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Academic Affairs Library, UNC-CH
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill,
(title page) Biographical Sketches and Interesting Anecdotes of Persons of Colour. To Which is Added, a Selection of Pieces in Poetry
(spine) Mott's Sketches
Compiled by A. Mott
iv, 5-192 p.
PRINTED AND SOLD BY MAHLON DAY, NO. 376, PEARL-STREET.
Call number E185.96 M89 (American University Library)
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"Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: But in every
nation, he that feareth him, and worketh righteouness, is accepted with him." Acts x. 34, 35.
By consent of the Compiler, and at the recommendation of the Trustees of the African Free Schools in New-York, (who have liberally patronized the work) the pieces in the following compilation have been divided into reading sections, with a view to have the volume introduced into Schools, as a Class Book. It is hoped this arrangement will be equally agreeable to Subscribers, and to those Teachers who may use it in their Schools.
THE object of this selection is not to set forth the exploits of the warrior, who has drenched fields i blood, destroyed cities by fire, and their inhabitants by famine, who has made the mother a widow, and her children fatherless; and deprived the aged of their comfort and support in declining life. It is not to rehearse the harangues, nor to set forth the eloquence of the man of science; but to encourage virtue and morality in the different classes of society; and by bringing into view the effects which a system of slavery has on the human mind, and the dreadful consequences of that arbitrary power invested in the slave-holder over his fellow being; to show how it hardens the heart and petrifies the feelings. No doubt there are some men who in early life, and before they were placed in authority, like Hazael, would have been shocked to hear predicted what they have afterwards, and under different circumstances, put in practice; but there are others, who, being trained up in the midst of Slavery, are inured from their infancy to see the sufferings of the poor slaves, and to hear their cries, become almost insensible to the responsibility of their station, and the enormity of the evils they are committing. For these, as well as for the slaves, our tenderest sympathy ought to be awakened, and our aspirations to ascend before Him who can unstop the deaf ear, and open the eyes even of those who are blind.
The design of this selection is also to show the baneful effects of that degradation to which the children of Africa have, in an especial manner, been subjected by the Slave Trade; and to exhibit for encouragement and imitation, the salutary and cheering influence of the Christian religion, on such as have faithfully followed its dictates, though some of them have been held in a state of bondage.
Here we may observe that it is not the inhabitants of any particular country or climate that are the favourites of Him, who without respect of persons, judgeth every man according to his works and the integrity of his heart; but it is the faithful and thoseonly, who can look forward to a termination of their pilgrimage here, with a hope that they will then be admitted into the mansions of bliss, where the wicked cease from troubling, and the weary find rest.
Some instances will be found, where men, by yielding to the convicting power of Truth, and the noble feelings of justice, have broken the chains of slavery, and said to the captive, go free. May others, by following their example, share in the reward attendant on such acts of benevolence. And may those persons of colour who enjoy the inestimable privilege of
Freedom, either by birthright or by emancipation, always bear in mind that by their good conduct they not only promote their own happiness, but that they advocate the cause of Universal Emancipation, by showing to the world their capability of enjoying the benefits of society, and providing comfortably for themselves.
In preparing these pieces for the press, I have taken the liberty of abridging some of those which have already appeared in print. And in some instances, where in the first narration, the character was not fully delineated or finished, I have supplied that deficiency from later writers, or from inquiries of those who had been personally acquainted with the individual, as in the cases of Joseph Rachel, Phillis Wheatley, &c.
A. M.Hickory Grove, 11th mo. 1825
The following remarks, as well as divers other pieces in this selection, are generally taken from an inquiry into the intellectual and moral faculties of the Negroes, by GREGOIRE.
"Many authors have borne testimony to the pleasantness and fertility of Africa, and to the generosity, and filial affection of its inhabitants. In reading Ledyard, Lucas, Mungo Park, Hornman and others, we find that the inhabitants of the interior are more virtuous and more civilized than those on the sea coast: surpass them also in the preparations of wool, leather, cotton, wood, and metals; in weaving, dying, and sewing. Golberry says that 'in Africa there are no beggars except the blind.'
"Adanson, who visited Senegal in 1754, when describing the country says, 'It recalled to me the idea of the primitive race of men. I thought I saw the world in its infancy. The negroes are sociable, humane. obliging, and hospitable, and they have generally preserved an estimable simplicity of domestic manners. They are distinguished by their tenderness for their parents and great respect for the aged, a patriarchal virtue, which in our day is too little known.'
"Robin speaks of a slave in Martinico, who having gained money sufficient for his own ransom, purchased with it his mother's freedom. The most horrible outrage that can be committed against a negro, is to curse his father or his mother, or to speak of either with contempt.'
"Mungo Park observes that a slave said to his master, 'Strike me, but curse not my mother.' And that a negress having lost her son, her only consolation was, that he had never told a lie. Casuax relates, that a negro seeing a white man abuse his father, said, 'Carry away the child of this monster, that it may not learn to imitate his conduct.'
"The Bishop Jacqumin, had been twenty-two years at Guyanna, where he was much beloved. When they ceased to employ him as a pastor, those Indians said to him, 'Father, thou art aged: remain with us, and we will hunt and fish for thee.'
"Many others might be added from the official depositions made at the bar of Parliament, and before the select committee of the House of Commons, in England, in 1790 and 1791; but these may suffice to encourage others to similar acts of piety, and filial affection, remembering also that we must expect our children to follow our example.
"As no human being can choose the place of its birth or the advantages of ancestry, so it manifests great folly to build our fame on the virtues, riches, or honours of those who have gone before us; or to despite a fellow being on account of the poverty or obscurity of its birth. In so doing we arraign the goodness of our Creator, and act inconsistently with our dependent situation."
1. FRANCIS WILLIAMS, the son of African parents, was born in Jamaica, about the year 1700, and died when about 70 years of age.
2. Struck with the conspicuous talents of this negro, when he was quite young, the Duke of Montaigue, Governor of the Island, proposed to try whether, by an improved education, he would be equal to a white man, placed in the same circumstances.
3. He accordingly sent him to England, where he commenced his studies in a private school, and afterwards entered the University of Cambridge, where he made considerable progress in the mathematics, and other branches of science.
4. After several years stay in England, he returned to Jamaica, where, with the patronage of the Governor, be opened a school and taught Latin and the mathematics. He also wrote many pieces of Latin poetry, some of which were presented to the Governor; and one of his friends says, "we do not find among the defenders of slavery, one half of the literary merit of Phillis Wheatley and Francis Williams."
1. JASMIN THOUMAZEAU was born in Africa, in 1714, brought to St. Domingo and sold for a slave when he was 22 years of age, but afterwards obtaining
his freedom, he married, and in the year 1756 established a Hospital, at the Cape, for poor negroes and mulattoes.
2. More than forty years were devoted by him and his wife to this benevolent institution, and his fortune was subservient to their wants. The only regret they felt, while their time and substance was devoted to these destitute objects, arose from a fear that after they were gone the Hospital might be abandoned.
3. The Philadelphian Society at the Cape, and the Agricultural Society at Paris, decreed medals to Jasmin, who died near the close of the century.
1. IGNATIUS SANCHO. The parents of Sancho were brought from Africa in a vessel employed in the slave trade, and he was born on the passage. When they arrived at Carthagena he received the name of Ignatius. The change of climate, and other sufferings, soon brought his mother to the grave; and his father being doomed to the horrors of slavery, in a moment of despair put an end to his existence with his own hands.
2. Ignatius was not two years old when he was taken to England by his master, and presented to three young ladies, sisters, at Greenwich. His character was such that they added the name of Sancho; and he some time after attracted the notice of the Duke of Montague. This gentleman admired in him a frankness, which was neither degraded by servitude, nor corrupted by a false education. He often lent him books, and advised his mistresses to instruct him, and improve his genius.
3. But when grown, being subject to like passions with other young men, he was led into difficulty; and the Duke, his friend, being dead, he was at a loss what to do; but the Dutchess, his widow, had compassion on him, and employed him as her butler, where he remained until her death. By his economy, and a legacy
left him by this lady, he was possessed of 70 pounds sterling, and thirty of an annuity.
4. After the death of this kind friend, he, wandering about, often fell into bad company, and was reduced to suffering; but he at length engaged at service in a respectable family, and his conduct becoming regular, he soon married an interesting female born in the West Indies.
5. In 1773 he had frequent attacks of the gout, but by the generosity of the before mentioned lady in her annuity, and his own economy, he commenced an honest trade, and by the assistance of his wife's industry and frugality, he reared a numerous family. The public esteem was obtained by his domestic virtues. He died the 15th of December, 1780. After his death a fine edition of his letters were published; a few extracts from which will close this account.
6. "According to the plan of the Deity, commerce," said he, "ought to render common to all the globe the productions of each country: it ought to unite nations by the sentiments of reciprocal wants, of fraternal amity, and thus facilitate a general diffusion of the benefits of the Gospel. But those poor Africans whom Heaven has favoured with a rich and luxuriant soil, are the most unhappy of the human race, by the horrible traffic in slaves; and this, too, is performed by Christians!"
7. In speaking of the Dutchess of K--, tormented by conscience, the great chancellor of the soul: "Act, then, always in such a manner as to gain the approbation of your heart--to be truly brave, one must be truly good. We have reason as a rudder, religion for our anchor, truth for our polar star, conscience as a faithful monitor, and perfect happiness as a recompence."
8. In the same letter, endeavouring to drive away recollections which might expose his virtue to a new shipwreck, he exclaims--"Why bring to mind those combustible matters, whilst rapidly glancing over my past years, I approach the end of my career? Have I
not the gout, six children, and a wife? O Heaven where art thou?
9. "You see that it is much easier to speak than to act. But we know how to separate good from evil; let us arm ourselves against vice, and act like a general in his camp, who ascertains the force and position of the enemy, and places advance guards to avoid surprize: let us act so even in the ordinary course of human life; and believe me, my friend, that a victory gained over passion, immorality and pride, is more deserving of a tedeum than that which is obtained in the field of ambition and carnage."
1. ATTOBAH CUGOANO was born on the coast of Fantin, in the town of Agimaque; says that he was dragged from his country with twenty other children of both sexes, by European robbers, who, brandishing their pistols and sabres, threatened to kill them if they attempted to run away. They confined us, and soon I heard nothing but the clanging of chains, the sound of the whip, and the cries of my fellow prisoners.
2. In this dreadful situation he was carried to Grenada and made a slave. But Lord Hoth, in his generosity, liberated him and carried him to England. He was there in 1788, in the service of Cosway, the first painter to the Prince of Wales.
3. Piatoli, who during a long residence in London was particularly acquainted with Cugoano, then about forty years of age, and whose wife was an English woman, praises this African highly; and speaks in strong terms of his piety, his mildness of character, modesty, integrity, and talents.
4. At Grenada he saw the negroes lacerated by the whip, because, instead of working, they went to church on Sundays. He saw others have their teeth broken, because they dared to suck the sugar cane. Being a witness to these cruelties, he paints the heart-rending spectacle of those poor Africans in a moving manner;
describing their being forced to bid a final farewell to their native soil--to fathers, mothers, husbands, wives, brothers, and children, and all that they hold dear: invoking Heaven, bathed in tears, and enclosed in each other's arms, giving the last embrace, and instantly torn asunder! This spectacle, says he, calculated to move the hearts of monsters, does not that of the slave dealer.
5. Cugoano published his reflections on the slave trade, and the slavery of the negroes, in English; but it has since been translated into French. He raised his voice to spread abroad the spirit of religion, and to prove by the bible, that the stealing, sale and purchase of men, and their detention in a state of slavery, are crimes of the deepest die.
6. After some remarks on the cause of the difference of colour in the human species, such as climate, soil, regimen, &c., he asks whether it is "more criminal to be black or white, than to wear a black or white coat: whether colour and bodily form give a right to enslave men. The negroes have never crossed the seas to steal white men. The European complains of barbarism, while their conduct towards negroes is horribly barbarous. To steal men, to rob them of their liberty, is worse than to plunder them of their goods."
7. "On national crimes, heaven sometimes inflicts national punishments. Besides, injustice is sooner or later fatal to its author." This idea is conformable to the great plan of religion; and ought to be indelibly impressed on every human heart.
8. Cugoano makes a striking comparison between ancient and modern slavery; and proves that the last, which prevails among professing Christians, is worse than that among Pagans; and also worse than that among the Hebrews, who did not steal men to enslave them, nor sell them without their consent; and who put no fine on the head of a fugitive. In Deuteronomy, it is formally said, "Thou shalt not deliver up to thy master a fugitive slave, who, in thy house has sought an asylum."
9. He passes from the Old to the New Testament, and states the inconsistency of slavery with Christ's command to do to others as we would they should do to us.
10. In him we see talents without much literary cultivation; and to which a good education would have given great advantage. His writings are not very methodical, but they speak the language of a feeling heart, and are read with interest by those who are averse to slavery.
1. Although the state of Massachusetts never was so deeply involved in the African slave trade as most of the other states, yet before the war which separated the United States of America from Great Britain, and gave us the title of a free and independent nation, there were many of the poor Africans brought into their ports and sold for slaves.
2. In the year 1761, a little girl about 7 or 8 years old was stolen from her parents in Africa, and being put on board a ship was brought to Boston, where she was sold for a slave to John Wheatley, a respectable inhabitant of that town. Her master giving her the name of Phillis, and she assuming that of her master, she was of course called Phillis Wheatley.
3. Being of an active disposition, and very attentive and industrious, she soon learned the English language, and in about sixteen months so perfectly, that the could read any of the most difficult parts of the Scriptures, to the great astonishment of those who heard her. And this she learned without any school instruction except what was taught her in the family.
4. The art of writing she obtained by her own industry and curiosity, and in so short a time that in the year 1765, when she was not more than twelve years of age,she was capable of writing letters to her friends
on various subjects. She also wrote to several persons in high stations. In one of her communications to the Earl of Dartmouth, on the subject of Freedom, she has the following lines:
"Should you, my lord, while you pursue my song,
Wonder from whence my love of Freedom sprung,
Whence flow these wishes for the common good,
By feeling hearts alone best understood--
I, young in life, by seeming cruel fate,
Was snatch'd from Afric's fancy'd happy seat:
What pangs excruciating must molest,
What sorrows labour in my parent's breast?
Steel'd was that soul, and by no misery mov'd,
That from a father seized the babe belov'd.
Such, such my case--and can I then but pray,
Others may never feel tyrannic sway?"
5. In her leisure moments she often indulged herself in writing poetry, and a small volume of her composition was published in 1773, when she was about nineteen years of age,attested by the Governor of Massachusetts, and a number of the most respectable inhabitants of Boston, in the following language:
6. "We, whose names are under-written, do assure the world that the Poems specified in the following pages were, (as we verily believe,) written by Phillis, a young negro girl, who was but a few years since, brought an uncultivated barbarian from Africa; and has ever since been, and now is, under the disadvantage of serving as a slave in a family in this town. She has been examined by some of the best judges, and is thought qualified to write them."
7. Her master says--"Having a great inclination to learn the Latin language, she has made some progress in it."*
* Most of her poetical productions have a religious or moral cast all breathe a soft and sentimental feeling. Twelve related to the death of friends. Others on the works of Providence; on virtue, humanity and freedom; with one to a young painter of her own colour. On seeing his works, she vented her grief for the sorrows of her country men, in a pathetic strain.
* Most of her poetical productions have a religious or moral cast all breathe a soft and sentimental feeling. Twelve related to the death of friends. Others on the works of Providence; on virtue, humanity and freedom; with one to a young painter of her own colour. On seeing his works, she vented her grief for the sorrows of her country men, in a pathetic strain.
8. After the publication of the little volume mentioned, and about the 21st year of her age, she was liberated; but she continued in her master's family, where she was much respected for her good conduct. Many of the most respectable inhabitants of Boston and its vicinity, visiting at the house, were pleased with an opportunity of conversing with Phillis, and observing her modest deportment, and the cultivation of her mind.
9. When about 23, she was married to a person of her own colour, who having also obtained considerable learning, kept a grocery, and officiated as a lawyer, under the title of Doctor Peters, pleading the cause of his brethren the Africans, before the tribunals of the state.
10. The reputation he enjoyed, with his industry, procured him a fortune; but Phillis being much indulged, had not acquired sufficient knowledge of domestic concerns; and her friends continuing their particular attention to her, gave him uneasiness, which operating on a disposition that was not willing to have her more respected than himself--which first manifested itself by reproaches; which were followed by harsh treatment. The continuance thereof affecting her susceptible mind, and delicate constitution, she soon went into a decline, and died in 1780, about the 26th year of her age, much lamented by those who knew her worth. She had one child, which died very young; and her husband survived her only three years.
The subject of the following narrative lived and died in a town in the eastern part of Connecticut. We are well acquainted with the writer, and can assure our readers that the account here given is true.--Editor of the 'Religious Intelligencer.'
1. It was a comfortless morning in the month of
March, 1814, when I first formed an acquaintance with the subject of the following sketch.
2 She called to solicit a few crusts, meekly saying, she 'deserved nothing but the crumbs--they were enough for her poor old body, just ready to crumble into dust.' I had heard of Sarah, a pious Indian woman, and was therefore prepared to receive her with kindness. And remembering the words of my Lord, who said, 'Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it onto me,' I was ready to impart a portion of my little unto her, (for little, alas! was my store.)
3. And how (I asked her) have you got along, this long, cold winter, Sarah? 'O, misse, (she replied,) God better to Sarah than she fear. When winter come on, Sarah was in great doubt. No husband, no child here, but--, she wicked, gone a great deal. What if great snow come? What if fire go out? Nabor great way off--what if sick all 'lone? What if I die? Nobody know it.
4. 'While I think so, in my heart, then I cry: while I crying, something speak in my mind, and say, trust God, Sarah; he love his people, he never leave them, he never forsake them; he never forsake Sarah, he friend indeed. Go tell Jesus, Sarah, he love hear prayer, he often hear Sarah pray.
5. 'So I wipe my eyes, dont cry any more; go out in bushes, where nobody see, fall down on my old knees and pray. God give me great many words; pray great while. God make all my mind peace. When I get up, go in house, can't stop praying in my mind. All my heart burn with love to God; willing live cold, go hungry, be sick, die, all 'lone, if God be there. He know best, Sarah dont know, so I feel happy; great many day go singing Baptist hymn--
"Now I can trust the Lord for ever,
"He can clothe, and he can feed,
"He my rock, and he my Saviour,
"Jesus is a friend indeed."
6. Well, Sarah, have you been comfortably supplied?
'O yes,' she replied, 'I never out corn-meal once all winter.' But how do you cook it, Sarah, so as to make it comfortable food? 'O I make porridge, Misse; sometimes I get out, like to-day, and I go get some crusts bread and some salt put in it, then it is so nourishing to this poor old body; but when can't get none, then make it good I can, and kneel down, pray God to bless it to me; and I feel if God feed me, and be so happy here,' (laying her hand on her heart.)
7. Oh what a lesson, thought I, for my repining heart. But do you have no meat or other necessaries, Sarah? 'Not often, Misse; sometimes I get so hungry for it, I begin feel wicked, then think how Jesus hungry in the desert. But when Satan tempt him to sin, to get food, he would not. So I say, Sarah won't sin to get victuals. I no steal, no eat stole food, though be hungry ever so long.*
* This might refer to food stolen by her wicked daughter.
* This might refer to food stolen by her wicked daughter.
8. Then God gives me small look of his self, his Son, and his glory. And I think in my heart, they all be mine soon; then I no suffer hunger any more--my Father have there many mansions.' Sarah, said I, you seem to have some knowledge of the Scriptures; can you read? 'I can spell out a little, I can't read like you white folks; Oh, if I could!' Here she burst into tears.
9. But after regaining her composure, she added, 'this, Misse, what I want above all things, more than victuals or drink. O how often I beg God teach me to read, and he do teach me some. When I take Bible, kneel down and pray, he show me great many words, and they be so sweet, I want to know a great deal more. O when I get home to heaven, then I know all, no want to read any more.' In this strain of simple piety, she told me her first interesting story. And when she departed, I felt a stronger evidence of her being a true child of God, than I have acquired of some professors by a long acquaintance.
10. In one of her many visits she afterwards made me, she gave me, in substance, the following account of her conversion. She lived, according to her own account, until she became a wife and a mother, without hope and without God in the world, (having been brought up in extreme ignorance) her husband treating her with great severity. She became dejected and sorrowful, and to use her own simple language, 'I go sorrow, sorrow all day long. When the night come, husband come home angry beat me so, then I think, O if Sarah had friend, Sarah no friend; I no want tell nabor I got trouble, that make only worse. So I be quiet, tell nobody, only cry all night and day for one good friend.
11. 'One Sunday, good nabor come, and say, come, Sarah, go Meetin. So I call my children, tell 'em stay in house while I go Meetin. When got there, minister tell all about Jesus; how he was born in stable, go suffer all his life, die on great cross, bury, rise, and go up into heaven, so always be sinner's friend. He say too, if you got trouble, go to Jesus. He best friend in sorrow, he cure all your sorrow, he bring you out of trouble, he support you, make you willing suffer.
12. 'So when I go home, think great deal what minister say, think this the friend I want, this the friend I cry for so long. Poor ignorant Sarah, never hear so much about Jesus before. Then I try hard to tell Jesus how I want such friend. But, O. my heart so hard, can't feel, can't pray, can't love Jesus, though he so good. This make me sorrow more and more. When Sunday come, want go Meetin 'gain. Husband say, you shan't go; I beat you if you go. So I wait till he go off hunting, then shut up children safe, and run to Meetin, sit down in door, hear minister tell how bad my heart is--no love to God, no love to Jesus, no love to pray.
13. 'So, then, I see why can't have Jesus for friend, 'cause got so bad heart: then go praying all way home, Jesus make my heart better. When got home, find children safe, feel glad husband no come: only feel
sorry 'cause my wicked heart don't know how make it better. When I go sleep, then dream I can read good book: dream I read there, Sarah must be born 'gain: in morning keep thinking what that word mean. When husband go work, run over my good nabor, ask her if Bible say so.
14. 'Then she read me, where that great man go see Jesus by night, 'cause 'fraid go in day time. I think he just like Sarah. She must go in secret, to hear 'boat Jesus, else husband be angry, and beat her. Then feel 'couraged in mind, determined to have Jesus for friend. So ask nabor how get good heart. She tell me, give your heart to Jesus, he will give Holy Spirit, make it better. Sarah don't know what she mean--never hear 'bout Holy Spirit.
15. 'She say must go Meetin next Sunday, she will tell minister 'bout me--he tell me what to do So Sarah go hear how must be born 'gain; minister say, you must go fall down 'fore God; tell him you grieved 'cause you sin--tell him you want better heart--tell him for Christ Jesus' sake give Holy Spirit, make your heart new. Then Sarah go home light, 'cause she know the way. When get home, husband beat me 'cause I go Meetin--don't stay home work. I say, Sarah can't work any more on Sunday, 'cause sin 'gainst God. I rather work nights when moon shine. So he drive me hoe corn that night he so angry. I want to pray great deal, so go out hoe corn, pray all the time.
16. 'When come in house, husband sleep. Then I kneel down and tell Jesus take my bad heart--can't beat bad heart; pray give me Holy Spirit, make my heart soft, make it all new. So great many days Sarah go beg for a new heart. Go Meetin all Sundays; if husband beat me, never mind it; go hear good nabor read Bible every day So after great while, God make all my mind peace. I love Jesus; love pray to him; love tell him all my sorrows; He take away my sorrow, make all my soul joy; only sorry 'cause can't
read Bible--learn how to be like Jesus; want to be like his dear people Bible tell of.
17. 'So I make great many brooms; go get Bible for 'em. When come home, husband call me fool for it; say he burn it up. Then I go hide it; when he gone, get it, kiss it many times 'cause it Jesus' good word. Then I go ask nabor if she learn me read; she say yes. Then I go many days learn letters, pray God all the while help me learn read his holy word. So, Misse, I learn read Baptist hymn; learn to spell out many good words in Bible.
18. 'So every day take Bible, tell my children that be God's word, tell 'em how Jesus die on cross for sinner: then make 'em all kneel down, I pray God give them new heart; pray for husband too, he so wicked. O how I sorry for him, fear his soul go in burning flame.'
19. 'Sarah,' said I, 'how long did your husband live?' 'O he live great many year' Did he repent and become a good man? 'No, Misse, I 'fraid not; he sin more and more. When he get sick I in great trouble for him; talk every day to him, but he no hear Sarah. I say, how can you bear go in burning fire, where worm never die, where fire never go out. At last he get angry, bid me hold my tongue. So I don't say any more, only mourn over him every day 'fore God.
20. 'When he die, my heart say, Father, thy will be done--Jesus do all things well. Sarah can't help him now, he be in God's hands; all is well. So then give my heart all away to Jesus, tell him I be all his; serve him all my life; beg Holy Spirit come fill all my heart, make it all clean and white like Jesus. Pray God help me learn more of his sweet word.
21. 'And now Sarah live poor Indian widow great many long year: always find Jesus friend, husband, brother, all. He make me willing suffer; willing live great while in this bad world, if he see best. 'Bove all, he give me great good hope of glory when I die. So now I wait patient till my change come.'
22. While she was giving this narration her countenance bore strong testimony to the diversified emotions of her soul. I might greatly swell the list of particulars; but I design only to give the outlines of an example, which would have done honour to the highest sphere in life; and which, in my opinion, is not the less excellent, or the less worthy of imitation, because shrouded in the veil of poverty and sorrow. It was evident she meditated much on what little she knew of divine things: and what she knew of God's word was to her like honey and the honey comb.
23. She was in the habit of bringing bags of sand into the village, and selling it for food. Sometimes she brought grapes and other kinds of fruit. But as she walked by the way, she took little notice of any thing that passed, (except children, whom she seldom passed without an affectionate word of exhortation to be good, say their prayers, learn to read God's word, &c. accompanied with a bunch of grapes or an apple. Thus she engaged the affection of many a little heart,) but seemed absorbed in meditation; and you might often have observed her hands uplifted, in the attitude of prayer. One day, after having observed her as she came, I asked her how she could bring such heavy loads, old as she was, and feeble.
24. 'O,' said she, 'when I get great load, then I go pray God give me strength to carry it. So I go on, thinking all the way how good God is give his only Son die for poor sinner; think how good Jesus be, suffer so much for such poor creature; how good Holy Spirit was, come into my bad heart, make it all new: so these sweet thoughts make my mind so full joy, I never think how heavy sand be on my old back.' Here, said I to my heart, learn how to make the heavy load of iron cares easy.
25. One day she passed with a bag of sand. On her return she called on me; I inquired how much Mrs.--gave her for the sand. She was unwilling to tell, and I feared she was unwilling lest I should withhold my accustomed mite, on account of what she
had already received; I therefore insisted she should let me see. She at length consented, and I drew from the bag a bone, not containing meat enough for half a meal. 'Is this all? Did that rich woman turn you off so? How cruel, how hard hearted,' I exclaimed! 'Misse,' she replied, 'this made me 'fraid let you see it; I 'fraid you would be angry: I hope she have bigger heart next time, only she forgot now, that Jesus promise to pay her all she give Sarah. Don't be angry, I pray God to give her a great deal bigger heart.'
26. The conviction, that she possessed in an eminent degree the Spirit of Him, who said, 'bless them that curse you,' and prayed for his murderers, rushed upon my mind with energy, and I could compare myself in some measure to those who said 'shall we command fire to come down from Heaven,' &c. I think I never felt deeper self abhorrence and abasement: I left her for a moment, and from the few comforts I possessed, gave her a considerable portion. She received them with the most visible marks of gratitude--arose to depart, went to the door, and then turned, looking me in the face with evident concern.
27. Sarah, said I, what would you have, (supposing she wanted something I had not thought of, and feared to ask) 'O my good Misse,' said she, 'nothing, only 'fraid your big heart feel some proud, 'cause you give more for nothing than Misse--for sand.'--This faithfulness, added to her piety and gratitude, completed the swell of feeling already rising in my soul, and bursting into tears, I said, O Sarah! when you pray that Mrs.--may have a bigger heart, don't forget to pray that I may have a humbler one. 'I will, Misse, I will,' she exclaimed with joy, and hastened on her way.
28. Another excellence in her character, was that she loved the habitation of God's house and often appeared there, when from bad weather or other causes, many a seat of affluence was empty. She was always early, ever clean and whole in her apparel, though sometimes almost as much diversified with patches as
the shepherd's coat. She was very old and quite feeble, yet she generally stood during public service, with eyes rivetted on the preacher.
29. I have sometimes overtook her on the steps, after service, and tapping her on her shoulder, would say, have you had a good day, Sarah? ' All good, sweeter than honey,' she would reply.
30. In the spring of 1818, it was observed by her friends that she did not appear at meeting as usual, and one of her particular female benefactors asked her the reason; when she, with streaming eyes, told her, that her clothes had become so old and ragged that she could not come with comfort or decency; but said she had been praying God to provide for her in this respect, a great while, and telling Jesus how much she wanted to go to his house of prayer, and expressed a strong desire to be resigned and submissive to his will.
31. This was soon communicated to a few friends, who promptly obeyed the call of Providence, and soon furnished this suffering member of Christ with a very decent suit of apparel. This present was almost over-powering to her grateful heart. She received them as from the hand of her heavenly Father and kind Redeemer, in answer to her special prayer. But this did not in the least diminish her gratitude to her benefactors; but said she would go on, tell Jesus how good his dear people was to this poor old creature, and pray her good Father to give them great reward.
32. Two of the garments given her, she received with every mark of joy. On being asked why she set so high a value on these, she replied; ' O, these just what I pray for so long, as to lay out my poor old body, clean and decent, like God's dear white people, when I die.' These she requested a friend to keep for her, fearing to carry them home, lest they should be taken from her. She was, however, persuaded to wear one of them to meeting, upon condition that if she injured that, another should be provided; the other was preserved by her friend, and made use of at her death.
33. Thus was this humble band of female friends
honoured, by anointing as it were the body, before-hand, to the burial. And I doubt not but that her prayer was heard and will be answered in their abundant reward. The last visit I bad from her was in the summer of 1818. She had attended a funeral, and returning, called at my cottage. She complained of great weariness, and pain in her limbs, and showed me her feet, which were much swollen. I inquired the cause: ' O,' said she, with a serene smile, 'Death comes creeping on, I think in grave-yard to-day, Sarah must lie here soon.'
34. Well, are you willing to die? do you feel ready? 'O, I hope, Misse, if my bad heart tell true, I willing and ready to do just as Jesus bid me; if he say you must die, I glad to go be with him; if he say, live and suffer great deal more, then I willing do that; I think Jesus know best. Sometime I get such look of heaven, I long to go see Jesus; see happy angel, see holy saint--throw away my bad heart, lay down my old body, and go where I no sin. Then I tell Jesus; he say, Sarah, I prepare a place for you, then I come take you to myself. Then I be quite like child, don't want to go till he call me.'
35. Much more she said upon this interesting subject, which indicated a soul ripe for heavenly glories. When we parted, I thought it very doubtful whether we should ever meet again below. In the course of three weeks from this time I heard that Sarah was no more. Is Sarah dead? said I; and the inquiry gave rise to the thoughts contained in the following lines:--
36. Is Sarah dead? let not a sigh arise,
To mourn her exit from this world of wo:
Rather let tears of joy suffuse the eyes
That oft have wept her suff'ring state below.
37. Is Sarah dead? then those poor aged limbs,
So long with pain and weariness oppress'd,
An easy bed in yonder grave shall find,
"And long and sweet shall be the sacred rest."
38. Is Sarah dead? then never, never, more,
Shall hunger force her from her wretched cot
With eager step, a morsel to implore,
Where poverty and tears are heeded not.
39. No longer bent beneath a heavy load,
I see her struggle on her weary way,
With lifted hands, imploring strength of God
To bear the heat and burden of the day.
40. That untaught mind shall now lament no more
Its scanty knowledge of God's holy word:
Or grieve that she had not begun before
To banquet on the goodness of the Lord.
41. I lov'd thee, Sarah, for I well could trace
My Saviour's image on thy humble soul;
Your heart the seat of his Almighty grace,
And every action prov'd its sweet control.
42. O happy Sarah! though so poor and low,
That few on thee would cast a pitying look,
Since thy Redeemer deign'd his love to show,
And wrote thy name in life's immortal book.
43. And rather far would I thy triumphs share,
(And ere the triumph all thy sorrows feel,)
Than gain the laurel earthly conq'rors wear,
And all the sceptres kings and princes wield.
44. Thus, while the pen of many a ready writer is employed in imparting instruction, reproof, or correction, to the rising, or risen generation; while the deeds of the mighty are recorded with splendour, the exploits of the heroes proclaimed from the house tops, and the virtues and charities of God's people are exhibited, that others may see their good works and glorify their Father who is in heaven, I would, according to my humble ability, snatch from oblivion the example of one, who, though scorned by the proud, and overlooked by the great, yet was known and beloved by a humble few, and by them the grace of God was magnified on her account.
1. About the year 1802, died, in Pennsylvania, a female slave, named Alice, aged one hundred and sixteen years. She was born in Philadelphia, of parents who came from Barbadoes, and lived there till she was ten years old, when she was removed to Dunk's Ferry, about 17 miles up the Delaware river, near which she lived till the end of her days.
2. A short time before her death, she paid a visit to her native city. Many respectable persons called to see her, who were pleased with her innocent cheerfulness, and that dignified deportment, for which, though a slave and uninstructed, she was remarkable.
3. She was a worthy member of the Episcopal society, and attended their public worship as long as she lived: indeed she was so zealous to perform this duty in proper time, that she has often been met on horse back, galloping to the church, when she was ninety-five years old.
4. The veneration she had for the Bible, made her lament that she was not able to read it: but this deficiency was in part supplied by the kindness of many of her friends, who, at her request, would read it to her, when she would listen with great attention, and often make suitable remarks.
5. She was temperate in her living, and so careful not to tell an untruth, that her veracity was never questioned; and her master had such confidence in her honesty, that she was at all times trusted to receive the ferriage money, for upwards of forty years.
