The Underground Railroad eBook

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

Julius, who was successful enough to bring his wife and boy with him, was a wonderful specimen of muscular proportions.  Although a young man, of but twenty-five, he weighed two hundred and twenty-five pounds; he was tall and well-formed from the crown of his head to the soles of his feet.  Nor was he all muscle by a great deal; he was well balanced as to mother wit and shrewdness.

In looking back into the pit from whence he had been delivered he could tell a very interesting story of what he had experienced, from which it was evident that he had not been an idle observer of what had passed relative to the Peculiar Institution; especially was it very certain that he had never seen anything lovely or of good report belonging to the system.  So far as his personal relations were concerned, he acknowledged that a man named Mr. Robert Hollan, had assumed to impose himself upon him as master, and that this same man had also wrongfully claimed all his time, denied him all common and special privileges; besides he had deprived him of an education, etc., which looked badly enough before he left Maryland, but in the light of freedom, and from a free State stand-point, the idea that “man’s inhumanity to man” should assume such gigantic proportions as to cause him to seize his fellow-man and hold him in perpetual bondage, was marvellous in the extreme.

Julius had been kept in the dark in Maryland, but on free soil, the light rushed in upon his astonished vision to a degree almost bewildering.  That his master was a man of “means and pretty high standing”—­Julius thought was not much to his credit since they were obtained from unpaid labor.  In his review allusion was made not only to his master, but also to his mistress, in which he said that she was “a quarrelsome and crabbed woman, middling stout.”  In order to show a reason why he left as he did, he stated that “there had been a fuss two or three times” previous to the escape, and it had been rumored “that somebody would have to be sold soon.”  This was what did the mischief so far as the “running away” was concerned.  Julius’ color was nearly jet black, and his speech was very good considering his lack of book learning; his bearing was entirely self-possessed and commendable.

His wife and boy shared fully in his affections, and seemed well pleased to have their faces turned Canada-ward.  It is hardly necessary to say more of them here.

Henry was about twenty-three years of age, of an active turn, brown skin, and had given the question of freedom his most serious attention, as his actions proved.  While he could neither read nor write, he could think.  From the manner in which he expressed himself, with regard to Robert Hollan, no man in the whole range of his recollections will be longer remembered than he; his enthralment while under Hollan will hardly ever be forgotten.  Any being who had been thus deprived of his rights, could hardly fail to command sympathy; in cases like this, however, the sight and language of such an one was extremely impressive.

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The Underground Railroad from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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