John was about twenty-seven years of age, smart, possessed good manners, and a mulatto.
Lawrence was about twenty-three years of age, tall and slender, of dark complexion, but bright intellectually. With Lawrence times had been pretty rough. Dr. Isaac Winslow of Alexandria was accused of defrauding Lawrence of his hire. “He was anything else but a gentleman,” said Lawrence. “He was not a fair man no way, and his wife was worse than he was, and she had a daughter worse than herself.”
“Last Sunday a week my master collared me, for my insolence he said, and told me that he would sell me right off. I was tied and put up stairs for safe keeping. I was tied for about eight hours. I then untied myself, broke out of prison, and made for the Underground Rail Road immediately.”
Lawrence gave a most interesting account of his life of bondage, and of the doctor and his family. He was overjoyed at the manner in which he had defeated the doctor, and so was the Committee.
* * * * *
HON. L. McLANE’S PROPERTY, SOON AFTER HIS DEATH, TRAVELS via THE UNDERGROUND RAIL ROAD.—WILLIAM KNIGHT, ESQ., LOSES A SUPERIOR “ARTICLE.”
JIM SCOTT, TOM PENNINGTON, SAM SCOTT, BILL SCOTT, ABE BACON, AND JACK WELLS.
An unusual degree of pleasure was felt in welcoming this party of young men, not because they were any better than others, or because they had suffered more, but simply because they were found to possess certain knowledge and experience of slave life, as it existed under the government of the chivalry; such information could not always be obtained from those whose lot had been cast among ordinary slave-holders. Consequently the Committee interviewed them closely, and in point of intellect found them to be above the average run of slaves. As they were then entered on the record, so in like manner are the notes made of them transferred to these pages.
Jim was about nineteen years of age, well grown, black, and of prepossessing appearance. The organ of hope seemed very strong in him. Jim had been numbered with the live stock of the late Hon. L. McLane, who had been called to give an account of his stewardship about two months before Jim and his companions “took out.”
As to general usage, he made no particular charge against his distinguished master; he had, however, not been living under his immediate patriarchal government, but had been hired out to a farmer by the name of James Dodson, with whom he experienced life “sometimes hard and sometimes smooth,” to use his own words. The reason of his leaguing with his fellow-servants to abandon the old prison-house, was traceable to the rumor, that he and some others were to appear on the stage, or rather the auction-block, in Baltimore, the coming Spring.