6. When she was one hundred years old, the last of her teeth dropt out. She also about that time became blind, so that she could not see the sun at noon-day: but being used to constant employment, though her last master excused her from her usual labour, yet she did not like to be idle; for she afterwards devoted her time to fishing, at which she was very expert; and even when blind, she would frequently row herself in a boat to the middle of the stream, from which she seldom
returned without a handsome supply of fish for her master's table.
7 About the hundred and second year of her age, her sight gradually recovered a little, so that she could see objects moving before her. She retained her hearing to the end of her life, and before she died, her hair become perfectly white.
8. The honesty, love of truth, veneration for the holy scriptures, attention to religious worship, temperance, and industry of this poor slave, should be a lesson to us; and if we admire her character, if we ourselves wish to become good, let us attend to the good spirit, the spirit of Christ in our hearts, which reproves us, and makes us feel unhappy when we do wrong; but when we mind its reproofs, and humbly endeavour to do what we know is right, gives us that peace of mind which the world cannot give, neither can it take away.
1. JOSEPH RACHEL, a respectable negro, resided in the island of Barbadoes. He was a trader, and dealt chiefly in the retail way. In his business he conducted himself so fairly and complaisantly, that, in a town filled with little pedling shops, his doors were thronged with customers. Almost all dealt with him, and ever found him remarkably honest and obliging.
2. If any one knew not where to obtain an article, Joseph would endeavour to procure it, without making any advantage for himself. In short, his character was so fair, his manners so generous, that the best people showed him a regard which they often deny to men of their own colour, because they are not blessed with the like goodness of heart.
3. In 1756 a fire happened, which burned down a great part of the town, and ruined many of the inhabitants. Joseph lived in a quarter that escaped the destruction, and expressed his thankfulness by softening
the distress of his neighbours. Among those who had lost their property by this heavy misfortune, was a man to whose family Joseph, in the early part of his life, owed some obligations.
4. This man, by too great hospitality, an excess very common in the West Indies, had involved himself in difficulties, before the fire happened; and his estate lying in houses, that event entirely ruined him A-midst the cries of misery and want, which excited Joseph's compassion, this man's unfortunate situation claimed particular notice. The [unclear] enerous, the open temper of the sufferer, the obligations that Joseph owed to his family, were special and powerful motives for acting towards him the part of a friend.
5. Joseph had his bond for sixty pounds sterling. "Unfortunate man," said he, "this debt shall never come against thee. I sincerely wish thou couldst settle all thy other affairs as easily. But how am I sure that I shall keep in this mind? May not the love of gain, especially when, by length of time, thy misfortune shall become familiar to me, return with too strong a current and bear down my fellow feeling before it? But for this I have a remedy. Never shalt thou apply for the assistance of any friend against my avarice."
6. He arose, ordered a large account that the man had with him, to be drawn out: and in a whim, that might have called up a smile on the face of charity, filled his pipe, sat down again, twisted the bond and lighted his pipe with it. While the account was drawing out, he continued smoking, in a state of mind that a monarch might envy. When it was finished, he went in search of his friend, with the discharged account, and the mutilated bond in his hand.
7. On meeting him, he presented the papers to him with this address: "Sir, I am sensibly affected with your misfortunes; the obligations I have received from your misfortunes; the obligations I have received from your family, give me a relation to every branch of it. I know that your inability to pay what you owe, gives you more uneasiness than the loss of your own substance.
8. "That you may not be anxious on my account in particular, accept of this discharge, and the remains of your bond. I am over-paid in the satisfaction that I feel from having done my duty. I beg you to consider this only as a token of the happiness you will confer upon me, whenever you put it in my power to do you a good office"
9. The philanthrophists of England take pleasure in speaking of him:--"Having become rich by commerce, he consecrated all his fortune to acts of benevolence. The unfortunate, without distinction of colour, had a claim on his affections. He gave to the indigent, lent to those who could not make a return--visited prisoners, gave them good advice; and endeavoured to bring back the guilty to virtue. He died at Bridgetown, on that Island, in 1758, equally lamented by blacks and whites, for he was a friend to all."
1. PAUL CUFFEE, the subject of this narrative, was the youngest son of John Cuffee, a poor African, whom the hand of unfeeling avarice had dragged from his home and connexions, and sold into a state of slavery, but who, by good conduct, faithfulness, and a persevering industry, in time obtained his freedom. He afterwards purchased a farm, and having married one of the native inhabitants of America, brought up a family of ten children respectably, on one of the Elizabeth Islands, near New Bedford, Massachusetts.
2. In the year 1773, when Paul was about fourteen years of age, his father dying left a widow with six daughters to the care of him and his brothers. Although he had no learning except what he received from the hand of friendship, yet by that means he advanced to a considerable degree of knowledge in arithmetic and navigation. Of the latter, he acquired enough in two weeks to enable him to command his
own vessel in its voyages to many ports in the Southern States, the West Indies, England, Russia, and to Africa.
3. The beginning of his business in this line was in an open boat, but by prudence and perseverance, he was at length enabled to obtain a good sized schooner, then a brig, and afterwards a ship. In the year 1806, he owned a ship, two brigs, and several small vessels, besides considerable property in houses and lands.
4 Feeling in early life a desire of benefiting his fellow-men, he made use of such opportunities as were in his power for that purpose. Hence, during the severity of winter, when he could not pursue his usual business in his little boat, he employed his time in teaching navigation to his own family and to the young men of the neighbourhood. Even on his voyages, when opportunity offered, he instructed those under his care in that useful art.
5. He was so conscientious that he would not enter into any business however profitable, that might have a tendency to injure his fellow men, and seeing the dreadful effects of drunkenness, he would not deal in ardent spirits on that account.
6. In the place where he lived there was no school; and as he was anxious that his children should obtain an education, he built a house on his own land, at his own expense, and gave his neighbours the free use of it; being satisfied in seeing it occupied for so useful and excellent a purpose
7. In many parts of his history, we may discover those excellent traits of character which rendered him so eminently useful: a steady perseverance in laudable undertakings. It is only by an honest industrious use of the means in our power that we can hope to become respectable.
8. His mind had long been affected with the degraded and miserable condition of his African brethren, and his heart yearning towards them, his thoughts were turned to the British settlement at Sierra Leone. In 1811, finding his property sufficient to warrant the
undertaking, and believing it to be his duty to use a part of what God had given him for the benefit of his unhappy race, he embarked in his own brig, manned entirely by persons of colour, and sailed to Africa, the land of his forefathers.
9. When he arrived at Sierra Leone, he had many conversations with the governor and principal inhabitants, and proposed to them a number of improvements. From thence he sailed to England where he met with great attention and respect; and being favoured with an opportunity of opening his views to the Board of Managers of the African Institution, they cordially united with him in all his plans. This mission to Africa was undertaken at his own expense, and with the purest motives of benevolence.
10. He was very desirous of soon making another voyage, but was prevented by the war, which took place between England and America. In 1815, however, he made preparations and took on board his brig thirty eight persons of colour, and after a voyage of fifty five days, arrived safe at his destined port. These persons were to instruct the inhabitants of Sierra Leone in farming and the mechanic arts. His stay at this time was about two months, and when he took his leave, particularly of those whom he had brought over, it was like a father leaving his children, and with pious admonition commending them to the protection of God.
11. He was making arrangements for a third voyage, when he was seized with the complaint which terminated his labours and his life. He was taken ill in the winter, and died in autumn following, 1817, in the fifty-ninth year of his age. To the benefit of his African brethren he devoted a portion of his youthful acquisitions, of his later time, and even the thoughts of his dying pillow.
12. As a private man, he was just and upright in all his dealings. He was an affectionate husband, a kind father, a good neighbour, and a faithful friend. He was pious without ostentation, and warmly attached to
the principles of the Society of Friends, of which he was a member, and sometimes expressed a few sentences in their meetings which gave general satisfaction. Regardless of the honours and pleasures of the world, he followed the example of his divine Master in going from place to place doing good, looking not for a reward from man, but from his heavenly Father.
13. Thus walking in the ways of piety and usefulness, and in the enjoyment of an approving conscience, when death appeared, it found him in peace, and ready to depart. Such a calmness and serenity overspread his soul, and showed itself in his countenance, that the heart of even the reprobate might feel the wish, "let me die the death of the righteous, and let my last end be like his."
14. A short time before he expired, feeling sensible that his end was near, he called his family together. It was an affecting and solemn scene. His wife and children, with several other relations being assembled around him, he reached forth his feeble hand, and after embracing them all, and giving them some pious advice, he commended them to the mercies of God, and bid them a final fare well.
15. After this, his mind seemed almost entirely occupied with the eternal world. To one of his neighbours who came to visit him, he said, "Not many days hence and ye shall see the glory of God; I know that my works are gone to judgment before me, but it is all well, it is all well."
16. He lived the life, and died the death of a Christian. He is gone whence he never shall return, and where he shall no more contend with raging billows, and with howling storms. His voyages are all over, he has made his last haven, and it was to that of eternal repose. Thither could we follow him we should learn the importance of fulfilling our duty to our Creator, to ourselves, and to our fellow-creatures.
17. Such was his reputation for wisdom and integrity, that his neighbours consulted him in all their important concerns; and what an honour to the son of a
poor African slave! The most respectable men in Great Britain and America were not ashamed to seek to him for council and advice.
18. Thus we see how his persevering industry and economy, with the blessing of Providence, procured him wealth. His wisdom, sobriety, integrity, and good conduct made him many friends. His zealous labours for the honour of his Maker, and for the benefit of his fellow-men, gave him a peaceful conscience. And an unshaken belief in the mercies and condescending love of his heavenly Father, afforded in his dying moments that calmness, serenity, and peaceful joy, which are a foretaste of immortal bliss.
19. The following is an extract from his address to his brethren at Sierra Leone:--"Beloved friends and fellow-countrymen, I earnestly recommend to you the propriety of assembling yourselves together to worship the Lord your God. God is a spirit, and they that worship him acceptably, must worship in spirit and in truth.
20. "Come, my African brethren, let us walk in the light of the Lord; in that pure light which bringeth salvation into the world. I recommend sobriety and steadfastness, that so professors may be good examples in all things. I recommend that early care be taken to instruct the youth while their minds are tender, that so they may be preserved from the corruptions of the world, from profanity, intemperance, and bad company.
21. "May servants be encouraged to discharge their duty with faithfulness: may they be brought up to industry, and may their minds be cultivated for the reception of the good seed which is promised to all who seek it. I want that we should be faithful in all things, that so, we may become a people giving satisfaction to those who have borne the burden and heat of the day in liberating us from a state of slavery.
22. "I leave you in the hands of Him who is able to preserve you through time, and crown you with that blessing which is prepared for all who are faithful to the end." This appears to be the simple expression of his feelings, and the language of his heart.
23. When you have read this account of your brother Paul Cuffee, pause and reflect. Do not think because you cannot be as extensively useful as he was, that you cannot do any good. There are very few, if any people in the world but what may be useful in some way or other. If you have health, you may by your industry, sobriety, and economy, make yourselves and your families comfortable.
24. By your honesty and good conduct you may set them and your neighbours a good example. If you have aged parents, you may soothe and comfort their declining years. If you have children, you may instruct them in piety and virtue, and in such business as will procure them a comfortable subsistence, and prepare them for usefulness in the world.
1. THE following sketch is taken from the very interesting narrative of Solomon Bayley. The fore part was written from an apprehension of duty, the latter part, with those respecting his mother, and his two daughters, at the request of Robert Hurnard, who became acquainted with the author in 1820, while he resided at Wilmington, Delaware; and after his return to England, had it printed, the profits arising from the publication, was designed to be transmitted to America, for the benefit of this aged couple, who live at Camden.
2. In the narrative of his own life he says, "The Lord tried to teach me his fear when I was a little boy; but I delighted in vanity and foolishness, and went astray; but He found out a way to overcome me, and to cause me to desire his favour, and his great help, and although I thought no one could be more unworthy of his favour, yet he did look on me, and pitied me in my great distress.
3. "I was born a slave in the State of Delaware,
and was one of those that were carried out of Delaware into the State of Virginia, and the laws of Delaware did say, that slaves carried out of that State should be free, and I asserted my right to freedom, for which I was put on board of a vessel and sent to Richmond, where I was put in jail, and in irons, and from thence sent in a wagon back into the country. On the third day after we left Richmond, in the bitterness of my heart I was induced to say, 'I am past all hope;' but it pleased the Father of mercy to look upon me, and he sent a strengthening thought into my heart--that He that made the heavens and the earth, was able to deliver me, I looked up to the sky, and then on the trees and ground, and I believed in a moment, that if He could make all these he was able to deliver me.
4. "Then did that Scripture come into my mind, 'They that trust in the Lord, shall never be confounded.' I believed it, and got out of the wagon unperceived, and went into the bushes. There were three wagons in company, when they missed me, they looked round some time for me, but not finding me, they went on; and that night I travelled through thunder, lightning, and rain a considerable distance."
5. His trials and difficulties in getting along were many and various, but at Petersburgh he met with a man from his neighbourhood, circumstanced like himself; they got a small boat, went down the James River, and landed on the eastern shore of the Chesapeake Bay, and travelled to Hunting Creek, where their wives were. 'But,' says he, 'we found little or no satisfaction, for we were hunted like partridges on the mountains.'
6. His poor companion being threatened again with slavery, in attempting to escape, was pursued and killed. On which Solomon makes the following remarks, 'Now, reader, you have heard of the end of my fellow sufferer, but I remain as yet a monument of mercy, thrown up and down on life's tempestuous sea; sometimes feeling an earnest desire to go away and be at
rest; but I travail on, in hopes of overcoming at my last combat.'
7. 'It being thought best for me to leave Virginia, I went to Dover in Delaware, the distance of about one hundred and twenty miles.' By travelling in the night, and laying by in the day time, he at length reached that place, but not without great difficulty by being hunted and pursued.
8. In concluding this part of his narrative he says, "Oh what pains God takes to help his otherwise helpless creatures. O that his kindness and care were more considered and laid to heart, and then there would not be that cause to complain that 'the ox knoweth his owner, and the ass his master's crib, but Israel doth not know, my people doth not consider'--but they would see that they were of more value than many sparrows; and that they are not their own, but bought with a price. Now, unto the King immortal, invisible; the only-wise God, be glory and honour, dominion and power, now and for ever. Amen."
9. In the second part of his narrative, written at the request of R. H., he proceeds by remarking that, "7th Month 24, 1799, I got to Camden, where my master soon came from Virginia and found me, though he had not seen me since he put me on board the back country wagon, near three or four hundred miles from Camden. Upon first sight he asked me what I was going to do? I said, 'How, master I have suffered a great deal, and seen a great deal of trouble, I think you might let me go for little or nothing; he said, 'I wont do that, but if you will give me forty pounds bond and good security, you may be free.'
10. After much conversation between them on the subject of his right to freedom, he continues, "finally he sold my time for eighty dollars, and I went to work, and worked it out in a shorter time than he gave me, and then I was a free man. And when I came to think that the yoke was off my neck, and how it was taken off, I was made to wonder, and admire, and to adore the order of kind Providence, which assisted me in all my way."
11. Here he very feelingly recites the trials and exercises of mind that attended him for not adhering to that wisdom and goodness of his Creator, which had so marvellously been manifested for his deliverance, and then proceeds to relate the circumstances respecting his wife and children. "My wife was born a slave and remained one until she was thirty-two years of age, when her master falling out with her, purposed sending her with my eldest daughter, about three months old, into the back country. To go with her I knew not where, or to buy her at his price, brought me to a stand; but by the pleading of his wife and little daughter, he agreed to let me have her for one hundred and thirty-three dollars and a third, which is thirty-one pounds Virginia money. I paid what money I had saved since paying for my own freedom, and the rest as I earned it, and she was manumitted. But I had one child in bondage, my only son, and having worked through the purchase of myself and wife, I thought I would give up my son to the ordering of Divine Providence.
12. "So we worked and rented land, and got along twelve or thirteen years, when my son's master died, and his property had to be sold, and my son among the rest at public sale. The back-woods-men having come over and given such large price for slaves, it occasioned a great concern to come over my mind, and I told it to many of my friends, and they all encouraged me to buy him, but I told them I could have no heart to do it, because at his master's death he was appraised at four hundred dollars; however, I went to the sale. When the crier said, 'a likely young negro fellow for sale,' and then asked for a bid, I said two hundred dollars.
13. "As soon as I made this bid. a man that I feared would sell him to the back-woods-men. bid three hundred and thirty-three dollars, which beat down all my courage, but a thought struck me, don't give out so, and I bid one shilling, but they continued to bid until they got him up to three hundred and sixty dollars,
and I thought I could do no more, but those men who had engaged to be my securities, encouraged me, and some young men who were present and had their hearts touched with a feeling for my distress, said, 'Solomon, if you will make one more bid we will give you five dollars a piece, so I turned round and said, one shilling, so he was knocked off to me at three hundred and sixty dollars and a shilling: this was in the year 1813.
14. "Then I believed that God would work and none could hinder him, and that a way would be made for me though I knew not how; and I confess the eyes of my mind appeared to be dazzled as I was let into a sight of the great goodness of the Highest in undertaking for me: but I felt a fear lest my behaviour should not be suitable to the kindness and favour shown towards me.
15 "Oh! that all men would study the end of their creation, and act accordingly; then they would walk in the light of his countenance indeed, and 'in His name rejoice all the day, and in his righteousness for ever be exalted.'
" 'Then should their sun in smiles decline,
'And bring a peaceful night.'
Which may all who read these lines, desire, seek, and obtain, through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen."
17. In the account of his mother, he says, "she was born of a woman brought from Guinea about the year 1690, then about eleven years old; she was brought into one of the most barbarous families, and though treated hard she had many children and lived to a great age. My mother had thirteen sons and daughters, and served the same cruel family until they died.
18. "Then great distress and dispersion took place. Our young mistress married, and brought our family out of the State of Virginia into the State of Delaware; but by their removing back to Virginia, we were entitled to our freedom, and attempting to recover it by law, we were sold and scattered wide. My father and two of his children were taken unawares, and sent
to the West Indies. My mother was in the house at the time, but made her escape, leaving a child about eleven months old, which some kind friend carrying to her, she took and travelling through Delaware, went into New-Jersey.
19. "We were separated about eighteen years, except that I once visited her, and carried her seventeen or eighteen dollars, which, in my circumstances, was a sacrifice, but I was favoured to find that satisfaction, which I esteemed more than time or money. Being thoughtful about my mother, I sent for her to come to the State of Delaware, and when we were brought together, it was very comfortable, and we could sit and tell of the dangers and difficulties we had been brought through; she lived to a great age, and departed without much complaint, like one falling asleep.
20. "She was a pleasant child in her manners and behaviour, yet fond of gay dress, and new fashions; yet her mind was much inclined to her book, and to read good lessons. And it pleased the Father of mercy to open her understanding to see excellent things out of his law, and to convince her that it was his will she should be holy here, and happy hereafter; but custom, habit, and shame, seemed to chain her down, so that she appeared like one halting between two opinions.
21. "But about a month before she was taken for death, she went to a meeting, under a concern about her future state; and the meeting appeared to be favoured with the out-pouring of the spirit of love, and of power: Margaret came home under great concern of mind, and manifested a wonderful change in her manners and behaviour; I believe the whole family were affected at the sight of the alteration, which indeed appeared like that of the prodigal son coming home to his father: for my own part, I felt fear and great joy. Such was her delight to read the Bible.
and ask the meaning of certain texts of Scripture which evidenced a concern to make sure work for eternity.
22. "In this frame of mind she was taken for death She appeared very desirous to live for the first four weeks, but was very patient, and of a sweet temper and disposition all the time. I recollect but one instance when she was known to give way to peevish fretfulness; then I, feeling the evil spirit striving to get the advantage of her, very tenderly and earnestly admonished her not to regard trifles, but to look to that Power which was able to save her; and from that time she became passive and resigned.
23. "The following two weeks her pain was great and baffled all the force of medicine. A few days before her departure, she was urged with much broken ness of heart to make confession; when she was let into a view of the vanity of the world, with all its glittering snares; and said, she could not rest till her hair was cut off, for she said, 'I was persuaded to plait my hair against my father's advice, and I used to tie up my head when father would come to see me, and hide ruffles and gay dress from him, and now I cannot rest till my hair is cut off.' I said, no, my daughter, let it be till thee gets well: she answered, 'Oh! no, cut it now,' so I, to pacify her, took and cropped it.
24. "After this she appeared filled with raptures of joy, and talked of going, as if death had lost its sting this was about three days before her departure; she seemed to have her senses as long as she could speak. A little before her speech left her, she called us all, one by one, held out her hand, bade us farewell, and looked as if she felt that assurance and peace that destroyed the fear of death; and while she held out her hands she earnestly charged us to meet her in heaven. Thus ends the account of Margaret Bayley, daughter of Solomon and Thames Bayley, who departed this life the 26th of 3d Month, 1821, aged nearly twenty-four years
25. "I desire now to give the pious a brief account
of the life and death of my youngest daughter, Leah Bayley, who departed this life the 27th of 7th Month, 1821, aged twenty-one years and six months. She from a child was more weakly and sickly than her sister Margaret, and the thought of leaving her here in this ill-natured world, caused me many serious moments, but the great Parent of all good, in the greatness of his care took her away, and relieved me of the care of her for ever.
26. Weakness of body and mind appeared in her as she grew up; and an inclination to vanity and idleness; but being bound out under an industrious mistress, to learn to work and to have schooling, her mind soon became much inclined to her book and then to business. Her school mistress gave her a little book, concerning some pious young people that lived happily, and died happily, and were gone to heaven, namely:--
27. "Young Samuel, that little child,
Who served the Lord, liv'd undefil'd,
Like young Abijah I must be,
That good things may be found in me.
Young Timothy, that blessed youth,
Who sought the Lord, and loved the truth.
I must not sin as others do,
Lest I lie down in sorrow too.
28. "These blessed examples won her heart, so as to bury every other enjoyment; she seemed to possess as great a deadness to the world, as any young woman I ever observed: she seemed not ashamed to read in any company, white or coloured; and she read to the sick with intense desire, which appeared from her weeping, and solid manner of behaviour. She seemed to desire to walk in the fear of the Lord all the day long; and every body that observed her, remarked her serious, steady behaviour. She seemed as if she was trying to imitate those good children whom she read about; and so continued until she was taken sick; and though her sickness was long and sharp, yet she bore it like a lamb.
29. "A few days before her decease, I was noticing how hard she drew her breath; she looked very wistful at me, and said, 'O! father how much I do suffer.' I answered, yes, my dear, I believe thee does. Then after a long pause, she said, 'but I think I never shall say I suffer too much.' This I apprehended was extorted from a view of the sufferings of Christ, and her own imperfections. The day she died, she called us all, one by one, and like her sister Margaret, held out her hand, and with much composure of mind, bade us farewell, as if she was only going a short walk, and to return."
30. I received thy very acceptable letter, and was not a little comforted; I was glad to hear from thee and thy dear family and friends. I believe thou art trying to be a beloved John indeed, or a son of Abraham: for they that are of faith are children of Abraham, and heirs according to the promises. Gal. iii. 7. And the Lord gave a testimony concerning him, saying, I know him that he will command his children and his household after him. Gen. xviii. 19.
31. O, I pray that thou mayst continue to study the business of life which is to prepare for a blessed immortality and eternal life with the Father and the Son, according to the spirit of holiness which works in us both to will and to do of his good pleasure, and if not resisted, will make us one in him in spirit and in truth. O that we might be enabled to walk before the Lord unto all pleasing.
32. I thank thee, dear brother, for mentioning a thought for my temporal and spiritual concerns. I am daily at a loss how to express my thanks to the great Giver of every blessing, who daily loads me with benefits. I think I am enabled by His grace to esteem the cross of Christ more than I used to do: for I learn by
the cross I must be crucified to the world, and the world, unto me. Gal. vi. 14.
33. But O, dear friend, I find that knowledge puffeth up: but it is charity alone that edifieth. 1 Cor. viii. 12. True charity is not puffed up. 1 Cor. xiii. 4. Now no man can have true charity without he love God and keep his commandments. 1 John, v. 2. and ii. 6. which is defined by the blessed Jesus himself in these words: As you would that men should do to you, do ye even so to them. Matt. vii 12.
34. O, if all the world was engaged to run after this command, and follow this best of all rules, then harmony and peace would flow through the minds of all people, nations, tongues, and languages, at once; then righteousness would cover the earth as the waters do the great deep; then his kingdom would come, and his will be done on earth as it is in heaven: then all would be happy and free from all fear which hath torment--live happy--die happy, and all go to heaven according to the will of God our heavenly Father who will have all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. 1 Tim ii. 4.
35. Now unto the King immortal, invisible, to the only-wise God our Saviour, be honour and praise both now and for ever. Amen.
With good wishes to thee and thine, I conclude,
SOLOMON BAYLEY.Camden, Del., 7th Month 24th, 1825.
I will take the liberty in another piece of paper to say something concerning Hayti.
36. It is in depth of thought, and fear and dread I now write unto thee. Truly I have felt a great concern for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh. Of my mother's children, four were sent to the
western countries: my father and two children were sent to the West-Indies, and sold there to Abner Stevens, after we had made attempt to recover our freedom, for being moved out of Delaware into the State of Virginia, after that law had taken place against removing slaves out of one state into another. Now that was all the cause why we were dispersed one from another.
37. But what I have mostly considered is, that of all the distressed family that was dispersed, I was the only one that got back and obtained freedom. Now it seems to me, I was the most unworthy of all the family: yet there was a mind in me to study on that miracle-working Power spoken of in the Scriptures of Truth.
38. Now praised be the name of Him that liveth forever and ever. According to the riches of His grace in Christ Jesus, and my strength of faith in Him, so He worked for me until He brought me out of difficulty and delivered me from the strivings of the people And although it hath pleased Him to take all my children away from me by His great power, and has kept me from falling, while some on the right hand, and others on the left, high and low, rich and poor, white and coloured have fell; made shipwreck--broken up and sold--gone to jail--come out by the poor act, I here a standing monument of mercy; owe no man any thing--clear of all entanglements, and still rejoicing in my portion, (which portion I asked of the Lord, after I had paid for my wife, myself. and children.)
39. Now the portion I asked was this, that I might live poor and plenty, and to be kept clear from all scrapes. And blessed be His great name, I may say, hitherto He has helped me, unworthy as I am; unworthy when He first looked on me to help me, that day I left the back country wagons; and still He doth His help afford me, and encourages me to trust in Him--glory and honour, and praise and thanksgiving, might, dominion and power, be unto Him that sitteth on the throne, and to the Lamb for ever and ever.
39. And now I come to open myself concerning Hayti. I want to go and see it--what it is--the goodness of it--and see the new settlers--and see how they do--and see their situation--and see if they might be encouraged to be contented--and to return and report to my friends in this country, because the minds of a great many have been affected by such a general invitation made by the Haytians.
40. I should be glad to see Long-Island,* * Probably meaning Sierra Leone.
if I could get encouragement from Hayti. I am willing to work some, so I can have time to write and read some by the way.
* Probably meaning Sierra Leone.
41. Now when thou hast received these lines, please to write me thy mind touching my visit to Hayti. I dont want to hurry myself--get ready, and be sure not to go till I get suitable papers--recommendations.
Thy sincere friend,
Dated 3d Month, 26th, 1821.
42. I thank thee, dear Robert, for spending a thought on so poor and unworthy a thing as I am; but I especially thank your God and my God, for putting it into thy heart to inquire any thing about the work of grace on my mind. I trust it is with gratitude I now write unto thee of my call to the ministry: and first I may say.
"God works in a mysterious way,
"His wonders to perform."
43. Secondly, he knows how to get himself honour and praise by the most feeble; for to undertake to make such a creature as I am work in his vineyard, was amazing to me: but there was a great work to do, to make me fit for any thing at all. Surely he called me oftener than he did Samuel, when he was a child. But after I was savingly converted to God, he was pleased
to pour into my heart a measure of his universal love; and when my heart was filled with love towards God, and good will to all mankind, then a longing desire that all people might taste and see the riches of his grace, continued with me day and night: then a strong impression to go in the fear of the Lord and speak to men of all descriptions, seemed to be required of me.
44. But Oh! dear friend, after my mind was thus prepared, I had a great warfare and strife; first with man-fear, and a man-pleasing spirit; then with shame, desire of praise, and a good name.
45. Now dear friend, in this exercise of mind, there were some scriptures came into my mind, to encourage and strengthen me; such as, the II. Corinthians xii. 9. II. Kings v. 4. (enumerating many of this description,) all these scriptures mightily helped to encourage me to go forward in speaking to a dying people the words of eternal life.
46. Oh! what an affecting view of the worth of souls came into my mind; and I thought if I could be made instrumental in the band of the Lord in saving one soul, it would be matter of rejoicing to all eternity. So I went on, trusting in the Lord; but I should soon have fainted in mind, if it had not been for the encouragement I met with, both from God and man. Now to Him that sits upon the throne, be honour and praise, world without end. Amen.
With good wishes to thee and thine, I conclude thy friend.
Written by the late Mrs. Gambold, wife of the Moravian Missionary at Spring Place, in the Cherokee Nation.
1. OUR late beloved sister, Margaret Ann, was born August 20, 1783. Her father, Walter Scott, was agent
in the nation under the British government; and her mother, Sarah Wilburn, was a sister of brother Charles Renatus Hicks.
2. Her first husband was the celebrated Cherokee chief, James Vann; during whose lifetime, she evinced an affection for the missionaries in her neighbourhood at Spring Place; and, as often as it was in her power, attended our meetings: not without evident concern for her soul.
3. In 1808, a negro woman belonging to her, departed this life in the faith of our crucified Saviour; which made a deep and lasting impression on her mistress. February 19, 1809, she had the great grief to lose her husband by means of a violent death. The three years of her widowhood proved the most important period of her life. By the gracious operations of the Holy Spirit on her heart, she learned to know her natural sinfulness.
4. The opinion she had harboured of herself, as being superior to other of her countrywomen, now presented itself to her in a most hideous form, so that she shuddered at the sight of her wicked heart, and felt and acknowledged herself the greatest sinner among them. She cried incessantly for mercy and pardon; and amidst floods of tears sought and found her Saviour.
5. In July, 1812, she again entered the marriage state, with our now widowed brother, Joseph Crutch-field, a cousin of her former husband. His becoming, after some time, a member of our church, and walking by our Saviour's grace, hand in hand with her in the narrow way which leads to life and bliss, rendered the days of their union a truly blessed period.
6. Four years since, she was frequently ailing and her husband, with us, feared greatly that we should have to part with her; we therefore removed her from her farm on Mount Joy to this place, where she abode during the winter months. By the blessing of our Lord upon the simple means used towards her recovery, she was enabled, in the following spring, to return
home; and thinking herself perfectly restored; undertook, as before, the management of her extensive domestic concerns.
7. However, from too great exertions, and frequent colds, her consumptive cough returned, and increased to such a degree, that she was under the painful necessity of relinquishing her wonted activity, and betaking herself to rest. Now, her chief and most agreeable employ, was reading in the New Testament, and the hymn book of the Brethren's church.
8. Last spring we again took her to Spring Place, to her great joy. As riding on horseback apparently proved of benefit to her, she made repeated visits to her friends and relatives at Sogh-ge-lo-gy, and elsewhere, testifying of the Saviour's love to all poor sinners--of his all-sufficient atonement; and of the great happiness we enjoy, even here on earth, in his blest communion. When last with them, she addressed her Indian sisters thus: "My dear sisters, this is perhaps the last time that I shall visit you. I beseech you, most earnestly, consider our poor people, who as yet sit in darkness, and know not our dearest Saviour. O speak to them of his love, his sufferings, and death on the cross! O be active in his cause, he deserves it of you! If it were his holy will, I would gladly stay longer here, only for the purpose of speaking more for him, and of showing more the way to him," &c.
9. These words she spoke amidst a flood of tears; and all the sisters wept, promising by the Saviour's grace, to follow her maternal injunctions. She arrived here in great weakness of body on the 2d September, 1820. She was now no longer able to edify herself by reading, therefore she was very thankful when we read or sung for her.
10. The frequent visits she received from her numerous friends and relations, were improved to the best purpose on her part. The Saviour and his love unto death, even the death of the cross, were, to the last, her chief delight, and the topic of her conversation. Having been honoured to be his messenger of peace
to many of her people, this honour humbled her the more; and she ofttimes was at a loss how to express her sense of the high obligations she lay under to her Saviour, for favouring the vilest wretch, as she deemed herself to be, thus highly, only lamenting, that she was not able to do much more for her gracious Lord.
11. Since the 7th September, she kept her room - On the 16th October, in the presence of a number of friends, whom she solemnly enjoined to give themselves to our Redeemer, she received the last benediction, after a fervent prayer and thanks to him, for what he had proved to his handmaid, the first fruits of the Cherokee nation, during the ten years of her christian life. The feelings of the divine presence on this occasion is beyond description.
12. On the 18th, towards night, she was in great bodily pain. We sung by her bed as usual, and implored our God to shorten the sufferings of this dear bought soul; during which time, with a loud voice, she incessantly besought his coming soon. "Come, come, my dearest Saviour! hasten, oh, hasten, and take me home! I long, I long to be with thee! Thou canst not come too soon." This paroxism of bodily sufferings lasted about half an hour, upon which she fell, as it were, into a sweet slumber; and during our singing some appropriate verses, her longing soul almost imperceptibly left the emaciated body, and went into the arms of her dearest Saviour.
13 Much, very much might be said of her truly edifying Christian life, led in the faith of the crucified Son of God. Yet, in obedience to her repeated most solemn injunctions to her husband, we must stop here, fearing that the little we have said, might not be agreeable to the wishes of our departed sister--for these were her words: "I know assuredly that my name is written in heaven. When I am gone, I pray you say nothing of me, but let my name on earth perish with my body."
