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Filing Cabinet - Underground Railroad

Lydia Adams

        I am seventy or eighty years old. I was from Fairfax county, old Virginia. I was married and had three children when I left there for Wood county, where I lived twenty years: thence to Missouri, removing with my master's family. One by one they sent four of my children away from me, and sent them to the South: and four of my grandchildren all to the South but one. My oldest son, Daniel--then Sarah--all gone. "It's no use to cry about it," said one of the young women, "she's got to go." That's what she said when Esther went away. Esther's husband is here now, almost crazy about her: they took her and sold her away from him. They were all Methodist people--great Methodists--all belonged to the church. My master died--he left no testimony whether he was willing to go or not. . . . I have been in Canada about one year, and like it as far as I have seen.

        I've been wanting to be free ever since I was a little child. I said to them I did n't believe God ever meant me to be a slave, if my skin was black--at any rate not all my lifetime: why not have it as in old times, seven years' servants? Master would say, "No, you were made to wait on white people: what was niggers made for?--why, just to wait on us all."

        I am afraid the slaveholders will go to a bad place--I am really afraid they will. I do n't think any slaveholder can get to the kingdom.

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)

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