Notes on Northern Slavery

byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
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Mar 22, 2017
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Midwest
Again you seem to ignore the fact that the slaves were grandfathered in

? I had brought up that very aspect of slavery in Illinois in an earlier post (#1348).

But ok let's explore it. As far as Illinois was concerned, and per your own cite of the clause, it was not slavery but "service by contract or indenture" and Illinois had surrendered oversight of it. The held person, when freed, was freed via terms of their contract or indenture, not by decree of an Illinois court (Illinois had banned slavery so wasn't issuing decrees of Emancipation). Illinois counties would record and file out-of-state decrees of emancipation, or file records of completion of indenture, just as it would file such papers for any other kind of contract.

We realize that if it can be sold that Illinois was legally practicing slavery -- rather than just documenting its status and meeting its obligations under the Fugitive Slave Law -- the hope is that folks will see the North as no less culpable than the South for maintaining slavery right up through the CW. Subtext: the war wasn't over slavery.

Of course that ignores all evidence of intent and scale. The practice of virtual slavery in the free Northern states cannot nearly be equated with the proactive, endemic and massive practice of chattel slavery in the South, the Confederacy literally founded on the precept of slavery.

That's not to excuse virtual slavery in the North, and no one has been. Tilting at windmills.
 
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Joined
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mo
? I had brought up that very aspect of slavery in Illinois in an earlier post (#1348).

But ok let's explore it. As far as Illinois was concerned, and per your own cite of the clause, it was not slavery but "service by contract or indenture" and Illinois had surrendered oversight of it. The held person, when freed, was freed via terms of their contract or indenture, not by decree of an Illinois court (Illinois had banned slavery so wasn't issuing decrees of Emancipation). Illinois counties would record and file out-of-state decrees of emancipation, or file records of completion of indenture, just as it would file such papers for any other kind of contract.

We realize that if it can be sold that Illinois was legally practicing slavery -- rather than just documenting its status and meeting its obligations under the Fugitive Slave Law -- the hope is that folks will see the North as no less culpable than the South for maintaining slavery right up through the CW. Subtext: the war wasn't over slavery.

Of course that ignores all evidence of intent and scale. The practice of virtual slavery in the free Northern states cannot nearly be equated with the proactive, endemic and massive practice of chattel slavery in the South, the Confederacy literally founded on the precept of slavery.

That's not to excuse virtual slavery in the North, and no one has been. Tilting at windmills.
Again your trying to make slavery somehow seem more palatable......the slaves grandfathered in were contracted for life...........contracted for life IS slavery

You can call a janitor a sanitation engineer if you wish hes still a janitor.......calling a slave an indentured servant for life, doesn't change he's a slave either.......

If you think the war wasnt over slavery, quit beating around the bush and state it, as your the one suggesting it, I haven't. Personally I see little relation to the 1818 Illinois constitution and the practice of slavery/indentured servitude in Illinois to the Civil War at all, and found it odd your suggesting some connection.
 
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byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 22, 2017
Location
Midwest
...Again your trying to make slavery somehow seem more palatable

Not once in any comment I've ever made on the forum have I tried to make "slavery somehow seem more palatable." (but we've all confused between posters occasionally, so no big deal).

...the slaves grandfathered in were contracted for life....contracted for life IS slavery...You can call a janitor a sanitation engineer if you wish hes still a janitor....calling a slave an indentured servant for life, doesn't change he's a slave either...

That's right, it's virtual slavery. And I sure agree that to the person held in bondage it made little difference. Still, Illinois had surrendered its oversight in such cases by conceding to the legal euphemism "indentured servitude." It's a cruel world. I won't sugar coat it, and nobody else here has either. Tilting at windmills.

At least Illinois courts would record letters of intent indicating an "indentured servant" was "freed," in the same way it recorded emancipations that became effective in another state. This was of great practical value to Illinois residents, who without that might otherwise run afoul of the Fugitive Slave Law.

If you think the war wasnt over slavery, quit beating around the bush and state it, as your the one suggesting it, I haven't.

Not once in any comment I've ever made on the forum have I expressed that I "think the war wasn't over slavery." (it's one thing to confuse between posters occasionally -- but more than once suggests intentional misrepresentation, which could be flagged, ok?)
 
