Mar 28, 2019 - Sale 2503

Sale 2503 - Lot 24

Price Realized: $ 688
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 500 - $ 750
(SLAVERY AND ABOLITION.) Letter describing the resistance of a Maryland house slave. Autograph Letter Signed from "Lizzie G." to her "Cousin E." 4 pages, 8 1/4 x 6 3/4 inches, on one folding sheet, minor wear. Elkridge, MD, 19 January 1853

Additional Details

This letter was written at the Edgewood estate owned by Thomas Donaldson in what is now Howard County, MD, apparently by a visiting relative from the north. The author's unpleasant disposition is clear from the first page, where she mentions the horrors of occasionally being called upon to entertain the household's many children. She discusses the family's house slave on the last page: "We've got the toughest 'cretur' anybody ever saw in the shape of a little nigger whom Mrs. D is trying to make a waiter out of, but of the child lies and steals like a perfect fury. Says she's got but one master and she won't be calling Tom 'Master Tom.' I feel inclined to box her ears half the time. Mrs. D insists on her calling the children master and miss, and she doesn't like it. She's a little wretch. She'll get whipt out of it, I reckon, one of these days. . . . Would you like one to help you dress and to steal your money? That's all they are capable of, from all I've seen." The Donaldson family and this unfortunate servant would be separated by the 13th Amendment just twelve years later.