Chapter 18

The next witness to be questioned was Mayella. She was very scared and nervous and began crying. The judge told her to just answer the questions and not to be afraid. Mayella’s story of the night she was attacked was that she was on her porch when Tom Robinson came by. Mayella asked him to chop up an old dresser for her and she would pay him a nickel. She said when he came into the yard he attacked her. She said she screamed and fought back. Atticus asked Mayella about her relationship with her father. He asked her if her father had ever beaten her. Mayella answered that he had never touched her. Atticus still believed that Mr. Ewell, not Tom Robinson hurt Mayella. Atticus had Tom Robinson stand up and then asked Mayella if this was the man who beat her. She said it definitely was. Scout noticed that when Tom stood up that his left arm was 12 inches shorter than this right arm. Reverend Sykes sitting next to Scout told her he got his arm caught in a cotton gin machine and cannot use that arm!

Atticus again questioned Mayella and said wasn’t it her father who beat her up and not Tom? But she cried and still said it was Tom. The trial was over for the day.