Of Tom's New Master,

and Various Other Matters

Since the thread of our humble hero's life has now become interwoven with that of higher ones,

it is necessary to give some brief introduction to them.

Augustine St. Clare was the son of a wealthy planter of Louisiana.

The family had its origin in Canada.

Of two brothers,

very similar in temperament and character,

one had settled on a flourishing farm in Vermont,

and the other became an opulent planter in Louisiana.

The mother of Augustine was a Huguenot French lady,

whose family had emigrated to Louisiana during the days of its early settlement.

Augustine and another brother were the only children of their parents.

Having inherited from his mother an exceeding delicacy of constitution,

he was,

at the instance of physicians,

during many years of his boyhood,

sent to the care of his uncle in Vermont,

in order that his constitution might be strengthened by the cold of a more bracing climate.

In childhood,

he was remarkable for an extreme and marked sensitiveness of character,

more akin to the softness of woman than the ordinary hardness of his own sex.



overgrew this softness with the rough bark of manhood,

and but few knew how living and fresh it still lay at the core.

His talents were of the very first order,

although his mind showed a preference always for the ideal and the aesthetic,

and there was about him that repugnance to the actual business of life which is the common result of this balance of the faculties.

Soon after the completion of his college course,

his whole nature was kindled into one intense and passionate effervescence of romantic passion.

His hour came,

--the hour that comes only once;

his star rose in the horizon,

--that star that rises so often in vain,

to be remembered only as a thing of dreams;

and it rose for him in vain.

To drop the figure,

--he saw and won the love of a high-minded and beautiful woman,

in one of the northern states,

and they were affianced.

He returned south to make arrangements for their marriage,


most unexpectedly,

his letters were returned to him by mail,

with a short note from her guardian,

stating to him that ere this reached him the lady would be the wife of another.

Stung to madness,

he vainly hoped,

as many another has done,

to fling the whole thing from his heart by one desperate effort.

Too proud to supplicate or seek explanation,

he threw himself at once into a whirl of fashionable society,

and in a fortnight from the time of the fatal letter was the accepted lover of the reigning belle of the season;

and as soon as arrangements could be made,

he became the husband of a fine figure,

a pair of bright dark eyes,

and a hundred thousand dollars;


of course,

everybody thought him a happy fellow.

The married couple were enjoying their honeymoon,

and entertaining a brilliant circle of friends in their splendid villa,

near Lake Pontchartrain,


one day,

a letter was brought to him in -that- well-remembered writing.

It was handed to him while he was in full tide of gay and successful conversation,

in a whole room-full of company.

He turned deadly pale when he saw the writing,

but still preserved his composure,

and finished the playful warfare of badinage which he was at the moment carrying on with a lady opposite;


a short time after,

was missed from the circle.

In his room,


he opened and read the letter,

now worse than idle and useless to be read.

It was from her,

giving a long account of a persecution to which she had been exposed by her guardian's family,

to lead her to unite herself with their son: and she related how,

for a long time,

his letters had ceased to arrive;

how she had written time and again,

till she became weary and doubtful;

how her health had failed under her anxieties,

and how,

at last,

she had discovered the whole fraud which had been practised on them both.

The letter ended with expressions of hope and thankfulness,

and professions of undying affection,

which were more bitter than death to the unhappy young man.

He wrote to her immediately:

"I have received yours,

--but too late.

I believed all I heard.

I was desperate.

-I am married-,

and all is over.

Only forget,

--it is all that remains for either of us."

And thus ended the whole romance and ideal of life for Augustine St. Clare.

But the -real- remained,

--the -real-,

like the flat,


oozy tide-mud,

when the blue sparkling wave,

with all its company of gliding boats and white-winged ships,

its music of oars and chiming waters,

has gone down,

and there it lies,




--exceedingly real.

Of course,

in a novel,

people's hearts break,

and they die,

and that is the end of it;

and in a story this is very convenient.

But in real life we do not die when all that makes life bright dies to us.

There is a most busy and important round of eating,









and all that makes up what is commonly called -living-,

yet to be gone through;

and this yet remained to Augustine.

Had his wife been a whole woman,

she might yet have done something --as woman can --to mend the broken threads of life,

and weave again into a tissue of brightness.

But Marie St. Clare could not even see that they had been broken.

As before stated,

she consisted of a fine figure,

a pair of splendid eyes,

and a hundred thousand dollars;

and none of these items were precisely the ones to minister to a mind diseased.

When Augustine,

pale as death,

was found lying on the sofa,

and pleaded sudden sick-headache as the cause of his distress,

she recommended to him to smell of hartshorn;

and when the paleness and headache came on week after week,

she only said that she never thought Mr. St. Clare was sickly;

but it seems he was very liable to sick-headaches,

and that it was a very unfortunate thing for her,

because he didn't enjoy going into company with her,

and it seemed odd to go so much alone,

when they were just married.

Augustine was glad in his heart that he had married so undiscerning a woman;

but as the glosses and civilities of the honeymoon wore away,

he discovered that a beautiful young woman,

who has lived all her life to be caressed and waited on,

might prove quite a hard mistress in domestic life.

Marie never had possessed much capability of affection,

or much sensibility,

and the little that she had,

had been merged into a most intense and unconscious selfishness;

a selfishness the more hopeless,

from its quiet obtuseness,

its utter ignorance of any claims but her own.

From her infancy,

she had been surrounded with servants,

who lived only to study her caprices;

the idea that they had either feelings or rights had never dawned upon her,

even in distant perspective.

Her father,

whose only child she had been,

had never denied her anything that lay within the compass of human possibility;

and when she entered life,



and an heiress,

she had,

of course,

all the eligibles and non-eligibles of the other sex sighing at her feet,

and she had no doubt that Augustine was a most fortunate man in having obtained her.

It is a great mistake to suppose that a woman with no heart will be an easy creditor in the exchange of affection.

There is not on earth a more merciless exactor of love from others than a thoroughly selfish woman;

and the more unlovely she grows,

the more jealously and scrupulously she exacts love,

to the uttermost farthing.



St. Clare began to drop off those gallantries and small attentions which flowed at first through the habitude of courtship,

he found his sultana no way ready to resign her slave;

there were abundance of tears,


and small tempests,

there were discontents,



St. Clare was good-natured and self-indulgent,

and sought to buy off with presents and flatteries;

and when Marie became mother to a beautiful daughter,

he really felt awakened,

for a time,

to something like tenderness.

St. Clare's mother had been a woman of uncommon elevation and purity of character,

and he gave to his child his mother's name,

fondly fancying that she would prove a reproduction of her image.

The thing had been remarked with petulant jealousy by his wife,

and she regarded her husband's absorbing devotion to the child with suspicion and dislike;

all that was given to her seemed so much taken from herself.

From the time of the birth of this child,

her health gradually sunk.

A life of constant inaction,

bodily and mental,

--the friction of ceaseless ennui and discontent,

united to the ordinary weakness which attended the period of maternity,

--in course of a few years changed the blooming young belle into a yellow faded,

sickly woman,

whose time was divided among a variety of fanciful diseases,

and who considered herself,

in every sense,

the most ill-used and suffering person in existence.

There was no end of her various complaints;

but her principal forte appeared to lie in sick-headache,

which sometimes would confine her to her room three days out of six.


of course,

all family arrangements fell into the hands of servants,

St. Clare found his menage anything but comfortable.

His only daughter was exceedingly delicate,

and he feared that,

with no one to look after her and attend to her,

her health and life might yet fall a sacrifice to her mother's inefficiency.

He had taken her with him on a tour to Vermont,

and had persuaded his cousin,

Miss Ophelia St. Clare,

to return with him to his southern residence;

and they are now returning on this boat,

where we have introduced them to our readers.

And now,

while the distant domes and spires of New Orleans rise to our view,

there is yet time for an introduction to Miss Ophelia.

Whoever has travelled in the New England States will remember,

in some cool village,

the large farmhouse,

with its clean-swept grassy yard,

shaded by the dense and massive foliage of the sugar maple;

and remember the air of order and stillness,

of perpetuity and unchanging repose,

that seemed to breathe over the whole place.

Nothing lost,

or out of order;

not a picket loose in the fence,

not a particle of litter in the turfy yard,

with its clumps of lilac bushes growing up under the windows.


he will remember wide,

clean rooms,

where nothing ever seems to be doing or going to be done,

where everything is once and forever rigidly in place,

and where all household arrangements move with the punctual exactness of the old clock in the corner.

In the family "keeping-room,"

as it is termed,

he will remember the staid,

respectable old book-case,

with its glass doors,

where Rollin's History,* Milton's Paradise Lost,

Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress,

and Scott's Family Bible,** stand side by side in decorous order,

with multitudes of other books,

equally solemn and respectable.

There are no servants in the house,

but the lady in the snowy cap,

with the spectacles,

who sits sewing every afternoon among her daughters,

as if nothing ever had been done,

or were to be done,

--she and her girls,

in some long-forgotten fore part of the day,

"-did up the work-,"

and for the rest of the time,


at all hours when you would see them,

it is "-done up-."

The old kitchen floor never seems stained or spotted;

the tables,

the chairs,

and the various cooking utensils,

never seem deranged or disordered;

though three and sometimes four meals a day are got there,

though the family washing and ironing is there performed,

and though pounds of butter and cheese are in some silent and mysterious manner there brought into existence.

* -The Ancient History-,

ten volumes (1730-1738),

by the French historian Charles Rollin (1661-1741).

** -Scott's Family Bible- (1788-1792),

edited with notes by the English Biblical commentator,

Thomas Scott (1747-1821).

On such a farm,

in such a house and family,

Miss Ophelia had spent a quiet existence of some forty-five years,

when her cousin invited her to visit his southern mansion.

The eldest of a large family,

she was still considered by her father and mother as one of "the children,"

and the proposal that she should go to -Orleans- was a most momentous one to the family circle.

The old gray-headed father took down Morse's Atlas* out of the book-case,

and looked out the exact latitude and longitude;

and read Flint's Travels in the South and West,** to make up his own mind as to the nature of the country.

* -The Cerographic Atlas of the United States- (1842-1845),

by Sidney Edwards Morse (1794-1871),

son of the geographer,

Jedidiah Morse,

and brother of the painter-inventor,

Samuel F. B.


** -Recollections of the Last Ten Years- (1826) by Timothy Flint (1780-1840),

missionary of Presbyterianism to the trans-Allegheny West.

The good mother inquired,


"if Orleans wasn't an awful wicked place,"


"that it seemed to her most equal to going to the Sandwich Islands,

or anywhere among the heathen."

It was known at the minister's and at the doctor's,

and at Miss Peabody's milliner shop,

that Ophelia St. Clare was "talking about" going away down to Orleans with her cousin;

and of course the whole village could do no less than help this very important process of -talking about- the matter.

The minister,

who inclined strongly to abolitionist views,

was quite doubtful whether such a step might not tend somewhat to encourage the southerners in holding on to their slaves;

while the doctor,

who was a stanch colonizationist,

inclined to the opinion that Miss Ophelia ought to go,

to show the Orleans people that we don't think hardly of them,

after all.

He was of opinion,

in fact,

that southern people needed encouraging.

When however,

the fact that she had resolved to go was fully before the public mind,

she was solemnly invited out to tea by all her friends and neighbors for the space of a fortnight,

and her prospects and plans duly canvassed and inquired into.

Miss Moseley,

who came into the house to help to do the dress-making,

acquired daily accessions of importance from the developments with regard to Miss Ophelia's wardrobe which she had been enabled to make.

It was credibly ascertained that Squire Sinclare,

as his name was commonly contracted in the neighborhood,

had counted out fifty dollars,

and given them to Miss Ophelia,

and told her to buy any clothes she thought best;

and that two new silk dresses,

and a bonnet,

had been sent for from Boston.

As to the propriety of this extraordinary outlay,

the public mind was divided,

--some affirming that it was well enough,

all things considered,

for once in one's life,

and others stoutly affirming that the money had better have been sent to the missionaries;

but all parties agreed that there had been no such parasol seen in those parts as had been sent on from New York,

and that she had one silk dress that might fairly be trusted to stand alone,

whatever might be said of its mistress.

There were credible rumors,


of a hemstitched pocket-handkerchief;

and report even went so far as to state that Miss Ophelia had one pocket-handkerchief with lace all around it,

--it was even added that it was worked in the corners;

but this latter point was never satisfactorily ascertained,

and remains,

in fact,

unsettled to this day.

Miss Ophelia,

as you now behold her,

stands before you,

in a very shining brown linen travelling-dress,



and angular.

Her face was thin,

and rather sharp in its outlines;

the lips compressed,

like those of a person who is in the habit of making up her mind definitely on all subjects;

while the keen,

dark eyes had a peculiarly searching,

advised movement,

and travelled over everything,

as if they were looking for something to take care of.

All her movements were sharp,


and energetic;


though she was never much of a talker,

her words were remarkably direct,

and to the purpose,

when she did speak.

In her habits,

she was a living impersonation of order,


and exactness.

In punctuality,

she was as inevitable as a clock,

and as inexorable as a railroad engine;

and she held in most decided contempt and abomination anything of a contrary character.

The great sin of sins,

in her eyes,

--the sum of all evils,

--was expressed by one very common and important word in her vocabulary --"shiftlessness."

Her finale and ultimatum of contempt consisted in a very emphatic pronunciation of the word "shiftless;"

and by this she characterized all modes of procedure which had not a direct and inevitable relation to accomplishment of some purpose then definitely had in mind.

People who did nothing,

or who did not know exactly what they were going to do,

or who did not take the most direct way to accomplish what they set their hands to,

were objects of her entire contempt,

--a contempt shown less frequently by anything she said,

than by a kind of stony grimness,

as if she scorned to say anything about the matter.

As to mental cultivation,

--she had a clear,


active mind,

was well and thoroughly read in history and the older English classics,

and thought with great strength within certain narrow limits.

Her theological tenets were all made up,

labelled in most positive and distinct forms,

and put by,

like the bundles in her patch trunk;

there were just so many of them,

and there were never to be any more.



were her ideas with regard to most matters of practical life,

--such as housekeeping in all its branches,

and the various political relations of her native village.


underlying all,

deeper than anything else,

higher and broader,

lay the strongest principle of her being --conscientiousness.

Nowhere is conscience so dominant and all-absorbing as with New England women.

It is the granite formation,

which lies deepest,

and rises out,

even to the tops of the highest mountains.

Miss Ophelia was the absolute bond-slave of the "-ought-."

Once make her certain that the "path of duty,"

as she commonly phrased it,

lay in any given direction,

and fire and water could not keep her from it.

She would walk straight down into a well,

or up to a loaded cannon's mouth,

if she were only quite sure that there the path lay.

Her standard of right was so high,

so all-embracing,

so minute,

and making so few concessions to human frailty,


though she strove with heroic ardor to reach it,

she never actually did so,

and of course was burdened with a constant and often harassing sense of deficiency;

--this gave a severe and somewhat gloomy cast to her religious character.


how in the world can Miss Ophelia get along with Augustine St. Clare,






--in short,

--walking with impudent and nonchalant freedom over every one of her most cherished habits and opinions?

To tell the truth,


Miss Ophelia loved him.

When a boy,

it had been hers to teach him his catechism,

mend his clothes,

comb his hair,

and bring him up generally in the way he should go;

and her heart having a warm side to it,

Augustine had,

as he usually did with most people,

monopolized a large share of it for himself,

and therefore it was that he succeeded very easily in persuading her that the "path of duty" lay in the direction of New Orleans,

and that she must go with him to take care of Eva,

and keep everything from going to wreck and ruin during the frequent illnesses of his wife.

The idea of a house without anybody to take care of it went to her heart;

then she loved the lovely little girl,

as few could help doing;

and though she regarded Augustine as very much of a heathen,

yet she loved him,

laughed at his jokes,

and forbore with his failings,

to an extent which those who knew him thought perfectly incredible.

But what more or other is to be known of Miss Ophelia our reader must discover by a personal acquaintance.

There she is,

sitting now in her state-room,

surrounded by a mixed multitude of little and big carpet-bags,



each containing some separate responsibility which she is tying,

binding up,


or fastening,

with a face of great earnestness.



have you kept count of your things?

