Here's a passage by Solomon Northup who wrote Twelve Years a Slave in 1853. He had been born a free man living in upstate New York until captured by slavers and sent south to be sold into bondage. He had been a farmer and musician: "Alas, had it not been for my beloved violin, I scarcely know how I could have endured the long years of bondage...it was my companion – the friend of my bosom – trumpeting loudly when I was joyful, and uttering its soft melodious consolations when I was sad. Often, at midnight when sleep had fled affrighted from the cabin and my soul was disturbed and troubled with the contemplation of my fate, it would sing me a song of peace." It was difficult to copy the text so filled were my eyes with tears.