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naked flesh of my fellow-servants as well as fel-1: tional mistakes and errors in conduct, and this low creatures ? At least, sir, when my duty, is one.” made it absolutely necessary, I could not do it I Mast. “ Have you tried it? You cannot say it without the utmost horror.' I beseech you par- | is a mistake till you have tried and proved it to don me if I have such a tenderness in my nature, be so." that though I might be fit to be your servant, I Jack. “ Your whole plantation is a proof of it. am incapable of being an executioner, having This very fellow had never acted as he did if he been an offender myself."
had not gotten rum in his head, and been out of Mast, « Well, but how then can my business the government of himself; so that indeed all the be done: and how will this terrible obstinacy of offence I ought to have punished him for had the negroes, who, they tell ine, can be no other. | been that of stealing a bottle of rum, and drinking wisc governed, be kept from neglect of their work,
it all up; in which case, like Noah, he did not or even insolence and rebellion ?"
know the strength of it, and when he had it in his
head he was a madman, he was as one raging Jack. “This brings me, sir, to the latter part
and distracted; so that, for all the rest, he deof my defence ; and here I hope your honour will be pleased to call my accusers, or that you will
served pity rather than punishment,
Mast. “ Thou art right, certainly right, and give yourself the trouble of taking the exactest view of your plantation, and see, or let them show
thou wilt be a rare fellow if thou canst bring you, if anything is neglected, if your business has
|| these notions into practice : I wish you had tried suffered in anything, or if your negroes or other
it upon any one particular negrn, that I might
see an example; I would give 5001. it could be servants are under less government than they
brought to bear." were before; and if, on the contrary, I have found
Jack. “I desire nothing, sir, but your favour out that happy secret to have good order kept, the business of the plantation done, and that with
and the advantage of obliging you; I will show
you an example of it among your own negroes, diligence and dispatch, and that the negroes are kept in awe, the natural temper of them sub
and all the plantation will acknowledge it.”
Mast. “ You make my very heart glad within jected, and the safety and peace of your family l. secured, as well by gentle means as by rough, by
me, Jack; if you can bring this to pass, I here moderate correction as by torture and barbarity,
give you my word I'll not only give you your own by a due awe of just discipline as by the horror of
freedom, but make a man of you for this world as
long as you live." insufferable torments, I hope your honour will not lay that sin to my charge.”
1 Upon this I bowed to him very respectfully,
and told him the following story. There is a Mast. “ No, indeed; you would be the most ac
negro, sir, in your plantation, who has been your ceptable manager that ever I employed; but how then does this consist with the cruel sentence you
servant several years before I came; he did a had passed on the poor fellow ihat is in your con
fault that was of no great consequence in itself, demned hole yonder, who was to be whipped
but perhaps would have been worse if they had eight times in four days?
indeed gone farther, and I had him brought into
the usual place and tied him by the thumbs for Jack. “ Very well, sir; first, sir, he remains
correction, and he was told that he should be under the terrible apprehensions of a punishment
whipped and pickled in a dreadful manner. After 20 severe as no negro ever had before; this fellow,
I had made proper impressions on his mind of the with your leave, I intended to release to-morrow
terror of his punishment, and found that he was without any whipping at all, after talking to him
sufficiently humbled by it, I went into the house in my way about his offence, and raising in his
and caused him to be brought out, just as they do mind a sense of the value of pardon; and if this
when they go to correct the negroes on such makes him a better servant than the severest
occasions : when he was stripped and tied up, he whipping will do, then I presume you would
had two lashes given him that were indeed very allow I have gained a point."
cruel ones, and I called to them to hold. “Hold," Mast. “ Ay, but what if it should not be so? said I to the two men that had just begun to lay for these fellows have no sense of gratitude."
on upon the poor fellow', “hold," said I; “let me Jack. “ That is, sir, because they are never talk to him." pardoned; if they offend, they never know what | So he was taken down. Then I began and mercy is, and what then have they to be grate represented to him how kind you, that were his ful for?"
great master, * had been to him ; that you had Mast. « Thou art in the right indeed; where never done him any harm, that you had used there is no mercy shown, there is no obligation him gently, and he had never been brought to laid upon them."
