Why is this page text-only?
Filing Cabinet - Underground Railroad

Leonard Harrod

        I was born and bred in Georgetown, D. C., where I had a wife and two children. About six o'clock one morning, I was taken suddenly from my wife; she knew no more where I had gone than the hen knows where the hawk carries her chicken. Fifteen hundred miles I wore iron on my wrist, chained in a gang from Georgetown to Port Gibson. There I was sold and put to receive and pack cotton, etc., for six years. Then I was sold to Nashville, Tenn., one year; then to New Orleans fifteen years; then I took up my bed and walked for Canada. I have been in Canada nearly two years. I was poor--as low down as a man could be who is not underground. It was in winter,--my wife was in a delicate situation,--and we had nothing for bedclothes at night but what we had worn through the day. We suffered all the winter for things we left on the way, which were never sent us. My wife is now under the doctor's care in consequence.

        I have hired a place to work on, and have bought two acres of land.

        A man can get more information in Canada about slavery, than he can in the South. There I would have told you to ask master, because I would have been afraid to trust a white man: I would have been afraid that you would tell my master. Many a time my master has told me things to try me. Among others, he said he thought of moving up to Cincinnati, and asked me if I did not want to go. I would tell him, "No! I do n't want to go to none of your free countries!" Then he 'd laugh,--but I did want to come--surely I did. A colored man tells the truth here,--there he is afraid to.

A North-Side View of Slavery, the Refugee:  or the Narratives of Fugitive Slaves in Canada, Related by Themselves with an Account of the History and Condition of the Colored Population of Upper Canada, Benjamin Drew (Boston: John P. Jewett & Co., 1856)

Browse more Underground Railroad Resources »