Chapter 22, "Farwell," begins with Lyddie reeling from her dismissal from her job at the mill. She will need to leave Lowell and is very uncertain about her future. The official reason given for her dismissal is being accused of "moral turpitude," words that Lyddie does not even understand. This frustrates and upsets her even more.
When she informs her roommates and the landlady that she has been dismissed, they are incredulous that such a nice and hardworking girl could be fired. Lyddie goes to the bank and withdraws all her savings. She buys a copy of Oliver Twist for Bridgett as a farewell gift. She also buys a dictionary so that she can look up the meaning of turpitude. She is shocked to learn its meaning because it does not describe her at all.
Lyddie then goes to Bridgett. She tells her the news of her dismissal and gives her Oliver Twist. She also gives Bridgett a letter explaining Mr. Marsden's transgressions. Bridgett can use this letter as blackmail in case Mr. Marsden were to treat Bridgett poorly again. Before leaving Lowell, Lyddie finds Mr. Marsden and informs him of the letter.
Lyddie then heads to Boston where she meets up with Diana. She tells her friend all that has happened. Diana is actually pleased to hear that Lyddie stood up to the management. As the chapter ends, they celebrate with some tea. The next morning, Lyddie leaves for Vermont.
Chapter 23, "Vermont, November 1846," involves Lyddie's return to Cutler's Tavern. Triphena welcomes her back and they have a cordial and lively conversation. Lyddie was hoping to find work at the tavern, but there is none for her. She spends the night there and finds readjusting to the quiet of the countryside to be difficult.
The next day Lyddie walks to her old cabin. No one is there, but Lyddie lets herself in and starts a fire. Luke comes in and is surprised to see her. Luke insists that she stay the night, maybe longer. Lyddie informs Luke that she will leave to go attend college in Ohio. Even though she is resolute on leaving and "facing the bear," Lyddie has a feeling that she will return one day to marry Luke.
Chapter 22 begins with a very depressed Lyddie. She has been dismissed from the factory for "moral terpitude." She is no longer Mr. Marsden's best girl. She no longer has the ability to earn the money she has been so desperately seeking all throughout the book. Lyddie takes some solace from knowing that Rachel and Charlie are in good hands. Lyddie tells Mrs. Bedlow that she will be leaving, and Lyddie's initial plan is to go back to Triphena and work at the tavern. She then goes to the bank and withdraws her entire savings. Next, Lyddie goes to the book store and buys Brigid a copy of Oliver Twist. Lyddie is still frustrated that she doesn't know what terpitude means, so she also buys a dictionary. After discovering the word's meaning, Lyddie rushes home to write some letters, then rushes off to find Brigid. Lyddie explains to Brigid that if Mr. Marsden ever steps out of line in a sexual way again, Brigid is to mail the letter to Mrs. Marsden that explains everything that happened in the weaving room. Lyddie has a second letter that says basically the same thing to Mr. Marsden. Later that evening, Lyddie confronts Mr. Marsden, tells him she is not guilty of terpitude, and hands him the letter.
"Good night, Mr. Marsden. I hope you sleep easy—before you die."
Lyddie then heads to Boston to see Diana. Lyddie explains everything to Diana before leaving for Vermont.
Chapter 23 sees Lyddie back in Vermont. She goes to the tavern to get her job back, but the position is filled. Lyddie then attempts to see Charlie and Rachel, but they are at school. Lyddie moves on to her old farm. Luke shows up, and Lyddie tells him that she is going to Ohio to attend college. She also realizes that she is willing to marry Luke, and she hopes he waits for her.
Chapter 22. Lyddie withdraws all of her savings from the bank and buys another copy of Oliver Twist for Rachel and a dictionary. She finally discovers the meaning of "moral turpitude," and it makes her very angry. She tells Brigid why she was dismissed and that she has written a letter to Mr. Marsden to warn him what will happen if he fires Brigid. Later that evening, she confronts Mr. Marsden face to face. The next day she leaves town for Boston and looks up Diana. She is surprised and happy to discover that Diana is living with a widowed shopkeeper and her daughter. She is happy for Diana, but she is sad about her own life. After visiting with Diana, she continues on to Vermont.
Chapter 23. Lyddie returns to Cutler’s Tavern and is welcomed back by Triphena. Lyddie asks for her old job back, but that position has been filled. She then goes to see the Phinneys, where Charlie and Rachel are living. They are still at school when she gets there, so she decides to walk to the old farm. Once there, she builds a fire in the fireplace and sits in her mother's old rocking chair. Luke Stevens enters the house and apologizes for having written the letter in which he tells her that his father has bought the farm and proposes that she marry him. He asks her what her plans are, and she decisively tells him she plans to go to college. Somehow, Lyddie knows that someday she will marry Luke.