1. JOHN WILLIAMS, who lived and died between New-Brunswick and Trenton, in New-Jersey, served me as an apprentice, about four years. He was weakly and subject to indisposition; was a poor coloured boy. Naturally intelligent, he learned to read. Being disposed to use spiritous liquors to excess, and profane language to a dreadful degree, his conduct was a trial to me; yet. at times, he appeared to have serious reflections about himself and the fruits of his ways: and by the medium of instrumental assistance, attended by Divine power and mercy, his conscience became deeply convicted of the sinfulness of his condition.
2. A state of awful dispair ensued, that continued, as nigh as I can recollect, for some months. Abiding therein, the light of Truth so arose towards the conclusion of it; the dread of wrath and punishment were removed, and a sense of pardon experienced, in which joy and love to God and man were shed abroad in his heart, so that now he rejoiced in the Saviour, and gave glory to God in the highest, having peace in his soul and good will to men.
3. Twenty years he was afflicted with rheumatism. And for about twelve years previous to his decease, he was wholly incapable of helping himself. His jaws, body, and limbs, became fixed immoveably for some years before his departure, so that his jaws were locked, his head was bent back as in tetanus, and he could not bear any thing under it to support it, but lay with the pillow under his shoulders. His arms lay as if riveted across his body. One half of his head appeared as if dead: so that he had but one eye through which he could see, and one ear with which he could hear. All the rest of his body appeared to possess but little vitality, except his tongue. Nevertheless he possessed his intellects to admiration; and it was believed, that his soul and spirit were daily and principally exercised in devotion, prayer, and thanksgiving to the hour of his departure from time to eternity.
4. Amid his extreme sufferings, poverty, and helplessness, under which he was so long held in durance, he often expressed much cause for humble thankfulness to the Divine Being, for the great and multiplied mercies conferred by God upon him; and more particularly of affording him time to repent, and abandon his sinful thoughts, words, and inclinations.
5. The happiness and gratitude of his soul, during his uncommon and protracted affliction of body, deserve very particular attention; because it proves that peace and felicity do not consist in the things of this life, nor in health, nor in freedom from pain, but in unison with God, and participating of his divine nature and character, the human will being subjected to the will of God, the love of self being turned to the love of God and his creatures, and our affections to things of this life being converted to things of eternity.
6. He was heard a short time before his death, to express his willingness to live or die, as it might please the Lord to order it; "but," said he, "I do not desire to be restored to health, lest I should become forgetful of my best and greatest good. I am thankful that the Lord has thus afflicted me; I esteem it a great mercy." Words of this import he frequently uttered.
7. I visited him sundry times, as opportunity offered; and to the best of my recollection, his mind appeared happily exercised on things of God. In particular, at one time, when I had agreed to stay all night with him, he was praising God when I came to the door. Having spent the evening in agreeable conversation. and retired to rest, I heard him, when I awoke at different times in the night, in prayer and thanksgiving to God.
8. About the time his jaws were locked up, two of his upper teeth came out very providentially, and through this aperture, he was enabled to receive his sustenance from the spout of a teapot.
9. By his request, he was accustomed to have a book placed before him, in such a manner as to read with his one eye, and learn its contents to admiration;
repeating and singing them over in a spirit of solemnity and gratitude.
10. Some little time before his departure, he desired his nurse to prepare to follow him; for he expected soon to leave her. In the evening, it seemed doubtful if he lived till the morning; and in the morning it appeared doubtful if he lived till the evening.
11. His great support of life had been the elixir of paragoric, which being exhausted, and the messenger who went for more, having unusually protracted his return, his stomach became disordered, a puking ensued, and he died the fifth of third month, 1813.
1. In the year 1821, died in the city of New-York, an aged woman of colour, named Zilpha Montjoy, whose pious circumspect life rendered her an object of peculiar interest to many of her acquaintance; to some of these, whose friendly notice she had experienced, she more than once related the following circumstance. Being a slave, inured to hard labour, she was brought up in such extreme ignorance, as to have no idea that she was an accountable being--that there was a future state: nor even that death was universal, until the sixteenth year of her age, when a girl of her own colour dying in the neighbourhood, she was permitted to attend the funeral. The minister's text was, "Man that is born of a woman is of few days and full of trouble: he cometh forth like a flower and is cut down: he fleeeth also as a shadow and continueth not!" By which and subsequent remarks, she understood that all were to die: that there was a state of existence after death, a preparation for which was necessary while here. She was much affected, and returned home in great agitation.
2. Revolving these things in her mind for several days, she at length asked her mistress whether she had
understood right, that all must die? the reply was, "Go to your work." She continued thus exercised for a considerable time, earnestly desiring to know what she had to do, but had no one to give her instruction. In this tried state, the Lord was pleased to reveal himself, and impress on her untaught mind a belief in an Omnipotent and Omniscient Being, and that his law was written on the heart. Thus gradually becoming calm and settled, her confidence was made strong in him, who, hiding his council from the wise and prudent in their own eyes, "hath revealed them unto babes." And it is believed she was from that time guarded and careful in her conduct.
3. She married, and had two daughters, one of whom was taken at an early age, and placed at so great a distance from her that she never saw her after. The other died when about grown: and being also bereaved of her husband, she was very lonely; but under these trials she appears to have been sustained, as was David when he could say, "Thy rod and thy staff they comfort me."
4. She was a member of the Methodist society, and a diligent attender of their meetings as long as her strength permitted.
5. When she was (as near as can be ascertained) about sixty-eight years of age, the "Clarkson Association for teaching coloured women to read and write," was established. And when she received the information, she offered herself as a scholar, but the teachers endeavoured to dissuade her, telling her she was too old to begin, as she did not know a letter, and her sight was so impaired as to require two pair of spectacles; she however urged admittance, stating that her only motive was a desire to be able to read the Bible, and she believed "the Lord would help her," adding, "we are never too old to do good" And being admitted, she was very diligent in her attendance, and by great perseverance became able to read a little in the New Testament; and one with large print being given her, she prized it very highly, and would frequently
open to and read one of the chapters contained in Christ's sermon on the mount, calling it "the blessed chapter."
6. But notwithstanding her great desire to learn, she did not allow her studies to interfere with her religious engagements; and the time for meeting with her class being fixed on one of the afternoons that the school was taught, rendered it inconvenient to her, but as the school commenced at three o'clock, and the meeting at four, the hour between she generally spent at the school, staying as long as would do, and then going as quickly as she could, to be punctual to the time. Sometimes she has been seen running, when she heard the clock strike, and found herself a little too late.
7. She was industrious and frugal, but being liberated late in life, she barely procured a subsistance; and for the last two or three years, being nearly past labour, was dependent on the benevolence of others: but at no time, however destitute and tried, did she lose her confidence in His power, "who provideth for the raven his food;" often saying at such seasons, "The Lord has been my helper, and I trust in him." And when any favour was conferred on her, she feelingly expressed her gratitude, yet mostly with reference to the Great Supreme, for giving her such kind friends.
8. At a certain time, a friend being unusually thoughtful about her, went to see how she was situated, taking with her a loaf of bread. She found her unable to go out, and without provision; and querying with her, "Zilpha, art thou here alone?" she replied, "No, I am never alone; my Master is with me. When I awake in the night season he talks with me. He has promised to take care of me, and he has done it: he has now sent me that loaf of bread." At another time she said to a person who visited her, "How good the Lord is; I have always something to eat, for if I take my last morsel, some one comes and brings me more before I want again."
9. Her understanding failed, so that for several weeks
before her death she knew very little; but her conversation was innocent, sometimes saying, "If it is the Lord's will to take me, I am willing to go, but I must wait his time." And He was pleased to release her after a short confinement, without any apparent disease but the decline of nature, about the seventy-ninth year of her age. And her remains were decently deposited in the African place of interment, in the city of New-York.
1. BELINDA LUCAS, a woman of colour, living in Chrystie-street, New-York, is about one hundred years old. She retains her faculties remarkably well, and in the spring of 1825, gave the following account of herself. "When I was a small child in Africa, being one day at play in the woods, some people came along; one of whom catched me, and throwing me over his shoulder, ran away with me. After he had got some distance, he put me down and whipped me to make me run. When we came to the water, they put me into the ship, and carried me to Antigua.
2. "Soon after, the captain of a vessel from New-York taking a liking to me, bought me and brought me here. I was then so little, that I slept sometimes at my mistress' feet. I think there was only one house for worship in the city then; and I remember very well that up Broadway there were only a few small houses, and where the college stands it was woods.
3. "I was sold several times, married twice, and had one child, that died young. I was baptized in St. Paul's church not long after it was built; and when I was about forty years old, I bought my freedom for twenty pounds. Not long after I married my last husband; I paid for his freedom, and we went to Charleston. After living there about seven years, he died; and knowing I had many friends and acquaintance in New-York, I came back. I brought a hundred dollars with me, which I put into the church stock. From that I have received seven dollars every year, and with it I buy my winter firewood.
4. "By working early and late, besides my day's work, I earned money, and got a life-lease on this spot of ground, and built this house, and in this room, (which is on the first floor) I have lived many years. The upper part I rent, but sometimes the people have been poor, and could not pay me, then I lost it, but these people pay me very well. I have been asked many times to sell it, but I think it is much better for me to stay quietly here than to be moving about:--and besides, I let Mr.--have fifty dollars, and when he failed, I lost it; and the bad folks have several times taken money out of my chest: and I was afraid if I did sell, I should lose that also, and then I should be very bad off.
5. "As I have no relation of my own, when I am gone, and don't want these things any more, they are to be divided among my husband's folks." A person present told her she should have a writing drawn, to tell how they should be divided; saying perhaps they will quarrel about it She said, "I have told them if they did, them that quarrelled must not have any thing." When asked if she could read, she answered: "Yes, when I was young I learned to spell a little, but I did not know how to put the words together, till I went to the Clarkson School, there I learned to read, and though I can't read all the hard words in the Bible, I can read Matthew and John very well."
6. A representation of the crucifixion of Christ hanging over the chimney piece, she pointed to it, and explained it very intelligibly, remarking that, "to Mary, who was kneeling near the cross, it was said, 'Woman behold thy son'--and to one of those standing by, 'behold thy Mother.'" This representation appeared to afford her much interest in contemplating it, though she looked only to the Lord for consolation, and several times while giving this account, testified of his goodness and mercy to her, saying, "It is the Lord's will that I should be so comfortably provided for. When I was younger, and worked so steadily, the people used to say, Belinda, what do you work so hard for, and
lay up money; you have no children to take it when you are gone?
7. "I did not know then, but the Lord knew that I was to live a great while, and he put it into my heart to do so, and now I have plenty, and trouble nobody for a living. I am unwell this morning, but by and by, when I feel better, I intend to clean up; I used to live very snug and comfortable, I can't get any body now to put up my things for me, so well as I can do it for myself." Her bed had curtains, and appeared to have comfortable covering on it. She had a lookingglass, an arm-chair, a carpet on her floor, and other necessary furniture.
8. She further said: "When I was able, I went often to see the sick, and the suffering poor, and do something for them, and I sometimes prayed by their bedside;" and added: "I believe the Lord heard my prayers."--Placing her hands in an attitude of supplication, and turning her eyes upwards--"I often pray now, and I leave it to Him, and he gives me what I pray for. If he thinks it best for me to live longer yet, I am willing to stay; and if he thinks best to take me away, I am ready to go."
9. On being asked how old she was, she replied: "When Peter Williams was going to Hayti, and he came to see me and bid me farewell, he said, 'Belinda, I have been calculating your age as near as I can from circumstances, and I believe you are about a hundred years old.' I thought I was older, but I suppose he must be correct.
10. "I used to work for the rich folks, and they seemed to love me, and treated me very kindly. Mrs. T--, and Mrs. H--, and many others, have been to see me a great many times. Mr. Livingston, the lawyer, who died at Washington, you remember--with his first wife's father, Mr. Kittletas, I lived, and of him I bought my freedom. And when I went to Mr. Livingston's, he would say, 'Why, Belinda, you have a long life of it here.' I would say, yes, master, the Lord Knows, but I don't, know why I stay so long--but
dear man, he is gone!" On being asked why she lived alone, she said, "If I have somebody with me, they will want other company, and that will make more noise than I like. I love to be still, then I can think. And when I am sick, the people up stairs are kind to me, and do what little I want done."
11. When speaking of reading, she said, "I met with a bad accident lately; I dropped my spectacles in the fire, and it spoiled them: when I can get into the Bowery to Mr.--sotre, I can get another pair, but nobody can get them for me, they would not know how to suit my eyes, and then I always pay cash for what I get; I have found it the best way. In all my life long there has never any body had the scratch of a pen against me.--I have been saving to them plates there, (pointing to her closet) I brought with me from Charleston before Washington's war."
12. In this unpolished narrative, we see the benefit of acquiring steady habits in early life--of honest, persevering industry, and frugality in the use of what was so obtained. From the one hundred dollars put into the Church stock, she has in fifty years received $350, and in such a way as to be particularly useful to her. Her pious care of the sick, her quiet, decent, and comely way of living, with her exertions in learning to read, even at the advanced age of eighty years, are also worthy of peculiar notice.
1. "I offer here neither the history of a saint, a hero, nor a tyrant; I believe there are few events in my life, which have not happened to many, but when I compare my lot with that of many of my countrymen, I acknowledge the mercies of providence in the occurrences that have taken place.
2. "That part of Africa known by the name of
Guinea, to which the trade for slaves is carried on, extends along the sea coast above 3400 miles, from Senegal to Angola, and includes a variety of kingdoms. The most considerable of these is Benin, as it respects its extent, wealth, and richness of soil. It is bounded on the sea 170 miles, and its interior seems only terminated by the empire of Abyssina, near 1500 miles from its first boundaries. In one of the most remote and fertile provinces of this kingdom I was born, in the year 1745.
3. "As our country is one where nature is prodigal of her favours, our wants, which are few, are easily supplied. All our industry is turned to the improvement of those blessings, and we are habituated to labour from our early years; and by this means we have no beggars. Our houses never exceed one story, and are built of wood, thatched with reeds, and the floors are generally covered with mats. The dress of both sexes consists of a long piece of calico or muslin, wrapped loosely round the body: our beds are also covered with the same kind of cloth; this the women make when they are not engaged in labour with the men.
4. "Our tillage is in a large common, and all the people resort thither in a body, and unite in the labour. The land being uncommonly rich, produces vegetables in abundance, and a variety of delicious fruits; also Indian corn, cotton, and tobacco. Our meat consists of cattle, goats, and poultry. The ceremony of washing before eating is strictly enjoined, and cleanliness considered as a part of their religion. They believe there is one Creator of all things, and that he governs all events.
5. "My father being a man of rank, had a numerous family: his children consisted of one daughter, and a number of sons; of which I was the youngest. As I generally attended my mother, she took great pains in forming my mind, and training me to exercise. In this way I grew up to about the 11th year of my age, when an end was put to my happiness in the following manner:--
6. "One day when all our people were gone to their work, and only my dear sister and myself were left to watch the house, two men and a woman came and seizing us both, stopt our mouths that we should not make a noise, ran off with us into the woods, where they tied our hands, and took us some distance to a small house, where we stayed that night. The next morning, after keeping the woods some distance, we came to an opening where we saw some people at work, and I began to cry for assistance, but this made them tie us faster, and again stop our mouths, and they put me into a sack until we had got out of sight of these people. When they offered us food we could not eat; often bathing each other in tears--our only respite was sleep--but alas! even the privilege of weeping together was soon denied us. While enclosed in each other's arms, we were torn asunder, and I was left in a state of distress not to be described.
7. "After travelling a great distance, suffering many hardships, and being sold several times,--one evening my dear sister was brought to the same house: we were both so overcome, that we could not speak for some time, but clung to each other and wept. And when the people were told that we were brother and sister, they indulged us with being together; and one of the men at night lay between us, and allowed us to hold each other's hand across him.
8. "This comfort, small as it may appear to some, was not so to us; but it was of short duration: when morning came we were again separated, and I never saw her more. I remembered the happiness of our childish sports, the indulgence of maternal affection: and fearing that her lot would be still harder than mine, fixed her image so indelibly on my mind, that neither adversity nor prosperity has ever erased it.
9. "I once attempted to run away; but when I had got into the woods, and night came on, I became alarmed with the idea of being devoured by wild beasts, and with trembling steps, and a sad heart, I returned to my master's house, and laid me down in his fireplace, where
I was found in the morning. Being closely reprimanded by my master, he ordered me to be taken care of, and I was soon sold again. I then travelled through a very fertile country, where I saw cocoa nuts and sugar cane.
10. "All the people I had hitherto seen, resembled my own; and having learned a little of several languages, I could understand them pretty well: but now after six or seven months had passed away, from the time I was kidnapped, I arrived at the sea coast, and I beheld that element, which before I had no idea of. It also made me acquainted with such cruelties, as I can never reflect upon but with horror. The first object that met my sight was a slave ship riding at anchor, waiting for her cargo!
11. "When I was taken on board, being roughly handled and closely examined by these men, whose complexion and language differed so much from any I had seen, or heard before, I apprehended I had got into a world of bad spirits, which so overcame me that I fainted and fell. When I came to, their horrible looks, and red faces, frighted me again exceedingly. But I had not time to think much about it, before I was, with many of my poor country people, put under deck in a loathsome and horrible place. In this situation we wished for death, and sometimes refused to eat, and for this we were beaten.
12. "After enduring more hardships than I can relate, we arrived at Barbadoes, in the West Indies. When taken on shore, we were put into a pen like so many beasts, from thence sold and separated--husbands and wives, parents and children, brothers and sisters, without any distinction: their cries excited some compassion in the hearts of those who were capable of feeling, but others seemed to feel no remorse, though the scene was so affecting.
13. "I was with some others sent to America: when we arrived in Virginia, we were also sold and separated. Not long after, Captain Pascal coming to my master's, purchased me, and sent me on board his ship,
called the Industrious Bee. I had not yet learned much of the English language, so that I could not understand their conversation; and some of them made me believe I was going home to Africa: this pleased me very much, and the kind treatment I received made me happy. But when we came in sight of England, I found they had deceived me. It was on board this ship I received the name of Gustavus Vassa.
14. "Having often seen my master, and a lad named Richard Baker, who was very kind to me, reading in books, I had a desire to do so, that I might find out how all things had a beginning. For that purpose, I often took a book, talking to it, and then placing it to my ear to hear what it would say; but when I found it remained silent, I was much concerned.
15. "The summer of 1757, I was taken by a press-gang, and carried on board a man of war. After passing about a year in this service, on the coast of France and in America, on my return to England, I received much kindness, was sent to school, where I learned to read and write. My master receiving the office of lieutenant on board one of those ships, took me with him up the Mediterranean. My desire for learning induced some of my shipmates to instruct me, so that I could read the Bible; and one of them, a sober man, explained many passages to me.
16. "As I had now served my master faithfully several years, and his kindness had given me hopes that he would grant my freedom: when we arrived in England I ventured to tell him so, but he was offended, for he had determined on sending me to the West Indies. Accordingly, at the close of the year 1762, finding a vessel bound thither, he took me on board, and gave me in charge to the captain. I endeavoured to expostulate with him, by telling him he had received my wages, and all my prize money, but it was to no purpose. Taking my only coat from my back, he went off in his boat. I followed them with aching eyes, and a heart ready to burst with grief, until they were out of sight.
17. "The captain, whose name was Doran, treated me very kindly, but we had a tempestuous voyage. When we came in sight of Montserrat, remembering what I had seen in my first arrival from Africa, it chilled me to the heart, and brought nothing to my view but misery, stripes, and chains: and to complete my distress, two of the sailors robbed me of about eight guineas, which I had collected by doing little jobs on board the ships of war, and which I hid when my master took my coat.
18. "Having unladed the ship, and laded her again for sea, the captain sent for me. When, with trembling steps and a faultering heart, I came to him. I found him sitting with Mr. Robert King, a Quaker, and a merchant: when, after telling me the charge he had to get me a good master, said he had got me one of the best on the island. Mr. King also said he had bought me on account of my good character, (to maintain which I found to be of great importance) and that his home was in Philadelphia, where he expected soon to go, and he did not intend to treat me hard. He asked me what I could do. I answered I could shave and dress hair pretty well, and that I had learned to refine wines, I could write, and understood arithmetic as far as the rule of three.
19. "The character Captain Doran had given of my master, I found to be correct. He possessed an amiable disposition, was very charitable and humane. In passing about the Island, I had the opportunity of seeing the dreadful usage, and wretched situation of the poor slaves, and it reconciled me to my condition, and made me thankful for being placed with so kind a master. He was several times offered a great price for me, but he would not sell me.
20. "Having obtained three pence, I began a little trade, and soon gained a dollar, then more; with this I bought me a Bible. Going in a vessel of my master's to Georgia and Charleston, a small venture I took, on my return answered a very good purpose. In 1765, my master prepared for going to Philadelphia.
With his crediting me for some articles, and the little stock of my own, I laid in considerable, which elated me much; and I told him I hoped I should soon obtain enough to purchase my freedom, which he promised me I should have when I could pay him what he gave for me.
21. "Between Montserrat and several ports in America we made many trips. One circumstance occurred when I was in Georgia, that was a serious one to me being in a yard with some slaves one evening, the master coming home drunk, and seeing me, a strange he, with a stout man to help him, beat me so that could not go on board the ship, which gave the captain much anxiety. When he found me, and saw the situation I was in, he wept; but by his kind attention, and that of a skilful physician, I was in a few weeks able to go on board and attend to my business.
22. "Thus passing from one port to another, with my kind master and captain's indulgence, and my own indefatigable industry and economy, I obtained the sum required for my liberty. So, one morning while they were at breakfast, I ventured to remind my master of what he had promised, and to tell him I had got the money--at which he seemed surprised. The captain told him I had come honestly by it, and he must now fulfil his promise. Upon which he told me to get a manumission drawn, and he would sign it: this intelligence my heart leaped for joy. When the whole was finished, and I was in reality free, I felt like another being--my joy was indescribable. My mast and Captain Doran entreated me not to leave there and gratitude induced me to stay, though I longed see Captain Pascal, and let him know I was free.
23. "I now hired as a sailor, and our next voyage was to Savannah. When we were preparing to return and were taking some cattle on board, one of the butted the captain in the breast, which affected him that he was unable to do duty, and died before we reached our port. This was a heavy stroke to me for he had been my true friend, and I loved him a father.
24. "The winter following, I sailed again for Georgia, with a new captain, in the Nancy: but steering a more westerly course than usual we soon got on the Bahama banks, where our vessel was wrecked, but no lives lost. Getting on one of the islands, with some salt provision we had saved, we remained there many days, and suffered much for want of fresh water. When we were almost famished with hunger and thirst, we were found and carried to New Providence, where we were kindly treated. From thence we were taken to Savannah, so to Martinico, and to Montserrat, having been absent about six months, and experienced the delivering hand of Providence more than once, when all human means seemed hopeless.
25. "After relating to Mr. King the loss of the Nancy, and the various hardships we had endured, I again told him my desire to go to England; and although he wished me to remain in his service, he consented, and give me the following certificate:--'The bearer hereof, Gustavus Vassa, was my slave upwards of three years; during which time he has always behaved himself well, and discharged his duty with honesty and assiduity. R. KING.'
26. "Obtaining this certificate, I soon parted with my kind master, and arrived in England. When I here received my wages, I had thirty-seven guineas. I soon found my old Captain Pascal, who was surprised to see me, and asked me how I came back. I told him 'in a ship.' To which he replied, 'I suppose you did not walk on the water.'
27. "I now set my mind on getting more learning, and attended school diligently. My money not being sufficient, I hired myself to service a while; but having a desire to go again into the Mediterranean, I engaged on board a ship, where the mate taught me navigation. While at Smyrna, I saw many caravans from India. Among other articles, they brought great quantities of locusts, a kind of pulse resembling French beans, though longer; they are sweet and palatable.
28. "In the spring of 1773, an expedition was fitted
out to explore a northwest passage to India. Doctor Irving concluding to go, I accompanied him, and we went on board one of the vessels the 24th of May, and about the middle of June, by the use of the Doctor's apparatus for making salt water fresh, we distilled from twenty-six to forty gallons a day. On the 28th, we reached Greenland, where I found the sun did not set. We saw large fields of ice, and to one of them about eighty yards thick, we made our vessel fast: but we soon became so surrounded with ice that we could not move, and were in danger of being crushed to pieces.
29. "In this perilous situation we remained eleven days, when the weather becoming more mild, and the wind changing, the ice gave way, and in about thirty hours, with hard labour, we got into open water to our great joy, and arrived at Deptford, after an absence of four months, wherein we had experienced imminent dangers.
30. "Rejoicing to be again in England, I entered into service, and remained a considerable time; during which, I began to reflect seriously on the many dangers I had escaped, particularly in my last voyage, and it made a serious impression on my mind, and my reflections were often turned to the awfulness of eternity
31. "In this state I took to my Bible, rejoicing that I could read it for myself, and I received encouragement. While my mind was thus seriously impressed I went several voyages to Spain, and being often led to look over the occurrences of my past life, I saw there had been a hand of Providence to guide and protect me, though I knew it not; and when I considered my obligations to the Lord for his goodness, I wept.
32. "On our return the last voyage, we picked up eleven Portuguese. Their vessel had sunk, with two of the crew, and they were in a small open boat, without victuals, compass, water, or any thing else, and must soon have perished. As soon as they got on board our vessel, they fell on their knees and thanked God for their deliverance. Thus I saw verified what was written in the 107th Psalm.
33. "From the year 1777 to 1784, I remained more quiet: but about the latter period I made a trip to New-York, and one to Philadelphia. At the latter place, I was very much pleased to see the worthy Quakers easing the burdens of my oppressed countrymen: it also rejoiced my heart when one of these people took me to the free school, and I saw the children of my colour instructed, and their minds cultivated, to fit them for usefulness.
34. "Not long after my return, I found government was preparing to make a settlement of free people of colour on the coast of Africa, and that vessels were engaged to carry such as wished to go, to Sierra Leone. I engaged as commissary, and we set sail with 426 persons. But on our arrival there, the rainy season having commenced, proved unfavourable, and some of us soon returned to England; where, since that period, I have been doing what I could for the relief of my much injured country people. 35. "Having been early taught to look for the hand of God in minute circumstances, has made them of consequence to me; and aiming at simple truth in relating the incidents of my life, I hope some of my readers will gather instruction from them."
36 Gregorie, in his inquiry into the intellectual and moral faculties of the Negroes, states, that after thirty years of a wandering and stormy life, Vassa established himself in London, where he married and published his memoirs, which have been several times reprinted, the last edition in 1794. And it is proven by the most respectable testimony that he was the author. In 1789, he presented a petition to Parliament, for the suppression of the slave-trade.
37. He also says, that a son of his, named Sancho, having received a good education, was an assistant librarian to Sir Joseph Banks, and secretary to the committee for Vaccination. And concludes with this remark: "If Vassa still lived the bill which was lately passed, prohibiting the slave-trade, would be consoling to his heart, and to his old age."
[From the History of Hayti.]
1. FROM the best information that can be obtained, he was born in a state of slavery, on the Island of St. Domingo, (now Hayti,) about the year 1745. Though there is but little said of his early life, yet it appears that he was noted for his benevolence, and tender feeling towards the brute creation: and a stability of temper that scarce any thing could discompose. At the age of twenty five, he took upon himself the cares of domestic life, and having several children, they were the objects of his tender, affectionate, and parental solicitude.
2. By assiduous labour he learned to read and write, and also made some progress in arithmetic. This, with his regular and amiable deportment, gained him the love and esteem of his master, who took him from the field and made him his coachman. This was a post of considerable dignity and profit. The increased leisure this situation afforded, was employed in cultivating his talents, and collecting those stores of information, which enriched his mind, polished his manners, and prepared him for a more extensive and important sphere of action.
3. When the insurrection of the negroes took place in 1791, Toussaint was still a slave on the plantation where he was born, but refrained from taking any part in the first revolutionary movements. Many of the planters made their escape from the Island, and fled with their families to foreign countries; but the master of Toussaint was one who, not having made an early escape, was on the point of falling into the hands of the infuriated blacks. But his humane and beneficent treatment of this worthy slave, was not forgotten. And at the risk of his own life. he prepared for the emigration of his master and family to North America, and found means to embark a considerable quantity of produce for their support in exile. Nor did his care end
here: after their settlement at Baltimore in Maryland, he availed himself of every opportunity to send them some additional proof of his friendship and gratitude.
4. Not long after this, he was placed in a conspicuous station, where the excellencies of his character unfolded themselves more and more as opportunities offered for their development; and the same amiable dispositions which adorned his humble life, continued to distinguish him in his elevation. One who was opposed to him in politics, says, "He has a fine penetrating eye, and is extremely sober by habit, and his activity in the prosecution of his enterprises is incessant, and allows very little time for settled repose, or for his meals." If there was one trait in his character more conspicuous than the rest, says the historian, it was his unsullied integrity. That he never broke his word, was a proverbial expression even among those who sought occasion against him. Though he for a considerable time possessed unlimited power, he has never been charged with its abuse.
5. Four Frenchmen who had been guilty of treachery, being taken, and remembering the example set by their general, every one expected to be put to a cruel death. Leaving them however in a state of suspense as to their fate. Toussaint ordered them to be brought into church the following Sunday, and while that part of the service was pronouncing which relates to mutual forgiveness, he went with them to the front of the altar, where, after endeavouring to impress their minds with the heinousness of their conduct, he ordered them to be discharged without further punishment.
6. There having been considerable disturbance on the Island, by the interference of the English and French governments, but having come to an amicable adjustment of affairs, it was deemed proper for the British General Maitland to make Toussaint a visit, previous to his embarkation. Though their business was not fully settled, yet confiding in the integrity of Toussaint, the general went with only two or three of his attendants. Before he arrived, Toussaint received
a letter from one of his partizans, advising him to retain the British general. And on the general's arrival, Toussaint was not to be seen immediately, but at length he appeared with two letters in his hand. "There, general," said he, "before we talk together, read these: one is a letter just received from Roume, (the French commissioner,) and the other is my answer. I would not come to you until I had written my answer to him, that you may see how safe you are with me, and how incapable I am of baseness."
7. General Maitland, on reading the letters, found one an artful attempt to persuade Toussaint to seize his guest, as an act of duty to the republic; and the other a noble and indignant refusal. "What!" said Toussaint in his letter to the perfidious Frenchman, "have I not passed my word to the British general? How then can you suppose that I will cover myself with dishonour by breaking it? His reliance on my good faith leads him to put himself in my power, and I should be for ever infamous, if I were to act as you advise. I am faithfully devoted to the republic; but will not serve it at the expense of my conscience and my honour."
8. When these negotiations were settled, he devoted his undisturbed attention to the arts of peace. And one of his first objects was the regular cultivation of the soil,--upon which the prosperity of every country materially depends. Slavery being now done away on the Island, the planters who returned were obliged to employ their labourers on the footing of hired servants, and the negroes were required to labour for their own subsistence.
9. Obliged to work but in a moderate manner, and for suitable wages, and at liberty to choose their own masters, the plantation negroes were generally contented, healthful, and happy; and in due time, the Island reached a state of refinement and ease, scarcely to be credited. A writer who visited the Island, says, "the men in general are sensible and polite, and many of the women are very engaging."
10. As the Islanders had now thrown off the shackles of slavery, it appeared necessary for the well ordering of government, that a new constitution should be framed. In this work, assisted by some of the Europeans, Toussaint acted a conspicuous part, which after being prepared, was submitted to a general assembly convened from every district, by whom it was approved and adopted, and proclamation thereof made in due form on the first day of July, 1801.
11. In the autumn of that year, every part of St. Domingo was in quiet submission to their negro chief, and rapidly improving in wealth and happiness, under a wise administration. The cessation of hostilities between Great Britain and France, gave the latter an opportunity of turning its attention to another object, which was that of endeavouring to bring again the Island of St. Domingo under that government, for which purpose they made such preparations as they thought sufficient; but being disappointed in their calculations, they had recourse to artifice.
12. Toussaint being sensible of the value of education, and not finding means at home for accomplishing his object, had sent his two eldest sons to France for that purpose. These youths were taken from their studies by Buonaparte, and sent with their tutor to St. Domingo, with a hope that Toussaint's feelings would be wrought upon by seeing his sons, and the tutor had special orders from Buonaparte not to leave them, unless Toussaint complied with his wishes in submitting to the French government.
13 On their arrival at Cape Francois, they were soon conducted to Ennery, Toussaint's country residence. When they arrived, Toussaint was absent, but his faithful wife received her sons as an affectionate mother might be expected to welcome her children, after an absence of several years. Improved both in stature and accomplishments, they now appeared in the vigour and loveliness of youth.
14. The crafty Frenchman accepting an invitation to stay until Toussaint should arrive, made use of this
interval to persuade his hostess as he had done many others, that the French government had no design against their freedom, only that by submitting they might be again united. This tale was so artfully told, that the unsuspecting wife, having a desire for tranquillity and its attendant enjoyments, sent a messenger immediately for her husband, who was at such a distance, that although he travelled with all possible speed, did not reach home until after the middle of the second night.
15. The two sons ran to meet their father; and he, with emotions too big for utterance, clasped them silently in his arms. Few who have any feelings of even humanity, could have beheld such a scene without being moved thereby. But this cold blooded emissary, beheld it with a barbarous apathy. When the first burst of paternal feeling had a little subsided, Toussaint stretched out his arms to enclose him, whom he regarded with respect as the tutor of his children, and their conductor to the embraces of their parents. "The father and the two sons," says the tutor, "threw themselves into each others arms. I saw them shed tears, and wishing to take advantage of a period I conceived to be favourable, I stopped him at the moment when he stretched out his arms to me."
16. Retiring from the embrace of Toussaint, he endeavoured to persuade him to accede to the proposals of Bonaparte. Describing in glowing colours the advantage to be gained by joining the French government, declaring that no design was entertained of infringing on the liberties of the blacks; and desiring him to reflect on the situation of his children, who, unless he would submit, were to be immediately taken back, never more, perhaps, to gladden the hearts of their parents. He concluded his perfidious speech, by putting into Toussaint's hand a letter from the French General at the Cape, accompanied by one from Bonaparte.
