as he could find for a period of fifteen days, when, 
weary and forlorn, he entc ed Wheeling just before 
daylight. An utter stranger, and almost perisning 
with hunger, he knew not what to do, but seeing a 
light in the bar-room of the City Hotel he resolved 
to enter, hoping to find some attendant of his own 
race, to whom he could apj)eal for food and assist- 
ance across the river. Instead of an attache, the 
landlord was himself already astir. Though resid- 
ing on sacred soil and in many respecta a typical 


r^^^i . 




I over 
a his 
b the 
5 the 
L, and, 
a, was 
e time 
. along 
[ig all 
elng a 
is own 
ic, the 


Virginian, mine host kept only hired servants, and 
though in no wise disposed to discuss the merits of 
the peculiar institrition pro or con, he was often able 
to make wise suggestions to the thoughtless or incon- 
siderate of both sections who might temporarily be 
his guests. 

Once fairly within and under the scrutinizing 
gaze of this man, Charley made bold to ask for bread. 

"Bread, you want, do you, you black runaway?" 
said the landlord rather roughly. 

" I'ze no runa— '' 

"Yes you are you black rascal. Come go with 
me and I'll show you something. 

Instinctively following the footsteps of the land- 
lord, Charley was led to the stable where he recog- 
nized at once his master's horse. Then the man 
took a paper from his poeket and read a complete 
description of him, ir id closed by saying: "You are 
this Charloy and your master will give S500 to any 
man who a U return you." 

Seeing he ^vas caught, Charley pleaded, " Lor,' 
Massa, doan gib me up." 

" No, I'll not ; your master ia close at hand. Do 
you see that house across the lot yonder? " 

" Yes, Massa, I sees." 

" Well, you go there quick. Tell them I sent you 
and that they must take care of you. Go right in 
at the back door. Be quick or you'll be caught." 

With both heart and feet a-bound, Charley made 
for the designated place. He found only a woman, 





sick upon her bed. Ere he had fairly made his 
errand known, there was heard the sound of horses' 
feet upon the street, and looking out, Charley saw his 
master and another man coming at full speed, and 
began to cry. 

"Get under the bed, quick, and keep perfectly 
still," said the woman; a command which was 
obeyed without questioning. Catching up her baby, 
the woman gave it a tumble which set it to crying 
like mad. Just then the master thrust his head in 
at the door and inquired, " Have you seen a young 
nigger come in here ? " 

"Hush h-u!" "Wah ka-wa!" "What did!" 
"Wha-ka wa wal" "hush there — did you say?" 
" Ka-wha wa wah." 

" I say did " — " ka wha ka wha wa 1 " " did you 
see a young nigger come in here ? " 

" We wha ke wah wa I " " hush-t-h-e-re I " — " hus- 
band is " — " we wa wah ! " — " at the barn ! " — " we 
wa ah!" — "he can tell you 1 " — " wa we wah ke 
wha!" and the door was slammed to by the dis- 
gusted Southeron. 

Whilst the trio were hastening to the barn, 
Charley, in obedience to the woman's directions, 
hastily ascended a ladder in the corner of the room, 
which he drew up, and placed a board in such a 
way as to obliterate all appearance of an opening in 
the floor. 

The conference at the bam was short, and away 
went the riders u\) the road in hot pursuit of a 






of a 

mythical nigger the man at the barn had seen run- 
ning in that direction not half an hour before. 

In a few minutes the husband returned to the 
house, milk pail in hand, but entirely ignorant of 
what had transpired within. " What about the boy, 
wife, those men were enquiring about? I supposed 
they were in pursuit of some one, so I sent them up 
the road after an imaginary man," he said. 

" Well, I don't know anything about your imagi- 
nary man, but I know about the boy," replied the 

'^ Well, where is he?" 

" He went from under my bed up the ladder 
whilst the men were going for you. Bal)y heli)ed 
the matter mightily. Now you must carry the poor 
fellow something to eat." 

As soon as it was deemed safe, the ladder was let 
down, and Charley was supplied with a hearty 
breakfast, and then bidden to make himself com- 
fortable for the day, a thing he was not slow to do, 
as he had sle})t little since his flight began. When 
evening came, he was called down, and after a 
bountiful supper, which was dispatched in silence, 
he was taken to the road where three horses were 
, standing. On one of these a man was already 
seated ; the second Charley was bidden to mount, 
and into the saddle of the third his kind host 

Moving around the town, they came to a road 
leading northward, Charley's feelings alternately 




ebbing and flowing between fear and hope, for, not- 
withstanding the kindness of his host and hostess, 
he could but fear that he was to be given up for the 

Proceeding some distance up the river, the horses 
were hitched in some bushes and the party de- 
scended to the river, where a boat was loosened and 
Charley was bidden to enter. When all were seated, 
the little craft pushed out into the stream, and soon 
Charley and his host stepped onto the other shore. 
Going up the bank into a public highway, the man 
placed in his hands some little articles of clothing 
and some bread, and then, pointing with the index 
finger, said : " Yonder is the North Star ; you are 
now in a free state and may go forward ; may God 
bless you ; good-by ; " and before Charley, in his 
astonishment, could utter a word, he was gone. A 
few moments the fugitive stood in a reverie which 
was broken by the splash of the oar in the river be- 
low, and he awoke to the consciousness that he was 
again alone. On the one hand was the beautiful 
river, whose outline he could dimly see; on the 
other were far reaching fields, with no habitation 
looming up in the darkness, and above him was the 
star bespangled sky, among whose myriad twinklers 
he looked in vain for the one vvhich had so recently 
been pointed out to him. Alas, the defectiveness of 
his education! whilst others of his kind had been 
diligent in securing a definite knowledge of this 
loadstone of the Heavens, he had been happy in the 



discharge of the light duties of his cliildhoc I home, 
never once thinking of flight until the fact of his sale 
was broken to him by his mother, and then there 
was no time for schooling. The dazed condition in 
which he now found himself from the revelations of 
the past hour caused him to look up to the starry 
firmament as into vacancy, finding nothing with 
which to guide himself. At length he proceeded a 
short distance, but becoming bewildered he sat down 
and soon fell asleep and dreamed that two men 
came and were putting him in jail. His struggles 
and resistance wakened him, and he set out and 
proceeded as best he could in the darkness. Just at 
daylight he espied a piece of paper nailed to a fence. 

Approaching it he perceived it had upon it the 
picture of a negro running, and in every way looked 
like the one the landlord had shown him in the 
barn. Whilst standing thus before the picture, 
wrapped in thought as to what to do next, he feit a 
hand laid upon his shoulder, and turning saw a man 
with a very broad-brimmed hat and so peculiarly 
clothed as he had never seen one before. He was 
about to run when the man said: "Stop, friend, 
thee need not run. What have we here?" and 
reading the bill, he at once remarked : *' Why, 
friend, this means thee, and thy master is ready to 
pay any man $500, who will })lace thee in his hands. 
Come with me or somebody may enrich himself at 
thy expense." 

