The Underground Railroad eBook

William Still
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,446 pages of information about The Underground Railroad.
off the boat, and had then gone on their journey to Tuscumbia, but that the “white man” (Mr. Concklin) had “got away from them,” about twelve miles up the river.  It seems he got off the boat some way, near or at Smithland, Ky., a town at the mouth of the Cumberland River.  I presume the report is true, and hope he will finally escape, though I was also told that they were in pursuit of him.  Would that the others had also escaped.  Peter and Levin could have done so, I think, if they had had resolution.  One of them rode a horse, he not tied either, behind the coach in which the others were.  He followed apparently “contented and happy.”  From report, they told their master, and even their pursuers, before the master came, that Concklin had decoyed them away, they coming unwillingly.  I write on a very unsteady boat.

    Yours, N.R.  JOHNSTON.

A report found its way into the papers to the effect that “Miller,” the white man arrested in connection with the capture of the family, was found drowned, with his hands and feet in chains and his skull fractured.  It proved, as his friends feared, to be Seth Concklin.  And in irons, upon the river bank, there is no doubt he was buried.

In this dreadful hour one sad duty still remained to be performed.  Up to this moment the two sisters were totally ignorant of their brother’s whereabouts.  Not the first whisper of his death had reached them.  But they must now be made acquainted with all the facts in the case.  Accordingly an interview was arranged for a meeting, and the duty of conveying this painful intelligence to one of the sisters, Mrs. Supplee, devolved upon Mr. McKim.  And most tenderly and considerately did he perform his mournful task.

Although a woman of nerve, and a true friend to the slave, an earnest worker and a liberal giver in the Female Anti-Slavery Society, for a time she was overwhelmed by the intelligence of her brother’s death.  As soon as possible, however, through very great effort, she controlled her emotions, and calmly expressed herself as being fully resigned to the awful event.  Not a word of complaint had she to make because she had not been apprised of his movements; but said repeatedly, that, had she known ever so much of his intentions, she would have been totally powerless in opposing him if she had felt so disposed, and as an illustration of the true character of the man, from his boyhood up to the day he died for his fellow-man, she related his eventful career, and recalled a number of instances of his heroic and daring deeds for others, sacrificing his time and often periling his life in the cause of those who he considered were suffering gross wrongs and oppression.  Hence, she concluded, that it was only natural for him in this case to have taken the steps he did.  Now and then overflowing tears would obstruct this deeply thrilling and most remarkable story she was telling of her brother, but her memory seemed quickened by the sadness of the occasion, and she was enabled to recall vividly the chief events connected with his past history.  Thus his agency in this movement, which cost him his life, could readily enough be accounted for, and the individuals who listened attentively to the story were prepared to fully appreciate his character, for, prior to offering his services in this mission, he had been a stranger to them.

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The Underground Railroad from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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