Friday, March 7, 2008

Mary Prince

Mary Prince was one of a few slaves who publish a narrative of her life, part of which was on Turks Island located due north of Haiti in theCaribbean. This is just a short excerpt from this link.

History of Mary Prince a West Indian slave.

We slept in a long shed, divided into narrow slips, like the stalls used for cattle. Boards fixed upon stakes driven into the ground, without mat orcovering, were our only beds. On Sundays, after we had washed the saltbags, and done other work required of us, we went into the bush and cut the longsoft grass, of which we made trusses for our legs and feet to rest upon, for they were so full of the salt boils that we could get no rest lying uponthe bare boards. He would stand by and give orders for a slave to be cruelly whipped, and assist in the punishment, without moving a muscle of his face; walking about and taking snuff with the greatest composure. Nothing could touch his hard heart--neither sighs, nor tears, nor prayers, nor streaming blood; he was deaf to our cries, and careless of our sufferings.--Mr. D---- has often stripped me naked, hung me up by the wrists, and beat me with the cow-skin, with his own hand, till my body was raw with gashes. Yet there was nothing very remarkable in this; for it might serve as a sample of the common usage of the slaves on that horrible island.

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