Of course you haven't,

--children never do: there's the spotted carpet-bag and the little blue band-box with your best bonnet,

--that's two;

then the India rubber satchel is three;

and my tape and needle box is four;

and my band-box,


and my collar-box;

and that little hair trunk,


What have you done with your sunshade?

Give it to me,

and let me put a paper round it,

and tie it to my umbrella with my shade;





we are only going up home;

--what is the use?"

"To keep it nice,


people must take care of their things,

if they ever mean to have anything;

and now,


is your thimble put up?"



I don't know."


never mind;

I'll look your box over,



two spools,




all right,

--put it in here.

What did you ever do,


when you were coming on with only your papa.

I should have thought you'd a lost everything you had."



I did lose a great many;

and then,

when we stopped anywhere,

papa would buy some more of whatever it was."

"Mercy on us,


--what a way!"

"It was a very easy way,


said Eva.

"It's a dreadful shiftless one,"

said aunty.



what'll you do now?"

said Eva;

"that trunk is too full to be shut down."

"It -must- shut down,"

said aunty,

with the air of a general,

as she squeezed the things in,

and sprung upon the lid;

--still a little gap remained about the mouth of the trunk.

"Get up here,


said Miss Ophelia,


"what has been done can be done again.

This trunk has -got to be- shut and locked --there are no two ways about it."

And the trunk,



by this resolute statement,

gave in.

The hasp snapped sharply in its hole,

and Miss Ophelia turned the key,

and pocketed it in triumph.

"Now we're ready.

Where's your papa?

I think it time this baggage was set out.

Do look out,


and see if you see your papa."



he's down the other end of the gentlemen's cabin,

eating an orange."

"He can't know how near we are coming,"

said aunty;

"hadn't you better run and speak to him?"

"Papa never is in a hurry about anything,"

said Eva,

"and we haven't come to the landing.

Do step on the guards,



there's our house,

up that street!"

The boat now began,

with heavy groans,

like some vast,

tired monster,

to prepare to push up among the multiplied steamers at the levee.

Eva joyously pointed out the various spires,


and way-marks,

by which she recognized her native city.




very fine,"

said Miss Ophelia.

"But mercy on us!

the boat has stopped!

where is your father?"

And now ensued the usual turmoil of landing --waiters running twenty ways at once --men tugging trunks,


boxes --women anxiously calling to their children,

and everybody crowding in a dense mass to the plank towards the landing.

Miss Ophelia seated herself resolutely on the lately vanquished trunk,

and marshalling all her goods and chattels in fine military order,

seemed resolved to defend them to the last.

"Shall I take your trunk,


"Shall I take your baggage?"

"Let me

'tend to your baggage,


"Shan't I carry out these yer,


rained down upon her unheeded.

She sat with grim determination,

upright as a darning-needle stuck in a board,

holding on her bundle of umbrella and parasols,

and replying with a determination that was enough to strike dismay even into a hackman,

wondering to Eva,

in each interval,

"what upon earth her papa could be thinking of;

he couldn't have fallen over,


--but something must have happened;"

--and just as she had begun to work herself into a real distress,

he came up,

with his usually careless motion,

and giving Eva a quarter of the orange he was eating,



Cousin Vermont,

I suppose you are all ready."

"I've been ready,


nearly an hour,"

said Miss Ophelia;

"I began to be really concerned about you.

"That's a clever fellow,


said he.


the carriage is waiting,

and the crowd are now off,

so that one can walk out in a decent and Christian manner,

and not be pushed and shoved.


he added to a driver who stood behind him,

"take these things."

"I'll go and see to his putting them in,"

said Miss Ophelia.




what's the use?"

said St. Clare.


at any rate,

I'll carry this,

and this,

and this,"

said Miss Ophelia,

singling out three boxes and a small carpet-bag.

"My dear Miss Vermont,

positively you mustn't come the Green Mountains over us that way.

You must adopt at least a piece of a southern principle,

and not walk out under all that load.

They'll take you for a waiting-maid;

give them to this fellow;

he'll put them down as if they were eggs,


Miss Ophelia looked despairingly as her cousin took all her treasures from her,

and rejoiced to find herself once more in the carriage with them,

in a state of preservation.

"Where's Tom?"

said Eva.


he's on the outside,


I'm going to take Tom up to mother for a peace-offering,

to make up for that drunken fellow that upset the carriage."


Tom will make a splendid driver,

I know,"

said Eva;

"he'll never get drunk."

The carriage stopped in front of an ancient mansion,

built in that odd mixture of Spanish and French style,

of which there are specimens in some parts of New Orleans.

It was built in the Moorish fashion,

--a square building enclosing a court-yard,

into which the carriage drove through an arched gateway.

The court,

in the inside,

had evidently been arranged to gratify a picturesque and voluptuous ideality.

Wide galleries ran all around the four sides,

whose Moorish arches,

slender pillars,

and arabesque ornaments,

carried the mind back,

as in a dream,

to the reign of oriental romance in Spain.

In the middle of the court,

a fountain threw high its silvery water,

falling in a never-ceasing spray into a marble basin,

fringed with a deep border of fragrant violets.

The water in the fountain,

pellucid as crystal,

was alive with myriads of gold and silver fishes,

twinkling and darting through it like so many living jewels.

Around the fountain ran a walk,

paved with a mosaic of pebbles,

laid in various fanciful patterns;

and this,


was surrounded by turf,

smooth as green velvet,

while a carriage-drive enclosed the whole.

Two large orange-trees,

now fragrant with blossoms,

threw a delicious shade;


ranged in a circle round upon the turf,

were marble vases of arabesque sculpture,

containing the choicest flowering plants of the tropics.

Huge pomegranate trees,

with their glossy leaves and flame-colored flowers,

dark-leaved Arabian jessamines,

with their silvery stars,


luxuriant roses bending beneath their heavy abundance of flowers,

golden jessamines,

lemon-scented verbenum,

all united their bloom and fragrance,

while here and there a mystic old aloe,

with its strange,

massive leaves,

sat looking like some old enchanter,

sitting in weird grandeur among the more perishable bloom and fragrance around it.

The galleries that surrounded the court were festooned with a curtain of some kind of Moorish stuff,

and could be drawn down at pleasure,

to exclude the beams of the sun.

On the whole,

the appearance of the place was luxurious and romantic.

As the carriage drove in,

Eva seemed like a bird ready to burst from a cage,

with the wild eagerness of her delight.


isn't it beautiful,


my own dear,

darling home!"

she said to Miss Ophelia.

"Isn't it beautiful?"

"'T is a pretty place,"

said Miss Ophelia,

as she alighted;

"though it looks rather old and heathenish to me."

Tom got down from the carriage,

and looked about with an air of calm,

still enjoyment.

The negro,

it must be remembered,

is an exotic of the most gorgeous and superb countries of the world,

and he has,

deep in his heart,

a passion for all that is splendid,


and fanciful;

a passion which,

rudely indulged by an untrained taste,

draws on them the ridicule of the colder and more correct white race.

St. Clare,

who was in heart a poetical voluptuary,

smiled as Miss Ophelia made her remark on his premises,


turning to Tom,

who was standing looking round,

his beaming black face perfectly radiant with admiration,

he said,


my boy,

this seems to suit you."



it looks about the right thing,"

said Tom.

All this passed in a moment,

while trunks were being hustled off,

hackman paid,

and while a crowd,

of all ages and sizes,



and children,

--came running through the galleries,

both above and below to see Mas'r come in.

Foremost among them was a highly-dressed young mulatto man,

evidently a very -distingue- personage,

attired in the ultra extreme of the mode,

and gracefully waving a scented cambric handkerchief in his hand.

This personage had been exerting himself,

with great alacrity,

in driving all the flock of domestics to the other end of the verandah.


all of you.

I am ashamed of you,"

he said,

in a tone of authority.

"Would you intrude on Master's domestic relations,

in the first hour of his return?"

All looked abashed at this elegant speech,

delivered with quite an air,

and stood huddled together at a respectful distance,

except two stout porters,

who came up and began conveying away the baggage.

Owing to Mr. Adolph's systematic arrangements,

when St. Clare turned round from paying the hackman,

there was nobody in view but Mr. Adolph himself,

conspicuous in satin vest,

gold guard-chain,

and white pants,

and bowing with inexpressible grace and suavity.



is it you?"

said his master,

offering his hand to him;

"how are you,


while Adolph poured forth,

with great fluency,

an extemporary speech,

which he had been preparing,

with great care,

for a fortnight before.



said St. Clare,

passing on,

with his usual air of negligent drollery,

"that's very well got up,


See that the baggage is well bestowed.

I'll come to the people in a minute;"


so saying,

he led Miss Ophelia to a large parlor that opened on the verandah.

While this had been passing,

Eva had flown like a bird,

through the porch and parlor,

to a little boudoir opening likewise on the verandah.

A tall,


sallow woman,

half rose from a couch on which she was reclining.


said Eva,

in a sort of a rapture,

throwing herself on her neck,

and embracing her over and over again.

"That'll do,

--take care,



you make my head ache,"

said the mother,

after she had languidly kissed her.

St. Clare came in,

embraced his wife in true,


husbandly fashion,

and then presented to her his cousin.

Marie lifted her large eyes on her cousin with an air of some curiosity,

and received her with languid politeness.

A crowd of servants now pressed to the entry door,

and among them a middle-aged mulatto woman,

of very respectable appearance,

stood foremost,

in a tremor of expectation and joy,

at the door.


there's Mammy!"

said Eva,

as she flew across the room;


throwing herself into her arms,

she kissed her repeatedly.

This woman did not tell her that she made her head ache,


on the contrary,

she hugged her,

and laughed,

and cried,

till her sanity was a thing to be doubted of;

and when released from her,

Eva flew from one to another,

shaking hands and kissing,

in a way that Miss Ophelia afterwards declared fairly turned her stomach.


said Miss Ophelia,

"you southern children can do something that -I- couldn't."




said St. Clare.


I want to be kind to everybody,

and I wouldn't have anything hurt;

but as to kissing --"


said St. Clare,

"that you're not up to,



that's it.

How can she?"

St. Clare laughed,

as he went into the passage.



what's to pay out here?


you all --Mammy,



Sukey --glad to see Mas'r?"

he said,

as he went shaking hands from one to another.

"Look out for the babies!"

he added,

as he stumbled over a sooty little urchin,

who was crawling upon all fours.

"If I step upon anybody,


'em mention it."

There was an abundance of laughing and blessing Mas'r,

as St. Clare distributed small pieces of change among them.



take yourselves off,

like good boys and girls,"

he said;

and the whole assemblage,

dark and light,

disappeared through a door into a large verandah,

followed by Eva,

who carried a large satchel,

which she had been filling with apples,





and toys of every description,

during her whole homeward journey.

As St. Clare turned to go back his eye fell upon Tom,

who was standing uneasily,

shifting from one foot to the other,

while Adolph stood negligently leaning against the banisters,

examining Tom through an opera-glass,

with an air that would have done credit to any dandy living.


you puppy,"

said his master,

striking down the opera glass;

"is that the way you treat your company?

Seems to me,


he added,

laying his finger on the elegant figured satin vest that Adolph was sporting,

"seems to me that's -my- vest."



this vest all stained with wine;

of course,

a gentleman in Master's standing never wears a vest like this.

I understood I was to take it.

It does for a poor nigger-fellow,

like me."

And Adolph tossed his head,

and passed his fingers through his scented hair,

with a grace.


that's it,

is it?"

said St. Clare,




I'm going to show this Tom to his mistress,

and then you take him to the kitchen;

and mind you don't put on any of your airs to him.

He's worth two such puppies as you."

"Master always will have his joke,"

said Adolph,


"I'm delighted to see Master in such spirits."



said St. Clare,


Tom entered the room.

He looked wistfully on the velvet carpets,

and the before unimagined splendors of mirrors,



and curtains,


like the Queen of Sheba before Solomon,

there was no more spirit in him.

He looked afraid even to set his feet down.

"See here,


said St. Clare to his wife,

"I've bought you a coachman,

at last,

to order.

I tell you,

he's a regular hearse for blackness and sobriety,

and will drive you like a funeral,

if you want.

Open your eyes,


and look at him.


don't say I never think about you when I'm gone."

Marie opened her eyes,

and fixed them on Tom,

without rising.

"I know he'll get drunk,"

she said.


he's warranted a pious and sober article."


I hope he may turn out well,"

said the lady;

"it's more than I expect,



said St. Clare,

"show Tom down stairs;


mind yourself,"

he added;

"remember what I told you."

Adolph tripped gracefully forward,

and Tom,

with lumbering tread,

went after.

"He's a perfect behemoth!"

said Marie.




said St. Clare,

seating himself on a stool beside her sofa,

"be gracious,

and say something pretty to a fellow."

"You've been gone a fortnight beyond the time,"

said the lady,



you know I wrote you the reason."

"Such a short,

cold letter!"

said the lady.

"Dear me!

the mail was just going,

and it had to be that or nothing."

"That's just the way,


said the lady;

"always something to make your journeys long,

and letters short."

"See here,


he added,

drawing an elegant velvet case out of his pocket,

and opening it,

"here's a present I got for you in New York."

It was a daguerreotype,

clear and soft as an engraving,

representing Eva and her father sitting hand in hand.

Marie looked at it with a dissatisfied air.

"What made you sit in such an awkward position?"

she said.


the position may be a matter of opinion;

but what do you think of the likeness?"

"If you don't think anything of my opinion in one case,

I suppose you wouldn't in another,"

said the lady,

shutting the daguerreotype.

"Hang the woman!"

said St. Clare,


but aloud he added,




what do you think of the likeness?

Don't be nonsensical,


"It's very inconsiderate of you,

St. Clare,"

said the lady,

"to insist on my talking and looking at things.

You know I've been lying all day with the sick-headache;

and there's been such a tumult made ever since you came,

I'm half dead."

"You're subject to the sick-headache,


said Miss Ophelia,

suddenly rising from the depths of the large arm-chair,

where she had sat quietly,

taking an inventory of the furniture,

and calculating its expense.


I'm a perfect martyr to it,"

said the lady.

"Juniper-berry tea is good for sick-headache,"

said Miss Ophelia;

"at least,


Deacon Abraham Perry's wife,

used to say so;

and she was a great nurse."

"I'll have the first juniper-berries that get ripe in our garden by the lake brought in for that special purpose,"

said St. Clare,

gravely pulling the bell as he did so;



you must be wanting to retire to your apartment,

and refresh yourself a little,

after your journey.


he added,

"tell Mammy to come here."

The decent mulatto woman whom Eva had caressed so rapturously soon entered;

she was dressed neatly,

with a high red and yellow turban on her head,

the recent gift of Eva,

and which the child had been arranging on her head.


said St. Clare,

"I put this lady under your care;

she is tired,

and wants rest;

take her to her chamber,

and be sure she is made comfortable,"

and Miss Ophelia disappeared in the rear of Mammy.


Tom's Mistress and Her Opinions

"And now,


said St. Clare,

"your golden days are dawning.

Here is our practical,

business-like New England cousin,

who will take the whole budget of cares off your shoulders,

and give you time to refresh yourself,

and grow young and handsome.

The ceremony of delivering the keys had better come off forthwith."

This remark was made at the breakfast-table,

a few mornings after Miss Ophelia had arrived.

"I'm sure she's welcome,"

said Marie,

leaning her head languidly on her hand.

"I think she'll find one thing,

if she does,

and that is,

that it's we mistresses that are the slaves,

down here."



she will discover that,

and a world of wholesome truths besides,

no doubt,"

said St. Clare.

"Talk about our keeping slaves,

as if we did it for our -convenience-,"

said Marie.

"I'm sure,

if we consulted -that-,

we might let them all go at once."

Evangeline fixed her large,

serious eyes on her mother's face,

with an earnest and perplexed expression,

and said,


"What do you keep them for,


"I don't know,

I'm sure,

except for a plague;

they are the plague of my life.

I believe that more of my ill health is caused by them than by any one thing;

and ours,

I know,

are the very worst that ever anybody was plagued with."




you've got the blues,

this morning,"

said St. Clare.

"You know

't isn't so.

There's Mammy,

the best creature living,

--what could you do without her?"

"Mammy is the best I ever knew,"

said Marie;

"and yet Mammy,


is selfish --dreadfully selfish;

it's the fault of the whole race."