There was somethincr so kind and frank in the 


1 60 



manner and words of the man that Charley followed 
him to a retreat deep in the woods. Seeing that he 
had bread with him, the stranger said : " Keep 
quiet and I will bring thee more food to-night," and 
immediately left. 

As was customary in other cases, hand-bills min- 
utely describing Charley had been widely distributed, 
and, of course, read by everybody, and it being a 
free country everybody had a right to apply the in- 
formation gained as he saw fit. So it was that when 
Charley's master crossed into Ohio twelve hours after 
his chattel, and proceeded northward, he found no 
lack of persons who had seen just such a person that 
very day. Even our friend of the early morning de- 
scribed him minutely and had seen him wending 
his way into the interior only a few hours before, 
bearing with him a little bundle. As the route at 
this season of the year was supposed to be towards 
Sandusky or DeUoit, the pursuers were decoyed on 
by the way of CarroUton, Allian and Ravenna 
towards the lake, by the smooth stories of men who 
had seen him only a day or two before — but only on 
paper. Wearied, however, they at length committed 
his capture to the hands of the organized set of biped 
hounds which infested the whole south shore froui 
Detroit to Buflalo, and returned homeward. 

When Charley's friend returned to him in the 
evening, he informed him of the little interview he 
had had with his master, and that it would be neces- 
sary for him to remain some time in his charge. 





' J 




He was consequently taken to a more comfortable 
hiding place, and after the lapse of some three weeks 
was forwarded by way of New Lisbon, Poland, and 
Indian Run, to Meadville, and thence by way of 
Cambridge and Union to the parsonage at Wattsburg. 


The traveler who has been swept along on the Nickle 
Plate or Lake Shore Rail Road over the Black Swamp 
country and onward through Cleveland, Ashtabula 
and Erie, seeing little that savors of roughness, ex- 
cept perchance the gulches about the Forest City, the 
bluffs at Euclid and Little Mountain in the distance, 
would little think as he crosses the unpretentious 
bridges spanning Six-Mile-Creek, east of Erie, that 
just a little way back it passed through some wild 
and rugged country; yet such is the fact. Down 
through a deep gorge come its crystal waters, whilst 
high above them on its precipitate banks the hem- 
lock has cast its somber shadows for centuries. Into 
a thin, scarcelv accessible portion of this gorge came 
years ago John Cass, and took possession of a primi- 
tive "carding works," where he diligently plied his 
craft, rearing his sons and daughters to habits of in- 
dustry, frugality, virtue, and a love of their little 
church, which is situated some two miles away on an 
elevated plateau, which, from its largely Celtic popu- 
lation has acquired the appelation of " Wales." 

The little Celts of this rural community were very 
much surprised one winter day to see their old pastor, 




Parson Rice, who resided at Wattsburg, go dash- 
ing by the school-house with a colored man in his 
sleigh. Never before had their unsophisticated eyes 
seen such a sight, and what they that day beheld 
was the all-engrossing theme in the homes of the 
Joneses the Williamses and the Davises that night. 

As for Parson Rice, he kept right on down, down, 
until he reached the carding works of his worthy 
parishioner, where the woolly head of Charley was 
safely hidden amid fleeces of a far whiter hue. 

In this retreat he remained for some time, and 
was taught his letters by the young Casses, William, 
Edward, Jane and the others. When, at length, it 
was deemed safe to remove him, he was taken by 
Mrs. Cass to the office of the True America?! in the 
city. From this, after a little delay, he was con- 
veyed to the home of Col. Jas. Moorhead, who passed 
him on to Parson Nutting, at State Line, by whom 
he was duly forwarded to Knowlton Station, West- 
field, New York. 

Though the temperature was below zero, it was 
again getting hot for Charley, for vigilant eyes all 
along the line were watching for the young nigger 
whose return to his master was sure to bring $500, 
and that he had reached the lake shore was now a 
well ascertained fact, and unusual activity was 
noticed among the kidnapping crew. 

It was a bitter cold day, with the snow flying and 
drifting, that Mr. Knowlton 's spanking team of jet 
blacks, still well remembered by many a Westfielder, 



) dash- 
i in his 
,ed eyes 
of the 
I, down, 
ey was 


ne, and 
sngth, it 
iken by 
I in the 
as con- 
) passed 
' whom 
I, West- 

came out of his yard attached to a sleigh, in the bot- 
tom of which was a package evidently of value, as it 
was carefully covered with blankets and robe. 
Under a tight rein the team headed eastward, and 
with almost the fleetness of the wind passed Port- 
land, Brocton, and turning at the old Pemberton 
stand, in Fredonia, made Pettit Station. Here 
Charley was made safe and happy for the night, and 
the next day was landed safely in the Queen's 
Dominion from Black Rock. 

it was 
5yes all 
; nigger 
Lg S500, 

now a 
ty was 

ng and 
a of jet 





»/# II 








IT was in the decade of the forties that an enter- 
prising farmer, named Barbour, of the Empire 
State, said to his neighbor, '' Smitn, IVe a project in 
?ny head." 

"Nothing strange in that," was the response ; " I 
never knew the time when you didn't have one ; but 
what is it? " 

" Weil, you know I spent a few days about Wash- 
ington recently, and I believe there is money to be 
made in going into its vicinity and buying up some 
of the worn-out farms and applying to them our 
agricultural methods, ana raising products specially 
for the city market." 

" What can they be purchased for ? " 

"Anywhere from 85.00 to 810.00 an acre, any 
amount of them. I toll you there's money in it." 

" But it would be to ostracise one's self. You 
know that there they consider it a disgrace lor a 
white man to labor." 

"All right. All I propose is head work." 

" How is that? Democrat as you are, I don't 
believe you would go so far as to invest in slaves." 

ject in 

se ; '^ I 
e ; but 

' to be 
im our 

e, any 

I tor a 





" No, indeed. I am fully satisfied that slavery is 
the curse of the South, yet it exists there, and 1 am 
bound to make some money out of it and its fruits. 
You see the land has been rendered worthless by 
slave labor in the hands of the masters, hence the 
extremely low price of it. i.o a result of the deterio- 
rated condition of their farms, the owners of slaves 
are now hiring them out for wages which range 
much lower than with us here in New York. Whilst 
loathing slavery in the abstract, I confess I propose 
to use it for a while on wages, if some of my neigh- 
bors will join me in a purchase, so we can have a 
little society of our own. V/ill you take a hand, 

"I'll think of it." 

