Runaway slave advertisements essay

During the Revolutionary War Era Introduction Runaway advertisements and Notices of Committal are some of the most rewarding sources for ascertaining the movement, motivation, and destination of enslaved persons have have taken flight. Runaway ads were placed by slave owners or their representatives in newspapers. Committal Notices were announcements of capture and detainment of persons suspected of being fugitives from slavery.

Runaway slave advertisements essay

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Advertisement for Runaway Slaves, 11 August

Slavery in the new world from Africa to the Americas. Runaway ads were placed by slave owners or their representatives in newspapers.

These selection of the press in which to post such ads was aimed at recapture of the fugitive, so often ads were placed in papers outside of the slave's farm or plantation site.

Out-of-State owners, especially Virginians, advertised in Maryland's press for the state represented the last obstacle to the "free" North. Committal Notices were announcements of capture and detainment of persons suspected of being fugitives from slavery.

Not being able to prove their free status, persons so detained faced return to their masters if they were fugitivesor sale into slavery at the benefit of the county if no owner claimed the detainee.

Runaway slave advertisements essay

Only those able to prove their free status, by document or corroboration of status from white persons, were released. Owners seeking fugitives knew that is was to their advantage to give as complete a description of the person being sought as possible. Names and aliases, gender, age, physical features, and distinguishing marks, clothing and apparel are the most basic components.

Often a biographical sketch was included. This gave highlights about the fugitive's friends and familial connections in other parts of the state or region. The picture that emerges is one of a slave community that was not necessarily bounded by the farm or plantation property lines.

Many times, advertisers would give hints as to why the enslaved person may have taken flight.

Trends in the runaway slave advertisements

While such insights reflected masters' perceptions of the enslaved's world, and are frequently biased, the descriptive quality nonetheless provides researchers with valuable tools for understanding slave psychology as well as the give-and-take relationship between members of Maryland's slave society.

This area included some of the largest slaveholders in Missouri. Courtesy Kansas State Historical Society.Runaway Slave Advertisements During the Revolutionary War Era Introduction. Runaway advertisements and Notices of Committal are some of the most rewarding sources for ascertaining the movement, motivation, and destination of enslaved persons have have taken flight.

Advertisement for Runaway Slaves Fairfax County (Virginia) August 11, Ran away from a Plantation of the Subscriber’s, on Dogue Run in Fairfax, on Sunday the 9th Instant, the following Negroes, 1 viz. The Runaway slave is one of the most popular assignments among students' documents.

Teaching American History in Maryland - Documents for the Classroom - Maryland State Archives

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On the lives of fugitives: Runaway slave advertisement databases. Page Views: Many stole money, weapons, clothing, and forged free papers in preparation for the treacherous journey. Slave owners had vested interest in capturing and returning these 'fugitives' to maintain labor forces and productivity levels.

Therefore, it was. Advertisement for Runaway Slaves Fairfax County (Virginia) August 11, Ran away from a Plantation of the Subscriber’s, on Dogue Run in Fairfax, on .

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