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Biography of a Slave; Being the Experiences of Rev. Charles Thompson, a Preacher of the United Brethren Church, While a Slave in the South
			
 36           BIOGRAPHY OF A SLAVE.
self from observation in a shady place. I opened
the book-a spelling-book it was.  Hallo! here's
a dog and a cat, and here's a sheep too, and
right here in the corner is a yoke--a regular
ox-yoke. Well, now, this is nice. So I got my
first idea of what a book contained by the pict-
ures in a spelling-book. The print in the book
meant something, I was sure, and my mind was
employed until recess in endeavors to make out
what the print and pictures were intended for.
The scholars came out at recess, and my mis-
tresses gave me such instructions as they were
able, which gave me a start ahead that enabled
me to memorize the first six letters of the al-
phabet by the time school dismissed for noon.
  I began to be deeply interested in "studying
lessons," and was soon, after hard study, com-
plete master of the alphabet. I could repeat it
forwards and backwards, and could instantly
tell the name of any letter pointed out to me.
My mistresses seemed to take great pleasure in
teaching me, and I was very anxious to learn.
I soon found that I could understand in a great
measure the instructions  the teacher gave  to
the different scholars, by which I profited.  I
sat in the back part of the house, behind  the
scholars, with my young mistress' old book in
my hand, and held it so that nobody could see it,




			
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Biography of a Slave; Being the Experiences of Rev. Charles Thompson, a Preacher of the United Brethren Church, While a Slave in the South


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