At the time of the doctor’s escape, in 1855, he was thirty-one years of age, a man of medium size, and about as purely colored, as could readily be found, with a full share of self-esteem and pluck.
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FROM LOUDON CO., VA., NORFOLK, BALTIMORE, MD., PETERSBURG,
ABOUT THE MONTH OF JUNE, 1855.
Arrival 1st. David Bennett and family.
Arrival 2d. Henry Washington, alias Anthony Hanly, and Henry Stewart.
Arrival 3d. William Nelson and wife, William Thomas, Louisa Bell, and
Arrival 4th. Maria Joiner.
Arrival 5th. Richard Green and his brother George.
Arrival 6th. Henry Cromwell.
Arrival 7th. Henry Bohm.
Arrival 8th. Ralph Whiting, James H. Forman, Anthony Atkinson,
Arthur Jones, Isaiah Nixon, Joseph Harris, John Morris, Henry Hodges.
Arrival 9th. Robert Jones and wife.
The first arrival to be here noticed consisted of David Bennett, and his wife Martha, with their two children, a little boy named George, and a nameless babe one month old. This family journeyed from Loudon county, Va. David, the husband, had been in bonds under Captain James Taylor. Martha, the wife, and her two children were owned by George Carter. Martha’s master was represented as a very barbarous and cruel man to the slaves. He made a common practice of flogging females when stripped naked. This was the emphatic testimony of Martha. Martha declared that she had been so stripped, and flogged by him after her marriage. The story of this interesting young mother, who was about twenty-seven years of age, was painful to the ear, particularly as the earnestness and intelligence of this poor, bruised, and mangled soul bore such strong evidence to the truthfulness of her statements. During the painful interview the mind would involuntarily picture this demon, only as the representative of thousands in the South using the same relentless sway over men and women; and this fleeing victim and her little ones, before escaping, only as sharers of a common lot with many other mothers and children, whose backs were daily subjected to the lash. If on such an occasion it was hard to find fitting words of sympathy, or adequate expressions of indignation, the pleasure of being permitted to give aid and comfort to such was in part a compensation and a relief. David, the husband of this woman, was about thirty-two years of age. No further notice was made of him.
Arrival No. 2 consisted of Henry Washington, alias Anthony Hanly, and Henry Stewart. Henry left Norfolk and a “very mild master,” known by the name of “Seth March,” out of sheer disgust for the patriarchal institution. Directly after speaking of his master in such flattering terms he qualified the “mild,” &c. by adding that he was excessively close in money matters. In proof of this assertion, Henry declared, that out