Most Americans, both black and white, believe that slavery was a system maintained by whites to exploit blacks, but this authoritative study reveals the extent to which African Americans played a significant role as slave masters. Examining South Carolina’s diverse population of African-American slaveowners, the book demonstrates that free African Americans widely embraced slavery as a viable economic system and that theylike their white counterpartsexploited the labor of slaves on their farms and in their businesses.
Drawing on the federal census, wills, mortgage bills of sale, tax returns, and newspaper advertisements, the author reveals the nature of African-American slaveholding, its complexity, and its rationales. He describes how some African-American slave masters had earned their freedom but how many othersprimarily mulattoes born of free parentswere unfamiliar with slavery’s dehumanization.
|Publisher:||McFarland & Company, Incorporated Publishers|
|Product dimensions:||5.80(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)|
About the Author
Historian Larry Koger lives in Largo, Maryland.
Table of Contents
Table of Contents
List of Tables xi
1. Free Black Slaveholding and the Federal Census 5
2. The Numbers and Distribution of Black Slaveholding 18
3. From Slavery to Freedom to Slaveownership 31
4. “Buying My Chidrum from Ole Massa” 45
5. Neither a Slave Nor a Free Person 69
6. The Woodson Thesis: Fact or Fiction? 80
7. White Rice, White Cotton, Brown Planters, Black Slaves 102
8. Free Black Artisans: A Need for Labor 140
9. The Denmark Vesey Conspiracy: Brown Masters vs. Black Slaves 160
10. No More Black Massa 187
Appendix A. Tables for Chapter One 201
Appendix B. Table for Chapter Two 209
Appendix C. Tables for Chapter Six 231