Runaway Slaves: Rebels on the Plantation

Runaway Slaves: Rebels on the Plantation

by John Hope Franklin, Loren Schweninger
     
 

ISBN-10: 0195084519

ISBN-13: 9780195084511

Pub. Date: 07/28/2000

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA


From John Hope Franklin, America's foremost African American historian, comes this groundbreaking analysis of slave resistance and escape. A sweeping panorama of plantation life before the Civil War, this book reveals that slaves frequently rebelled against their masters and ran away from their plantations whenever they could.
For generations,…  See more details below

Overview


From John Hope Franklin, America's foremost African American historian, comes this groundbreaking analysis of slave resistance and escape. A sweeping panorama of plantation life before the Civil War, this book reveals that slaves frequently rebelled against their masters and ran away from their plantations whenever they could.
For generations, important aspects about slave life on the plantations of the American South have remained shrouded. Historians thought, for instance, that slaves were generally pliant and resigned to their roles as human chattel, and that racial violence on the plantation was an aberration. In this precedent setting book, John Hope Franklin and Loren Schweninger demonstrate that, contrary to popular belief, significant numbers of slaves did in fact frequently rebel against their masters and struggled to attain their freedom. By surveying a wealth of documents, such as planters' records, petitions to county courts and state legislatures, and local newspapers, this book shows how slaves resisted, when, where, and how they escaped, where they fled to, how long they remained in hiding, and how they survived away from the plantation. Of equal importance, it examines the reactions of the white slaveholding class, revealing how they marshaled considerable effort to prevent runaways, meted out severe punishments, and established patrols to hunt down escaped slaves.
Reflecting a lifetime of thought by our leading authority in African American history, this book provides the key to truly understanding the relationship between slaveholders and the runaways who challenged the system--illuminating as never before the true nature of the South's "most peculiar institution."

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780195084511
Publisher:
Oxford University Press, USA
Publication date:
07/28/2000
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
480
Sales rank:
475,173
Product dimensions:
9.00(w) x 6.10(h) x 1.40(d)

Table of Contents

Preface
Acknowledgments
1. Dissidents in the Conscript Army
Day to Day Resistance
Hired Slave Dissatisfaction
Open Defiance
Slaves and Overseers
Conspiracies
The Pride of Dissidence
2. On the Run
Death of the Master
The Plantation Household
Opportunity
Assisted by Whites
Dissatisfaction of Hired Slaves
Merely To Be Free
Cruel and Unusual Punishment
3. Whither Thou Goest
Breakup of Families
Loved Ones
Husbands and Wives
Mothers and Children
Families and Relatives
Assistance
Lost Forever
4. A Matter of Some Urgency
Assault and Murder
Stealing
Violence in Defense of Freedom
Collective Resistance
Clandestine Slave Economy
Retribution
5. Where To Go?
Absentees
Lying Out
To Strike a Bargain
Distant Points
Farther South and Elsewhere
The Promised Land
In Which Direction?
6. They Seek a City
Temporary Sojourners
Remaining at Large
Runaways as Hired Slaves
Hired Slaves as Runaways
Self-hired Slaves as Runaways
The Urban Interlude
The Fate of Jane
7. The Hunt
Laws and Patrols
Slave Catchers
Negro Dogs
Masters in Pursuit
Advertisements and Rewards
Incarceration
8. Backward into Bondage
Taken up as Runaways
Free Black Runaways
Sold as Slaves
Joseph Antoine's Sorrow
Free Black Owners of Runaways
Runaway Children in Maryland
9. Profile of a Runaway
Age and Gender
Color and Physical Characteristics
Appearance
Personality Traits and Countenance
How and When Slaves Absconded
African-born Runaways
10. Managing Human Property
Managers and Overseers
What Should Masters Do?
Self-perceptions and Managing Slaves
Plantation Mistresses and Slave Governance
Discarding the Aged and Infirm
Anxiety, Trouble, Expense
11. Counting the Cost
Dishonor Among Masters
The Conspiracy Theory
Estimating Frequencies and Owners' Costs
The Impact of Runaways on the Peculiar Institution
A Note on Primary Sources
Appendix 1: Newspaper Advertisements
Tennessee Notice for a Negro man named Sam
Tennessee Notice for a Negro man named Jim
Alabama Notice for Anthony, Billy, and Bartlett
South Carolina Notice for Ceely and Frances or Fanny
Louisiana Notice for Molly
Appendix 2: Petitions to State Legislatures and County Courts
Petition to the Virginia General Assembly
Petition to the South Carolina Senate
Petition to the South Carolina Senate
Petition to the North Carolina General Assembly
Petition to the Orleans Parish District Court
Petition to the Baltimore County Orphans Court
Petition to the Frederick County, Maryland, Court
Petition to the Tennessee General Assembly
Appendix 3: Location and Possible Destinations of Runaways Cited in the Nashville Whig, 1812-1816
Appendix 4: Location and Possible Destinations of Runaways Cited in the Tennessee Republican Banner (Nashville), 1840-1842
Appendix 5: Damages Sought by Henry Crane for Runaway Lewis, 1851
Appendix 6: Correspondence
Letter of Runaway Joseph Taper to white acquaintance Joseph Long, 11 November 1840
Letter of Cotton Factory Owner Abram Riddick to Slaveowner William Glover, 22 July 1848
Appendix 7: Runaway Slave Database: Early Period 1790-1816; Late Period 1838-1860
Abbreviations
Notes
Bibliography
Credits
Index

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