this punishment in so many years, though he had Jack. “ Besides, air, if they have at any time done some faults before ; that this was a notorious been let go, which is very seldoni, they are not offence, for he had stolen some rum, and made told what the case is; they take no pains with himself and two other negroes drunk-mad,t and them to imprint principles of gratitude on their bad abused two women negroes who had husminds, to tell them what kindness is shown them, and what they are indebted for it, and what they
* So the negroes call the owner of the plantation, ! might gain in the end by it."
or at least so they called him, because he was a Mast. “ But do you think such usage would
great man in the country, having three or four large do? Would it make any impression? You per
plantations. guade yourself it would, but you see 'tis against ||
+ To be drunk in a negro is to be mad; for when the received notion of the whole country.”
they get rum they are worse than raving, and fit to Jack. “ There are, it may be, public and na. Il do any manner of mischief.
'tis all a new scene of negro life to me, and very | them, and work upon their reason, to make the moving.”
mercy that was showed them sink deep into their Jack. “ For a good while he stood as if he had | minds, and give lasting impressions ; explain been thunderstruck and stupid; but, looking the meaning of gratitude to them, and the nature steadily at me, though not speaking a word, at of an obligation, and the like, as I had done with last he mutters to himself, with a kind of a laugh, || Mouchat.”
_“Ay, ay," says he, “ Mouchat sec, Mouchat no Mast. “ I am answered; your method is cer. see; me wakee, me no wakee; no hangee, no tainly right, and I desire you may go on with it; hangee; he live truly, very live;" and then on a for I desire nothing on this side heaven more sudden he runs to me, snatches me away as if I || than to have all my negroes serve me from prin. had been a boy of ten years old, and takes me up | ciples of gratitude for my kindness to them: 1 upon his back, and runs away with me, till I was abhor to be feared like a lion, like a tyrant; it fain to cry out to him to stop; then he sets me is a violence upon nature every way, and is the down, and looks at me again, then falls a dancing most disagreeable thing in the world to a gene. about me, as if he had been bewitched, just as rous mind." you have seen them do about their wives and | Jack. “ But, sir, I am doubtful that you may children when they are merry.
not believe that I intended to act thus with Well, then he began to talk with me, and told those poor fellows; I beseech you to send for me what they had said to him, how I was to be Mr- , that he may tell you what we had hanged. “Well," says I, “ Mouchat, and would agreed on, before I speak with him.” you have been satisfied to be hanged to save || Mast.“ What reason have I to doubt that ?" ine? “ Yes, yes,” says he, “be truly hangee toll Jack. “I hope you have not; but I should be beggee you."
very sorry you should think me capable of exe“But why do you love me so well, Mouchat ?"
cuting such a sentence as you have heard me said I.
own I had passed on them, and there can be no “ Did you no beggee me,” he says, “at the way effectually to clear it up but this." great master? You savee me, make great master i
Mast. “ Well, seeing you put so much weight muchee good, muchee kind, no whippee me; me no forget ; me be whipped, be hanged, that you
upon it, he shall be called for." no be hanged; me die that you no die; me no let
| He was accordingly called, and being ordered any bad be with you all while that me live.”
| by the master to tell the measures that were Now, sir, your honour may judge whether kind
ind concerted between us for the punishment or ness, well managed, would not oblige these peo
management of those negroes, he gave it just as ple as well as cruelty; and whether there are||
| I had done before. principles of gratitude in them or no.
Jack.“ I hope, sir, you are now not only sa. Mast. “ But what, then, can be the reason
tisfied of the truth of the account I gave, relating that we never believed it to be so before ?"
to the method we had agreed on; but of its Jack. “ Truly, sir, I fear that Mouchat gave
being so proper, and so likely to answer your
end." the true reason." Mast.“ What was that, pray? that we were
Mast. “ I am fully satisfied, and shall be glad too cruel ?