"Selfishness -is- a dreadful fault,"

said St. Clare,




there's Mammy,"

said Marie,

"I think it's selfish of her to sleep so sound nights;

she knows I need little attentions almost every hour,

when my worst turns are on,

and yet she's so hard to wake.

I absolutely am worse,

this very morning,

for the efforts I had to make to wake her last night."

"Hasn't she sat up with you a good many nights,



said Eva.

"How should you know that?"

said Marie,


"she's been complaining,

I suppose."

"She didn't complain;

she only told me what bad nights you'd had,

--so many in succession."

"Why don't you let Jane or Rosa take her place,

a night or two,"

said St. Clare,

"and let her rest?"

"How can you propose it?"

said Marie.

"St. Clare,

you really are inconsiderate.

So nervous as I am,

the least breath disturbs me;

and a strange hand about me would drive me absolutely frantic.

If Mammy felt the interest in me she ought to,

she'd wake easier,

--of course,

she would.

I've heard of people who had such devoted servants,

but it never was -my- luck;"

and Marie sighed.

Miss Ophelia had listened to this conversation with an air of shrewd,

observant gravity;

and she still kept her lips tightly compressed,

as if determined fully to ascertain her longitude and position,

before she committed herself.


Mammy has a -sort- of goodness,"

said Marie;

"she's smooth and respectful,

but she's selfish at heart.


she never will be done fidgeting and worrying about that husband of hers.

You see,

when I was married and came to live here,

of course,

I had to bring her with me,

and her husband my father couldn't spare.

He was a blacksmith,


of course,

very necessary;

and I thought and said,

at the time,

that Mammy and he had better give each other up,

as it wasn't likely to be convenient for them ever to live together again.

I wish,


I'd insisted on it,

and married Mammy to somebody else;

but I was foolish and indulgent,

and didn't want to insist.

I told Mammy,

at the time,

that she mustn't ever expect to see him more than once or twice in her life again,

for the air of father's place doesn't agree with my health,

and I can't go there;

and I advised her to take up with somebody else;

but no --she wouldn't.

Mammy has a kind of obstinacy about her,

in spots,

that everybody don't see as I do."

"Has she children?"

said Miss Ophelia.


she has two."

"I suppose she feels the separation from them?"


of course,

I couldn't bring them.

They were little dirty things --I couldn't have them about;



they took up too much of her time;

but I believe that Mammy has always kept up a sort of sulkiness about this.

She won't marry anybody else;

and I do believe,


though she knows how necessary she is to me,

and how feeble my health is,

she would go back to her husband tomorrow,

if she only could.

I -do-,


said Marie;

"they are just so selfish,


the best of them."

"It's distressing to reflect upon,"

said St. Clare,


Miss Ophelia looked keenly at him,

and saw the flush of mortification and repressed vexation,

and the sarcastic curl of the lip,

as he spoke.


Mammy has always been a pet with me,"

said Marie.

"I wish some of your northern servants could look at her closets of dresses,

--silks and muslins,

and one real linen cambric,

she has hanging there.

I've worked sometimes whole afternoons,

trimming her caps,

and getting her ready to go to a party.

As to abuse,

she don't know what it is.

She never was whipped more than once or twice in her whole life.

She has her strong coffee or her tea every day,

with white sugar in it.

It's abominable,

to be sure;

but St. Clare will have high life below-stairs,

and they every one of them live just as they please.

The fact is,

our servants are over-indulged.

I suppose it is partly our fault that they are selfish,

and act like spoiled children;

but I've talked to St. Clare till I am tired."

"And I,


said St. Clare,

taking up the morning paper.


the beautiful Eva,

had stood listening to her mother,

with that expression of deep and mystic earnestness which was peculiar to her.

She walked softly round to her mother's chair,

and put her arms round her neck.



what now?"

said Marie.


couldn't I take care of you one night --just one?

I know I shouldn't make you nervous,

and I shouldn't sleep.

I often lie awake nights,

thinking --"



child --nonsense!"

said Marie;

"you are such a strange child!"

"But may I,


I think,"

she said,


"that Mammy isn't well.

She told me her head ached all the time,



that's just one of Mammy's fidgets!

Mammy is just like all the rest of them --makes such a fuss about every little headache or finger-ache;

it'll never do to encourage it --never!

I'm principled about this matter,"

said she,

turning to Miss Ophelia;

"you'll find the necessity of it.

If you encourage servants in giving way to every little disagreeable feeling,

and complaining of every little ailment,

you'll have your hands full.

I never complain myself --nobody knows what I endure.

I feel it a duty to bear it quietly,

and I do."

Miss Ophelia's round eyes expressed an undisguised amazement at this peroration,

which struck St. Clare as so supremely ludicrous,

that he burst into a loud laugh.

"St. Clare always laughs when I make the least allusion to my ill health,"

said Marie,

with the voice of a suffering martyr.

"I only hope the day won't come when he'll remember it!"

and Marie put her handkerchief to her eyes.

Of course,

there was rather a foolish silence.


St. Clare got up,

looked at his watch,

and said he had an engagement down street.

Eva tripped away after him,

and Miss Ophelia and Marie remained at the table alone.


that's just like St. Clare!"

said the latter,

withdrawing her handkerchief with somewhat of a spirited flourish when the criminal to be affected by it was no longer in sight.

"He never realizes,

never can,

never will,

what I suffer,

and have,

for years.

If I was one of the complaining sort,

or ever made any fuss about my ailments,

there would be some reason for it.

Men do get tired,


of a complaining wife.

But I've kept things to myself,

and borne,

and borne,

till St. Clare has got in the way of thinking I can bear anything."

Miss Ophelia did not exactly know what she was expected to answer to this.

While she was thinking what to say,

Marie gradually wiped away her tears,

and smoothed her plumage in a general sort of way,

as a dove might be supposed to make toilet after a shower,

and began a housewifely chat with Miss Ophelia,

concerning cupboards,




and other matters,

of which the latter was,

by common understanding,

to assume the direction,

--giving her so many cautious directions and charges,

that a head less systematic and business-like than Miss Ophelia's would have been utterly dizzied and confounded.

"And now,"

said Marie,

"I believe I've told you everything;

so that,

when my next sick turn comes on,

you'll be able to go forward entirely,

without consulting me;

--only about Eva,

--she requires watching."

"She seems to be a good child,


said Miss Ophelia;

"I never saw a better child."

"Eva's peculiar,"

said her mother,


There are things about her so singular;

she isn't like me,


a particle;"

and Marie sighed,

as if this was a truly melancholy consideration.

Miss Ophelia in her own heart said,

"I hope she isn't,"

but had prudence enough to keep it down.

"Eva always was disposed to be with servants;

and I think that well enough with some children.


I always played with father's little negroes --it never did me any harm.

But Eva somehow always seems to put herself on an equality with every creature that comes near her.

It's a strange thing about the child.

I never have been able to break her of it.

St. Clare,

I believe,

encourages her in it.

The fact is,

St. Clare indulges every creature under this roof but his own wife."

Again Miss Ophelia sat in blank silence.


there's no way with servants,"

said Marie,

"but to -put them down-,

and keep them down.

It was always natural to me,

from a child.

Eva is enough to spoil a whole house-full.

What she will do when she comes to keep house herself,

I'm sure I don't know.

I hold to being -kind- to servants --I always am;

but you must make

'em -know their place-.

Eva never does;

there's no getting into the child's head the first beginning of an idea what a servant's place is!

You heard her offering to take care of me nights,

to let Mammy sleep!

That's just a specimen of the way the child would be doing all the time,

if she was left to herself."


said Miss Ophelia,


"I suppose you think your servants are human creatures,

and ought to have some rest when they are tired."


of course.

I'm very particular in letting them have everything that comes convenient,

--anything that doesn't put one at all out of the way,

you know.

Mammy can make up her sleep,

some time or other;

there's no difficulty about that.

She's the sleepiest concern that ever I saw;



or sitting,

that creature will go to sleep,

and sleep anywhere and everywhere.

No danger but Mammy gets sleep enough.

But this treating servants as if they were exotic flowers,

or china vases,

is really ridiculous,"

said Marie,

as she plunged languidly into the depths of a voluminous and pillowy lounge,

and drew towards her an elegant cut-glass vinaigrette.

"You see,"

she continued,

in a faint and lady-like voice,

like the last dying breath of an Arabian jessamine,

or something equally ethereal,

"you see,

Cousin Ophelia,

I don't often speak of myself.

It isn't my -habit-;

't isn't agreeable to me.

In fact,

I haven't strength to do it.

But there are points where St. Clare and I differ.

St. Clare never understood me,

never appreciated me.

I think it lies at the root of all my ill health.

St. Clare means well,

I am bound to believe;

but men are constitutionally selfish and inconsiderate to woman.


at least,

is my impression."

Miss Ophelia,

who had not a small share of the genuine New England caution,

and a very particular horror of being drawn into family difficulties,

now began to foresee something of this kind impending;


composing her face into a grim neutrality,

and drawing out of her pocket about a yard and a quarter of stocking,

which she kept as a specific against what Dr. Watts asserts to be a personal habit of Satan when people have idle hands,

she proceeded to knit most energetically,

shutting her lips together in a way that said,

as plain as words could,

"You needn't try to make me speak.

I don't want anything to do with your affairs,"

--in fact,

she looked about as sympathizing as a stone lion.

But Marie didn't care for that.

She had got somebody to talk to,

and she felt it her duty to talk,

and that was enough;

and reinforcing herself by smelling again at her vinaigrette,

she went on.

"You see,

I brought my own property and servants into the connection,

when I married St. Clare,

and I am legally entitled to manage them my own way.

St. Clare had his fortune and his servants,

and I'm well enough content he should manage them his way;

but St. Clare will be interfering.

He has wild,

extravagant notions about things,

particularly about the treatment of servants.

He really does act as if he set his servants before me,

and before himself,


for he lets them make him all sorts of trouble,

and never lifts a finger.


about some things,

St. Clare is really frightful --he frightens me --good-natured as he looks,

in general.


he has set down his foot that,

come what will,

there shall not be a blow struck in this house,

except what he or I strike;

and he does it in a way that I really dare not cross him.


you may see what that leads to;

for St. Clare wouldn't raise his hand,

if every one of them walked over him,

and I --you see how cruel it would be to require me to make the exertion.


you know these servants are nothing but grown-up children."

"I don't know anything about it,

and I thank the Lord that I don't!"

said Miss Ophelia,



but you will have to know something,

and know it to your cost,

if you stay here.

You don't know what a provoking,





ungrateful set of wretches they are."

Marie seemed wonderfully supported,


when she got upon this topic;

and she now opened her eyes,

and seemed quite to forget her languor.

"You don't know,

and you can't,

the daily,

hourly trials that beset a housekeeper from them,

everywhere and every way.

But it's no use to complain to St. Clare.

He talks the strangest stuff.

He says we have made them what they are,

and ought to bear with them.

He says their faults are all owing to us,

and that it would be cruel to make the fault and punish it too.

He says we shouldn't do any better,

in their place;

just as if one could reason from them to us,

you know."

"Don't you believe that the Lord made them of one blood with us?"

said Miss Ophelia,



indeed not I!

A pretty story,


They are a degraded race."

"Don't you think they've got immortal souls?"

said Miss Ophelia,

with increasing indignation.



said Marie,



of course --nobody doubts that.

But as to putting them on any sort of equality with us,

you know,

as if we could be compared,


it's impossible!


St. Clare really has talked to me as if keeping Mammy from her husband was like keeping me from mine.

There's no comparing in this way.

Mammy couldn't have the feelings that I should.

It's a different thing altogether,

--of course,

it is,

--and yet St. Clare pretends not to see it.

And just as if Mammy could love her little dirty babies as I love Eva!

Yet St. Clare once really and soberly tried to persuade me that it was my duty,

with my weak health,

and all I suffer,

to let Mammy go back,

and take somebody else in her place.

That was a little too much even for -me- to bear.

I don't often show my feelings,

I make it a principle to endure everything in silence;

it's a wife's hard lot,

and I bear it.

But I did break out,

that time;

so that he has never alluded to the subject since.

But I know by his looks,

and little things that he says,

that he thinks so as much as ever;

and it's so trying,

so provoking!"

Miss Ophelia looked very much as if she was afraid she should say something;

but she rattled away with her needles in a way that had volumes of meaning in it,

if Marie could only have understood it.


you just see,"

she continued,

"what you've got to manage.

A household without any rule;

where servants have it all their own way,

do what they please,

and have what they please,

except so far as I,

with my feeble health,

have kept up government.

I keep my cowhide about,

and sometimes I do lay it on;

but the exertion is always too much for me.

If St. Clare would only have this thing done as others do --"

"And how's that?"


send them to the calaboose,

or some of the other places to be flogged.

That's the only way.

If I wasn't such a poor,

feeble piece,

I believe I should manage with twice the energy that St. Clare does."

"And how does St. Clare contrive to manage?"

said Miss Ophelia.

"You say he never strikes a blow."


men have a more commanding way,

you know;

it is easier for them;


if you ever looked full in his eye,

it's peculiar,

--that eye,

--and if he speaks decidedly,

there's a kind of flash.

I'm afraid of it,


and the servants know they must mind.

I couldn't do as much by a regular storm and scolding as St. Clare can by one turn of his eye,

if once he is in earnest.


there's no trouble about St. Clare;

that's the reason he's no more feeling for me.

But you'll find,

when you come to manage,

that there's no getting along without severity,

--they are so bad,

so deceitful,

so lazy."

"The old tune,"

said St. Clare,

sauntering in.

"What an awful account these wicked creatures will have to settle,

at last,

especially for being lazy!

You see,


said he,

as he stretched himself at full length on a lounge opposite to Marie,

"it's wholly inexcusable in them,

in the light of the example that Marie and I set them,

--this laziness."



St. Clare,

you are too bad!"

said Marie.

"Am I,



I thought I was talking good,

quite remarkably for me.

I try to enforce your remarks,



"You know you meant no such thing,

St. Clare,"

said Marie.


I must have been mistaken,


Thank you,

my dear,

for setting me right."

"You do really try to be provoking,"

said Marie.




the day is growing warm,

and I have just had a long quarrel with Dolph,

which has fatigued me excessively;


pray be agreeable,


and let a fellow repose in the light of your smile."

"What's the matter about Dolph?"

said Marie.

"That fellow's impudence has been growing to a point that is perfectly intolerable to me.

I only wish I had the undisputed management of him a while.

I'd bring him down!"

"What you say,

my dear,

is marked with your usual acuteness and good sense,"

said St. Clare.

"As to Dolph,

the case is this: that he has so long been engaged in imitating my graces and perfections,

that he has,

at last,

really mistaken himself for his master;

and I have been obliged to give him a little insight into his mistake."


said Marie.


I was obliged to let him understand explicitly that I preferred to keep -some- of my clothes for my own personal wearing;


I put his magnificence upon an allowance of cologne-water,

and actually was so cruel as to restrict him to one dozen of my cambric handkerchiefs.

Dolph was particularly huffy about it,

and I had to talk to him like a father,

to bring him round."


St. Clare,

when will you learn how to treat your servants?

It's abominable,

the way you indulge them!"

said Marie.


after all,

what's the harm of the poor dog's wanting to be like his master;

and if I haven't brought him up any better than to find his chief good in cologne and cambric handkerchiefs,

why shouldn't I give them to him?"

"And why haven't you brought him up better?"

said Miss Ophelia,

with blunt determination.

"Too much trouble,




--which ruins more souls than you can shake a stick at.

If it weren't for laziness,

I should have been a perfect angel,


I'm inclined to think that laziness is what your old Dr. Botherem,

up in Vermont,

used to call the

'essence of moral evil.'

It's an awful consideration,


"I think you slaveholders have an awful responsibility upon you,"

said Miss Ophelia.

"I wouldn't have it,

for a thousand worlds.

You ought to educate your slaves,

and treat them like reasonable creatures,

--like immortal creatures,

that you've got to stand before the bar of God with.

That's my mind,"

said the good lady,

breaking suddenly out with a tide of zeal that had been gaining strength in her mind all the morning.




said St. Clare,

getting up quickly;

"what do you know about us?"

And he sat down to the piano,

and rattled a lively piece of music.

St. Clare had a decided genius for music.

His touch was brilliant and firm,

and his fingers flew over the keys with a rapid and bird-like motion,


and yet decided.

