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


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.]


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

Uncle Tom and Aunt C.

  Sole him?


  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?


  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


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.]


  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!