17. These letters were couched in all the arts of intrigue, combined with that of persuasive eloquence. In the letter from Bonaparte was the following paragraph:
"We have made known to your children, and their preceptor, the sentiments by which we are animated--we send them back to you--what can you desire? the freedom of the blacks? You know that in all the countries we have been in, we have given it to the people who had it not." Tell the people of St. Domingo, that "if liberty be to them the first of wants, they cannot enjoy it but with the title of French citizens."--"Rely without reserve on our esteem, and conduct yourself as one of the principal citizens of the greatest nation in the world ought to do."
18. Isaac, the eldest son, next addressed his father, representing the great kindness his brother and himself had received from Bonaparte, and the high esteem he had professed for Toussaint and his family. The youngest son added something that he had been taught to the same effect; and both with artless eloquence, endeavoured to win their father to a purpose, of the true nature of which they had no suspicion. To their persuasions, was also added the tears and intreaties of their distressed mother.
19. Toussaint appeared to hesitate amidst these tender solicitations. Coisnon, the tutor, observing these appearances with savage pleasure, got a little off his guard, and discovered his base design. Toussaint, gently disengaging himself from the embraces of his wife and children, took him into another apartment, and gave him this decision: "Take back my children, since it must be so. I will be faithful to my brethren and my God."
20. Finding all his endeavours fruitless, Coisnon proposed a negotiation with the French General at the Cape. Toussaint, unwilling to prolong the painful domestic scene by staying to write at Ennery, nor would he risk another sight of his children, but within two hours after his arrival he left his home again: and writing next day to the General, he despatched Granville, the tutor of his other sons, with the letter--who overtook Coisnon with the two lads, on their way to the Cape. By this negotiation, Toussaint was not able
to obtain his desired object; which was the independence of that republic.
21. This was in the early part of 1802; and the French troops, after several months unsuccessful attempts to bring the negroes into subjection, becoming very sickly, the whole city was like a hospital, and great numbers fell victims to the pestilential disease. The French, by their frequent proclamations, and their declarations to maintain liberty and equality on the Island, at length gained many of the blacks, among whom were Christophe, and a brother of Toussaint's.
22 Negotiations were again entered into with Toussaint, and an agreement made, that he should, with the beforementioned brother, and Christophe, be honoured with a dignified retirement from public life, and by the first week in May, all things were fixed. A letter from the French General contained the following passage: "With regard to yourself, you desire repose, and you deserve it. I leave you at liberty to retire to which of your estates you please."
23. Toussaint retired to a small plantation, called by his own name, situated on the southwest part of the Island. There, in the bosom of his remaining family, (for his two sons who had been under the care of Coisnon, were never heard of after their return to the Cape with their perfidious tutor) he entered upon the enjoyment of that repose, of which he had long been deprived. But the French General, no sooner perceiving the confidence Toussaint had placed in him, than he committed one of the basest acts of treachery.
24. About ten days after Toussaint had retired to his plantation, where it is probable he was engaged in laying plans for the comfortable enjoyment of the domestic circle in his declining age--under cover of the night, and while himself, and the faithful companion of all his cares, were with their family wrapped in silent sleep, unconscious of their danger, a band of soldiers surrounding his house, some of them entering his chamber, commanded him with all his family, to go immediately on board a vessel then in the harbour.
25. Resistance being useless, he quietly submitted to his own fate, but for his feeble wife and innocent children, he asked the privilege of remaining at home: this request however just, was not granted. And before their friends and neighbours had any knowledge of it, the family, including the daughter of a deceased brother, were on board the vessel and under sail; and they were taken directly to France. To justify this base act, the French General circulated a report, that Toussaint bad engaged in a conspiracy; but the time was so short, there could be no grounds even for such a suspicion.
26. On their passage to France, he was refused all intercourse with his family; he was constantly confined to his cabin, and the door was guarded by soldiers. When they arrived at Brest, no time was lost in hurrying him on shore--on the deck only, was he permitted to have an interview with his wife and children, whom he was to meet no more in this life.
27. The separation of this faithful pair, and their beloved offspring, was such as might be expected, and excited in those who beheld it, compassion for their fate. He was conveyed in a close carriage to the castle of Joux, in Normandy, where he was out in close confinement, with only one attendant, who was as closely confined as himself.
28. Toussaint's family were detained at Brest for two months, and then were removed to Bayonne. From that time they disappeared from the land of the living, but by what means, is unknown.
29. At the approach of winter, Toussaint was taken to Besancon, and there confined in a cold, damp, and gloomy dungeon, like one of the worst of criminals- It has been confidently asserted by respectable authority, that the floor of the dungeon was covered with water. Let the reader imagine the dreadful situation of such a prison, to one who had been born, and lived near three-score years, enjoying the necessaries, and the latter part of the time even the luxuries of life, in
a West India climate, and he must feel a tender compassion for the poor afflicted, suffering Toussaint!
30. In this deplorable situation, without any alleviation, he lingered through the winter, and died in the spring of the following year His death was announced in the French papers of the 27th April, 1803.
1. About the year 1738, a man and his wife, named Tom and Caty, who were in bondage to Thomas Bowne, on Long-Island, had a little son whom they called Billy. This little boy when old enough to work, was sold to a farmer in the neighbourhood; who, according to the custom of those days, went with his servants into the field, and allotted to each one his portion of labour. By this means, Billy became acquainted with the different branches of husbandry, and was inured to industry. With this farmer he was pretty comfortably cared for, and kept to his daily labour until the thirty-first year of his age.
2. About the year 1744, the master of one of those ships employed in bringing the poor Africans from their native land, among others, brought away a little girl--too young, alas! to tell even by what means, or in what way she was taken. Neither was she capable of telling the situation in which she left her bereaved parents; who, if they were not taken themselves, must have had many anxieties and sorrowful moments, known only to those who are parents, and who may have been deprived of their children in a similar way. Her being marked in the forehead and temples, indicated her parents being persons of distinction.
3. This little girl, after suffering all the hardships attendant on her situation, and a long confinement on ship board, was landed in New-York, and sold according to the then custom. She was bought by Samuel Underhill, and taken to Long-Island to wait on his
wife and children, and they called her Jenny. As she advanced in age, she became more and more useful in her master's family, and satisfied with her situation.
4 Her mistress being a woman of an uncommonly amiable disposition, having known the subjugation of her own will, by the operation of that principle, which brings into harmony all the discordant passions, and one of that description also, that "looked well to the ways of her household, and eat not the bread of idleness,"--she was qualified to govern her family with mildness and discretion, and to set them an example of economy, sobriety, cheerfulness, and industry.
5. Jenny, being placed under the tuition of such a mistress, in due time became qualified to fill the station allotted her with propriety; as an honest, sober, industrious, and useful servant. When she had arrived at about the twentieth year of her age, she was visited by the beforementioned Billy, in the character of a suitor. After mature deliberation, and their affections becoming more strongly fixed--with the approbation of those concerned, the marriage ceremony was performed.
6. Thus were they united, not only in the bands of wedlock, but those of sincere affection, which abundantly manifested itself in their conduct towards and respect for each other, during a long and laborious life, and in their care of their numerous offspring, which consisted of nine sons and one daughter.
7. Time passing on with them, they partook of such a share of happiness as their situation in life would permit, until the year 1769, when the master of Jenny, having purchased a farm in Westchester County, was preparing to remove his family thither This circumstance became a very close trial to this affectionate pair, who by this time had several children.
8. The thoughtfulness and anxiety felt by them on this occasion being reciprocated by their masters, a proposition was made for an exchange. The wife of one of Billy's fellow-servants being in the family with Jenny, accommodations were soon made, and Billy
admitted a resident in the family with his beloved partner: when they all proceeded to their new settlement, where they lived in harmony and concord for many years, and until their master's children were all married and settled.
9 During this period, Billy and Jenny, with all their children, were liberated by their master, and such of them as were old enough, were placed where they might be brought up to habits of industry, and be prepared to provide for themselves a comfortable subsistence, but Billy and Jenny remained with him.
10. Age and infirmity at length put a period to their king master's life. And his family being thus deprived of his care and exertions, were induced to leave their abode. The mistress, who had long exercised an affectionate care over her household, finding herself lonely, retired to live with her children. And with her youngest son, she remained to an advanced age, and was then gathered into rest, as a shock of corn in its season
11. Billy and Jenny having a house provided for them, remained under the care of their former master's descendants, and with their own industry, and the generosity of their friends, they were comfortably situated. But when Billy was by infirmity so disabled that he could not work as a day-labourer, he cultivated a little garden, and did some light jobs for his neighbours.
12. Their children being out, while Jenny's health and strength remained she went out to washing and house-cleaning. Billy generally waited on her to the place of destination, and then returning to his habitation, nursed his garden and poultry until towards evening, when he would go and accompany her home. More genuine politeness, and unremitting attention between a man and his wife, are rarely to be found in city or country, than was manifested by this sable pair.
13. Thus they lived several years; but Jenny at length became enfeebled by age and her sight failed, so that she was no longer capable of labouring abroad,
nor using her spinning-wheel at home, as heretofore, which made it necessary for them to be placed in a different situation.
14. One winter while they remained at house-keeping, there came a very severe snow-storm, with high wind, so that passing from one place to another was rendered very difficult for several days. As soon as practicable, their friend who had the care of them, and supplied their wants, went to see how they fared. When Jenny meeting him at the door, and being asked how they were, &c., said, "Oh, master R--, I am wonderful glad to see thee--if the storm had lasted much longer. I believe we should have froze to death; our wood was most gone, and Billy is one of the honestest negurs in the world; for he had rather freeze to death than steal a rail from the fence." This circumstance is recorded as one specimen of their honest simplicity.
15. In the spring of 1815, they were removed to the habitation of one of their sons, where they were boarded, and remained, until death, the destroyer of all earthly comforts, put a period to Jenny's life, after a few days severe illness, about the seventy-eighth year of her age.
16. The same affectionate attachment that pervaded her mind in youth and in health, remained unshaken to the last. Her sight, as before remarked, being almost gone, when lying on her bed, she frequently inquired for Billy; but when she was told he was lying behind her, or sitting by her, she was satisfied. Thus she closed a long and laborious life, beloved and respected for her many good qualities, and her consistent conduct.
17. Billy is yet living, but very much enfeebled by age; and his friends endeavour to cheer his lonely situation and to make him as comfortable as his infirmities will permit him to be.--1825.
1. DIED at St. Croix, in the West Indies, in 1801, a man of colour named Cornelius; this man was in many respects distinguished among his countrymen. About fifty years ago, he became concerned for the salvation of his soul, and attended the preaching and instruction of Frederick Martin, who treated him with peculiar kindness.
2. In 1749, he was baptized, and ever after continued steadfast in his profession. He had learned the business of a mason, and was appointed master-mason to the royal buildings; and laid the foundation of each of the six chapels belonging to the mission in these Islands. He was able to write and speak several languages. He continued a slave until 1767, having first purchased the freedom of his wife, and then laboured hard to gain his own liberty, which he effected, and that also of six children.
3. After his emancipation, he exerted himself greatly in the service of the Lord, among his own people particularly; often spending whole days and whole nights visiting them on the different plantations. He possessed a peculiar talent for expressing his ideas with clearness, which rendered his discourses pleasing and edifying, as well to white people as to those of his own colour. To assist the feeble and indigent, were the delight of his heart, and they always found in him a sympathising friend, and faithful adviser.
4. While thus zealously exerting himself in promoting the welfare of others, he did not neglect the concerns of his own family; he gave proof of his care for their temporal prosperity, by working hard to purchase their freedom; but he was more solicitous for the welfare of their souls, and his instructions were blessed.
5. The infirmities of age increasing upon him, he was fearful there was a declension in his love to Jesus Christ. A few days before his end, he said to a friend who visited him, "I ought to have done more, and
loved and served my Saviour better. Yet I firmly trust that he will receive me in mercy, for I come to him as a poor sinner, having nothing to plead but his grace and righteousness, through his blood.
6. His children, and several of his grand-children being round his bed, he addressed them in a very solemn and impressive manner, to the following effect: "I rejoice exceedingly, my dearly beloved children, to see you once more together before my departure; for I believe my Saviour will soon come, and take your father to himself. You know, dear children, what my chief concern has been respecting you, as long as I was with you: how frequently I have exhorted you not to neglect the day of grace, but to surrender yourselves, soul and body, to your Redeemer, and to follow him faithfully. Sometimes I have dealt strictly with you, in matters which I believed would bring harm to your souls, and grieve the Spirit of God, and I have exerted my parental authority to prevent mischief; but it was all done out of love to you. If I have been sometimes too severe, I beg you to forgive me--oh! forgive your poor dying father!"
7. Here he was obliged to stop, most of the children weeping aloud. At last, one of the daughters recovering herself, said: "We, dear father, we alone have cause to ask forgiveness, for we have often made your life heavy, and have been disobedient children." The rest joining in the same confession. The father then continued: "Well, my dear children, if all of you are satisfied, then attend to my last wish and dying request. Love one another!--Do not suffer any quarrels and disputes to arise among you after my decease.--No, my children," raising his voice, "love one another cordially. Let each strive to show proofs of love to his brother or sister; nor suffer yourselves to be tempted by any thing to become proud; for by that you may even miss of your soul's salvation, but pray for lowly minds and humble hearts. If you follow this advice of your father, I shall see you again in eternal bliss, and be able to say, here, Lord, is thy poor unworthy
Cornelius, and the children thou hast given me I am sure our Saviour will not forsake you; but I beseech you, do not forsake him."
8. He fell gently asleep in Jesus, on the 29th November, 1801; being, according to his own account eighty-four years of age.
1. HE was born on the West Coast of Africa, about the year 1800. When nine years old, he was taken into the Missionary School at Bashia, not far from the place of his birth. He was of a teachable, affectionate disposition, and a pleasing countenance, and very much gratified with the pains that was taken to instruct, instruct only himself, but the African children, in piety and in literature.
2. Having heard, that where the missionaries came from, the people were all called Christians, he was desirous of going thither, that he might qualify himself to be useful to his countrymen. His father wishing him to go, Mr. Bickersteth consented to bring him, if he would promise to do what he bid him. Simeon agreed to do every thing he wished him to, and he never broke his promise. They left Africa in July 1816, and in a little more than a month, they reached England. On landing, many things attracted his notice; but nothing gave him so much pleasure as attending religious meetings.
3. He was placed in the National School, in Shoe Lane, where he soon rose to the first class; but being unwell, it was feared that the climate would not suit his constitution, and a proposition was made for him to return to Africa, which agitated him very much, and he said to a person who was conversing with him on the subject, "You send me back to my country people! I have not got good learning yet: I not teach them.
I do them no good." The person replied: "You know, Simeon, that if you stay here, it is most likely you will die, and then you cannot be useful to them: but if you go back, you may learn what is good in Africa. He then raised himself up in bed, threw his arms round the neck of his friend, and said, "If I die, that be God's will--God do right: but if I live and stay here, then I learn so that I teach my country people about Jesus Christ. I do not like to leave you."
4. As he thus cheerfully resigned his life to God. it was thought best to indulge him with staying. He gradually recovered from his sickness, and his gratitude, exemplary conduct, meek and affectionate spirit, increased the love of those about him. When the Scriptures were read and explained in the family, he was always attentive, and he became so well acquainted with them, that the could readily find passages when adverted to. He had been taught a strict observance of the Sabbath, and a reverence for the Sacred Name; and when he saw the one violated, and the other taken in an irreverent manner, it shocked his feelings very much. And having a great abhorrence to lying, he never was known to deviate from the truth on any occasion.
5. Not many months after Simeon's arrival, another black boy came from Africa, named John Maxwell. He went to the same school, and they became very intimate; but John not having those serious impressions on his mind, he often committed faults with which Simeon was grieved, and he manifested towards him a truly Christian disposition, and would advise and caution him in an impressive manner.
6. Not long before his last sickness, he attended a meeting of the Clerkenwell Missionary Associations, where much was said, and very feelingly, concerning his countrymen, which affected him deeply, and he was sensible that the Lord's goodness extended to people of all colours, and of all climes. He was confined to his bed the 16th of July, and the servants of the family waited on him with unwearied affection. He was attended
by medical men, who strove to recover him to health and usefulness, but could not.
7. A person who watched over him with kind and affectionate attention during his illness, has furnished the following information:--"He delighted in prayer, and in hearing the Bible read to him; and reminded me of a tender lamb, which the faithful Shepherd bears in his arms, and nurses in his bosom. I asked him sometimes if he was comforted in his mind. Can you think on the Saviour? 'Yes.' Have you hope that your sins are forgiven you? 'O, yes--he has shed his blood for me.'
8. "He was very grateful for every thing that was done for him. He desired me one day to read some chapters in the Bible. I read the third and seventeenth chapters of John, and made some remarks on them. After being silent about half an hour, he said, "True repentance! pardoning grace! sanctification!"--and frequently repeated them. I asked him if he wanted any thing. He answered: 'No! I must be silent and pray. I have very much to think respecting true repentance.' He was through the night very silent, and much occupied in prayer.
9. "At another time, after I had prayed with him, and desired that the Lord would give him patience, and teach him by his Holy Spirit, that all afflictions which he sends to his children, work together for their good, he said, 'God hear this prayer,' and soon after, 'Amen! God hear this prayer.' One evening he said, 'Pray, and read the Bible; when I hear you read or pray, then I am comforted.--Does Mr. B--(who was gone on a journey) know I am sick?' I answered yes, and he will pray for you. Smiling and clasping his hands, he said, 'Yes, he will; and he will send a letter to Simeon--ah! dear Massa!'
10. "In the fourth week, his illness had considerably increased, and his mental faculties were affected, and he observed that his memory was short through sickness, but he loved his Bible, and was glad to hear it read during the sleepless hours of the night. When
he was spoken to, he would often say, 'I must be silent: I have much to think on, and to pray for: I must be really converted.'
11. "The Holy Spirit seemed to be more and more preparing him for his heavenly mansion. After I had communicated something comfortable to him, he remarked with a smiling countenance, 'That is a joyful message'--meaning it was adapted to his state--'I am comfortable--I feel no pain--all is over--I pray only that I may love the Saviour more, who is so kind to me.' It was delightful to see him so happy.
12. "He one day asked for some paper, and tried to write, but being too weak to hold the pen, he said, 'Mr. Decker, tell the boys at Bashia,' naming four of them, 'that Simeon is going to the Saviour in heaven, but he prays with his dying lips to the Lord, that they may turn with all their hearts to Jesus, and may be really converted by the power of the Holy Spirit. He begs them to give over all their hearts to Him, that none of them by remaining in unbelief and sin may be lost: but that all, as true believers, may meet with him in heaven,' When his friend said, Simeon, you are very happy, you will in a short time see the Saviour on whom you have believed, and be a partaker of his glory. Raising his voice, he said, 'O, Saviour, come! O, Lord Jesus, take me home to thee! I want to be with Jesus!--You go to Africa, and I to heaven, but we are united in Christ.'
13. "He afterwards said, 'O, Lord! look with thy compassion on a poor negro lying here! O, Lord, hear the prayer of a dying negro, and convert my countrymen! Send true preachers to them--take me to heaven, Lord Jesus.' All present were moved to tears. About two o'clock, on the morning of his death, he asked for some refreshment: when he had ate and drank, he said cheerfully, 'This is the last time--I want no more--I shall go to my Saviour in heaven.'
14. "He prayed fervently for himself, for his relatives, for his countrymen, and for all his friends and benefactors. About nine, he said to his little companion
'Maxwell, pray for Simeon, that the Lord give-him patience.' And about ten, on the 29th of August, he departed, after an illness of six weeks; during which he manifested the advantage of a true and sincere belief in the doctrines of Christianity, and their support under his bodily suffering."
1. SHE was born in Charles City County, Virginia, of free parents, who gave her some school learning. I shall pass over the incidents of her early years, and begin my account from the time of my acquaintance with her, which takes its date from her second marriage, at which time she removed to this neighbourhood.
2. Her unassuming manners, gained her the esteem of her neighbours of all classes. Her conduct, as a wife, struggling with many difficulties, was marked with prudence. And if we view her in the character of mother and stepmother, we see none of the distinctions which too frequently disturb the harmony of mixed families of children.
3. Of her it may not be said, as of some professors formerly, who had a name to live while they were dead,--Revelations iii. 1--for she belonged to no religious society. But the solidity of her countenance, both in and out of meetings, joined to a grave deportment, bore testimony, that she was not unacquainted with that spiritual worship, of which our blessed Lord spoke, when addressing himself to the woman of Samaria. John iv. 23.
4. As before observed, she was not in membership, yet in principle and practice, she was a Friend. She was for many years diligent in the attendance of our meetings. And what is worthy of remark, she not only kept to plainness of dress and address herself,
but brought up her children in the constant use of both.
5. In the early part of the illness, which proved to be her last, she became impressed with a belief that she should not recover. She was not, however, considered dangerously ill, until about ten days before her death; about which time she sent for me.
6. I found her very weak in body, but strong in mind. She looked at me very expressively, and said, "I wanted to talk with thee, but I fear it is too late." After lying quiet a little while, she began with expressions of concern about her children. My husband being present, with a view to abate the anxiety of her feelings on their account, told her they would be provided for. She said, "then I believe I have not much more to do. I have looked all over, (meaning, I supposed, her past conduct,) and I do not find that there is any thing in my way. Does thee think my ways have been such as to entitle me to a place of rest?" I informed her I knew of nothing that I thought was in her way. She said, "I have tried to serve the Lord from my early years."
7. Here a solemn pause ensued, as if she was in deep meditation. Watching her countenance, I observed it was presently animated with such an evidence of joy as I had rarely witnessed--when she said, "Come, Lord!--why should I wish to tarry?"--repeating the words of our Saviour, "Come unto me all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." Mat. xi. 28.
8. At intervals, as her strength would admit, she addressed her husband, and the rest of the family individually, in a feeling and sensible manner, and with matter well suited to their several states. After which she was engaged in vocal supplication, with a melody of voice, and in language which we could scarcely have supposed was her own.
9. Her pulse, about this time, was hardly perceptible, and every appearance indicated a speedy dissolution. Whilst these apprehensions prevailed, she said,
"I see how the end will be. I have yet much to suffer; and desire I may be favoured with patience."
10. This view of her situation, and of her solemn close, was remarkably realized; for she lived about eight days longer: much of which time was passed in a state of delirium. If she had any lucid intervals, they were occupied chiefly in thanksgiving and praise.
11. At one time, when I was not present, she desired a friend to tell me, if she should not see me any more, that the work was done; and well done. I presently called to see her, when she told me the same--adding, "We are all sisters in Christ." She further said, "I wish thee to keep the faith, and maintain the fight--that thou mayest come where I am going."
12. In closing this short account, which I have felt a willingness to preserve, for the encouragement, more particularly, of her own colour, I am led to adopt the language of the Apostle Peter: "Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons: but in every nation, he that feareth him and worketh righteousness, is accepted with him." Acts x. 24, 25.
13. She departed this life on the 25th of the third Month, 1824, aged 39 years; and her body was decently interred in Friends' burying ground at Smith-field, Ohio, the day following her decease.
1. In the spring of 1817, Rebecca Jackson, a girl of colour, about eight years old, in the service of I. H., Mount-Holly, New-Jersey, one morning very early, reaching for something on the mantle-piece, her clothes caught fire, and she was dreadfully burned. Her shrieks immediately alarmed and collected all the family, and they found the skin from the breast to the feet entirely taken off.
2. When her mistress entered the room, the shock was such, that she could not conceal her emotions, which the child perceiving, said, "O! mistress, do not
cry, I shall get well." After getting her to bed, a physician was called, and every suitable application made, though he thought her recovery impossible. Her sufferings were beyond description, or the power of sheding tears; and in proportion thereto, she seemed to be invested with astonishing fortitude. One day she cried out, "Oh! gracious Father, have mercy on a poor child.--Mistress, I will try to bear it as well as I can." This was very evident to those who attended her, and the gratitude she manifested for kindnesses received was lively, frequently expressing a hope that the Lord would please to let her live to pay master and mistress, and indeed all who waited on her, for the trouble she gave them.
3. At another time, conversing with her mistress, she said, "The Lord made the world, and every body in it, and made us all to die, and thee must die, mistress, as well as I." Again, when her mistress entered her room, "O! mistress, every thing that I have done has come before me this day." On her inquiring what things they were, the child replied, "that she had frequently, when she called her, waited, (meaning for her fellow-servants to go) but that she never would again, but run whenever she heard her."
4. Her school-mates often visited her, and brought her little presents. She advised them to be very careful about fire, and not get burnt as she was and would gratefully acknowledge how very kind every one was to her. She lay six weeks in great bodily sufferings; during which time, she was a remarkable instance and example of patience.
5. Her mistress often spoke to her on the subject of death, but she did not appear to resign herself to it until the day before it occurred. She then told her she was willing and ready to go at any time, and spoke with great composure of her burial. In the extremity of her pain she frequently cried out, "Oh! gracious Father, have mercy on a poor child." About eight hours previous to her close, she lay perfectly quiet, and departed as one falling into a sweet sleep, and has no doubt entered into everlasting rest.
From a Richmond (Virginia) Paper--1825.
1. THIS interesting individual, who is now a Missionary at Monrovia, in Africa, was born a slave in Charles City County, about thirty miles below this city, on the estate of William A. Christian. In 1804, he was sent to this city, and hired out by the year as a common labourer at the Shockoe warehouse. At this time, and for two or three years after, he was excessively profane, and much addicted to intoxication. But God, who is rich in mercy, was pleased to awaken him to a sense of his lost estate, and about the year 1807, he was baptized.
2. Hearing a sermon about this time, founded on our Lord's interview with Nicodemus, awakened in him so strong a desire to be able to read, that he obtained a Testament, and commenced learning his letters, by trying to read that chapter. He was occasionally instructed by young gentlemen at the warehouse, though he never attended a regular school. In a little time he was able to read, and write so as to make dray tickets, and superintend the shipping of tobacco. In this business, and in overseeing the labour of the other hands in the warehouse, he was particularly useful; so much so, that he received $800 salary in 1820, the last year he remained there; and could have received a larger sum, if he would have continued.
3. About the year 1813 his wife died, and shortly after, he bought himself and two little children for $850.* * The manner in which he obtained this sum of money to purchase himself and children, reflects much credit on his character. It will be seen from the salary he received after he was free and which he relinquished for the sake of doing good in Africa, that his services at the warehouse were highly estimated; but of their real value, no one except a dealer in tobacco can form an idea. Notwithstanding the hundreds of hogsheads that were committed to his charge, he could produce any one the instant it was called for; and the shipments were made with a promptness, and correctness, such as no person, white or black, has equalled in the same situation. For this correctness and fidelity, he was highly esteemed, and frequently rewarded by the merchant with a five dollar note. He was allowed also to sell for his benefit, many small parcels of waste tobacco. It was by saving the little sums obtained in this way, with the aid of a subscription by the merchants to whose interests he had been attentive, that he procured this 850 dollars, which he paid for the freedom of himself and children. When the the colonists were fitted out for Africa, he defrayed a considerable part of his own expense: and he still owns a house and lot near this city, which he is desirous of selling.
He married again, and lost his second wife
* The manner in which he obtained this sum of money to purchase himself and children, reflects much credit on his character. It will be seen from the salary he received after he was free and which he relinquished for the sake of doing good in Africa, that his services at the warehouse were highly estimated; but of their real value, no one except a dealer in tobacco can form an idea. Notwithstanding the hundreds of hogsheads that were committed to his charge, he could produce any one the instant it was called for; and the shipments were made with a promptness, and correctness, such as no person, white or black, has equalled in the same situation. For this correctness and fidelity, he was highly esteemed, and frequently rewarded by the merchant with a five dollar note. He was allowed also to sell for his benefit, many small parcels of waste tobacco. It was by saving the little sums obtained in this way, with the aid of a subscription by the merchants to whose interests he had been attentive, that he procured this 850 dollars, which he paid for the freedom of himself and children. When the the colonists were fitted out for Africa, he defrayed a considerable part of his own expense: and he still owns a house and lot near this city, which he is desirous of selling.
shortly after they arrived in Africa, at Foura Bay, on the Sierra Leone. Of her triumphant death he gives a most affecting account in his journal of that date. He has since lost a third wife, the daughter of Richmond Sampson, from Petersburgh, at Cape Mesurado. Soon after he made a profession of religion, he commenced holding meetings, and exhorting among the coloured people; and, though he had scarcely any knowledge of books, and but little acquaintance with mankind, he would frequently exhibit a boldness of thought, and a strength of native intellect, which no acquirement could ever have given him.
4. At the close of his farewell sermon in the First Baptist meeting house in this city, before his departure for Africa, he remarked in substance as follows: "I am about to leave you; and expect to see your faces no more. I long to preach to the poor African the way of life and salvation. I don't know what may befall me, or whether I may find a grave in the ocean, or among the savage men, or more savage wild beasts on the coast of Africa; nor am I anxious what may become of me. I feel it my duty to go; and I very much fear, that many of those who preach the Gospel in this country, will blush when the Saviour calls them to give an account of their labours in his cause, and tells them, "I commanded you to go into all the world, and preach the Gospel to every creature," (and with the most forcible emphasis he exclaimed,) "the Saviour may ask--Where have you been? What have you been doing? Have you endeavoured to the utmost of your ability to fulfil the commands I gave you--or have you
sought your own gratification and your own ease, regardless of my commands."
5. Lott Carey is now over forty years of age. He is possessed of a constitution peculiarly fitted for toil and exposure, and has felt the effects of the climate perhaps less than any other individual on the Cape He has always shown that sort of inflexible integrity and correctness of deportment, towards all with whom he may be concerned, which necessarily command their respect; but he will probably never be able to divest himself of a kind of suspicious reserve toward white people; especially his superiors--which universally attaches itself to those reared in slavery.
6. The interests of the colony, and the cause of his countrymen, both in Africa and in this country, lie near his heart. For them he is willing to toil, and to make almost any sacrifice; and he has frequently declared that no possessions in this country could induce him to return.
7. He has been Health Officer and General Inspector, since their settlement at Monrovia; but has refused to accept any other civil office. During the sickly season of the year, he has usually been wholly taken up in attending on the sick, and for more than a year past, they have had no other physician among them The little medical information he obtained from Dr. Ayres and others on the coast, together with several years' experience, have enabled him successfully to contend with the peculiar fevers of the climate.
8. Under date of March 12th, 1824, shortly after the arrival of the Cyrus with 105 emigrants, he writes "The fever began about the 24th ult., and the 28th we had 38 cases; and by the 2d inst. we had 66 under the operation of medicine: and at present, I have about 100 cases of fever to contend with: but we have been very much favoured, for they appear all to be on the recovery, and we have lost none saving three children. I have very little time to write to you, myself being the only man that will venture to act in the capacity of a physician."
1. "Can the Ethiopian change his skin, or the Leopard his spots?"--No; the laws of Providence are fixed. Although God has made man of various colours, and scattered them over the habitable globe, yet all are alike the objects of his care, and to them has he manifested through all generations the greatness of his power, the wisdom of his ways, and the tenderness of his love.
2. Many instances of his peculiar favour to the faithful and obedient, are recorded in the Bible for our encouragement. In the time of Jeremiah the prophet, when the king of Babylon had carried away many of the Jews into captivity, but had left a number at Jerusalem, to have charge of the city, and had placed Zedekiah as king over them, they rebelled against the Babylonians, and would not submit to their government, though they were permitted the free use of their own law. For this rebellious and obstinate disposition, they were frequently reproved of the Lord by the mouth of the prophet Jeremiah; but they would not listen to his counsel, and hardening their hearts, even to cruelty, they cast the prophet into a deep pit, where there was much mire and filth, so that he was nigh unto death.
3. At this time, there was in the king's house a pious and noted Ethiopian, (an African) whose name was
Ebedmeleck. He was much affected with the cruelty of king Zedekiah and his princes towards Jeremiah, and he took the liberty of stating to the king the sufferings of Jeremiah, and the probability that if he remained there much longer, he would die of hunger and suffocation. This statement so wrought on the feelings of the king, that he gave Ebedmeleck permission to go and raise him out of his dungeon. So taking with him a sufficient number of men, he let down cords to Jeremiah, and directing him-to place them properly under his arms, they drew him out, and he remained in the court of the prison.
4. While Jeremiah was in this latter place of confinement, the word of the Lord to him was: "Speak to Ebedmeleck, saying, thus saith the Lord of hosts, the God of Israel, behold, I will bring my words upon this city for evil and not for good, and they shall be accomplished in that day before thee. But I will deliver thee in that day, and thou shalt not be given into the hand of the men of whom thou art afraid. For I will surely deliver thee, and thou shalt not fall by the sword, but thy life shall be for a prey unto thee: because thou hast put thy trust in me, saith the Lord."
5. Thus we see, that long before the declaration was made by Christ to his Apostles, the law by which mankind were governed, was as it still remains to be--"Blessed are the merciful, for they shall obtain mercy"--and, "With what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again."
6. In a short time after this message was delivered by Jeremiah to Ebedmeleck, the king of Babylon again sent his army against Jerusalem, broke down its walls, made captives of many of the inhabitants, among whom were Zedekiah, with his sons and his princes. The sons and princes were put to death, but after putting out the eyes of Zedekiah, and binding him with chains, they carried him with many of the Jews to Babylon, and put him in prison, where he remained until his death.
7. But while the king of Babylon was thus incensed
against Zedekiah for his rebellion, and chastising him for his obstinacy, he remembered Jeremiah, and gave his principal officer a particular charge respecting him, saying, "Take him and look well to him, and do him no harm: but do unto him even as he shall say unto thee." So Jeremiah was taken out of the court of the prison, and committed to the care of Gedeliah, that he should carry him home, and take care of him: and he dwelt among the people.
8. Thus was the promise of the Lord fulfilled. For in the day that he called him to be a prophet, and put his word in his mouth, he declared that though they should rise up and fight against him, they should not prevail--"For I am with thee saith the Lord to deliver thee."
9. And although we have no further account of Ebedmeleck, yet we have every reason to believe that the promise to him was also fulfilled; as it was made by Him whose promises are sure, and whose word faileth not.
