Race and Slavery Petitions Project

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PAR Number 11282703

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Perquimans Location Type: County

Abstract: Thirty-seven Perquimans County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282704

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Surry Location Type: County

Abstract: Eighty Surry County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282705

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Davidson Location Type: County

Abstract: Thirty-seven Davidson County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282706

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Randolph Location Type: County

Abstract: Eighty-one Randolph County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282711

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Guilford Location Type: County

Abstract: Seven hundred twenty Guilford County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282713

State: North Carolina Year: 1827

Abstract: The Manumission Society of North Carolina petitions to prevent the further "introduction of slaves from any other state into this [state] in any way whatsoever." They submit that "the slaves brought by Speculators" to North Carolina, "where they find a ready market for them," generally consist of "the most desperate, vicious characters that can be selected from their Masters farms, and the Goals of the Country, and consequently cannot with Safety be admitted into this State lest they corrupt the morals of others." Fearing the inevitable confrontation between slaveholding and nonslaveholding states, the petitioners "hope that the time will arrive when our National Government and State Legislatures will come to an understanding upon this important National subject, and adopt some plan by which slavery will be abolished in the Country." The Society, however, believes "that to emancipate our Slaves and permit them to remain amongst us would be impolitic, and would neither secure our safety or materially better their condition." They instead propose freed blacks be "removed beyond the limits of our Government."

PAR Number 11282714

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Davidson Location Type: County

Abstract: Eighty-nine Davidson County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282715

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Davidson Location Type: County

Abstract: Sixty-two Davidson County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282716

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Davidson Location Type: County

Abstract: Fifteen Davidson County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282717

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Randolph Location Type: County

Abstract: Eighty-five Randolph County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282718

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Randolph Location Type: County

Abstract: Forty-three Randolph County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11282719

State: North Carolina Year: 1827
Location: Randolph Location Type: County

Abstract: Thirty-one Randolph County citizens, "convinced of the pernicious consequences of slave-dealers and others bringing into this State, slaves, many of whom are the most vicious characters that can be selected from farms, and from the gaols of the country," ask that a law be passed "to prevent the further introduction of slaves into this State, under any pretence whatsoever." The residents insist that the continued importation of slaves leads to the "great demoralization and corruption of other slaves, and to the detriment of the citizens."

PAR Number 11379501

State: South Carolina Year: 1795

Abstract: In January 1795, delegates from several societies promoting the abolition of slavery convened in Philadelphia. Arguing that "nothing can be effectual while the number of Slaves may be daily increased by importation, and while the minds of our Citizens are debased, and their hearts hardened, by contemplating these people only through the medium of avarice or prejudice (a necessary consequence of the traffic in Man)," the delegates seek a "total prohibition of all traffic in Slaves, between your State and every other Nation or State, either by importation or exportation."

PAR Number 11383905

State: South Carolina Year: 1839
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: H. L. Pinckney, Mayor of Charleston, on behalf of the City Council, reports that "they have recently passed an ordinance establishing a mart for the public sale of slaves within the corporate limits of the City by which it is provided that after the erection of said mart no slaves shall be sold by brokers and others at public auction or outcry except at the mart so established by the City." He points out "this measure has been resorted to as an important act of public policy and convenience" and that "it was very much desired by public opinion and the interests of planters and others having large bodies of Slaves for sale." Pinckney further notes that "it may not be improper to add that the prices of keeping slaves at the said mart and the expenses attending the keeping and sale of slaves there are decidedly cheaper than at any other place in Charleston." Pinckney concludes by asserting that "the object of establishing a mart is not to make money for the City, but to carry out an important measure of public policy, and to accommodate the public respecting the safety and the sale of large gangs of negroes."

PAR Number 11384205

State: South Carolina Year: 1842
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: John Strohecker and other South Carolina slave owners seek compensation for "the loss of Seventy or Eighty negro slaves on Board the Schooner Enterprize." He reports that said vessel, "through the stress of weather, was compelled to make a harbour on the Island of Bermuda, from a voyage from the District of Columbia in the United States, to the port of Charleston South Carolina, sometime in the year 1835." He further relates that "the vessel had but barely anchored in the harbour before she was boarded by the constituted authorities of the place, and the slaves, were forcibly seized, detained or set at liberty from their owners, in opposition to the determined efforts of the master and crew of the vessel." Strohecker argues that many of the owners are "Widows and orphans, who feel the loss very severely." Noting that said property had been insured by the Marine and Fire Insurance Company of Charleston, the petitioners "urge upon your honorable body, the justice and equity of your remunerating them for their severe losses."

PAR Number 11384301

State: South Carolina Year: 1843
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Ninety-seven petitioners represent "this State and the City of Charleston in particular have become the common place of meeting between the Slave dealer from places north of us and the purchaser South West of us." They point out that "the motive of the Slave dealer is not only to approach as near as he can to his buyers, but to remove the slave as far from his old range, & from notorious bad character as possible," which "while on Sale here many vicious slaves are palmed upon careless or confiding Citizens among us, and their mixture with our own, has had a sensible influence upon the docility and usefulness of our slaves." They therefore seek legislation that will "prohibit ... the introduction of slaves into this State merely for sale." They further request additional sanctions to the Act of 1740, which "prohibits the slave from sleeping or living out of his Master's premises or of those of some white person appointed by the master."