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mo
Not once in any comment I've ever made on the forum have I tried to make "slavery somehow seem more palatable." (but we've all confused between posters occasionally, so no big deal).

Since we have been talking about slavery in Illinois the last few pages the only one who seems to wish to call slaves grandfathered in to continued slavery as something else has been you, the point of grandfathering something is to keep it the same basically. Or has said or suggested the "war wasn't over slavery" is you.... In the latter case you were the only one to suggest any relation between pre war slavery in Illinois and the Civil War....which I dont see the connection at all.

If anyone is tilting at windmills.......
 
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Rebforever

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Oct 26, 2012
I am strongly opposed to your use of the word “virtual”. That Is a cover developed by you over indentured used to smooth out Northern Slavery and I too hope it is flagged with my objection.

And I recommend the word virtual should be placed in the forbidden pile of time period use concerning slavery.
 

CSA Today

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Joined
Dec 3, 2011
Location
Laurinburg NC
? I had brought up that very aspect of slavery in Illinois in an earlier post (#1348).

But ok let's explore it. As far as Illinois was concerned, and per your own cite of the clause, it was not slavery but "service by contract or indenture" and Illinois had surrendered oversight of it. The held person, when freed, was freed via terms of their contract or indenture, not by decree of an Illinois court (Illinois had banned slavery so wasn't issuing decrees of Emancipation). Illinois counties would record and file out-of-state decrees of emancipation, or file records of completion of indenture, just as it would file such papers for any other kind of contract.

We realize that if it can be sold that Illinois was legally practicing slavery -- rather than just documenting its status and meeting its obligations under the Fugitive Slave Law -- the hope is that folks will see the North as no less culpable than the South for maintaining slavery right up through the CW. Subtext: the war wasn't over slavery.

Of course that ignores all evidence of intent and scale. The practice of virtual slavery in the free Northern states cannot nearly be equated with the proactive, endemic and massive practice of chattel slavery in the South, the Confederacy literally founded on the precept of slavery.

That's not to excuse virtual slavery in the North, and no one has been. Tilting at windmills.

Definition of virtual

1 : being such in essence or effect though not formally recognized or admitted

Hmm, sounds as bad to me.
 

byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 22, 2017
Location
Midwest
...the point of grandfathering something is to keep it the same basically...

...while calling it something else. The whole point here. It's virtual slavery -- not my depiction of it but simply the correct definition of Slavery by another name.

To recall the issue that started this rabbit hole in the discussion, it was simply to point out that Illinois wasn't emancipating people as late as 1863, as was claimed (once again, for the state to enact an emancipation would have required recognition that slavery was legal in the state. The state would recognize emancipations that were effected out-of-state, and enter them into county record, as late as 1863.

...you were the only one to suggest any relation between pre war slavery in Illinois and the Civil War....which I dont see the connection at all...

Then why were late emancipations in Illinois brought up? If you no consider that a connection, then we've arrived at about the same place: there was virtual slavery in Illinois, which was a sham. Hallelujia the forum works!
 

byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 22, 2017
Location
Midwest
I am strongly opposed to your use of the word “virtual”. That Is a cover developed by you over indentured used to smooth out Northern Slavery...I recommend the word virtual should be placed in the forbidden pile...

The term virtual slavery was not developed by me -- it's simply a commonly accepted, often used definition for Slavery by another name.

You will recall its use by Secessionists in the Antebellum, to paraphrase: "the squalor of immigrant employment in Northern cities amounted to virtual slavery," or "the North attempted to put white Southerners into virtual slavery."

And the adjective "virtual" has been, and will continue to be, used regularly in Civil War discussions, i.e. "the forage cap was a virtual food collection bag," or "the use of a smooth bore musket was virtually as effective as a rifle in most combat situations," or "indentured servitude was virtual slavery" etc. etc. etc.
 
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Rebforever

Lt. Colonel
Joined
Oct 26, 2012
The term virtual slavery was not developed by me -- it's simply a commonly accepted, often used definition for Slavery by another name.

You will recall its use by Secessionists in the Antebellum, to paraphrase: "the squalor of immigrant employment in Northern cities amounted to virtual slavery," or "the North attempted to put white Southerners into virtual slavery."