[Translated from the French]
1. WARNER MIFFLIN, for his candour, affability, and knowledge, was ranked among those who are an honour to their country and their age. He had received from his father thirty seven negroes, old and young. The day that he had fixed upon for their emancipation being come, he called them one after another into his chamber, and this was the conversation that passed with one of them:--
2. "Well, my friend James, how old art thou?" "I am twenty-nine and a half years old, master." "Thou should'st have been free, as thy white brethren are at twenty-one. Religion and humanity enjoin me
this day to give thee thy liberty, and justice requires me to pay thee for eight years and a half service, at the rate of twenty-one pounds five shillings per annum, including in it thy food and raiment, making altogether a sum of ninety-five pounds twelve shillings and six pence owing to thee; but as thou art young and healthy, thou hadst better work for thy living: my intention is to give thee a bond for it, bearing interest at the rate of seven per cent.
3. "Thou hast now no master but God and the laws--go into the next room, thou wilt find there thy late mistress and my nephew; they are engaged in writing thy manumission. May God bless thee, James! Be wise and industrious; in all thy trials, thou wilt find a friend in thy old master."
4. James, surprised at a scene so new and affecting, shed many tears: astonishment, gratitude, and a variety of feelings, shook his frame. He shed a flood of tears, and could scarcely articulate these words: "Ah! my master, why do you give me my liberty? I have always had what I wanted: we have worked together in the fields, and I have worked as much for myself as for you. I have eaten of the same food, and been clothed like you--and we have gone together on foot to meeting: we have the Sabbath to ourselves: we don't lack any thing. When we are sick, our good and tender mistress comes to our bed-side, always saying something consolatory to us.
5. "Ah! my dear master, when I am free, where shall I go? and when I am sick?"--"Thou shalt be as the whites; thou shalt hire with those who will give thee generous wages: in a few years, thou shalt purchase a piece of land, marry a wife, wise and industrious as thyself, and rear up children, as I have reared thee, in the fear of the Lord and love of labour. After having lived free and happy, thou shalt die in peace. Thou must accept liberty, James, it is a great while since it was due to thee. Would to God, the Father of all men, that the whites had never thought of trading in thy African brethren: may He inspire all men with
the desire of following our example. We, who regard Liberty as the first of our blessings, why should we refuse it to those who live amongst us?"
6. "Ah! my master, you are so good is the reason; I wish not to leave you--I have never been a slave. You have never spoken to me but as you speak to white men: I have lacked nothing, either in sickness or in health: I have never worked more than your neighbours, who have worked for themselves: I have been richer than many whites, to some of whom I have lent money: and my good and tender mistress never commands us to do any thing, but makes us do every thing by only saying, 'Please to do it.' How shall I leave you? Give me by the year what you will, in the name of a freeman or a slave, it is of little consequence to me--I shall never be happy but with you--I will never leave you."
7. "Well, James, I consent to what thou desirest: after thy manumission shall have passed through the necessary forms. I will hire thee by the year, but take at least one week of relaxation, it is a great epoch of thy life, celebrate it with joy, and rest by doing whatsoever thou wilt."
8. "No master! it is seed time--I will take my pleasure another time, one day only shall be a holiday in my family--then since you whill have it so, I will accept my liberty, and my first action as a free man, is to take your hand, my master! press it between mine and lay it on my heart, where the attachment and gratitude of James will not cease, until that ceases to beat; and until that moment, be assured, that no labourer in the county of Kent, will be more industrious than he who henceforth shall be called FAITHFUL JAMES."*
* This account, with some additional particulars, may be found in the "Recueil Choisi," under the head of "Le Genereux Quaker."
1. EZEKIEL COSTON, aged upwards of eightythree years, related to Samuel Canby, of Wilmington,
Delaware State, in 2d month, 1825, the following circumstances of his freedom from his master, the late Warner Mifflin, with other incidents of his life: and it may be observed, that he has always supported an unblemished character:--
2. That he was born a slave in the family of Daniel Mifflin, of Accomack County, Virginia, with whom he lived until about twenty years of age; about which period, Warner Mifflin, (son of Daniel,) married a daughter of Kensey John's, of West River, Maryland, and settled near Camden, in the State of Delaware. Ezekiel, and five other slaves, were given him by his father; there were also a number of slaves belonging to his wife brought into the family. He lived with Warner Mifflin about eighteen months, when he put him on a plantation of his to work it, about six miles from his residence, where he continued about four years a slave.
3. At this period, Ezekiel was informed, by his master that he had concluded to set his slaves free: and very soon after, his master came to his residence, and calling him from the field, where he was ploughing, they sat down together, when he told Ezekiel his mind had long been uneasy with holding slaves, and that he must let him go.
4. Ezekiel was so well satisfied with his present situation, that he told his master he could not leave him. Their conversation on the subject produced such feelings of tenderness, that they both wept much. Finally, as an inducement to comply, his master told him he might remain on the farm; and they entered into a mutual engagement, which was carried into effect, and Ezekiel continued to live on the farm fourteen years; when his master gave him a piece of land, upon which he built a house, where he remained until he came into the neighbourhood of Wilmington, where, and in that town, he has resided until the present time.
5. After relating the foregoing narrative, be was inquired of respecting the account entitled "The Good Master and his Faithful slave"--a circumstance which
took place about the time of his being liberated, and in the same family--to which he bore the following testimony, shedding many tears while the reader was pursuing the theme, saying, "It is just so; poor Jem and I lived together with master. and worked together in harmony; how well I remember when Jem told me that Master Mifflin had done the same by him as he had for me: it is all true--mistress brought a number of slaves with her into the family, after master married her--one of them was my wife--all the rest of us, making, I suppose about thirty, were given by old master to master Warner, who is now an angel in Heaven. Oh! how it comforts me to believe; that after suffering a few more pains, I shall live with him forever in communion sweet. We were brought up children together, slept together, and eat at the same table, and never quarreled."
6. The dear old man seems indeed like one waiting with Christian resignation for an entrance into the Heavenly Kingdom. I have no doubt of the correctness of his testimony. He appears to have as perfect a recollection of the days of his childhood, as though they had but just passed.
1. A slave belonging to his grandmother, was carried off when a boy by the British, in the time of the revolutionary war, to Nova Scotia, where he lived several years; but he could not forget his old home and friends, and returned to his mistress, giving himself up as a slave. But she not having employment for him, talked of selling him. He told her if she did, he was determined to destroy himself, for that it was nothing but his attachment to the family that brought him back. He was then suffered to work out, paying a certain part of his wages to his owner.
2. The family soon after became embarrassed; and one of the grandsons was sent to the West Indies to a relation. Just as he was embarking, the faithful Black put into his hand a purse, containing all his little earnings, and insisted upon his young master's taking it, saying he had no use for the money himself, and his master might want it in a strange country, away from his friends. The black still living in Charleston, was suffered to work for himself; and has had repeated offers of his liberty, but prefers living in the family that brought him up.
1. AN old black man, who resided in Philadelphia, by the name of Hector--poor, but honest and respectable, lived with his wife on the scanty earnings of their own hands, in a very small cottage. One evening at a late hour, a woman of their own colour, with an infant, stopped at their dwelling and asked for a night's lodging, to which his wife answered, "We can't lodge you, we got but one bed." "Oh," said the old man, seeing her a stranger, and in difficulty, "let her tag, (stay) she sleep in de bed with you, I go make a bed on de floor--must not turn her out a doors."
2. The woman accordingly stayed: and in the night, Hector was awaked by the cries of the child; when, rising to see what the cause was, he found the mother was gone; on which he roused his wife, saying, "Well, Suky, you see de woman has gone off and left de child for you." "Oh!" said his wife, "what shall we do now? she never come again." "Well," returned Hector, "then you must take care of him: who knows God Almighty send him here for something--may be to take care of us in our old age--must not turn him out of doors."
3. So they fed and nourished it with milk from the market, the old man going regularly to procure it.
No one appearing, the child became their adopted. When he had attained the age of eight or nine years, proving an active lad, they put him to a chimney-sweeper, as the most likely way for him to become early useful, and he soon contributed a little to his guardians' subsistence.
4. They at length grew quite infirm, and the wife died. After which the neighbours thinking it too much for the lad to have the whole care of the old man, prevailed on him to go to the Bettering House. When here, the boy did not forsake, but frequently visited him, and continued to add to his support until he died; a few days after which the lad died also, having grown up beloved and respected.
1. THE anecdote of Louis Desrouleaux, a negro pastry-cook, of Nantes, is little known. After he left Nantes, he lived at the Cape, where he had been a slave of Pinsum, of Bayonne, a captain in the slave trade, who came with great riches to France, where he lost it all, and returned to St. Domingo. Those who when he was rich, called themselves his friends, now took very little notice of him.
2. Louis, who had acquired a fortune by his industry and prudence, supplied their place. He learned the situation of his old master, hastened to find him, gave him lodging and nourishment, and also proposed that he should live in France, where his feelings would not be mortified by the sight of ungrateful men. "But I cannot find a subsistence in France," said Pinsum. "Will an annual revenue of fifteen thousand francs be sufficient?" At this proposal, Pinsum wept for joy. The contract was signed, and the pension regularly paid, until the death of Louis Desrouleaux, which happened in 1774.
1. Some years since, a gentleman who had been possessed of considerable property, from various causes became embarrassed in his circumstances, and was arrested by his creditors, and confined in the king's bench, from whence there was no probability of his being liberated, unless some law proceedings (upon his succeeding in which the recovery of great part of his property depended) were decided in his favour.
2. Thus situated, he called a negro, who had for many years served him with the greatest faithfulness, and said, "Robert, you have lived with me many years, but I am now unable to maintain you any longer; you must leave me, and endeavour to find another master."
3. The poor negro, well remembering his master's kindness, replied, "No, Massa, me no leave you, you maintain me many years, me now try what I can do for you." Robert then went and procured employment as a day-labourer, and regularly brought his earnings to his master; on which, although small, they managed to subsist for some time, until the law-suit was decided in the master's favour, and he thereby regained possession of a very considerable property.
4. Mindful of his faithful negro, one of his first acts was to settle an annuity upon him for the remainder of his life, sufficient to secure to the poor fellow the enjoyment of those comforts he had so well deserved.
5. This little anecdote may afford instruction both to the nominal and professing Christian: let the former inquire, Should I have acted thus, if in a similar situation?
1. In the dreadful earthquake which made such ravages in the Island of St. Domingo, in the year 1770, a negress of Port-au-Prince, found herself alone in the
house of her master and mistress, with their youngest child, whom she nursed. The house shook to its foundation. Every one had taken flight; she alone could not escape, without leaving her infant charge in danger.
2. She flew to the chamber, where it lay in the most profound sleep. At that moment the walls of the house fell in; anxious only for the safety of her foster child, she threw herself over it, and serving as sort of arch, saved it from destruction. The child was indeed saved; but the unfortunate negress died soon after, the victim of her fidelity.Ladies' Monthly Museum.
1. During the late war, a gentleman and his lady were going from the East Indies to England. His wife unfortunately died on the passage, and left two infants, the charge of which fell to a negro boy about seventeen years of age.
2. The gentleman, for some reason which I do not recollect, went on board the commodore's vessel, with which they sailed. There came on a violent storm, and the vessel which the children were on board, was on the point of being lost. They despatched a boat from the commodore's vessel, to save as many as they could; they had almost filled the boat, and there was room enough for the infants, or the negro boy. What did he do? He did not hesitate a moment, but put the children in the boat, and said, "Tell my master that Coffin has done his duty," and that instant he was received into the bosom of the ocean, never more to return.
3. The queen requested the celebrated poetess, Hannah More, to write an epic poem on it, but she wisely declined it, saying, that no art could embellish so noble a sentiment.
1. JOB BEN SOLOMON, an African, of an uncommonly retentive memory, was son of the Mahometan king of Bunda, on the Gambia. He was taken in 1730, brought to America, and sold in Maryland. By a train of extraordinary adventures he was at length taken to England, where his dignified and pleasing manners, with his superior talents, gained him many friends, and among others Hawstone, baronet, for whom he translated several Arabic manuscripts.
2. After being received and treated with respect at the court of St. James, the African company reconducted him to Bunda. One of his uncles who resides there, embracing him said, "During sixty years, thou art the first slave that I have seen return from the American Isles." He wrote many letters to his friends in Europe and America, which were translated and perused with interest. At his father's death, he became his successor, and was much beloved by his subjects.
1. ANTHONY WILLIAM AMO, born in Guinea, was brought to Europe when very young, and the princess of Brunswick, Wolfenbuttle, took charge of his education. He pursued his studies at Halle in Saxony, and at Wittemberg, and so distinguished himself by his talents and good conduct, that the rector and council of the university of the last mentioned town, gave a public testimony of the same in a letter of congratulation.
2. Amo, skilled in the knowledge of the Latin and Greek languages, delivered with success, private lectures on philosophy, which are highly praised in the same letter. In an abstract published by the Dean of the Philosophical Faculty, it is said of this learned negro, that having examined the systems of ancients and moderns, he selected and taught all that was best of them.
3. He became a Doctor, and in 1744 published dissertations on some subjects which obtain the approbation of the University of Wittemberg, and the president, when speaking of one of them, says, "it underwent no change, because it was well executed, and indicates a mind exercised in reflection." But what became of him afterwards, is not recorded in the work from which these extracts are taken.
1. BERONICIUS, a chimney-sweeper in Holland, united that occupation, which is considered the most unfavourable to mental improvement, with that of a poetic genius, and wrote many pieces of Latin verse. And his poems in two books, entitled, Georgas, or the Battle between the Peasants and the Great, has been translated and reprinted at Middlebury, in 1766.
1. JAMES DERHAM, originally a slave in Philadelphia, was sold by his master to a physician, who employed him in his shop as assistant in the preparation of drugs. During the war between America and England, he was sold to a surgeon, and by that surgeon to Doctor Robert Dove, of New-Orleans. He learned the English, French, and Spanish languages, so as to speak them with ease.
2. He was received a member of the English church, and in the year 1788, when he was about twenty-one years of age, he became one of the most distinguished physicians at New-Orleans. "I conversed with him on medicine," says Dr. Rush, "and found him very learned. I thought I could give him information concerning the treatment of diseases, but I learned more from him than he could expect from me."
3. The Pennsylvania Society established in favour of the people of colour, thought it their duty in 1789 to publish these facts, which are also related by Dickson,
page 184. In the Domestic Medicine of Buchan, and in a work of Duplaint, we find an account of a cure for the bite of a rattlesnake. I know not whether Derham was the discoverer, but it is a well known fact, that for this important discovery we are indebted to one of his colour, who received his freedom from the general assembly of Carolina, who also gave him an annuity of a hundred pounds sterling.
[From the New-York Observer.]
1. SOME time ago you printed an account, which I sent you, of two little sweeps. I now send you an anecdote about another of these poor boys. It is written down nearly as it was communicated to me.
2. Jack had been several years apprenticed to his master, and was almost twelve years old, but could not read. No person had ever taken any pains to teach him, and his master, though kind, was an ignorant man, and there was not a book in his house.
3. One day, as Jack was going along the street, he saw several school boys, about his own age, playing at marbles, and as he was very fond of the game, he stopped to look at them. His attention was soon caught by something new to him, this was their books, ranged in a line by the side of a wall. He ventured to take hold of one, and was turning over the leaves, when the boy to whom it belonged came up, and angrily asked him what he was about.
4. Jack took some marbles out of his pocket, and offered to given them to the boy if he would let him look at the book till the game was over. The owner consented, and Jack turned over the leaves, but of course could not make out its contents. The game being ended, the boys dispersed; Jack returned the book, and asked the boy many questions about reading, and, for another marble, persuaded him to read some of his lessons before they parted.
5. The next day Jack felt desirous to learn to read also, and not knowing any other plan, he watched for the boy's return from school, and after some talk about books, asked him to teach him to read, and offered him a marble for every letter he taught him. The boy consented, and Jack set about trying to win marbles enough to pay this little master, and being a good shot, he succeeded, though not without some pains.* * The Compiler approves of the motive, but not the practice, of playing of marbles.
His teacher used to meet him every day for some time, and the little sweep soon began to spell words of one syllable.
* The Compiler approves of the motive, but not the practice, of playing of marbles.
6. One day Jack came as before to the place where they used to meet, but did not find his teacher; he searched for him, and finding him busy at marbles, he waited till the game should be over. After a short time, to his great sorrow, the boy called out,--"Sutty boy, I can't teach you any more, father and mother have both scolded me because you have dirtied my book with your black hands."
7. Poor Jack had not expected this, but was unwilling to be disappointed, and being very different from some idle children who are glad of any excuse to escape their lessons, he offered to pay two marbles for every lesson, and to wash his hands carefully every day. This was in vain; his teacher was either tired of the task, or afraid of being blamed about his book. All now seemed to be at an end, when Jack recollected that he had seen letters on the tombstones in the church-yard, and as these could not be hurt by his black fingers, he mentioned this plan to the boys, and offered to go on paying any one who would teach him to read the words on the stones.
8. The boys were struck with his anxiety to learn, and agreed that they would take it by turns to teach him, and immediately began. After continuing this method for some days, one of them offered to take him to a Sunday School. Jack readily agreed. The
Superintendent was pleased with his anxiety to learn, and took pains to procure him instruction on week days also. He applied diligently, and soon was able to read and write; and what was far better, from the instructions he received, he was brought to love the Bible and the truths it contained.
9. If any of your little readers feel tired of their lessons. I hope they will think of the "Sweep and the Tombstones;" and I hope, also, that like him they will learn the best wisdom, "For the soul to be without knowledge is not good;" but it is of very little use to be able to read and write, if they remain ignorant of Christ, or only repeat texts and chapters by rote. Then "incline thine ear unto wisdom, and apply thine heart to understanding;--if thou seekest for her as for hid treasures, then shalt thou understand the fear of the Lord, and find the knowledge of God." Prov. ii. 2,4,5.
1. BENJAMIN BANNAKER, a negro of Maryland, went to Philadelphia, and without any other encouragement than his desire for acquiring knowledge, without books, except the works of Ferguson, and the Table of Tobias Mayer, he applied himself to astronomy, and published almanacs for the years 1794 and 1795 at Philadelphia; in which were calculated and exhibited the different aspects of the planets, a table of the motions of the sun and moon, their risings and settings, and the courses of the bodies of the planetary system. Bannaker has received his freedom.
1. In the most flourishing period of the reign of Louis XIV., two negro youths, the sons of a prince, being brought to the court of France, the king appointed
a Jesuit to instruct them in letters and in the Christian religion; and gave to each of them a commission in his guards.--The elder who was remarkable for candour and ingenuity, made great improvements, more particularly in the doctrines of religion.
2. A brutal officer, upon some dispute, insulted him with a blow. The gallant youth never so much as offered to resent it. A person who was his friend took an opportunity to talk with him that evening alone upon his behaviour, which he told him was too tame, especially in a soldier. "Is there then," said the young African, "one revelation for soldiers, and another for merchants and gownsmen? The good father to whom I owe all my knowledge, has earnestly inculcated in me forgiveness of injuries; assuring me that a Christian was by no means to retaliate abuses of any kind."
3. "The good father," replied his friend, "may fit you for a monastery, by his lessons, but never for the army and the rules of a court. In a word," continued he, "if you do not call the colonel to an account, you will be branded with the infamy of cowardice, and have your commission taken from you." "I would fain," said the young man, "act consistently in every thing; but since you press me with that regard to my honour, which you have always shewn, I will wipe off so foul a stain; though I must own I gloried in it before."
4. Immediately upon this, he desired his friend to go from him and appoint the aggressor to meet him early in the morning. Accordingly they met and fought, and the brave African youth disarmed his adversary, and forced him to ask his pardon publicly. This done, the next day he threw up his commission, and desired the king's leave to return to his father.
5. At parting he embraced his brother and his friends, with tears in his eyes, saying, "he did not imagine the Christians had been such an unaccountable people; and that he could not apprehend their faith was of any use to them, if it did not influence their practice. In my country, we think it no dishonour to act according to the principles of our religion."
[From the Literary and Evangelical Magazine, 1824.]
1. Late in the last autumn, it was my privilege, (says the author,) to spend a few hours in the hospitable mansion of the Rev. S. B. W. of F. I arrived at his house very early in the morning; just before the family assembled to perform their customary devotions. On the signal being given, the children and domestics came into the room where we were sitting.
2. Among the latter, there was a very aged black man, whom every one called Uncle Harry. As soon as he entered, I observed that Mr. W. and his lady treated him with marked attention, and kindness. The morning was sharp and frosty, and Uncle Harry had a chair in the corner, close to the fire.
3. The portion of Scripture selected for the service, was the second chapter of Luke. I observed that the attention of Harry was deeply fixed; and he soon began to manifest strong emotions. The old man's eye kindled as the reader went on, and when he came to the tenth verse, Harry appeared as though his heart was tuned to the angelic song, and he could hardly help uttering a shout of triumph.
4. There was not, however, the smallest ostentation of feeling, nor endeavour to attract attention. He only in a gentle manner, turned his face upwards, strongly clasping his hands as they lay in his lap, and expressed by his countenance the joy of his heart. By this time he had interested me so highly, that I could not keep my eyes from him.
5. I watched the varying expressions of his countenance, and saw that every word seemed to strike on his heart, and produce a corresponding emotion. I thought I would give the world, if I could read the Bible, just as Harry heard it. While I was thinking, and looking on with intense interest, the reader came to the passage where old Simeon saw the infant Saviour, and took
him in his arms, blessed God, and said, "Lord, now lettest thou thy servant depart in peace, for mine eye have seen thy salvation."
6. Harry's emotion had become stronger and stronger, until the words just quoted had been read, when he was completely overpowered. Suddenly turning of his seat, to hide as much as possible his feelings, he bent forward, and burst into a flood of tears; but they were tears of joy. He anticipated his speedy peaceful departure, and his final rest. This state of feeling continued during the remainder of the service, and when we rose from our knees, Uncle Harry's face seemed literally to have been bathed in tears.
7. As soon as we had risen, the old man came towards me with a countenance beaming with joy; "This, said Mr. W. addressing me, is Uncle Harry." He reached out his hand, and said, "O! why did my God bring me here to-day, to hear what I have heard, and see this salvation?" I asked, are you ready to depart, Uncle Harry, as good old Simeon was, of whom we read in the chapter? I shall never forget his look of humble, joyful submission, when he replied, "Just when it shall please my blessed Lord and Master." You hope to go to heaven? "Through divine mercy I do." What is the foundation of that hope? "The righteousness of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ."
8. On perceiving that I wished to converse with the old man, Mr. W. said, with a kindness which showed that he recognized Harry as a Christian brother, and respected his age, "Come, take your seat again, Uncle Harry, and sit up near the fire." He accepted the invitation, and I entered into conversation, which afforded me higher pleasure than I ever enjoyed in the circles of fashion, beauty, wit, or learning,--I here send you some of the most interesting particulars.
9. How old are you Uncle Harry? "Why, as nigh as I can tell, I am eighty-nine or there abouts." Where were you born? "At Port-Tobacco, in Maryland." And who had you to preach the gospel to you there? "Ah! we had no preacher of the gospel there at that
time." Then it was after you left Port-Tobacco, that you embraced religion, was it? "No, Sir, it was while I lived there, and I will tell you how it was: a great many years ago, there was one Doctor Whitefield, that travelled all through this country, preaching the Gospel every where--I dare say you have heard of Doctor Whitefield; he was a most powerful preacher. Well, as I was saying, he went through Maryland; but his place of preaching was so far off, that I did not hear of it until he was gone. But not long afterwards. I met with a man, an acquaintance of mine, who did hear him. He told me about the sermon; and what I heard opened my eyes to see that I was a poor lost sinner; and ever since that time, I have been determined to seek Jesus as my Saviour, and to spend my life in his service."
10. Happy Whitefield! thought I, and greatly honoured of thy Master, who has used thee as his instrument of saving so many souls. But, said I, how old were you then? "Why, as nigh as I can guess, I was somewhere about sixteen or seventeen years old." And have you never repented of this resolution? "No, indeed, master; I have never repented of any thing, but that I have served my blessed Saviour so poorly."
11. But have you not met with many trials and difficulties by the way? "Yes! indeed, master; but out of them all the Lord has delivered me, and having obtained help of God, I continue to this day; blessed be his name: he never will leave me nor forsake me; I have good hope of that."
12. Well, how did you obtain religious instruction where you lived, as you say there was no preachers of the gospel in the neighbourhood? "Why, by the mercy of my God, I learned to read the Bible; and that showed me the way to Jesus. But now I think of it: when the roman Catholics heard that I was concerned about my soul, they sent for me, and they tried hard to get me to join them.
13. "There was a priest at Port-Tobacco, whose name was Mr. O'Neal; he talked to me a great deal. I remember he said to me one day, 'Harry, now you
are concerned about your soul, you must come and join the Catholic church.' What for, said I, Mr. O'Neal 'Because,' said he, 'it is the true church.' Then said I, if the Catholic church will lead me to Jesus, I will join it with all my heart, for that is all I want; and Mr. O'Neal said, 'If you will join the church. I will warrant that you shall go to heaven.' How can you do that, Mr. O'Neal? said I. Then he told me that a great many years ago, our Saviour came into the world, and he chose twelve apostles, and made St. Peter their head; and the pope succeeded St. Peter, and so all that join the pope, belong to the true church.
14. "Then, said I, why, how do you know that, Mr. O'Neal? 'Because,' said he, 'our Saviour told Peter, I give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatsoever you bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven, and whosoever you lose on earth, shall be losed in heaven.' And I said, the Lord knows how it is, Mr. O'Neal; I am a poor ignorant creature, but it always did seem to me, that Peter was nothing but a man like the other apostles; but Mr. O'Neal said, 'No he was the head and chief of the apostles; for our Saviour said again, Thou art Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.'
15. "And I asked him, now, do you think Peter was that rock, Mr. O'Neal? He answered, 'to be sure he was;' and I said again, the Lord knows how it is; but it never did seem so to me. Now, I think it was just so; when Peter said, thou art the Christ the Son of the living God, our Saviour told him, thou art Peter, (while the old man repeated the words, thou art Peter, he pointed his finger at me, and looked me directly in the face, but as soon as he began the following part of the quotation, he brought his hand briskly down to his knee, saying with emphasis, as he looked at himself,) and upon this rock will I build my church, and that rock was Christ; for it is written in another place, Behold, I lay in Zion a chief corner-stone, elect, precious,
and he that believeth on him shall not be confounded; and that corner-stone is Christ.
16. "Then Mr. O'Neal said to me, 'Why, Harry, where did you learn all that?' I said from my Bible. 'Oh!" said he, "you have no business with the Bible, it will confuse and frustrate you.' But I said, it tells me of my Saviour. Then a gentleman who was sitting by, said, 'Oh! you might as well let him alone, Mr. O'Neal, you cannot make any thing of him;' and from that time I never had any desire to join the Roman Catholics."
17. This narrative, of the truth of which, I could not entertain a moment's doubt, showed a promptness of reply, and acquaintance with the Scriptures, which truly surprised me, and I remarked, I suppose, Uncle Harry, you take great pleasure in reading the Bible? "Ah! master, when I could read, it was the pleasure of my life. But I am old now; and my book is so rubbed that the print is dim, and I can scarcely make out to read a word."
18. On this Mr. W--said, "Well, Uncle Harry, you shall have a new Bible. Do you call on Mr.--when you go down town, and he will give you a new one from the Bible Society." Harry bowed, and expressed gratitude for the kindness, but did not manifest as much pleasure as I expected, considering how highly he professed to value the Bible. While I was wondering, and rather sorrowing on the account, I observed the old man to be feeling with an air of embarrassment in his pocket. At length, he pulled out an old tattered case, which appeared to have been long in use and observed, "This new Bible will not be of much use to me, because my spectacles are so bad, that they help one very little in reading"
19. With that he opened his case, and showed a pair of spectacles of the cheapest sort, of which one glass was broken, and the other so scratched, that it was wonderful that he could see through it at all. Mr. W--no sooner observed this, than he said, "Well, Uncle Harry, you must have a new pair--do call at
Mr.--store, and tell him to let you have a pair suited to your age, and I will settle with him about it."
20. On hearing this, Harry's eyes gleamed with joy and he exclaimed, "Thank God! God bless you, master! Now I shall have comfort again in reading the Bible."--And I never saw a happier, or a more grateful countenance.
21. Presently, he said, the wagon would soon call for him, to take him home, and he must go down town, and be getting ready; on which he again thanked his kind friend, and invoked a blessing on him and his family. He then came, and taking me affectionately and respectfully by the hand, said, "I never saw you before, and I never shall see you again in this world, but I love you as a minister of my blessed Lord and Master, and I hope that I shall meet you in the house above. Remember and pray for poor old Harry."
22. I squeezed his hand, and assured him of my affectionate remembrance, and requested that he would pray for me, and for the preachers of the Gospel generally. "Oh!" said he, "may God Almighty bless all the dear ministers of Christ, and enable them to call many poor sinners to the dear Saviour--oh! I do love to hear of souls coming to Christ; and it is my daily prayer--Thy kingdom come, and thy will be done on earth, as it is done in heaven;" with that the old man took leave.
23. I confess that I have often since wished to see him and hold communion with him. There was a spirit of piety about him, and of benevolence, of humble zeal and fervent hope; of meekness and submission which I have rarely seen equalled. At the same time there was a degree of intelligence, and extent of religious knowledge, which in his condition really surprised and delighted me.
24 I saw here one of the triumphs of divine grace. I was made to appreciate the value and the excellency of that religion, which could take a poor slave and so transform him, that he was well nigh fitted to be a companion of saints in light, and of just men made perfect.
And I have often prayed since I saw him, that after the days of my wandering shall be over, all the suffering of my life shall have been endured, I may obtain the rest, and a lot in the inheritance which I have no doubt is prepared for Uncle Harry.
1. SOME year ago an English gentleman had occasion to visit North America, where the following circumstance occurred, which is thus related, in his own words:--
2. "Every day's observation convinces me, that the children of God are made so by his own especial grace; and that all means are equally effectual with him, whenever he is pleased to employ them for conversion.
3. "In one of my excursions, while I was in the State of New-York, I was walking by myself over a considerable plantation, amused with its husbandry, and comparing it with that of my own country, till I came within a little distance of a middle-aged Negro, who was tilling the ground. I felt a strong inclination, unusual with me, to converse with him. After asking him some little questions about his work, which he answered in a sensible manner, I asked him to tell me whether his state of slavery was not disagreeable to him. and whether he would not gladly be at liberty. 'Massah,' said he, looking seriously upon me, 'I have a wife and children; my Massah take care of them, and I have no care to provide any thing; I have a good Massah, who teaches me to read; and I read good book, that makes me happy.' I am glad, replied I, to hear you say so; and pray what is the good book you read? 'The Bible, Massah, God's own book.' Do you understand, friend, as well as read this book? For many can read the words well, who cannot get hold of the true and good sense.
4. "'O, Massah,' said he, 'I read the book much before I understand; but, at last, I felt pain in my heart; I found things in the book that cut me to pieces.' Ah! said I, and what things were they? 'Why, Massah, I found that I had bad heart, Massah, a very bad heart indeed; I felt pain that God would destroy me, because I was wicked, and done nothing as I should do. God was holy and I was very vile and naughty; I could have nothing from him but fire and brimstone in hell.'
5. "In short, he entered into a full account of his convictions of sin, which were indeed as deep and piercing as almost any I had ever heard of; and what Scriptures came to his mind, which he had read, that both probed to the bottom of his sinful heart, and were made the means of light and comfort to his soul. I then inquired of him what ministry or means he made use of, and found that his master was a plain sort of man, who had taught his slaves to read, but who had not conversed with this negro upon the state of his soul.
6. "I asked him likewise, how he got comfort under all this trial? 'O, Massah,' said he, 'it was Christ gave me comfort by his dear word. He bade me come unto him, and he would give me rest, for I was very weary and heavy laden.' And here he repeated a number of the most precious texts in the Bible, showing, by his artless comment upon them, as he went along, what great things God had done in the course of some years for his soul. Being rather more acquainted with doctrinal truths, and the Bible, than he had been, or in his situation could easily be, I had a mind to try how far a simple experience, graciously given without the usual means, could preserve a man from error; and I therefore asked him several questions about the merit of works, the justification of a sinner, the power of grace, and the like; I own I was as much astonished at, as I admired the sweet spirit and simplicity of his answers, with the heavenly wisdom that God had put into the mind of this negro.
7. "His discourse, flowing merely from the richness of grace, with a tenderness and expression far 'beyond
the reach of art,' perfectly charmed me. On the other hand, my entering into all his feelings, together with an account to him, which he had never heard before, that thus and thus the Lord, in his mercy, dealt with all his children, and had dealt with me, drew streams of joyful tears down his black face, and we looked upon each other, and talked with that inexpressible glow of Christian affection, that made me more than ever believe, what I have often too thoughtlessly professed to believe, the communion of saints.
8. "I shall never forget how the poor creature seemed to hang upon my lips, and to eat my very words, when I enlarged upon the love of Christ to poor sinners, the free bounty and tender mercy of God, the frequent and delightful sense he gives of his presence, the faith he bestows in his promises, the victories this faith is enabled to get over trials and temptations, the joy and peace in believing, the hope in life and death, and the glorious expectation of immortality. To have seen his eager, delighted, animated air and manner, would have cheered and armed any Christian's heart, and have been a master-piece for any painter. He had never heard such discourse, nor found the opportunity of hearing it, before. He seemed like a man who had been thrown into a new world, and at length had found company.
9. "Though my conversation lasted, at least, two or three hours, I scarcely ever enjoyed the happy swiftness of time so sweetly in all my life. We knew not how to part. He would accompany me as far as he might; and I felt, on my side, such a delight in the artless, solid, unaffected experience of this pious soul, that I could have been glad to have seen him oftener then, or to see his like at any time now; but my situation rendered it impossible. I therefore took an affectionate leave, with feelings equal to those of the warmest and most ancient friendship; telling him, that neither the colour of his body, nor the condition of his present life, could prevent him from being my dear brother in our dear Saviour; and that though we must
part now, never to see each other again in this world, I had no doubt of our having another joyful meeting in our Father's home, where we should live together, and love one another, throughout a long and happy eternity. 'Amen, Amen, dear Massah; God bless you and poor me too, for ever and ever.'