PAR Number 11385201

State: South Carolina Year: 1852
Location: Barnwell Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Failing to file a tax return, Joseph Allen was issued a writ of fieri facias by the Barnwell District tax office and was forced to pay $207.52 in taxes, double the amount he claims to owe. Allen argues that he failed to file his return "in consequence of the sickness of the Tax Collector. In addition, he asserts that the 1851 assessment “was governed by the last return of your Petitioner and did include in his assessment one hundred and two negroes at fifty-six (56) cents per head making the sum of fifty seven dollars and twelve cents ($57.12) which said one hundred and two negroes had been removed from this State [to Louisiana] prior to the 30th Sept 1851.” He seeks reimbursement.

PAR Number 11480903

State: Tennessee Year: 1808
Location: Jefferson Location Type: County

Abstract: A memorial from the quarterly meeting of the Society of Friends in Jefferson County states that "the most prominent evil which at this time seems to claim our serious attention & consideration, is the subject of slavery" and that "to this subject we beg leave to call your particular attention, desiring that you would exercise your judgment on endeavouring to do away [with] some or all of that innumerable evils interwoven therewith." They further argue that "more effectual" means are needed to stop "the introduction of slaves into this state," not only by "negro traders, but also by those who may remove here," as they believe "that every instance of a slave being brought into the state is adding to the already enormous evil & that such penal laws might be passed as would effectually prevent any more being brought in under any pretext whatever."

PAR Number 11481734

State: Tennessee Year: 1817
Location: Knox Location Type: County

Abstract: Ninety-five residents of Knoxville are deeply concerned about the "inconsistency of Slavery with republican principles and the natural rights of man." They therefore "lay before you their Sentiments on the Same interesting subject.” They propose that slaves be prevented from entering the state; that slaveholders be permitted to free their slaves by wills without putting up a security bond, while slave traders and others be prohibited from selling family members away from one another; and that "the removal of people of colour, as they become free from our own to a distant continent would be productive of great advantage to the colonists, as well as to the United States."

PAR Number 11481903

State: Tennessee Year: 1819

Abstract: James Jones, president of the Manumission Society of Tennessee, represents that said Society is "encouraged to hope that you will devise a plan for a total Emancipation, calculated at the same time to leave the white population in the ample enjoyment and possession of their property which ... may be effected by passing a law that all the Children of slaves which may be born after a certain period shall be free at a proper age; and that the owners of slaves be permitted to liberate all such as are capable of procuring a living, without any responsibility on the part of the Emancipator." The society would also "suggest the propriety of the interposition of Legislative authority to put an end to the inhuman and Barbarous practice of trading in human flesh" and the breaking up of black families.

PAR Number 11483213

State: Tennessee Year: 1832
Location: Jackson Location Type: County

Abstract: The widow and children of the late Col. William Locke ask that the administrator of his estate be allowed to sell parcels of land rather than the fifteen slaves in order to settle the debts of the intestate. The heirs assert that only three of said slaves are "able to Labour"; two of them are "old and infirm ... the other Ten young and none of them at this time would sell for their value." The petitioners point out that Locke owned 962 acres, divided into ten tracts, as well as lots in the town of Gainesboro. They therefore pray "your Honourable Boddy to pass a Law ... to sell the Town lotts." The petitioners fear that the "whole of the negroes," if put up for sale, would be "Draged a way by Traders to the lower country," leaving the widow "now in her old age without any person to releave her from the burden of hard labour." Moreover, they surmise that the young slaves are "fast increasing in Value and in a few years will be worth more to the Heirs than the whole of the land."

PAR Number 11484702

State: Tennessee Year: 1847
Location: Shelby Location Type: County

Abstract: Twenty-one citizens of Shelby County complain that "there are large droves of Negroes being brought into our County for sale Contrary to law." They therefore pray "your honorable body that the law be so amended as to make it the duty of the Sheriff Constables and Grand Jurors to Prosecute any and every person who brings Slaves into our state for sale."

PAR Number 11680207

State: Virginia Year: 1802

Abstract: The Society of Friends, acknowledging the difficulties attendant to the desirable complete eradication of slavery, seeks alleviation of the suffering it causes and amelioration of the degraded condition of the slave population. Specifically, the Friends seek the passing of laws to eliminate the domestic slave trade, which allows "purchasing numbers of those unfortunate Persons, and carrying them out of the limits of this state; often to places, where the rigors of Slavery are multiplied, and the bitterness of their unhappy Situation increased." They also ask for an end to the forcible separation of black families.

PAR Number 11681809

State: Virginia Year: 1818
Location: Amelia Location Type: County

Abstract: On 24 March 1816, the slave Hannibal absconded from his owner, William Cassels, in Amelia County, and several weeks later, on 16 April 1816, he was captured and jailed in Chesterfield County. Hannibal lied about his name, place of residence, and the name of his owner. When his owner could not be located, he was sold in September 1817 for $506 "according to law to pay prison fees" to a slave trader named G. G. Washington. Later Cassels discovered the fate of his slave, who finally confessed to one Anderson P. Miller what his real name was and the name of his owner. In fact Hannibal, a "yellow complected" man, made the observation that although "he was veary well pleased with his master … his Mistress was blacker than himself and he had determined on not gowing to that plantation again." Cassels seeks to be reimbursed the amount paid into the state treasury from the sale of his slave.

PAR Number 11681903

State: Virginia Year: 1819
Location: Louisa Location Type: County

Abstract: Barbara W. Pettus seeks a divorce from her husband Hugh M. Pettus, whom she had married about 1809 only to discover he was a man of immoral character. Not only was he engaged in "wicked and vicious pursuit" of trading slaves from Maryland and Virginia to South Carolina and Georgia, but when he returned home about every six months he brought with him "coloured female Slaves, his kept mistresses." He finally decided to move to Georgia, and she believed it was her duty to accompany him; but he has run off with "a young woman of respectable family," with whom he lives as man and wife.

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