UTC
The Christian Slave
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Boston: Phillips, Sampson, 1855

Air: "Ole Kintuck in de arternoon."

ACT I.

SCENE I— -- UNCLE TOM'S CABIN.

A Table with cups, saucers, &c.; AUNT CHLOE cooking at the fire; UNCLE TOM and GEO. SHELBY at a table, with slate between them; MOSE and PETE playing with baby in the corner.

Geo. Shelby.

   Ha! ha! ha! Uncle Tom! Why, how funny! — brought up the tail of your g wrong side out — makes a q, don't you see?


Uncle Tom.

  La sakes! now, does it?


Geo. S.

  Why yes. Look here now [writing rapidly], that's g, and that's q—that's g — that's q. See now?


Aunt Chloe.

  How easy white folks al'ays does things! The way he can write now! and read, too! and then to come out here evenings and read his lessons to us—it's mighty interestin'!


Geo. Sh.

  But, Aunt Chloe, I'm getting mighty hungry. Is n't that cake in the skillet almost done?


Aunt C.

  Mose done, Mas'r George; brownin' beautiful—a real lovely brown. Ah! let me alone for dat. Missis let Sally try to make some cake, t' other day, jes to larn her, she said. "O, go way, Missis," said I; "it really hurts my feelin's, now, to see good vittles spilt dat ar way! Cake ris all to one side—no shape at all; no more than my shoe; go way!" Here you, Mose and Pete, get out de way, you niggers! Get away, Polly, honey,—mammy'll give her baby some fin, by-and-by. Now, Mas'r George, you jest take off dem books, and set down now with my old man, and I'll take up de sausages, and have de first griddle-full of cakes on your plates in less dan no time.


Geo. S.

  They wanted me to come to supper in the house, but I knew what was what too well for that, Aunt Chloe.


Aunt C.

  So you did—so you did, honey; you know'd your old aunty'd keep the best for you. O, let you alone for dat—go way!


Geo. S.

  Now for the cake.


6


Aunt C.

  La bless you! Mas'r George, you would n't be for cuttin' it wid dat ar great heavy knife? Smash all down—spile all de pretty rise of it. Here, I've got a thin old knife I keeps sharp a purpose. Dar now, see!—comes apart light as a feather. Now eat away; you won't get anything to beat dat ar.


Geo. S.

  Tom Lincoln says that their Jinny is a better cook than you.


Aunt C.

  Dem Lincons an't much count no way; I mean, set along side our folks. They's 'spectable folks enough in a plain way; but as to gettin' up anything in style, they don't begin to have a notion on't. Set Mas'r Lincon, now, alongside Mas'r Shelby. Good Lor! and Missis Lincon—can she kinder sweep it into a room like my missis,—so kinder splendid, yer know? O, go way ! don't tell me nothin' of dem Lincons!


Geo. S.

  Well, though, I've heard you say that Jinny way a pretty fair cook.


Aunt C.

  So I did. I may say dat. Good, plain, common cookin', Jinny'll do; make a good pone o' bread—bile her taters far,—her corn cakes is n't extra, not extra, now, Jinny's corn cakes is n't; but then they's far. But, Lor, come to de higher branches, and what can she do? Why, she makes pies—sartin she does; but what kinder crust? Can she make your real flecky paste, as melts in your mouth and lies all up like a puff? Now, I went over thar when Miss Mary was gwine to be married, and Jinny she jest showed me de weddin' pies. Jinny and I is good friends, ye know. I never said nothin'; but go 'long, Mas'r George! Why, I shouldn't sleep a wink for a week if I had a batch of pies like dem ar. Why, dey wan't no 'count 't all.


Geo. S.

  I suppose Jinny thought they were ever so nice.


Aunt C.

  Thought so!—did n't she! Thar she was, showing 'em as innocent—ye see, it's jest here, Jinny don't know. Lor, the family an't nothing! She can't be spected to know! 'Ta'nt no fault o' hern. Ah, Mas'r George, you doesn't know half yer privileges in yer family and bringin' up! [Sighs and rolls her eyes.]


Geo. S.

  I'm sure, Aunt Chloe, I understand all my pie-and-pudding privileges. Ask Tom Lincoln if I don't crow over him every time I meet him.


Aunt C. [Sitting back in her chair.]

  Ya! ha! ha! And so ye telled Tom, did ye? Ha! ha! ha! O Lor—what young mas'r will be up to! Ha! ha! ha! Ye crowed over Tom! Ho! ho! ho! Lor, Mas'r George, if ye would n't make a hornbug laugh.


Geo. S.

  Yes, I says to him, "Tom, you ought to see some of Aunt Chloe's pies; they're the right sort," says I.


Aunt C.

  Pity, now, Tom could n't. Ye oughter jest ax him here to dinner some o' these times, Mas'r George; it would look quite pretty of ye. Ye know, Mas'r George, ye oughtenter fur to feel 'bove nobody on 'count yer privileges, 'cause all our privileges is gi'n to us; we ought al'ays to 'member dat ar.


Geo. S.

  Well, I mean to ask Tom here, some day next week; and you do your prettiest, Aunt Chloe, and we'll make him stare. Won't we make him eat so he won't get over it for a fortnight?


Aunt C.

  Yes, yes—sartin; you'll see. Lor! to think of some of our dinners! Yer mind dat ar great chicken pie I made when we guv


7

de dinner to General Knox? I and Missis, we come pretty near quarrellin' about dat ar crust. What does get into ladies sometimes, I don't know; but sometimes, when a body has de heaviest kind o' 'sponsibility on 'em, as ye may say, and is all kinder "seris" and taken up, dey takes dat ar time to be hangin' round and kinder interferin'! Now, Missis, she wanted me to do dis way, and she wanted me to do dat way; and finally I got kinder sarcy, and, says I, "Now, Missis, do jist look at dem beautiful white hands o' yourn, with long fingers, and all a sparklin' with rings, like my white lilies when de dew's on 'em; and look at my great black stumpin' hands. Now, don't ye think dat de Lord must have meant me to make de pie-crust, and you to stay in de parlor?" Dar! I was jist so sarcy, Mas'r George.