As a result of the above conversation there were 
purchased in a few weeks seven or eight worn-out 
farms in the immediate vicinity of Washington, and 
in a short time they were occupied by as many sterl- 
ing families from Onondaga county, N. Y. Modern 
methods of agriculture were applied, fertilizers were 
abundantly used, and though slave labor was ex- 
tensively employed the fields soon yielded luxuri- 
antly, and everything was at high tide with the new- 
comers, disturbed only by the twinges of conscience 
at the emj)loyment of southern chattel. 

Among those who furnished these, was a Mr 
Lines, residing just across the Potomac, in Virginia. 
Of him Mr. Barbour hired a number of slaves, among 
them a './oman named Static, nearly white, wlio was 






1 66 


the mother of an amiable little girl six or seven years 
of age, bearing a close resemblance to the children 
belonging in the Lines mansion. This woman had 
the privilege of hiring herself out on condition of 
paying her master $10 per month and clotning her- 
self and child. This she did cheerfully, laying by 
what she could, under the hope of being shh ulti- 
mately to buy the freedon of her little girl, Lila, who 
was permitted to be v* ith her at Mr. Barboui s where 
mother and child were both very kindly and con- 
siderately treated. 

The excellent qualities of Statie as a cook having 
been noised about, her services were sought for a 
Washington hotel where rauch higher wages were 
paid than Mr. Barbou^' could afford and he advised 
her to go, as a means of the sooner freeing her child, 
which wag consequently transferred to the home of 
her owner, where her services could now be made of 
some little avail. 

At the end of a quarter Statie was permitted to 
visit home, where she soon learned through a fellow 
slave that a dealer had been negotiating for Lila and 
that at his return in a few weeks a price was to be 
fixed and he was to take her. The heart of the 
mother was wrung with agony, but the soul of the 
heroine rose triumphant and she went into the pres- 
ence of Mr. Lines with a smile upon her face and the 
cheery words, " Here, Master, are your thirty dollars, 
and I've half as many laid by for the purchase of 
Lila," upon her lips. 



I years 
in had 
tion of 
ag her- 
ing by 
1^ ulti- 
ia, who 
; where 
id con- 
t for a 
?8 were 
id vised 
r child, 
ome of 
riade of 

tted to 

,ila and 
) to be 
of the 
of the 

le pres- 

md the 
lase of 

" Indeed, Static, you've done well. It won't be 
long till I'll have to give the little doll up if you go 
on at this rate." 

" I hope not, master, for I long to see the darling 
with her free papers in hand." 

With a lying effort, the master replied, " I hope 
you may succeed, for I would much sooner sell her 
to you than to any one else, and I shall wait on you 
as long as possible." 

Expressing her thanks for what she knew was a 
hypocritical promise. Static asked that the child 
might be allowed to accompany her to the capital for 
a few days, a request readily granted by Mr. Lines 
that he might the more easily avert any suspicion of 
his real purpose. 

Cutting short her visit, Static soon started with her 
child for the city, but walked several miles out of 
her way to lay her troubles before Mr. and Mrs. Bar- 
bour, who were greatly shocked at the revelation. 
Though depreciating anything in the line of under- 
ground work, Mr. Barbour, to whom Lila had spec- 
ially endeared herself by her childish ingenuousness, 
after a few moments reflection said, " Wife, you know 
I propose making a journey across Pennsylvania 
soon to the vicinity of our old home. Will there be 
any harm in my seeing that Lila gets there ? " 

** No, husband; and you have my permission to 
see that Statie goes too. I don't think your politics 
ought to cripple your humanity, much less your reli- 
gion. Do unto others as ye would that they should do 
unto youy 

1 68 




Mr. Barbour's mind was soon made up, and Statie 
was dismissed with instructions to meet him on a 
by-road a little way out from the old north burial 
ground soon after dark on the Wednesday evening 

In arranging for his proposed trip, Mr. Barbour 
had provided himself with a good team and a " Jer- 
sey wagon" well covered with oil cloth, supported 
by bows. In this wagon he placed a high box so 
cut down in front as to furnish a seat for himself, 
and so arranged that a person could sit upright in 
the hinder part with feet projecting forward. To the 
rear of this box, were attached doors, secured by a 
padlock whilst a good supply of straw, clothing and 
provisions were placed within. When all else v/as 
ready, the Jersey was labeled "Clocks," and Wed- 
nesday night Mr. Barbour drove out to the point of 
rendezvous where Statie and Lila were found wait- 
ing, they Tivere immediately placed in their extempor- 
ized retreat and the unique emancipation car moved 
northward across the hills of Maryland at a rapid rate. 


It v/as court time in Warsaw, N. Y., and a large 
number of people were gathered about the principal 
hotel when a man holding the reins over a s^.w.uii:'^^ 
team drove up and ordered aco'^mmodatloi^g f^v ch i 
team and himself Beckoning the '« stler rVr';»ai<i 
he proceeded with the team. As he passed, a ' ;•- 
standar remarked, " A right, royal tp-^m, that." 

.f Vv t' 


y^,'. '^\i 



i Statie 

a on a 



El "Jer- 
box so 
•ight in 
To the 
id by a 
ing and 
Ise was 
1 Wed- 
)oint of 
i wait- 
lid rate. 

a large 

f^r cli.j 

, a ' ••- 

'' Pretty good for a peddler," remarked another. 

" Do you call that man a peddler? " queried a 

"Didn't you see 'Clocks' on the cover?" came 
back from No. 2. 

" No, indeed," was the reply, " I was too intent in 
looking upon the horses to notice anything else. 
Some down caster I suppose ; sold out his load over 
among the pennymights, and is now on his way 
home likely." 

Breakfast over the traveler inquired of the landlord 
if he knew one Col. C. O. Shepard, of Attica. 

'■ Very well," was the reply, "he is here attending 

" I shall be glad to see him. As he is a stranger 
to me, you will please call him in." 

The Colonel soon appeared when the stranger said, 
"This is Col. Shepard, I believe." 

" Shepard is my name, udt I have not the honor 
of knowing you, sir." 

" It is not essential that you should ; to me it is 
politic you should not. I wish to make a little con- 
signment to you," saying which he led the way to 
the barn, followed by the Colonel and a number of 
by-standers, where he oi)ened a box in his vehicle 
from which emerged a well -formed octuroon woman 
of some thirty summers and a spriglitly girl, white 
as any in the homes of Warsaw. At the sight of 
these there went up a rousing three times three, at 
the conclusion of which the stranger said, " These, 




gentlemen, are what among my neighbors are called 
chattel and treated as such, and that with my tacit 
endorsement, at least. Ten days ago if any man had 
told me I would assist one to escape, I should have 
laughed him to scorn ; but when this poor woman 
who had worked faithfully in my family to earn the 
wherewith to buy the freedom of her own flesh and 
blood, which, against honied professions to the con- 
trary from him who should nave been the innocent 
one's firmest protector, was about to be sold into an 
ignominious servitude, came to me and pleaded for 
the deliverance of her child and my wife quoted, 
*Do unto others as ye would that they should do 
unto you,' my sense of right and humanity rose 
above all political antecedents and predilections and 
here I am. Since leaving the Potomac, no human 
eye has looked upon these beings but mine until this 
moment. My affiliations and the fact it was well 
known I was coming north on business will shield 
me from suspicion, therefore ask no questions. To 
the direct care of Colonel Shepard, of whom the elave- 
uwners in Dixie well know and to the protection of 
you all, I now consign them, trusting that no master\^ 
hand shall over again be laid upon them." 

