These friendly remonstrances produced such effect, that the master agreed to manumit his bondman, and give a written obligation that he should be comfortably supported during the remainder of his life, by him or his heirs.
When the papers were prepared the slave was called into the parlor, and Isaac Jackson
inquired, ‘Would'st thou like to be free?’
He promptly answered that he should.
The Friend suggested that he was now too feeble to labor much, and inquired how he would manage to obtain a living.
The old man meekly replied, ‘Providence
has been kind to me thus far; and I am willing to trust him the rest of my life.’
then held up the papers and said, ‘Thou art a free man. Thy master has manumitted thee, and promised to maintain thee as long as thou mayest live.’
This was so unexpected, that the aged bondman was completely overcome.
For a few moments, he remained in profound silence; then, with a sudden impulse, he fell on his knees, and poured forth a short and fervent prayer of thanksgiving to his Heavenly Father, for prolonging his life till he had the happiness to feel himself a free man.
The master and his adviser were both surprised and affected by this eloquent outburst of grateful feeling.
The poor old servant had seemed so comfortable and contented, that no one supposed freedom