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History & Genealogy


(Previously Published in 1879 with title: The Underground Railroad)
For many years connected with the Anti-Slavery Office in Philadelphia, and Chairman of the Acting
Vigilant Committee of the Philadelphia Branch of the Underground Rail Road.

Illustrated with 70 Fine Engravings by Bensell, Schell and Others,
and Portraits from Photographs from Life.

Thou shalt not deliver unto his master the servant that has escaped from his master unto thee. - Deut. xxiii 16.



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he declared, should never have his property (having no other heir but his niece, except his widow), that the slaves relied on his promise to free them.  Thus in view of the facts referred to, Aaron was led to commit the unpardonable sin of running away with his wife Daffney, who, by the way, looked like a woman fully capable of taking care of herself and children, instead of having then stolen away from her, as though they were pigs.

     JOSEPH VINEY and family- Joseph was 'held to service or labor,"  by Charles Bryant, of Alexandria, VA.  Joseph had very nearly finished paying for himself.  His wife and children were held by Samuel Pattison, Esq., a member of the Methodist Church, "a great big man," "with red eyes, bald heard, drank pretty  freely," and in the language of Joseph, "wouldn't bear nothing."  Two of Joseph's brothers-in-law had been sold by his master.  Against Mrs. Pattison his complaint was, that "she was mean, sneaking, and did not want to give half enough to eat." 
     For the enlightenment of all Christendom, and coming posterity especially, the following advertisement and letter are recorded, with the hope that they will have an important historical value.  The writer was at great pains to obtain these interesting documents, directly after the arrival of the memorable Twenty-Eight; and shortly afterwards furnished to the New York Tribune, in a prudential manner, a brief sketch of these very passengers, including the advertisements, but not the letter.  It was safely laid away for history —

     $2,000 REWARD. - Ran away from the subscriber on Saturday night, the 24th inst, Fourteen Head of Negroes, viz: Four men, two women, one boy and seven children.  Kit is about 35 years of age, five feet six or seven inches high, dark chestnut color, and has a scar on one of his thumbs.  Joe is about 30 years old, very black, his teeth are very white, and is about five feet eight inches high.  Henry is about 22 years old, five feet ten inches high, of dark chestnut color and large front teeth.  Joe is about 20 years old, about five feet six inches high, heavy built and black.  Tom is about 16 years old, about five feet high, light chestnut color.  Susan is about 35 years old, dark chestnut color, and rather stout built; speaks rather slow, and has with her four children, varying from one to seven years of age.  Leah is about 28 years old, about five feet high, dark chestnut color, with three children, two boys and one girl, from one to eight years old.
     I will give $1,000 if taken in the county, $1,500 if taken out of the county and in the State, and $2,000 if taken out of the State; in either case to be lodged in Cambridge (Md.) Jail, so that I can get them again; or I will give a fair proportion of the above reward if any part be secured.           
                                                                   SAMUEL PATTISON,
Near Cambridge, Md.
     October, 26, 1857.

     P. S. —Since writing the above, I have discovered that my negro woman, Sarah Jane, 25 years old, stout built and chestnut color, has also run off.                           S. P


                    CAMBRIDGE, Nov. 16th, 1857.

     L. W. THOMPSON:  - Sir, this morning I received your letter wishing an accurate description of my Negroes which ran away on the 24th of last month and the amt. of reward offered &c &c.  The description is as follows.  Kit is about 35 years old, five feet, six or seven inches high, dark chestnut color and has a scar on one of his thumbs, he has a very

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quick step and walks very straight, and can read and write.  Joe, is about 30 years old, very black and about five feet eight inches high, has a very pleasing appearance, he has a free wife who left with him she is a light molatoo, she has a child not over one year old.  Henry is about 22 years old, five feet, ten inches high, of dark chestnut coller and large front teeth, he stoops a little in his walk and has a downward look.  Joe is about 20 years old, about five feet six inches high, heavy built, and has a grum look and voice due, and black.  Tom is about 16 years old about five feet high light chestnut coller, smart active boy, and swagers in his walk.  Susan is about 35 years old, dark chesnut coller and stout built, speaks rather slow and has with her four children, three boys and one girl - the girl has a thum or finger on her left hand (part of it) cut off, the children are from 9 months to 8 years old.  (the youngest a boy 9 months and the oldest whose name is Lloyd is about 8 years old)  The husband of Susan (Joe Viney) started off with her, he is a slave, belonging to a gentleman in Alexandria D. C. he is about 40 years old and dark chestnut coller rather slender built and about five feet seven or eight inches high, he is also the Father of Henry, Joe and Tom.  A reward of $400. will be given for his apprehension.  Leah is about 28 years old about five feet high dark chestnut coller, with three children.  2 Boys and 1 girl, they are from one to eight years old, the oldest boy is called Adam, Leah is the wife of Kit, the first named man in the list.  Sarah Jane is about 25 years old, stout built and chesnut coller, quick and active in her walk.   Making in all 15 head, men, women and children belonging to me, or 16 head including Joe Viney, the husband of my woman Susan.
       A Reward of $2250, will be given for my negroes if taken out of the State of Maryland and lodged in Cambridge or Baltimore Jail, so that I can get them or a fair proportion of any part of them.  And including Joe Vinney's reward of $2650.00.
At the same time eight other negroes belonging to a neighbor of mine ran off, for which a reward of $1400 00 has been offered for them.
     If you should want any information, witnesses to prove or indentify the negroes, write immediately on to me.  Or if you should need any information with regard to proving the negroes, before I could reach Philadelphia, you can call on Mr. Burroughs at Martin & Smith's store, Market Street, No 308.  Phila and he can refer you to a gentleman who knows the negroes.   Yours &c SAML. PATTISON.

     This letter was in answer to one written in Philadelphia and signed, " L. W. Thompson."  It is not improbable that Mr. Pattison's loss had produced such a high state of mental excitement that he was hardly in a condition for cool reflection, or he would have weighed the matter a little more carefully before exposing himself to the U. G. R. R. agents.  But the letter possesses two commendable features, nevertheless.  It was tolerably well written and prompt.
     Here is a wonderful exhibition of affection for his contented and happy negroes.  Whether Mr. Pattison suspended on suddenly learning that he was minus fifteen head, the writer cannot say.  But that there was a great slave hunt in every direction there is no room to doubt.  Though much more might be said about the parties concerned, it must suffice to add that they came to the Vigilance Committee in a very sad plight—in tattered garments, hungry, sick, and penniless; but they were kindly clothed, fed, doctored, and sent on their way rejoicing.
     DANIEL STANLY, Nat Amby, John Scott, Hannah Peters, Henrietta Dobson, Elizabeth Amby, Josiah Stanly, Caroline Stanly, Daniel Stanly, jr.,

