Charles T. Torrey (Bordewich, 2006)

Fergus M. Bordewich, Bound for Canaan: The Epic Story of the Underground Railroad, America's First Civil Rights Movement (New York: Amistad, 2006), 301.
For the first months of 1844, the Bryonic [Charles T.] Torrey worked alone, personally collecting fugitives from as far away as Winchester, in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, and making plans – grandiose ones in light of what happened – to mount rescue expeditions in distant North Carolina and Louisiana. There was a certain compulsive quality to his behavior, as if each success bred a need for another, still greater risk. Not alone among evangelical abolitionists, he was also hooked on the frisson of imagined crucifixion. “Did you ever hear of a Torrey that suffered martyrdom?” he once asked his father. “I hope among our good old Puritan ancestors there were some who had the martyr spirit.” That June, Torrey was identified by a Washington slave dealer, who named him as the man who had carried off slaves from Winchester. Once in custody, he was also convicted for enticing three other slaves away from a Baltimore tavern owner, and sentenced to six years’ hard labor. It was a death sentence. Torrey did not have the constitution of the hardy seaman Jonathan Walker, and prison proved an agony for him. He was racked by “bilious fever,” and his moods swung wildly between depression and Christian exaltation. Then the tuberculosis from which he had suffered early in life crept inexorably and fatally through his lungs. On the night of May 7 he suffered a severe hemorrhage, and on the eighth he died. With [Thomas] Smallwood, he had helped an estimated four hundred slaves to freedom.
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