10. "If I had been an angel from heaven, he could not have received me with more evident delight than he did; nor could I have considered him with a more sympathetic regard, if he had been a long known Christian of the good old sort, grown up into my affections in the course of many years."
1. THE enterprising traveller, Mungo Park, was employed, by the African Association, to explore the interior regions of Africa. In this hazardous undertaking he encountered many dangers and difficulties. His wants were often supplied, and his distresses alleviated, by the kindness and compassion of the negroes. He gives the following lively and interesting account of the hospitable treatment he received from a poor negro woman.
2. "Being arrived at Sego, the capital of the kingdom of Bambarra, situated on the banks of the Niger, I wished to pass over to that part of the town in which the king resides; but from the number of persons eager to obtain a passage, I was under the necessity of waiting two hours. During this time, the people who had crossed the river, carried information to Mansong, the king, that a white man was waiting for a passage, and was coming to see him. He immediately sent over one of his chief men, who informed me, that the king could not possibly see me, until he knew what had brought me into his country, and that I must not presume to cross the river, without the king's permission. He therefore advised me to lodge, for that night,
in a distant village, to which he pointed, and said that, in the morning, he would give me further instruction how to conduct myself. This was very discouraging. However, as there was no remedy, I set off for the village; where I found, to my great mortification, that no person would admit me into his house. From prejudices infused into their minds, I was regarded with astonishment and fear; and was obliged to sit the whole day without victuals, in the shade of a tree.
3. "The night threatened to be very uncomfortable; the wind rose, and there was great appearance of a heavy rain. The wild beasts too were so numerous in the neighbourhood, that I should have been under the necessity of climbing up the tree, and resting among the branches. About sun-set however, as I was preparing to pass the night in this manner, and had turned my horse loose, that he might graze at liberty; a negro woman returning from the labours of the field, stopped to observe me; and perceiving that I was weary and dejected, inquired into my situation. I briefly explained it to her; after which, with looks of great compassion, she took up my saddle and bridle, and told me to follow her. Having conducted me into her hut, she lighted a lamp, spread a mat on the floor, and told me I might remain there for the night. Finding I was very hungry, she went out to procure me something to eat; and returned in a short time with a very fine fish, which, having caused it to be half broiled upon some embers, she gave me for supper. The rites of hospitality being thus performed towards a stranger in distress, my worthy benefactress (pointing to the mat, and telling me I might sleep there without apprehension) called to the female part of her family, who had stood gazing on me all the while in fixed astonishment, to resume their task of spinning cotton; in which they continued to employ themselves great part of the night.
4. "They lightened their labour by songs, one of which was composed extempore: for I was myself the subject of it. It was sung by one of the young women,
the rest joining in a sort of chorus. The air was sweet and plaintive, and the words, literally translated, were these:--"The winds roared and the rain fell. The poor white man, faint and weary, came and sat under our tree. He has no mother to bring him milk, no wife to grind his corn. Chorus. Let us pity the white man; no mother has he to bring him milk; no wife to grind his corn."*
* These simple and affecting sentiments, have been very beautifully versified.
1. The loud wind roar'd, the rain fell fast;
The white man yielded to the blast.
He sat him down beneath the tree,
For weary, sad, and faint was he:
And ah! no wife or mother's care,
For him the milk or corn prepare.
The white man shall our pity share,
Alas! no wife or mother's care,
For him the milk or corn prepare.
2. The storm is o'er, the tempest past,
And mercy's voice has hush'd the blast;
The wind is heard in whispers low,
The white man far away must go;
But ever in his heart will bear,
Remembrance of the negro's care.
Go white man, go; but with thee bear
The negro's wish, the negro's prayer,
Remembrance of the negro's care.
Trifling as these events may appear to the reader, they were to me affecting in the highest degree. I was oppressed by such unexpected kindness; and sleep fled from my eyes. In the morning, I presented to my compassionate landlady two of the four brass buttons which remained on my waistcoat; the only recompense it was in my power to make her.
* These simple and affecting sentiments, have been very beautifully versified.
Duballon gives the following account of a woman of
colour, in Jamaica, in 1802.
1. "Let us visit the old woman that has seen her hundredth year," says one of the company; and we advanced to the door of a little hut, where an old negress of Senegal appeared, so enfeebled that she was bent forward and obliged to lean against the side of her hut, to receive the company assembled at the door; she was also dull of hearing, but her eye was still lively. Every thing around her showed that she was destitute and suffering. She had scarcely rags enough to cover her, and had not fire sufficient to give warmth, at a season when the cold is sensibly felt by the aged, and more particularly by those of her country. We found her broiling a little rice and water for her supper, for she did not receive that regular subsistance from her master, which her great age and former services required. She was besides alone and neglected, her exhausted frame was more indebted to nature than to her master.
2. The reader ought to know that independently of her long service, this woman had formerly nourished, with her milk, two white children, whom she had seen arrive at complete growth, and whom she afterward followed to the tomb; and these were the brothers of one of the masters then present. The old woman perceived him and called him by name; she spoke with an air of kindness truly affecting, and said, "When wilt thou repair the roof of my hut?" It was almost uncovered, and the rain poured freely. He raised his eyes towards it; it was not higher than the hand could reach: "I shall think of it," said he. "Thou wilt think of it! thou always tellest me so, but nothing is ever done.
3. "Hast thou not thy children (two negroes of the work-shop, her grand-children,) who could mend the hut; art thou not their master, and art thou not thyself
my son? Come, said she, taking him by the arm, come into the cabin, and see for thyself these openings: have pity, then, my son, on the old Irrouba, and repair at least that part of the roof which is above my bed, it is all I ask, and the Good Being will bless thee." And what was her bed? Alas! three boards put together, and on which lay a bundle of parasite plant of the country.--"The roof of thy but it almost uncovered; the sleet and the rain beat against thy miserable bed; thy master sees all this, and yet has no compassion for thee, poor Irrouba"--says the visiter.
1. BELINDA, born in a pleasant and fertile part of Africa, was brought from thence to America, when she was about twelve years of age, and sold for a slave. In 1782, she presented a petition to the Legislature of Massachusetts.
2. " Although I have, says she, been servant to a colonel forty years, my labours have not procured me any comfort: I have not yet enjoyed the benefits of creation. With my poor daughter, I feat I shall pass the remainder of my days in slavery and misery. For her and for myself, I beg freedom."
3. The authors of the American Museum have preserved this petition, written without art, but dictated by the eloquence of grief, and therefore more calculated to move the heart to pity.
1. At Georgetown, I had the company of several persons, among whom was a physician, who had but lately removed to that place; he appears to be of a sensible and tender spirit. He mentioned a circumstance of which he was an eye witness: and it being on a subject that had nearly interested my feelings
since I crossed the Susquehanna river, I cannot but notice it.
2. While he lived back in the country, he was sent for by a slave-holder to visit a sick man. When he came to the place, he found a black man lying on a plank, with a little straw, and a poor blanket over him. In attending to him, his pulse seemed to be throbbing its last; his eyes were shut, and life nearly gone. Which, however, the slave-holder not expecting, he began to curse and to swear at the poor slave, and threatening him, how severely he would have him whipped as soon as he recovered: for, said he, he has brought this sickness upon himself, under pretensions of being religious, and going to night meetings.
3. Thus he continued his threats and swearing, when I told him the poor man could not live many minutes more. At which his countenance changed a little; and the sick man, by a sudden effort, turned himself, opened his eyes, and clasping his hands thrice, cried out in a language like this: " Oh, glory and praise unto thee, O'Lord! Oh, what mercy and goodness thou hast shown me this day!--Glory unto thee, who art now taking my soul unto thyself, having redeemed it!"--He then expired.
1. The following account of the dying hours of a converted native of Africa, was given by a Lady who witnessed her sufferings and comfort. This aged Christian was a slave in Antigua.--She says: " We often visited her, and always found her cheerful and happy, and her mouth filled with blessings. She enumerated with all the feelings of gratitude, the advantages she had derived from our coming to see her; blessing and praising God for it, and asking in the most affectionate manner for blessings on the very ship which has brought us thither.
2. " She could not, she said, forget her God, for he did not forget her: when she lay down upon her bed, he came down to her:--meaning by this to describe the spiritual communion which she enjoyed with her God and Saviour. She told us, if it was the will of " Jesus Massa" to call her to-morrow, she should be satisfied to go: if it was his will to spare her some time longer, she should be willing to stay We frequently called to see her, and always found her in the same strain of adoring gratitude and love.
3. " She often regretted her inability to come to prayers. Indeed, such was her desire to join us in worshipping God, that she once got her son to bring her on his back.
4. " When I asked her, on another occasion, how she did, she replied, she did not known; but He, who made the soul and body, knew, and the best time for calling her away. She only hoped it would not be pitch darkness; but that there might be light: and that he would remember his promises to her. She thanked me when I offered her some medicine; said she would have any thing which we gave her, and that 'Jesus Master would pay us for all.'
5. "On another visit, she asked, 'What can poor massa do more?--what can poor missis do more? They cannot take away old age.' She repeated, that she was waiting for her summons from above, and said God spared her a little, and she thanked him for it. By and by, when he saw his time, he would come, and then she would thank him for that.
6. "She once appeared to have some doubts in her mind; for when she spoke of her approaching departure, she said she should be glad to go, if she was to be happy, and if the way was not dark. On being asked if she did not love 'Jesus Massa,' she exclaimed in great surprise at the question, 'Ah! Ah!' and then told us how years ago, she had been in the habit of visiting different plantations, to hear the word of life; and that when she came in, fatigued with labour in the field, she did not go to seek for food to nourish her
body, but went in pursuit of that bread which endureth unto eternal life. This evening she said, 'Jesus Massa come closer and closer to me.'
7. "The next evening, she appeared so faint and low, as to be scarcely conscious of our coming in. After a while, however, she exerted herself to speak, and told us she was in pain from head to foot: nobody had beat her: nobody had whipped her: but 'Jesus Massa' had sent the pain, and she thanked him for it: some day when he saw good, he would come and take her away.
8. "After lingering thus for some time, still in pain, but prayer and praise ever flowing from her lips, she drew near her end. When in her greatest extremities, she said her Saviour would give her ease, when he saw fit; and if he did not give it her now, he would give it her yonder, pointing upwards.
9. "Thus this aged Christian fell asleep in Jesus. Her external condition was by no means enviable. Little, however, as it presented to charm the eye of sense, a mind of spiritual discernment perceived in her humble cottage a Heavenly Guest, whose presence shed a divine splendour around, with which all the pomp of human greatness would vainly attempt to vie."
1. ANOTHER narrative, respecting a dying woman, displays a faith so strong, a hope so full of immortality, as may lead the Christian reader to exclaim--Let my last hours be like those of this poor slave. Agnes Morris, a poor negro woman, sent a pressing request to Mrs. Thwaites, a lady resident in Antigua, to visit her:--she was in the last stage of a dropsy.
2. This poor creature ranked among the lowest class of slaves. Her all consisted of a little wattled* * Platted twigs.
* Platted twigs.
and a few clothes. Mrs. Thwaites finding her at the commencement of her illness in a very destitute condition, mentioned her case to a friend, who gave her a coat. When she paid her last visit, on her entering the door, Agnes exclaimed, "Missis! you come! This tongue can't tell what Jesus do for me! Me call my Saviour day and night; and he come." Laying her hand on her breast--"He comfort me here."
3. On being asked if she was sure of going to heaven when she died, she answered, "Yes, me sure. Me see de way clear, and shine before me"--looking and pointing upwards with a smiling face. "If da dis minute, Jesus will take me home, me ready." Some hymns being sung, she was in a rapture of joy; and in reference to the words of one of them, exclaimed, "For me--for me--poor sinner!"--Lifting up her swelled hands--"What a glory! what a glory!" Seeing her only daughter weeping, she said, "What you cry for? No cry--follow Jesus--He will take care of you." And turning to Mrs. Thwaites, she said, "Missis, show um de pa:" meaning the path to heaven.
4. Many other expressions fell from her, of a similar nature, to the astonishment of those who heard her. It was understood, she continued praying and praising God to her latest breath.
5. This poor creature was destitute of all earthly comforts. Her bed was a board, with a few plantain leaves over it. How many of these outcasts will be translated from outward wretchedness to realms of glory, there to mingle with the blessed, and sing praises to Him who lives forever!
[This illustration of the effects of slavery on the hearts of those who enforce its cruelties, is copied from "Letters from the South and West"--a publication of great merit.]
1. A rich planter's lady had long been in a consumption, and was now in the last stages of life; when, one
day, one of the old slaves came to the gate, nearly blind, and bending down under the burden of almost an hundred years of faithful service for herself, her father, and grandfather before her. His remnants of clothing were so patched, that you could hardly tell what patch was ever of any colour or substance. On his woolly head, all grey with age, was a cap of straw, of his own twisting. He stood weeping like a child, and said that he had crept up once more from the cotton field, and had been three days coming to see his sick mistress before she died.
2. His mistress sent for him to come, and spake kindly unto him; and when he was going to try to walk back again, he turned, and begged of his sick mistress to give him a little salt to put into his grit, or small hominy of rice. "Begone!" cried the almost dying mistress, flying into a rage--"begone, out this instant, you old white-wooled skeleton; out, I say, or I'll send you to the driver!"
1. THE reader will bear in mind, that the slaves transported in sundry vessels from Baltimore, as stated in the last number of this work, were taken by sea to New-Orleans. The following advertisement is from a New-Orleans paper:--
2. "The subscriber has just received by brig Lady Monro, from Baltimore, Ninety-eight Negroes: amongst which, are a number of prime field hands; a blacksmith; a rough carpenter; a brick-layer; carriage drivers; house servants; seamstresses, and washerwomen.--All of which will be sold low for cash, or on a short credit for good paper, by
JOHN WOOLFOLK, 122 Chartress-st."
3. I now have it from good authority, that five
droves were met by a traveller, on the road between Abbingdon and Winchester, in Virginia, from the 9th to the 21st of June last, going to Alabama. These droves consisted of from twenty-five to one hundred or upwards. They were mostly taken from Maryland and the eastern counties of Virginia. In one of these droves, twenty-four men were chained together!
STEPHEN DUTTON, a man of colour, residing in Wilmington, Delaware, advertised his little grand-daughter, Eliza Boyce, who is supposed to have been sold or kidnapped, and carried to some Southern market. He earnestly entreats the humane aid of all Southern towns, to observe the droves of slaves that are carried through the country, and if possible to discover her. She is about ten years old.--What a picture is here presented to a free people, tenacious of their rights!
1. The following facts have been communicated on such authority as leaves no room to doubt of their accuracy.--A negro slave in Maryland was about to be sold for three hundred dollars, in the spring, to a Georgia planter, when a white man interfered and purchased the negro, who, on the payment of the purchase money, three hundred dollars with interest, was to be manumitted. Late in July last, the Maryland purchaser came to Philadelphia, and induced the negro to go with him to that State, for the purpose of making, as he said, some public official declaration, which it was necessary to have done in open court.
2. The negro had repaid one hundred and forty dollars of the purchase money. He and the white man left the city together, and the negro has never been
permitted to return. Of him and his destination we have ascertained the following particulars. The day after he left Philadelphia, at the first stage at which they stopped in Maryland, he was seized and put in irons; four hundred dollars was paid for him, by a person said to have come from, and to reside in Alabama, and he was rapidly taken out of the State. This is a known case of inhumanity!!!
Philadelphia, August 13th, 1825.
1. A drove of negroes on their way to a market, passed through Raleigh, North-Carolina, and encamped for the night about thirty miles distant. As the owner was securing them for the night, one of them took up a stone, and struck him so with it, as brought him to the ground. In the confusion which ensued, several of them made their escape, though in chains.
Governor Coles, of Illinois, that well known advocate for liberty, has emancipated all the slaves he took with him from Virginia, and settled them on small farms.
1. The friends of negro slavery, or in other words, the abetter of rapine, cruelty, and murder, long endeavoured to propagate an opinion, that the negroes were a race of men so destitute of natural talents, as not to be qualified for a situation superior to that of a
slave. A variety of facts have proved the falsehood of this injurious aspersion; the design of which was to blind the nation, that these slave-dealers might be allowed to revel on their prey.
2. The African wants but civilization and gospel light, to make it manifest that mental powers "dwell in black and white the same;" and the God of all mercy has bestowed on some of these "poor desolate outcasts of men," that knowledge, and those riches which their proud oppressors never knew. Among those thus favoured, may be numbered the subject of the following narrative.
3. About sixteen years ago, a healthy and most valuable African slave in one of the West-Indian plantations, was converted to Christianity by being made a new creature in Christ Jesus. His wicked and brutal master, (falsely called a Christian,) did all he could to make him renounce his Saviour; and to effect this purpose, often flogged him most unmercifully.
4. This cruelty, however, did not move the poor African youth from his adherence to Christ. The master persevered in his inhuman conduct, till at length, on one day, memorable for the perpetration of the infernal deed, he was determined to make the poor slave renounce Christ, or flog him to death!! With horrible cruelty he lashed him till his flesh was torn, and it hung about him in tatters!
5. With inhuman hardness, the master, while he was thus flogging his excellent slave, tauntingly inquired, "What now does your Jesus do for you!" The boy replied, "He helps me to bear dese strokes, massa, with patience." And when this heroic martyr in the act of expiring, was sneeringly asked by his tormentor, "And now what has your Jesus done for you?" He immediately answered, with a faultering voice, "Even dis, massa, dat me can PRAY for you, and FORGIVE you."
6. Here let us pause for a moment, and contrast the situation of these two human beings; each possessed of an immortal soul, equally precious in the eyes of Him that made them. The poor slave just expiring under
the barbarous treatment of his master: and looking forward to that rest and joy which is the inheritance of the faithful, could with his latest breath like good Stephen, pray for, and forgive his cruel murderer. Though his way thither was through severe bodily suffering, his soul is doubtless for ever happy.
7. But language would fail, to paint in its true colours, the situation of the poor master; and if we have a tear of pity to bestow, let us grant it him. Avarice and tyranny must have blinded his eyes, and the cruelty of a demon taken possession of his heart. As to his sense of a state of retribution, we must leave to Him who sees us as we really are, and from whose All-seeing Eye nothing can be hid.
[From the Statesman.]
1. Some years ago, the brother of Yaradee, the king of the Solimas, was captured in war, and brought in chains for sale to the Rio-Pongas. His noble figure, awful front, and daring eye, bespoke a mind which could know but one alternative--freedom or ruin. He was exhibited like a beast in the market-place, still adorned with massy rings of gold around his ancles, as in the days of his glory.
2. The tyrant who bound him, demanded for him an enormous price, and though the warrior offered immense sums for his redemption, refused to listen a moment to his proposals. Distracted by the thought of his degradation, the tear stole from his eye, when he entreated them to cut his hair, that had long been permitted to grow, and was platted with peculiar care. Large wedges of gold were now laid at the feet of his master, to obtain his ransom.
3. All was in vain. The wretch who held him was inexorable. Supplication might as well be made to the
winds, or the cliffs and deserts of his country. Hope was now dead,--darkness, deep and interminable settled upon his soul. His faculties were shattered as by a stroke from on high; he became a maniac, and that robust frame which never trembled at danger, could not sustain the workings of his wounded spirit, but withered and perished under the weight of his chains.
4. Ye, who under the best governments in the world, range at pleasure, and enjoy all that you can desire, having none to make you afraid, could the miseries produced by the slave-trade be represented to you in their truth--in their immensity, you would not refuse your offerings to remove a curse which has consigned, and is now consigning, ten thousand manly forms to fetters, and ten thousand noble souls to despair.
1. A gentleman from the East-Indies, who lately arrived at Exeter, presented a lady with a little African boy, about nine or ten years of age, which some time since, he humanely preserved from being destroyed by a slave-merchant.
2. It appears that among many slaves which were offered for sale by the captain of the slave ship, this black infant was one; but not being able to procure a purchaser, he took the child up by the leg and arm to throw him into the ocean, and when in the very act, the above gentleman interposed, and agreed to give him some consideration for him.
1. THE following circumstances are taken from the Commercial Advertiser, of 1825, as related by a person
who attended the death-bed of a man, who had employed much of his time in the infamous business of taking up slaves, and sending them back to their masters. He says: "One evening just as I was preparing for bed, a female called upon me, and earnestly entreated me to go and see her husband, whom she believed to be near the close of life; adding, he has been long separated from me, and I arrived only yesterday, after a journey of ten days, to witness his distressed situation.
2 "Taking my trusty servant with me, I followed her, and in a few minutes, we were by the bed-side of the dying man, who was worn almost to a skeleton, and was surrounded by the appearances of abject poverty. The weeping wife threw herself on the bed, and taking one of his feeble hands in hers, told him what she had done, and intreated him to open his heart to the friend she had brought to administer consolation: when, turning his languid eyes towards me, in which horror and despair were strongly expressed--' Oh! sir,' said he, ' is there, can there be any hope for the greatest and the vilest sinner that ever lived?'
3. " Being exhausted, he fell asleep for a few minutes; but the spirit that never dies, making another struggle before its departure, he turned his eyes around upon us, and said, ' This poor suffering woman, whom I have so basely neglected, has forgiven me, but there are those who can never forgive me; those whom I have injured and betrayed, and are out of my reach--beyond any atonement I can offer.' God is infinite, said I, in all his attributes, and mercy is among the number. ' Oh, sir! I know it,' replied he; 'but there is one base act of treachery, besides that to my poor wife, which hangs like a millstone about my neck. Having left my native state in poverty and distress, brought on by bad habits, I came to Philadelphia, and being willing to do almost any thing, I soon fell in with two slave-owners from my own state, looking for some slaves who had made their escape from them: and having it in my power to assist them, I did it, and they rewarded me
beyond my highest expectations; and for six years, I obtained a disgraceful subsistence by such acts of cruelty.
4. " ' Among other transactions of that period, was the apprehension of a man called James. He had belonged to the estate of Mr. R--, of Albamarl county, the recollection of which torments me inexpressibly. At the death of Mr. R--, James passed into the hands of those who treated him very ill--and he ran away. When I first fell in with him, he lived on a small lot in New-Jersey with his wife, a free woman, whom he had married in Virginia, and contrived to bring with him, and three children.
5. " ' After losing my way, and travelling some hours on foot, I came to his little habitation, late at night. He treated me very kindly, gave me food, and his own bed, while himself and wife occupied chairs by the fire; and in the morning, he walked with me several miles, to put me in the right way: it was in vain that I offered him a small reward, he would not take it.
6. " ' Months had passed away, when by chance my eyes lit upon an old advertisement, offering a large reward for his apprehension. I knew at once it was James, for I had observed a remarkable scar on his chin, which was mentioned in the description of him. Hard as my heart then was, and callous to every feeling of humanity, I could not help shuddering at the thought of betraying my kind friend: but the prospect of gain soon made my decision. I wrote to his master, and received his answer. All things being prepared, and I was to have fifty dollars more than the sum mentioned in the advertisement.
7. " ' I went alone again to his quiet retreat; it was in winter, and the weather had been piercing cold, and the river Delaware was closed, and arrived at early twilight. How bitter has my thoughts been since, when I have recollected the honest satisfaction that gleamed in his sable features when I approached. During the evening, I proposed to him a removal into Pennsylvania: I told him I had a few acres of land, suitable for
a garden, and a comfortable dwelling-house, in the neighbourhood of the city, and that, recollecting his former kindness to me, I had come to persuade him to occupy the one, and improve the other, for which I could afford to give him high wages.
8. " ' The poor man agreed to accompany me next day, to look at the premises; and if it pleased him, to take possession of them on the first of April. Early in the morning, I was awaked by preparations for breakfast; and they were delighted with my taking so much notice of them as I did, and with my gratitude for the services they had rendered me; the whole family were cheerful.
9. "'We parted with light hearts, and James and I reached the river in due time, and entered on the ice. Hitherto, we had walked side by side, but now he fell a little behind me; and we had proceeded but a little way, when I perceived the ice to give way, and I immediately went down as far as my arms, which I stretched out, and so supported myself for some minutes, until James threw me the end of his great-coat, to which I held, and he pulled me out, and taking me on his shoulder, carried me very much exhausted to the shore."
10. "Here the sick man closed his eyes, and lay for a short time; when, reviving, he resumed the affecting narrative:--' On coming to myself again, I found what my intended innocent victim had been prompted to do by feelings of humanity and gratitude, and had rescued me from inevitable destruction. Shall I tell you what followed?'--' Oh! my husband,' exclaimed the wife, 'you could not have persevered in your wicked purpose--you never could have sent the man into slavery who had preserved your Life?
11. "'Yes I could, I did!' replied the husband--'cold-blooded villain that I was: the very day which witnessed my danger and my delivery, saw me assist in binding--chaining, hand and foot, him to whom I was indebted for my worthless life!--Separated from his wife and children, and freedom, he departed without
uttering a single word. Once, and once only, he suffered his eyes to dwell for an instant on mine, which sunk before their glare--never can I forget that agonizing and despairing glance--it haunts me in broad daylight--it is with me in the deepest shades of night!'
12. "Here my servant had risen up, and stood behind me, his eyes glistening with tears that trickled down his ebon cheeks; when the sick man's eyes lighting upon him, he exclaimed in the extremity of terror--'James is there--behind you, sir--he is come to torment me already--take him away--take him away!' he repeated slowly, and sunk into a slumber from which he never awoke!"
13. "The eyes of the Lord are upon the ways of man, he seeth all his goings. There is no darkness, nor shadow of death where the workers of iniquity may hide themselves. He striketh them as wicked men in the open sight of others. They cause the cry of the poor to come unto Him; and he heareth the cry of the afflicted. When He giveth quietness, who can make trouble? And when He hideth his face, who then can behold him? whether it be a nation, or a man only." Job xxxiv.
1. As W. A. B. a citizen of New-York, was returning from Albany, in the winter of 1818 or 1819, in the stage-coach they were overturned, and he was so much hurt, as to render him unable to proceed: he therefore remained at a house about twenty miles from the city. Not long after his fellow-travellers had left him, a man by the name of Howard, with two little black boys, in a covered sleigh, stopped at the door; and our traveller feeling sufficiently recovered from his hurt to proceed on his journey in an easy way, requested Howard to allow him to take a seat in his sleigh, and
accompany him to New-York, whither he told him he was going.
2. His request was at first refused, but after much persuasion, and an offer of payment for the trouble, he was permitted to bear them company. On leaving the house, one of the boys was placed on the back of the sleigh, (perhaps because their conversation might betray the wicked purposes of their master,) and this boy being often called to, were circumstances which created suspicion that all was not right. They had not gone far, before the boy was missing; and Howard going back to look for him, gave B. an opportunity of asking the other boy some questions; from whose answers he plainly perceived that the design was to take them to the southern states, for the purpose of selling them.
.3 The boy being soon found, they proceeded quietly along till near evening, when they reached the city. B. being left at his own house, he sent a person after Howard, to see where he put up; but instead of going to a livery stable, as he said he should, he went directly to the ferry at Powles Hook and crossed. This information was communicated by B to some of the members of the Manumission Society, and two of them, C. M. and S. W.. who were of the standing committee, were next morning, though it was a severe snow-storm, at the ferry before daylight, and crossing as soon as they could, pursued him several miles on the post road to Philadelphia; but finding on inquiry, that he had turned off into a by-way, they followed and overtook him, after travelling several miles further.
4. At the house where he had put up, he appeared to be very familiar, and said he had been frequently there, on his way to and from Washington. Being informed that he had violated the laws of New-York, in bringing the boys away, and that he must return with them, he made many excuses; but they were not sufficient, and they all returned together.
5. It appeared, however, on examination, of both
Howard and the boys, that they were going by their own consent; therefore, after a severe reprimand, and Howard had left money to pay the passage of one of them in the stage coach, back to the place of his residence, he was suffered to depart. The other, named John Jackson, is a near connexion of Peter Williams's wife, in this city. This one was soon sent to sea, and has followed that employment ever since; the other soon returned home. They were both taken to P. W's house, where they remained some days.
6. From the boys' account, it appears, that one of them had run away from his master in Connecticut, and had gone to Peekskill, where the other lived. There Howard meeting with them, told them of many fine and curious things to be seen at Washington, to which place he was going, and whither he would carry them, free of expense. When they passed through the city, he told them they must lie close in the bottom of the sleigh for fear they would be taken away, and kept as chimney-sweepers.
7 They were so entirely deceived by his promises, and so pleased with the prospect he held out to them, that they could scarcely be persuaded to quit his company, even when their danger was stated to them.--Poor boys! they did not know the miserable state to which this base man was leading them.
1. IN the year 1819, a decent looking man, residing at Sturbridge, in the interior of Massachusetts, called at the house of a coloured woman in Boston, and inquired if she had not a son, whom she was willing to place on his farm in the country. He promised to feed and clothe him, and to give him an ordinary school education. The poor woman rejoiced at the prospect of obtaining so advantageous a situation for her child, without inquiring into his character, as she ought to
have done, gladly gave her consent; and furnishing the boy with all his best clothing, despatched him on his journey with, as she thought, his future master for the country.
2. Instead of taking him to Sturbridge, as he had promised, this man placed him on board a vessel bound to New-York, and set sail with him the same day for that place. Immediately on his arrival there, he inquired for a vessel bound and ready to sail for a southern port. He soon found one on the eve of departing for Savannah, and took the boy on board; but providentially, a change of wind prevented them from sailing until the next day.
3. In the mean time, he went on shore to amuse himself, and left orders for the boy to remain in the forecastle, stating to the hands that he was his property, and that they must not permit him to go on shore, lest he should be lost. The poor child remained there according to his directions, ignorant of the fate that awaited him.
4. Fearful that something was wrong, but still not suspecting that he could meet with any injury from the person to whom his only surviving parent had entrusted him, with the strongest injunctions of obedience. Whilst he was in that situation, and at times manifesting his grief by tears, the pilot, who was employed to take the ship to sea, when he came on board in the morning, attracted by his interesting appearance, and the mournful expression of his countenance, inquired of him the cause of his being there alone, (for the kidnapper was still on shore,) where he was going, and what was the matter with him.
5. The boy told him his story in the simplicity of his heart, that he had left his mother to go into the country upon a farm, and that the man whom he was going with, had gone away and left him alone. The humane pilot immediately suspected the truth, took him by the hand, and led him up to a member of the New-York Manumission Society, who made himself
acquainted with the particulars of his situation, and promised him his protection.
6. Shortly after, the kidnapper made his appearance, in pursuit of his prey, and upon his arrival, was taken before the police justices of the city, and committed for his offence. The boy was given up to the members of the Manumission Society, and returned by them to his mother in Boston, to whom he was the first to communicate the particulars of his escape from the dreadful fate which had awaited him.
7. The miserable wretch who had brought him away, in consequence of the interference and solicitations of his friends, and of some indications which were given of his having been at times insane, was permitted to return to his friends, who promised to prevent him from engaging in similar practices in future.
1. The following extraordinary exertions to obtain liberty, an object so congenial with the best feelings of the human heart, is taken from the New-York Commercial Advertiser of 1822:--
2. "That human being, who would run the gauntlet for freedom, so desperately, as the poor African appears to have done, whose story is given below, should surely, never again be brought under the lash of a task-master.
3. "The captain of a vessel from North Carolina, called upon the police for advisement respecting a slave he had unconsciously brought away in his vessel, under the following curious circumstances:--
4. "Three or four days after he had got to sea, he began to be haunted every hour with tones of distress seemingly proceeding from a human voice in the very lowest part of the vessel. A particular scrutiny was finally instituted, and it was concluded that the creature, whatever, or whoever it might be, must be confined
down in the run under the cabin floor; and on boreing a hole with an auger, and demanding, Who's there? a feeble voice responded, "poor negro, massa!" It was clear enough then that some runaway negro had hid himself there, before they sailed, trusting to Providence for his ultimate escape. Having discovered him, however it was impossible to give him relief, for the captain had stowed even the cabin so completely full with cotton, as but just to leave room for a small table for himself and the mate to eat on; and as for unloading at sea, that was pretty much out of the question. Accordingly there he had to lie, stretched at full length, for the tedious interval of thirteen days, till the vessel arrived in port and unloaded, receiving his food and drink through the auger hole.
5. "The fellow's story is, now he is released, that being determined to get away from slavery, he supplied himself with eggs, and biscuit, and some jugs of water, which latter he was just on the point of depositing in his lurking place, when he discovered the captain at a distance coming on board, and had to hurry down as fast as possible and leave them; that he lived on nothing but his eggs and biscuit, till discovered by the captain, not even getting a drop of water, except what he had the good fortune to catch in his hand one day, when a vessel of water, in the cabin was upset, during a squall, and some of it run down through the cracks of the floor, over him."
A boy called Abraham, not quite four years old, was not only remarkably patient and resigned during his last illness, but his conversation proved an abiding blessing to his father, who happened then to be in an unhappy state of mind. On the day before he died, he asked him--"Father do you love me?" The father replied, "Yes I do." Upon repeating his question,
he received the same answer. "But then" added he, "do you love our Saviour?" "No." replied the father, "I am just now very poor and miserable." "Ah!" said the child, "if you do not love our Saviour, you cannot love me as you ought."
[From the Hartford (Conn.) Courant,]
DIED--In this city, John Mosely, an aged coloured man, well known for his industry, prudence, and integrity. Having no relations, he devoted his property to charitable objects. By his will, he gave to the Hartford Female Beneficent Society, 100 dollars; to the American Colonization Society, 200 dollars; to the Connecticut Bible Society, 100 dollars; to the American Education Society, 100 dollars; and after other legacies, the residue of his estate to the Domestic Missionary Society of Connecticut.
NANCY PITCHFORD, a woman of colour, died in 1824, at Hartford, Connecticut, aged 67 years. For the first forty years of her life, she was a slave. She sustained an excellent character, was for many years a professor of religion, and gave satisfactory evidence of sincere and lively piety. At the time of her death, she had acquired, by her industry and care, more than four hundred dollars, the whole of which, after paying the expences of her last sickness and funeral, she left by will, to charitable purposes.
