Chains Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Why has Miss Mary Finch's nephew come to Rhode Island?

It is the day of Miss Mary Finch's funeral. Her nephew has come to Rhode Island to settle her estate and has taken charge of Miss Finch's two slaves, sisters Isabel and Ruth.

2. What are Isabel and Ruth doing in the funeral procession, and what is important about the day for them?

Isabel, who is thirteen-years-old walks behind the carriage pulling Miss Finch's coffin to the cemetery while her younger sister rides with the carriage driver because she suffers from epilepsy and is mentally impaired. Today is the day they've been waiting for: the day the girls are to be set free.

3. Why does Isabel ask the pastor for work?

Immediately after Miss Finch's funeral, Isabel boldly walks up to the pastor and asks his help in finding work. Miss Finch freed the girls in her will and Isabel is unsure where she should go next.

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