(c) Pocumtuck Valley Memorial Association, Deerfield MA. All rights reserved. Contact us for information about using this image.
George Fuller, an artist from Deerfield, Massachusetts, took several trips through the South in the 1850s, documenting the sights and sounds with vivid letters and sketches. With the eye of an artist, Fuller describes in this letter the cruelty of an impending slave auction. He notes with irony how the slaves appear well dressed and fed but also that this condition serves their master's interest since it will make them more appealing to potential buyers. He surmises about the slaves' state of mind and notices the particular sadness and helplessness of one young woman. He then contrasts this disturbing scene against the beautiful and serene Southern landscape surrounding him.