Geo. S.

  And what did mother say?


Aunt C.

  Say?—why, she kinder larfed in her eyes—dem great handsome eyes o' hern; and says she, "Well, Aunt Chloe, I think you are about in the right on 't," says she; and she went off in de parlor. She oughter cracked me over de head for bein' so sarcy; but dar's whar 't is—I can't do nothin' with ladies in de kitchen!


Geo. S.

  Well, you made out well with that dinner—I remember everybody said so.


Aunt C.

  Didn't I? And wan't I behind de dinin'-room door dat bery day? and didn't I see de Gineral pass his plate three times for some more dat bery pie? and, says he, "You must have an uncommon cook, Mrs. Shelby." Lor! I was jest fit fur ter split. And de Gineral, he knows what cookin' is. Bery nice man, de Gineral! He comes of one of de bery fustest families in Ole Virginny! He knows what's what, now, as well as I do—de Gineral. Ye see, there's pints in all pies, Mas'r George; but tan't everybody knows what they is, or fur to be. But the Gineral, he knows; I knew by his 'marks he made. Yes, he knows what de pints is!


Geo. S. [Throwing pieces of cake to the children.]

  Here you Mose, Pete—you want some, don't you? Come, Aunt Chloe, bake them some cakes.


Aunt C. [Feeding baby, while Mose and Pete roll on the floor and pull baby's toes.]

  O, go long, will ye? [Kicking them.] Can't ye be decent when white folks comes to see ye? Stop dat ar, now, will ye? Better mind yerselves, or I'll take ye down a button-hole lower, when Mas'r George is gone!


Uncle Tom.

  La, now! they are so full of tickle all the while, they can't behave theirselves.


Aunt C.

  Get along wid ye! ye'll all stick together. Go long to de spring and wash yerselves. Mas'r George! did ye ever see such aggravatin' young uns? Wall, now, I hopes you's done. Here, now, you Mose and Pet e—ye got to go to bed, mighty sudden, I tell ye. Cause we's gwine to have meetin' here.


Mose and Pete.

  O, mother, we don't wanter. We wants to sit up to meetin'—meetin's is so curis. We likes 'em.


Geo. S. [Pushing the trundle-bed.]

  La! Aunt Chloe, let 'em sit up.


Aunt C.

  Well, mebbe 't will do 'em some good. What we's to to for cheers, now I declare I don't know.


8


Mose.

  Old Uncle Peter sung both de legs out of dat oldest cheer, last week.


Aunt C.

  You go long! I'll boun' you pulled 'em out; some o' your shines.


Mose.

  Well, it'll stand, if it only keeps jam up agin de wall!


Pete.

  Den Uncle Peter mus' n't sit in it, 'cause he al'ays hitches when he gets a singing. He hitched pretty nigh cross de room t'udder night.


Mose.

  Good Lor! get him in it den; and then he'd begin, "Come, saints and sinners, hear me tell," and then down he'll go. [Mimicking.]


Aunt C.

  Come, now, be decent, can't ye? An't yer shamed yerself? Well, ole man, you'll have to tote in them ar bar'ls yerself.


Mose. [Aside to Pete.]

  Mother's bar'ls is like dat ar widder's Mas'r George was reading 'bout in de good book—dey never fails.


Pete. [Aside to Mose.]

  I'm sure one on 'em caved in last week, and let 'em all down in de middle of de singin'; dat ar was failin', warn't it?


Aunt C.

  Mas'r George is such a beautiful reader, now, I know he'll stay to read for us; 'pears like 't will be so much more interestin'.


SCENE II.—A Boudoir. Evening. -- MR. and -- MRS. SHELBY.


Mrs. Shelby. [Arranging her ringlets at the mirror.]

  By the by, Arthur, who was that low-bred fellow that you lugged in to our dinner-table to-day?


Mr. Shelby. [Lounging on an ottoman, with newspaper.]

  Haley is his name.


Mrs. S.

  Haley! Who is he, and what may be his business here, pray?


Mr. S.

  Well, he's a man that I transacted some business with last time I was at Natchez.


Mrs. S.

  And he presumed on it to make himself quite at home, and call and dine here, eh?


Mr. S.

  Why, I invited him; I had some accounts with him.


Mrs. S.

  Is he a negro-trader?


Mr. S.

  Why, my dear, what put that into your head?


Mrs. S.

  Nothing—only Eliza came in here, after dinner, in a great worry, crying and taking on, and said you were talking with a trader, and that she heard him make an offer for her boy—the ridiculous little goose!


Mr. S.

  She did, eh? It will have to come out. As well now as ever. [Aside.]


Mrs. S.

  I told Eliza that she was a little fool for her pains, and that you never had anything to do with that sort of persons. Of course, I knew you never meant to sell any of our people—least of all, to such a fellow.


Mr. S.

  Well, Emily, so I have always felt and said; but the fact is, my business lies so that I cannot get on without. I shall have to sell some of my hands.


9


Mrs. S.

  To that creature? Impossible! Mr. Shelby, you cannot be serious.


Mr. S.

  I am sorry to say that I am. I've agreed to sell Tom.


Mrs. S.

  What! our Tom? that good, faithful creature! been your faithful servant from a boy! O, Mr. Shelby! and you have promised him his freedom, too—you and I have spoken to him a hundred times of it. Well, I can believe anything now; I can believe now that you could sell little Harry, poor Eliza's only child!


Mr. S.

  Well, since you must know all, it is so. I have agreed to sell Tom and Harry both; and I don't know why I am to be rated as if I were a monster for doing what every one does every day.


Mrs. S.

  But why, of all others, chose these? Why sell them of all on the place, if you must sell at all?