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John Stanly and Miller Stanly (arrival from Cambridge.)  Daniel is about 35, well-made and wide-awake.  Fortunately, in emancipating himself, he also, through great perseverance, secured the freedom of his wife and six children; one child he was compelled to leave behind.  Daniel belonged to Robert Calender, a farmer, and, "except when in a passion," said to be "pretty clever."  However, considering as a father, that it was his "duty to do all  he could" for his children, and that all work and no play makes Jack a dull boy, Daniel felt bound to seek refuge in Canada.  His wife and children were owned by "Samuel Count, an old, bald-headed, bad man," who "had of late years been selling and buying slaves as a business,"  though he stood high and was a "big bug in Cambridge."  The children were truly likely-looking.
     Nat is no ordinary man.  Like a certain other Nat known to history, his honest and independent bearing in every respect was that of a natural hero.  He was full black, and about six feet high; of powerful physical proportions, and of more than ordinary intellectual capacities.  With the strongest desire to make the Port of Canada safely, he had resolved to be "carried back," if attacked by the slave hunters, "only as a dead man."  He was held to service by John Muir, a wealthy farmer, and the owner of 40 or 50 slaves.  "Muir would drink and was generally devilish."  Two of Nat's sisters and one of his brothers had been" sold away to Georgia by him."  Therefore, admonished by threats and fears of having to pass through the same firey furnace, Nat was led to consider the U. G. R. R. scheme.  It was through the marriage of Nat's mistress to his present owner that he came into Muir's hands.  "Up to the time of her death," he had been encouraged to "hope" that he would be "free;" indeed, he was assured by her "dying testimony that the slaves were not to be sold."  But regardless of the promises and will of his departed wife, Muir soon extinguished all hopes of freedom from that quarter.  But not believing that God had put one man here to " be the servant of another—to work," and get none of the benefit of his labor, Nat armed himself with a good pistol and a big knife, and taking his wife with him, bade adieu forever to bondage.  Observing that Lizzie (Nat's wife) looked pretty decided and resolute, a member of the committee remarked, "Would your wife fight for freedom?"  "I have heard her say she would wade through blood and tears for her freedom," said Nat, in the most serious mood.
     The following advertisement from The Cambridge Democrat of Nov. 4, speaks for itself -

$300 REWARD.—Ran away from the subscriber, on Saturday night last, 17th inst., my negro woman Lizzie, about 28 years old.  She is medium sized, dark complexion, good-looking, with rather a down look.  When spoken to, replies quickly.  She was well dressed, wearing a red and green blanket shawl, and carried with her a variety of clothing.  She ran off in company with her husband, Nat Amby (belonging to John Muir, Esq.), who is about 6 feet in height, with slight impediment in his speech, dark chestnut color, and a large scar on the side of his neck.


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     I will give the above reward if taken in this County, or one-half of what she sells for if taken out of the County or State.  In either case to be lodged in Cambridge Jail.
     Cambridge, Oct. 21, 1857.                                          ALEXANDER H. BAYLY

     P. S.—For the apprehension of the above-named negro man Nat, and delivery in Cambridge Jail, I will give $500 reward.                                              JOHN MUIR.

     Now since Nat's master has been introduced in the above order, it seems but appropriate that Nat should be heard too; consequently the following letter is inserted for what it is worth:

                                                                                 AUBURN, June 10th, 1858.
     MR. WILLIAM STILL: - Sir, will you be so Kind as to write a letter to affey White in straw berry alley in Baltimore city on the point Say to her at nat Ambey that I wish to Know from her the Last Letar that Joseph Ambie and Henry Ambie two Brothers and Ann Warfield a couisin of them two boys I state above I would like to hear from my mother sichy Ambie you will Please write to my mother and tell her that I am well and doing well and state to her that I perform my Relissius dutys and I would like to hear from her and want to know if she is performing her Relissius dutys yet and send me word from all her children I left behind say to affey White that I wish her to write me a Letter in Hast my wife is well and doing well and my nephew is doing well Please tell aflfey White when she writes to me to Let me know where Joseph and Henry Ambie is
     Mr. Still Please Look on your Book and you will find my name on your Book They was eleven of us children and all when we came through and I feal interrested about my Brothers I have never heard from them since I Left home you will Please Be Kind annough to attend to this Letter When you send the answer to this Letter you will Please send it to P. R. Freeman Auburn City Cayuga County New York
                                                      Yours Truly                                       NAT AMBIE.

     WILLIAM is 25, complexion brown, intellect naturally good, with no favorable notions of the peculiar institution.  He was armed with a formidable dirk-knife, and declared he would use it if attacked, rather than be dragged back to bondage.
     HANNAH is a hearty looking young woman of 23 or 24, with a countenance that indicated that liberty was what she wanted and was contending for, and that she could not willingly submit to the yoke.  Though she came with the Cambridge party, she did not come from Cambridge, but from Marshall Hope, Caroline County, where she had been owned by Charles Peters, a man who had distinguished himself by getting " drunk, scratching and fighting, etc.," not unfrequently in his own family even.  She had no parents that she knew of   Left because they used her " so bad, beat and knocked " her about.
     "JACK SCOTT."  Jack is about thirty-six years of age, substantially built, dark color, and of quiet and repossessing manners.  He was owned by David B. Turner, Esq., a dry goods merchant of New York.  By birth, Turner was a Virginian, and a regular slave-holder.  His slaves were kept hired out by the year.  As Jack had had but slight acquaintance with his New York owner, he says but very little about him.  He was moved to leave simply because he had got tired of working for the "white people for nothing."  Fled from Richmond, Va. Jack went to Canada direct.  The following letter furnishes a clew to his whereabouts, plans, etc.

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                                              MONTREAL, September 1st 1859.
DEAR SIR: - It is with extreme pleasure that I set down to inclose you a few lines to let you know that I am well & I hope when these few lines come to hand they may find you & your family in good health and prosperity I left your house Nov. 3d, 1857, for Canada I Received a letter here from James Carter in Petersburg, saying that my wife would leave there about the 28th or the first September and that he would send her on by way of Philadelphia to you to send on to Montreal if she come on you be please to send her on and as there is so many boats coming here all times a day I may not know what time she will.  So you be please to give her this direction, she can get a cab and go to the Donegana Hotel and Edmund Turner is there he will take you where I lives and if he is not there cabman take you to Mr Taylors on Durham St. nearly opposite to the Methodist Church.  Nothing more at present but Remain your well wisher                                                JOHN SCOTT.

     C. HITCHENS. - This individual took his departure from Milford, Del., where he was owned by Wm. Hill, a farmer, who took special delight in having "fighting done on the place."  This passenger was one of our least intelligent travelers.  He was about 22.

     MAJOR ROSS - Major fled from John Jay, a farmer residing in the neighborhood of Havre de Grace, Md.  But for the mean treatment received from Mr. Jay, Major might have been foolish enough to have remained all his days in chains. " It's an ill wind that blows nobody any good."

     HENRY OBERNE - Henry was to be free at 28, but preferred having it at 21, especially as he was not certain that 28 would ever come.  He is of chestnut color, well made, &c., and came from Seaford, Md.

     PERRY BURTON - Perry is about twenty-seven years of age, decidedly colored, medium size, and only of ordinary intellect.  He acknowledged John R. Burton, a farmer on Indian River, as his master, and escaped because he wanted "some day for himself."

     ALFRED HUBERT, Israel Whitney and John ThompsonAlfred is of powerful muscular appearance and naturally of a good intellect.  He is full dark chestnut color, and would doubtless fetch a high price.  He was owned by Mrs. Matilda Niles, from whom he had hired his time, paying $110 yearly.  He had no fault to find with his mistress, except he observed she had a young family growing up, into whose hands he feared he might unluckily fall some day, and saw no way of avoiding it but by flight.  Being only twenty-eight, he may yet make his mark.

     ISRAEL, was owned by Elijah Money.  All that he could say in favor of his master was, that he treated in "respectfully," though he "drank hard."  Israel was about thirty-six and another excellent specimen of an able bodied and wide-awake man.  He hired his time at the rate of $120 a year, and had to find his wife and child in the bargain.  He came from Alexandria, Va.


