IT IS a common story; there were more than three million slaves; there are perhaps ten million heirs born of the slaves since 1865. What reason can there be for writing a story which is so common? One reason is that some want to know the story, and have asked for it. These several requests have been prompted, perhaps, by no expectation of anything wonderful in the story, but by the fact that it is common and can therefore stand as the representative of the class. This last reason is the one that emboldens me to the task. The interests of a class may justify the examination and description of a typical specimen. I shall therefore regard myself as speaking to friends. I shall not aim to evaluate the thing I say, but I shall simply relate the incidents and leave the worth of them to the judgment of the audience. If I am frank, it is only to be true. Such a story could have no self-glory and little expectation of applause.