He played piece after piece,

like a man who is trying to play himself into a good humor.

After pushing the music aside,

he rose up,

and said,





you've given us a good talk and done your duty;

on the whole,

I think the better of you for it.

I make no manner of doubt that you threw a very diamond of truth at me,

though you see it hit me so directly in the face that it wasn't exactly appreciated,

at first."

"For my part,

I don't see any use in such sort of talk,"

said Marie.

"I'm sure,

if anybody does more for servants than we do,

I'd like to know who;

and it don't do

'em a bit good,

--not a particle,

--they get worse and worse.

As to talking to them,

or anything like that,

I'm sure I have talked till I was tired and hoarse,

telling them their duty,

and all that;

and I'm sure they can go to church when they like,

though they don't understand a word of the sermon,

more than so many pigs,

--so it isn't of any great use for them to go,

as I see;

but they do go,

and so they have every chance;


as I said before,

they are a degraded race,

and always will be,

and there isn't any help for them;

you can't make anything of them,

if you try.

You see,

Cousin Ophelia,

I've tried,

and you haven't;

I was born and bred among them,

and I know."

Miss Ophelia thought she had said enough,

and therefore sat silent.

St. Clare whistled a tune.

"St. Clare,

I wish you wouldn't whistle,"

said Marie;

"it makes my head worse."

"I won't,"

said St. Clare.

"Is there anything else you wouldn't wish me to do?"

"I wish you -would- have some kind of sympathy for my trials;

you never have any feeling for me."

"My dear accusing angel!"

said St. Clare.

"It's provoking to be talked to in that way."


how will you be talked to?

I'll talk to order,

--any way you'll mention,

--only to give satisfaction."

A gay laugh from the court rang through the silken curtains of the verandah.

St. Clare stepped out,

and lifting up the curtain,

laughed too.

"What is it?"

said Miss Ophelia,

coming to the railing.

There sat Tom,

on a little mossy seat in the court,

every one of his button-holes stuck full of cape jessamines,

and Eva,

gayly laughing,

was hanging a wreath of roses round his neck;

and then she sat down on his knee,

like a chip-sparrow,

still laughing.



you look so funny!"

Tom had a sober,

benevolent smile,

and seemed,

in his quiet way,

to be enjoying the fun quite as much as his little mistress.

He lifted his eyes,

when he saw his master,

with a half-deprecating,

apologetic air.

"How can you let her?"

said Miss Ophelia.

"Why not?"

said St. Clare.


I don't know,

it seems so dreadful!"

"You would think no harm in a child's caressing a large dog,

even if he was black;

but a creature that can think,

and reason,

and feel,

and is immortal,

you shudder at;

confess it,


I know the feeling among some of you northerners well enough.

Not that there is a particle of virtue in our not having it;

but custom with us does what Christianity ought to do,

--obliterates the feeling of personal prejudice.

I have often noticed,

in my travels north,

how much stronger this was with you than with us.

You loathe them as you would a snake or a toad,

yet you are indignant at their wrongs.

You would not have them abused;

but you don't want to have anything to do with them yourselves.

You would send them to Africa,

out of your sight and smell,

and then send a missionary or two to do up all the self-denial of elevating them compendiously.

Isn't that it?"



said Miss Ophelia,


"there may be some truth in this."

"What would the poor and lowly do,

without children?"

said St. Clare,

leaning on the railing,

and watching Eva,

as she tripped off,

leading Tom with her.

"Your little child is your only true democrat.


now is a hero to Eva;

his stories are wonders in her eyes,

his songs and Methodist hymns are better than an opera,

and the traps and little bits of trash in his pocket a mine of jewels,

and he the most wonderful Tom that ever wore a black skin.

This is one of the roses of Eden that the Lord has dropped down expressly for the poor and lowly,

who get few enough of any other kind."

"It's strange,


said Miss Ophelia,

"one might almost think you were a -professor-,

to hear you talk."

"A professor?"

said St. Clare.


a professor of religion."

"Not at all;

not a professor,

as your town-folks have it;


what is worse,

I'm afraid,

not a -practiser-,


"What makes you talk so,


"Nothing is easier than talking,"

said St. Clare.

"I believe Shakespeare makes somebody say,

'I could sooner show twenty what were good to be done,

than be one of the twenty to follow my own showing.'* Nothing like division of labor.

My forte lies in talking,

and yours,


lies in doing."

* -The Merchant of Venice-,

Act 1,

scene 2,

lines 17-18.

In Tom's external situation,

at this time,

there was,

as the world says,

nothing to complain of Little Eva's fancy for him --the instinctive gratitude and loveliness of a noble nature --had led her to petition her father that he might be her especial attendant,

whenever she needed the escort of a servant,

in her walks or rides;

and Tom had general orders to let everything else go,

and attend to Miss Eva whenever she wanted him,

--orders which our readers may fancy were far from disagreeable to him.

He was kept well dressed,

for St. Clare was fastidiously particular on this point.

His stable services were merely a sinecure,

and consisted simply in a daily care and inspection,

and directing an under-servant in his duties;

for Marie St. Clare declared that she could not have any smell of the horses about him when he came near her,

and that he must positively not be put to any service that would make him unpleasant to her,

as her nervous system was entirely inadequate to any trial of that nature;

one snuff of anything disagreeable being,

according to her account,

quite sufficient to close the scene,

and put an end to all her earthly trials at once.



in his well-brushed broadcloth suit,

smooth beaver,

glossy boots,

faultless wristbands and collar,

with his grave,

good-natured black face,

looked respectable enough to be a Bishop of Carthage,

as men of his color were,

in other ages.



he was in a beautiful place,

a consideration to which his sensitive race was never indifferent;

and he did enjoy with a quiet joy the birds,

the flowers,

the fountains,

the perfume,

and light and beauty of the court,

the silken hangings,

and pictures,

and lustres,

and statuettes,

and gilding,

that made the parlors within a kind of Aladdin's palace to him.

If ever Africa shall show an elevated and cultivated race,

--and come it must,

some time,

her turn to figure in the great drama of human improvement.

--life will awake there with a gorgeousness and splendor of which our cold western tribes faintly have conceived.

In that far-off mystic land of gold,

and gems,

and spices,

and waving palms,

and wondrous flowers,

and miraculous fertility,

will awake new forms of art,

new styles of splendor;

and the negro race,

no longer despised and trodden down,



show forth some of the latest and most magnificent revelations of human life.

Certainly they will,

in their gentleness,

their lowly docility of heart,

their aptitude to repose on a superior mind and rest on a higher power,

their childlike simplicity of affection,

and facility of forgiveness.

In all these they will exhibit the highest form of the peculiarly -Christian life-,



as God chasteneth whom he loveth,

he hath chosen poor Africa in the furnace of affliction,

to make her the highest and noblest in that kingdom which he will set up,

when every other kingdom has been tried,

and failed;

for the first shall be last,

and the last first.

Was this what Marie St. Clare was thinking of,

as she stood,

gorgeously dressed,

on the verandah,

on Sunday morning,

clasping a diamond bracelet on her slender wrist?

Most likely it was.


if it wasn't that,

it was something else;

for Marie patronized good things,

and she was going now,

in full force,



and lace,

and jewels,

and all,

--to a fashionable church,

to be very religious.

Marie always made a point to be very pious on Sundays.

There she stood,

so slender,

so elegant,

so airy and undulating in all her motions,

her lace scarf enveloping her like a mist.

She looked a graceful creature,

and she felt very good and very elegant indeed.

Miss Ophelia stood at her side,

a perfect contrast.

It was not that she had not as handsome a silk dress and shawl,

and as fine a pocket-handkerchief;

but stiffness and squareness,

and bolt-uprightness,

enveloped her with as indefinite yet appreciable a presence as did grace her elegant neighbor;

not the grace of God,


--that is quite another thing!

"Where's Eva?"

said Marie.

"The child stopped on the stairs,

to say something to Mammy."

And what was Eva saying to Mammy on the stairs?



and you will hear,

though Marie does not.

"Dear Mammy,

I know your head is aching dreadfully."

"Lord bless you,

Miss Eva!

my head allers aches lately.

You don't need to worry."


I'm glad you're going out;

and here,"

--and the little girl threw her arms around her,


you shall take my vinaigrette."


your beautiful gold thing,


with them diamonds!



't wouldn't be proper,

no ways."

"Why not?

You need it,

and I don't.

Mamma always uses it for headache,

and it'll make you feel better.


you shall take it,

to please me,


"Do hear the darlin talk!"

said Mammy,

as Eva thrust it into her bosom,

and kissing her,

ran down stairs to her mother.

"What were you stopping for?"

"I was just stopping to give Mammy my vinaigrette,

to take to church with her."

"Eva" said Marie,

stamping impatiently,

--"your gold vinaigrette to -Mammy!- When will you learn what's -proper-?

Go right and take it back this moment!"

Eva looked downcast and aggrieved,

and turned slowly.

"I say,


let the child alone;

she shall do as she pleases,"

said St. Clare.

"St. Clare,

how will she ever get along in the world?"

said Marie.

"The Lord knows,"

said St. Clare,

"but she'll get along in heaven better than you or I."




said Eva,

softly touching his elbow;

"it troubles mother."



are you ready to go to meeting?"

said Miss Ophelia,

turning square about on St. Clare.

"I'm not going,

thank you."

"I do wish St. Clare ever would go to church,"

said Marie;

"but he hasn't a particle of religion about him.

It really isn't respectable."

"I know it,"

said St. Clare.

"You ladies go to church to learn how to get along in the world,

I suppose,

and your piety sheds respectability on us.

If I did go at all,

I would go where Mammy goes;

there's something to keep a fellow awake there,

at least."


those shouting Methodists?


said Marie.

"Anything but the dead sea of your respectable churches,



it's too much to ask of a man.


do you like to go?


stay at home and play with me."

"Thank you,


but I'd rather go to church."

"Isn't it dreadful tiresome?"

said St. Clare.

"I think it is tiresome,


said Eva,

"and I am sleepy,


but I try to keep awake."

"What do you go for,



you know,


she said,

in a whisper,

"cousin told me that God wants to have us;

and he gives us everything,

you know;

and it isn't much to do it,

if he wants us to.

It isn't so very tiresome after all."

"You sweet,

little obliging soul!"

said St. Clare,

kissing her;

"go along,

that's a good girl,

and pray for me."


I always do,"

said the child,

as she sprang after her mother into the carriage.

St. Clare stood on the steps and kissed his hand to her,

as the carriage drove away;

large tears were in his eyes.



rightly named,"

he said;

"hath not God made thee an evangel to me?"

So he felt a moment;

and then he smoked a cigar,

and read the Picayune,

and forgot his little gospel.

Was he much unlike other folks?

"You see,


said her mother,

"it's always right and proper to be kind to servants,

but it isn't proper to treat them -just- as we would our relations,

or people in our own class of life.


if Mammy was sick,

you wouldn't want to put her in your own bed."

"I should feel just like it,


said Eva,

"because then it would be handier to take care of her,

and because,

you know,

my bed is better than hers."

Marie was in utter despair at the entire want of moral perception evinced in this reply.

"What can I do to make this child understand me?"

she said.


said Miss Ophelia,


Eva looked sorry and disconcerted for a moment;

but children,


do not keep to one impression long,

and in a few moments she was merrily laughing at various things which she saw from the coach-windows,

as it rattled along.




said St. Clare,

as they were comfortably seated at the dinner-table,

"and what was the bill of fare at church today?"


Dr. G -- -- preached a splendid sermon,"

said Marie.

"It was just such a sermon as you ought to hear;

it expressed all my views exactly."

"It must have been very improving,"

said St. Clare.

"The subject must have been an extensive one."


I mean all my views about society,

and such things,"

said Marie.

"The text was,

'He hath made everything beautiful in its season;'

and he showed how all the orders and distinctions in society came from God;

and that it was so appropriate,

you know,

and beautiful,

that some should be high and some low,

and that some were born to rule and some to serve,

and all that,

you know;

and he applied it so well to all this ridiculous fuss that is made about slavery,

and he proved distinctly that the Bible was on our side,

and supported all our institutions so convincingly.

I only wish you'd heard him."


I didn't need it,"

said St. Clare.

"I can learn what does me as much good as that from the Picayune,

any time,

and smoke a cigar besides;

which I can't do,

you know,

in a church."


said Miss Ophelia,

"don't you believe in these views?"



You know I'm such a graceless dog that these religious aspects of such subjects don't edify me much.

If I was to say anything on this slavery matter,

I would say out,

fair and square,

'We're in for it;

we've got


and mean to keep


--it's for our convenience and our interest;'

for that's the long and short of it,

--that's just the whole of what all this sanctified stuff amounts to,

after all;

and I think that it will be intelligible to everybody,


"I do think,


you are so irreverent!"

said Marie.

"I think it's shocking to hear you talk."


it's the truth.

This religious talk on such matters,

--why don't they carry it a little further,

and show the beauty,

in its season,

of a fellow's taking a glass too much,

and sitting a little too late over his cards,

and various providential arrangements of that sort,

which are pretty frequent among us young men;

--we'd like to hear that those are right and godly,



said Miss Ophelia,

"do you think slavery right or wrong?"

"I'm not going to have any of your horrid New England directness,


said St. Clare,


"If I answer that question,

I know you'll be at me with half a dozen others,

each one harder than the last;

and I'm not a going to define my position.

I am one of the sort that lives by throwing stones at other people's glass houses,

but I never mean to put up one for them to stone."

"That's just the way he's always talking,"

said Marie;

"you can't get any satisfaction out of him.

I believe it's just because he don't like religion,

that he's always running out in this way he's been doing."


said St. Clare,

in a tone that made both ladies look at him.


Is what you hear at church,


Is that which can bend and turn,

and descend and ascend,

to fit every crooked phase of selfish,

worldly society,


Is that religion which is less scrupulous,

less generous,

less just,

less considerate for man,

than even my own ungodly,


blinded nature?


When I look for a religion,

I must look for something above me,

and not something beneath."

"Then you don't believe that the Bible justifies slavery,"

said Miss Ophelia.

"The Bible was my -mother's- book,"

said St. Clare.

"By it she lived and died,

and I would be very sorry to think it did.

I'd as soon desire to have it proved that my mother could drink brandy,

chew tobacco,

and swear,

by way of satisfying me that I did right in doing the same.

It wouldn't make me at all more satisfied with these things in myself,

and it would take from me the comfort of respecting her;

and it really is a comfort,

in this world,

to have anything one can respect.

In short,

you see,"

said he,

suddenly resuming his gay tone,

"all I want is that different things be kept in different boxes.

The whole frame-work of society,

both in Europe and America,

is made up of various things which will not stand the scrutiny of any very ideal standard of morality.

It's pretty generally understood that men don't aspire after the absolute right,

but only to do about as well as the rest of the world.


when any one speaks up,

like a man,

and says slavery is necessary to us,

we can't get along without it,

we should be beggared if we give it up,


of course,

we mean to hold on to it,

--this is strong,


well-defined language;

it has the respectability of truth to it;


if we may judge by their practice,

the majority of the world will bear us out in it.

But when he begins to put on a long face,

and snuffle,

and quote Scripture,

I incline to think he isn't much better than he should be."

"You are very uncharitable,"

said Marie.


said St. Clare,

"suppose that something should bring down the price of cotton once and forever,

and make the whole slave property a drug in the market,

don't you think we should soon have another version of the Scripture doctrine?

What a flood of light would pour into the church,

all at once,

and how immediately it would be discovered that everything in the Bible and reason went the other way!"


at any rate,"

said Marie,

as she reclined herself on a lounge,

"I'm thankful I'm born where slavery exists;

and I believe it's right,


I feel it must be;


at any rate,

I'm sure I couldn't get along without it."

"I say,

what do you think,


said her father to Eva,

who came in at this moment,

with a flower in her hand.

"What about,



which do you like the best,

--to live as they do at your uncle's,

up in Vermont,

or to have a house-full of servants,

as we do?"


of course,

our way is the pleasantest,"

said Eva.

"Why so?"

said St. Clare,

stroking her head.


it makes so many more round you to love,

you know,"

said Eva,

looking up earnestly.


that's just like Eva,"

said Marie;

"just one of her odd speeches."

