Race and Slavery Petitions Project

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PAR Number 10381810

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Six citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381811

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Sixty-three citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381812

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Thirty-four citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381813

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Forty-four citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381814

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Sixty-one citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381815

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Forty-one citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381816

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Twenty-five citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381817

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Seventy-four citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10381818

State: Delaware Year: 1818

Abstract: Fifty-five citizens of Delaware express concern about the increasing number of kidnappings of free people of color, who are "wrested from their families and carried into perpetual bondage." They assert that this "iniquitous traffic" is "both known and deplored by many of the members of the Legislature themselves; but bounds can never be set to its progress, till some Law be granted whose penalty shall exceed the hope of advantage from this commerce." They further note that the grand jury of Baltimore County "are among others, petitioners to the Legislature of Maryland, for a Law of similar effect with that for which we petition." The petitioners "therefore submit our Memorial and Petition to the Legislature, expecting its success from their justice, and hoping it from their humanity."

PAR Number 10382401

State: Delaware Year: 1824
Location: Sussex Location Type: County

Abstract: Fifty-four citizens seek the repeal of an 1816 Delaware law "concerning free Negroes & mulattoes, Servants & Slaves." The subscribers submit that "the free negroes have become an intolerable nuisance & expensive burthen to the good citizens of this county." In their opinion, the law in question administers “no punishment whatsoever … on a free coloured person convicted of felony.” They avow that free people of color “are sold for little or nothing,” quickly released, and soon go back to thieving. They contend that free blacks steal with impunity and "of late seem to glory in it." The petitioners therefore pray "the Legislature, to take the premises into consideration & put a stop to this growing evil, either by repealing the said act of assembly (by which people of colour are so much more favoured than white citizens) or in some other way as the Legislature in their wisdom shall think meet."

PAR Number 10382408

State: Delaware Year: 1824
Location: Sussex Location Type: County

Abstract: Twenty-six citizens seek the repeal of an 1816 Delaware law "Concerning free Negroes free Mulattoes Servants & Slaves." The subscribers submit that "the free people of Colour have Become an Intolerable Nuisance & expensive burden to the good Citizens of the County." In their opinion, the law in question administers “no Punishment whatever ... on a free Negro or Mulatto convicted of felony.” They avow that free people of color “are Sold for little or nothing,” quickly released, and soon go back to thieving. They contend that free blacks "Steal with impunity, and of late seem to glory in it." The petitioners therefore pray "the Legislature to take the premises into consideration and put a stop to this growing evil, either by Repealing the said act of Assembly (by which people of Colour have so much more favour shewn them than White Citizens) or in some other way as they in their wisdom shall think meet."

PAR Number 10382409

State: Delaware Year: 1824
Location: Kent Location Type: County

Abstract: Eighty-one citizens seek the repeal of an 1816 Delaware law "Concerning free Negroes free Mulattoes Servants & Slaves." The subscribers submit that "the free People of Colour have Become an Intolerable nuisance & expensive Burden to the Good Citizens of the County." In their opinion, the law in question administers “no Effectual Punishment whatever ... on a free negro, or Mulatto Convicted of Felony.” They avow that free people of color “are Sold for little or nothing,” quickly released, and soon go back to thieving. They contend that free blacks "Steal with Impunity and of late seem to Glory in it." The petitioners therefore pray "the Legislature, to take the Premises into Consideration and to apply an Efficient Remedy; Either by Repealing the Said Act of Assembly by which People of Colour are so much encouraged to the Commission of Crimes or in Some other way as the wisdom of the Legislature shall think Meet."

PAR Number 10382410

State: Delaware Year: 1824
Location: Sussex Location Type: County

Abstract: One hundred and seven citizens seek the repeal of an 1816 Delaware law "Concerning free Negroes, free Mulattoes, Servants & Slaves." The subscribers submit that "the free people of Colour have become an Intolerable Nuisance and expensive burthen to the good Citizens of this County." In their opinion, the law in question administers “no punishment Whatever ... on a free negro or mulatto convicted of felony.” They avow that free people of color “are Sold for little or nothing,” quickly released, and soon go back to thieving. They contend that free blacks "Steal with Impunity and of late seem to glory in it." The petitioners therefore pray "the Legislature to take the premises into Consideration and put a stop to this growing evil; either by Repealing the said Act of Assembly (by which People of Colour are so much more favoured than White Citizens) or in some other way as the legislature in their wisdom shall think Meet."