There was again vociforous cheering, at the con- 
clusion of which Col. Shepard said^ 'We accept the 
charge and I ask as a special favor that you give me 
the box in which you have brought them thus far on 
their way, as a kind of memento," a request that was 
rearlily accented to, and in a tew minutes a Jersey 



I called 
ly tacit 
an had 
d have 
am the 
3sh and 
^e con- 
into an 
ided for 
)uld do 
ty rose 
3ns and 
itil this 
as well 
na. To 
le slave- 
ition of 

J\e con- 
cept the 
jive me 
s far on 
hsit was 

wagon labeled " Clocks " was speeding rapidly east- 
ward, whilst in a day or two tlie box and its former 
occupants were taken triumphantly to Attica, the 
home of Col. Shepard. 


The time was when every person holding an office 
under the general government was supposed to be in 
sympathy with the slave power and ready to obey 
its behests, an idea somewhat erroneous. It was 
under such impressions that two strangers rode up 
to the post-office in the village of Attica and inquired 
for the postmaster. On that functionary's presenting 
himself they inquired if he knew anything of a slave 
woman, nearly white, with her little girl, being in 
the neighborhood, as such persons had recently es- 
capea from the vicinity of Washington, and were be- 
lieved by them to be in the immediate vicinity. 

The postmaster invited them to alight and come 
inside, which being complied with, he said, " Genr 
tlemen, the persons you seek are within a half mile 
of you, but though I might under some circum- 
stances be willing to assist you, my advice is, let 
them alone. Every man, woman and child in the 
town is ready to protect them. You can not raise 
men enough in this county to secure their apprehen- 
sion. I see by the commotion in the street the imo- 
ple are apprehensive of miscliief Such a thinir an 
an abduction has never been att«m[)ted here, and if 
you are wise you will not atteiu^»l oui» now. ludewl 



I would not like to guarantee your limbs or life fif- 
teen minutes longer." 

Beholding the commotion, the would-be kidnap- 
pers quickly mounted their horses and rode silently 
out of town, no demonstration being made by the 
multitude until the meddlers reached the bridge, when 
cheer on cheer arose, causing them to put spurs to 
their horses and get quickly out of sight, notwith- 
standing their threats to secure their prey, a thing 
they never attempted. 

Static died within two years after her escape ; Col. 
Shepard long kept the box in which she was brought 
off as the only " through car '"' he had ever seen ; 
Lila is still a resident of the Empire State, whilst Mr. 
Barbour, having disposed of his real estate sought a 
clime more congenial to his sense of justice and hu- 

:life fif- 

5 silently 
} by the 
spurs to 
, a thing 

ipe; Col. 
J brought 
'er seen ; 
rhilst Mr. 
sought a 
and hu- 



MY deah chile, 'tis too bad." 
'' Too bad, mother ! I tell you I's agoin ' to 
run away. Ole Massa can't whip dis chile no moah. 
rd rather be shot or hab the dogs tear me to pieces." 

" Hush, chile, hush ! you'll break your ole mud- 
der's heart, 'cause its a most done gone smashed 
afore, an' now she knows you can neber, neber, get 
across the big river an' de great lake. I tell yer, 
chile, you better stay wid ole mas'r if em do whip." 

" Mother, my mine is made up. Masssa Jones 
hab whipped George Gray for de las time. I hate 
to leave you, mother, but then I's agoin.' Some day 
de Massa'll sell me as he did father an' de res' of us 
down South, an' then you shall see George no moah, 
an' I'd hab no blessed chance for 'scape, so now I's 
goin' for freedom or I's goin' to die. I say ole massa 
can't whin me no moah." 

" De will ob de Lor' be done, chile ; but how is 
you agoin' to do it?" 

" ni tell you mother, ole Masa'll neber s'pec' you, 
He'll neber look for George 'bout dis shanty. So I's 
agoin' down to de river an' cross down in de skiff, 







i< < 




den I goes to de swamp an' comes carefully back 
an' crawls under your bed. When Massa misses me, 
you can tell him I's runned away, an' he'll start the 
horses an' the men for de swamp, an' for two or 
three days they'll hunt for George there jus' as they 
did for Uncle Pete ; den Massa'U put me in de pap- 
ers as a runaway nigger, an' then when all is ober 
heah I's comin' out an' goin' at de river an' cross 
de mountins till I gits to Canidy." 

" De bressed Lor,' an' doan yer s'pec' ole Massa'U 
hunt dis shanty frough an' frough, chile ?" 

" Ole Massa'U never s'pec' you, mother ; you's been 
wid him too long. He never whipped you, an' when 
he comes in de mornin', for to inquire, you mus' be 
prayin' ; prayin 'for me that I may be cotched.'' 

" Bress de Lor', he mus' 'ov put all dis in de head 
of de chile as he put his son Moses in de bullrushes 
down dar in de Ian' of Canin. Chile, your black ole 
mudderll cover you wid her bed like as the ole black 
hen covers her chicks when de hawk comes to steal 
de little ones from dar muder's lub. Now, chile,' 
jus' you fix it all up an' de Lor' ob dat big feller, 
Sabot, yes dat was de man, be wid you, an' it doan 
matter bout dis ole woman no moah." 

The above conversation took place many years ago 
in a cabin in the negro quarter of the plantation of 
Samuel Jones on the James river, in Virginia. Mr. 
Jones was a thriving planter and an extensive dealer 
in slaves. Though in some respects of the better 
class of slave-breeders, he inherited many of the 



ly back 
sses me, 
start the 
' two or 
as they 
de pap- 
is ober 
,n' cross 


u's been 
m' when 
mus' be 

de head 
)lack ole 
►le black 
to steal 
, chile,' 
ig feller, 
it doan 

ears ago 
ation of 
ia. Mr. 
ve dealer 
le better 
of the 

legitimate characteristicss of the j^eculiar institution. 
Towards the men slaves he was tyranical in the ex- 
treme, whilst eyeing the fairer and younger among 
tlie women with an eye of lechery. 

