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    CHAPTER III.   Table of Contents     CHAPTER V.

Brown, Josephine
Biography of an American Bondman



"What! mothers from their children riven?
What! God's own image bought and sold?
Americans to market driven,
And bartered, as the brutes, for gold?"

Speculation and mismanagement had so far reduced the Doctor's finances, that he found himself compelled to sell some of his slaves to repair his affairs, and Elizabeth, William's mother, was among the first that were sold. William had three brothers, who, together with his mother, were taken to the St. Louis negro market, and sold to the highest bidder. The boys were purchased by a slave-trader, and sent off to the lower country; but the mother was more fortunate, and became the slave of Isaac Mansfield, a gentleman residing in the city of St. Louis. The last tidings that William had of his brothers was, that they had been brought by a planter, and sent to his farm on the Yazoo River. If still living, they are lingering out a miserable existence on a cotton, sugar, or rice plantation, in a part of the country where the life of the slave has no parallel in deeds of atrocity. Nothing can be worse than slavery in Louisiana and Mississippi, on the banks of the noblest river in the world. A ride down that beautiful stream on one of the western floating palaces, causes one's heart to ache at seeing humanity so degraded. The rich plantations, waving with green

and golden crops of cane, are interspersed here and there by a cotton plantation, with intervals of untrodden forests hanging over the banks, showing Nature in her most luxuriant state. Nothing can exceed the grandeur and beauty of the land thus cursed by the foul system of negro slavery. Truly may it be said, that this outrageous and unnatural institution has monopolized the best soil and finest climate in the New World.

    CHAPTER III.   Table of Contents     CHAPTER V.