PAR Number 10382411

State: Delaware Year: 1824
Location: Sussex Location Type: County

Abstract: Fifty citizens seek the repeal of an 1816 Delaware law "Concerning free Negroes, free Mulattoes, Servants & Slaves." The subscribers submit that "the free people of Colour have become an Intolerable Nuisance and expensive burden to the good Citizens of this County." In their opinion, the law in question administers “no punishment Whatever ... on a free Negro or Mulatto Convicted of felony.” They avow that free people of color “are Sold for little or nothing,” quickly released, and soon go back to thieving. They contend that free blacks "Steal with Impunity and of late seem to glory in it." The petitioners therefore pray "the Legislature to take the premises into Consideration and put a Stop to this growing evil, either by Repealing the said act of Assembly (by which people of Colour have so much more favour shown them than White Citizens) or in some other way as the wisdom of the legislature shall think meet."

PAR Number 10382505

State: Delaware Year: 1825

Abstract: Sixteen citizens seek a law prohibiting persons of colour from assembling at the polls during general elections. The petitioners claim that persons of color "assemble at the several places where the general Elections of this State are held, on the days of holding said Elections, to the great annoyance and inconvenience of the Electors, who assemble to exercise their right of sufferage, and by fighting, quarreling, and other notorious and unlawful behavior" tend "to interrupt the propriety of said Elections,” thereby encouraging "Vice and immorality, which said abuses demand a speedy and effectual remedy." The petitioners pray that a law be passed "prohibiting said persons of Colour to assemble at the place of holding said Elections on the day said Elections are held under pain of said punishment."

PAR Number 10382506

State: Delaware Year: 1825
Location: Sussex Location Type: County

Abstract: Fifty-five citizens seek a law prohibiting persons of colour from assembling at the polls during general elections. The petitioners claim that persons of color "assemble at the several places where the general Elections of this State are held, on the days of holding said Elections, to the great annoyance and inconvenience of the Electors, who assemble to exercise their right of sufferage, and by fighting, quarreling, and other notorious and unlawful behavior" tend "to interrupt the propriety of said Elections,” thereby encouraging "Vice and immorality, which said abuses demand a speedy and effectual remedy." The petitioners pray that a law be passed "prohibiting said persons of Colour to assemble at the place of holding said Elections on the day said Elections are held under pain of said punishment."

PAR Number 10382701

State: Delaware Year: 1827
Location: New Castle Location Type: County

Abstract: The chairman of the Wilmington Union Colonization Society expresses concern about the expanding free black population. Robert Porter argues that free people of color do not and cannot enjoy the most important civil privileges (voting and office holding), cannot associate with whites, and will not be accepted on a basis of equality. Porter defends the legally sanctioned separation by declaring that "our separation from these people is the effect of moral causes, the foundations of which we could not safely remove; amalgamation would demoralize society; the consequence of breaking up the present distinctions would be not to raise the free coloured people, but to sink all to a state of degradation yet unknown.” He therefore suggests "the removal of these people" to the west “coast of Africa” as the solution to what he describes "people by their very condition our enemies." In Porter's opinion, the American Colonization Society is deserving of more "of the resources of the National Government" and if the Society were able to make "this removal general and common, there can be no doubt, that this whole population would flow in a current in that direction."

PAR Number 10383301

State: Delaware Year: 1833

Abstract: Thirteen free people of color petition for the repeal of "An Act to prevent the use of fire Arms by free negroes and free mulattoes and for other purposes" that was passed by the Delaware legislature on 10 February 1832. The law, they argue, "has a demoralizing effect upon the free People of Colour, for by placing them under suspicion -- making them to feel that the eyes of the white people are continually over them, whether for good or ill" and it "interferes with their religious privileges, violates their rights of conscience -- and exposes them to all the horrors of perpetual slavery for the act of worshipping their Creator, according to the dictates of their consciences." They proclaim that they have always conducted themselves in a peaceable and quiet manner and that many among them have acquired land and other property. Flattering "themselves, that they had gained the confidence of their superiors" and that they have never done anything that "would, or ought to have forfeited the good opinion of white people," the petitioners "humbly pray a repeal of that act."

