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[Page 103]

about forty of them were engaged on one hatch and carried the coal up gangways in baskets, singing a peculiar drone kind of song all the time; and seemingly enjoying themselves immensely.

I don't think I will ever forget one night, after returning from leave at about 11.30, when we saw a number of them waiting further orders on a corner of the deck. I went over & spoke to them. The night was dark, & the niggers were blacker than ever with the coal dust, and as they spoke & smiled their eyes twinkled & their white teeth sparkled like glittering pearls, and they were as pleased as little children that any whiteman should take an interest in

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