"Is it an odd speech,


said Eva,


as she got upon his knee.


as this world goes,


said St. Clare.

"But where has my little Eva been,

all dinner-time?"


I've been up in Tom's room,

hearing him sing,

and Aunt Dinah gave me my dinner."

"Hearing Tom sing,




he sings such beautiful things about the New Jerusalem,

and bright angels,

and the land of Canaan."

"I dare say;

it's better than the opera,

isn't it?"


and he's going to teach them to me."

"Singing lessons,


--you -are- coming on."


he sings for me,

and I read to him in my Bible;

and he explains what it means,

you know."

"On my word,"

said Marie,


"that is the latest joke of the season."

"Tom isn't a bad hand,


at explaining Scripture,

I'll dare swear,"

said St. Clare.

"Tom has a natural genius for religion.

I wanted the horses out early,

this morning,

and I stole up to Tom's cubiculum there,

over the stables,

and there I heard him holding a meeting by himself;


in fact,

I haven't heard anything quite so savory as Tom's prayer,

this some time.

He put in for me,

with a zeal that was quite apostolic."

"Perhaps he guessed you were listening.

I've heard of that trick before."

"If he did,

he wasn't very polite;

for he gave the Lord his opinion of me,

pretty freely.

Tom seemed to think there was decidedly room for improvement in me,

and seemed very earnest that I should be converted."

"I hope you'll lay it to heart,"

said Miss Ophelia.

"I suppose you are much of the same opinion,"

said St. Clare.


we shall see,

--shan't we,



The Freeman's Defence

There was a gentle bustle at the Quaker house,

as the afternoon drew to a close.

Rachel Halliday moved quietly to and fro,

collecting from her household stores such needments as could be arranged in the smallest compass,

for the wanderers who were to go forth that night.

The afternoon shadows stretched eastward,

and the round red sun stood thoughtfully on the horizon,

and his beams shone yellow and calm into the little bed-room where George and his wife were sitting.

He was sitting with his child on his knee,

and his wife's hand in his.

Both looked thoughtful and serious and traces of tears were on their cheeks.



said George,

"I know all you say is true.

You are a good child,

--a great deal better than I am;

and I will try to do as you say.

I'll try to act worthy of a free man.

I'll try to feel like a Christian.

God Almighty knows that I've meant to do well,

--tried hard to do well,

--when everything has been against me;

and now I'll forget all the past,

and put away every hard and bitter feeling,

and read my Bible,

and learn to be a good man."

"And when we get to Canada,"

said Eliza,

"I can help you.

I can do dress-making very well;

and I understand fine washing and ironing;

and between us we can find something to live on."



so long as we have each other and our boy.



if these people only knew what a blessing it is for a man to feel that his wife and child belong to -him-!

I've often wondered to see men that could call their wives and children -their own- fretting and worrying about anything else.


I feel rich and strong,

though we have nothing but our bare hands.

I feel as if I could scarcely ask God for any more.


though I've worked hard every day,

till I am twenty-five years old,

and have not a cent of money,

nor a roof to cover me,

nor a spot of land to call my own,


if they will only let me alone now,

I will be satisfied,


I will work,

and send back the money for you and my boy.

As to my old master,

he has been paid five times over for all he ever spent for me.

I don't owe him anything."

"But yet we are not quite out of danger,"

said Eliza;

"we are not yet in Canada."


said George,

"but it seems as if I smelt the free air,

and it makes me strong."

At this moment,

voices were heard in the outer apartment,

in earnest conversation,

and very soon a rap was heard on the door.

Eliza started and opened it.

Simeon Halliday was there,

and with him a Quaker brother,

whom he introduced as Phineas Fletcher.

Phineas was tall and lathy,


with an expression of great acuteness and shrewdness in his face.

He had not the placid,


unworldly air of Simeon Halliday;

on the contrary,

a particularly wide-awake and -au fait- appearance,

like a man who rather prides himself on knowing what he is about,

and keeping a bright lookout ahead;

peculiarities which sorted rather oddly with his broad brim and formal phraseology.

"Our friend Phineas hath discovered something of importance to the interests of thee and thy party,


said Simeon;

"it were well for thee to hear it."

"That I have,"

said Phineas,

"and it shows the use of a man's always sleeping with one ear open,

in certain places,

as I've always said.

Last night I stopped at a little lone tavern,

back on the road.

Thee remembers the place,


where we sold some apples,

last year,

to that fat woman,

with the great ear-rings.


I was tired with hard driving;


after my supper I stretched myself down on a pile of bags in the corner,

and pulled a buffalo over me,

to wait till my bed was ready;

and what does I do,

but get fast asleep."

"With one ear open,


said Simeon,



I slept,

ears and all,

for an hour or two,

for I was pretty well tired;

but when I came to myself a little,

I found that there were some men in the room,

sitting round a table,

drinking and talking;

and I thought,

before I made much muster,

I'd just see what they were up to,

especially as I heard them say something about the Quakers.


says one,

'they are up in the Quaker settlement,

no doubt,'

says he.

Then I listened with both ears,

and I found that they were talking about this very party.

So I lay and heard them lay off all their plans.

This young man,

they said,

was to be sent back to Kentucky,

to his master,

who was going to make an example of him,

to keep all niggers from running away;

and his wife two of them were going to run down to New Orleans to sell,

on their own account,

and they calculated to get sixteen or eighteen hundred dollars for her;

and the child,

they said,

was going to a trader,

who had bought him;

and then there was the boy,


and his mother,

they were to go back to their masters in Kentucky.

They said that there were two constables,

in a town a little piece ahead,

who would go in with

'em to get

'em taken up,

and the young woman was to be taken before a judge;

and one of the fellows,

who is small and smooth-spoken,

was to swear to her for his property,

and get her delivered over to him to take south.

They've got a right notion of the track we are going tonight;

and they'll be down after us,

six or eight strong.

So now,

what's to be done?"

The group that stood in various attitudes,

after this communication,

were worthy of a painter.

Rachel Halliday,

who had taken her hands out of a batch of biscuit,

to hear the news,

stood with them upraised and floury,

and with a face of the deepest concern.

Simeon looked profoundly thoughtful;

Eliza had thrown her arms around her husband,

and was looking up to him.

George stood with clenched hands and glowing eyes,

and looking as any other man might look,

whose wife was to be sold at auction,

and son sent to a trader,

all under the shelter of a Christian nation's laws.

"What -shall- we do,


said Eliza faintly.

"I know what -I- shall do,"

said George,

as he stepped into the little room,

and began examining pistols.



said Phineas,

nodding his head to Simeon;

"thou seest,


how it will work."

"I see,"

said Simeon,


"I pray it come not to that."

"I don't want to involve any one with or for me,"

said George.

"If you will lend me your vehicle and direct me,

I will drive alone to the next stand.

Jim is a giant in strength,

and brave as death and despair,

and so am I."




said Phineas,

"but thee'll need a driver,

for all that.

Thee's quite welcome to do all the fighting,

thee knows;

but I know a thing or two about the road,

that thee doesn't."

"But I don't want to involve you,"

said George.


said Phineas,

with a curious and keen expression of face,

"When thee does involve me,

please to let me know."

"Phineas is a wise and skilful man,"

said Simeon.

"Thee does well,


to abide by his judgment;


he added,

laying his hand kindly on George's shoulder,

and pointing to the pistols,

"be not over hasty with these,

--young blood is hot."

"I will attack no man,"

said George.

"All I ask of this country is to be let alone,

and I will go out peaceably;


--he paused,

and his brow darkened and his face worked,

--"I've had a sister sold in that New Orleans market.

I know what they are sold for;

and am I going to stand by and see them take my wife and sell her,

when God has given me a pair of strong arms to defend her?


God help me!

I'll fight to the last breath,

before they shall take my wife and son.

Can you blame me?"

"Mortal man cannot blame thee,


Flesh and blood could not do otherwise,"

said Simeon.

"Woe unto the world because of offences,

but woe unto them through whom the offence cometh."

"Would not even you,


do the same,

in my place?"

"I pray that I be not tried,"

said Simeon;

"the flesh is weak."

"I think my flesh would be pretty tolerable strong,

in such a case,"

said Phineas,

stretching out a pair of arms like the sails of a windmill.

"I an't sure,

friend George,

that I shouldn't hold a fellow for thee,

if thee had any accounts to settle with him."

"If man should -ever- resist evil,"

said Simeon,

"then George should feel free to do it now: but the leaders of our people taught a more excellent way;

for the wrath of man worketh not the righteousness of God;

but it goes sorely against the corrupt will of man,

and none can receive it save they to whom it is given.

Let us pray the Lord that we be not tempted."

"And so -I- do,"

said Phineas;

"but if we are tempted too much --why,

let them look out,

that's all."

"It's quite plain thee wasn't born a Friend,"

said Simeon,


"The old nature hath its way in thee pretty strong as yet."

To tell the truth,

Phineas had been a hearty,

two-fisted backwoodsman,

a vigorous hunter,

and a dead shot at a buck;


having wooed a pretty Quakeress,

had been moved by the power of her charms to join the society in his neighborhood;

and though he was an honest,


and efficient member,

and nothing particular could be alleged against him,

yet the more spiritual among them could not but discern an exceeding lack of savor in his developments.

"Friend Phineas will ever have ways of his own,"

said Rachel Halliday,


"but we all think that his heart is in the right place,

after all."


said George,

"isn't it best that we hasten our flight?"

"I got up at four o'clock,

and came on with all speed,

full two or three hours ahead of them,

if they start at the time they planned.

It isn't safe to start till dark,

at any rate;

for there are some evil persons in the villages ahead,

that might be disposed to meddle with us,

if they saw our wagon,

and that would delay us more than the waiting;

but in two hours I think we may venture.

I will go over to Michael Cross,

and engage him to come behind on his swift nag,

and keep a bright lookout on the road,

and warn us if any company of men come on.

Michael keeps a horse that can soon get ahead of most other horses;

and he could shoot ahead and let us know,

if there were any danger.

I am going out now to warn Jim and the old woman to be in readiness,

and to see about the horse.

We have a pretty fair start,

and stand a good chance to get to the stand before they can come up with us.


have good courage,

friend George;

this isn't the first ugly scrape that I've been in with thy people,"

said Phineas,

as he closed the door.

"Phineas is pretty shrewd,"

said Simeon.

"He will do the best that can be done for thee,


"All I am sorry for,"

said George,

"is the risk to you."

"Thee'll much oblige us,

friend George,

to say no more about that.

What we do we are conscience bound to do;

we can do no other way.

And now,


said he,

turning to Rachel,

"hurry thy preparations for these friends,

for we must not send them away fasting."

And while Rachel and her children were busy making corn-cake,

and cooking ham and chicken,

and hurrying on the -et ceteras- of the evening meal,

George and his wife sat in their little room,

with their arms folded about each other,

in such talk as husband and wife have when they know that a few hours may part them forever.


said George,

"people that have friends,

and houses,

and lands,

and money,

and all those things -can't- love as we do,

who have nothing but each other.

Till I knew you,


no creature had loved me,

but my poor,

heart-broken mother and sister.

I saw poor Emily that morning the trader carried her off.

She came to the corner where I was lying asleep,

and said,

'Poor George,

your last friend is going.

What will become of you,

poor boy?'

And I got up and threw my arms round her,

and cried and sobbed,

and she cried too;

and those were the last kind words I got for ten long years;

and my heart all withered up,

and felt as dry as ashes,

till I met you.

And your loving me,


it was almost like raising one from the dead!

I've been a new man ever since!

And now,


I'll give my last drop of blood,

but they -shall not- take you from me.

Whoever gets you must walk over my dead body."



have mercy!"

said Eliza,


"If he will only let us get out of this country together,

that is all we ask."

"Is God on their side?"

said George,

speaking less to his wife than pouring out his own bitter thoughts.

"Does he see all they do?

Why does he let such things happen?

And they tell us that the Bible is on their side;

certainly all the power is.

They are rich,

and healthy,

and happy;

they are members of churches,

expecting to go to heaven;

and they get along so easy in the world,

and have it all their own way;

and poor,


faithful Christians,

--Christians as good or better than they,

--are lying in the very dust under their feet.

They buy

'em and sell


and make trade of their heart's blood,

and groans and tears,

--and God -lets- them."

"Friend George,"

said Simeon,

from the kitchen,

"listen to this Psalm;

it may do thee good."

George drew his seat near the door,

and Eliza,

wiping her tears,

came forward also to listen,

while Simeon read as follows:

"But as for me,

my feet were almost gone;

my steps had well-nigh slipped.

For I was envious of the foolish,

when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.

They are not in trouble like other men,

neither are they plagued like other men.


pride compasseth them as a chain;

violence covereth them as a garment.

Their eyes stand out with fatness;

they have more than heart could wish.

They are corrupt,

and speak wickedly concerning oppression;

they speak loftily.

Therefore his people return,

and the waters of a full cup are wrung out to them,

and they say,

How doth God know?

and is there knowledge in the Most High?"

"Is not that the way thee feels,


"It is so indeed,"

said George,

--"as well as I could have written it myself."



said Simeon:

"When I thought to know this,

it was too painful for me until I went unto the sanctuary of God.

Then understood I their end.

Surely thou didst set them in slippery places,

thou castedst them down to destruction.

As a dream when one awaketh,


oh Lord,

when thou awakest,

thou shalt despise their image.

Nevertheless I am continually with thee;

thou hast holden me by my right hand.

Thou shalt guide me by thy counsel,

and afterwards receive me to glory.

It is good for me to draw near unto God.

I have put my trust in the Lord God."*

* Ps.


"The End of the Wicked contrasted with that of the Righteous."

The words of holy trust,

breathed by the friendly old man,

stole like sacred music over the harassed and chafed spirit of George;

and after he ceased,

he sat with a gentle and subdued expression on his fine features.

"If this world were all,


said Simeon,

"thee might,


ask where is the Lord?

But it is often those who have least of all in this life whom he chooseth for the kingdom.

Put thy trust in him and,

no matter what befalls thee here,

he will make all right hereafter."

If these words had been spoken by some easy,

self-indulgent exhorter,

from whose mouth they might have come merely as pious and rhetorical flourish,

proper to be used to people in distress,

perhaps they might not have had much effect;

but coming from one who daily and calmly risked fine and imprisonment for the cause of God and man,

they had a weight that could not but be felt,

and both the poor,

desolate fugitives found calmness and strength breathing into them from it.

And now Rachel took Eliza's hand kindly,

and led the way to the supper-table.

As they were sitting down,

a light tap sounded at the door,

and Ruth entered.

"I just ran in,"

she said,

"with these little stockings for the boy,

--three pair,


warm woollen ones.

It will be so cold,

thee knows,

in Canada.

Does thee keep up good courage,


she added,

tripping round to Eliza's side of the table,

and shaking her warmly by the hand,

and slipping a seed-cake into Harry's hand.

"I brought a little parcel of these for him,"

she said,

tugging at her pocket to get out the package.


thee knows,

will always be eating."


thank you;

you are too kind,"

said Eliza.



sit down to supper,"

said Rachel.

"I couldn't,

any way.

I left John with the baby,

and some biscuits in the oven;

and I can't stay a moment,

else John will burn up all the biscuits,

and give the baby all the sugar in the bowl.

That's the way he does,"

said the little Quakeress,







the Lord grant thee a safe journey;"


with a few tripping steps,

Ruth was out of the apartment.

A little while after supper,

a large covered-wagon drew up before the door;

the night was clear starlight;

and Phineas jumped briskly down from his seat to arrange his passengers.

George walked out of the door,

with his child on one arm and his wife on the other.

His step was firm,

his face settled and resolute.

Rachel and Simeon came out after them.

"You get out,

a moment,"

said Phineas to those inside,

"and let me fix the back of the wagon,


for the women-folks and the boy."

"Here are the two buffaloes,"

said Rachel.

"Make the seats as comfortable as may be;

it's hard riding all night."

Jim came out first,

and carefully assisted out his old mother,

who clung to his arm,

and looked anxiously about,

as if she expected the pursuer every moment.


are your pistols all in order?"

said George,

in a low,

firm voice.



said Jim.

"And you've no doubt what you shall do,

if they come?"

"I rather think I haven't,"

said Jim,

throwing open his broad chest,

and taking a deep breath.

"Do you think I'll let them get mother again?"

