American Slavery As It Is

American Slavery As It Is: Testimony of a Thousand Witnesses

Theodore Dwight Weld
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  • Book Info
    American Slavery As It Is
    Book Description:

    Compiled by a prominent abolitionist Theodore Dwight Weld,American Slavery As It Iscombines information taken from witnesses, and from active and former slave owners, to generate a condemnation of slavery from both those who observed it and those who perpetuated it. The narrative describes the appalling day-to-day conditions of the over 2,700,000 men, women and children in slavery in the United States. Weld demonstrates how even prisoners--in the United States and in other countries--were significantly better fed than American slaves. Readers will find one of the most meticulous records of slave life available in this text. Unlike personal slave narratives, which focus on a single man or woman's experience,American Slaverydetails the overall conditions of slaves across multiple states and several years.A DOCSOUTH BOOK. This collaboration between UNC Press and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library brings selected classic works from the digital library of Documenting the American South back into print. DocSouth Books uses the latest digital technologies to make these works available as downloadable e-books or print-on-demand publications. DocSouth Books are unaltered from the original publication, providing affordable and easily accessible editions to a new generation of scholars, students, and general readers.

    eISBN: 978-1-4696-0287-5
    Subjects: Sociology, History

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. 1-2)
  2. About This Edition
    (pp. 3-3)
  3. [Illustrations]
    (pp. 4-4)
    (pp. 5-15)
    (pp. 16-22)

    READER, you are empannelled as a juror to try a plain case and bring in an honest verdict. The question at issue is not one of law, but of fact—“What is the actual condition of the slaves in the United States?” A plainer case never went to a jury. Look at it. TWENTY-SEVEN HUNDRED THOUSAND PERSONS in this country, men, women, and children, are in SLAVERY. Is slavery, as a condition for human beings, good, bad, or indifferent? We submit the question without argument. You have common sense, and conscience, and a human heart;—pronounce upon it. You have...

    (pp. 23-68)

    MR. NEHEMIAH CAULKINS, of Waterford, New London Co., Connecticut, has furnished the Executive Committee of the American Anti-Slavery Society, with the following statements relative to the condition and treatment of slaves, in the south eastern part of North Carolina. Most of the facts related by Mr. Caulkins fell under his personal observation. The air of candor and honesty that pervades the narrative, the manner in which Mr. C. has drawn it up, the good sense, just views, conscience and heart which it exhibits, are sufficient of themselves to commend it to all who have ears to hear.

    The Committee have...

    (pp. 69-116)

    WE begin with thefoodof the slaves, because if they are ill treated in this respect we may be sure that they will be ill treated in other respects, and generally in a greater degree. For a man habitually to stint his dependents in their food, is the extreme of meanness and cruelty, and the greatest evidence he can give of utter indifference to their comfort. The father who stints his children or domestics, or the master his apprentices, or the employer his laborers, or the officer his soldiers, or the captain his crew, when able to furnish them...

    (pp. 117-238)

    Mr. ALLAN is a son of the Rev. Dr. Allan, a slaveholder and pastor of the Presbyterian Church at Huntsville, Alabama. He has recently become the pastor of the Presbyterian Church in Chatham, Illinois.

    “I was born and have lived most of my life in the slave states, mainly in the village of Huntsville, Alabama, where my parents still reside. I seldom went to aplantation, and as my visits were confined almost exclusively to the families of professing Christians,my personalknowledge of slavery, was consequently a knowledge ofits fairestside, (if fairest may be predicated of foul.)...

    (pp. 239-282)

    Mr. HAWLEY is the pastor of the Baptist Church in Colebrook, Litchfield county, Connecticut. He has resided fourteen years in the slave states, North and South Carolina. His character and standing with his own denomination at the south, may be inferred from the fact, that the Baptist State Convention of North Carolina appointed him, a few years since, their general agent to visit the Baptist churches within their bounds, and to secure their co-operation in the objects of the Convention. Mr. H. accepted the appointment, and for some time traveled in that capacity.

    “I rejoice that the Executive Committee of...

    (pp. 283-520)

    THE enormities inflicted by slaveholders upon their slaves will never be discredited except by those who overlook the simple fact, that he who holds human beings as his bona fide property,regardsthem as property, and not aspersons; this is his permanent state of mind toward them. He does not contemplate slaves as human beings, consequently does nottreatthem as such; and with entire indifference sees them suffer privations and writhe under blows, which, if inflicted upon whites, would fill him with horror and indignation. He regards that as good treatment of slaves, which would seem to him...

  11. INDEX.
    (pp. 521-551)