      WILLIAM STILL - My Dear Friend: - I saw Carter and his friend a few days ago, and they told me, that you was well.  On the seventh of October my wife came to Hamilton.  Mr. .A. Hurberd, who came from Virginia with me, is going to get married the 20th of

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November, next. I wish you would write to me how many of ray friends you have seen since October, 1857.  Montgomery Green keeps a barber shop in Cayuga, in the State of New York.  I have not heard of Oscar Ball but once since I came here, and then he was well and doing well.  George Carroll is in Hamilton.  The times are very dull at present, and have been ever since I came here.  Please write soon.  Nothing more at present, only I still remain in Hamilton, C. W.                                                                     ISRAEL WHITNEY,

     JOHN is nineteen years of age, mulatto, spare made, but not lacking in courage, mother wit or perseverance.  He was born in Fauquier county, Va., and, after experiencing Slavery for a number of years there - being sold two or three times to the "highest bidder" - he was finally purchased by a cotton planter named Hezekiah Thompson, residing at Huntsville, Alabama.  Immediately after the sale Hezekiah bundled his new "purchase" off to Alabama, where he succeeded in keeping him only about two years, for at the end of that time John determined to strike a blow for liberty.  The incentive to this step was the inhuman treatment he was subjected to.  Cruel indeed did he find it there.  His master was a young man, "fond of drinking and carousing, and always ready for a fight or a knock down."  A short time before John left his master whipped him so severely with the "bull whip" that he could not use his arm for three or four days.  Seeing but one way of escape (and that more perilous than the way William and Ellen Craft, or Henry Box Brown traveled), he resolved to try it.  It was to get on the top of the car, instead of inside of it, and thus ride of nights, till nearly day light, when, at a stopping-place on the road, he would slip off the car, and conceal himself in the woods until under cover of the next night he could manage to get on the top of another car.  By this most hazardous mode of travel he reached Virginia.
     It may be best not to attempt to describe how he suffered at the hands of his owners in Alabama; or how severely he was pinched with hunger in traveling; or how, when be reached his old neighborhood in Virginia, he could not venture to inquire for his mother, brothers or sisters, to receive from them an affectionate word, an encouraging smile, a crust of bread, or a drink of water.
     Success attended his efforts for more than two weeks; but alas, after having got back north of Richmond, on his way home to Alexandria, he was captured and put in prison; his master being informed of the fact, came on and took possession of him again.  At first he refused to sell him; said he "had money enough and owned about thirty slaves;" therefore wished to "take him back to make an example of him."  However, through the persuasion of an uncle of his, he consented to sell.  Accordingly, John was put on the auction-block and bought for $1,300 by Green McMurray, a regular trader in Richmond.  McMurray again offered him for sale, but in consequence of hard times and the high price demanded, John did not go off, at least not in the way the trader desired to dispose of him, but did, nevertheless, succeed in going off on the Underground Rail Road.  Thus once more

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he reached his old home, Alexandria. His mother was in one place, and his six brothers and sisters evidently scattered, where he knew not.  Since he was five years of age, not one of them had he seen.
     If such sufferings and trials were not entitled to claim for the sufferer the honor of a hero, where in all Christendom could one be found who could prove a better title to that appellation ?
     It is needless to say that the Committee extended to him brotherly kind ness, sympathized with him deeply, and sent him on his way rejoicing.
     Of his subsequent career the following extract from a letter written at London shows that he found no rest for the soles of his feet under the Stars and Stripes in New York:
     I hope that you will remember John Thompson, who passed through your hands, I think, in October, 1857, at the same time that Mr. Cooper, from Charleston, South Carolina, came on.  I was engaged at New York, in the barber business, with a friend, and was doing very well, when I was betrayed and obliged to sail for England very suddenly, my master being in the city to arrest me. (London, December 21st,m  1860.)

     JEREMIAH COLBURN, - Jeremiah is a bright mulatto, of prepossessing appearance, reads and writes, and is quite intelligent.  He fled from Charleston, where he had been owned by Mrs. E. Williamson, an old lady about seventy-five, a member of the Episcopal Church, and opposed to Freedom.  As far as he was concerned, however, he said, she had treated him well; but, knowing that the old lady would not be long here, he judged it was best to look out in time.   Consequently, he availed himself of an Under ground Rail Road ticket, and bade adieu to that hot-bed of secession, South

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Carolina.  Indeed, he was fair enough to pass for white, and actually came the entire journey from Charleston to this city under the garb of a white gentleman.  With regard to gentlemanly bearing, however, he was all right in this particular.  Nevertheless, as he had been a slave all his days, he found that it required no small amount of nerve to succeed in running the gauntlet with slave-holders and slave-catchers for so long a journey.
     The following pointed epistle, from Jeremiah Colburn alias William Cooper, beautifully illustrates the effects of Freedom on many a passenger who received hospitalities at the Philadelphia depot—

                                                                                          SYRACUSE, June 9th, 1858.

     MR. STILL:—Dear Sir .—One of your Underground R. R. Passenger Drop you these few Lines to let you see that he have not forgoten you one who have Done so much for him well sir I am still in Syracuse, well in regard to what I am Doing for a Living I no you would like to hear, I am in the Painting Business, and have as much at that as I can do, and enough to Last me all the Summer, I had a knolledge of Painting Before I Left the South, the Hotell where I was working Last winter the Proprietor fail & shot up in the Spring and I Loose evry thing that I was working for all Last winter. I have Ritten a Letter to my Friend, P. Cliristianson some time a goo & have never Received an Answer, I hope this wont Be the case with this one, I have an idea sir, next winter iff I can this summer make Enough to Pay Expenses, to goo to that school at McGrowville A spend my winter their. I am going sir to try to Prepair myself for a Lectuer, I am going sir By the Help of god to try and Do something for the Caus to help my Poor Breathern that are suffering under the yoke. Do give my Respect to Mrs Stills & Perticular to Miss Julia Kelly, I supose she is still with you yet, I am in great hast you must excuse my short letter. I hope these few Lines may fine you as they Leave me quite well. It will afford me much Pleasure to hear from you.
                                                         yours Truly,        WILLIAM COOPER.

Thompson is still here and Doing well.  It will be seen that this young Charlestonian had rather exalted notions in his head. He was contemplating going to McGrawville College, for the purpose of preparing himself for the lecturing field.  Was it not rather strange that he did not want to return to his " kind-hearted old mistress?"