1. DIED near Mount Holly, New-Jersey, 12th of 6th mo. 1824, in the 90th year of his age, William Bowen, a man of colour.
2. The deceased was one of those who has demonstrated the truth of that portion of Scripture, "That in every nation he that feareth God and worketh righteousness, is accepted of him." He was concerned in early life to do justly, love mercy, and to walk humbly with his God; and by close attention to the light of Christ, and faithfully abiding under the operation of that blessed spirit of Divine Grace in his soul, he was enabled not only to bear many precious testimonies, through his life, but to bring forth those fruits of the spirit, which redound to the Glory of God, and to the salvation of the soul. He was an exemplary member of the religious Society of Friends. As he lived, so he died, a rare pattern of a self-denying follower of Jesus Christ. He had no apparent disease either of body or mind, and as he expressed himself, but a short time before his death, "he felt nothing but weakness," which continued to increase until he gently breathed his last, and is no doubt entered into his Heavenly Father's rest. "Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright, for the end of that man is peace."
The following Epitaph, on a coloured person, is copied from a Tomb Stone, in the neighbourhood of Providence, R. I.:--
1. Here lies the best of slaves,
All crumbling into dust,
Cæsar, the Ethiopian, craves
A place among the just.
2. His faithful soul has fled,
To realms of heavenly light,
And by the blood that Jesus shed,
He's chang'd from black to white.
1. DIED in Philadelphia, about the middle of the summer, 1824, Sarah Hoar, a woman of colour. In 1817, she went to a house in that city to ask for cold provision, and the people seeing her much afflicted, supplied her with food. She afterwards came frequently, and feeling desirous to know more of her situation and history, they made her a visit, and found her statement of circumstances correct, and were encouraged to assist her. She was afflicted with a cancer in her face, which had so disfigured her by its ravages, as to make it necessary to have it covered. In their frequent visits, they generally found her suffering with severe pain, and the disorder increasing, soon made swallowing difficult, and in time it so affected her eyes that she became entirely blind.
2. Inquiry was made whether she had a doctor, "She said she had had a number, but none of them could cure her. A doctor who lived near had been very kind to her, that he washed and dressed her face twice a day--gave her medicine, and did not charge her any thing for it, though he was a poor man." On making the doctor and his wife a visit--the wife said her husband sometimes scanted his own family, to give to this poor suffering woman. And the doctor said he believed her to be a good woman, and it was for Christ's sake that he took care of her, and that he was kind to her because he thought it his duty; and several times repeated with tears in his eyes, he believed when she died she would go to heaven.
3. When some of the family went to see her in extreme cold weather, they found the only covering to her bed was a few old rags; yet of this she had not complained, and they would not have known it, but for going into her lodging-room to see what she stood in need of. She said, sometimes in the night her sufferings were so great, that she could not sleep, and she had got up and prayed
to God for relief, after which the pain abated so that she could lie down and sleep.
4. A subscription was raised to pay her board, and the persons of her own colour, with whom she was placed, were glad to take care of her, and showed her much kindness; and of the great number who visited her, we never heard any speak a word to her disadvantage, but on the contrary, saying often that she was a good woman, and bore an excellent character.
5. After the disease had affected her eyes so that she could not see those who came in, a young woman who frequently visited her, says, "When I spoke, she immediately knew my voice, and always shook my hand in the most affectionate manner possible, telling me how glad she was that I came to see her; and then making grateful inquiries about those persons who so kindly contributed to her support.
6. "The doctor told me he sometimes found her on her knees praying, and as she could not see him, and as he was unwilling to disturb her, he generally waited quietly until she had finished, without her knowing that he was there.
7. "Many nights towards the last, her sufferings were so extreme, she could not even lie down to sleep, and yet in all her troubles she seemed grateful for the blessings she received, and I do not recollect that I ever heard her speak in a dissatisfied manner.
8. "Her children were worthless creatures, and in her greatest affliction they deserted her. This, though a source of trouble to her, she endeavoured to bear patiently. I knew her seven years. In all that time she was in the situation described, and had been so a long time before.
9. "Sometime having passed without my seeing her, when one morning the person with whom she had lived, came and told us she was dead. About four o'clock that morning, she appeared as well as common, when the family heard her at prayer, according to her usual custom. At breakfast she seemed a little unwell, and had lost her appetite.
10. "They sent for the doctor, who, when he came and saw her, said she was dying, and soon after she breathed her last, and I firmly believe she has gone to a place of rest, where she will receive a reward for her long continued patience, during the many years of suffering allotted her.--Let the reader of these few lines remember that God sees us in all our afflictions, and will comfort all who act correctly, and endeavour to keep the word of his patience."
[From the Genius of Universal Emancipation.]
1. It may be recollected that the family of slaves-belonging to David Patterson, of North-Carolina, were sent to Hayti a short time ago. This family consisted of an elderly woman, her six children, and four grand-children. They were recommended to the special notice of President Boyer, and received his particular attention.
2. The following letter was received just as this paper was going to press:--
"Port au-Prince, April 12th, 1825.
"SIR,--With pleasure I embrace this favourable opportunity to write to you, to inform you that we have arrived safe, and are all well. We have been kindly received, and are doing tolerably well at present, on the president's plantation: we are all satisfied, for the present, except Adam. Please to write to our people, and direct them to send their letters to you; and please when you receive them, send them to us. When you write, we all wish our particular respects presented to them.
"Your Humble Servant,
"MR. B. LUNDY.
3. A highly esteemed female correspondent, speaking of the recent benevolent conduct of D Patterson, states that she visited his dwelling on the day when his
laves set out for Baltimore, and gave the following account of the solemn parting.
4. "The impressive scene was now about to be closed. Solemn concern rested on the face of the mistress, at parting with those to whom her fostering care had contributed so much. I saw the liberated captive receive her hand with sobs and tears; and I must confess that my own eyes could scarce retain or re-absorb the chrystal treasure, forced from its cell by this act of justice.
5. "Seriousness pervaded the countenances of many spectators. The master, after taking a solemn leave, walked into his house with a cheerful mein, (blessed were his feelings!) that seemed to say, "I have washed my hands in innocency, and can now sit down under my own vine in peace."
6. This worthy couple have long been members of the Baptist Society; and often said they could not rest easy until something should be done for the enlargement of their slaves. May we not indulge the hope, that this is a "breaking of the ice" in this frozen state? Or must we stand chilled, and look in vain for another couple that shall come under the refining power of truth, and go and do likewise.
1. A paragraph has lately gone the round of the papers, announcing that a gentleman of Virginia had emancipated upwards of eighty slaves, and chartered a vessel to send them at his own expense to Hayti; but without giving the name of the author of so distinguished an act of munificence.
2. We think it due to justice, says the Norfolk Herald to supply this deficiency, and to add the following facts which have been communicated to us by gentlemen familiar with them, as well as by Capt. Russell, one of the owners of the Brig Hannah and Elizabeth of Baltimore, the vessel chartered.
3. The gentleman who has thus distinguished himself, is Mr. DAVID MINGE, of Charles City County, lying near Sandy Point, on James River. Captain Russell informs, that there were put on board the Hannah and Elizabeth, eighty seven coloured people of different ages, from three months to forty years, being all the slaves Mr. M. owned except two old men, whom he had likewise manumitted, but who being past service, he retains and supports them.
4. The value of these negroes, at the prices now going might be estimated at about twenty-six thousand dollars! and Mr. Minge expended previous to their embarkation, about twelve hundred dollars in purchasing ploughs, hoes, iron, and other articles of husbandry for them, besides providing them with several suits of clothes to each, provisions, groceries, cooking utensils, and every thing which he supposed they might require for their comfort during the passage, and for their use after their arrival out.--He also paid sixteen hundred dollars for the charter of the vessel.
5. But Mr. Minge's munificence does not end here.--On the bank of the river, as they were about to go on board, he had a peck of dollars brought down, and calling them all around him, under a tree, distributed the board among them, in such sums and under such regulations, that each individual did, or would, receive seven dollars.
6. By this provision Mr. M. calculated that his emigrants would be enabled to commence the cultivation of the soil immediately after their arrival, without being dependent on President Boyer for any favour whatever, unless the permission to improve the government lands might be so considered.
7. Mr. Minge is about twenty-four or twenty-five years of age, unmarried, and is unincumbered in every respect; possesses an ample fortune, and has received the benefits of a collegiate education at Harvard University. He assigned no other motive for having freed his slaves, and for his subsequent acts of generosity towards them, than that he conceived it would be doing
a service to his country to send them out of it; that they had been good servants, but that he was rich enough without them.
8. We have heard of splendid sacrifices at the shrine of philanthropy; aged men, on quitting the stage of mortal existence, have bequeathed large endowments to public charities, and princely legacies to religious and moral institutions. But where shall we find an instance of the kind attributable to a man of Mr. Minge's age? The case we believe is without a parrallel.
9. In addition to the fact of emancipation of eighty slaves by Mr. Minge, of Virginia, the Richmond Whig of Friday last, says, that two instances of the triumph of philanthropy and patriotism, over the sordid selfishness of our nature, can be recited, equally as meritorious and splendid as that act of distinguished munificence.
10. The Rev. Fletcher Andrew, an ordained minister of the Methodist Episcopal Church, had received from the bounty of a dying relative, twenty slaves, at that time valued at ten thousand dollars; shortly after he attained the age of twenty-one years, although they constituted nearly the whole of his worldly property, this amiable and pious man, generously emancipated every one of them. And Mr. Charles Crenshaw, a farmer, residing in the neighbourhood of Richmond, has recently manumitted all the slaves he owned, amounting altogether to sixty.
[From the New-York Spectator of February, 1826.]
1. The Mayor of Philadelphia has recently received a letter from Mississippi, stating the arrival of a kidnapper by the name of Ebenezer F. Johnson, with three negro boys, and one negro woman, for sale--the three former having been kidnapped and stolen from Philadelphia.
The woman was a slave taken from Virginia.
2. The boys have fallen into the hands of a humane protector, and will probably be reclaimed. The mode by which they were entrapped was this. A mulatto man engaged them singly, to help bring melons on shore from a sloop; and when they went on board, they were taken below--seized, confined, and carried off.
1. A poor chimney-sweeper's boy was employed at the house of a lady of rank, to sweep the chimney of the room in which she usually dressed. When finding himself on the hearth of a richly furnished dressing-room, and perceiving no one there, he waited a few moments to take a view of the beautiful things in the apartment.
2. A gold watch, richly set with diamonds, particularly caught his attention, and he could not forbear taking it in his hand. Immediately the wish arose in his mind, "Ah! if thou hadst such a one!" After a pause, he said to himself, "But if I take it I shall be a thief; and yet," continued he, "nobody would know it; nobody sees me--nobody! does not God see me, who is present every where?" Overcome by these thoughts, a cold shivering seized him; "No;" said he, putting down the watch, "I had much rather be poor, and keep my good conscience, than rich, and become a rascal." At these words, he hastened back into the chimney.
3. The lady, who was in the room adjoining, having overheard the conversation with himself, sent for him the next morning, and thus accosted him:--"My little friend, why did you not take the watch yesterday?" The boy fell on his knees, speechless and astonished. "I heard every thing you said;" continued her ladyship
--"thank God for enabling you to resist this temptation, and be watchful over yourself for the future: from this moment you shall be in my service: I will both maintain and clothe you: nay, more, I will procure you good instruction, which will assist to guard you from the danger of similar temptations."
4. The boy burst into tears; he was anxious to express his gratitude, but could not. The lady strictly kept her promise, and had the pleasure of seeing this poor chimney-sweeper grow up a good, pious, and intelligent man.
1. AN Indian being among his white neighbors, asked for a little tobacco to smoke, and one of them, having some loose in his pocket, gave him a handful. The day following, the Indian came back, inquiring for the donor, saying he had found a quarter of a dollar among the tobacco: being told that as it was given him he might as well keep it, he answered, pointing to his breast, "I got a good man, and a bad man here, and the good man say, it an't mine; I must return it to the owner: the bad man say, why he give it you, and it is your own now: the good man say that's not right; the tobacco is yours not the money: the bad man say, never mind, you got it, go buy some dram: the good man say, no, no, you must not do so: so I don't know what to do, and I think I go to sleep; but the good man, and the bad keep talking all night, and trouble me, and now I bring the money back I feel good."
2. Another Indian related, that having got some money, he was on his way home tempted to stop at a tavern and buy some rum: but, said he, pointing to his breast, "I have a good boy, and a bad boy here; and the good boy say. John, don't you stop there--the had one say, poh! John, never mind, you love a good dram: the good boy say, no John, you know what a fool you made yourself when you got drunk there before, don't do so again. When I come to the tavern,
the bad boy say, come, John, take one dram; it won't hurt you--the good one say, no, John, if you take one dram, then you take another--then I don't know what to do, and the good boy say, run, John, hard as you can--so I run away; and then, be sure, I feel very glad."
1. Captain James Smith relates, that he was taken prisoner by the Indians in the year 1755, and lived several years among them. At one time, he lived with an old man named Tecaughretanego, and his little son, Nunganny; they were quite alone, and there were not any inhabitants for many miles round. The old man was too lame to go out hunting; it was winter; they had no victuals; the snow was on the ground, and so frozen, as to make a great noise when walked on, which frightened away the deer, and the Captain could not shoot any thing for some time.
2. He says, "After I had hunted two days without eating any thing, and had very short allowance for some days before, I returned late in the evening, faint and weary. When I came into our hut, the old man asked what success? I told him not any. He asked me if I was not very hungry? I replied, that the keen appetite seemed in some measure abated, but I was both faint and weary.
3. "He commanded his little son to bring me something to eat; and he brought me a kettle with some bones and broth. After eating a few mouthfuls, my appetite violently returned, and I thought the victuals had a most agreeable relish, though it was only fox and wild-cat bones, which lay about the ground, which the ravens and turkey-buzzards had picked; these Nunganny had collected and boiled, until the sinews that remained on them would strip off. I speedily finished my allowance; and when I had ended my sweet repast.
the old man asked me how I felt. I told him I was much refreshed. He then handed me his pipe and pouch, and told me to take a good smoke. I did so. He then said he had something of importance to tell me, if I was now composed and ready to hear it. I told him I was ready to hear him. He said, 'The reason why he deferred his speech till now, was, because few men are in a right humour to hear good talk when they are very hungry, as they are then generally fretful and discomposed; but as you now appear to enjoy calmness and serenity of mind, I will now communicate to you the thoughts of my heart--and those things I know to be true.
4. "'Brother, as you have lived with the white people, you have not had the same advantage of knowing that the great Being above feeds his people, and gives them their meat in due season, as we Indians have, who are frequently out of provisions, and yet are wonderfully supplied, and that so frequently, that it is evidently the hand of the Great Spirit that does this: whereas, the white people have commonly large stocks of tame cattle, that they can kill when they please; and they also have barns and cribs, filled with grain, and therefore have not the same opportunity of seeing that they are supported by the Ruler of heaven and earth.
5. "'Brother, I know you are now afraid that we will all perish with hunger, but you have no just reason to fear this.
6. "'Brother, I have been young, but am now old. I have been frequently under the like circumstances that we now are, and some time or other, in almost every year of my life; yet, I have hitherto been supported, and my wants supplied in time of need.
7. "'Brother, the Good Spirit sometimes suffers us to be in want, in order to teach us our dependence on Him, and to let us know that we are to love and serve Him; likewise to know the worth of the favours that we receive, and also to make us thankful.
8. "'Brother, be assured that you will be supplied with food; and that just in the right time: but you must
continue diligent in the use of means--go to sleep, and rise early in the morning, and go a hunting--be strong and exert yourself like a man, and the Great Spirit will direct your way.'
9. "The Captain was thus encouraged to try again the next morning, though much disheartened and extremely hungry. He went a great distance before he could shoot any thing; but at length he shot a buffalo cow: thus finding, as the good old Indian had said, that the Great Spirit enabled him to provide for them just at the time of their distress."
1. A person going to see a very aged woman of colour, found a respectable looking white girl sitting by her, reading the Bible for her. On inquiring of the old woman whether she could ever read, was answered--"O yes, misses, and I used to read a great deal in that book, (pointing to a Bible very much worn, that lay on the table,) but now I am most blind, and the good girls read for me; but by and by, when I get on Zion's Hill, I shall then see as well as any body."
2. The poor of this world are often found rich in faith, and their confidence in the wisdom and goodness of a bountiful Creator, strong. How frequently on visiting the abodes of the aged and the infirm, do we find this verified: one saying, when something is handed them, "The Lord has sent me this."--Another, "The Lord put it into my heart to be industrious, and lay up something for old age," &c.
1. THE "Clarkson Association," for instructing adult females of colour, commenced in the spring of 1811
and was conducted ten or twelve years by a number of young females of the Society of Friends. This was the first institution that came under the appellation of Sabbath School in that city, where there are now so many. It was taught on that day, because those people had generally more leisure to attend, than on other days of the week: but these benevolent females soon appropriated also one afternoon in the middle of the week, for such as were at liberty to attend. There were a considerable number of aged women, as well as those in the prime of life, who learned to read, and rejoiced greatly in the acquisition. There were also schools kept by young men, for adults of colour.
2. The African Free Schools, under the care of the Manumission Society in New-York, have engaged the attention of many distinguished persons. who have visited the city: and many encouraging observations on these schools, have appeared in the public prints.
3. The following remarks are taken from one of the daily papers of 1824:--"We had the pleasure of attending the annual examination of the scholars of the 'New-York African Free School;' and we are free to confess, that we never derived more satisfaction, or felt a deeper interest in any school exhibition. The male and female schools were united on this occasion, and the whole number present was about six hundred. The exercises of the scholars were commenced by an address spoken by one of the lads; in which were included thirteen lines from Cowper, in favour of liberty, beginning with'For there is yet a liberty unsung.'
4. "The examinations were in reading, writing, arithmetic, a critical examination in American geography, and a grammar class; with a recitation of several appropriate pieces; and an exhibition of work done by the females in their department, (this branch of their education is under the care of a committee of females, annually appointed by the Trustees of those schools, whose business it is to visit the school, once or more
every week.) A list of the articles exhibited, made within the past year, are as follows:--Shirts, 93; pillowcases, 61; sheets, 7; cravats, 49; towels, 23; handkerchiefs, 15; wristbands and collars, 25 pair; dresses for scholars, 13; fine samplers, 9; bench covers, 1 pair; pocket-books, 2;--knitting, 27 pair of childrens' socks; 26 pair suspenders; 7 pair of stockings, and 6 pincushions. These specimens of knitting and needlework, all appeared to much advantage.
5 "The number in this department is 154; of which there are 56 acquainted with making garments and marking, and 42 with knitting socks, stockings, suspenders, &c.; the remainder are progressing in those branches. Of this school Eliza J. Cox is teacher,--and Charles C. Andrews that for boys.
6. "The whole scene was highly interesting, and we never beheld a white school, of the same age, (of and under fifteen,) in which, without exception, there was more order, neatness of dress, and cleanliness of person. And the exercises were performed with a degree of promptness and accuracy, that was surprising. We could plainly perceive, (notwithstanding what is asserted to the contrary,) that the effects of education were as visible upon the countenances of these children, as they are upon those that are white. Their countenances beaming with intelligence, and the liveliness of their spirits, with their apparent happiness, was a subject of universal remark. There were two or three southern gentlemen present, and we should have been pleased had there been many more.
7. "There is one remarkable fact, connected with the effects of this excellent school upon the moral condition of the blacks. At every term of the court of sessions in this city, there are many blacks convicted of crimes, and sent to the state prison or penitentiary. This school has now been in operation a number of years, and several thousand scholars have received the benefits of a good thorough English education, and but three persons, who have been educated here, have been convicted in our criminal courts. This single fact speaks
volumes in favour of education, and endeavouring to improve the condition of this unfortunate class of people. It is the cultivation of the mind and the heart, which teaches them to be honest, makes them quiet and orderly citizens, and leads them to a knowledge of the means whereby they may obtain comfort in this life, and happiness in the life to come."
8. Several girls, who have received their education at this school, have gone with their parents to Hayti, where they will be capable of teaching schools, and may be of singular benefit.--Two interesting letters from one of these girls, has been received by E.J. Cox; extracts from which are here subjoined.
"Republic of Hayti, City of St. Domingo, Sept. 29, 1824.
9. "With pleasure I hasten to inform you of our safe arrival in St. Domingo, after a passage of twenty-one days: mother and myself were very much afflicted with sea-sickness, for about nine or ten days, but after that, we enjoyed a little of the pleasures of our voyage.
10. "On our arrival, we were conducted by the captain of the port to the Governor's house, where we were received by him with all the friendship that he could have received us with, had we been intimately acquainted for years. After informing him of our intention of residing on the Island, we were conducted to the residence of the second General in command, where we had our names registered. From thence we went to see the principal chapel in the city; to give a description of which, it requires a far abler pen than mine; (she however mentions many particulars) but you cannot form an idea of it, unless you could see for yourself. After we had viewed the church throughout, we were conducted to our lodgings, at which place we are at present.
11. "Since we have been here, my sampler and bench cover have been seen by a number of ladies and gentlemen, and have been very much admired by all
who have seen them.--Dear Teacher, notwithstanding we are hundreds of miles from each other, I hope you will not think that I shall forget you, nor those kind friends, (I mean the Trustees,) who have been so kind to me: for had it not been for them and yourself, perhaps I never should have known one half what I do, as respects my education; for which, for them and you, to God I shall offer up my humble prayers for your welfare, both in this life, and that which is to come. Please to give my kind respects to Mr. Andrews, and my love to all my school-mates.--Father, mother, and brothers, join in love with me to you and Mr. Andrews.
"P. S.--Please to get 3 yards of fine white canvass, 3 yards fine yellow, 3 sets of knitting needles, and 2 skeins of blue worsted--which I forgot.--Mother has enclosed four dollars for the same.
"I am with respect, yours,
SERENA M. BALDWIN.'
"Republic of Hayti, City of St. Domingo, June 30, 1825
12. "I received your letter, dated November 11, 1824, and was truly happy to hear from you:--the canvass, worsted, and books, I received also--for which I thank you kindly. The advice that you have given me, I shall cherish in my bosom, and hope the impression it will make there, shall be such as time can never destroy. Although we are separated from each other hundreds of mile, I shall ever consider it my duty to adhere to your advice; especially when it is such as concerns my eternal welfare.
13. "Among your good wishes, you wish I may live to enjoy freedom. Dear Teacher, if ever there was a country where Liberty dwells, it is here. It is a blessing enjoyed alike by all men, without respect to fortune or colour--it cannot be otherwise, as our motto is 'Liberty and Equality.' As respects our situation, it is a pleasant one. Picture to yourself a farm a quarter of a mile from the city, containing about twelve
acres of even land, in the centre of which stands a little white cottage, surrounded by every kind of fruit trees that the Island produces, besides vegetables of every kind, which we have raised since we have been here. Add to these, two cows, one calf, geese, ducks, and upwards of one hundred chickens, and I am certain you will agree with me, in saying our situation is truly pleasant.
14. "On New-Years day, which is the anniversary of our Independence, we went to the parade, where the troops were assembled in the public square at an early hour--(after mentioning divers particulars, she concludes with saying,) at ten o'clock, the inhabitants with one accord, retired to their respective homes, without the least noise or tumult. Thus passed the day of Haytian Independence.--My parents join with me in love to you and Mr. Andrews, &c.
SERENA M. BALDWIN."[These letters were written in a very fair intelligible hand, by a girl about fourteen years old.]
15. "You wish to know how I am likely to make out to live in this country.--I have received a plantation from the government, and find the soil good for tillage, and its productions good for food. We have plenty of vegetable food, though meat is not procured in such abundance here as in America. Many of the emigrants are dissatisfied on that account: they are impatient, and indulge in complaints, like the children of Israel, when in the wilderness, not knowing the good prospect that awaits them.--Every one that will patiently bear a little privation at first, can live here, and do well."
16. "I am in good health, and the production of my land is in good order, yielding coffee, corn, sweet potatoes,
yams, banannas, oranges, pine-apples, cotton trees in abundance, and oil trees. I have 2000 bearing coffee trees, besides young ones, too numerous to mention. My plantation is eight miles from the City of Cape Hayti. I come to town every Saturday, to hear news from America, and the price of coffee. As soon as I get my coffee in, I shall send you a hundred pounds to try it."
[Communicated to the Compiler.]
1. In the African School for boys, in Mulberry-street, a class has long been established, which is perhaps the only one of the kind in the city of New York: it is composed of such boys as are the best behaved, and most advanced in their learning, say in arithmetic, as far as the Rule of Three. They are distinguished in school, by a medal suspended to the neck, on which are engraved the words, "Class of Merit."
2. This class has a regular meeting once a month, to transact business, and to hear the reports of standing and other committees. It is allowed one hour each session to conduct its business. Its officers are a Chairman, Secretary, Register, and Treasurer. The class by a vote, determine in what branch of learning a member shall excel, to entitle him to the chair at the next succeeding meeting--the teacher always deciding. I have seen some specimens of penmanship, map drawing, composition, both in prose and verse, the performance of those lads, the result of this laudable emulation.
3. The Chairman preserves order and decorum at the meetings of the class: the Secretary records, in a neat manner, their proceedings: the Register enters in his book the names, qualifications, character, and other particulars, of every member when admitted: and the
Treasurer collects voluntary contributions* * These contributions chiefly consist of school tickets of reward, bearing a nominal value, which the teacher receives for cash, and places to the credit of the class. These funds, with the consent of the teacher, are disposed of by the class in purchasing books for the library, &c.
of the members at every stated meeting. On the admission of a new member, he is addressed by the Chairman, and received in due form, in presence of the whole school.
* These contributions chiefly consist of school tickets of reward, bearing a nominal value, which the teacher receives for cash, and places to the credit of the class. These funds, with the consent of the teacher, are disposed of by the class in purchasing books for the library, &c.
4. The class appoints a committee at each stated meeting, whose duty it is to take notice of the general deportment of the members when out of school, and to report to the class, if they discover any thing in the conduct of a member immoral, or unbecoming, and the member so reported, is dealt with in such manner as the circumstances of the case may require: such as suspension, expulsion, or otherwise; even reproof by the Chairman has been known to have a very striking effect. Another committee observe the appearance of the members, as it respects cleanliness, and report if occasion require; and a third is called the Health Committee, who, on hearing of the sickness of any member, visit him, and render services of kindness, and report on such subjects every regular meeting.
5. I now subjoin an instance of the good effect of this juvenile tribunal. Some time ago, at a meeting of the class, held then in the back part of the school room, one of the members was observed by the teacher to be in considerable trouble. The rest of the class seated, and the Chairman standing in the attitude of addressing this poor fellow, who it appeared had been doing wrong: the scene being one which interested the teacher, he walked towards the class, and the following dialogue took place:--
6. Teacher. May I be permitted by the Chairman, to ask, what is the cause of the grief which seems to afflict this member of the class? (pointing to the boy in tears.)
Chairman. Yes, Sir--he has been reported by the Standing Committee, as having made use of bad language
out of school; it has been proved against him here, and he has been sentenced by the class, to be by the Chairman reproved in this manner.
7. Teacher. It is a serious sentence, and a still more serious crime which has occasioned it; but I perceive that the offender is in great distress.--Have you gone through with what you intended to say to him?
Chairman. No Sir--I have considerable yet to say to him.
8. Teacher. Shall I request one more indulgence, and that in behalf of poor William? (the name of the offender)--I wish to speak a few words to him.
Chairman. By all means, Sir.
9. Teacher. How is this, William; did you not know that it was very wicked, as well as offensive to your classmates, thus to transgress?
William. O, yes, Sir! (the tears all the while streaming down his cheeks,) I know it was very wrong--but do pray, Sir, please to ask the class to forgive me; I will never be guilty of the crime again--I know I have disgraced myself, and am very sorry--I have done very wrong.--Can't I be forgiven?
10 It appears that this was spoken with so much earnestness, as to affect the whole class, and a readiness to forgive seemed evident in every countenance. The Teacher then turning to the Chairman, asked him if he could with propriety, dispense with saying any thing further to William than to express his forgiveness, on condition of a promise that he will be more careful in future?
11. The Chairman, (a boy of fourteen years of age,) bowed assent; and handing back to the little penitent his medal, of which he had been deprived on conviction of guilt, expressed the forgiveness of the class in a becoming manner. Poor William thanked his teacher for interceding for him, (still in tears,) resumed his seat, and soon appeared greatly relieved.
One of the Trustees.
1. SEVERAL persons of colour, among whom was one about nineteen years old, having been towards the south side of Long-Island on a frolic, were returning home across Hempstead Plains, on the morning of the 3d of 4th month, 1825, when there was a violent snow storm,--and the snow being deep in many places, had drifted so as to make travelling very difficult and tiresome.
2. The youth complaining of cold and fatigue, was helped by his companions some distance, but finding themselves unable to get him along through the snow, which had become very wet and heavy, one of them agreed to stay with him until the other two should seek a conveyance to some shelter. They accordingly left those two, and pursued their way as fast as they could. They were obliged to travel a considerable distance before they could obtain the desired object, and when they returned, the unhappy youth had expired.
1. T. Branagan, in his Essay on Slavery, makes the following remarks:--"To illustrate my assertion, that the Africans, no less than ourselves, are capable of gratitude and resentment, friendship and honour, I give the following well-attested relation:--
2. "Quashi was, from his childhood, brought up in the same family with his master, and was his constant play-mate. As he was a lad of considerable abilities, he rose to be an overseer under his master, when he succeeded to the plantation. Still he retained for his master the tenderness, which, in childhood, he felt for his play-fellow. The respect for his new master was softened by that tender affection, which the remembrance
of their juvenile intimacy still kept alive in his breast.
3. "He had no separate interest of his own; to promote his master's interest, not only while he was present, but when he was absent, was his constant study. Nay, in his master's absence, he redoubled his diligence, that his interest might sustain no injury from it. There was, in short, the most intimate, strong, and seemingly indissoluble union between them, that can subsist between a master and his slave.
4. "His master had discernment to perceive when he was well served, and policy to reward good behaviour. But, unfortunately for his faithful servant, if he conceived a fault committed, he was inexorable. Even when there was only an apparent cause of suspicion, he was too apt to allow prejudice to usurp the place of proof. Something happened on the plantation, which Quashi could not explain so as to clear himself to the satisfaction of his master, and was threatened with the shameful, as well as painful punishment of the cart-whip; and he knew his master too well to doubt of the execution of his threatning.
5. "It is well known in the West Indies, that a negro who has grown to manhood without undergoing the punishment of the cart-whip, is apt to feel a pride in the smoothness of his skin; and is at greater pains to escape the lash from this, than, perhaps, from any other consideration.
6. "It is not uncommon for a slave, when he is flogged, or threatened with it, for what he reckons no fault, or if any, a very trifling one, to stab himself. Such is the sense of honour, which some of them entertain, that, rather than be disgraced, they would chose to die.
7. "Dreading this mortal wound to his honour, Quashi secretly withdrew from his master. It is not unusual for slaves, when they are afraid of punishment, to apply to some friend of their master's to intercede for them. Such mediation a humane master readily accepts in the case of some trifling offence.
8. "Of this custom, Quashi intended to avail himself. To save the glossy honours of his skin, he resolved to hide himself, until he should find an opportunity of a friend to advocate his cause. He lurked among his master's negro huts, and his fellow-slaves had too great a regard for him, to discover to his master the place of his retreat. Indeed, it is almost impossible to prevail with one slave, in any such case, to inform against another.
9. "It happened, that at this time his master's nephew became of age, and, for the celebration of the event, a feast was to be made. This opportunity Quashi determined to improve; hoping, that amidst the good humour and festivities of the day, he might be able, through the intervention of an advocate, to obtain the reconciliation of his master.
10. "But most unhappily, before he could execute his design, perhaps at the very time he was setting out to solicit the aid of a mediator, his master happened to be walking in the fields, and discovered him. Quashi the moment he was discovered, ran off; and his master pursued him, but just as his master stretched out his hand to lay hold of him, he struck his foot against a stone or clod, and fell.
11. "They fell together, and both being stout men, struggled hard for the mastery. After a severe conflict, in which each had been several times uppermost, Quashi seated himself on his master's breast, now panting and almost out of breath, and with his weight and one of his hands, kept him so fast, that he could not move.
12. "He then drew out a sharp knife, and, while the other lay in awful suspense and agitation, he accosted him thus:--'Master, I was bred up with you from my infancy; I was your play-mate while you and I were boys; I have loved you as myself; your interest has been my daily care; I am innocent of the fault of which you suspect me. Had I been guilty, my attachment to you, might have pleaded for me. Yet you have condemned me to a punishment, of which, were
it inflicted, I ever must bear the disgraceful marks. In this way only can I avoid them.' Uttering these words, he drew the knife, with all his strength, across his own throat, and fell down dead, on his master, bathing him in his blood."
13. Another instance of arbitrary power in the slave-holder he mentions being a witness to, in Grenada:--"A sucking infant was, with more than brutal barbarity, forced from its mother's breast, to return no more to her, and because she struggled to keep it, which natural affection irresistably prompted her to do, she was flogged with great severity!"
1. "MY son, we know not how long Heaven will grant to us the enjoyment of that precious gem, which we possess in thee; but however short the period endeavour to live exactly; praying God continually to assist thee. He created thee; thou art his property. He is thy Father, and loves thee still more than I do: repose in him thy thoughts, and day and night direct thy sighs to him. Reverence and salute thy elders, and hold no one in contempt. To the poor and distressed be not dumb, but rather use words of comfort. Honour all persons, particularly thy parents, to whom thou owest obedience, respect, and service.
2. "Mock not, my son, the aged or the imperfect. Scorn not him whom thou seest fall into some folly or transgression, nor make him reproaches; but restrain thyself, and beware, lest thou fall into the same error which offends thee in another. Go not where thou art not called, nor interfere in that which does not concern thee. Endeavour to manifest thy good breeding in all thy words and actions.