Mr. S.

  Because they will bring the highest sum of any—that's why. I could chose another, if you say so. The fellow made me a high bid on Eliza, if that would suit you any better.


Mrs. S.

  The wretch!


Mr. S.

  Well, I did n't listen to it a moment, out of regard to your feelings, I would n't; so give me some credit.


Mrs. S.

  My dear, forgive me. I have been hasty. I was surprised, and entirely unprepared for this; but surely you will allow me to intercede for these poor creatures. Tom is a noble-hearted, faithful fellow, if he is black. I do believe, Mr. Shelby, that if he were put to it, he would lay down his life for you.


Mr. S.

  I know it—I dare say; but what's the use of all this? I can't help myself.


Mrs. S.

  Why not make a pecuniary sacrifice? I'm willing to bear my part of the inconvenience. O, Mr. Shelby, I have tried—tried most faithfully, as a Christian woman should—to do my duty to these poor, simple, dependent creatures. I have cared for them, instructed them, watched over them, and know all their little cares and joys, for years; and how can I ever hold up my head again among them, if, for the sake of a little paltry gain, we sell such a faithful, excellent, confiding creature as poor Tom? I have taught them the duties of the family, of parent and child, and husband and wife; and how can I bear to have this open acknowledgment that we care for no tie, no duty, no relation? I have talked with Eliza about her boy—her duty to him as a Christian mother, to watch over him, pray for him, and bring him up in a Christian way; I have told her that one soul is worth more than all the money in the world; and how will she believe me when she sees us turn round and sell her child? sell him, perhaps, to certain ruin of body and soul!


Mr. S.

  I'm sorry you feel so about it, Emily—indeed, I am; and I respect your feelings, too, though I don't pretend to share them to their full extent; but I tell you now, solemnly, it's of no use—I can't help myself. I didn't mean to tell you this Emily; but, in plain words, there is no choice between selling these two and selling everything. Either they must go, or all must. Haley has come into possession of a mortgage, which, if I don't clear off with him directly, will take everything before it. I've raked, and scraped, and borrowed, and all but begged, and the price of these two was needed to make up the balance, and I had to give them up. Haley fancied the child; he


10

agreed to settle the matter that way, and no other. I was in his power, and had to do it. If you feel so to have them sold, would it be any better to have all sold?


Mrs. S.

  This is God's curse on slavery!—a bitter, bitter, most accursed thing!—a curse to the master, a curse to the slave! I was a fool to think I could make anything good out of such a deadly evil. It is a sin to hold a slave under laws like ours. I always felt it was—I always thought so when I was a girl—I thought so still more after I joined the church; but I thought I could gild it over. I thought, by kindness, and care, and instruction, I could make the condition of mine better than freedom—fool that I was!


Mr. S.

  Why, wife, you are getting to be an Abolitionist, quite.


Mrs. S.

  Abolitionist! If they knew all I know about slavery they might talk. We don't need them to tell us. You know I never thought slavery was right—never felt willing to own slaves.


Mr. S.

  Well, therein you differ from many wise and pious men. You remember Mr. B's sermon the other Sunday?


Mrs. S.

  I don't want to hear such sermons. I never wish to hear Mr. B. in our church again. Ministers can't help the evil, perhaps,—can't cure it, any more than we can,—but defend it!—it always went against my common sense. And I think you did n't think much of the sermon, either.


Mr. S.

  Well, I must say these ministers sometimes carry matters further than we poor sinners would exactly dare to do. We men of the world must wink pretty hard at various things, and get used to a deal that is n't the exact thing. But we don't quite fancy, when women and ministers come out broad and square, and go beyond us in matters of either modesty or morals, that's a fact. But now, my dear, I trust you see the necessity of the thing, and you see that I have done the very best that circumstances would allow.


Mrs. S. [Agitatedly.]

  O yes, yes! I have n't any jewelry of any amount; but would not this watch do something? It was an expensive one when it was bought. If I could only at least save Eliza's child, I would sacrifice anything I have.


Mr. S.

  I'm sorry, very sorry, Emily,—I'm sorry this takes hold of you so; but it will do no good. The fact is, Emily, the thing's done; the bills of sale are already signed, and in Haley's hands; and you must be thankful it is no worse. That man has had it in his power to ruin us all, and now he is fairly off. If you knew the man as I do you'd think that we had had a narrow escape.


Mrs. S.

  Is he so hard, then?


Mr. S.

  Why, not a cruel man, exactly, but a man of leather, a man alive to nothing but trade and profit; cool, and unhesitating, and unrelenting as death and the grave. He'd sell his own mother at a good percentage, not wishing the old woman any harm either.


Mrs. S.

  And this wretch owns that good, faithful Tom and Eliza's child?


Mr. S.

  Well, my dear, the fact is, that this goes rather hard with me; it's a thing I hate to think of. Haley wants to drive matters, and take possession to-morrow. I'm going to get out my horse bright and early, and be off. I can't see Tom, that's a fact; and you had


11

better arrange a drive somewhere, and carry Eliza off. Let the thing be done when she is out of sight.


Mrs. S.

  No, no; I'll be in no sense accomplice or help in this cruel business. I'll go and see poor old Tom—God help him!—in his distress! They shall see, at any rate, that their mistress can feel for and with them. As to Eliza, I dare not think about it. The Lord forgive us! What have we done that this cruel necessity should come on us?


SCENE III.— -- UNCLE TOM'S CABIN. Midnight.

UNCLE TOM and AUNT CHLOEknocking without.

Aunt Chloe.

  Good Lor! What's that? My sakes alive, if it an't Lizy! Get on yore clothes, ole man, quick! There's old Bruno, too, a-pawin' round—what on airth! I'm gwine to open the door.

[Enter ELIZA.]

Eliza.

  I'm running away, Uncle Tom and Aunt Chloe—carrying off my child. Master's sold him.