     THOMAS HENRY, NATHAN COLLINS AND HIS WIFE MARY ELLEN.—Tho mas is about twenty-six, quite dark, rather of a raw-boned make, indicating that times with him had been other than smooth. A certein Josiah Wilson owned Thomas.  He was a cross, rugged man, allowing not half enough to eat, and worked his slaves late and early.  Especially within the last two or three months previous to the escape, he had been intensely savage, in con sequence of having lost, not long before, two of his servants.  Ever since that misfortune, he had frequently talked of "putting the rest in his pocket."  This distressing threat made the rest love him none the more; but, to make assurances doubly sure, after giving them their supper every evening, which consisted of delicious "skimmed milk, corn cake and a herring each," he would very carefully send them up in the loft over the kitchen, and there v lock them up," to remain until called the next morning

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at three or four o'clock to go to work again. Destitute of money, clothing, and a knowledge of the way, situated as they were they concluded to make an effort for Canada.
     NATHAN was also a fellow-servant with Thomas, and of course owned by Wilson.  Nathan's wife, however, was owned by Wilson's son, Abrah.  Nathan was about twenty-five years of age, not very dark.  He had a remarkably large head on his shoulders and was the picture of determination, and apparently was exactly the kind of a subject that might be desirable in the British possessions,  in the forest or on the farm.
     His wife, Mary Ellen, is a brown-skinned, country-looking young woman, about twenty years of age. In escaping, they had to break jail, in the dead of night, while all were asleep in the big house ; and thus they succeeded.  What Mr. Wilson did, said or thought about these "shiftless" creatures we are not prepared to say; we may, notwithstanding, reasonably infer that the Underground has come in for a liberal share of his indignation and wrath.  The above travelers came from near New Market, Md.  The few rags they were clad in were not really worth the price that a woman would ask for washing them, yet they brought with them about all they had.  Thus they had to be newly rigged at the expense of the Vigilance Committee.
     The Cambridge Democrat, of Nov. 4, 1857, from which the advertisements were cut, said—
     "At a meeting of the people of this county, held in Cambridge, on the 2d of November, to take into consideration the better protection of the interests of the slave-owners.; among other things that were done, it was resolved to enforce the various acts of Assembly * * * * relating to servants and slaves.
      "The act of 1715, chap. 44, sec. 2, provides 'that from and after the publication thereof no servant or servants whatsoever, within this province, whether by indenture or by the custom of the counties, or hired for wages shall travel by land or water ten miles from the house of his, her or their master, mistress or dame, without a note under their hands, or under the hands of his, her or their overseer, if any be, under the penalty of being taken for a runaway, and to suffer such penalties as hereafter provided against runaways.'  The Act of 1806, chap. 81, sec. 5, provides,  'That any person taking up such runaway, shall have and receive $6,' to be paid by the master or owner.  It was also determined to have put in force the act of 1825, chap. 161, and the act of 1839, chap. 320, relative to idle, vagabond, free negroes, providing for their sale or banishment from the State.  All persons interested, are hereby notified that the aforesaid laws, in particular, will be enforced, and all officers failing to enforce them will be presented to the Grand Jury, and those who desire to avoid the penalties of the aforesaid statutes are requested to conform to these provisions."
     As to the modus operandi by which so many men, women and children were delivered and safely forwarded to Canada, despite slave-hunters and the fugitive slave law, the subjoined letters, from different agents and depots, will throw important light on the question.
     Men and women aided in this cause who were influenced by no oath of secresy, who received not a farthing for their labors, who believed that God

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had put it into the hearts of all mankind to love liberty, and had commanded men to " feel for those in bonds as bound with them,"  "to break every yoke and let the oppressed go free."  But here are the letters, bearing at least on some of the travelers:

                                                                                   WILMINGTON, 10th Mo. 31st, 1857.
     ESTEEMED FRIEND WILLIAM STILL: - I write to inform thee that we have either 17 or 27, I am not certain which, of that large Gang of God's poor, and I hope they are safe.  'The man who has them in charge informed me there were 27 safe and one boy lost during last night, about 14 years of age, without shoes; we have felt some anxiety about him, for fear he may be taken up and betray the rest.  I have since been informed there are but 17 so that I cannot at present tell which is correct.  I have several looking out for the lad; they will be kept from Phila. for the present.  My principal object in writing thee at this time is to inform thee of what one of our constables told me this morning; he told me that a colored man in Phila. who professed to be a great friend of the colored people was a traitor; that he had been written to by an Abolitionist in Baltimore, to keep a look out for those slaves that left Cambridge this night week, told him they would be likely to pass through Wilmington on 6th day or 7th day night, and the colored man in Phila. had written to the master of part of them telling him the above, and the master arrived here yesterday in consequence of the information, and told one of our constables the above ; the man told the name of the Baltimore writer, which he had forgotten, but declined telling the name of the colored man in Phila. I hope you will be able to find out who he is, and should I be able to learn the name of the Baltimore friend, I will put him on his Guard, respecting his Phila. correspondents. As ever thy friend, and the friend of Humanity, without regard to color or clime.                                    THOS. GARRETT.

     How much truth there was in the " constable's " story to the effect, " that a colored man in Philadelphia, who professed to be a great friend of the colored people, was a traitor, etc.," the Committee never learned.  As a general tiling, colored people were true to the fugitive slave; but now and then some unprincipled individuals, under various pretenses, would cause us great anxiety.


     DEAR SIR: - There is Six men and women and Five children making Eleven Persons.  If you are willing to Receve them write to me imediately and I will bring them to your To morrow Evening I would not Have wrote this but the Times are so much worse Financialy that I thought It best to hear From you Before I Brought such a Crowd Down Please Answer this and                                      Oblige JOHN AUGUSTA.

      This document has somewhat of a military appearance about it. It is short and to the point.  Friend Augusta was well known in Norristown as a first-rate hair-dresser and a prompt and trustworthy Underground Rail Road agent.  Of course a speedy answer was returned to his note, and he was instructed to bring the eleven passengers on to the Committee in Brotherly Love.

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                                                                                                          SUNNYSIDE, Nov. 6th, 1857

     DEAR FRIEND: - Eight more of the large company reached our place last night, direct from Ercildown.  The eight constitute one family of them, the husband and wife with four children under eight years of age, wish tickets of Elmira.  Three sons, nearly grown, will be forwarded to Phila., probably by the train which passes Phoenixville at seven o'clock of to-morrow evening the seventh.  It would be safest to meet them there.  We shall send them to Elijah with the request for them to be sent there.  And I presume they will be.  If they should not arrive you may suppose it did not suit Elijah to send them.
     We will send the money for the tickets by C. C. Burleigh, who will be in Phila. on second day morning.  If you please, you will forward the tickets by to-morrow's mail as we do not have a mail again till third day.    Yours hastily,   G. LEWIS.
      Please give directions for forwarding to Elmira and name the price of tickets.

     At the first Miss Lewis thought of forwarding only a part of her fugitive guests to the Committee in Philadelphia, but on further consideration, all were safely sent along in due time, and the Committee took great pains to have them made as comfortable as possible, as the cases of these mothers and children especially called forth the deepest sympathy.
     In this connection it seems but fitting to allude to Captain Lee's sufferings on account of his having brought away in a skiff, by sea, a party of four, alluded to in the beginning of this single month's report.
     Unfortunately he was suspected, arrested, tried, convicted, and torn from his wife and two little children, and sent to the Richmond Penitentiary for twenty-five years.  Before being sent away from Portsmouth, Va., where he was tried, for ten days in succession in the prison five lashes a day were laid heavily on his bare back.  The further suffererings of poor Lee and his heart-broken wife, and his little daughter and son, are too painful for minute recital.  In this city the friends of Freedom did all in their power to comfort Mrs. Lee, and administered aid to her and her children; but she broke down under her mournful fate and went to that bourne from whence no traveler ever returns.
     Captain Lee suffered untold misery in prison, until he, also, not a great while before the Union forces took possession of Richmond, sank beneath the severity of his treatment, went likewise to the grave.  The two children for a long time were under the care of Mr. Wm. Ingram of Philadelphia, who voluntarily, from pure benevolence, proved himself to be a father and a friend to them.  To their poor mother also he had been a true friend.
     The way in which Captain Lee came to be convicted, if the Committee were correctly informed and they think they were, was substantially in this wise:  In the darkness of the night, four men, two of them constables, one of the

