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Why had Sheriff Tate and the other men come to see Atticus at his house in To Kill a...

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lbianco | eNotes Newbie

Posted December 16, 2011 at 12:58 PM via web

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Why had Sheriff Tate and the other men come to see Atticus at his house in To Kill a Mockingbird? What were their feelings toward him?

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bullgatortail | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Distinguished Educator

Posted December 16, 2011 at 9:43 PM (Answer #1)

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Sheriff Tate had received word that Tom Robinson was going to be transferred to the Maycomb County jail, and he had come to Atticus's house to give him the news. Other concerned citizens had followed him to show their support, and they congregated in Atticus's front yard.

     In Maycomb, grown men stood outside in the front yard for only two reasons: death and politics. I wondered who had died.

Tate worried that there might be some sort of trouble, but Atticus tried to make light of the situation.

     "Don't be foolish, Heck," Atticus said. "This is Maycomb...
"I don't think anybody in Maycomb'll begrudge me a client, with times this hard."

Link Deas, who was also present, agreed with Atticus, but he added that

"... it's that Old Sarum bunch I'm worried about...."

The Sheriff's and Mr. Deas's worries were not unfounded, and the next night the sheriff was called away on a "snipe hunt," leaving Atticus to defend Tom alone at the jail when another group of men arrived--men from Old Sarum.

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