During this brief colloquy,

Eliza had been taking her leave of her kind friend,


and was handed into the carriage by Simeon,


creeping into the back part with her boy,

sat down among the buffalo-skins.

The old woman was next handed in and seated and George and Jim placed on a rough board seat front of them,

and Phineas mounted in front.


my friends,"

said Simeon,

from without.

"God bless you!"

answered all from within.

And the wagon drove off,

rattling and jolting over the frozen road.

There was no opportunity for conversation,

on account of the roughness of the way and the noise of the wheels.

The vehicle,


rumbled on,

through long,

dark stretches of woodland,

--over wide dreary plains,

--up hills,

and down valleys,

--and on,


on they jogged,

hour after hour.

The child soon fell asleep,

and lay heavily in his mother's lap.

The poor,

frightened old woman at last forgot her fears;


even Eliza,

as the night waned,

found all her anxieties insufficient to keep her eyes from closing.

Phineas seemed,

on the whole,

the briskest of the company,

and beguiled his long drive with whistling certain very unquaker-like songs,

as he went on.

But about three o'clock George's ear caught the hasty and decided click of a horse's hoof coming behind them at some distance and jogged Phineas by the elbow.

Phineas pulled up his horses,

and listened.

"That must be Michael,"

he said;

"I think I know the sound of his gallop;"

and he rose up and stretched his head anxiously back over the road.

A man riding in hot haste was now dimly descried at the top of a distant hill.

"There he is,

I do believe!"

said Phineas.

George and Jim both sprang out of the wagon before they knew what they were doing.

All stood intensely silent,

with their faces turned towards the expected messenger.

On he came.

Now he went down into a valley,

where they could not see him;

but they heard the sharp,

hasty tramp,

rising nearer and nearer;

at last they saw him emerge on the top of an eminence,

within hail.


that's Michael!"

said Phineas;


raising his voice,





is that thee?"


what news --they coming?"

"Right on behind,

eight or ten of them,

hot with brandy,

swearing and foaming like so many wolves."


just as he spoke,

a breeze brought the faint sound of galloping horsemen towards them.

"In with you,



-in!-" said Phineas.

"If you must fight,

wait till I get you a piece ahead."


with the word,

both jumped in,

and Phineas lashed the horses to a run,

the horseman keeping close beside them.

The wagon rattled,


almost flew,

over the frozen ground;

but plainer,

and still plainer,

came the noise of pursuing horsemen behind.

The women heard it,


looking anxiously out,


far in the rear,

on the brow of a distant hill,

a party of men looming up against the red-streaked sky of early dawn.

Another hill,

and their pursuers had evidently caught sight of their wagon,

whose white cloth-covered top made it conspicuous at some distance,

and a loud yell of brutal triumph came forward on the wind.

Eliza sickened,

and strained her child closer to her bosom;

the old woman prayed and groaned,

and George and Jim clenched their pistols with the grasp of despair.

The pursuers gained on them fast;

the carriage made a sudden turn,

and brought them near a ledge of a steep overhanging rock,

that rose in an isolated ridge or clump in a large lot,

which was,

all around it,

quite clear and smooth.

This isolated pile,

or range of rocks,

rose up black and heavy against the brightening sky,

and seemed to promise shelter and concealment.

It was a place well known to Phineas,

who had been familiar with the spot in his hunting days;

and it was to gain this point he had been racing his horses.

"Now for it!"

said he,

suddenly checking his horses,

and springing from his seat to the ground.

"Out with you,

in a twinkling,

every one,

and up into these rocks with me.


thee tie thy horse to the wagon,

and drive ahead to Amariah's and get him and his boys to come back and talk to these fellows."

In a twinkling they were all out of the carriage.


said Phineas,

catching up Harry,


each of you,

see to the women;

and run,

-now- if you ever -did- run!"

They needed no exhortation.

Quicker than we can say it,

the whole party were over the fence,

making with all speed for the rocks,

while Michael,

throwing himself from his horse,

and fastening the bridle to the wagon,

began driving it rapidly away.

"Come ahead,"

said Phineas,

as they reached the rocks,

and saw in the mingled starlight and dawn,

the traces of a rude but plainly marked foot-path leading up among them;

"this is one of our old hunting-dens.

Come up!"

Phineas went before,

springing up the rocks like a goat,

with the boy in his arms.

Jim came second,

bearing his trembling old mother over his shoulder,

and George and Eliza brought up the rear.

The party of horsemen came up to the fence,


with mingled shouts and oaths,

were dismounting,

to prepare to follow them.

A few moments' scrambling brought them to the top of the ledge;

the path then passed between a narrow defile,

where only one could walk at a time,

till suddenly they came to a rift or chasm more than a yard in breadth,

and beyond which lay a pile of rocks,

separate from the rest of the ledge,

standing full thirty feet high,

with its sides steep and perpendicular as those of a castle.

Phineas easily leaped the chasm,

and sat down the boy on a smooth,

flat platform of crisp white moss,

that covered the top of the rock.

"Over with you!"

he called;




for your lives!"

said he,

as one after another sprang across.

Several fragments of loose stone formed a kind of breast-work,

which sheltered their position from the observation of those below.


here we all are,"

said Phineas,

peeping over the stone breast-work to watch the assailants,

who were coming tumultuously up under the rocks.


'em get us,

if they can.

Whoever comes here has to walk single file between those two rocks,

in fair range of your pistols,


d'ye see?"

"I do see,"

said George!

"and now,

as this matter is ours,

let us take all the risk,

and do all the fighting."

"Thee's quite welcome to do the fighting,


said Phineas,

chewing some checkerberry-leaves as he spoke;

"but I may have the fun of looking on,

I suppose.

But see,

these fellows are kinder debating down there,

and looking up,

like hens when they are going to fly up on to the roost.

Hadn't thee better give

'em a word of advice,

before they come up,

just to tell

'em handsomely they'll be shot if they do?"

The party beneath,

now more apparent in the light of the dawn,

consisted of our old acquaintances,

Tom Loker and Marks,

with two constables,

and a posse consisting of such rowdies at the last tavern as could be engaged by a little brandy to go and help the fun of trapping a set of niggers.



yer coons are farly treed,"

said one.


I see

'em go up right here,"

said Tom;

"and here's a path.

I'm for going right up.

They can't jump down in a hurry,

and it won't take long to ferret

'em out."



they might fire at us from behind the rocks,"

said Marks.

"That would be ugly,

you know."


said Tom,

with a sneer.

"Always for saving your skin,


No danger!

niggers are too plaguy scared!"

"I don't know why I -shouldn't- save my skin,"

said Marks.

"It's the best I've got;

and niggers -do- fight like the devil,


At this moment,

George appeared on the top of a rock above them,


speaking in a calm,

clear voice,



who are you,

down there,

and what do you want?"

"We want a party of runaway niggers,"

said Tom Loker.

"One George Harris,

and Eliza Harris,

and their son,

and Jim Selden,

and an old woman.

We've got the officers,


and a warrant to take


and we're going to have



D'ye hear?

An't you George Harris,

that belongs to Mr. Harris,

of Shelby county,


"I am George Harris.

A Mr. Harris,

of Kentucky,

did call me his property.

But now I'm a free man,

standing on God's free soil;

and my wife and my child I claim as mine.

Jim and his mother are here.

We have arms to defend ourselves,

and we mean to do it.

You can come up,

if you like;

but the first one of you that comes within the range of our bullets is a dead man,

and the next,

and the next;

and so on till the last."




said a short,

puffy man,

stepping forward,

and blowing his nose as he did so.

"Young man,

this an't no kind of talk at all for you.

You see,

we're officers of justice.

We've got the law on our side,

and the power,

and so forth;

so you'd better give up peaceably,

you see;

for you'll certainly have to give up,

at last."

"I know very well that you've got the law on your side,

and the power,"

said George,


"You mean to take my wife to sell in New Orleans,

and put my boy like a calf in a trader's pen,

and send Jim's old mother to the brute that whipped and abused her before,

because he couldn't abuse her son.

You want to send Jim and me back to be whipped and tortured,

and ground down under the heels of them that you call masters;

and your laws -will- bear you out in it,

--more shame for you and them!

But you haven't got us.

We don't own your laws;

we don't own your country;

we stand here as free,

under God's sky,

as you are;


by the great God that made us,

we'll fight for our liberty till we die."

George stood out in fair sight,

on the top of the rock,

as he made his declaration of independence;

the glow of dawn gave a flush to his swarthy cheek,

and bitter indignation and despair gave fire to his dark eye;


as if appealing from man to the justice of God,

he raised his hand to heaven as he spoke.

If it had been only a Hungarian youth,

now bravely defending in some mountain fastness the retreat of fugitives escaping from Austria into America,

this would have been sublime heroism;

but as it was a youth of African descent,

defending the retreat of fugitives through America into Canada,

of course we are too well instructed and patriotic to see any heroism in it;

and if any of our readers do,

they must do it on their own private responsibility.

When despairing Hungarian fugitives make their way,

against all the search-warrants and authorities of their lawful government,

to America,

press and political cabinet ring with applause and welcome.

When despairing African fugitives do the same thing,

--it is --what -is- it?

Be it as it may,

it is certain that the attitude,




of the speaker for a moment struck the party below to silence.

There is something in boldness and determination that for a time hushes even the rudest nature.

Marks was the only one who remained wholly untouched.

He was deliberately cocking his pistol,


in the momentary silence that followed George's speech,

he fired at him.

"Ye see ye get jist as much for him dead as alive in Kentucky,"

he said coolly,

as he wiped his pistol on his coat-sleeve.

George sprang backward,

--Eliza uttered a shriek,

--the ball had passed close to his hair,

had nearly grazed the cheek of his wife,

and struck in the tree above.

"It's nothing,


said George,


"Thee'd better keep out of sight,

with thy speechifying,"

said Phineas;

"they're mean scamps."



said George,

"look that your pistols are all right,

and watch that pass with me.

The first man that shows himself I fire at;

you take the second,

and so on.

It won't do,

you know,

to waste two shots on one."

"But what if you don't hit?"

"I -shall- hit,"

said George,




there's stuff in that fellow,"

muttered Phineas,

between his teeth.

The party below,

after Marks had fired,


for a moment,

rather undecided.

"I think you must have hit some on


said one of the men.

"I heard a squeal!"

"I'm going right up for one,"

said Tom.

"I never was afraid of niggers,

and I an't going to be now.

Who goes after?"

he said,

springing up the rocks.

George heard the words distinctly.

He drew up his pistol,

examined it,

pointed it towards that point in the defile where the first man would appear.

One of the most courageous of the party followed Tom,


the way being thus made,

the whole party began pushing up the rock,

--the hindermost pushing the front ones faster than they would have gone of themselves.

On they came,

and in a moment the burly form of Tom appeared in sight,

almost at the verge of the chasm.

George fired,

--the shot entered his side,


though wounded,

he would not retreat,


with a yell like that of a mad bull,

he was leaping right across the chasm into the party.


said Phineas,

suddenly stepping to the front,

and meeting him with a push from his long arms,

"thee isn't wanted here."

Down he fell into the chasm,

crackling down among trees,



loose stones,

till he lay bruised and groaning thirty feet below.

The fall might have killed him,

had it not been broken and moderated by his clothes catching in the branches of a large tree;

but he came down with some force,


--more than was at all agreeable or convenient.

"Lord help us,

they are perfect devils!"

said Marks,

heading the retreat down the rocks with much more of a will than he had joined the ascent,

while all the party came tumbling precipitately after him,

--the fat constable,

in particular,

blowing and puffing in a very energetic manner.

"I say,


said Marks,

"you jist go round and pick up Tom,


while I run and get on to my horse to go back for help,

--that's you;"


without minding the hootings and jeers of his company,

Marks was as good as his word,

and was soon seen galloping away.

"Was ever such a sneaking varmint?"

said one of the men;

"to come on his business,

and he clear out and leave us this yer way!"


we must pick up that feller,"

said another.

"Cuss me if I much care whether he is dead or alive."

The men,

led by the groans of Tom,

scrambled and crackled through stumps,

logs and bushes,

to where that hero lay groaning and swearing with alternate vehemence.

"Ye keep it agoing pretty loud,


said one.

"Ye much hurt?"

"Don't know.

Get me up,

can't ye?

Blast that infernal Quaker!

If it hadn't been for him,

I'd a pitched some on

'em down here,

to see how they liked it."

With much labor and groaning,

the fallen hero was assisted to rise;


with one holding him up under each shoulder,

they got him as far as the horses.

"If you could only get me a mile back to that ar tavern.

Give me a handkerchief or something,

to stuff into this place,

and stop this infernal bleeding."

George looked over the rocks,

and saw them trying to lift the burly form of Tom into the saddle.

After two or three ineffectual attempts,

he reeled,

and fell heavily to the ground.


I hope he isn't killed!"

said Eliza,


with all the party,

stood watching the proceeding.

"Why not?"

said Phineas;

"serves him right."

"Because after death comes the judgment,"

said Eliza.


said the old woman,

who had been groaning and praying,

in her Methodist fashion,

during all the encounter,

"it's an awful case for the poor crittur's soul."

"On my word,

they're leaving him,

I do believe,"

said Phineas.

It was true;

for after some appearance of irresolution and consultation,

the whole party got on their horses and rode away.

When they were quite out of sight,

Phineas began to bestir himself.


we must go down and walk a piece,"

he said.

"I told Michael to go forward and bring help,

and be along back here with the wagon;

but we shall have to walk a piece along the road,

I reckon,

to meet them.

The Lord grant he be along soon!

It's early in the day;

there won't be much travel afoot yet a while;

we an't much more than two miles from our stopping-place.

If the road hadn't been so rough last night,

we could have outrun

'em entirely."

As the party neared the fence,

they discovered in the distance,

along the road,

their own wagon coming back,

accompanied by some men on horseback.



there's Michael,

and Stephen and Amariah,"

exclaimed Phineas,


"Now we -are- made --as safe as if we'd got there."


do stop,


said Eliza,

"and do something for that poor man;

he's groaning dreadfully."

"It would be no more than Christian,"

said George;

"let's take him up and carry him on."

"And doctor him up among the Quakers!"

said Phineas;

"pretty well,



I don't care if we do.


let's have a look at him;"

and Phineas,

who in the course of his hunting and backwoods life had acquired some rude experience of surgery,

kneeled down by the wounded man,

and began a careful examination of his condition.


said Tom,


"is that you,



I reckon

'tan't friend,"

said Phineas.

"Much Marks cares for thee,

if his own skin's safe.

He's off,

long ago."

"I believe I'm done for,"

said Tom.

"The cussed sneaking dog,

to leave me to die alone!

My poor old mother always told me

't would be so."

"La sakes!

jist hear the poor crittur.

He's got a mammy,


said the old negress.

"I can't help kinder pityin' on him."



don't thee snap and snarl,


said Phineas,

as Tom winced and pushed his hand away.

"Thee has no chance,

unless I stop the bleeding."

And Phineas busied himself with making some off-hand surgical arrangements with his own pocket-handkerchief,

and such as could be mustered in the company.

"You pushed me down there,"

said Tom,


"Well if I hadn't thee would have pushed us down,

thee sees,"

said Phineas,

as he stooped to apply his bandage.



--let me fix this bandage.

We mean well to thee;

we bear no malice.

Thee shall be taken to a house where they'll nurse thee first rate,

well as thy own mother could."

Tom groaned,

and shut his eyes.

In men of his class,

vigor and resolution are entirely a physical matter,

and ooze out with the flowing of the blood;

and the gigantic fellow really looked piteous in his helplessness.

The other party now came up.

The seats were taken out of the wagon.

The buffalo-skins,

doubled in fours,

were spread all along one side,

and four men,

with great difficulty,

lifted the heavy form of Tom into it.

Before he was gotten in,

he fainted entirely.

The old negress,

in the abundance of her compassion,

sat down on the bottom,

and took his head in her lap.


George and Jim,

bestowed themselves,

as well as they could,

in the remaining space and the whole party set forward.

"What do you think of him?"

said George,

who sat by Phineas in front.

"Well it's only a pretty deep flesh-wound;



tumbling and scratching down that place didn't help him much.

It has bled pretty freely,

--pretty much drained him out,

courage and all,

--but he'll get over it,

and may be learn a thing or two by it."