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other two, the owner of one of the slaves who had been aided away by Lee, seized the wife of one of the fugitives and took her to the woods, where the fiends stripped every particle of clothing from her person, tied her to a tree, and armed with knives, cowhides and a shovel, swore vengeance against her, declaring they would kill her if she did not testify against Lee. vAt first she refused to reveal the secret; indeed she knew but little to reveal; but her savage tormentors beat her almost to death.v Under this barbarous infliction she was constrained to implicate Captain Lee, which was about all the evidence the prosecution had against him.  And in reality her evidence, for two reasons, should not have weighed a straw, as it was contrary to the laws of the State of Virginia, to admit the testimony of colored persons against white; then again for the reason that this testimony was obtained wholly by brute force.
     But in this instance, this woman on whom the murderous attack had been made, was brought into court on Lee's trial and was bid to simply make her statement with regard to Lee's connection with the escape of her husband.  This she did of course.  And in the eyes of this chivalric court, this procedure "was all right."  But thank God the events since those dark and dreadful days, afford abundant proof that the All-seeing Eye was not asleep to the daily sufferings of the poor bondman.




     Rarely did the peculiar institution present the relations of mistress and maid-servant in a light so apparently favorable as in the case of Mrs. Joseph Cahell (widow of the late Hon. Jos Cahell, of Va.), and her slave, Cordelia.  The Vigilance Committee's first knowledge of either of these memorable personages was brought about in the following manner.
     About the 30th of March, in the year 1859, a member of the Vigilance Committee was notified by a colored servant, living at a fashionable boardinghouse on Chestnut street that a lady with a slave woman from Fredericksburg, Va., was boarding at said house, and, that said slave woman desired to receive counsel and aid from the Committee, as she was anxious to secure her freedom, before her mistress returned to the South.  On further consultation about the matter, a suitable hour was named for the meeting of the Committee and the Slave at the above named boarding-house.  Finding that

[pg. 113]
the woman was thoroughly reliable, the Committee told her "that two modes of deliverance were open before her.  One was to take her trunk and all her clothing and quietly retire."  The other was to "sue out a writ of habeas corpus, and bring the mistress before the Court, where she would be required, under the laws of Pennsylvania, to show cause why the restrained this woman of her freedom."  Cordelia concluded to adopt the former expedient, provided the Committee would protect her.  Without hesitation the Committee answered her, that to the extent of their ability, she should have their aid with pleasure, without delay.  Consequently a member of the Committee was directed to be on hand at a given hour that evening, as Cordelia would certainly be ready to leave her mistress to take care of herself.  Thus, at the appointed hour, Cordelia, very deliberately, accompanied the Committee away from her "kind hearted old mistress."
     In the quiet and security of the Vigilance Committee Room, Cordelia related substantially the following brief story touching her relationship as a slave to Mrs. Joseph Cahell.  In this case, as with thousands and tens of thousands of others, as the old adage fitly expresses it, "All is not gold that glitters."  Under this apparently pious and noble-minded lady, it will be seen, that Cordelia had known naught but misery and sorrow.
     Mrs. Cahell, having engaged board for a month at a fashionable private boarding-house on Chestnut street, took an early opportunity to caution Cordelia against going into the streets, and against having anything to say or do with "free niggers in particular"; withal, she appeared unusually kind, so much so, that before retiring to bed in the evening, she would call Cordelia to her chamber, and by her side would take her Prayer-book and Bible, and go through the forms of devotional service.  She stood very high both as a church communicant and a lady in society.
     For a fortnight it seemed as though her prayers were to be answered, for Cordelia apparently bore herself as submissively as ever, and Madame received calls and accepted invitations from some of the elite of the city, without suspecting any intention on the part of Cordelia to escape.  But Cordelia could not forget how her children had all been sold by her mistress! 
     Cordelia was about fifty-seven years of age, with about an equal proportion of colored and white blood in her veins; very neat, respectful and prepossessing in manner.
     From her birth to the hour of her escape she had worn the yoke under Mrs. C., as her most efficient and reliable maid-servant.  She had been at her mistress' beck and call as seamstress, dressing-maid, nurse in the sickroom, etc., etc., under circumstances that might appear to the casual observer uncommonly favorable for a slave.  Indeed, on his first interview with her, the Committee man was so forcibly impressed with the belief, that her condition in Virginia had been favorable, that he hesitated to ask her if she did not desire her liberty.  A few moments' conversation with her, however, con-

[pg. 114]
vinced him of her good sense and decision of purpose with regard to this matter.  For, in answer to the first question he put to her, she answered, that "As many creature comforts and religious privileges as she had been the recipient of under her 'kind mistress,' still she 'wanted to be free,' and 'was bound to leave,' that she had been 'treated very cruelly;' that her children had 'all been sold away' from her; that she had been threatened with sale herself 'on the first insult,'" etc."
     She was willing to take the entire responsibility of taking care of herself.  On the suggestion of a friend, before leaving her mistress, she was disposed to sue for her freedom, but, upon a reconsideration of the matter, she chose rather to accept the hospitality of the Underground Rail Road, and leave in a quiet way and go to Canada, where she would be free indeed.  Accordingly she left her mistress and was soon a free woman.
     The following sad experience she related calmly, in the presence of several friends, an evening or two after she left her mistress:
     Two sons and two daughters had been sold from her by her mistress, within the last three years, since the death of her master.  Three of her children had been sold to the Richmond market and the other in Nelson county.
     Paulina was the first sold, two years ago last May.  Nat was the next; he was sold to Abram Warrick of Richmond.  Paulina was sold before it was named to her mother that it had entered her mistress's mind to dispose of her.  Nancy, from infancy, had been in poor health.  Nevertheless, she had been obliged to take her place in the field with the rest of the slaves, of more rugged constitution, until she had passed her twentieth year, and had become a mother.  Under these circumstances, the overseer and his wife complained to the mistress that her health was really too bad for a field hand and begged that she might be taken where her duties would be less oppressive.  Accordingly, she was withdrawn from the field, and was set to spinning and weaving.  When too sick to work for mistress invariably too the ground, that "nothing was the matter," notwithstanding the fact, that her family physician, Dr. Ellsom, had pronounced her "quite weakly and sick."
     In an angry mood one day, Mrs. Cahell declared she would cure her; and again sent her to the field, "with orders to the overseer, to whip her every day, and make her work or kill her. "  Again the overseer said it was "no use to try, for her health would not stand it," and she was forthwith returned.  The mistress then concluded to sell her.
     One Sabbath evening a nephew of hers, who resided in New Orleans, happened to be on a visit to his aunt, when it occurred to her, that she had "better get Nancy off if possible."  Accordingly, Nancy was called in for examination.  Being dressed in her "Sunday best" and "before a poor candle-light," she appeared to good advantage; and the nephew concluded to start with her on the following Tuesday morning.  However, the next

