Fairer Than Morning by Rosslyn Elliott
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
"Fairer Than Morning" is first in series The Saddler's Legacy by Rosslyn Elliott.
This series is a work of fiction inspired by the Hanby Family from Westerville, Oh.
In the 19th century Ohio Ann is a young woman, daughter of a saddler and sometime preacher. She lost her Mother at a young age and has been surrogate Mother to two small sisters. She takes her job seriously and as she becomes of a age to marry she is in quandry. Should she leave and start a life with Levi whom has been courting her or stay with her sisters that she loves so much. She cannot imagine being anywhere else.
She and Levi have much in common, He is a well to do young man and will make a wonderful husband and father for any children they should have. All of this before she meets Will Hamby....
Ann and her father take a trip to Pittsburgh where he is to work on a saddle. They come into contact with an apprentice saddler while there and realize that he is indentured slave.
Will came from a Quaker family and when they became ill they had he and his brother go be indentured slaves so they would be away from the illness and to have a life. There are good masters and then the others...as Will learned in life.
When his parents died and he knew not what his life would hold for him, he made the decision to let him self be indentured to Master Good who was a saddler so he could apprentice and learn a trade, 5 years of his life would be gone away but he would be able to make a living when it was over, little did he know that this was not best decison.
Master Good was a cruel man and he treated his apprentice badly over the next years. Will had to sleep in a barn and weather was extremly cold,he was fed a gruel that was only fit for swine. He was forced to do many things in the next years and became very thin...
Master Good wanted Will to work with Ann's father when he came and learn how his work was perfected, even to destroy the work in the end.
Will and Mr Miller became friends as he worked with him while he was there to work on the saddle, Miller soon knew Will's story and wanted to help him. Even Ann felt sadness for this young man and knew he needed to get away from this cruel master before the man killed him with the beatings that Will was given.
The last straw came when Will's master killed a neighbor's pig and blamed it on Will. There were court proceedings and Will was found guilty and given longer time for his indentured services to this master. After the worst beating he had ever endured and he became well again- he knew he must run away to save himself.
He traveled to the home of Mr Miller and became his apprentice while there, bounty hunters soon found his trail though and life was difficult to say the least.
Mr Miller had been helping a couple of black slaves whom had runaway also and he enlisted Will's help in getting them far away, this was a part of the underground railroad that helped many blacks escape cruel masters.
Will had an experience with God on this trip and finally found he could live his life with this one and true master guiding him, somehow things would get better. He knew in his heart that this was true.
After the black slaves were delivered far away he and Mr Miller had talked and they planned to go back to Master Good and buy Will from him with much monies, knowing that God would be with him....
You must read this wonderful story and learn what happens to Will Hanby and his master.
It was Fairer Than Morning when Will and Ann finally meet again...
can there be anything between an apprentice-former indentured slave and the daughter of a well to do Saddler and part-time preacher..
Read and enjoy Rosslyn Elliott's story.
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