PAR Number 10383302

State: Delaware Year: 1833
Location: Unknown Location Type: County

Abstract: Three free people of color petition for the repeal of "An Act to prevent the use of fire Arms by free negroes and free mulattoes and for other purposes" that was passed by the Delaware legislature on 10 February 1832. The law, they argue, "has a demoralizing effect upon the free People of Colour, for by placing them under suspicion -- making them to feel that the eyes of the white people are continually over them, whether for good or ill" and it "interferes with their religious privileges, violates their rights of conscience -- and exposes them to all the horrors of perpetual slavery for the act of worshipping their Creator, according to the dictates of their consciences." They proclaim that they have always conducted themselves in a peaceable and quiet manner and that many among them have acquired land and other property. Flattering "themselves, that they had gained the confidence of their superiors" and that they have never done anything that "would, or ought to have forfeited the good opinion of white people," the petitioners "humbly pray a repeal of that act."

PAR Number 10383303

State: Delaware Year: 1833

Abstract: Twenty-seven free people of color petition for the repeal of "An Act to prevent the use of fire Arms by free negroes and free mulattoes and for other purposes" that was passed by the Delaware legislature on 10 February 1832. The law, they argue, "has a demoralizing effect upon the free People of Colour, for by placing them under suspicion -- making them to feel that the eyes of the white people are continually over them, whether for good or ill" and it "interferes with their religious privileges, violates their rights of conscience -- and exposes them to all the horrors of perpetual slavery for the act of worshipping their Creator, according to the dictates of their consciences." They proclaim that they have always conducted themselves in a peaceable and quiet manner and that many among them have acquired land and other property. Flattering "themselves, that they had gained the confidence of their superiors" and that they have never done anything that "would, or ought to have forfeited the good opinion of white people," the petitioners "humbly pray a repeal of that act."

PAR Number 10383304

State: Delaware Year: 1833

Abstract: Twenty-eight free people of color petition for the repeal of "An Act to prevent the use of fire Arms by free negroes and free mulattoes and for other purposes" that was passed by the Delaware legislature on 10 February 1832. The law, they argue, "has a demoralizing effect upon the free People of Colour, for by placing them under suspicion -- making them to feel that the eyes of the white people are continually over them, whether for good or ill" and it "interferes with their religious privileges, violates their rights of conscience -- and exposes them to all the horrors of perpetual slavery for the act of worshipping their Creator, according to the dictates of their consciences." They proclaim that they have always conducted themselves in a peaceable and quiet manner and that many among them have acquired land and other property. Flattering "themselves, that they had gained the confidence of their superiors" and that they have never done anything that "would, or ought to have forfeited the good opinion of white people," the petitioners "humbly pray a repeal of that act."

PAR Number 10383305

State: Delaware Year: 1833

Abstract: Thirty-nine citizens of Delaware support the petition of the free people of color seeking "the repeal of the Act of the 10th February last [1832]" regarding the right to possess firearms and the right to assemble and hold worship services.

PAR Number 10383306

State: Delaware Year: 1833

Abstract: Nine free people of color petition for the repeal of "An Act to prevent the use of fire Arms by free negroes and free mulattoes and for other purposes" that was passed by the Delaware legislature on 10 February 1832. The law, they argue, "has a demoralizing effect upon the free People of Colour, for by placing them under suspicion -- making them to feel that the eyes of the white people are continually over them, whether for good or ill" and it "interferes with their religious privileges, violates their rights of conscience -- and exposes them to all the horrors of perpetual slavery for the act of worshipping their Creator, according to the dictates of their consciences." They proclaim that they have always conducted themselves in a peaceable and quiet manner and that many among them have acquired land and other property. Flattering "themselves, that they had gained the confidence of their superiors" and that they have never done anything that "would, or ought to have forfeited the good opinion of white people," the petitioners "humbly pray a repeal of that act."

PAR Number 10383307

State: Delaware Year: 1833

Abstract: Nine free people of color petition for the repeal of "An Act to prevent the use of fire Arms by free negroes and free mulattoes and for other purposes" that was passed by the Delaware legislature on 10 February 1832. The law, they argue, "has a demoralizing effect upon the free People of Colour, for by placing them under suspicion -- making them to feel that the eyes of the white people are continually over them, whether for good or ill" and it "interferes with their religious privileges, violates their rights of conscience -- and exposes them to all the horrors of perpetual slavery for the act of worshipping their Creator, according to the dictates of their consciences." They proclaim that they have always conducted themselves in a peaceable and quiet manner and that many among them have acquired land and other property. Flattering "themselves, that they had gained the confidence of their superiors" and that they have never done anything that "would, or ought to have forfeited the good opinion of white people," the petitioners "humbly pray a repeal of that act."

PAR Number 10383308

State: Delaware Year: 1833

Abstract: Two citizens of Delaware support the petition of the free people of color seeking "the repeal of the Act of the 10th February last [1832]" regarding the right to possess firearms and the right to assemble and hold worship services.

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