Once, finding us all three busily writing, Violet stood for some moments silently watching the mysterious motion of our pens, and then, in a tone of deepest sadness, said, 福彩3d开机号100期查 In some ways, our annual meeting is a bigger version of the kind of show we have on Saturdaymornings. We have entertainers, like Reba McEntire, the popular country singer, and we have guestspeakers. In other ways, it's a lot like the meetings of many companiesonly louder. We makepresentations to the shareholders, which focus on our accomplishments over the past year and on ourgoals and plans for the coming one. But what I think really sets our meeting apart is the degree to whichwe involve our associates, who, after all, are some of our most important shareholders. Chapter XII My friend Captain McT鈥斺€? with whom I stayed, had a house with a peaked, reed-thatched roof. Round the verandah where we slept at night hung festoons of jasmine and bougainvillea. Bamboos, ph?nix, and curtains of creepers at the end of the lawn made a wall of verdure, fresh and cool; and through this were wafted the perfumes shed on the air鈥攖he scent of roses and verbena, of violet[Pg 290] or of rosemary, according to the side whence the wind blew, mingling with that of the amaryllis and honeysuckle in bloom close at hand. And in this quiet garden, far from the bazaar where the darboukhas were twanging, birds sang all night, and the fireflies danced in mazes from flower to flower. 4th. 鈥淭he liberty usually allowed the slave,鈥攈is holidays and amusements, and the way in which they usually spend their evenings and holidays.鈥濃€擳hey are prohibited from going off the estate without first obtaining leave; though they often transgress, and with impunity, except in flagrant cases. Those who have wives on other plantations visit them on certain specified nights, and have an allowance of time for going and returning, proportioned to the distance. My negroes are permitted, and, indeed, encouraged, to raise as many ducks and chickens as they can; to cultivate vegetables for their own use, and a patch of corn for sale; to exercise their trades, when they possess one, which many do; to catch muskrats and other animals for the fur or the flesh; to raise bees, and, in fine, to earn an honest penny in any way which chance or their own ingenuity may offer. The modes specified are, however, those most commonly resorted to, and enable provident servants to make from five to thirty dollars apiece. The corn is of a different sort from that which I cultivate, and is all bought by me. A great many fowls are raised; I have this year known ten dollars worth sold by one man at one time. One of the chief sources of profit is the fur of the muskrat; for the purpose of catching which the marshes on the estate have been parcelled out and appropriated from time immemorial, and are held by a tenure little short of fee-simple. The negroes are indebted to Nat Turner and Tappan for a curtailment of some of their privileges. As a sincere friend to the blacks, I have much regretted the reckless interference of these persons, on account of the restrictions it has become, or been thought, necessary to impose. Since the exploit of the former hero, they have been forbidden to preach, except to their fellow-slaves, the property of the same owner; to have public funerals, unless a white person officiates; or to be taught to read and write. Their funerals formerly gave them great satisfaction, and it was customary here to furnish the relations of the deceased with bacon, spirit, flour, sugar and butter, with which a grand entertainment, in their way, was got up. We were once much amused by a hearty fellow requesting his mistress to let him have his funeral during his lifetime, when it would do him some good. The waggish request was granted; and I venture to say there never was a 10funeral the subject of which enjoyed it so much. When permitted, some of our negroes preached with great fluency. I was present, a few years since, when an Episcopal minister addressed the people, by appointment. On the conclusion of an excellent sermon, a negro preacher rose and thanked the gentleman kindly for his discourse, but frankly told him the congregation 鈥渄id not understand his lingo.鈥?He then proceeded himself, with great vehemence and volubility, coining words where they had not been made to his hand, or rather his tongue, and impressing his hearers, doubtless, with a decided opinion of his superiority over his white co-laborer in the field of grace. My brother and I, who own contiguous estates, have lately erected a chapel on the line between them, and have employed an acceptable minister of the Baptist persuasion, to which the negroes almost exclusively belong, to afford them religious instruction. Except as a preparatory step to emancipation, I consider it exceedingly impolitic, even as regards the slaves themselves, to permit them to read and write: 鈥淲here ignorance is bliss, 鈥榯is folly to be wise.鈥?And it is certainly impolitic as regards their masters, on the principle that 鈥渒nowledge is power.鈥?My servants have not as long holidays as those of most other persons. I allow three days at Christmas, and a day at each of three other periods, besides a little time to work their patches; or, if very busy, I sometimes prefer to work them myself. Most of the ancient pastimes have been lost in this neighborhood, and religion, mock or real, has succeeded them. The banjo, their national instrument, is known but in name, or in a few of the tunes which have survived. Some of the younger negroes sing and dance, but the evenings and holidays are usually occupied in working, in visiting, and in praying and singing hymns. The primitive customs and sports are, I believe, better preserved further south, where slaves were brought from Africa long after they ceased to come here. With great labor, I have found friends who are willing to aid me in the purchase of my child, to save us from a cruel separation. You, as a father, can judge of my feelings when I was told that you had decreed her banishment to distant as well as to hopeless bondage!