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LIFE AND TIMES OF FREDERICK DOUGLASS 151

raved, and swore he would "get hold of me," but wisely for him, and happily
for me, his wrath employed only those harmless, impalpable missiles which
roll from a limber tongue. In my desperation I had fully made up my mind
to measure strength with him, in case he should attempt to execute his threat.
I am glad there was no occasion for this, for resistance to him could not have
ended so happily for me as it did in the case of Covey. Master Hugh was not
a man to be safely resisted by a slave; and I freely own that in my conduct
toward him, in this instance, there was more folly than wisdom. He closed
his reproofs by telling me that hereafter I need give myself no uneasiness
about getting work; he "would himself see to getting work for me, and
enough of it at that." This threat, I confess, had some terror in it, and on
thinking the matter over during the Sunday, I resolved not only to save him
the trouble of getting me work, but that on the third day of September I
would attempt to make my escape. His refusal to allow me to hire my time
therefore hastened the period of my flight. I had three weeks in which to
prepare for my journey.

Once resolved, I felt a certain degree of repose, and on Monday morn-
ing, instead of waiting for Master Hugh to seek employment for me, I was
up by break of day, and off to the ship-yard of Mr. Butler, on the City Block,
near the drawbridge. I was a favorite with Mr. Butler, and, young as I was, I
had served as his foreman, on the float-stage, at calking. Of course I easily
obtained work, and at the end of the week, which, by the way, was exceed-
ingly fine, I brought Master Hugh nine dollars. The effect of this mark of
returning good sense on my part, was excellent. He was very much pleased;
he took the money, commended me, and told me I might have done the same
thing the week before. It is a blessed thing that the tyrant may not always
know the thoughts and purposes of his victim. Master Hugh little knew my
plans. The going to camp-meeting without asking his permission, the inso-
lent answers to his reproaches, the sulky deportment of the week after being
deprived of the privilege of hiring my time, had awakened the suspicion that
I might be cherishing disloyal purposes. My object, therefore, in working
steadily was to remove suspicion; and in this I succeeded admirably. He
probably thought I was never better satisfied with my condition than at the
very time I was planning my escape. The second week passed, and I again
earned him my full week's wages nine dollars; and so well pleased was he
that he gave me twenty-five cents! and bade me "make good use of it." I told
him I would do so, for one of the uses to which I intended to put it was to
pay my fare on the "underground railroad."

Things without went on as usual; but I was passing through the same

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