The plantation had come to him from his father, 
and with it the family of John Gray consisting of 
himself and wife, known for miles around as " Pray- 
in ' Hanner," and several children. The father and 
older children, all having a slight tinge of the Cau- 
cassion about them, Mr. Jones early sold to southern 
dealers, retaining only the mother and her infant 

The mother, on account of her acknowledged piety 
and ability to labor, was assigned a special cabin and 
for years had done the family laundry work and 
baking and discharged other duties of a similar chaj- 
acter. Resigned to her condition, she labored on 
year after year, ever singing and praying arxd with 
her loyalty all unquestioned. Not so with her grow- 
ing boy, however. The white blood that was in him, 
though limited, constantly rebelled against his con- 
dition, and as his years advanced, brought on fre- 
quent conflicts between him and his master, which 
invar '>bly ended in the boy's being severely whipped. 
Though feeling for him, on such occasions, as only a 
mother can feel, still Hannah Gray exhorted him to 
be obedient and submissive. Whenever the master 
threatened to sell him south, then it was that her 
prayers that one of her kin might be left to her 
mightily prevailed. The natural adaptability of the 







l^l|28 |2.5 
U£ 1^ 1 2.2 




JA III 1.6 

















(716) •73-4503 




V MP. 














youth secured for him many privileges, and he had 
been with his n.aster several times to the national 
capital and other points and had picked up much 
general intelligence, and his mode of expression had , 
to some extent, risen above the plantation vernacular. 
The conflict on this particular occasion had arisen 
between master and slave because George had asked 
the privilege of visiting a young quadroon of the 
plantation on whom Jones had fastened his lecher- 
ous eyes. As usual the controversy ended in the 
young man's being bound to a post by some of the 
hands and then inhumanly flogged by his owner. 
Stung to madness, when all were settled for the 
night, he left his quarters and sought the cabin of his 
mother, and there, as we have seen, divulged his de- 
termination to seek a lar d of freedem. True to his 
purpose, when he had gained his mother's consent, 
he went down to the river and unloosing a skifiP 
floated down with the current some distance and 
then landing, struck boldly across to a neighboring 
swamp. Entering this, he passed on a short distance 
until he came to a small creek which led directly to 
the river. He now divested himself of his clothing 
which he safely placed upon his shoulders, and fol- 
lowing the cove soon reached the river into which he 
plunged, and being an expert swimmer, was soon on 
the home side again, and making his way quietly to 
his mother's cabin, where he was safely secreted be- 
neath what he had augured an impregnable citadel, 
her bed. 



he had 
) much 
on ha.d , 
d arisen 
,d asked 
L of the 
[ in the 
3 of the 
3 owner, 
for the 
in of his 
I his de- 
.e to his 
a skiff 
|nce and 
rectly to 
and fol- 
hich he 
soon on 
ietly to 
ited be- 

Morning came soon, and the bands sallied from 
their quarters but with them came no George Gray. 
The word spread rapidly and soon reached both the 
cabin of Prayin' Manner and the mansion that he 
was missing. As soon as the proprietor could dress 
himself and make proper inquiries, he hastened to 
the shanty of the mother whom he found at her 
morning devotions, having begun them just as she 
saw his approach. Not wishing to disturb her he 
stopped before the door and caught these words of 
invocation : 

" Bressed Lor', dey say my poah, dear chile am 
gone. Am he drown ? may de Lor' raise de body 
up dat dis ole black form may follow in its sorrow to 
de grabe. Hab he killed hisself ? may de Lor' hab 
mercy on his soul, for Geog' was a bad boy; he made 
mas'r heaps o' trouble. O Lor', if he hab runned 
away, may mas'r cotch him agin — not de houn', but 
mas'r an' de men, an' den when mar's Jones whip 
him, may de bressed Lor' sen' down ole Lija, an' 
'vert his soul, dat he no moah disrember mas'r but 
dat he do his will for his ole mudder's sake, an' for 
de sake ob his good mas'r, an' for de sake ob dat 
heben whar de Lor' is. Dis, Lor', am de prayer of 
poah ole Hanner, amen." 

The prayer ceased and the master entered, only to 
find, as he inferred from it, that the intelligence of 
George's departure had preceded him, an(i farther 
that the boy had been in there the night before and 
acted very strangely ; that the mother had advised 
him to go to his quarters and be a good boy. 






Leaving the woman to her work, he went out and 
gave orders for a search. Soon it was discovered 
that the skiff was gone and directly after it was found 
half a mile down the river with footsteps leading 
towards the swamp. A pack of hounds belonging 
on a plantation below was sent for and search begun 
in earnest, and kepi up unceasingly for three days 
but without success, and then the hands were called 
in. In the meantime there appeared in the Lynch- 
burg Herald the following : 

#500.00 Reward. 

**RuN Away from the subscriber, 
George Gray, a negro, nearly pure, about 
twenty-one years old, and weighing one- 
hundred and fifty pounds. He talks pretty 
good English. Five hundred dollars will 
be given for him alive. " Samuel Jones. 

Antwerp, Va., June 25, 1841. 

During these days the cabin of Pray in' Hanner 
was filled with sacred songs, earnest prayers and 
sympathizing visitors, not one of whom, white or 
black, as he listened to, or participated in the devo- 
tions, supposed for one moment that he who had 
called them all forth, that " deah chile," was quietly 
drinking them in. When the nights came, and 
everything was still, then George emerged for a little 
time to rest and retresh himself. 

Thus matters passed until the fourth night came. 
The sun set amid gathering clouds. The returned 
hunters gathered in their quarters, some of them to 

I ■ 


»ut and 
s found 
I begun 
je days 
e called 

era and 
vrhite or 
he devo- 
irho had 
1 quietly 
me, and 
ir a little 

[it came, 
them to 



tell how earnestly they had sought to find nothin' ; 
others to depict their true loyalty to Mar's Jones, 
and the whites in their homes around, to swear ven- 
geance on every nigger caught fleeing. As the storm 
broke and the darkness became more intense, George 
came forth A little bundle of clothing, with three 
days' rations of food, had been carefully prepared 
for him. There was an embrace, tender as though 
the participants had been free, a "God bless you, 
Mother," a " May de Lor' still be wid yer as he hab 
bin," uttered as earnestly as though by cultured lips, 
and mother and son parted, never to see each other 

George Gray went forth fearlessly into the dark- 
ness. The country he knew for miles around, and 
for weary hours he made his way directly up the 
south bank of the James. Long after midnight the 
moon arose, and seeking a fitting place, he crossed 
the river and just as the first gray streakings of the 
dawn appeared, quietly secreted himself in a jungle 
of bushes upon the mountain which here comes 
dov;n close to the river. The rain had obliterated all 
traces of his course; he was thought to have gone in 
an opposite direction four days before. Thus far 
his plans had worked admirably, and feeling safe, 
he partook of his rations and lay down to a refresh- 
ing sleep. 