Uncle Tom and Aunt C.

  Sole him?


Eliza.

  Yes, sold him! I crept into the closet by mistress' door to-night, and I heard master tell missis that he had sold my Harry and you, Uncle Tom, both to a trader, and that he was going off this morning on his horse, and that the man was to take possession to-day.


Aunt C.

  The good Lord hab pity on us! O, it don't seem like's if it was true! What has he done that mas'r should sell him?


Eliza.

  He hasn't done anything—it is n't for that. Master don't want to sell, and missis —she's always good—I heard her plead and beg for us; but he told her 't was no use—that he was in this man's debt, and that this man had got the power over him, and that if he did n't pay him off clear, it would end in his having to sell the place and all the people, and move off. Yes, I heard him say there was no choice between selling these two and selling all, the man was driving him so hard. Master said he was sorry; but, O missis! you ought to have heard her talk! If she an't a Christian and an angel, there never was one. I'm a wicked girl to leave her so; but then I can't help it. She said herself one soul was worth more than the world; and this boy has a soul, and if I let him be carried off, who knows what'll become of it? It must be right; but if it an't right, the Lord forgive me, for I can't help doing it!


Aunt C.

  Well, ole man, why don't you go too? Will you wait to be toted down river, whar dey kill niggers wid hard work and starving? I'd a heap rather fur to die than go dar, any day! Dere's time for ye; be off with Lizy—you've got a pass to come and go any time. Come, bustle up, and I'll get your things together.


Uncle T.

  No, no; I an't going. Let Eliza go; it's her right. I wouldn't be the one to say no. 'T an't in natur for her to stay; but you heard what she said! If I must be sold, or all the people on the place, and everything go to rack, why, let me be sold. I s'pose I


12

can b'ar it as well as any on 'em. [Sobbing.] Mas'r always found me on the spot—he always will. I never have broke trust, nor used my pass noways contrary to my word, and I never will. It's better for me alone to go, than to break up the place and sell all. Mas'r an't to blame, Chloe; and he'll take care of you and the poor— [Covers his face with his hands.]


Eliza.

  And now, I saw my husband only this afternoon, and I little knew then what was to come. They have pushed him to the very last standing place, and he told me to-day he was going to run away. Do try, if you can, to get word to him. Tell him how I went, and why I went; and tell him I'm going to try and find Canada. You must give my love to him, and tell him, if I never see him again [turning away, and speaking agitatedly], tell him to be as good as he can, and try and meet me in the kingdom of heaven. Call Bruno in there. Shut the door on him, poor beast! He must n't go with me!

[Exit.]

SCENE IV.—Lawn before the house.

BLACK SAM solus.

Sam.

  It's an ill wind dat blow nowhar—dat ar a fact. Yes, it's an ill wind blows nowhar. Now, dar, Tom's down—wal, course der's room for some nigger to be up; and why not dis nigger?—dat's de idee. Tom, a ridin' round de country—boots blacked—pass in his pocket—all grand as Cuffee; but who he? Now, why should n't Sam?—dat's what I want to know.

Enter ANDY, shouting.

Andy.

  Halloo, Sam! O Sam! Mas'r wants you to cotch Bill and Jerry.


Sam.

  High! what's afoot now, young un?


Andy.

  Why, you don't know, I s'pose, that Lizy's cut stick, and clared out, with her young un?


Sam.

  You teach your granny! knowed it a heap sight sooner than you did. Dis nigger ain't so green, now.


Andy.

  Well, anyhow, mas'r wants Bill and Jerry geared right up; and you and I's to go with Mas'r Haley, to look arter her.


Sam.

  Good, now! dat's de time o' day! It's Sam dat's called for in dese yer times. He's de nigger. See if I don't cotch her, now; mas'r'll see what Sam can do!


Andy.

  Ah! but Sam, you'd better think twice; for missis don't want her cotched, and she'll be in yer wool.


Sam.

  High! how you know dat ar?


Andy.

  Heard her say so, my own self, dis blessed mornin', when I bring in mas'r's shaving water. She sent me to see why Lizy did n't come to dress her; and when I telled her she was off, she jest riz up, and ses she, "The Lord be praised!" And mas'r he seemed rael mad, and ses he, "Wife, you talk like a fool!" But, Lor! she'll bring him to! I knows well enough how that'll be—it's allers best to stand missis' side the fence, now I tell yer.


Sam. [Scratching his head.]

  Der an't no sayin'—never—'bout no kind o' thing in dis yer world. Now, sartin I'd a said that missis would a scoured the varsal world after Lizy.


Andy.

  So she would; but can't ye see through a ladder, ye black nigger? Missis don't want dis yer Mas'r Haley to get Lizy's boy, dat's de go.


Sam.

  High!


Andy.

  And I'll tell ye what, Sam, ye'd better be makin' tracks for dem hosses—mighty sudden too; mas'r's in a grand hurry.


Sam.

  Andy, chile, you go cotch 'em—you's a mighty good boy, Andy—and bring 'em long quick.


Mrs. Shelby. [Calling from the balcony.]

  Sam! Sam!


Sam.

  Andy! don't ye hear, ye nigger? be off quick, and bring the critturs up, and I'll go and 'scuse us to missis—dat ar takes dis chile to do.


Mrs. S. [From the balcony.]

   Sam! what have you been loitering so for?


Sam.

  Lord bless you, missis! hosses won't be cotched all in a minnit; they'd done clared out way down to the south pasture, and the Lord knows whar!


Mrs. S.

  Sam, how often must I tell you not to say "Lord bless you," and "the Lord knows," and such things? It's wicked.


Sam.

  O, Lord bless my soul! I done forgot, missis! I won't say nothing of de sort no more.


Mrs. S.

  Why, Sam, you just have said it again.


Sam.

  Did I? O Lord! I mean—I did n't go fur to say dar ar.


Mrs. S.

  You must be careful, Sam.