to see that it answers the end; for, as I have Jack. “ That they never had any mercy showed
said, nothing can be more agreeable to me, them; that they never tried them whether they
|| nothing has so much robbed me of the comfort of would be grateful or no; that if they did a fault,
|| all my fortunes, as the cruelty used, in my name, they were never spared, but punished with the
on the bodies of those poor slaves." utmost cruelty; so that they had no passion, no
Jack. “ It is certainly wrong, sir; it is not affection to act upon, but that of fear, which ne
| only wrong, as it is barbarous and cruel, but it is cessarily brought hatred with it, but that if they ll wrong too, as it is the worst way of managing were used with compassion, they would serve with
and of having your business done." affection as well as other servants : nature is the
Mast. “ It is my aversion, it fills my very soul same, and reason governs in just proportions in
with horror; I believe, if I should come by while all creatures; but, having never been let taste
they were using those cruelties on the poor what mercy is, they know not how to act from a
creatures, I should either sink down at the sight principle of love."
of it, or fly into a rage, and kill the fellow that Mast. “ I am convinced it is so; but now, pray
did it, though it is done too by my own authotell me, how did you put this in practice with the
rity.” poor negroes now in bonds yonder, when you
Jack. “ But, sir, I dare say I shall convince passed such a cruel sentence upon them, that
you also that it is wrong in respect of interest; they should be whipped twice a-day for four days
and that your business shall be better discharged, together; was that showing mercy ?"
and your plantations better ordered, and more Jack. “My method was just the same; and if
work done by the negroes, who shall be engaged you please to inquire of Mr __ your other/ by mercy and lenity, than by those who are servant, you will be satisfied that it was so; for
driven and dragged by the whips and the chains we agreed upon the same measures as I took
of a merciless tormentor." with Mouchat ; namely, first to put them into Mast. “ I think the nature of the thing speaks the utmost horror and apprehensions of the || for itself; doubtless it should be so, and I have cruelest punishment that they ever heard of, and often thought it would be so, and a thousand thereby enhance the value of their pardon, which times wished it might be so; but all my English was to come as from yourself, but not without people pretended otherwise, and that it is imour great intercession; then I was to argue with Il possible to bring the negroes to any sense of
kindness, and consequently not to any obedience || negrocs of the nature and reason of it, and to of love."
show them what they ought to do in return for Jack. “ It may be true, sir, that there may be it; but it was perhaps the effect of negligence, found here and there a negro of a senseless, |ill conduct, and want of application to the busistupid, sordid disposition, perfectly untractable, || ness of the plantation; and then it was no wonindocile, and incapable of due impressions; es. lder that the negroes took the advantage of it. pecially incapable of the generosity of principle Well, I carried on the affair with these two which I am speaking of. You know very well, negroes, just as I did with Mouchat, so I need sir, there are such among the Christians, as well not repeat the particulars; and they were deas among the negroes; whence else came the livered with infinite acknowledgments and thanks, English proverb, That if you save a thief from even to all the extravagancies of joy usual in the gallows, he shall be the first to cut your those people on such occasions; and such was throat. But, sir, if such a refractory, indocile | the gratitude of those two pardoned fellows, that fellow comes in our way, he must be dealt with, they were the most faithful and most diligent first, by the smooth ways to try him, then by the servants ever after that belonged to the whole violent way to break his temper, as they break a plantation, Mouchat excepted. horse; and, if nothing will do, such a wretch In this manner I carried on the plantation should be sold off, and others bought in his fully to his satisfaction; and before a year more room; for the peace of the plantation should not was expired, there was scarce any such thing as be broken for one devilish tempered fellow : and correction known in the plantation, except upon if this was done, I doubt not you would have all || a few boys, who were incapable of the impresyour plantation carried on, and your work done, sions that good usage would have made, even and not a negro or a servant upon it, but what upon them too, till they had lived to know the would not only work for you, but even die for ll difference. vou, if there was an occasion for it. as you see It was some time after this conference that this poor Mouchat would have done for me." ll our great master, as we called him, sent for me
Mast. “ Well, go on with your measures, and again to his dwelling-house, and told me he had may you succeed; I'll promise you I will fully had an answer from England from his friend, to make you amends for it; I long to have these | whom he had written about my bill. I was a cruelties out of use, in my plantation especially; | little afraid that he was going to ask me leave to as for others, let them do as they will.”
send it to London; but he did not say anything
like that, but told me that his friend had been CHAPTER X.
with the gentleman, and that he owned the bill,
and that he had all the money in his hand that HT MASTER GIVES ME MY LIBERTY, AND PUTS ME l the bill had mentioned; but that he had proINTO A PLANTATION FOR MYSELF-PROCEEDINGS
// mised the young man that had given him the AS A PLANTER I GET MY BILL CASHED IN LON
money (meaning me) not to pay the money to DON, AND A SORTED PARCEL OF GOODS SENT OUT anybody but himself, though they should bring FOR ITS AMOUNT--THE GREATEST PART OF THEM | the bill; the reason of which was, that I did not ARE LOST AT THE MOUTH OF THE BAY--REFLEC know who might get the bill away from me. TIONS.
