“My eye soon caught her precious face, but, gracious heavens! That glance of agony may God spare me from ever again enduring! My wife, under the influence of her feelings, jumped aside; I seized hold of her hand while my mind felt unutterable things, and my tongue was only able to say, we shall meet in heaven!

Henry “Box” Brown knew it could lead to a lashing, but it would be worth every drop of blood.

There was no price to be put on the final moments he would ultimately ever spend with his wife, Nancy, and their children, who were sold on the auction block while he worked. 

“My agony was now complete, she with whom I had travelled (sic) the journey of life in chains, for the space of twelve years, and the dear little pledges God had given us I could see plainly must now be separated from me for ever, and I must continue, desolate and alone, to drag my chains through the world,” recounts Brown in his autobiography, the “Narrative of the Life of Henry Box Brown.” 

The year was 1848. And in a final act of resistance, a final act of love, Brown did the only thing he could do: he walked side-by-side with his wife, holding her hand as she moved closer to her fate on a North Carolina plantation. 

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