Albany 9th June 1842
Mr. Charles Hicks
Hindsdaleville Bennington County
As the canal has closed I shall send my Southern friends along your road & patronize your house. We had a fine run of business during the season. C.G. We had 22 in two weeks 13 in the city at one time. Some of them noble looking fellows I assure you. One female so near white & so beautiful that her master had been offered at different times $1,200-1,500 & 2,000 for foulest purposes. A Baltimore officer—a man hunter was seen in our city making his observations but left without giving us any trouble. Several slaves were in our city from Baltimore at the time. Our Laws are now a terror to evil doers who live by robbery.
How goes the war with oppression in your blood stained “democratic" town? Can you not give currency to the Emancipator, for the winter at least, at 50 cents? A man is to spend the winter at Washington & report fully the doings of congress as its respects slavery & also the trial of the Amistad captives. Do aid in circulating this invaluable paper. May God bless you & yours. My love to yourself-family- ministers & all the friends of your fellow Servants.
I shall hereafter merely give your address on a card, as more convenient to carry. My hand you will know.
Nov 24, 1840
God is at work, I learn, in Pawlet. Pray.
This letter was written in 1840 to Charles Hicks. The letter reveals that some fugitives actually took the canal north to freedom. Because the canal was closed, he sent the fugitive another way. The letter also gives us a sense of the number of fugitives that were passing through his town at a given time. He also mentions slave catchers in the area. Obviously the writer is worried that he might be caught--at the end of the letter he mentions that he will “hereafter merely give your address on a card.”
- Why did Mr. Hoosick have to send his “southern friend” to Brother Hicks?
- How many fugitives were in Rensselaer, NY during the season?
- Why did he decided to only give his address on a card in the future?