and claimed him as a fugitive slave, whom he had bought running.
The constable employed to serve the warrant was ashamed to drag the good man through the streets; and he merely said, in a respectful tone, ‘Mr. Allen
, you will soon come down to Alderman Todd
's office, will you?’
The fugitive, whom they were seeking, had absconded only four years previous; and everybody in Philadelphia
knew that Richard Allen
had been living there more than twenty years. Yet the speculator and his sons swore unblushingly that he was the identical slave they had purchased.
thought he ought to have some redress for this outrage; ‘For,’ said he, ‘if it had not been for the kindness of the officer, I might have been dragged through the streets like a felon.’
Isaac T. Hopper
was consulted, and a civil suit commenced.
Eight hundred dollars bail was demanded, and the speculator, being unable to procure it, was lodged in the debtor's prison.
When he had been there three months, Mr. Allen
caused him to be discharged; saying he did not wish to persecute the man, but merely to teach him not to take up free people again, for the purpose of carrying them into slavery.
The numerous instances of respectability among the colored people were doubtless to be attributed in part to the protecting influence extended over them