“ But now, Colonel Jack,” says he, “ as you Our master being gone, I went to the prison- | wrote him an account where you was, and by ers, and, first, I suffered them to be told that the |what wicked arts you were trepanned, and that great master had been there, and that he had it was impossible for you to have your liberty till been inclined to pardon them, till he knew what you could get the money; my friend at London their crime was; but then he said it was so has written to me, that, upon making out a due great a fault that it must be punished. Besides, | copy of the bill here, attested by a notary, and the man that talked to them told them that the sent to him, and your obligation likewise atgreat master said that he knew if he had par-li tested, whereby you oblige yourself to deliver the doned them they would but be the worse, for that original to his order, after the money is paid, he the negroes were never thankful for being spared, I will pay the money." and that there were no other ways to make them I told him I was willing to do whatever his obedient but by severity.
|| honour directed; and so the proper copies were One of the poor fellows, more sensible than the drawn, as I had been told were required. other, answered, if any negro be badder for being “ But now, what will you do with this money, kindly used, they should be whipped till they Jack ?" says he, smiling ; “ will you buy your were muchee better; but that he never knew | liberty of me, and go to planting ?" that, for that he never knew the negro be kindly l I was too cunning for him now indeed, for I use.
remembered what he had promised me; and I This was the same thing as the other had !) had too much knowledge of the honesty of his said, and, indeed, was but too true, for the over- ll principles, as well as of the kindness he had for seers really knew no such thing as mercy; and me, to doubt his being as good as his word; so that notion, of the negroes being no other way to | I turned all this talk of his upon him another be governed but by cruelty, had been the occa. I way. I knew that when he asked me if I would sion that no other method was ever tried among buy my liberty and go to planting, it was to try them.
if I would leave him ; so I said, “ As to buying Again, if a slack hand bad at any time been my liberty, sir, that is to say going out of your held upon them, it had not been done with dis- service, I had much rather buy more time in cretion, or as a point of mercy, and managed | your service, and I am only unhappy that I have with tbe assistance of argument to convince the 1! but two years to serve."
“ Come, come, Colonel,” says he,“ don't || run away, or so often plot mischief against their flatter me; I love plain dealing ; liberty is pre- master, as they do in those. cious to everybody: if you have a mind to have I have dwelt the longer upon it, that, if possible, your money brought over, you shall have your posterity might be persuaded to try gentler meliberty to begin for yourself, and I will take care thods with those miserable creatures, and to use you shall be well used by the country, and get them with humanity; assuring them, that if they you a good plantation."
did so, adding the common prudence that every I still insisted that I would not quit his service particular casc would direct them to for itself, for the best plantation in Maryland : that he had the negroes would do their work faithfully and been so good to me, and I believed I was so useful cheerfully; they would not find any of that reto him, that I could not think of it, and at last || fractoriness and sullenness in their temper, I added, I hoped he could not believe but I had that they pretend now to complain of; but they as much gratitude as a negro.
would be the same as their Christian servants, He smiled, and said he would not be served ) except that they would be the more thankful, and upon those terms; that he did not forget what he humble, and laborious, of the two. had promised, nor what I had done in his planta- || I continued in this station between five and six tion; and that he was resolved in the first place || years after this, and in all that time we had not to give me my liberty : so he pulls out a piece of one negro whipped, except, as I observed before, paper, and throws it to me: “ There," says he, now and then an unlucky boy, and that only for * there's a certificate of your coming on shore, and ! trifles. I cannot say but we had some ill-natured, being sold to me for five years, of which you have ungovernable negroes; but if at any time such lived three with me, and now you are your own offended they were pardoned the first time, in the master.” I bowed, and told him that I was sure, l manner as above; and the second time were or. if I was my own master, I would be his servant as dered to be turned out of the plantation; and long as he would accept of my service; and now this was remarkable, that they would torment wo strained courtesies, and he told me I should be themselves at the apprehension of being turned his servant still; but it should be on two condi- l) away, more by a great deal than if they had been tions, Ist, that he would give me 301. a year and to be whipped, for then they were only sullen and my board, for my managing the plantation I was heavy; nay, at length we found the fear of being then employed in ; and, 2dly, that at the same turned out of the plantation had as much effect time he would procure me a new plantation to to reform them, that is to say, make them more begin upon for my own account; “ For, Colonel diligent than any torture would have done ; and Jack,” says he, smiling, “though you are but a the reason was evident, namely, because in our young man, yet 'tis time you were doing some plantation they were used like men, in the others thing for yourself."
