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164             UNCLE TOM'S CABIN; OR
under it her cloak; and then she sprung to the side of the boat, in hopes that, among the various hotel-waiters who thronged the wharf, she might see her husband. In this hope, she pressed forward to the front rails, and, stretch-ing far over them, strained her eyes intently on the mov­ing heads on the shore, and the crowd pressed in between her and the child.
" Now 's your time," said Haley, taking the sleeping child up, and handing him to the stranger. " Don't wake him up, and set him to crying, now; it would make a devil of a fuss with the gal." The man took the bundle care­fully, and was soon lost in the crowd that went up the wharf.
When the boat, creaking, and groaning, and puffing, had loosed from the wharf, and was beginning slowly to strain herself along, the woman returned to her old seat. The trader was sitting there, — the child was gone !
" Why, why, — where ? " she began, in bewildered sur­prise.
"Lucy," said the trader, "your child's gone ; you may as well know it first as last You see, I know'd you could n't take him down South ; and I got a chance to sell him to a first-rate family, that 11 raise him better than you can."
The trader had arrived at that stage of Christian and political perfection which has been recommended by some preachers and politicians of the North, lately, in which he had completely overcome every humane weakness and prejudice. His heart was exactly where yours, sir, and mine could be brought, with proper effort and cultivation. The wild look of anguish and utter despair that the woman cast on him might have disturbed one less practiced; but he was used to it. He had seen that same look hundreds of times. You can get used to such things, too, my friend; and it is the great object of recent efforts to make our whole Northern community used to them, for the glory of the Union. So the trader only regarded the mortal