The Underground Railroad eBook

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

Bill providentially escaped from a well-known cripple, whom he undertook to describe as a “very sneaking-looking man, medium size, smooth face; a wealthy farmer, who owned eighteen or twenty head of slaves, and was Judge of the Orphans’ Court.”  “He sells slaves occasionally.”  “My mistress was a very large, rough, Irish-looking woman, with a very bad disposition; it appeared like as if she hated to see a ‘nigger,’ and she was always wanting her husband to have some one whipped, and she was a member of the Methodist Church.  My master was a trustee in the Episcopal Church.”

In consequence of the tribulation Bill had experienced under his Christian master and mistress, he had been led to disbelieve in the Protestant faith altogether, and declared that he felt persuaded that it was all a “pretense,” and added that he “never went to Church; no place was provided in church for ‘niggers’ except a little pen for the coachmen and waiters.”

Bill had been honored with the post of “head man on the place,” but of this office he was not proud.

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$100 REWARD.—­Ran away from the subscriber on Saturday night, Negro Man JIM BELLE.  Jim is about five feet ten inches high, black color, about 26 years of age has a down look; speaks slow when spoken to; he has large, thick lips, and a mustache.  He was formerly owned by Edward Stansbury, late of Baltimore county, and purchased by Edward Worthington, near Reisterstown, in Baltimore county, at the late Stansbury’s sale, who sold him to B.M. and W.L.  Campbell, of Baltimore city, of whom I purchased Jim on the 13th of June last.  His wife lives with her mother, Ann Robertson, in Corn Alley, between Lee and Hill streets, Baltimore city, where he has other relations, and where he is making his way.  I will give the above reward, no matter where taken, so he is brought home or secured in jail so I get him again.

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    near Upper Marlboro’, Prince George’s county, Md.

Mr. Zachariah Berry, who manifested so much interest in Jim, may be until this hour in ignorance of the cause of his running off without asking leave, etc.  Jim stated, that he was once sold and flogged unmercifully simply for calling his master “Mr.,” instead of master, and he alleged that this was the secret of his eyes being opened and his mind nerved to take advantage of the Underground Rail Road.

While it may not now do Zachariah Berry much good to learn this secret, it may, nevertheless, be of some interest to those who were of near kin to Jim to glean even so small a ray of light.

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Project Gutenberg
The Underground Railroad from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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