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The day patrol continued for some weeks, and at sundown a night guard was
substituted. Nothing at all was proved against the colored people, bond or
free. The wrath of the slaveholders was somewhat appeased by the capture of
Nat Turner. The imprisoned were released. The slaves were sent to their
masters, and the free were permitted to return to their ravaged homes.
Visiting was strictly forbidden on the plantations. The slaves begged the
privilege of again meeting at their little church in the woods, with their
burying ground around it. It was built by the colored people, and they had
no higher happiness than to meet there and sing hymns together, and pour
out their hearts in spontaneous prayer. Their request was denied, and the
church was demolished. They were permitted to attend the white churches, a
certain portion of the galleries being appropriated to their use. There,
when every body else had partaken of the communion, and the benediction had
been pronounced, the minister said, "Come down, now, my colored friends."
They obeyed the summons, and partook of the bread and wine, in
commemoration of the meek and lowly Jesus, who said, "God is your Father,
and all ye are brethren."