Sam.

  Jest let me get my breath, missis, and I'll start fair. I'll be wery careful.


Mrs. S.

  Well, Sam, you are to go with Mr. Haley, to show him the road, and help him. Be careful of the horses, Sam; you know Jerry was a little lame last week; don't ride them too fast.


Sam.

  Let dis chile alone for dat! Lord knows! High! did n't say dat! Yes, missis, I'll look out fur de hosses.


SCENE V.—The Lawn before the house.

Enter SAM and ANDY with the horses.

Andy.

  Here dey is! [Fastens them to a post.]


Sam.

  Here, now, Andy—see dis? [Holding up a beech-nut.]


Andy.

  Laws! what?


Sam.

  Look here! [Slips it under the saddle.] Soh!


Andy.

  Why Sam!


Sam.

  An't I a hoss!—ku! ku!— [Strokes the horse.]—Skeery are ye? I'll fix ye—Ku! [Poking Andy in the side.] Now, Andy, chile, I's gwine to be 'structin' ye in yer duties. Ye see, by'm-bye, when dat ar grand gentleman comes to be gettin' up, I would n't be't all surprised if this yer critter should gib a fling. Ye know, Andy, critters will do sich things. Ku! ku!


Andy.

  High ah!


Sam.

  Yes, you see, Andy, missis wants to make time,—dat ar's clar to der most or'nary 'bserver. I jis make a little for her. Now,


14

ye see, get all dese yer hosses loose, caperin' permiscus round dis yer lot and down to de wood dar, and I spec mas'r won't be off in a hurry.


Andy.

  Ku! ku! ku!


Sam.

  Yer see, Andy, if any such thing should happen as that Mas'r Haley's horse should begin to act contrary, and cut up, you and I jist let's go of our 'n to help him; and we'll help him—O yes!

Enter HALEY, booted and spurred, with large riding-whip.

Haley.

  Well, boys, look alive now; we must lose no time.


Sam.

  Not a bit of him, mas'r.

[HALEY mounts, and is instantly thrown. The horses run away. SAM and ANDY chasing, waving their hats and shouting, followed by all the negro children. HALEY retires to the parlor.]

-- SCENE VI.—The Stable-yard.

Enter SAM and ANDY, leading the horses, covered with foam.

Sam. [Panting.]

  Did yer see him, Andy?—did yer see him? O, Lor, if it war n't as good as a meetin', now, to see him a dancin' and kickin' and swarin' at us. Did n't I hear him? Swar away, ole fellow, ses I; will yer have yer hoss now, or wait till you cotch him? ses I. Lor, Andy, I think I can see him now.


Sam and Andy.

  Ha ha ha! he he he! hi hi hi! ho ho ho!


Sam.

  Yer oughter seen how mad he looked, when I brought the hoss up. Lor, he'd a killed me, if he durs' to; and there I was a standin' as innercent and as humble.


Andy.

  Lor, I seed you; an't you an old hoss, Sam?


Sam.

  Rather 'spects I am. Did yer see missis upstars at the winder? I seed her laughin'.


Andy.

  I'm sure, I was racin' so, I did n't see nothing.


Sam.

  Well, yer see, I's 'quired what yer may call a habit o' bobservation, Andy. It's a very 'portant habit, Andy, and I 'commend yer to be cultivatin' it, now yer young. Hist up that hind foot, Andy. Yer see, Andy, it's bobservation makes all de difference in niggers. Did n't I see which way the wind blew dis yer mornin'? Didn't I see what Missis wanted, though she never let on? Dat ar's bobservation, Andy. I 'spects it's what you may call a faculty. Faculties is different in different peoples, but cultivation of 'em goes a great way.


Andy.

  I guess if I had n't helped yer bobservation dis mornin', yer would n't have see yet way so smart.


Sam.

  Andy, you's a promisin' child, der an't no manner o' doubt. I thinks lots of yer, Andy; and I don't feel no ways ashamed to take idees from you. We oughtenter overlook nobody, Andy, 'cause the smartest on us gets tripped up sometimes. And so, Andy, let's go up to the house now. I'll be boun' missis 'll give us an uncommon good bite dis yer time.



15

SCENE VII.—The Road.

Enter HALEY, SAM and ANDY, mounted.

Haley.

  Your master, I s'pose, don't keep no dogs?


Sam.

  Heaps on 'em; that's Bruno— he's a roarer! and, besides that, 'bout every nigger of us keeps a pup of some natur' or uther.


Haley.

  Ho! But your master don't keep no dogs—I pretty much know he don't—for trackin' out niggers?


Sam.

  Our dogs all smells round considerable sharp. I 'spect the's the kind, though they ha' n't never had no practice. The's far dogs, though, at most anything, if you'd get 'em started. Here, Bruno! [Whistling.]


Haley.

  Bruno be ———-!


Sam.

  Lor, Mas'r Haley, don't see no use, cursin on 'em, nuther!


Haley. [Smothering his anger.]

  Take the straight road to the river. I know the way of all of 'em—they make tracks for the underground.


Sam.

  Sartin, dat's de idee. Mas'r Haley hits de things right in de middle. Now, der's two roads to de river—de dirt road and der pike—which mas'r mean to take?


Andy.

  Dat am fact.


Sam.

  'Cause, I'd rather be 'clined to 'magine that Lizy'd take de dirt road, bein' it's the least travelled.


Andy.

  I tink so too.


Haley. [Contemplatively.]

  If yet war n't both on yer such cussed liars, now!


Sam.

  Course, mas'r can do as he'd ruther; go de straight road, if mas'r think best—it's all one to us. Now, when I study 'pon it, I think de straight road de best, decidedly.


Haley.

  She would naturally go a lonesome way


Sam.