"I'm glad to hear you say so,"

said George.

"It would always be a heavy thought to me,

if I'd caused his death,

even in a just cause."


said Phineas,

"killing is an ugly operation,

any way they'll fix it,

--man or beast.

I've seen a buck that was shot down and a dying,

look that way on a feller with his eye,

that it reely most made a feller feel wicked for killing on him;

and human creatures is a more serious consideration yet,


as thy wife says,

that the judgment comes to

'em after death.

So I don't know as our people's notions on these matters is too strict;


considerin' how I was raised,

I fell in with them pretty considerably."

"What shall you do with this poor fellow?"

said George.


carry him along to Amariah's.

There's old Grandmam Stephens there,


they call her,

--she's most an amazin' nurse.

She takes to nursing real natural,

and an't never better suited than when she gets a sick body to tend.

We may reckon on turning him over to her for a fortnight or so."

A ride of about an hour more brought the party to a neat farmhouse,

where the weary travellers were received to an abundant breakfast.

Tom Loker was soon carefully deposited in a much cleaner and softer bed than he had ever been in the habit of occupying.

His wound was carefully dressed and bandaged,

and he lay languidly opening and shutting his eyes on the white window-curtains and gently-gliding figures of his sick room,

like a weary child.

And here,

for the present,

we shall take our leave of one party.


Miss Ophelia's Experiences and Opinions

Our friend Tom,

in his own simple musings,

often compared his more fortunate lot,

in the bondage into which he was cast,

with that of Joseph in Egypt;


in fact,

as time went on,

and he developed more and more under the eye of his master,

the strength of the parallel increased.

St. Clare was indolent and careless of money.

Hitherto the providing and marketing had been principally done by Adolph,

who was,

to the full,

as careless and extravagant as his master;


between them both,

they had carried on the dispersing process with great alacrity.


for many years,

to regard his master's property as his own care,

Tom saw,

with an uneasiness he could scarcely repress,

the wasteful expenditure of the establishment;


in the quiet,

indirect way which his class often acquire,

would sometimes make his own suggestions.

St. Clare at first employed him occasionally;


struck with his soundness of mind and good business capacity,

he confided in him more and more,

till gradually all the marketing and providing for the family were intrusted to him.




he said,

one day,

as Adolph was deprecating the passing of power out of his hands;

"let Tom alone.

You only understand what you want;

Tom understands cost and come to;

and there may be some end to money,

bye and bye if we don't let somebody do that."

Trusted to an unlimited extent by a careless master,

who handed him a bill without looking at it,

and pocketed the change without counting it,

Tom had every facility and temptation to dishonesty;

and nothing but an impregnable simplicity of nature,

strengthened by Christian faith,

could have kept him from it.


to that nature,

the very unbounded trust reposed in him was bond and seal for the most scrupulous accuracy.

With Adolph the case had been different.

Thoughtless and self-indulgent,

and unrestrained by a master who found it easier to indulge than to regulate,

he had fallen into an absolute confusion as to -meum tuum- with regard to himself and his master,

which sometimes troubled even St. Clare.

His own good sense taught him that such a training of his servants was unjust and dangerous.

A sort of chronic remorse went with him everywhere,

although not strong enough to make any decided change in his course;

and this very remorse reacted again into indulgence.

He passed lightly over the most serious faults,

because he told himself that,

if he had done his part,

his dependents had not fallen into them.

Tom regarded his gay,


handsome young master with an odd mixture of fealty,


and fatherly solicitude.

That he never read the Bible;

never went to church;

that he jested and made free with any and every thing that came in the way of his wit;

that he spent his Sunday evenings at the opera or theatre;

that he went to wine parties,

and clubs,

and suppers,

oftener than was at all expedient,

--were all things that Tom could see as plainly as anybody,

and on which he based a conviction that "Mas'r wasn't a Christian;"

--a conviction,


which he would have been very slow to express to any one else,

but on which he founded many prayers,

in his own simple fashion,

when he was by himself in his little dormitory.

Not that Tom had not his own way of speaking his mind occasionally,

with something of the tact often observable in his class;


for example,

the very day after the Sabbath we have described,

St. Clare was invited out to a convivial party of choice spirits,

and was helped home,

between one and two o'clock at night,

in a condition when the physical had decidedly attained the upper hand of the intellectual.

Tom and Adolph assisted to get him composed for the night,

the latter in high spirits,

evidently regarding the matter as a good joke,

and laughing heartily at the rusticity of Tom's horror,

who really was simple enough to lie awake most of the rest of the night,

praying for his young master.



what are you waiting for?"

said St. Clare,

the next day,

as he sat in his library,

in dressing-gown and slippers.

St. Clare had just been entrusting Tom with some money,

and various commissions.

"Isn't all right there,


he added,

as Tom still stood waiting.


'fraid not,


said Tom,

with a grave face.

St. Clare laid down his paper,

and set down his coffee-cup,

and looked at Tom.

"Why Tom,

what's the case?

You look as solemn as a coffin."

"I feel very bad,


I allays have thought that Mas'r would be good to everybody."



haven't I been?



what do you want?

There's something you haven't got,

I suppose,

and this is the preface."

"Mas'r allays been good to me.

I haven't nothing to complain of on that head.

But there is one that Mas'r isn't good to."



what's got into you?

Speak out;

what do you mean?"

"Last night,

between one and two,

I thought so.

I studied upon the matter then.

Mas'r isn't good to -himself-."

Tom said this with his back to his master,

and his hand on the door-knob.

St. Clare felt his face flush crimson,

but he laughed.


that's all,

is it?"

he said,



said Tom,

turning suddenly round and falling on his knees.


my dear young Mas'r;


'fraid it will be -loss of all --all ---body and soul.

The good Book says,

'it biteth like a serpent and stingeth like an adder!'

my dear Mas'r!"

Tom's voice choked,

and the tears ran down his cheeks.

"You poor,

silly fool!"

said St. Clare,

with tears in his own eyes.

"Get up,


I'm not worth crying over."

But Tom wouldn't rise,

and looked imploring.


I won't go to any more of their cursed nonsense,


said St. Clare;

"on my honor,

I won't.

I don't know why I haven't stopped long ago.

I've always despised -it-,

and myself for it,

--so now,


wipe up your eyes,

and go about your errands.



he added,

"no blessings.

I'm not so wonderfully good,


he said,

as he gently pushed Tom to the door.


I'll pledge my honor to you,


you don't see me so again,"

he said;

and Tom went off,

wiping his eyes,

with great satisfaction.

"I'll keep my faith with him,


said St. Clare,

as he closed the door.

And St. Clare did so,

--for gross sensualism,

in any form,

was not the peculiar temptation of his nature.


all this time,

who shall detail the tribulations manifold of our friend Miss Ophelia,

who had begun the labors of a Southern housekeeper?

There is all the difference in the world in the servants of Southern establishments,

according to the character and capacity of the mistresses who have brought them up.

South as well as north,

there are women who have an extraordinary talent for command,

and tact in educating.

Such are enabled,

with apparent ease,

and without severity,

to subject to their will,

and bring into harmonious and systematic order,

the various members of their small estate,

--to regulate their peculiarities,

and so balance and compensate the deficiencies of one by the excess of another,

as to produce a harmonious and orderly system.

Such a housekeeper was Mrs. Shelby,

whom we have already described;

and such our readers may remember to have met with.

If they are not common at the South,

it is because they are not common in the world.

They are to be found there as often as anywhere;


when existing,

find in that peculiar state of society a brilliant opportunity to exhibit their domestic talent.

Such a housekeeper Marie St. Clare was not,

nor her mother before her.

Indolent and childish,

unsystematic and improvident,

it was not to be expected that servants trained under her care should not be so likewise;

and she had very justly described to Miss Ophelia the state of confusion she would find in the family,

though she had not ascribed it to the proper cause.

The first morning of her regency,

Miss Ophelia was up at four o'clock;

and having attended to all the adjustments of her own chamber,

as she had done ever since she came there,

to the great amazement of the chambermaid,

she prepared for a vigorous onslaught on the cupboards and closets of the establishment of which she had the keys.

The store-room,

the linen-presses,

the china-closet,

the kitchen and cellar,

that day,

all went under an awful review.

Hidden things of darkness were brought to light to an extent that alarmed all the principalities and powers of kitchen and chamber,

and caused many wonderings and murmurings about "dese yer northern ladies" from the domestic cabinet.

Old Dinah,

the head cook,

and principal of all rule and authority in the kitchen department,

was filled with wrath at what she considered an invasion of privilege.

No feudal baron in -Magna Charta- times could have more thoroughly resented some incursion of the crown.

Dinah was a character in her own way,

and it would be injustice to her memory not to give the reader a little idea of her.

She was a native and essential cook,

as much as Aunt Chloe,

--cooking being an indigenous talent of the African race;

but Chloe was a trained and methodical one,

who moved in an orderly domestic harness,

while Dinah was a self-taught genius,


like geniuses in general,

was positive,

opinionated and erratic,

to the last degree.

Like a certain class of modern philosophers,

Dinah perfectly scorned logic and reason in every shape,

and always took refuge in intuitive certainty;

and here she was perfectly impregnable.

No possible amount of talent,

or authority,

or explanation,

could ever make her believe that any other way was better than her own,

or that the course she had pursued in the smallest matter could be in the least modified.

This had been a conceded point with her old mistress,

Marie's mother;

and "Miss Marie,"

as Dinah always called her young mistress,

even after her marriage,

found it easier to submit than contend;

and so Dinah had ruled supreme.

This was the easier,

in that she was perfect mistress of that diplomatic art which unites the utmost subservience of manner with the utmost inflexibility as to measure.

Dinah was mistress of the whole art and mystery of excuse-making,

in all its branches.


it was an axiom with her that the cook can do no wrong;

and a cook in a Southern kitchen finds abundance of heads and shoulders on which to lay off every sin and frailty,

so as to maintain her own immaculateness entire.

If any part of the dinner was a failure,

there were fifty indisputably good reasons for it;

and it was the fault undeniably of fifty other people,

whom Dinah berated with unsparing zeal.

But it was very seldom that there was any failure in Dinah's last results.

Though her mode of doing everything was peculiarly meandering and circuitous,

and without any sort of calculation as to time and place,

--though her kitchen generally looked as if it had been arranged by a hurricane blowing through it,

and she had about as many places for each cooking utensil as there were days in the year,


if one would have patience to wait her own good time,

up would come her dinner in perfect order,

and in a style of preparation with which an epicure could find no fault.

It was now the season of incipient preparation for dinner.


who required large intervals of reflection and repose,

and was studious of ease in all her arrangements,

was seated on the kitchen floor,

smoking a short,

stumpy pipe,

to which she was much addicted,

and which she always kindled up,

as a sort of censer,

whenever she felt the need of an inspiration in her arrangements.

It was Dinah's mode of invoking the domestic Muses.

Seated around her were various members of that rising race with which a Southern household abounds,

engaged in shelling peas,

peeling potatoes,

picking pin-feathers out of fowls,

and other preparatory arrangements,

--Dinah every once in a while interrupting her meditations to give a poke,

or a rap on the head,

to some of the young operators,

with the pudding-stick that lay by her side.

In fact,

Dinah ruled over the woolly heads of the younger members with a rod of iron,

and seemed to consider them born for no earthly purpose but to "save her steps,"

as she phrased it.

It was the spirit of the system under which she had grown up,

and she carried it out to its full extent.

Miss Ophelia,

after passing on her reformatory tour through all the other parts of the establishment,

now entered the kitchen.

Dinah had heard,

from various sources,

what was going on,

and resolved to stand on defensive and conservative ground,

--mentally determined to oppose and ignore every new measure,

without any actual observable contest.

The kitchen was a large brick-floored apartment,

with a great old-fashioned fireplace stretching along one side of it,

--an arrangement which St. Clare had vainly tried to persuade Dinah to exchange for the convenience of a modern cook-stove.

Not she.

No Puseyite,* or conservative of any school,

was ever more inflexibly attached to time-honored inconveniences than Dinah.

* Edward Bouverie Pusey (1800-1882),

champion of the orthodoxy of revealed religion,

defender of the Oxford movement,

and Regius professor of Hebrew and Canon of Christ Church,


When St. Clare had first returned from the north,

impressed with the system and order of his uncle's kitchen arrangements,

he had largely provided his own with an array of cupboards,


and various apparatus,

to induce systematic regulation,

under the sanguine illusion that it would be of any possible assistance to Dinah in her arrangements.

He might as well have provided them for a squirrel or a magpie.

The more drawers and closets there were,

the more hiding-holes could Dinah make for the accommodation of old rags,


old shoes,


cast-off artificial flowers,

and other articles of -vertu-,

wherein her soul delighted.

When Miss Ophelia entered the kitchen Dinah did not rise,

but smoked on in sublime tranquillity,

regarding her movements obliquely out of the corner of her eye,

but apparently intent only on the operations around her.

Miss Ophelia commenced opening a set of drawers.

"What is this drawer for,


she said.

"It's handy for most anything,


said Dinah.

So it appeared to be.

From the variety it contained,

Miss Ophelia pulled out first a fine damask table-cloth stained with blood,

having evidently been used to envelop some raw meat.

"What's this,


You don't wrap up meat in your mistress' best table-cloths?"

"O Lor,



the towels was all a missin' --so I jest did it.

I laid out to wash that a,

--that's why I put it thar."


said Miss Ophelia to herself,

proceeding to tumble over the drawer,

where she found a nutmeg-grater and two or three nutmegs,

a Methodist hymn-book,

a couple of soiled Madras handkerchiefs,

some yarn and knitting-work,

a paper of tobacco and a pipe,

a few crackers,

one or two gilded china-saucers with some pomade in them,

one or two thin old shoes,

a piece of flannel carefully pinned up enclosing some small white onions,

several damask table-napkins,

some coarse crash towels,

some twine and darning-needles,

and several broken papers,

from which sundry sweet herbs were sifting into the drawer.

"Where do you keep your nutmegs,


said Miss Ophelia,

with the air of one who prayed for patience.

"Most anywhar,


there's some in that cracked tea-cup,

up there,

and there's some over in that ar cupboard."

"Here are some in the grater,"

said Miss Ophelia,

holding them up.



I put

'em there this morning,

--I likes to keep my things handy,"

said Dinah.



what are you stopping for!

You'll cotch it!

Be still,


she added,

with a dive of her stick at the criminal.

"What's this?"

said Miss Ophelia,

holding up the saucer of pomade.


it's my har -grease-;

--I put it thar to have it handy."

"Do you use your mistress' best saucers for that?"


it was cause I was driv,

and in sich a hurry;

--I was gwine to change it this very day."

"Here are two damask table-napkins."

"Them table-napkins I put thar,

to get

'em washed out,

some day."

"Don't you have some place here on purpose for things to be washed?"


Mas'r St. Clare got dat ar chest,

he said,

for dat;

but I likes to mix up biscuit and hev my things on it some days,

and then it an't handy a liftin' up the lid."

"Why don't you mix your biscuits on the pastry-table,




it gets sot so full of dishes,

and one thing and another,

der an't no room,

noway --"

"But you should -wash- your dishes,

and clear them away."

"Wash my dishes!"

said Dinah,

in a high key,

as her wrath began to rise over her habitual respect of manner;

"what does ladies know

'bout work,

I want to know?


'd Mas'r ever get his dinner,

if I vas to spend all my time a washin' and a puttin' up dishes?

Miss Marie never telled me so,



here are these onions."



said Dinah;

"thar -is- whar I put



I couldn't



's particular onions I was a savin' for dis yer very stew.

I'd forgot they was in dat ar old flannel."

Miss Ophelia lifted out the sifting papers of sweet herbs.

"I wish Missis wouldn't touch dem ar.

I likes to keep my things where I knows whar to go to


said Dinah,

rather decidedly.

"But you don't want these holes in the papers."


's handy for siftin' on

't out,"

said Dinah.

"But you see it spills all over the drawer."



if Missis will go a tumblin' things all up so,

it will.

Missis has spilt lots dat ar way,"

said Dinah,

coming uneasily to the drawers.

"If Missis only will go up stars till my clarin' up time comes,

I'll have everything right;

but I can't do nothin' when ladies is round,

a henderin'.



don't you gib the baby dat ar sugar-bowl!

I'll crack ye over,

if ye don't mind!"