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morning, he happened to see her by the light of the sun, and in her working garments, which satisfied him that he had been grossly deceived; that she would barely live to reach New Orleans; he positively refused to carry out the previous evening's contract, thus leaving her in the hands of her mistress, with the advice, that she should "doctor her up."
     The mistress, not disposed to be defeated, obviated the difficulty by selecting a little boy, made a lot of the two, and thus made it an inducement to a purchaser to buy the sick woman; the boy and the woman brought $700.
     In the sale of her children, Cordelia was as little regarded as if she had been a cow.
     "I felt wretched," she said, with emphasis, "when I heard that Nancy had been sold," which was not until after she had been removed.  "But," she continued, "I was not at liberty to make my grief known to a single white soul.  I wept and couldn't help it."  But remembering that she was liable, "on the first insult," to be sold herself, she sought no sympathy from her mistress, whom she describes as "a woman who shows as little kindness towards her servants as any woman in the States of America.  She neither likes to feed nor clothe well."
     With regard to flogging, however, in days past, she had been up to the mark.  "A many a slap and blow" had Cordelia received since she arrived at womanhood,  directly from the madam's own hand.
     One day smarting under cruel treatment, she appealed to her mistress in the following strain: "I stood by your mother in all her sickness and nursed her till she died!"  "I waited on your niece, night and day for months, till she died."  "I waited upon your husband all my life - in his sickness especially, and shrouded him in death, etc., yet I  am treated cruelly."  It was of no avail.
     Her mistress, at one time, was the owner of about five hundred slaves, but within the last few years she had greatly lessened the number by sales.
     She stood very high as a lady, and was a member of the Episcopal Church.
     To punish Cordelia, on several occasions, she had been sent to one of the plantations to work as a field hand.  Fortunately, however, she found the overseers more compassionate than her mistress, though she received no particular favors from any of them.
     Asking her no name to overseers, etc., she did so.  The first was "Marks, a thin-visaged, poor-looking man, great for swearing."  The second was "Gilbert Brower, a very rash, portly man."  The third was "Buck Young, a stout man, and very sharp."  The fourth was "Lynn Powell, a tall man with red whiskers, very contrary and spiteful."  There was also a fifth one, but his name was lost.
     Thus Cordelia's experience, though chiefly confined to the "great house," extended occasionally over the corn and tobacco fields, among the overseers

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and field hands generally.  But under no circumstances could she find it in her heart to be thankful for the privileges of Slavery.
     After leaving her mistress she learned, with no little degree of pleasure, that a perplexed state of things existed at the boarding-house; that her mistress was seriously puzzled to imagine how she would get her shoes and stockings on and off; how she would get her head combed, get dressed, be attended to in sickness, etc, as she (Cordelia), had been compelled to discharge these offices all her life.
     Most of the boarders, being slave-holders, naturally sympathized in her affliction; and some of them went so far as to offer a reward to some of the colored servants to gain a knowledge of her whereabouts.  Some charged the servants with having a hand in her leaving, but all agreed that “she had left a very kind and indulgent mistress,” and had acted very foolishly in running out of Slavery into Freedom.
     A certain Doctor of Divinity, the pastor of an Episcopal church in this city and a friend of the mistress, hearing of her distress, by request or voluntarily, undertook to find out Cordelia’s place of seclusion.  Hailing on the street a certain colored man with a familiar face, who he thought knew nearly all the colored people about town, be related to him the predicament of his lady friend from the South, remarked how kindly she had always treated her servants, signified that Cordelia would rue the change, and be left to suffer among the “miserable blacks down town,” that she would not be able to take care of herself; quoted Scripture justifying Slavery, and finally suggested that he (the colored man) would be doing a duty and a kindness to the fugitive by using his influence to “ find her and prevail upon her to return.”
     It so happened that the colored man thus addressed, was Thomas Dorsey,
the well-known fashionable caterer of Philadelphia, who had had the experience of quite a number of years as a slave at the South,—had himself once been pursued as a fugitive, and having, by his industry in the condition of Freedom, acquired a handsome estate, he felt entirely qualified to reply to the reverend gentleman, which he did, though in not very respectful phrases, telling him that Cordelia had as good a right to her liberty as he had, or her mistress either; that God had never intended one man to be the slave of another; that it was all false about the slaves being better off than the free colored people; that he would find as many “poor, miserably degraded,”
of his own color “ down-town,” as among the “degraded blacks”; and concluded by telling him that he would “rather give her a hundred dollars to help her off, than to do aught to make known her whereabouts, if he knew ever so much about her.”
      What further steps were taken by the discomfited divine, the mistress, or her boarding-house sympathizers, the Committee was not informed.  But with regard to Cordelia: she took her departure for Canada, in the

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midst of the Daniel Webster (fugitive) trial, with the hope of being permitted to enjoy the remainder of her life in Freedom and peace.  Being a member of the Baptist Church, and professing to be a Christian, she was persuaded that, by industry and assistance of the Lord, a way would be opened to the seeker of Freedom even in a strange land and among strangers.
     The story appeared in part of the N. Y. Evening Post, having been furnished by the writer, without his name to it.  It is certainly none the less interesting now, as it may be read in the light of Universal Emancipation.




     About the latter part of December, 1857, Isaac and Edmondson, brothers, succeeded in making their escape together from Petersburg, Va.  They barely escaped the auction block, as their mistress, Mrs. Ann Colley, a widow, had just completed arrangements for their sale on the coming first day of January.  In this kind of property, however, Mrs. Colley had not largely invested.  In the days of her prosperity, while all was happy and contented, she could only boast of “four head:” these brothers, Jackson, Isaac and Edmondson and one other.  In May, 1857, Jackson had fled and was received by the Vigilance Committee, who placed him upon their books briefly in the following light:

     " RUNAWAY—Fifty Dollars Reward,—Ran away some time in May last, my Servant man, who calls himself Jackson Turner.  He is about 27 years of age, and has one of his front teeth out.  He is quite black, with thick lips, a little bow-legged, and looks down when spoken to.  I will give a. reward of Fifty dollars if taken out of the city, and twenty five Dollars if taken within the city.  I forewarn all masters of vessels from harboring or employing the said slave; all persons who disregard this Notice will be punished as the law directs.                                                                                                            ANN COLLEY.

                                                                                                                        Petersburg, June 8th, 1857.”
JACKSON is quite dark, medium size, and well informed for one in his condition.  In Slavery, he had been “ pressed hard.”  His hire, “ten dollars per month ” he was obliged to produce at the end of each month, no matter how much he had been called upon to expend for “doctor bills, &c.”  The woman he called mistress went by the name of Ann Colley, a widow, living near Petersburg. “ She was very quarrelsome,” although a “ member of the Methodist Church.”  Jackson seeing that his mistress was yearly growing “harder and harder,” concluded to try and better his condition if possible.”  Having a free wife in the North, who was in the habit of

