Manuel Pereira eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 262 pages of information about Manuel Pereira.

“Recog. 1.31; Constable, $1, 2.31”

“Commitment and Discharge, 1.00”

“20 days’ Jail Maintenance of John Baptiste Pamerlie, at 30 cts. per day, $6.00

“Received payment, 13.31 J. D., S. C. D. Per Charles E. Kanapeaux, Clerk.”

Thus ended the scene.  The little darkie might have said when he was in jail, “Je meurs de faim, et l’on ne m’apport‚ rien;” and when he left, “Il est faufite avec les chevaliers d’industrie.”

CHAPTER XXIV.

The Janson condemned.

We must now return to Manuel.  He was in close confinement, through Mr. Grimshaw’s orders.  Tommy continued to bring him food from day to day, but was not allowed to see him.  The mate and several of the crew were also refused admittance to him.  This was carrying power to an unnecessary limit, and inflicting a wanton punishment without proper cause, at the same time exhibiting a flagrant disrespect for personal feelings.  Tommy did not report the affair to the Captain, lest it should be misconstrued, and worse punishment be inflicted; but when the men were refused, they naturally mistrusted something, and made inquiries of the jailer, who readily gave them all the information in his power concerning the affair, and his orders.  This they reported to the Captain, who immediately repaired to the consul’s office, where he found Mr. Mathew reading a note which he had just received from Manuel.  It stated his grievances in a clear and distinct manner, and begged the protection of that government under whose flag he sailed, but said nothing about his provisions.  The consul, accompanied by the Captain, proceeded to the sheriff’s office, but could get no satisfaction.  “I never consider circumstances when prisoners violate the rules of the jail,—­he must await my orders! but I shall keep him closely confined for two weeks, at least,” said Mr. Grimshaw.

This incensed the consul still more, for he saw the manner in which a clique of officials were determined to show their arbitrary power.  It was impossible for him to remain indifferent to this matter, affecting, as it did, the life and liberty of his fellow-countryman.  He could invoke no sympathy for the man, and the extent of punishment to which he had been subjected was evidently excited by vindictive feelings.  He applied for a writ of habeas corpus,—­but mark the result.

The Captain proceeded to the jail, and demanded to see his steward; the jailer hesitating at first, at length granted his permission.  He found Manuel locked up in a little, unwholesome cell, with scarcely a glimmer of light to mark the distinction of day and night; and so pale and emaciated, that had he met him in the street he should scarcely have recognised him.  “Gracious God!  What crime could have brought such an excess of punishment upon you?” inquired the Captain.

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Manuel Pereira from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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