Chapter 2 Summary

Byron Bunch recalls the day three years previously when Joe Christmas arrived in Jefferson, wearing worn city clothes: he looks down on his luck but not like he intends to stay down. Joe looked at the men in the mill, spat, then turned away. This outrages the men, who know nothing about him. They are surprised when Joe Christmas is hired immediately to work at the mill. Christmas begins to work without changing his clothes, which causes the other men to become even more suspicious of him. The next day, Christmas is at work before the other men arrive, still wearing his city clothes. He separates himself from the other workers, quietly doing his job of scooping sawdust into a pile. Only Byron speaks to him when Christmas does not...

(The entire section is 605 words.)