Night found him again in motion, and by the time 
morning came he had made considerable progress. 
Again he rested and refreshed himself, and quietly 



I'' I 

Burveyed the prospect for the future. He knew he 
was a long way from the Ohio; that much of the 
way was wild and mountainous, and that wherever 
there were people the dangers were greatest. His lit- 
tle stock of provisions would soon be gone, and then 
the berries and fruits of the forest would be his 
almost sole dependence, only occassionally he might 
go down to some bondman's cabin. With these 
facts before him he faltered not, but pressed reso- 
lutely forward, only to find as he approached the 
river, after weary weeks of vigil, that his master's ad- 
vertisement had preceded him, and that base m.en 
were watching that they might claim the reward. 
This news came to him from colored men whom he 
occasionally contrived to see, for the great humani- 
tarian thoroughfare of the days ante bellum had its 
ramifications among the mountains of Virginia, as 
well as its broader lines on freer soil, though unlike 
those of the latter their oflBicers were of somber hue. 
Taken in charge by one of these, George was safely put 
across the river one stormy night, and in care of a 
genuine " broad-brim conductor " on a main trunk 
line, but not until his presence had been scented by 
a pack of white bloodhounds all too anxious for the 
recompence of reward, and whose unholy avarice 
was equalled only by the wary alertness of the dis- 
ciple of George Fox. 



w he 
>f the 
is lit- 
L then 
e his 
d the 
r's ad- 

3 men 
)m he 
lad its 
lia, as 
ly put 
3 of a 
,ed by 
or the 
le dis- 


*' O for a thousand tongues to sing 

My great Redeemer's praise ; 
The glories of my God and King, 

The triumphs of His grace." 

Thus sang Azel Tracy as he stood running a wheel 
in his little shop in Hartford, Ohio. The last words 
were uttered in a subdued tone. This done, the air 
was continued in a fine specimen of genuine Yankee 
whistling, intermingled with occasional snatches 
from "China," or "Coronation.'* 

It was only a sample of Mr. Tracy's railroad tele- 
graphy, for the low attic of his shop, filled, in part, 
with bits of lumber and parts of defunct wagons, was 
an important station and it frequently became neces- 
sary to signal the waiting passengers, of whom nearly 
one-hundred, according to the family reckoning, 
found rest and protection within its narrow limits, a 
fact one would scarcely believe as he passes it, look- 
ing to-day almost identical with its appearance fifty 
years ago. 

Notwithstanding Hartford is a historic anti-slavery 
town, there were not wanting those within its borders, 
who for *' the recompense of reward," would willingly 
have divulged the presence of any fugitives in keep- 
ing had he known their whereabouts. It was to 
guard against this class of persons frequenting his 
shop that the old wagon-maker had adopted a 
musical system of signalizing those in his care. 
When any danger threatened, and silence was 



imperative, he would sing a snatch of some familiar 
hymn or whistle its air ; but when " the coast was 
clear," Hail Columbia or Yankee Doodle was the sig- 
nal for " unlimbering." 

On this occasion both the words quoted and the 
whistling of " Old Hundred " were considered neces- 
sary as a double danger signal, for only thre6 nights 
before there had climbed the narrow ladder in the 
comer of the shop, drawn it up and let down a board, 
thus completing the floor, an individual filling to a 
"dot" the description given in the hand-bill previ- 
ously referred to, and which was already liberally 
scattered through Eastern Ohio and Western Penn- 
sylvania. No questions had been asked and only 
necessary instructions and provisions given. Thirty- 
six hours later two strangers had put in an appear- 
ance in the quiet town, and soon avowed themselves 
as in quest of the subject of the reward oifered. 

They had continued to lounge about the village 
till this Saturday afternoon, much of the time in un- 
comfortable proximity to the Tracy wagon-shop, for 
they claimed the object of their search had been seen 
approaching it, and they were even now directly in 
its front in the highway, holding a coloquy with 
Dudley, the junior Tracy, and at present, 1894, the 
inheritor of his father's trade and shop. " Dud," as 
he is familiarly called, was then a strapping boy in 
his middle teens, bare-footed, without coat or vest, 
tow-headed, and to all appearances a fine subject for 
an interview. 



t was 
le sig- 

d the 
n the 
g to a 
i only 


in un- 
op, for 
m seen 
ctly in 
y with 
94, the 
ud," as 
boy in 
)r vest, 
►ject for 

" See here, boy," said one of the strangers, " have 
you seen anything of a young nigger about here 
within a day or two ? " 

"What do you mean, one of them black fellers 
like that'n the bill tells about yonder ? " 

*• Yes, he's the chap we want to find." 

"Wal, no, I hain't seen no such feller, but I beam 
about him two or three days ago." 


" Why I was a layin' in the bushes up back of the 
church and the Gen'ral an' Sam Fuller cum along 
and the Gen'ral sez he, ' Fuller, that boy's got to be 
got off. They'r arter him.' " 

"Who's the General?" 

*'Wal, that's Mr. Bushnell. They say he keeps 
some of them black 'uns some times." 

" Tell us what they said." 

" Wal, Fuller he said, ' What's going to be done?' 
and the Gen'ral said, *You come up with the team 
after dark and take him down to the tow-path that's 
down in Pennsylvanee and tell him to keep north 
till he came to some colored fokeses and they'd send 
him to Jehu and then he'd be all right.' " 

" How far is it to the tow-path? " 

"0 1 don't know; that's on the canawl where they 
drive the bosses hitched to the boats, an' I never 
was so fur from hum." 

There was some farther parlying, oeemingly en- 
tirely satisfactory to the strangers, then they dropped 
a " bit " into Dud's hands, and under the influence 

1 84 





V ; 

■J r ' 

.t • i 

>kf ■ i 

of spurs two horses struck out briskly for the land of 
the Pennymights. 

"Dud, I say Dud, come here quick," called the 
senior Tracy to the boy who stood gazing after the 
rapidly receding forms of the horsemen, and the 
junior slowly responded to the call. 

As soon as Dud was within the door the query was 
raised, " What did the gentlemen want?." 

" nothing much, only they asked me if I'd seen 
the nigger advertised on the hand-bill yonder?" 

"Well, what did you tell them ? " 

" not much ; I just yawned a little, telling them 
I heard the Gen'ral tell Mr. Fuller that he must get 
the boy down to Clarksville and start him north for 
Bishop, who would get him to the lake." 

