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John James Geer, Beyond the lines: A Yankee prisoner loose in Dixie 3 1 Browse Search
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ess bountiful. It is painful to consider what might have been, under other circumstances, the amount of general wealth in Virginia, or the whole sum of comfortable subsistence and happiness possessed by all her inhabitants. --Addressed to the Legislature of Virginia, 1820. In the course of a conversation I had with the old slave woman, Kate, I said: Aunt Katy, if the slaves were to be freed, it would not do you much good, for you are old, and will soon pass into eternity. Thank de Lord, sah, she replied, I am ready to go! But, oh! I wish I could only see my children and grandchildren in hope of freedom! And dar's my husband. You see his massa might sell him, and den I don't think I could live. Dar's no danger of my massa selling me, for he's a good man, and he's let me and my children learn to read, and I learned my husband. What is the law in Georgia on that point? I asked. God bless you, sah! they'd penitentiary a man for learning a slave to read.
fellow creatures. Such a course ought to be considered a solemn mockery of, and insult to, that God whose protection we had implored, and it could not fail to hold us up to the detestation and contempt of every true friend of liberty in the world. National crimes can only be, and frequently are punished, at least, in the world, by national calamities. And if we thus give national sanction to the slave trade, we justly expose ourselves to the displeasure and vengeance of Him who is equally Lord of all, and who views with equal eye the poor African slave and his American master. The same fire which dictated the above, burned also in Captain Riley's heart, when he exclaimed: Strange as it may seem to the philanthropist, my free and proud-spirited countrymen still hold a million and a half of human beings in the most cruel bonds of slavery, who are kept at hard labor, and, smarting under the lash of inhuman, mercenary drivers, in many instances enduring the miseries of hunge