"I'm going through the kitchen,

and going to put everything in order,



and then I'll expect you to -keep- it so."



Miss Phelia;

dat ar an't no way for ladies to do.

I never did see ladies doin' no sich;

my old Missis nor Miss Marie never did,

and I don't see no kinder need on


and Dinah stalked indignantly about,

while Miss Ophelia piled and sorted dishes,

emptied dozens of scattering bowls of sugar into one receptacle,

sorted napkins,


and towels,

for washing;



and arranging with her own hands,

and with a speed and alacrity which perfectly amazed Dinah.

"Lor now!

if dat ar de way dem northern ladies do,

dey an't ladies,


she said to some of her satellites,

when at a safe hearing distance.

"I has things as straight as anybody,

when my clarin' up times comes;

but I don't want ladies round,

a henderin',

and getting my things all where I can't find


To do Dinah justice,

she had,

at irregular periods,

paroxyms of reformation and arrangement,

which she called "clarin' up times,"

when she would begin with great zeal,

and turn every drawer and closet wrong side outward,

on to the floor or tables,

and make the ordinary confusion seven-fold more confounded.

Then she would light her pipe,

and leisurely go over her arrangements,

looking things over,

and discoursing upon them;

making all the young fry scour most vigorously on the tin things,

and keeping up for several hours a most energetic state of confusion,

which she would explain to the satisfaction of all inquirers,

by the remark that she was a "clarin' up."

"She couldn't hev things a gwine on so as they had been,

and she was gwine to make these yer young ones keep better order;"

for Dinah herself,


indulged the illusion that she,


was the soul of order,

and it was only the -young uns-,

and the everybody else in the house,

that were the cause of anything that fell short of perfection in this respect.

When all the tins were scoured,

and the tables scrubbed snowy white,

and everything that could offend tucked out of sight in holes and corners,

Dinah would dress herself up in a smart dress,

clean apron,

and high,

brilliant Madras turban,

and tell all marauding "young uns" to keep out of the kitchen,

for she was gwine to have things kept nice.


these periodic seasons were often an inconvenience to the whole household;

for Dinah would contract such an immoderate attachment to her scoured tin,

as to insist upon it that it shouldn't be used again for any possible purpose,

--at least,

till the ardor of the "clarin' up" period abated.

Miss Ophelia,

in a few days,

thoroughly reformed every department of the house to a systematic pattern;

but her labors in all departments that depended on the cooperation of servants were like those of Sisyphus or the Danaides.

In despair,

she one day appealed to St. Clare.

"There is no such thing as getting anything like a system in this family!"

"To be sure,

there isn't,"

said St. Clare.

"Such shiftless management,

such waste,

such confusion,

I never saw!"

"I dare say you didn't."

"You would not take it so coolly,

if you were housekeeper."

"My dear cousin,

you may as well understand,

once for all,

that we masters are divided into two classes,

oppressors and oppressed.

We who are good-natured and hate severity make up our minds to a good deal of inconvenience.

If we -will keep- a shambling,


untaught set in the community,

for our convenience,


we must take the consequence.

Some rare cases I have seen,

of persons,


by a peculiar tact,

can produce order and system without severity;

but I'm not one of them,

--and so I made up my mind,

long ago,

to let things go just as they do.

I will not have the poor devils thrashed and cut to pieces,

and they know it,


of course,

they know the staff is in their own hands."

"But to have no time,

no place,

no order,

--all going on in this shiftless way!"

"My dear Vermont,

you natives up by the North Pole set an extravagant value on time!

What on earth is the use of time to a fellow who has twice as much of it as he knows what to do with?

As to order and system,

where there is nothing to be done but to lounge on the sofa and read,

an hour sooner or later in breakfast or dinner isn't of much account.


there's Dinah gets you a capital dinner,



roast fowl,


ice-creams and all,

--and she creates it all out of chaos and old night down there,

in that kitchen.

I think it really sublime,

the way she manages.


Heaven bless us!

if we are to go down there,

and view all the smoking and squatting about,

and hurryscurryation of the preparatory process,

we should never eat more!

My good cousin,

absolve yourself from that!

It's more than a Catholic penance,

and does no more good.

You'll only lose your own temper,

and utterly confound Dinah.

Let her go her own way."



you don't know how I found things."

"Don't I?

Don't I know that the rolling-pin is under her bed,

and the nutmeg-grater in her pocket with her tobacco,

--that there are sixty-five different sugar-bowls,

one in every hole in the house,

--that she washes dishes with a dinner-napkin one day,

and with a fragment of an old petticoat the next?

But the upshot is,

she gets up glorious dinners,

makes superb coffee;

and you must judge her as warriors and statesmen are judged,

-by her success-."

"But the waste,

--the expense!"



Lock everything you can,

and keep the key.

Give out by driblets,

and never inquire for odds and ends,

--it isn't best."

"That troubles me,


I can't help feeling as if these servants were not -strictly honest-.

Are you sure they can be relied on?"

Augustine laughed immoderately at the grave and anxious face with which Miss Ophelia propounded the question.



that's too good,


---as if that's a thing to be expected!



of course,

they arn't.

Why should they be?

What upon earth is to make them so?"

"Why don't you instruct?"




What instructing do you think I should do?

I look like it!

As to Marie,

she has spirit enough,

to be sure,

to kill off a whole plantation,

if I'd let her manage;

but she wouldn't get the cheatery out of them."

"Are there no honest ones?"


now and then one,

whom Nature makes so impracticably simple,

truthful and faithful,

that the worst possible influence can't destroy it.


you see,

from the mother's breast the colored child feels and sees that there are none but underhand ways open to it.

It can get along no other way with its parents,

its mistress,

its young master and missie play-fellows.

Cunning and deception become necessary,

inevitable habits.

It isn't fair to expect anything else of him.

He ought not to be punished for it.

As to honesty,

the slave is kept in that dependent,

semi-childish state,

that there is no making him realize the rights of property,

or feel that his master's goods are not his own,

if he can get them.

For my part,

I don't see how they -can- be honest.

Such a fellow as Tom,



--is a moral miracle!"

"And what becomes of their souls?"

said Miss Ophelia.

"That isn't my affair,

as I know of,"

said St. Clare;

"I am only dealing in facts of the present life.

The fact is,

that the whole race are pretty generally understood to be turned over to the devil,

for our benefit,

in this world,

however it may turn out in another!"

"This is perfectly horrible!"

said Miss Ophelia;

"you ought to be ashamed of yourselves!"

"I don't know as I am.

We are in pretty good company,

for all that,"

said St. Clare,

"as people in the broad road generally are.

Look at the high and the low,

all the world over,

and it's the same story,

--the lower class used up,


soul and spirit,

for the good of the upper.

It is so in England;

it is so everywhere;

and yet all Christendom stands aghast,

with virtuous indignation,

because we do the thing in a little different shape from what they do it."

"It isn't so in Vermont."



in New England,

and in the free States,

you have the better of us,

I grant.

But there's the bell;



let us for a while lay aside our sectional prejudices,

and come out to dinner."

As Miss Ophelia was in the kitchen in the latter part of the afternoon,

some of the sable children called out,



thar's Prue a coming,

grunting along like she allers does."

A tall,

bony colored woman now entered the kitchen,

bearing on her head a basket of rusks and hot rolls.



you've come,"

said Dinah.

Prue had a peculiar scowling expression of countenance,

and a sullen,

grumbling voice.

She set down her basket,

squatted herself down,

and resting her elbows on her knees said,

"O Lord!

I wish't I

's dead!"

"Why do you wish you were dead?"

said Miss Ophelia.

"I'd be out o' my misery,"

said the woman,


without taking her eyes from the floor.

"What need you getting drunk,


and cutting up,


said a spruce quadroon chambermaid,


as she spoke,

a pair of coral ear-drops.

The woman looked at her with a sour surly glance.

"Maybe you'll come to it,

one of these yer days.

I'd be glad to see you,

I would;

then you'll be glad of a drop,

like me,

to forget your misery."



said Dinah,

"let's look at your rusks.

Here's Missis will pay for them."

Miss Ophelia took out a couple of dozen.

"Thar's some tickets in that ar old cracked jug on the top shelf,"

said Dinah.



climb up and get it down."


--what are they for?"

said Miss Ophelia.

"We buy tickets of her Mas'r,

and she gives us bread for


"And they counts my money and tickets,

when I gets home,

to see if I

's got the change;

and if I han't,

they half kills me."

"And serves you right,"

said Jane,

the pert chambermaid,

"if you will take their money to get drunk on.

That's what she does,


"And that's what I -will- do,

--I can't live no other ways,

--drink and forget my misery."

"You are very wicked and very foolish,"

said Miss Ophelia,

"to steal your master's money to make yourself a brute with."

"It's mighty likely,


but I will do it,


I will.

O Lord!

I wish I

's dead,

I do,

--I wish I

's dead,

and out of my misery!"

and slowly and stiffly the old creature rose,

and got her basket on her head again;

but before she went out,

she looked at the quadroon girt,

who still stood playing with her ear-drops.

"Ye think ye're mighty fine with them ar,

a frolickin' and a tossin' your head,

and a lookin' down on everybody.


never mind,

--you may live to be a poor,


cut-up crittur,

like me.

Hope to the Lord ye will,

I do;

then see if ye won't drink,



--yerself into torment;

and sarve ye right,

too --ugh!"


with a malignant howl,

the woman left the room.

"Disgusting old beast!"

said Adolph,

who was getting his master's shaving-water.

"If I was her master,

I'd cut her up worse than she is."

"Ye couldn't do that ar,

no ways,"

said Dinah.

"Her back's a far sight now,

--she can't never get a dress together over it."

"I think such low creatures ought not to be allowed to go round to genteel families,"

said Miss Jane.

"What do you think,

Mr. St. Clare?"

she said,

coquettishly tossing her head at Adolph.

It must be observed that,

among other appropriations from his master's stock,

Adolph was in the habit of adopting his name and address;

and that the style under which he moved,

among the colored circles of New Orleans,

was that of -Mr. St. Clare-.

"I'm certainly of your opinion,

Miss Benoir,"

said Adolph.

Benoir was the name of Marie St. Clare's family,

and Jane was one of her servants.


Miss Benoir,

may I be allowed to ask if those drops are for the ball,

tomorrow night?

They are certainly bewitching!"

"I wonder,


Mr. St. Clare,

what the impudence of you men will come to!"

said Jane,

tossing her pretty head

'til the ear-drops twinkled again.

"I shan't dance with you for a whole evening,

if you go to asking me any more questions."


you couldn't be so cruel,


I was just dying to know whether you would appear in your pink tarletane,"

said Adolph.

"What is it?"

said Rosa,

a bright,

piquant little quadroon who came skipping down stairs at this moment.


Mr. St. Clare's so impudent!"

"On my honor,"

said Adolph,

"I'll leave it to Miss Rosa now."

"I know he's always a saucy creature,"

said Rosa,

poising herself on one of her little feet,

and looking maliciously at Adolph.

"He's always getting me so angry with him."




you will certainly break my heart,

between you,"

said Adolph.

"I shall be found dead in my bed,

some morning,

and you'll have it to answer for."

"Do hear the horrid creature talk!"

said both ladies,

laughing immoderately.


--clar out,


I can't have you cluttering up the kitchen,"

said Dinah;

"in my way,

foolin' round here."

"Aunt Dinah's glum,

because she can't go to the ball,"

said Rosa.

"Don't want none o' your light-colored balls,"

said Dinah;

"cuttin' round,

makin' b'lieve you's white folks.

Arter all,

you's niggers,

much as I am."

"Aunt Dinah greases her wool stiff,

every day,

to make it lie straight,"

said Jane.

"And it will be wool,

after all,"

said Rosa,

maliciously shaking down her long,

silky curls.


in the Lord's sight,

an't wool as good as har,

any time?"

said Dinah.

"I'd like to have Missis say which is worth the most,

--a couple such as you,

or one like me.

Get out wid ye,

ye trumpery,

--I won't have ye round!"

Here the conversation was interrupted in a two-fold manner.

St. Clare's voice was heard at the head of the stairs,

asking Adolph if he meant to stay all night with his shaving-water;

and Miss Ophelia,

coming out of the dining-room,


"Jane and Rosa,

what are you wasting your time for,


Go in and attend to your muslins."

Our friend Tom,

who had been in the kitchen during the conversation with the old rusk-woman,

had followed her out into the street.

He saw her go on,

giving every once in a while a suppressed groan.

At last she set her basket down on a doorstep,

and began arranging the old,

faded shawl which covered her shoulders.

"I'll carry your basket a piece,"

said Tom,


"Why should ye?"

said the woman.

"I don't want no help."

"You seem to be sick,

or in trouble,

or somethin',"

said Tom.

"I an't sick,"

said the woman,


"I wish,"

said Tom,

looking at her earnestly,

--"I wish I could persuade you to leave off drinking.

Don't you know it will be the ruin of ye,

body and soul?"

"I knows I'm gwine to torment,"

said the woman,


"Ye don't need to tell me that ar.


's ugly,


's wicked,


's gwine straight to torment.



I wish I

's thar!"

Tom shuddered at these frightful words,

spoken with a sullen,

impassioned earnestness.


Lord have mercy on ye!

poor crittur.

Han't ye never heard of Jesus Christ?"

"Jesus Christ,

--who's he?"


he's -the Lord-,"

said Tom.

"I think I've hearn tell o' the Lord,

and the judgment and torment.

I've heard o' that."

"But didn't anybody ever tell you of the Lord Jesus,

that loved us poor sinners,

and died for us?"

"Don't know nothin'

'bout that,"

said the woman;

"nobody han't never loved me,

since my old man died."

"Where was you raised?"

said Tom.

"Up in Kentuck.

A man kept me to breed chil'en for market,

and sold

'em as fast as they got big enough;

last of all,

he sold me to a speculator,

and my Mas'r got me o' him."

"What set you into this bad way of drinkin'?"

"To get shet o' my misery.

I had one child after I come here;

and I thought then I'd have one to raise,

cause Mas'r wasn't a speculator.

It was de peartest little thing!

and Missis she seemed to think a heap on


at first;

it never cried,

--it was likely and fat.

But Missis tuck sick,

and I tended her;

and I tuck the fever,

and my milk all left me,

and the child it pined to skin and bone,

and Missis wouldn't buy milk for it.

She wouldn't hear to me,

when I telled her I hadn't milk.

She said she knowed I could feed it on what other folks eat;

and the child kinder pined,

and cried,

and cried,

and cried,

day and night,

and got all gone to skin and bones,

and Missis got sot agin it and she said

't wan't nothin' but crossness.

She wished it was dead,

she said;

and she wouldn't let me have it o' nights,


she said,

it kept me awake,

and made me good for nothing.

She made me sleep in her room;

and I had to put it away off in a little kind o' garret,

and thar it cried itself to death,

one night.

It did;

and I tuck to drinkin',

to keep its crying out of my ears!

I did,

--and I will drink!

I will,

if I do go to torment for it!

Mas'r says I shall go to torment,

and I tell him I've got thar now!"


ye poor crittur!"

said Tom,

"han't nobody never telled ye how the Lord Jesus loved ye,

and died for ye?

Han't they telled ye that he'll help ye,

and ye can go to heaven,

and have rest,

at last?"

"I looks like gwine to heaven,"

said the woman;

"an't thar where white folks is gwine?

S'pose they'd have me thar?

I'd rather go to torment,

and get away from Mas'r and Missis.

I had -so-,"

she said,

as with her usual groan,

she got her basket on her head,

and walked sullenly away.

Tom turned,

and walked sorrowfully back to the house.

In the court he met little Eva,

--a crown of tuberoses on her head,

and her eyes radiant with delight.



here you are.

I'm glad I've found you.

Papa says you may get out the ponies,

and take me in my little new carriage,"

she said,

catching his hand.

"But what's the matter Tom?

--you look sober."

"I feel bad,

Miss Eva,"

said Tom,


"But I'll get the horses for you."

"But do tell me,


what is the matter.

I saw you talking to cross old Prue."


in simple,

earnest phrase,

told Eva the woman's history.

She did not exclaim or wonder,

or weep,

as other children do.

Her cheeks grew pale,

and a deep,

earnest shadow passed over her eyes.

She laid both hands on her bosom,

and sighed heavily.