Chapter 1 excerpt
Penny Haywood is awaken from a deep sleep to hear the footsteps of slave catchers. She could see the early morning sunlight peaking its way through the rotting planks of the old plantation barn. A warm loving, but shaking palm, is covering her mouth. ‘Duh slave catchus be here,” whispers her mother. They both laid quietly on the cold floor. An eternal hour lingers before the slave catchers are gone.
Penny Haywood tells this story of her early slave life to her young son Garfield Haywood. This story has a profound impact upon Garfield’s life. Born into slavery Bennett and Penny Haywood, the parents of G.T. Haywood, had an unwanted front row seat to one of the most tumultuous times in human history. However, a far more gripping revelation is that the Haywood’s were not only escapees along the underground railroad, but they became active railroad conductors leading others to freedom; foretelling a greater work to come.
Shackled not only with chains, but confined with humiliation, and depression. “Living without the camp” became commonplace for the Haywood’s but it never became a place of complacency