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Parthenia Antoinette Hague, A blockaded family: Life in southern Alabama during the war, Chapter 6: (search)
ter mammy; he's got an axe in his hand and says he's gwine ter kill her dis berry night. Where Phillis was hiding the little girls knew not. She was not in the kitchen, nor in her cabin; neither hadse to her master and mistress. Her's dodgina 'round to keep out'en daddy's way, the younger of Phillis's girls declared. We all became deeply interested in Aunt Phillis's troubles, and dropped our d girls of the household came also into our room to hear Martha and Maria tell of Ben's chasing Phillis around with the axe, and soon we had ten all told around the fire, all gathered close together.le Ben was at his wife's heels, and that one of us might catch the hurl of the axe intended for Phillis. We braced our shoulders against the door with all our strength, but Uncle Ben was prudent enoe imprint of that accident. Mr. G-- also hastened to our room, and, finding that Ben was after Phillis with an axe, got his gun, and from the rear hall door peered forth into the bleak night for Ben
ung ladies, when you go reluctantly to your calisthenics, and when you turn a deaf ear to the teacher who begs that you will not neglect the cultivation of the biceps flexor cubiti and the deltoid muscles, remember that the time may come when you will regret your negligence — when, in fact, and not to put too fine a point upon it, you may desire to assault somebody in pantaloons, and may yet be afraid to do it. See what hard training — constant practice, we suppose upon Topsey and Dinah and Phillis — has done for Miss Slidell! Why, the moment she gets into her agony, she proceeds as naturally to strike somebody, as if she had been striking somebody all her life. See her squaring off — no, that is vulgar — see her going through the preliminary gesticulations before poor Fairfax! It is a subject for a picture. It should be put upon canvas, and hung up in the Confederate Capitol--when there is one. Miss Slidell, with flashing orbs and tangled hair and crimson cheek and curling co
es, and there the town-meetings were held. In Cambridge a Court-House, built in 1708, was used also as a Town-House; it stood in the middle of Harvard Square, near the waiting-place of the Broadway and East Cambridge cars. Winthrop Square was an open market-place, and on its west side after 1660 stood the jail. The place of execution, or Gallows Lot, was at the extreme end of the Common, on the northwest corner of Linnaean Street and North Avenue. There in 1755 an old negro woman named Phillis was burned alive for murdering her master, Captain Codman, of Charlestown. In bringing together the various topographical features of Old Cambridge in its early days, the strict sequence of chronology has been to some extent disregarded. We may now return to the year 1632, when the Court of Assistants imposed a tax of sixty pounds sterling upon the several plantations within the lymitts of this pattent towards the makeing of a pallysadoe aboute the Newe Towne. Here the men of Watertown
wretched convicts who suffered the extreme penalty of the law at this Place of execution, are unknown to me. One horrible example, however, was recorded by Professor Winthrop, in his interleaved Almanac, under date of Sept. 18, 1755: A terrible spectacle in Cambridge: two negroes belonging to Capt. Codman of Charlestown, executed for petit treason, for murdering their said master by poison. They were drawn upon a sled to the place of execution; and Mark, a fellow about 30, was hanged; and Phillis, an old creature, was burnt to death. The Boston Evening Post, of Sept. 22, states more particularly, that the fellow was hanged, and the woman burned at a stake about ten yards distant from the gallows. They both confessed themselves guilty of the crime for which they suffered, acknowledged the justice of their sentence, and died very penitent. After execution, the body of Mark was brought down to Charlestown Common, and hanged in chains on a gibbet erected there for that purpose. Dr.
A very Old person. --A black woman named Phillis, who belonged to Mr. E. O. Watkins, of Chesterfield, recently died at the extraordinary age of one hundred and eighteen years! At the age of one hundred and ten she married her third husband. She retained her senses in remarkable vigor to the time of her death. Her afflicted husband, who must have been devoted to her with a sort of idolatry, wandered off after her death and has never been heard of since. It is feared he perished in the woods or by drowning in the river. This is quite a remarkable story! but we are assured on the best authority that it is strictly true. It may be called a black tragedy.
Mayor's Court. --Besides the cases mentioned above, there were several matters of less interest before the Mayor yesterday: Churchill, slave of George Duggins, was charged with breaking and entering in the night time, the store-house of Robert B. Smith, on Brook Avenue, and stealing several thousand dollars worth of groceries.--In the absence of witnesses the case was continued till Saturday. Peter, slave of Dr. Theo. P Mayo, was ordered to be whipped for stealing a pound and a quarter of sugar from J. H. Haymond. Fanny, slave of George Thomas, and Charlotte and Phillis, slaves of Mrs. Yarrington, were ordered to be whipped for being disorderly in the street, and using profane and disorderly language. Lewis H. Allen, charged with foreing the name of Mr. John H. Baptist to an order on the post office for letters, was turned over to Confederate Commissioner Sands.