The Underground Railroad eBook

William Still
This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 1,446 pages of information about The Underground Railroad.

But this was not all.  Sam declared his master had threatened to shoot him a short while before he left.  This was the last straw on the camel’s back.  Sam’s heart was in Canada ever after that.  In traveling he resolved that nothing should stop him.  Charles offered the same excuse as did Sam.  He had been threatened with the auction-block.  He left his mother free, but four sisters he left in chains.  As these men spoke of their tough owners and bad treatment in Slavery, they expressed their indignation at the idea that Owings, Dade and Dorsey had dared to rob them of their God-given rights.  They were only ignorant farm hands.  As they drank in the free air, the thought of their wrongs aroused all their manhood.  They were all young men, hale and stout, with strong resolutions to make Canada their future home.  The Committee encouraged them in this, and aided them for humanity’s sake.—­Mr. Robert Dade’s advertisement speaks for itself as follows: 

RAN AWAY—­On Saturday night, 20th inst., from the subscriber, living near Mount Airy P.O., Carroll county, two Negro men, PERRY and CHARLES.  Perry is quite dark, full face; is about 5 feet 8 or 9 inches high; has a scar on one of his hands, and one on his legs, caused by a cut from a scythe; 25 years old.  Charles is of a copper color, about 5 feet 9 or 10 inches high; round shouldered, with small whiskers; has one crooked finger that he cannot straighten, and a scar on his right leg, caused by the cut of a scythe; 22 years old.  I will give two hundred and fifty dollars each, if taken in the State and returned to me, or secured in some jail so that I can get them again, or a $1,000 for the two, or $500 each, if taken out of the State, and secured in some jail in this State so that I can get them again.  ROBERT DADE.

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But for their hope of liberty, their uncomfortable position could hardly have been endured by these fugitives.  William had been compelled to dig and delve, to earn bread and butter, clothing and luxuries, houses and land, education and ease for H.B.  Dickinson, of Richmond.  William smarted frequently; but what could he do?  Complaint from a slave was a crime of the deepest dye.  So William dug away mutely, but continued to think, nevertheless.  He was a man of about thirty-six years of age, of dark chestnut color, medium size, and of pleasant manners to say the least.  His owner was a tobacco manufacturer, who held some thirty slaves in his own right, besides hiring a great many others.  William was regularly employed by day in his master’s tobacco factory.  He was likewise employed, as one of the carriers of the Richmond Dispatch; the time allotted to fill the duties of this office, was however, before sunrise in the morning.  It is but just to state, in favor of his master, that William was himself the receiver of a part of the pay for this night work.  It was by this means William procured clothing and certain other necessaries.

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The Underground Railroad from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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