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communicating with him, he was kept fully awake to the love of Freedom.  The Underground Rail Road expense the Committee gladly bore.  No further record of Jackson was made.  Jackson found his poor old father here, where he had resided for a number of years in a state of almost total blindness, and of course in much parental anxiety about his boys in chains.  On the arrival of Jackson, his heart overflowed with joy and gratitude not easily described, as the old man had hardly been able to muster faith enough to believe that he should ever look with his dim eyes upon one of his sons in Freedom.  After a day or two's tarrying, Jackson took his departure for
safer and more healthful localities, - her “British Majesty’s possessions.”  The old man remained only to feel more keenly than ever, the pang of having sons still toiling in hopeless servitude.
     In less than seven months after Jackson had shaken off the yoke, to the unspeakable joy of the father, Isaac and Edmondson succeeded in following their brother’s example, and were made happy partakers of the benefits and blessings of the Vigilance Committee of Philadelphia.  On first meeting his two boys, at the Underground Rail Road Depot, the old man took each one in his arms, and as looking through a glass darkly, straining every nerve of his almost lost sight, exclaiming, whilst hugging them closer and closer to his bosom for some minutes, in tears of joy and wonder, “My son Isaac, is this you? my son Isaac, is this you, &c. ?”  The scene was calculated to awaken the deepest emotion and to bring tears to eyes not accustomed to weep.  Little had the old man dreamed in his days of sadness, that he should share such a feast of joy over the deliverance of his sons.  But it is in vain to attempt to picture the affecting scene at this reunion, for that would be impossible.  Of their slave life, the records contain but a short notice, simply as follows:
     “ ISAAC is twenty-eight years of age, hearty-looking, well made, dark color and intelligent.  He was owned by Mrs. Ann Colley, a widow, residing near Petersburg, Va.  Isaac and Edmondson were to have been sold, on New Year’s day; a. few days hence.  How sad her disappointment must have been on finding them gone, may be more easily imagined than described.”
     EDMONDSON is about twenty-five, a brother of Isaac, and a smart, good looking young man, was owned by Mrs. Colley also. “This is the class of fugitives to make good subjects for John Bull,” thought the Committee, feeling pretty well assured that they would make good reports after having enjoyed free air in Canada for a short time.  Of course, the Committee enjoined upon them very earnestly “not to forget their brethren left behind groaning in fetters; but to prove by their industry, uprightness, economy, sobriety and thrift, by the remembrance of their former days of oppression and their obligations to their God, that they were worthy of the country to which they were going, and so to help break the bands of the oppressors, and

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undo the heavy burdens of the oppressed.”  Similar advice was impressed upon the minds of all travelers passing over this branch of the Underground Rail Road.  From hundreds thus admonished, letters came affording the most gratifying evidence that the‘ counsel of the Committee was not in vain.  The appended letter from the youngest brother, written with his own hand, will indicate his feelings and views in Canada:

                                                                                                               HAMILTON, CANADA, WEST Mar. 1, 1858.

     MR. STILL, DEAR SIR: - I have taken the opportunity to enform you yur letter came to hand 27th I ware glad to hear from you and yer family i hope this letter May fine you and the famly Well i am Well my self  My Brother join me in Love to you and all the frend.  I ware sorry to hear of the death of Mrs. freaman.  We all must die sune or Late this a date we all must pay we must Perpar for the time she ware a nise lady dear sir the all is well and san thar love to you Emerline have Ben sick But is beter at this time.  I saw the hills the war well and san thar Love to you.  I war sory to hear that My brother war sol i am glad that i dad come away when I did god works all the things for the Best he is young he may get a log in the wole May god Bless hem ef you have any News from Petersburg Va Pla Rite me a word when you answer this Letter and ef any person came form home Letter Me know.  Please sen me one of your Paper that had the under grands R wrod give My Love to Mr. Careter and his family I am Seving with a barber at this time he have promust to give he the trad ef i can lane it he is much of a gentman.  Mr. Still sir i have writing a letter to Mr. Brown of Petersburg Va Pleas reed it and ef you think it right Plas sen it by the Mail or by hand you wall see how i have writen it the will know how sent it by the way this writing ef the ancer it you can sen it to Me i have tol them direct to yor care for Ed. t. Smith Philadelphia i hope it may be right i promorst to rite to hear Please rite to me sune and let me know ef you do sen it on write wit you did with that ma a bught the cappet Bage do not fergit to rite tal John he mite rite to Me.  I am doing as well is i can at this time but i get no wagges But my Bord but is satfid at that thes hard time and glad that i am Hear and in good helth.  Nothing More at this time,
                                                                                                           yor truly,                        EDMUND TURNER.

     The same writer sent to the Corresponding Secretary the following "Warning to Slave-holders."  At the time these documents were received, Slaveholders were neer more defiant.  The right to trample on the weak in oppression was indisputable.  "Cinnamon and odors, and ointments, and frankincense, and wine, and oil, and fine flour and wheat, and beasts, and sheep, and horses, and chariots, and slaves, and souls of men,"  slave -holders believed doubtless were theirs by Devine Right.  Little dreaming that in less than three short years - 'Therefore shall her plagues come in one day, death, and mourning, and famine."  In view of the marvelous changes which have been wrought by the hand of the Almighty, this warning to slave-holders from one who felt the sting of Slavery, as evincing a particular phase of simple faith and Christian charity is entitled to a place in these records.


     Well may the Southern slaveholder say, that holding their Fellow men in Bondage is no (sin, because it is their delight as the Egyptians, so do they; but nevertheless God in his

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own good, time will bring them out by a mighty hand, as it is recorded in the sacred oracles of truth, that Ethiopia. shall soon stretch out her hands to God, speaking in the positive (shall).  And my prayer is to you, oh, slaveholder, in the name of that God who in the beginning said, Let there be light, and there was light.  Let my People go that they may serve me; thereby good may come unto thee and to thy children’s children.  Slave-holder have you seriously thought upon the condition yourselves, family and slaves; have you read where Christ has enjoined upon all his creatures to read his word, thereby that they may have no excuse when coming before his judgment seat ‘I But you say he shall not read his word, consequently his sin will be upon your head.  I think every man has as much as he can do to answer for his own sins.  And now my dear slave-holder, who with you are bound and fast hastening to judgment?  As one that loves your soul repent ye, therefore, and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out when the time of refreshing shall come from the presence of the Lord.
     In the language of the poet:

Stop, poor sinner, stop and think,
   Before you further go;
Think upon the brink of death
   Of everlasting woe.
Say, have you an arm like God,
   That you his will oppose?
Fear you not that iron rod
   With which he breaks his foes?

     Is the prayer of one that loves your souls.                                                    EDMUND TURNER.

     N. B.   The signature bears the name of one who knows and felt the sting of Slavery; but now, thanks be to God, I am now where the poisonous breath taints not our air, but every one is sitting under his own vine and fig tree, where none dare to make him ashamed or afraid.                                                                         EDMUND TURNER, formerly of Petersburg, Va.

                                                                                                                       HAMILTON, June 22d, 1858, C. W.

     TO MR. AND MRS. STILL, DEAR SIR: - A favorable opportunity affords the pleasure of acknowledging the receipt of letters and papers; certainly in this region they were highly appreciated, and I hope the time may come that your kindness will be reciprocated we are al well at present, but times continue dull.  I also deeply regret the excitement recently on the account of those slaves, you will favor me by keeping me posted upon the subject.  Those words written to slaveholder is the thought of one who had suffered, and now I thought it a duty incumbent upon me to cry aloud and spare not, &c., by sending these few lines where the slaveholder may hear.  You will still further oblige your humble servant also, to correct any inaccuracy.  My respects to you and your family and all inquiring friends.
                                                           Your friend and well wisher,                              EDMUND TURNER.

     The then impending judgments seen by an eye of faith as set forth in this "Warning," soon fell with crushing weight upon the oppressor, and Slaery died.  But the old blind father of Jackson, Isaac and Edmundson, still lives and may be seen daily on the streets of Philadelphia; and though "halt, and lame, and blind, and poor," doubtless resulting from his early oppression, he can thank God and rejoice that he has lived to see Slavery abolished.