And the adjective "virtual" has been, and will continue to be, used regularly in Civil War discussions, i.e. "the forage cap was a virtual food collection bag," or "the use of a smooth bore musket was virtually as effective as a rifle in most combat situations," or "indentured servitude was virtual slavery" etc. etc. etc.
Can you give me a source and maybe I won’t make a mistake again.
 
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mo
...while calling it something else. The whole point here. It's virtual slavery -- not my depiction of it but simply the correct definition of Slavery by another name.

To recall the issue that started this rabbit hole in the discussion, it was simply to point out that Illinois wasn't emancipating people as late as 1863, as was claimed (once again, for the state to enact an emancipation would have required recognition that slavery was legal in the state. The state would recognize emancipations that were effected out-of-state, and enter them into county record, as late as 1863.



Then why were late emancipations in Illinois brought up? If you no consider that a connection, then we've arrived at about the same place: there was virtual slavery in Illinois, which was a sham. Hallelujia the forum works!

Odd while insisting slavery by any other name is still slavery, its you who continues to use euphemisms such as virtual slavery and indentured for people held for life and those born to them into bondage, so it seems your arguing to yourself to me on that. The rest of us are simply recognizing it for what you seemingly admit it was...…..slavery

It mentions the last one in 1863 because it was simply the last one..... its saying emancipations continued from Illinois residents both after the 1818 constitution and the 1848 constitution.......the point was Illinois slavery and emancipations had continued not just because of the grandfather clause, but because of the provision that all of the children born to those grandfathered, were also born into bondage......and could be held to age before requiring emancipation

If you somehow think it was linking Illinois slavery post 1818 and 1848 constitutions to the CW or cause of the CW, think you veered off and are barking up the wrong tree personally. I thought we were discussing how slavery and emancipations continued past the 2 constitutions, and the loopholes they had made to allow it to do so. The point I was making was Illinois while saying it was illegal, indeed did allow it to continue for some time, as the last recorded emancipation was 1863, another 45 years past the 1818 constitution. Clearly to show how long it continued, one has to know when the last one was.... Not that it had anything to with the cause of the CW or what the CW was about......…so no we haven't arrived in the same place at all, as I dont think Illinois slavery during the territorial days , or post 1818 constitution and then post 1848 had anything to with the ACW or its cause at all........It is however Illinois history, so would also be part of the history of slavery in northern states (which is the OP)......and the United States.
 
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byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 22, 2017
Location
Midwest
Can you give me a source and maybe I won’t make a mistake again.

This is not quite the place to digress on common English usage, but here's a few random examples which at least somewhat relate to the OP:

“The courts of Illinois for years permitted long-term indentures which were virtual slavery” - Slavery in Missouri, 1804-1865, 1914 Harrison Trexter

“Lincoln, on the other hand, regarded slavery as a dynamic, expansionist institution, hungry for new territory. He argued that if Northerners allowed slavery to spread unchecked, slave owners would make slavery a national institution and would reduce all laborers, white as well as black, to a state of virtual slavery.” - Lincoln's Stands in the 1858 Illinois Senate Campaign, Digital History ID 366 digitalhistory.uh.edu

“In an explosive work of investigative history that just won the Pulitzer Prize, a white son of Mississippi, Douglas Blackmon, has uncovered incredible virtual slavery that went on for decades after the Civil War.” - Slavery by Another Name June 3, 2009, wbur.org

and on general use of the adjective:

“You can use virtual to indicate that something is so nearly true that for most purposes it can be regarded as being true. [i.e.]The men say that they were held in virtual slavery and paid nothing for their work.” - Virtual definition and meaning / Collins English Dictionary

btw you weren't "mistaken" in taking offense at the term. You just had a different understanding of it. One reason discussions here are useful.
 
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byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 22, 2017
Location
Midwest
Definition of virtual...1 : being such in essence or effect though not formally recognized or admitted ...merriam-webster.com/dictionary/virtual...Hmm, sounds as bad to me.

Me too. Calling something by another name just to side-step the legality of it is not playing nice. Illinois and other Northern states side-stepped their own laws barring slavery with an under-the-table wink-and-a-nod that allowed a bit of virtual slavery to continue. At the same time state courts could avoid having to decree emancipations, which would be an admission that legal slavery was still allowed in the state in the first place.
 

byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 22, 2017
Location
Midwest
Reb, I think he means slavery by another name is not as bad as slavery.

