Nancy was also from Richmond, and came in the same boat with Lewis. She represented the most “likely-looking female bond servants.” Indeed her appearance recommended her at once. She was neat, modest, and well-behaved—with a good figure and the picture of health, with a countenance beaming with joy and gladness, notwithstanding the late struggles and sufferings through which she had passed. Young as she was, she had seen much of slavery, and had, doubtless, profited by the lessons thereof. At all events, it was through cruel treatment, having been frequently beaten after she had passed her eighteenth year, that she was prompted to seek freedom. It was so common for her mistress to give way to unbridled passions that Nancy never felt safe. Under the severest infliction of punishment she was not allowed to complain. Neither from mistress nor master had she any reason to expect mercy or leniency—indeed she saw no way of escape but by the Underground Rail Road.
It was true that the master, Mr. William Bears, was a Yankee from Connecticut, and his wife a member of the Episcopal Church, but Nancy’s yoke seemed none the lighter for all that. Fully persuaded that she would never find her lot any better while remaining in their hands, she accepted the advice and aid of a young man to whom she was engaged; he was shrewd enough to find an agent in Richmond, with whom he entered into a covenant to have Nancy brought away. With a cheerful heart the journey was undertaken in the manner aforesaid, and she safely reached the Committee. Her mother, one brother and a sister she had to leave in Richmond. One thousand dollars were lost in the departure of Nancy.
Having been accommodated and aided by the Committee, they were forwarded to Canada. Lewis wrote back repeatedly and expressed himself very gratefully for favors received, as will be seen by the appended letters from him:
TORONTO, April 25, 1857.
To MR. WM. STILL—Dear Sir:—I take this opportunity of addressing these few lines to inform you that I am well and hope that they may find you and your family enjoying the same good health. Please to give my love to you and your family. I had a very pleasant trip from your house that morning. Dear sir, you would oblige me much, if you have not sent that box to Mr. Robinson, to open it and take out the little yellow box that I tied up in the large one and send it on by express to me in Toronto. Lift up a few of the things and you will find it near the top. All the clothes that I have are in that box and I stand in need of them. You would oblige me much by so doing. I stopped at Mr. Jones’ in Elmira, and was very well treated by him while there. I am now in Toronto and doing very well at present. I am very thankful to you and your family for the attention you paid to me while at your house. I wish you would see Mr. Ormsted and ask him if he has not some things for Mr. Anthony Loney, and if he has, please send