  Dar an't no sayin'; gals is pecular. They never does nothin' ye thinks they will; mose gen'lly the contrar. Gals is nat'lly made contrary; and so, if you thinks they've gone one road, it is sartin you'd better go t'other, and then you'll be sure to find 'em. Now, my private 'pinion is, Lizy took der dirt road; so I think we'd better take de straight one.


Haley.

  On the whole, I shall take the dirt road. How far is it?


Sam.

  A little piece ahead [winking to Andy]; but I've studded on de matter, and I'm quite clar we ought not to go dat ar way. I nebber been over it no way. It's despit lonesome, and we might lose our way—whar we'd come to, de Lord only knows.


Haley.

  Nevertheless, I shall go that way.


Sam.

  Now I think on't, I think I hearn 'em tell dat ar road was all fenced up and down by der creek, and that; an't it, Andy.


Andy.

  Dunno 'zackly. So I hearn tell.


Sam.

  Its despit rough and bad for Jerry's lame foot, mas'r.


Haley.

  Now, I jest give yer warning, I know yer; yer won't get me to turn off this yer road, with all yer fussin'—so you shet up!


Sam.

  Mas'r will go his own way!

[Exeunt.]

16

SCENE VIII.—The Parlor.

Enter SAM and ANDY below, horseback. MRS. SHELBY from the window.

Mrs. Shelby.

  Is that you, Sam? Where are they?


Sam.

  Mas'r Haley's a-restin' at the tavern; he's drefful fatigued, missis.


Mrs. S.

  And Eliza, Sam?


Sam.

  Wal, she's clar 'cross Jordan. As a body may say, in the land o' Canaan.


Mrs. S.

  Why Sam, what do you mean?


Sam.

  Wal, missis, de Lord he persarves his own. Lizy's done gone over the river into 'Hio, as 'markably as if the Lord took her over in a charrit of fire and two hosses.

Enter MR. SHELBY.

Mr. S.

  Come up here, Sam, and tell your mistress what she wants. Come, come, Emily, you are cold and all in a shiver; you allow yourself to feel too much.


Mrs. S.

  Feel too much! Am I not a woman—a mother? Are we not both responsible to God for this poor girl? My God, lay not this sin to our charge!


Mr. S.

  What sin, Emily? You see yourself that we have only done what we were obliged to.


Mrs. S.

  There's an awful feeling of guilt about it, though. I can't reason it away.

Enter SAM from below.

Mr. S.

  Now, Sam, tell us distinctly how the matter was. Where is Eliza, if you know?


Sam.

  Wal, mas'r, I saw her, with my own eyes, a crossin' on the floatin' ice. She crossed most 'markably; it wasn't no less nor a miracle; and I saw a man help her up the 'Hio side, and then she was lost in the dusk.


Mr. S.

  Sam, I think this rather apocryphal—this miracle. Crossing on floating ice is n't so easily done.


Sam.

  Easy! couldn't nobody a done it, without de Lord. Why, now, 't was jist dis yer way. Mas'r Haley, and me, and Andy, we comes up to de little tavern by the river, and I rides a leetle ahead—(I's so zealous to be a cotchin' Lizy, that I could n't hold in, no way)—and when I comes by the tavern winder, sure enough there she was, right in plain sight, and dey diggin' on behind. Wal, I loses off my hat, and sings out nuff to raise the dead. Course Lizy she hars, and she dodges back, when Mas'r Haley he goes past the door; and then, I tell ye, she clared out de side door; she went down de river bank; Mas'r Haley he seed her, and yelled out, and him, and me, and Andy, we took arter. Down she came to the river, and thar was the current running ten feet wide by the shore, and over t' other side ice a sawin'


17

and a jiggling up and down, kinder as 't were a great island. We come right behind her, and I thought my soul he'd got her sure enough—when she gin sich a screech as I never hearn, and thar she was, clar over t' other side of the current, on the ice, a nd then on she went, a screechin' and a jumpin'—the ice went crack! c'wallop! chunk! and she a boundin' like a buck! Lord, the spring that ar gal's got in her an't common, I'm o' 'pinion.


Mrs. S.

  God be praised, she is n't dead! But where is the poor child now?


Sam.

  De Lord will pervide. As I've been a sayin', dis yer 's a providence and no mistake, as missis has allers been a instructin' on us. Thar's allers instruments ris up to do de Lord's will. Now, if 't hadn't been for me to-day, she'd a been took a dozen times. Warn't it I started off de hosses, dis yer morning', and kept 'em chasin' till nigh dinner time? And didn't I car Mas'r Haley night five miles out of de road, dis evening? or else he'd a come up with Lizy as easy as a dog arter a coon. These yer's all providences.


Mr. S.

  They are the kind of providences that you 'll have to be pretty sparing of, Master Sam. I allow no such practices with gentlemen on my place.


Sam.

  Mas'r quite right—quite; it was ugly on me, there's no disputin' that ar; and of course mas'r and missis wouldn't encourage no such works. I'm sensible of dat ar; but a poor nigger like me 's 'mazin' tempted to act ugly sometimes, when fellers will cut up such shines as dat ar Mas'r Haley; he an't no gen'l'man no way; anybody's been raised as I've been can't help a seein' dat ar.


Mrs. S.

  Well, Sam, as you appear to have a proper sense of your errors, you may go now and tell Aunt Chloe she may get you some of that cold ham that was left of dinner to-day. You and Andy must be hungry.


Sam.

  Missis is a heap too good for us.


SCENE IX.— -- SAM and -- ANDY at Table. -- AUNT CHLOE and all the negroes surrounding in admiration.


Sam. [Flourishing a greasy bone.]

  Yer see, fellow-countrymen, yer see, now, what dis yer chile's up ter, for fendin' yer al,—yes, all on yer. For him as tries to get one o' our people is as good as tryin' to get all; yer see the principle's de same—dat ar's clar. And any one o' these yer drivers that comes smelling round arter any our people, why, he's got me in his way; I'm the feller he's got to set in with—I'm the feller for yer all to come to, bredren—I'll stand up for yer rights—I'll fend 'em to the last breath!