3. "In conversation do not lay thy hands upon another, nor speak too much, nor interrupt or disturb another's discourse. When any one is discoursing with
thee, hear him attentively, and hold thyself in an easy attitude, neither playing with thy feet, nor putting thy mantle to thy mouth, nor spitting too often, nor looking about here and there, nor rising up frequently, if thou art sitting; for such actions are indications of levity and low breeding."
4 He proceeds to mention several vices, which are to be particularly avoided; and concludes with--"Steal not, nor give thyself to gaming; otherwise thou wilt be a disgrace to thy parents, whom thou oughtest to honour for the education they have given thee. If thou wilt be virtuous, thy example will put the wicked to shame. No more my son: enough has been said in discharge of the duties of a father. With these counsels I wish to fortify thy mind. Refuse them not, nor act in contradiction to them, for in them thy life, and all thy happiness depend."
[Taken from the New-York Observer, of 1st month 21st, 1826.]
1. THE following interesting circumstance, was first brought to light by a young lady of this city. On her weekly visit from the Bible Association, to which she belongs, she chanced to step into a low cellar, where she found a coloured woman far gone in the consumption, with her aged husband sitting by her bed-side, and another coloured woman, about the age of forty, acting in the capacity of nurse and servant. The young lady told them her business.
2. When the sick woman heard that she was on an errand of mercy, her withered and sickly countenance assumed for a moment the glow and brightness of youth. After expressing a steadfast hope of salvation through the merits of a crucified Saviour, she gave the following
epitome of her life: But a few years ago, she was a slave in New-Orleans; by industry and economy, she and her husband were enabled to purchase their freedom; and in the course of two or three years, to lay up about four hundred dollars.
3 Sitting in the door of her cottage one morning, she heard that a number of slaves were to be sold at auction that day. She determined to go and see the sale, and, if possible, buy one of them. She said to herself, " I have so much money, and if I can make it the instrument of redeeming one of my fellow beings from slavery, then I can say to my soul, " depart in peace.' " She went, and purchased one for two hundred and fifty dollars. " But now," said she, " I must place her under the sound of the Gospel." She took passage for herself, her husband, and her liberated friend, for this city, where they arrived about six months ago.
4. When they came ashore, " Now," said she, " you are in a free state, where the privileges of the Gospel are enjoyed; all that I ask for my kindness to you, is, that you strive to make your peace with God. If you live with me, and with me work for your support, I shall be rejoiced; you are at liberty to do as you please." She accepted of her invitation--acts as her nurse--and is now rejoicing in the mercy of God. Oh! let us now cease eulogising Howards and Wilberforces, and other great men of the earth, who have contributed of their abundance, for the emancipation of the wretched. Here is an aged, illiterate, degraded daughter of Africa, who gave her all to redeem one soul. Let us go and do likewise.
[From the same, of 3d month (March) 4, 1826.]
1. In our paper of the 21st of January, we inserted a communication from a correspondent, giving an account
of an aged coloured woman, who emigrated with her husband from New-Orleans to this city last summer, bringing with her another coloured woman, whom she had rescued from slavery at the expense of her little all. The object of these poor people in coming to New-York, was simply to enjoy the privileges of the Gospel without interruption. A benevolent gentleman of our acquaintance, whose feelings were much interested in the account which we published, and who has since repeatedly visited this interesting family, has put into our hands the following particulars of their history for publication. It will be perceived, that they differ in some unimportant points from the account of our former correspondent. The name of the husband is Reuben, that of his wife, Betsey, and that of their companion, Fanny.
2. " Reuben Madison, the husband, was born in Virginia, near Port Royal, about the year 1781. His parents, and all his connexions in this country, were slaves. His father died when he was about seven years old. His mother is now living in Kentucky, enjoying freedom in her old age, through the filial regard of Reuben, who purchased her liberty for seventy dollars. She is seriously disposed, but not a professor of religion. He has now eight brothers and sisters living in Frankfort, Franklin county, Kentucky, all slaves, and all, excepting one, members of a Baptist church in that place.
3. " About a year after his conversion, Reuben was married to a slave, who had been kidnapped in Maryland, and sold to a planter in his neighbourhood. She was also hopefully pious. While they lived together, she became the mother of two children; but about four years after their marriage, she and one of the children, aged eight months, were sold without his knowledge, and transported to a distant Spanish territory, and with so much secrecy, that he had no opportunity even to bid her a last farewell. 'This,' said he, 'was the severest trial of my life, a sense of sin only excepted. I mourned and cried, and would not be comforted.
4. "After several months, however, the hope of meeting her and my children again in the kingdom of God, when we should never be separated, together with a promise from my master that I should at some future time go and see her, in some measure allayed my grief, and permitted me to enjoy the consolations of religion."--The other child is now a slave in Kentucky, though the father has often endeavoured in vain to purchase his freedom.
5. "About six years since, having hired his time of his master for five years previous, at 120 dollars a year, Reuben had succeeded, by trafficing in rags, and in other ways, in collecting a sum sufficient for the purchase of his own freedom, for which he paid 700 dollars, and not only so, but he was enabled, with his surplus earnings, to build him a brick house, and to provide it with convenient accommodations. By the dishonesty of his former master, however, all was taken from him.
6. "Thus stripped of his property, he left Kentucky and went to New-Orleans, that he might learn something from his wife, and if possible, find and redeem her; but he only succeeded in gaining the painful intelligence that she was dead. He there formed an acquaintance with his present wife, whose former name was Betsey Bond, and they were soon married.--The circumstances of her life are briefly these:--
7. "Betsey was born a slave, near Hobb's Hole, Essex County, Virginia, about 1763, was married to a slave at about the age of twenty years. By him she had three children, one of which, together with her husband, died a few years after their marriage. Soon after their death, she was led to reflect on her lost state as a sinner, and after about seven months of deep anxiety, was enabled, as she trusts, to resign herself into the hands of her Saviour, and experience those consolations which he deigns to grant to the broken-hearted penitent.
8. "She gained the confidence and attachment of
her mistress, who treated her with much kindness, and was married to a pious servant of the family, where she remained about nine years. At the close of this period, a planter from the vicinity of Natches coming to Alexandria, in Virginia, where she then lived, for slaves, she was sold, and carried with eight others to his plantation, leaving her husband behind.
9. "Her new master treated her with great severity, and she was compelled to labour almost incessantly every day of the week, Sabbath not excepted, to save herself from the lash. With this man she lived nineteen years, and he then died, and left his slaves, by will, to another planter, who also dying soon after, she was again sold, and transported to New-Orleans, where she arrived about the year 1812.
10. "At the end of two years this master also died, and when his slaves were about to be sold, Betsey succeeded with some difficulty in hiring her time, and in a little more than a year, by washing and other labour, she acquired sufficient property to purchase her freedom, for which she paid 250 dollars. Her youngest son, with his wife being also slaves in New-Orleans, she hoped by her industry and economy to obtain money sufficient to purchase them also; but their master refused to part with them.
11. "About six years ago, a large number of slaves were brought to New-Orleans from Virginia, and were about to be offered for sale, and Fanny was among the number. Having become accidentally acquainted with her, previous to the sale, and finding her a sister in Christ, Betsey's feelings were deeply interested, and she resolved to purchase her, and to treat her not as a slave, but as a child and companion.
12. "This determination she communicated to Fanny, and with the aid of a gentleman she succeeded in accomplishing her object. The price was 250 dollars. She paid 200, her all, and obtained a short credit for the remainder. Soon after this, her present husband coming to New-Orleans, as before stated, they
were married, and the payment for Fanny was then completed.
13. "By their united industry, they were soon able to build a comfortable house, in which they set apart a room for religious purposes. Here they assembled with others every Sabbath for the worship of God. But being constantly exposed to be disturbed in their worship, they felt a great desire to go to a free State, where they might enjoy religious privileges unmolested; where they could unite with Christian friends in social prayer and conversation, without a soldier with a drawn sword stationed at their door.
14. "They fixed upon New-York as the desired asylum; and having arranged their concerns, rented their house, and collected their effects, they engaged and paid their passage, which was seventy dollars, and sailed from New Orleans about the 12th of July, 1825, with pleasing anticipations for a land of freedom and religious privileges.
15. "They suffered much on the voyage through the cruelty of the captain;* * The name of this wretch is Anderson, and the vessel which he commanded at this time was the brig Russel. We are happy to learn that a benevolent gentleman, who became accidentally acquainted with his cruelty, prosecuted him soon after his arrival, in behalf of the injured family, and received for them damages to the amount of forty dollars. Editor N. Y. Ols.]
Obs being exposed without shelter during the whole of the passage, either on deck or in the long boat. In consequence of this exposure, both of the women were taken sick, and in this condition they arrived at New-York, and were landed on the wharf in a land of strangers, their money almost expended, and none to commisserate their sufferings.
* The name of this wretch is Anderson, and the vessel which he commanded at this time was the brig Russel. We are happy to learn that a benevolent gentleman, who became accidentally acquainted with his cruelty, prosecuted him soon after his arrival, in behalf of the injured family, and received for them damages to the amount of forty dollars. Editor N. Y. Ols.]
16. "After a few days, however, Reuben succeeded in obtaining a miserable cellar in Chapel-street, at sixty dollars annual rent, where he remained until quite recently, supporting the family in their sickness, by his labour as a shoemaker, and by the sale of some of his effects.
17. "On his arrival at this port, his first act was, to grant entire freedom to Fanny, giving her liberty to live with him, or to go where she pleased. She chose to remain with him, and now assists in the support of the family by washing and other labour, and nurses her mistress who is evidently declining with the consumption, occasioned doubtless by the severity of her treatment on the passage from New-Orleans.
18. "Not being able to pay their rent in advance, owing to their sickness and other expenses, their landlord not long since compelled them to quit their residence; and they have since been obliged to put up with still more miserable accommodations in a cellar in Elm-street, where they now reside.
19. "They appear to put their trust and confidence in God, and express their entire belief that all their trials are designed for their good. They seem to be one in sentiment and feeling, and to manifest a spirituality of mind rarely to be found. Every little attention is most gratefully received, and the best of blessings are implored on him who bestows it.
20. "With some assistance from the benevolent, and with what they may receive from New-Orleans for rents, it is believed they may be provided with a comfortable house, and be introduced to those privileges which they so ardently desire. No one of the family can read, though they are all desirous to learn, and from a little attention which friends have given them, it appears that they may be taught without difficulty."
21. We trust that the mere recital of these facts will be sufficient to awaken the sympathy of our Christian friends, and to induce immediate measures for the relief of the benevolent sufferers. A note from our correspondent informs us that within a few days the health of the sick woman has rapidly declined, owing doubtless to her miserable accommodations, and that she is now apparently in the last stages of the consumption.
22. In a few weeks at farthest, her spirit will ascend to that world where sorrow and sighing will cease, and
all tears be forever wiped from her eyes. We hope that the little remnant of her days on earth will be made happy, and that when she appears at the bar of the Great Judge, she will not have to speak of white men only in the language of accusation.
23. It is an affecting thought that the wrongs of this poor woman, which commenced at her birth, and were inflicted without interruption during the long years of slavery, still followed her on her passage to the land of freedom, and have been finally consummated in this city, the city of her hopes, her fancied asylum from the oppressor.
1. The period fixed by law for the termination of Slavery in the State of New-York, is the 4th of July, 1827. According to the census of 1820, there were 20,279 free persons of colour, and 10,092 slaves in the state; making in all 30,371.
2. "Say that, in future, Negroes shall be blest:
Rank'd e'en as men, and man's just rights enjoy;
Be neither sold nor purchas'd, nor oppress'd;
No griefs shall wither, and no stripes destroy."
Since the half-sheet, containing the interesting biography of Billy and Jenny, page 73, was printed off, information was received of the death of Billy. He died at Scarsdale, West-Chester County, 4th of 3d month, 1826, after a few days' illness aged about 87 years; and was decently interred by the side of JENNY, the 6th of the same month.
The following is a Valedictory Address, composed and spoken at an Annual
Examination, by Andrew R. Smith, aged 14 years, on his and others
leaving the New-York African Free-School, April, 1822.
RESPECTED PATRONS AND FRIENDS,--
1. WITH much diffidence, I rise to address you on a subject which is of great importance, both to myself and to those of my fellow-schoolmates, who are about to leave this school. I feel it my duty, on this occasion, to return my humble thanks to those gentlemen who have so long been and still are, the supporters of this valuable institution. I consider myself under many and great obligations to you; and my ardent desire and wishes are, that you may flourish and prosper in this benevolent undertaking.
2. To you, my much respected Teacher, I am greatly indebted. For your kind attention to me, while under your care, I most sincerely and humbly thank you. When I first became your pupil, I was ignorant of letters, and learnt my A, B, C, by means of writing in the sand: since that time, I have passed regularly through every class in the school, and have had the honour of filling almost every office in the same; and more than this, down to the present day, I have had the pleasure of enjoying the expressions of approbation of my teacher.
3. My books and exercises, exhibited before you this day, will, I doubt not, be regarded by you, gentlemen, who are Trustees of this school, as testimonials in my favour, that your labour, and that of my preceptor, have not been bestowed upon me in vain.
4. As the various exercises of the day have detained you some time, it requires me to be short. In conclusion, let me remind you, my fellow-schoolmates, who are about to leave with me, that we are now entering into a wide field, and that we must be industrious and upright to make respectable members of society; and to be an honour to our parents, we must make such use of our learning, as will prove a blessing to ourselves, and to the community with which Providence now calls us to mix.
1. 'T was in the glad season of spring,
Asleep at the dawn of the day,
I dream'd what I cannot but sing,
So pleasant it seem'd as I lay.
I dream'd that on ocean afloat,
Far hence to the westward I sail'd,
While the billows high lifted the boat,
The fresh blowing breeze never fail'd.
2. In the steerage a woman I saw,
Such at least was the form that she wore,
Whose beauty impress'd me with awe,
Never taught me by woman before.
She sat, and a shield at her side,
Shed light like a sun on the waves,
And smiling divinely, she cry'd--
"I go to make freemen of Slaves."
4. Then raising her voice to a strain,
The sweetest that ear ever heard,
She sung of the Salve's broken chains,
Wherever her glory appear'd.
Some clouds, which had over us hung,
Fled, chas'd by her melody clear,
And methought, white she liberty sung,
'Twas liberty only to hear.
4. Thus swiftly dividing the flood,
To a slave-cultur'd island we came,
Where a demon her enemy stood,
Oppression his terrible name.
In his hand, as a sign of his sway,
A scourge hung with lashes he bore,
And stood looking out for his prey,
From Afric's sorrowful shore.
5. But soon as approaching the land,
That goddess-like woman he view'd,
The scourge he let fall from his hand,
With blood of his subjects imbued.
I saw him both sicken and die,
And the moment the monster expir'd,
Heard shouts that ascended the sky,
From thousands with rapture inspir'd.
6. Awaking, how could I but muse,
At what such a dream should betide?
But soon my ear caught the glad news,
Which serv'd my weak thought for a guide;
That Britannia, renown'd o'er the waves,
For the hatred she ever has shown
To the black-sceptred rulers of slaves,
Resolves to have none of her own.
1. 'Tis not the loud, obstreperous grief,
That rudely clamours for relief--
'Tis not the querulous lament,
In which impatience seeks a vent--
'Tis not the soft, pathetic style,
Which aims our pity to beguile;
That can to truth's keen eye impart
The "real sorrows" of the heart!
2. No! 'tis the tear in secret shed
Upon the starving infant's head;
The sigh, that would not be repress'd,
Breath'd on the faithful partner's breast!
The bursting heart, the imploring eye,
To Heav'n uprais'd in agony,
With starts of desultory prayer,
While hope is quenching in despair;
The throbbing temple's burning pain,
While phrenzy's fiend usurps the brain,
These are the traits, no art can borrow,
Of genuine suffering and sorrow!
N. Y. Spectator.
In 1804, A. A. when travelling in Virginia, stopped with her companions in the woods to refresh themselves and horses. After taking her portion, and drinking some water from a brook, she took a solitary walk, when a circumstance occurred which gave rise to the following reflections:--
1. PENSIVE, lonely, while I wander'd,
Dark Virginia's woods among;
Soon I heard the thrilling locust,
Stood and listen'd to its song.
2. When the sound of human footsteps,
Soft approaching caught my ear,
Quick I started, looked around me,
Lo! a black boy stood so near.
3. He from cold could ne'er be shelter'd,
By his garments ragg'd and bare,
Yet his looks bespoke good nature,
With a smile as wild as air.
4. And is this the land of Freedom?
Soon my throbbing heart rejoin'd,
While the poor afflicted Negroes
Still in fetters hard they bind.
5. Sad disgrace to human nature,
And must England bear a part?
Cast away the shameful traffic,
Prove thou hast a feeling heart;
6. That arous'd by thy example,
Columbia too may break the chain,
Nor the mournful sons of Afric,
Longer curse your lust of gain.
EZRA DARRY, a man of amiable character and manners, was a member of Congress from New-Jersey, and died at Washington in the year 1809. The following lines were found in his pocket after his death.
1. THE winds sweeping over the hills,
With winter incessantly blow;
Ice binds up the rivers and rills,
Earth whitens herself with the snow.
2. The mildness of Summer and Spring;
And Autumn's rich foliage are gone;
The birds have forgotten to sing,
The flocks have deserted the lawn.
3. Far, far, from the place of my birth,
The plain where my morning was past,
That beautiful section of earth,
Where fortune my residence cast.
4. From friends, and from home far away,
With the half of myself left behind,
My heart beats in time while I say,
The season accords with my mind.
5. By fashion, or folly, or fame,
Or some other phantom assail'd,
Perhaps in pursuit of a name,
Though thousands far better have fail'd;
6. I laid by my team, and my plough,
Forsook the sweet cottage of love,
And came, before great men to bow,
A clod-hopper statesman to prove.
7. Surrounded by men of all kinds,
All colours the earth can produce,
With all sorts of bodies and minds,
And fitted for all sorts of use.
8. Compell'd in some squabbles to share,
To bustle along with the rest,
My thoughts are all ruffled with care,
And heaviness presses my breast.
9. I sigh for that silent repose,
Which home, and home only, provides;
Those scenes unincumber'd with woes,
Where soothing contentment presides;
10. Where peace builds her nest with delight,
Domestic endearments appear,
Where hearts can in rapture unite,
And happiness winds off the year.
11. Alas! am I here to remain,
And count the dull minutes away,
'Till winter shall wear out his reign,
And nature begin to look gay;
12. 'Till the foliage shall cover the trees,
The blue bird be seen on the wing;
'Till fragrance shall float on the breeze,
And perhaps 'till the whip-poor-will sing?
13. Then hasten your tardy career,
Ye moments; forget your delay!
Let Spring in her verdure appear,
Bring forward the beauties of May.
14. Let me catch the first note of the grove,
Take the earliest zephyr that blows,
To fly to the bosom of love,
And rest in extatic repose.
1. THE man in life, wherever placed,
Hath happiness in store,
Who walks not in the wicked's way,
Nor learns their guilty lore.
2. Nor from the seat of scornful pride,
Casts forth his eyes abroad,
But with humility and awe,
Still walks before his God.
3. That man shall flourish like the trees,
Which by the streamlets grow;
The fruitful top is spread on high,
And firm the roots below.
4. But he whose blossom buds in guilt,
Shall to the ground be cast,
And like the rootless stubble tost,
Before the sweeping blast.
5. For why? that God the good adore,
Hath given them peace and rest,
But hath decreed that wicked men
Shall ne'er be truly blest.
1. When Jesus dwelt in mortal clay,
What were his works from day to day,
But miracles of power and grace,
That wrought salvation for our race?
2. Help us, O Lord, to keep in view
Thy precepts; and thy steps pursue--
Let alms bestow'd--let kindness done,
Be witnessed by each rolling sun.
3. That man may be yet never lives,
Who much receives, but nothing gives--
Whom none can love--whom none can thank,
Creation's blot--creation's blank.
4. But he who marks, from day to day,
With virtuous acts his shining way,
Treads the same path his Saviour trod--
The path to glory and to God.
1. Hark! 'tis a groan from Afric's ravaged shore,
Borne o'er the Atlantic's wave on fancy's wings,
Its sound a tear of sympathy implores,
And on the gale its sullen sadness flings.
2. Yes, 'tis the groan of innocence oppress'd,
Beneath vile avarice's inhuman sway;
'Tis nature groaning from her inmost breast,
With eyes uplifted to the God of Day.
3. O ye, whose generous breasts can weeping bend
O'er the pale victim of despair and pain,
Your tears with mine in feeling concert blend,
And mourn with me, man's cruelty to man!
4. With me to Afric's desolated coasts,
To the sad shores of Gambia repair:
There see the lives of inoffensive hosts,
Crush'd in the jaws of avarice-prompted war.--
5. See death and ruin shroud the blood-stain'd plain,
Subjecting all to their malignant sway;
While uncontroul'd, fell desolation reigns,
And blood and rapine mark their gloomy way.
6. O, Heaven! can mankind so resign their hearts
To the foul clench of lucrative desire;
As thus for gold to use the vilest arts,
And feed with human blood the insatiate fire?--
7. While thus with gore sad Afric's shore they lave,
Involving all in one ensanguin'd gloom,--
Heaven sheds a tear on martyr'd mercy's grave,
And weeping angels hover round the tomb.
1. Night is the time for rest--
How sweet, when labours close,
To gather round an aching breast
The curtain of repose:
Stretch our tir'd limbs, and lay the head
Upon our own delightful bed!
2. Night is the time for dreams;
The gay romance of life,
When truth that is, and truth that seems,
Blend in fantastic strife:
Ah! visions less beguiling far,
Than waking dreams by daylight are.
3. Night is the time for toil--
To plough the classic field,
Intent to find the buried spoil
Its wealthy furrows yield;
Till all is ours that sages thought,
That poets sung, or heroes wrought.
4. Night is the time to weep--
To wet with unseen tears
Those graves of memory, where sleep
The joys of other years:
Hopes that were angels in their birth,
But perish'd young, like things of earth.
5. Night is the time to watch,
On ocean's dark expanse;
To hail the Pleiades, or catch
The full moon's earliest glance:--
That bring into the home-sick mind,
All we have lov'd and left behind.
6. Night is the time for care--
Brooding on hours mispent,
To see the spectre of despair
Come to his lonely tent.
Like Brutus, midst his slumbering host,
Startled by Cæsar's stalwart ghost.
7. Night is the time to muse;
Then from the eye the soul
Takes flight, and with expanding views,
Beyond the starry pole,
Descries athwart the abyss of night
The dawn of uncreated light.
8. Night is the time to pray--
Our Saviour oft withdrew
To desert mountains far away--
So will his followers do:
Steal from the throng to haunts untrod,
And hold communion with their God.
9. Night is the time for death--
When all around is peace;
Calmly to yield the weary breath,
From sin and suffering cease--
Think of heaven's bliss--and give the sign
To parting bliss--such death be mine.
[From the same.]
1. At every moment, every breath,
Life trembles on the brink of death;
A taper's flame that upwards turns,
While downward to the dust it burns.
2. A moment ushered us to birth,
Heirs of the common wealth of earth;
Moment by moment, years are past,
And one, ere long, will be our last.
3. 'Twixt that which struck us into light,
And that which shall eclipse in night;
There is a point no eye can see,
Yet on it hangs eternity.
4. God for our portion then we choose,
Or him forever then refuse--
Where is that point of woe or bliss?
Gone by? To come?--No, here; 'tis this.
5. This is the moment, which begins--
Now let us cast away our sins:
This is the moment, as it ends,
Our pain or paradise depends.
6. The past is fled. the future not;
The present is our utmost lot;
O God! henceforth our hearts incline
To seek no other way but thine.
Verses written by the late DIVIE BETHUNE, after returning from Ch where a collection had been made for the poor, Nov. 29th, 1807.
1. WHY are our hearts so prone to hoard
The blessings lent us by the Lord?
Why can we see a brother feel
The pangs of want, yet clothe in steel.
2. The God who gives, adds this command,
"To thy poor brother stretch thy hand;"
But nature, fall'n, deprav'd, and blind
For self shuts out the human kind.
3. The widow's and the orphan's tear
God sees: their cry assails his ear,
And he commands us from on high
To wipe that tear, and soothe that sigh.
4. And can the Lord's commandment fail?
Shall not his powerful voice prevail?
Yield, yield thy soul to generous bliss,
"The Lord can give thee more than this."
5. Yea ev'n on earth, he'll prove his power
And as thou giv'st enlarge thy store;
And with the grace he will impart,
Pour joy on thy expanding heart.
6. That God who says, "my will be done"
Gave thee poor soul, his only son;
Receive his gift, on him believe,
Thou poor one sav'd, His poor relieve,
7. Earth's miser! though thy pile be high,
'Twill soon be lost, for thou must die;
The house, as narrow as thy heart,
Shuts out this wealth, thy better part.
8. The liberal soul the poor who tends,
And to their dwellings comfort sends,
When he ascends the op'ning sky,
Finds all his wealth increased on high.
The following lines taken from an English publication, are supposed to be written by an African prince who arrived in England some years ago, and on being asked what he had given for his watch, replied, "What I shall never be able to recall."
1. When avarice enslaves the mind,
And selfish views alone bear sway,
Man turns a savage to his kind,
And blood and rapine mark his way;
Alas! for this poor simple toy
I sold a blooming Negro boy.
* Slave Traders.
2. His father's hope, his mother's pride
Tho' black, yet comely to their view;
I tore him helpless from their side,
And gave him to a ruffian crew:
that Afric's coast annoy
I sold the charming Negro boy.
* Slave Traders.
3. From country, friends, and parents torn,
His tender limbs in chains confined,
I saw him o'er the billows borne,
And mark'd his agony of mind;
But still, to gain this simple toy
I gave away the Negro boy.
4. In Isles that deck the western wave,
I doomed the hopeless youth to dwell;
A poor, forlorn, insulted slave,
A beast that Christians buy and sell;
And in their cruel tasks employ
The much-enduring Negro boy.
5. His wretched parents long shall mourn,
Shall long explore the distant main,
In hopes to see the youth return;
But all their hopes and sighs are vain.
They never will the sight enjoy,
Of their lamented Negro boy.
6. Beneath a tyrant's harsh command,
He wears away his youthful prime,
Far distant from his native land,
A stranger in a foreign clime:
No pleasing thoughts his mind employ,
A poor dejected Negro boy.
7. But He who "walks upon the wind,"
Whose voice in thunder's heard on high,
Who doth the raging tempest bind,
Or wing the lightning through the sky,
In His own time will soon destroy
The oppressors of the Negro boy.
1. 'T WAS a keen frosty morning, and the snow heavily falling
When a child of misfortune was thus sadly calling:--
"Sweep, sweep--I am cold and the snow very deep,
O, pray, take compassion on a poor little sweep!
Sweep, chimney sweep."
2. The tears down his cheeks in large drops were fast rolling
Unnotic'd, unpitied, by those by him strolling,
Who frequently warn'd him at distance to keep,
While he cried--"take compassion on poor little sweep!
Sweep chimney sweep."
3. In vain he implor'd passing strangers for pity,
This smil'd at his plaint, and that banter'd his ditty:
Humanity's offspring as yet lay asleep.
Nor heard the sad wailings of poor little sweep!
"Sweep, chimney sweep."
4. At the step of a door, half froze, and dejected,
He sat down and griev'd, to be shunn'd and neglected;
When a kind-hearted damsel by chance saw him weep,
And resolv'd to befriend him, the poor little sweep!
"Sweep, chimney sweep."
5. Unmindful of sneer to a neighbour she led him,
Warm'd his limbs by the fire and tenderly fed him:
And, on, what delight did this fair maiden reap,
When she found a lost brother, in the poor little sweep!
"Sweep, chimney sweep."
6. With rapture she gaz'd on each black sooty feature,
And hugg'd to her bosom the foul smelling creature:
Who, sav'd by a sister, no longer need creep
Through lanes, courts, and alleys a poor little sweep!
"Sweep, chimney sweep."
1. The poor man came home, 'twas a cot on the moor,
And his children to welcome him stood at the door;
Ah, Papa, dear Papa! my sister and I
Ate nothing to day, but I told her by and by,
When the sun was gone down and one hardly could see,
We should fully be feasted with mamma and thee.
As he said it, Jack seiz'd on the father with joy,
Who placed on his knee the affectionate boy;
And two or three kisses with fervour impress'd,
As his child with a heart full of grief he address'd;
Dear Jack, when I went in the morning away,
I thought to bring something at closing of day;
But I wrought in the snow and the keen biting blast,
And have brought nothing home but a brown crust at last.
2. Here Jack go divide it with Susan, and share
All your parents, a pitiful portion can spare.
He took it, and offered his father a part.
But when he said, No Jack, it griev'd him at heart;
Then he offered the piece to his mother, but she
Said, 'tis hardly enough for dear Susan and thee.
He threw down the crust, put his hand to his eye,
And burst into tears, but could hardly tell why.
And Susan rejoined, 'twould be ten times more sweet,
If her parents would share it and with them would eat.
Then they smiled and they wept and divided their store.
A crust of brown bread was a supper for four.
In the fulness of sorrow they found a relief,
For Susan and Jack were the joy of their grief.
1. How often I think on the scenes of my childhood,
The meadows and fields where the wild flowers grew;
The orchards, the pond, the glade, and the wildwood,
And the social delights that my infancy knew.
2. The dew-spangled lawn, and the green grassy meadow,
The copse where the birds warbled sweetly their lay;
Where oft in the wide-spreading trees' ample shadow,
We felt the sea breeze in the heat of the day.
3. I remember the road, with its winding and turning,
The green living hedgerow that skirted the way;
The field it enclos'd where the brick-kiln was burning;
And the pits where they dug up the smooth yellow clay.
4. And I have not forgot when a storm was a coming,
The hoarse rumbling noise of the waves of the sea:
The old hollow log where the partridge was drumming,
And the woodpecker pecking the hollow oak tree.
5. I remember the old fashion'd mansion we liv'd in,
With the bay and the beach, and the ocean in view:
The swamp and the brake where the singing birds built in.
And the tree by the lane where the thorn apples grew.
6. In that old fashion'd house, in this lov'd situation,
With small panes of glass, and the clean oaken floors:
Content was our lot, and no fear of invasion,
Not a bar, nor a lock, nor a bolt to the doors.
7. But what was the cause of that tranquil enjoyment?
Not the house, nor the fields, nor the prospects so rare;
Not the orchards, nor pond, nor rural employment,
But the dearly lov'd friends of my bosom were there.
8. And the day that we parted, the heart-rending anguish
No pen can describe, neither pencil pourtray;
To me all the beauties around seemed to languish,
And all the gay scenes quickly faded away.
9. Those transient enjoyments how fair and how fickle,
They spring up and bloom like the flowers in May;
But trouble and care thrust in the sharp sickle
They're cut down, and wither, and die in a day.
10. But the joys of the faithful are ever increasing,
Their source is celestial, their Author divine;
In the truth they rejoice, and their prospects are pleasing,
In glory and beauty for ever to shine.
1. My chaise the village Inn did gain,
Just as the setting sun's last ray
Tipt with refulgent gold the vane
Of the old church across the way.
2. Across the way I silent sped
The time till supper to beguile
In moralizing o'er the dead,
That moulder'd round the ancient pile.
3. There many a humble green grave shew'd
Where want and pain and toil did rest;
And many a flatt'ring stone I view'd,
O'er those who once had wealth possess'd.
4. A faded beach its shadow brown
Threw o'er a grave where sorrow slept:
On which, though scarce with grass o'er grown,
Two ragged children sat and wept.
5. A piece of bread between them lay,
Which neither seem'd inclin'd to take:
And yet they look'd so much a prey
To want; it made my heart to ache.
6. My little children, let me know
Why you in such distress appear;
And why you wasteful from you throw
That bread which many a heart would cheer?
7. The little boy, in accents sweet,
Replied, whilst tears each other chas'd,
"Lady, we've not enough to eat,
"And if we had, we would not waste.
8. "But sister Mary's naughty grown,
"And will not eat, whate'er I say,
"Though sure I am the bread's her own,
"And she has tasted none to day."
9. "Indeed (the wan starv'd MARY said)
"Till HENRY eats I'll eat no more;
"For yesterday I got some bread;
"He's had none since the day before."
10. My heart did swell, my bosom heave;
I felt as though deprived of speech--
I silent sat upon the grave,
And press'd a clay-cold hand of each.
11. With looks that told a tale of woe,
With looks that spoke a grateful heart,
The shiv'ring boy did nearer draw,
And thus their tale of woe impart--
12. "Before my father went away,
"Entic'd by bad men o'er the sea,
"Sister and I did nought but play--
"We liv'd beside yon great ash tree.
13. "And then poor mother did so cry,
"And look'd so chang'd, I cannot tell;
"She told us that she soon should die,
"And bade us love each other well.
14. "She said that when the war is o'er,
"Perhaps we might our father see;
But if we never saw him more,
"That God our father then would be.
15. "She kiss'd us both, and then she died,
"And we no more a mother have--
"Here many a day we sat and cried
"Together on poor mother's grave.
16. "But when our father came not here,
"I thought if we could find the sea,
"We should be sure to meet him there,
"And once again might happy be.
17."We hand and hand went many a mile,
"And ask'd our way of all we met,
"And some did sigh, and some did smile,
"And we of some did victuals get.
18. "But when we reach'd the sea, and found,
"'Twas one great water round us spread,
"We thought that father must be drown'd,
"And cried and wish'd us both were dead.
19. "So we return'd to mother's grave,
"And only long with her to be!
"For Goody, when this bread she gave,
"Said father died beyond the sea.
20. "Then since no parents have we here,
"We'll go and seek for God around,
"Lady, pray can you tell us where
"That God, our Father, may be found?
21. "He lives in Heaven, mother said,
"And Goody says that mother's there;
"So if she thinks we want his aid,
"I think, perhaps, she'll send him here."
22. I clasp'd the prattlers to my breast,
And cried, come both and live with me--
I'll clothe ye, feed ye, give ye rest,
And will a second mother be.
23. And God will be your father still;
'Twas he in mercy sent me here,
To teach you to obey his will,
Your steps to guide, your hearts to cheer.
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