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    CHAPTER XIV.
  --  LETTER FROM THE OWNER OF ELIZABETH.   Table of Contents     CHAPTER XVI.
  --  SOLICITING HELP ABROAD TO BUY A MOTHER.

Mattison, Hiram
Louisa Picquet, the Octoroon

- CHAPTER XV. -- PRIVATE EFFORTS TO BUY THE MOTHER.

CHAPTER XV.
PRIVATE EFFORTS TO BUY THE MOTHER.


Mrs. Picquet's first plan was to draw her husband's wages two years in advance. He was in the employ of Mr. John Carlisle, of Cincinnati, and was willing to have the fruit of his labor thus taken in advance to restore his mother-in-law to freedom, and to the embrace of her daughter. But how were they to live these two years? The two years' labor would only amount to about five hundred dollars, at most; and how to get the remaining five hundred dollars, and take care of themselves and family at the same time, was the insurmountable difficulty. Mrs. P. was anxious to sell every thing she had to help buy the mother, but all she had on earth would bring but little. For one whole year Mrs. P. saved every penny she could, even denying herself many of the comforts of life; and the amount of all this rigid economy was only sixty dollars saved. By this time she began to be discouraged. She talked with friends, and they advised her to go out and solicit money for the purpose. This she was reluctant to do. She had her family of four young children to care for, as well as her husband; had never traveled, except from New Orleans to Cincinnati, and dreaded to go out for such a purpose. She knew that many were abroad soliciting money for such purposes, and feared it would be in vain for her to make the attempt. But her mother was in bondage, and she resolved to make the attempt at all hazards.

The Press of Cincinnati gave the effort their encouragement The Daily Gazette of Saturday, March 10, contained the following:
"TO THE BENEVOLENT OF CINCINNATI."

"Louisa Picquet, though to all appearance white, is, nevertheless, a colored woman. She was born a slave, and has a mother and brother now in slavery in Texas. She is personally known to me. She is in our midst, appealing for aid to

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buy her mother out of slavery. Let our citizens respond to her appeal. * * *James Poindexter ,
"of Zion Baptist Church."

This Mr. Poindexter, it seems, was not then in active service, as pastor of the church, though still residing there.

The Journal and Messenger of March 16, contained the following editorial notice: "Louisa Picquet, formerly a slave, but with a complexion as white almost as that of any person, is now visiting villages in this State [Ohio], soliciting aid to purchase her mother, who is a slave in Texas. She is a member of Zion Baptist Church, in this city, is well recommended; and is, no doubt, worthy of public sympathy and benevolence."

Mrs. P. accordingly procured a subscription-book, pasted the above notices into the front of it, and started out in Cincinnati first. A well-known "Friend," in Cincinnati, recommended her as follows, on a blank leaf:

"The bearer of this, Louisa Picquet, I believe to be a very worthy, pious woman. Would recommend her to the sympathy of the friends of humanity, in aiding her to redeem her mother from slavery." Levi Coffin .
"Cincinnati, 15th 12th mo., 1860."

Similar recommendations were inserted by Joseph Emery .


    CHAPTER XIV.
  --  LETTER FROM THE OWNER OF ELIZABETH.   Table of Contents     CHAPTER XVI.
  --  SOLICITING HELP ABROAD TO BUY A MOTHER.