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Captain Canot
or, Twenty Years of an African Slaver

written by "Mayer, Brantz, 1809-1879"
... the petition without faltering. It was, indeed, a sad parody on prayer to hear its blessed accents fall perfectly from such lips on a bet; but when it was won, the slaver insisted on receiving the slave which was the stake, and immediately bestowed him in charity on a captain, who had fallen into the clutches of a British cruiser! Such is a rude sketch of the great man merchant of Africa, the Rothschild of slavery, whose bills on England, France, or the United States, were as good as gold in Sierra Leone and Monrovia! [Pg 330] CHAPTER LII. The day after our arrival within the realm of this great spider,—who, throned in the centre of his mesh, was able to catch almost every fly that flew athwart the web,—I landed at one of the minor factories, and sold a thousand quarter-kegs of powder to Don José Ramon. But, next day, when I proceeded in my capacity of interpreter to the establishment of Don Pedro, I found his Castilian plumage ruffled, and, though we were received with formal politeness, he declined to purchase, because we had failed to address him in advance of any other factor on the river. The folks at Sierra Leone dwelt so tenderly on the generous side of Blanco’s character, that I was still not without hope that I might induce him to purchase a good deal of our rum and tobacco, which would be drugs on our hands unless he consented to relieve us. I did not think it altogether wrong, therefore, to concoct a little ruse whereby I hoped to touch the pocket through the breast of the Don. In fact, I addressed him a note, in which I truly related my recent mishaps, adventures, and imprisonments; but I concluded the narrative with a hope that he would succor one so destitute and unhappy, by allowing him to win an honest commission allowed by the American captain on any sales I could effect. The bait took; a prompt, laconic answer [Pg 331] returned; I was bidden to come ashore with...

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