"Why, Dud, what a—" 

" Come now, dad, no accusations. Didn't I just 
hear you tuning your gospel melody a^ much as to 
say, ' Keep still up there,' and didn't I hear you tell 
mother last night, when you thought we children 
were asleep, you didn't know what to do? But I did, 
and I've done it and now you needn't try to keep this 
thing from me any longer. You've thought I don't 
know what's up, but I guess I've seen the last twenty 
darkies you've holed in the shop and Uncle Sam has 
taken away, and now that I've got those fellows off, 
I think you can afford to let me take a hand after 

A look of astonishment, mingled with satisfaction, 
overspread the countenance of Azel Tracy at thia 

{»-- — 





as to 

|u tell 







s off, 



revelation of the fact that his son was acquainted 
with so much of the method of the road^ a thing of 
which he and many another parent, for prudential 
reasons, tried to keep their children in ignorance, and 
taking the hand of the boy he replied, " You shall 
have all the hand in it you wish, my son." 

The sun had dropped below the western horizon 
when the aforesaid bare-footed boy might have been 
seen making his way eastward to the home of farmer 
Fuller, bearing the following note : 

48 to lOOI. 

Dud has cooked the goose. The feathers are left — they are 
good for Fennland, and the parson needs a text for to- 
morrow. The loft is good— the cellar better. 


As a result of this note, when darkness had settled 
down upon the earth, when candles were extin- 
guished alike in farm house and village home, the 
old-fashioned buggy of Samuel Fuller stood before 
the little Hartford shop, and Dud, the Caucassian, 
surrendered his seat to an African of deepest sable, 
and soon the vehicle was speeding rapidly north- 


Night, sable goddess, had let her curtains down 
not only upon a day, but upon a week of toil, for the 
" Cotter's Saturday Night " had come to all alike, and 
the good people of Gustavus, Ohio, had been several 
hours in the Land of Nod; the dome on the old 
academy and the spires of the village churches were 









1 86 


already casting moonlight shadows eastward, and 
good old Parson Fenn was dreaming of " Seven- 
teenthly ^' in to-morrow's sermon, when there came 
three distinct raps upon his back door. Such signals 
were in no wise unusual to him, and he immediately 
responded to the call, only to find there, a friend 
from fifteen miles away, and beside him a dusky 
figure crouching and tr xnbling as if fearful of the 
moonbeams themselves. 

" There's no time to be lost, Parson," said he from 
without. " The hounds are on the track of this 
game. It has on^y been by the most indefatigable 
energy that he has been kept from their grasp from 
the Ohio to near here. Even now they are abreast 
of Ud, only lured across the Pennsylvania line." 

" He can be gotten no farther to-night," said the 
Parson musingly, " and all we can do is to put him 
in hold and keep him till the day goes by. You 
know the rest." 

There was no word of reply, but a figure gliding 
silently into the street, a vehicle, with muffled wheels, 
was headed southward and driven rapidly away. 
The parson having partially dressed himself, took a 
jug of water from the well, a loaf of bread and a 
large slice of moat from the pantry and beckoning 
the silent figure to fcUow him, proceeded to a build- 
ing on the northwest corner of the square, on the 
front of which appeared the name, "George Hezlii)." 
Passing to the rear, he pushed aside a door. Both 
having entered, the door was closed, a light struck 



y and 
of the 

e from 
of this 
> from 

id the 

at him 



took a 

and a 
, build- 
on the 



and the strange figure was soon reposing in one of 
several hogsheads carelessly stowed away there, 
whilst good Benjamin Fenn returned to his bed only 
to ponder on that mysterious providence which had 
predestmed him to this materialistic work of salva- 

The Sabbat> came, and mth it, at the appointed 
hour, the people to the village church. The pastor 
preached with great power from the words, " Pro- 
claim liberty throughout the land, to all the inhabi- 
tants thereof" 

That sermon was long a matter of comment among 
the people, a balm to some, a firebrand to others, ac- 
cording to the political faith they entertained, but 
orthodox to us all after the lapse of many years. 

The services ended and dinner over, the Parson sat 
down to his study-table and penned the following : — 

5 — 9 — 081 — looi — S s- 

XXX. In Rome when the white rabbit hangs hign the 

Praetor leads the Vestal band by linden fields, that he may 

hear the tuning of the great profaner's voice ere the game 

goes to Quintus Anno Mundi. 

49— lOoi— U.g.r.r. 

The note thus wTitten, was sealed and given to a 
trusty lad who soon placed it in the hands of an ath- 
lect, theological nimrod living in the village, whose 
love of humanity and admiration for universal re- 
demption were only equalled by that of bis affection 
for his dog, his gun ikud fishing tackle. When he 
had read the note, he bade the messenger tell the 





M . 



Parson " When the stars are out," and proceeded at 
once to change his Sunday garb for a hunting suit. 

The bell had already rung for the evening service, 
and the villagers and the country folk were throng- 
ing to the church when two horsemen, . on jaded 
steeds, came down from the north and reigned up at 
the tavern <^,nross from Hezlip's store and requested 
refreshments for themselves and horses. The ani- 
mals were taken in charge by the hostler whilst the 
riders proceeded to the bar-room and washed and 
cleaned themselves from the effects of their dusty 

Waiting supper, they had a private interview with 
the landlord in which they stated that they were in 
pursuit of a young negro who had crossed the Ohio 
river a few days before and been secreted by an old 
Quaker. They had traced him as far north as Hart- 
ford. There they had been decoyed into Pennsyl- 
vania whilst they believed that the fugitive had been 
run into a line farther west. After going as far north 
as Espy ville they had come across to see if they could 
not regain the trail. 

They were informed, in return, that there were 
persons in the neighborhood in the employ of the 
Underground Railroad, of whom the old Parson was 
the chief, and that it was thought from the energy 
with which he had preached that morning that there 
must be a passenger somewhere about. At the least, 
Boniface assured the officials, for such they had 
avowed themselves, that after supper he would show 



ed at 
up at 
3 ani- 
3t the 
d and 

V with, 
ere in 
B Ohio 
&n old 
1 been 

them one of the company's waiting rooms which he 
had accidentally discovered. 

Twilight had deepened into evening ; the " Gus- 
tavus House " bell was ringing refreshments for two, 
and Parson Fenn was praying fervently, " Lord, send 
sure deliverance to him that fleeth from oppression, 
and bring to naught the efforts of them that pursue 
for blood money," jus^ as a square-rigged form, with 
elastic step, and showing great power of endurance 
stepped into the rear of the Hezlip building. Shov- 
ing open the door the man uttered a low whistle 
which was immediately responded to, and a dusky 
form emerged from one of the hogsheads and fol- 
lowed the leader without a word. Passing through 
the fields a short distance, they crossed the public 
highway beyond the churchyard and took to the 
woods on the right. With rapid strides they passed 
across fields and througli forests for several miles un- 
til, leaving the little hamlet of Lindenville to the 
right, they descended to the Pymatuning flats where 
the guide deposited his ward in one of those little 
" hay barns," so common on the Reserve forty years 
ago. Returning by the home of the owner, \vhom 
he signaled at his bedroom window, he left the la- 
conic instruction, "Feed the yearling steer," and 
j>res8ed rapidly on to regain his home, which he did 
shortly after midnight. 

