Uncle Tom's Cabin
The Property Is Carried Off
The February morning looked gray and drizzling through the window of Uncle Tom's
cabin. It looked on downcast faces, the images of mournful hearts. The little table stood
out before the fire, covered with an ironing-cloth; a coarse but clean shirt or two, fresh
from the iron, hung on the back of a chair by the fire, and Aunt Chloe had another spread
out before her on the table. Carefully she rubbed and ironed every fold and every hem,
with the most scrupulous exactness, every now and then raising her hand to her face to
wipe off the tears that were coursing down her cheeks.
Tom sat by, with his Testament open on his knee, and his head leaning upon his hand;--
but neither spoke. It was yet early, and the children lay all asleep together in their little
Tom, who had, to the full, the gentle, domestic heart, which woe for them! has been a
peculiar characteristic of his unhappy race, got up and walked silently to look at his
"It's the last time," he said.
Aunt Chloe did not answer, only rubbed away over and over on the coarse shirt, already
as smooth as hands could make it; and finally setting her iron suddenly down with a
despairing plunge, she sat down to the table, and "lifted up her voice and wept."
"S'pose we must be resigned; but oh Lord! how ken I? If I know'd anything whar you 's
goin', or how they'd sarve you! Missis says she'll try and 'deem ye, in a year or two; but
Lor! nobody never comes up that goes down thar! They kills 'em! I've hearn 'em tell how
dey works 'em up on dem ar plantations."
"There'll be the same God there, Chloe, that there is here."
"Well," said Aunt Chloe, "s'pose dere will; but de Lord lets drefful things happen,
sometimes. I don't seem to get no comfort dat way."
"I'm in the Lord's hands," said Tom; "nothin' can go no furder than he lets it;--and thar's
one thing I can thank him for. It's me that's sold and going down, and not you nur the
chil'en. Here you're safe;--what comes will come only on me; and the Lord, he'll help
me,--I know he will."
Ah, brave, manly heart,--smothering thine own sorrow, to comfort thy beloved ones!
Tom spoke with a thick utterance, and with a bitter choking in his throat,--but he spoke
brave and strong.
"Let's think on our marcies!" he added, tremulously, as if he was quite sure he needed to
think on them very hard indeed.