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    Runaway Slave Who Begged His Master to Take Him Back February 12, 1845 letter commenting on a runaway slave who begged his master to take him back, Vicksburg, Mississippi. Choice extremely fine. Autograph letter signed, Elisha Vail, who writes to his father, Micah Vail, in Rutland, Vermont, commenting on the activities of Niggers in New Orleans and Mississippi. Two page integral sheet, 9.75" x 7.75". Lightly toned pages, normal folds, minor staining. Fascinating content in this letter, as Vail -- who was tending bar in Vicksburg after visiting New Orleans in Louisiana -- comments with disgust: "Father I would like to have you be hear som sundy and see Niggers turn ut to meeting ... som of the Niggers hear you see them with their bead Clouth and silver heddid Cains & Strutting thru the streats." Vail goes on to describe, in broken English and misspelled wording a "shourt story a bout Arunny Nigger ound by a Dockter he ronaway and went to Canaday..." Apparently the runaway grew homesick after about a year, and wrote to his former master that he wanted to return. The master told him that he would have nothing to do with him, so the ex-slave went to see him in person--and he was again rebuffed, even after crying. The slaveowner told him that before he ran away he would have not taken "to Thousand dollars" for him and all he had to do was "brush his Clouth and harness his hors ...the Nigger awlwas wor better Clouth than his Master... so the Nigger had to leav..." It is not clear where Vail heard this story, but it is quite interesting and extremely rare contemporary commentary.

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    Auction Dates
    June, 2005
    22nd-23rd Wednesday-Thursday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
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