Or, he meant that virtual slavery was just as bad as slavery to those held by it, he having mentioned that several times.

The extent of Antebellum slavery in the North - virtual slavery - was nowhere near the extent of slavery in the Antebellum South. The Confederacy was literally (not even virtually) founded on chattel slavery. Can't be equated.
 

byron ed

2nd Lieutenant
Joined
Mar 22, 2017
Location
Midwest
...its you who continues to use euphemisms...your arguing to yourself to me ...you seemingly admit it was...you somehow think it was linking Illinois slavery...you veered off and are barking up the wrong tree personally...

(Personal diatribes; word storms etc. distract from the topic. Nobody cares if you or I "win."

Let's review: Illinois courts did not perform emancipations in 1863, hadn't for decades. Illinois recorded out-of-state or private emancipations on behalf of Illinois residents, as late as 1863.

Nobody here has denied that the sorts of virtual slavery that remained after legal slavery was banned in the North were just as bad for the held person as anything in the South.

And yet the scale cannot be equated. Chattel slavery was endemic in the South and middle South, the "peculiar institution" as Southerners themselves referred to it. The Confederacy was literally (not even virtually) founded on keeping and expanding slavery, and the Confederacy fought in defense of it.

It was not isolated incidents of indentured servitude or any other sort of virtual slavery or criminal restraint in Illinois or any other free state that triggered the war. Those issues weren't significant enough that most folks, even politicians at the time, even cared about it.
 
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CSA Today

Brev. Brig. Gen'l
Joined
Dec 3, 2011
Location
Laurinburg NC
Or, he meant that virtual slavery was just as bad as slavery to those held by it, he having mentioned that several times.

The extent of Antebellum slavery in the North - virtual slavery - was nowhere near the extent of slavery in the Antebellum South. The Confederacy was literally (not even virtually) founded on chattel slavery. Can't be equated.

What do you reckon virtual slaves in the North thought of that?
 
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Location
mo
(Personal diatribes; word storms etc. distract from the topic. Nobody cares if you or I "win."

Let's review: Illinois courts did not perform emancipations in 1863, hadn't for decades. Illinois recorded out-of-state emancipations on behalf of Illinois residents, as late as 1863.

Nobody here has denied that the sorts of virtual slavery that remained after legal slavery was banned in the North were just as bad for the held person as anything in the South.

And yet the scale cannot be equated. Chattel slavery was endemic in the South and middle South, the "peculiar institution" as Southerners themselves referred to it. The Confederacy was literally (not even virtually) founded on keeping and expanding slavery, and the Confederacy fought in defense of it.

It was not isolated incidents of indentured servitude or any other sort of virtual slavery or criminal restraint in Illinois or any other free state that triggered the war. Those issues weren't significant enough that most folks, even politicians at the time, even cared about it.
No one has provided any evidence the 1863 emancipation was out of state, thats an assumption of yours...we do know the children of your "virtual slaves" continued to require being emancipated upon coming of age, indeed from Illinois residents


"And yet the scale cannot be equated" while I agree, it seems a bit of a red herring as no one has suggested the scale was the same..... again the discussion was how Illinois allowed loopholes to allow slavery to continue for some time after saying it was illegal

"it was not isolated incidents of indentured servitude or any other sort of virtual slavery or criminal restraint in Illinois or any other free state that triggered the war" I have agreed multiple times and have never said it did......

You seem to wish to counter statements that no one has made, so the only one who has threw out any suggestion the scale was the same, or the war wasnt about slavery has been you...…its as if your arguing with yourself, so quit involving me in these things you know I never said at all, to put them in responses to me at best seems disingenuous, as I never raised them at all.
 
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CLuckJD

Private
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Nov 19, 2018
Location
MS, USA
Slavery was a (sic) morally wrong then as it was in 1860, but yet there was no large outcry in the North at that time, as their economy depended on it,
Amen! Bottom line told in cold, hard truth that still does and will forever hold true. Folks can find some way to justify the worst kind of dead wrong evils as long as they profit therefrom. Which is also why Northerners could no longer stay silent amid southern proslavery outcry at prospect of vast wealth lost fast. Same exact scenario would play out in reverse if Northerners stood to gain more than old south slaveocrats.
 
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