American Slavery as It Is: Testimony of a Thousand Witnesses

By Theodore Dwight Weld | Go to book overview

TESTIMONY OF MRS. NANCY LOWRY, A NATIVE
OF KENTUCKY.

Mrs. Lowry, is a member of the non-conformist church in Osnaburg, Stark County, Ohio., she is a native of Kentucky. We have received from her the following testimony.

“I resided in the family of Reuben Long, the principal part of the time, from seven to twenty-two years of age. Mr. Long had 16 slaves, among whom were three who were treated with severity, although Mr. Long was thought to be a very humane master. These three, namely John, Ned, and James, had wives; John and Ned had theirs at some distance, but James had his with him. All three died a premature death, and it was generally believed by his neighbors, that extreme whipping was the cause. I believe so too. Ned died about the age of 25 and John 34 or 35. The cause of their flogging was commonly staying a little over the time, with their wives. Mr. Long would tie them up by the wrist, so high that their toes would just touch the ground, and then with a cow-hide lay the lash upon the naked back, until he was exhausted, when he would sit down and rest. As soon as he had rested sufficiently, he would ply the cow-hide again, thus he would continue until the whole back of the poor victim was lacerated into one uniform coat of blood. Yet he was a strict professor of the Christian religion, in the southern church. I frequently washed the wounds of John, with salt water, to prevent putrefaction. This was the usual course pursued after a severe flogging; their backs would be full of gashes, so deep that I could almost lay my finger in them. They were generally laid up after the flogging for several days. The last flogging Ned got, he was confined to the bed, which he never left till he was carried to his grave. During John’s confinement in his last sickness on one occasion while attending on him, he exclaimed, ‘Oh, Nancy, Miss Nancy, I haven’t much longer in this world,

-130-

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