Andy.

  Why, but Sam, yer telled me, only this mornin' that you'd help this yer mas'r fur to cotch Lizy; seems to me yer talk don't hang together, mun.


Sam.

  I tell you now, Andy, don't yer be a talkin' 'bout what yer don't know nothin' on; boys like you, Andy, means well, but they can't be 'spected to collusitate the great principles of action. Dat ar was conscience , Andy; when I thought of gwine arter Lizy, I railly spected mas'r was sot dat way. When I found Missis was sot the contrar, dat ar was conscience more yet—cause fellers allers gets


18

more by stickin' to missis' side—so yer see I 's persistent either way, and sticks up to conscience, and holds on to principles. Yes, principles, what's principles good for, if we isn't persistent, I wanter know? Thar, Andy, you may have dat ar bone—tan't picked quite clean. Dis yer matter 'bout persistence, feller-niggers, dis yer 'sistency 's a thing what an't seed into very clar, by most anybody. Now, yer see, when a feller stands up for a thing one day, and right de contrar de next, folks ses (and nat'rally enough dey ses), why he an't persistent—hand me dat ar bit o' corn-cake, Andy. But let's look inter it. I hope the gen'lmen and der fair sex will scuse my usin' an or'nary sort o' 'parison. Here! I'm a trying to get top o' der hay. Wal, I puts up my larder dis yer side; 'tan't no go; den, 'cause I don't try dere no more, but puts my larder right de contrar side, an't I persistent? I'm persistent in wanting to get up which ary side my larder is; don't you see, all on yer?


Aunt C.

  It's the only thing ye ever was persistent in, Lord knows. [Aside.]


Sam.

  Yes, indeed! Yes, my feller-citizens and ladies of de other sex in general, I has principles, I has—I 'm proud fur to 'oon 'em—they 's perquisite to dese yer times, and ter all times. I has principles, and I sticks to 'em like forty—jest anything that I thinks is principle, I goes in to 't; I would n't mind if dey burnt me 'live, I'd walk right up to de stake, I would, and say, Here I comes to shed my last blood fur my principles, fur my country, fur de gen'l interests of society.


Aunt C.

  Well, one o' yer principles will have to be to get to bed some time to-night, and not to be a keepin' everybody up till mornin'; now everyone of you young uns that don't want to be cracked had better be scarse, might sudden.


Sam.

  Niggers! all on yer, I give yer my blessin': go to bed now, and be good boys.


SCENE X.— -- UNCLE TOM'S Cabin.

UNCLE TOM with Testament open. CHILDREN asleep in trundle-bed.

Uncle Tom.

  It 's the last time!


Aunt C. [Weeping.]

  S'pose we must be resigned; but, O Lord! how ken I? If I know'd anything whar you 's goin', or how they 'd sarve you! Missis says she 'll try and 'deem ye in a year or two; but, Lor! nobody never comes up that goes down that! They kills 'em! I 've hearn 'em tell how dey works 'em up on dem ar plantations.


Uncle T.

  There 'll be the same God there, Chloe, that there is here.


Aunt C.

  Well, s'pose dere will; but de Lord lets drefful things happen, sometimes. I don't seem to get no comfort day way.


Uncle T.

  I'm in the Lord's hands; nothin' can go no furder than he lets it; and thar's one thing I can thank him for. It's me that's sold and going down, and not you nur the chil'en. Here you're safe; what comes will come only on me; and the Lord, he'll help me—I know he will. [A sob.] Let 's think on our marcies!


Aunt C.

  Marcies! don't see no marcy in 't! 'tan't right! tan't


19

right it should be so! Mas'r never ought ter left it so that ye could be took for his debts. Ye've arnt him all he gets for ye, twice over. He owed ye yer freedom, and ought ter gin 't to yer years ago. Mebbe he can't help himself now, but I feel it's wrong. Nothing can't beat that ar out o' me. Sich a faithful crittur as ye 've been, and allers sot his business 'fore yer own every way, and reckoned on him more than yer own wife and chil'en! Them as sells heart's love and heart's blood, to get out thar scrapes, de Lord 'll be up to 'em!


Uncle T.

  Chloe! now, if ye love me, ye won't talk so, when mebbe jest the last time we'll ever have together! And I'll tell ye, Chloe, it goes agin me to hear one word agin mas'r. Wan't he put in my arms a baby? It 's natur I should think a heap of him. And he could n't be 'spected to think so much of poor Tom. Mas'rs is used to havin' all these yer things done for 'em, and nat'lly they don't think so much on 't. They can't be 'spected to, no way. Set him 'longside of other mas'rs—who 's had the treatment and the livin' I have had? And he never would have let this yer come on me, if he could have seed it aforehand. I know he would n't.


Aunt C.

  Wal, any way, thar's wrong about it somewhar, I can't jest make out whar 't is, but thar's wrong somewhar, I'm clar o' that.


Uncle T.

  Yer ought ter look up to the Lord above—he's above all—thar don't a sparrow fall without him.


Aunt C.

  It don't seem to comfort me, but I 'spect it ort fur ter. But dar's no use talkin'; I 'll jes get up de corn-cake, and get ye one good breakfast, 'cause nobody knows when you 'll get another.

[AUNT CHLOE gets the breakfast, and the children dress themselves.]

Mose.

  Lor, Pete, ha'n't we got a buster of a breakfast!


Aunt C. [Boxing his ears.]

  Thar now! crowing over the last breakfast yer poor daddy 's gwine to have to home.


Uncle T.

  O, Chloe!


Aunt C.