like dogs. I answered, that I could do little at a plantation My master owned the satisfaction he took in for myself, unless I neglected his business, which this blessed change, as he called it, as long as he I was resolved not to do on any terms whatever ; lived ; and as he was so engaged, by seeing the but that I would serve him faithfully, if he would negroes grateful, he showed the same principle of accept of me, as long as he lived. “ So you shall,” gratitude to those that served him, as he looked says he again; "and serve yourself too." And for in those that he served; and particularly to thus we parted for that time.
me, and so I come briefly to that part. The first Here I am to observe in the general, to avoid thing he did after giving me my liberty, as above, dwelling too long upon a story, that as the two and making me an allowance, was to get the negroes, who I delivered from punishment, were country bounty to me, that is to say, a quantity ever after the most diligent and laborious poor of land to begin and plant for myself. fellows in the whole plantation, as above, except But this he managed a way by himself ; and, as Mouchat, of whom I shall speak more by and by, I found afterwards, took up, that is, purchased in so they not only were grateful themselves for my name, about three hundred acres of land, in a their good usage, but they influenced the whole more convenient place than it would have other. plantation : so that the gentle usage and lenity, wise been allotted me; and this he did by his inwith which they had been treated, had a thousand || terest with the lord proprietor; so that I had an
influence upon them, to make them | extent of ground marked out to me, not next, but diligent, than all the blows and kicks, whippings, very near one of his own plantations. When I and other tortures could have, which they had made my acknowledgment for this to him, he told been used to, and now the plantation was famous me plainly, that I was not beholden to him for it for it; so that several other planters began to do at all ; for he did it that I might not be obliged the same, though I cannot say it was with the to neglect his business for the carrying on my same success, which might be for want of taking own, and on that account he would not reckon to pains with them, and working upon their passions me what money he paid, which, however, acin a right manner. It appeared that negroes were cording to the custom of the country, was not a to be reasoned into things as well as other people, very great sum; I think about 401. or 501. and it was by thus managing their reason that Thus he very generously gave me my liberty, most of the work was done.
advanced this money for me, put me into a planHowever, as it was, the plantations in Maryland tation for myself, and gave me 301. a year wages were the better for this undertaking, and they || for looking after one of his own plantations. are to this day less cruel and barbarous to their I“ But, Colonel," says he to me, “giving you negroes than they are in Barbadoes and Jamaica ; | this plantation is nothing at all to you, if I do not and 'tis observed the begroes are not in these assist you to support it and to carry it on; and colonies so desperate, neither do they so often therefore I will give you credit for whatever is needful to you for the carrying it on; such as || Thus the naked planter has credit at his betools, provisions for servants, and some servants || ginning, and immediately goes to work to cure to begin; materials to build out-houses, and con- | the land and plant tobacco; and from this little veniencies of all sorts for the plantation, and to beginning have some of the most cousiderable buy hogs, cows, horses for stock, and the like, and planters in Virginia, and in Maryland also, raised I'll take it out of your cargo, which will come from themselves; namely, from being without a hat, London, for the money of your bill."
