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Willis, 18 years old, brought $1400
500 Cincinnati Journal.
The following conversation between two planters, one from North Carolina, and the other from Mississippi, recently occurred on board one of our splendid North River Steamboats. It was given to us in writing, by a respectable citizen of Poughkeepsie, who heard it.
Mississippian. What is a young negro boy worth in North Carolina?
Carolinian. They fetch a great price there.
M. Are slaves scarce there at present?
C. They are scarce and high. Those that have slaves are out of debt, and of course able to hold them, or get their price.
M. What is a negro man worth?
C. I purchased one a short time since for $750.
C. They are much higher in proportion to other slaves.
M. Well, what would a good likely negro boy bring? C. Under fifty [pounds] they fetch NINE DOLLARS PER POUND, that is the common price!-An. S. Record.
The Slave Market of America,
The following advertisements will show why the capital of this nation has been called "the slave market of America."
CASH FOR 200 NEGROES.
We will give cash for two hundred likely young negroes, of both sexes, families included. Persons wishing to dispose of their slaves, will do well to give us a call, as we will give higher prices in cash, than any oth er purchasers who are now, or may hereafter come into
this market. We can at all times be found at our residence on 7th street, immediately South of the Centre Market House, Washington, D. C. September 13, 1834.
JOSEPH W. NEAL & Co.
One of the private prisons in Washington used for keeping slaves is owned by W. Robey, who is also engaged in the trade. In May, 1834, a gentleman visited it and fell into conversation with the overseer of the pen. He heard the clanking of chains within the pen. "O," said the overseer-himself a slave, "I have seen fifty or seventy slaves taken out of the pen, and the males chained together in pairs, and drove off to the South-and how they would cry, and groan, and take on, and wring their hands, but the driver would put on the whip and tell them to shut up-so they would go off and bear it as well as they could.
The standing advertisement of this house is as above.
CASH FOR 400 NEGROES,
Including both sexes, from 12 to 25 years of age. Persons having likely servants to dispose of will find it to their interest to give us a call, as we will give higher prices in cash than any other purchaser who is now, or may hereafter come into this market.
FRANKLIN & ARMFIELD,
Alexandria, Sept. 1, 1834.
Franklin and Armfield alone shipped to New Orleans during the year 1835, according to their own statement, not less than 1000 slaves. They own brigs of about 160 to 200 tons burthen, running regularly every thirty days, during the trading season to New Orleans, and carrying about one slave to the ton.
Mr. Miner makes the following statement in regard to the jail in Washington:
By papers furnished me by the keeper, it appears that there were sent to prison for safe keeping, that is, as is well understood, for sale and imprisoned as runaways,
Taken up as runaways.
Debtors and persons charged with criminal offences, of course, are not included in this statement, so that it would appear, in the last five years, more than four hundred and fifty persons had been confined in the public prison of the city-a prison under the control of congress, and regulated by its laws-for sale in the process of the slave trade. Such, said Mr. M., is not the intention for which the prison was erected. Pennsylvania, so far as she is concerned, and her means are appropriated to repair and keep up the prison, I am confident in saying, does not and never has intended that it should be used for this purpose.
Facilities for carrying on the trade in human flesh.
Establishments are made at several places in Maryland and Virginia, at which they are sold like cattle. These places of deposit are strongly built, and well supplied with iron thumb screws and gags, and ornamented with cowskins and other whips, oftentimes bloody. But the laws of the States permit the traffic, and it is suffered.-Nile's Register, vol. 35, p. 4.
The schooner Fell's Point, Capt. Stagg, has been seized at New Orleans for smuggling slaves into New Orleans from the West Indies, and the Captain, supercargo and crew, were cast into prison for trial. The supercargo is said to be an old offender, and possibly now is about to mee with some reward for his black crimes.- Niles' Register, Aug. 27, 1825.
In a very late work entitled "Transatlantic Sketches, comprising visits to the most interesting scenes in North and South America and the West Indies, with notes on negro Slavery and Canadian
Emigration, by Capt. J. E. Alexander, of the British Army, London, 1833," we find the following passage:
The most remarkable circumstance connected with slavery in America is the following. A planter in Louisiana, of forty years standing, assured me that there are a set of miscreants in the city of New Orleans, who are connected with the slave traders of Cuba, and who at certain periods proceed up the Mississippi as far as the Fourche mouth, which they descend in large row boats, and meet off the coast slave ships. These they relieve of their cargoes, and returning to the main stream of the Mississippi, they drop down it in covered flat bottomed boats or arks, and dispose of the negroes to those who want them.-Vol. 2. p. 26.
Sale of Americans at auction.
During my sojourn in the capital of Virginia, (United States,) I was a witness, for the first time in my life, of a scene as degrading to human nature, as productive of horror and disgust to the friends of humanity; the following advertisement having been inserted for several days successively in the news-papers:
Monday next, at 9 A. M. at public sale, the slaves whose names follow, all negroes of the first quality, namely: "Betsy, a negro woman, twenty-three years of age, with her child Cæsar, three years old; an excellent cook, washer and ironer; warranted healthy. Julia, a mulatto girl, aged thirteen, robust and active, a good field laborer; with the exception of a slight defect in the left eye, she is without fault. Augustus, a negro lad, six years of age, qualified to become an excellent domestic; without defect. The aforesaid slaves will be sold without reserve to the highest bidder, and the purchaser will be able to obtain credit for two or even four months, upon good security."
I was anxious to be present at such a strange commercial transaction, and I was there punctually. In the midst of various articles exposed for sale, such as pots, pans, beds, chairs, books, &c. &c., were seated the un
happy slaves, all crowded together, and all, as one would imagine, appropriately clothed. The poor mother, with her child in her arms, was the first object that drew my attention. The auctioneer had placed her in such a manner, that she and her infant should be the first object seen by those who entered the market. The customers, as they entered, cast their eyes upon the group so worthy of pity, to satisfy their curiosity, and examined them as if they were gazing at some chef d'œuvre produced by the chisel of Canova. I could not help shuddering with indignation, in considering the indif ference and gross rudeness with which these insensible men treat their slaves. Betsy was the only one who ap peared to feel all the rigors of her situation; her eyes remained constantly fixed upon her infant, and if she raised them for a moment, it was to obey the order of a purchaser, who wished, probably, to assure himself that they were strong enough to support labor by day and by night; but she had scarcely yielded to his injunction, ere they fell again upon the miserable infant which reposed on her bosum; she even replied to all their questions without raising her eyes to the person by whom she was addressed.
It was not the same, however, with the other slaves; they smiled at every jest, and their large white eyes, like brilliants fastened to their foreheads, sparkled with joy at the gay conversation and at the witty remarks of the gentlemen who had come hither with the intention of purchasing human beings at a fair price. But the moment of the sale approaching, and several persons were assembled the hall the crier invited them to come out, and upon a table placed before the door in the middle of the street, was exposed one of the slaves, who were for sale.
Betsy and her child had the honor of figuring first. The crier stood upon a chair placed near. I discovered in the crowd a dozen negroes at least, who passing at the time, were drawn by curiosity to approach, and appeared to follow with attention the progress of the sale; I could not forbear sympathizing with the unhappy beings, in reading upon their countenances the interest with which their companions in misery inspired