The Devil and Tom Walker

The Devil and Tom Walker

What clues were there that the person Tom was talking to was the Devil?
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Consider this quote:

"It is true he was dressed in a rude Indian garb, and had a red belt or sash swathed round his body; but his face was neither black nor copper-color, but swarthy and dingy, and begrimed with soot, as if he had been accustomed to toil among fires and forges. He had a shock of coarse black hair, that stood out from his head in all directions, and bore an axe on his shoulder."

This quote provides a description of Washington Irving's portrayal of the devil incarnate. Though at this point the story does not come right out and call Old Scratch the devil, there are some definite hints in this description that clue readers into this fact, notably the phrase "as if he had been accustomed to toil among fires and forges." Note that he is dark-skinned, not white; this says a lot about racial perceptions during this time period.