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     In very desperate straits many new inventions were sought after by  deep-thinking and resolute slaves, determined to be free at any cost.  But it must here be admitted, that, in looking carefully over the more perilous methods resorted to, Robert Brown, alias Thomas Jones, stands second to none, with regard to deeds of bold daring.  This hero escaped from Martinsburg, Va., in 1856.  He was a man of medium size, mulatto, about thirty-eight years of age, could read and write, and was naturally sharp-witted.  He had formerly been owned by Col. John F. Franic whom Robert charged with various offences of a serious domestic character.
     Furthermore, he also alleged, that his "mistress was cruel to all the slaves," declaring that "they (the slaves), could not live with her," that "she had to hire servants," etc.
     In order to effect his escape, Robert was obliged to swim the Potomac river on horseback, on Christmas night, while the cold, wind, storm, and darkness were indescribably dismal.  This daring bondman, rather than submit to his oppressor any longer, perilled his life as above stated.  Where he crossed the river was about a half a mile wide.  Where could be found in history a more noble and daring struggle for Freedom?
     The wife of his bosom and his four children, only five days before he fled, were sold to a trader in Richmond, Va., for no other offence than simply "because she had resisted" the lustful designs of her master, being "true to her own companion."  After this poor slave mother and her children were cast into prison for sale, the husband and some of his friends tried hard to find a purchaser in the neighborhood; but the malicious and brutal master refused to sell her - wishing to gratify his malice to the utmost, and to punish his victims all that lay in his power, he sent them to the place above named.
     In this trying hour, the severed and bleeding heart of the husband resolved to escape at all hazards, taking with him a daguerreotype likeness of his wife which he happened to have on hand, and a lock of hair from her head, and from each of the children as mementoes of his unbounded (though sundered) affection for them.
     After crossing the river, his wet clothing freezing to him, he rode all night, a distance of about forty miles.  In the morning he left his faithful horse tied to a fence, quite broken down.  He then commenced his dreary journey on foot - cold and hungry - in a strange place, where it was quite unsafe to make known his condition and wants.  Thus for a day or two, without food or shelter, he traveled until his feet were literally worn out, and in this condition he arrived at Harrisburg, where he found friends.  Passing over many of the interesting incidents on the road, suffice it to say,

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he arrived safely in this city, on New Year's night, 1857, about two hours before day break (the telegraph having announced his coming from Harrisburg), having been a week on the way.  The night he arrived was very cold; besides, the Underground train, that morning, was about three hours behind time; in waiting for it, entirely out in the cold, a member of the Vigilance Committee thought he was frosted.  But when he came to listen to the story of the Fugitive's sufferings, his mind changed.
     Scarcely had Robert entered the house of one of the Committee, where he was kindly received, when he took from his pocket his wife's likeness, speaking very touchingly while gazing upon it and showing it.  Subsequently, in speaking of his family, he showed the locks of hair referred to, which he had carefully rolled up in a paper separately.  Unrolling them, he said, this is my wife's;"  " this is from my oldest daughter, eleven years old;" "and this is from my next oldest;" "and this from the next," "and this from my infant, only eight weeks old."  These mementoes he cherished with the utmost care as the last remains of his affectionate family.  At the sight of these locks of hair so tenderly preserved, the member of the Committee could fully appreciate the resolution of the fugitive in plunging into the Potomac on the back of a dumb beast, in order to flee from a place and people who had made such barbarous havoc in his household.
     His wife, as represented by the likeness, was of fair complexion, prepossessing, and good looking- perhaps not over thirty-three years of age.


     ANTHONY had been serving under the yoke of Warring Talvert, of Richmond, Va.  Anthony was of a rich black complexion, medium size, about twenty-five years of age.  He was intelligent, and a member of the Baptist Church.  His master was a member of the Presbyterian Church and held family prayers with the servants.  But Anthony believed seriously, that his master prayers with the servants.  But Anthony believed seriously, that his master was no more than a "whitened sepulchre," one who was fond of saying, "Lord, Lord," but did not do what the Lord bade him, consequently Anthony felt, that before the Great Judge his "master's many prayers" would not benefit him, as long as he continued to hold his fellowmen in bondage.  He left a father, Samuel Loney, and mother, Rebecca also, one sister and four brothers.  His old father had bought himself and was free; likewise his mother, being very old, had been allowed to go free.  Anthony escaped in May, 1857.


      Cornelius took passage per the Underground Rail Road, in March, 1857, from the neighborhood of Salvington, Stafford county, Va.  He

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stated that he had been claimed by Henry L. Brooke, whom he declared to be a " hard drinker and a hard swearer."  Cornelius had been very much bleached by the Patriarchal Institution, and he was shrewd enough to take advantage of this circumstance.  In regions of country where men were less critical and less experienced than Southerners, as to how the bleaching process was brought about, Cornelius Scott would have had no difficulty whatever in passing for a white man of the most improved Anglo Saxon type.  Although a young man only twenty-three years of age, and quite stout, his fair complexion was decidedly against him.  He concluded, that for this very reason, he would not have been valued at more than five hundred dollars in the market.  He left his mother (Ann Stubbs, and half brother, Isaiah), and traveled as a white man.



     This candidate for Canada had the good fortune to escape the clutches of his mistress, Mrs. Elvina Duncans, widow of the late Rev. James Duncans, who lived near Cumberland, Md.  He had very serious complaints to allege against his mistress, "who was a member of the Presbyterian Church."  To use his own language, "the servants in the house were treated worse than dogs."  John was thirty-two years of age, dark chestnut color, well made, prepossessing in appearance, and he "fled to keep from being sold."  With the Underground Rail Road he was "highly delighted."  Nor was he less pleased with the thought, that he had caused his mistress, who was "one of the worst women who ever lived," to lose twelve hundred dollars by him.  He escaped in March, 1857.  He did not admit that he loved slavery any the better for the reason that his master was a preacher, or that his mistress was the wife of a preacher.  Although a common farm hand, Samuel had common sense, and for a long time previous had been watching closely the conduct of his mistress, and at the same time had been laying his plans for escaping on the Underground Rail Road the first chance.

     $100 REWARD - My negro man Richard has been missing since Sunday night, March 22d.  I will give $100 to any one who will secure him or deliver him to me.  Richard is thirty years old, but looks older; very short legs, dark, but rather bright color, broad cheek bones, a respectful and serious manner, generally looks away when spoken to, small moustache and beard (but he may have them off).  He is a re markably intelligent man, and can turn his hand to anything.  He took with him a bag made of Brussels carpet, with my name written in large, rough letters on the bottom, and a good stock of coarse and fine clothes, among them a navy cap and a low-crowned hat.  He has been seen about New Kent C. H , and on the Pamunky river, and is no doubt trying to get off in some vessel bound North.
     April 18th, 1857                                                        J. W. RANDOLPH, Richmond, Va.

     Even at this late date, it may perhaps afford Mr. R. a degree of satis-

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faction to know what became of Richard; but if this should not be the case, Richard's children, or mother, or father, if they are living, may possibly see these pages, and thereby be made glad by learning of Richard's wisdom as u traveler, in the terrible days of slave-hunting.  Consequently here is what was recorded of him, April 3d, 1857, at the Underground Rail Road Station, just before a free ticket was tendered him for Canada.  "Richard is thirty-three years of age, small of stature, dark color, smart and resolute.  He was owned by Captain Tucker, of the United States Navy, from whom he fled."  He was "tired of serving, and wanted to marry," was the cause of his escape.  He had no complaint of bad treatment to make against his owner; indeed he said, that he had been "used well all his life."  Nevertheless, Richard felt that this Underground Rail Road was the "greatest road he ever saw."
     When the war broke out, Richard girded on his knapsack and went to help Uncle Sam humble Richmond and break the yoke.

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