  Wal, I can't help it! I 's so tossed about it, it makes me act ugly. Thar! now I 's done, I hope—now do eat something. This yer 's my nicest chicken. Thar, boys, ye shall have some, poor critturs! Yer mammy's been cross to yer. [The boys eat.] Now, I must put up yer clothes. Jest like as not, he 'll take 'em all away. I know thar ways—mean as dirt, they is! Wal, now, yer flannels for rhumatis is in this corner; so be careful, 'cause t here won't nobody make ye no more. Then here 's yer old shirts, and these yer is new ones. I toed off these yer stockings last night, and put de ball in 'em to mend with. But Lor! who 'll ever mend for ye? [Sobbing.] To think on 't! no crittur to do for ye, sick or well! I don't railly think I ought ter be good now! [Baby crows.] Ay, crow away, poor crittur! ye'll have to come to it, too! ye'll live to see yer husband sold, or mebbe be sold yerself; and these yer boys, they 's to be sold, I s'pose, too, jest like as not, when dey gets good for somethin'; an't no use in niggers havin' nothin'!


Pete.

  That's missis a-comin' in!


Aunt C.

  She can't do no good; what 's she coming for?


20

Enter MRS. SHELBY.

Mrs. S.

  Tom, I come to ——

[Bursts into tears, and sits down in a chair, sobbing.]

Aunt C.

  Lor, now, missis, don't—don't. [All weep.]


Mrs. S. to Uncle T.

  My good fellow, I can't give you anything to do you any good. If I give you money, it will only be taken from you. But I tell you solemnly, and before God, that I will keep trace of you, and bring you back as soon as I can command the money; and, till then, trust in God!


Mose and Pete.

  Mas'r Haley 's coming!

Enter HALEY, kicking the door open.

Haley.

  Come, ye nigger, yer ready? Servant, ma'm. [To MRS. SHELBY.]

UNCLE T. and AUNT C. go out, followed by the rest. A crowd of negroes around

First Slave [weeping], to Aunt C.

  Why, Chloe, you bar it better 'n we do!


Aunt C.

  I 'se done my tears! I does n't feel to cry 'fore day ar old limb, nohow!


Haley.

  Get in!

[TOM gets in, and HALEY fastens on shackles. Groans.]

Mrs. S.

  Mr. Haley, I assure you that precaution is entirely unnecessary.


Haley.

  Don't know, ma'am; I 've lost one five hundred dollars from this ere place, and I can't afford to run no more risks.


Aunt C.

  What else could she 'spect on him?


Uncle T.

  I 'm sorry that Mas'r George happened to be away.

Enter GEORGE, springing into wagon and clasping UNCLE T. round the neck.

George.

  I declare it 's real mean! I don't care what they say, any of 'em! It 's a nasty, mean shame! If I was a man they should n't do it—they should not, so!


Uncle T.

  O, Mas'r George! this does me good! I could n't bar to go off without seein' ye! It does me real good, ye can't tell!

[GEORGE spies the fetters.]

George.

  What a shame! I 'll knock that old fellow down—I will!


Uncle T.

  No, you won't, Mas'r George; and you must not talk so loud. It won't help me any to anger him.


George.

  Well, I won't then, for your sake; but only to think of it—is n't it a shame? They never sent for me, nor sent me any word, and if it hadn't been for Tom Lincoln, I should n't have heard it. I tell you, I blew 'em up well, all of 'em, at home!


Uncle T.

  That ar was n't right, I 'm feared, Mas'r George.


George.

  Can't help it! I say it 's a shame! Look here, Uncle Tom, I've brought you my dollar!


21


Uncle T.

  O! I could n't think o' takin' on 'it, Mas'r George, no ways in the world!


George.

  But you shall take it! Look here; I told Aunt Chloe I'd do it, and she advised me just to make a hole in it, and put a string through, so you could hang it round your neck, and keep it out of sight; else this mean scamp would take it away. I tell ye, Tom, I want to blow him up! it would do me good!


Uncle T.

  No, don't, Mas'r George, for it won't do me any good.


George.

  Well, I won't, for your sake; but there, now, button your coat tight over it, and keep it, and remember, every time you see it, that I'll come down after you, and bring you back. Aunt Chloe and I have been talking about it. I told her not to fear, I 'll see to it, and I 'll tease father's life out, if he don't do it.


Uncle T.

  O, Mas'r George, ye must n't talk so 'bout yer father!


George.

  Lor, Uncle Tom, I don't mean anything bad.


Uncle T.

  And now, Mas'r George, ye must be a good boy; 'member how many hearts is sot on ye. Al'ays keep close to yer mother. Don't be gettin' into any of them foolish ways boys has, of getting too big to mind their mothers. Tell ye what, Mas'r George, the Lord gives good many things twice over, but he don't give ye a mother but once. Ye 'll never see sich another woman, Mas'r George, if ye live to be a hundred years old. So, now, you hold on to her, and grow up, and be a comfort to her, thar's my own good boy—you will now, won't ye?


George.

  Yes, I will, Uncle Tom!


Uncle T.

  And be careful of yer speaking, Mas'r George. Young boys, when they comes to your age, is willful, sometimes—it 's natur' they should be. But real gentlemen, such as I hopes you 'll be, never lets fall no words that is n't 'spectful to thar parents. Ye an't 'fended, Mas'r George!


George.

  No, indeed, Uncle Tom; you always did give me good advice.


Uncle T.

  I 's older, ye knows, and I sees all that 's bound up in you. O, Mas'r George, you has everything—l'arnin', privileges, readin', writin',—and you 'll grow up to be a great, learned, good man, and all the people on the place, and your mother and father 'll be so proud on ye! Be a good mas'r, like yer father; and be a Christian, like yer mother. 'Member yer Creator in the days o' yer youth, Mas'r George.


George.

  I'll be real good, Uncle Tom, I tell you. I'm going to be a first-rater; and don't you be discouraged. I 'll have you back to the place, yet. As I told Aunt Chloe this morning, I 'll build your house all over, and you shall have a room for a parlor, with a carpet on it, when I 'm a man. O, you 'll have good times yet!

[UNCLE T. is handcuffed and driven off.]