or a shoe, to estates of forty or fifty thousand This was highly obliging and very kind, and the pounds; and in this method, I may add, no dilimore so, as it afterwards appeared. In order to l gent man ever miscarried, if he had health to this, he sent two servants of his own, who were || work, and was a good man; for he every carpenters; as for timber, boards, planks, and all || year increases a little, and every year adding sorts of such things, in a country almost all made more land and planting more tobacco, which is of wood, they could not be wanting: these run | real money, he must gradually increase in subme up a little wooden house in less than three stance, till at length he gets enough to buy neweeks' time, where I had three rooms, a kitchen, 1 groes and other servants, and then never works an out-house, and two large sheds at a distance || himself any more. from the house, for store-houses, almost like | In a word, every Newgate wretch, every desbarns, with stables at the end of them; and thus perate forlorn creature, the most despicable ruined I was set up in the world, and, in short, removed man in the world, has here a fair opportunity put by the degrees that you have heard, from a pick- || into his hands to begin the world again, and pocket to a kidnapped miserable slave in Virginia that upon a footing of certain gain, and in a me. (for Maryland is Virginia, speaking of them at thod exactly honest; with a reputation that a distance); then from a slave to a head officer nothing past will have any effect upon : and inor overseer of slaves, and from thence to a master numerable people have raised themselves from the planter.
worst circumstances in the world, namely, from I had now, as above, a house, a stable, two the cells in Newgate. warehouses, and 300 acres of land ; but, as we But I return to my own story : I was now a say, bare walls make giddy hussies, so I had || planter, and encouraged by a kind benefactor; neither axe nor hatchet to cut down the trees; for, that I might not be wholly taken up with my horse nor hog, nor cow to put upon the land; not new plantation, he gave me freely, and without a hoe, or a spade, to break ground, nor a pair | any consideration, my grateful negro Mouchat. of hands, but my own, to go to work upon it. He told me it was a debt due to the affection that
But heaven and kind masters make up all those il poor creature had always had for me, and so things to a diligent servant; and I mention it, || indeed it was, for as the fellow would once have because people who are either transported, or || been hanged for me, so now, and to his last, he otherwise trepanned into those places, are gene- || loved me so much, that it was apparent he did rally thought to be rendered miserable, and un- ll everything with pleasure that he did for me : done; whereas, on the contrary, I would encourage | and he was so overcome of joy when he heard that them, upon my own experience, to depend upon || he was to be my negro, that the people in the it, that if their own diligence in the time of service plantation really thought it would turn his head, gains them but a good character, which it will and that the fellow would go distracted. certainly do if they can deserve it, there is not Besides this, he sent me two servants more, a the poorest and most despicable felon that ever || man and a woman, but these he put to my acwent over, but may, after his time is served, count, as above. Mouchat and these two fell begin for himself, and may in time be sure of immediately to work for me; and they began with raising a good plantation.
about two acres of land, which had but little timFor example, I will now take a man in the || ber on it at first, and most of that was cut down meanest circumstances of a servant, who has by the two carpenters who built my house, or served out his five or seven years (suppose a shed rather, for so it should be called. transported wretch for seven years): the custom These two acres I got in good forwardness, and of the place was then (what it is since I know most of it well planted with tobacco; though Dot) that on his master's certifying that he had some of it we were obliged to plant with gardenserved his time out faithfully, he had fifty acres stuff for food; such as potatoes, carrots, cabof land allotted him for planting, and on this plan bages, pease, beans, &c. he begins.
It was a great advantage to me that I had so Some had a horse, a cow, and three hogs || bountiful a master, who helped me out in ever given, or rather lent them, as a stock for the land, case ; for in this very first year I received a terri. which they made an allowance for at a certain ble blow; for my bill, as I have observed, having time and rate.
been copied, and attested in form, and sent to Custom has made it a trade to give credit to London, my kind friend and custom-house gensuch beginners as these, for tools, clothes-nails, || tleman paid me the money; and the merchant at iron-work, and other things necessary for their | London, by my good master's direction, had laid planting ; and which the persons, so giving credit || it all out in a sorted cargo of goods for me, such to them, are to be paid for, out of the crop of || as would have made a man of me all at once; but, tobacco which they shall plant; nor is it in the 1. to my inexpressible terror and surprise, the ship debtor's power to defraud the creditor of pay- || was lost, and that just at the entrance into the Inent in that manner; and as tobacco is their capes, that is to say, the mouth of the bay; some coin, as well as their product, so all things are to of the goods were recovered, but spoiled, and in be purchased at a certain quantity of tobacco, short, nothing but the nails, tools, and iron-work, the price being so rated.
Il were good for anything; and though the value