Anthony Burns

Albert Burns

Charles Suttle

Thomas Wentworth Higginson

Police Deputies

Scene 1

[Set is quiet, it is dark. Burns is struggling trying to unlock something.]

Burns: [to himself] Stupid things wonít come off. I need to get out of here. A man like me, a reverend, a good man that can read and write and teach should not be out some boat being treated like garbage.

[Burns continues to struggle and finally gets free. He goes to the edge of the ship and jumps into the cold water]

Scene 2

[Burns enters the downtown area of Boston]

Burns: Finally I am free! It is time to write back to my dear brother to tell him how to get to freedom. Nobody needs to be kept as a slave. There is so much more for everyone!

[Burns sits down at the house he is staying at and begins to write his brother Albert a letter]

Burns: Dearest Albert, I have finally made it to Boston. It is beautiful here. The people are much different. They are kind and caring. Although some are like those in the south, most arenít. I am sure you would love living here. Have you considering coming? It was much easier than I though. I jumped right off the boat that I was on. It was an easy swim to shore as we were already in the harbor. This would be a much better place for you. We could continue your schooling and you could even find a job working. The jobs here arenít like back home. You work side by side with whites and there isnít hate. It is time for me to go, please be sure that Suttle doesnít see this. Say hi to my friends. Love always, Anthony.

Scene 3

[Albert in his house in the South. Suttle comes in angry]

Suttle: Albert! Where are you? Are you in here?

Albert: Yes massa Iím right here. What is the matter?

Suttle: I have a letter here addressed to you from Anthony. Did you know he ran away? Why didnít you tell me?

[Suttle smacks Albert]

Albert: I am sorry sir. I never ment to cause any trouble. I promised my brother I wouldnít tell anyone. It wonít happen again.

Suttle: Damn right it wonít. Weíre going to Boston to get him back now! Get ready weíre leaving after supper on the ship.

[Albert packs his belongings and prepares to go to Boston]

Scene 4

[Suttle and Albert arrive in Boston and set out to get Burns. They first go to the police.]

Suttle: One of my slaves is in this here city. I want you to help me get him back. I canít do this on my own. Someone here stole him!

Police Deputy: We will certainly do all we can sir. Now youíll have to give us a good description of him to make things easier. Come into this room here and we can talk.

[The two men exit the stage.]

Scene 5

[Police barging into Burnsí home]

Police: Anthony Burns? Are you here? We need to speak with you immediately.

Burns: What can I help you with?

Police: You are under arrest for escaping away from Suttle in the south and coming to live here giving people the impression you were actually free, when really you are a fugitive.

Burns: Officer I did no such thing. I was told when you got to the North, no matter by what means you were free right away. I am a free slave, not a slave that is a fugitive. Please donít do this!

[Burns struggles with police as they take him away.]

Burns: Albert you told them didnít you! You have betrayed me!

[Police take Burns away]