LIFE AND TIMES OF FREDERICK DOUGLASS
others. At this second table I took a seat far apart from the few gentlemen scattered along its side, but directly opposite a well dressed, finely-featured man, of the fairest complexion, high forehead, golden hair and light beard. His whole appearance told me he was somebody. I had been seated but a minute or two, when the steward came to me, and roughly ordered me away. I paid no attention to him, but proceeded to take my supper, determined not to leave, unless compelled to do so by superior force, and being young and strong I was not entirely unwilling to risk the consequences of such a contest. A few moments passed, when on each side of my chair, there appeared a stalwart of my own race. I glanced at the gentleman opposite. His brow was knit, his color changed from white to scarlet, and his eyes were full of fire. I saw the lightning flash, but I could not tell where it would strike. Before my sable brethren could execute their captain's order, and just as they were about to lay violent hands upon me, a voice from that man of golden hair and fiery eyes resounded like a clap of summer thunder. "Let the gentleman alone! I am not ashamed to take my tea with Mr. Douglass." His was a voice to be obeyed, and my right to my seat and my supper was no more disputed.
I bowed my acknowledgments to the gentleman, and thanked him for his chivalrous interference; and as modestly as I could, asked him his name. "I am Edward Marshall of Kentucky, now of California," he said. "Sir, I am very glad to know you. I have just been reading your speech in Congress," I said. Supper over, we passed several hours in conversation with each other, during which he told me of his political career in California, of his election to Congress, and that he was a Democrat, but had no prejudice against color. He was then just coming from Kentucky where he had been in part to see his black mammy, for, said he, "I nursed at the breasts of a colored mother."
I asked him if he knew my old friend John A. Collins in California. "Oh, yes," he replied, "he is a smart fellow; he ran against me for Congress. I charged him with being an abolitionist, but he denied it, so I sent off and got the evidence of his having been general agent of the Massachusetts Anti-Slaver Society, and that settled him."
During the passage, Mr. Marshall invited me into the bar-room to take a drink. I excused myself from drinking, but went down with him. There were a number of thirsty looking individuals standing around, to whom Mr. Marshall said, "Come, boys, take a drink." When the drinking was over, he threw down upon the counter a twenty dollar gold piece, at which the barkeeper made large eyes, and said he could not change it. "Well, keep it," said the gallant Marshall, "it will all be gone before morning." After this, we naturally fell apart, and he was monopolized by other company; but I shall
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