Supper ended at the tavern, the host took a lantern 
and led his guests across the street to the basement 
of the store, where the jug, emptied of its contents, 

ir II 

i . IS 





and fragments of the bread and meat were readily 
found, and an accidental application of the hand to 
the inner surface of the extemporized bed-room 
showed it still warm from the contact of human 

The language which escaped the foiled pursuers 
when they found how near they had probably been 
to the object of their pursuit, was far more forcible 
than classic. They would have instituted a pursuit 
at once but Boniface told them such a thing would 
be useless there, for the old Parson, who was ex- 
pounding Galvanism across the way, and a young 
Universalist in the village, who were perfectly at 
logerheads on matters of theology, were so in unison 
on the matter of running off fugitives that they would 

make it hotter than ^ for any one who should 

assist them, as the most of the community were on 
ihe side of the " road." He advised that they go to 
Ashtabula, where the runaway would probably take 
boat for Canada, as their best plan. 

This advise they accepted, and after a night's rest 
and some observations made about the village in the 
morning, they departed northward, and in due time 
drew up at the " American '* in Jefferson where their 
presence soon attracted the attention of a "road 

Having breakfast, our liberal theologian sauntered 
through the village, taking in the dimensions of the 
strangers and noting their departure northward, then, 
waiting until the sun had passed the meridian, he 




land to 


bly been 

t pursuit 
ig would 

was ex- 
a young 
•fectly at 
,n unison 
ey would 
o should 

were on 
ley go to 

.bly tak« 

Ight's rest 
|ge in the 
lue time 
lere their 
a "road 

18 of the 
ird, then, 
ridian, he 

took his gun upon his shouldar and struck eastward 
as though meaning to make the Kinsman forests. 
Reaching a convenient point, he changed his course, 
and an hour before sunset threw down a half dozen 
squirrels upon the doorstep of the man whose slum- 
bers he had disturbed the previous night. There 
was a little good-natured parleying as to who should 
dress the game, then busy hands were at work, and 
as the sun sank behind the western woodlands the 
family and hunter-guest sat down to a feast that 
would have tempted the appetite of a king. 

Supper over, the guest challenged the host to take 
him to an appointment he had a few miles north, 
which was acceded to, and whilst the latter was get- 
ting ready the former went on the way a little to 
look after a trap he had set sometime before. An 
hour later and a vehicle with two men in the seat 
and a straw-covered bundle beneath was driven 
rapidly towards Jefferson. Arrived within a mile of 
the town, a halt was called under cover of a little 
clump of trees, one of the men alighted and stirred 
up the straw from which emerged a human figure. 
These two took a field path to the village, whilst the 
driver turned a little out of the public highway to 
await returns. 

Twenty minutes later there was a rap at the side 
door of bluff Ben Wade's home. 

" Who the d — 1 is there ? " said a gruff voice from 
an upper window. 

"* Thribble X ' from ' A Thousand and One,' " was 
the quick response. 



"What the h — 1 do you want at this time of 

" I have a white rabbit." 

" Take the black k — ss to Atkins ; he'll stuff his 

A half hour more and the " white rabbit " was 
stowed in the capacious garret of " Anno Mundi " 
and " Thribble X " was being driven at a gay pace 
toward the confines of Old Trumbull. 


A company of persons awaiting a western bound 
train stood chatting with the veteran Seely upon the 
platform at Girard, Pa. Among them, evidently well 
up in the sixties, was a man of unusually muscular 
frame. His countenance was open and pleasant, but 
mostly enveloped in a heavy beard of almost snowy 
whiteness. Judging from the appearance of his eyes, 
he was endowed with a more than average gift of 
language. Indeed he was the central figure in the 
company. The " Toledo " rolled un and as the 
group passed into the coach a colored man seated a 
little back took a close survey of this individual. As 
they seated themselves in his rear, the negro arose, 
passed to the front of the car and turning round 
placed his eyes squarely upon the face of the old 
gentleman. Thus he stood until Springfield was 
passed, until Conneaut was nearly reached. Feeling 
annoyed himself, and noticing that the gaze was at. 
tracting the attention of his fellow passengers, the 
gentleman arose and going forward said : 



" Stranger, let us have this out. I can tolerate this 
impertenence no longer." 

" No 'pertenence, massa. no' pertinence at all," re- 
sponded the negro, " I knowed yer the minit yer 
commed aboard." 

" You know me? I never saw you before that I 

" Bery like, bery like, massa, you's named Ship- 
man, and doan yer remember the ' white rabbit ' yer 
crawled on the hands and knees wid through the 
tater patch arter you'd got him out of the cellar whar 
the old Parson had stowed him. Dis chile hab never 
forgot that face though it had no whiskers then. The 
Lor' bress yer, massa, doan yer member so long 
ago?" and the overjoyed man held out his hand 
which was grasped in a hearty shitke by that of his 
whiter brother. 

Seating themselves together, the colored man told 
the story of his early servitude, and how, armed with 
no weapon but a butcher knife for defense, he had 
made that long flight across the mountains without 
one sense of fear until he had crossed into Ohio and 
learned that men were there watching for him to 
claim the reward offered for his return. 

" But how," queried the venerable Shipman, " did 
you get along after I left you? " 

" Lor' bress you, massa, de next mornin' that ole 
swearer, Massa Wade, he comed over to dat Massa 
Atkins an' he say, * Doan sen' dat black k — bs to de 
harb'r, kase h — ll's a watchin' for him.' So dey sen 



me on anuder road to Erie an* put me on the 
' Thomas Jefferson,' the name of that great author of 
liberiy from ole Virginy, and soon I was safe in 

" And what then? " said Uncle Charley. 

" An' den, Massa Shipman, George Gray went to 
work to earn money to buy his old mother, but when 
he had enough he learned she was dead^ so he bought 
him a little home, and then the great wah comed 
and set all his people free, an' so now he's jus' agoin' 
down inter that country to see if Massa Jones hab 
eber heard from dat 'deah chile' who was * drown,' 
Cx ' killed hisself ' or * runned away.' But here am 
my stoppin' place, an' may the good Lor' bress and 
save Massa Shipman forever, am the prayer ob de 
White Rabbit." 

There was another hearty hand-shaking, amid the 
cheerings of the little throng who had been attentive 
listeners to the conversation, mutual pledges to meet 
on the " other shore," and the old ex-conductor from 
"station 1001, U. g. r. r.," and his sable passenger 
parted company under far pleasanter circumstances 
than they did in the long ago on the door-step of 
Anno Mundi in the village home of Giddings and 
Wade. . 

)n the 
thor of 
lafe in 

ent to 
t when 

les hab 
3re am 
ss and 

ob de 

id the 
•r from 
tep of 
gs and