Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant?

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#81
It seems that modern politics is running underneath most discussions concerning slavery. If blacks can own black slaves, it really amounts to nothing of importance to many since no modern day "sin" of racism is present. (I imagine whites owning white slaves falls in the same category.) But whites owning black slaves is pushed into a different category. Isn't racism a part of modern politics that should be left out of all discussions implied or not?
Not sure I follow your point. Of course there was racism back then. It was 19th century politics. It's true that the word racism does not come into common usage until the 20th century, but it existed before then.

Racism consists of beliefs and behaviors under which one "race" of people is given, or should be given, rights, privileges, and opportunities that are denied to another race. That was certainly true in the beliefs and behaviors of many people in the 19th century. It is true that such beliefs were not universally seen in a pejorative fashion, versus today, where they usually are seen as pejorative.

The question was asked, is it significant that pre-Civil War free blacks owned slaves? The number of black slave owners was so small that it had no significant impact on the economic, political, or social environment of the 19th century that I can see, or that has been proven.

- Alan
 
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Viper21

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#82
The question was asked, is it significant that pre-Civil War free blacks owned slaves? The number of black slave owners was so small that it had no significant impact on the economic, political, or social environment of the 19th century that I can see, or that has been proven.

- Alan
Looking at @jgoodguy 's charts on post #36, it looks like, of the Black Slave owners, right at 6% of them owned 10 or more slaves.
(54 + 172)/3776 = 5.99%

Do you know what % of White slave owners owned 10 or more slaves...?

Can we agree that owning 10 or more slaves was not out of benevolence, & was most likely, an enterprise, or financial endeavor, regardless of the race of the owner..?
 
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#83
I said this, which you quoted:

The number of black slave owners was so small that it had no significant impact on the economic, political, or social environment of the 19th century that I can see, or that has been proven.
YOu replied with this:

Looking at @jgoodguy 's charts on post #36, it looks like, of the Black Slave owners, right at 6% of them owned 10 or more slaves.
(54 + 172)/3776 = 5.99%

Do you know what % of White slave owners owned 10 or more slaves...?

Can we agree that owning 10 or more slaves was not out of benevolence, & was most likely, an enterprise, or financial endeavor, regardless of the race of the owner..?
Help me to understand: what in my post prompted you to ask the question that you did? It seems that I'm being asked something that has nothing to do with what I posted.

EDIT: I ask this with an eye on the thread title, which is "Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant?."

- Alan
 
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Viper21

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#84
Help me to understand: what in my post prompted you to ask the question that you did? It seems that I'm being asked something that has nothing to do with what I posted.

EDIT: I ask this with an eye on the thread title, which is "Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant?."

- Alan
I thought this thread was a discussion about, "Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant?."

Isn't asking questions, & learning more, the whole purpose of all discussion..? With no disrespect intended, I bolded the part of your post that interested me, & prompted the questions that I asked.

I figured you would know the answer to my first question (I couldn't find the info quickly), & I assumed we could agree on the latter. Although, to be sure, I posed it as a question, instead of a statement.

For reference, I'll quote my post again. I would prefer to not assume your responses.

Looking at @jgoodguy 's charts on post #36, it looks like, of the Black Slave owners, right at 6% of them owned 10 or more slaves.
(54 + 172)/3776 = 5.99%

Do you know what % of White slave owners owned 10 or more slaves...?

Can we agree that owning 10 or more slaves was not out of benevolence, & was most likely, an enterprise, or financial endeavor, regardless of the race of the owner..?
 
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#86
I thought this thread was a discussion about, "Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant?."

Isn't asking questions, & learning more, the whole purpose of all discussion..? With no disrespect intended, I bolded the part of your post that interested me, & prompted the questions that I asked.

I figured you would know the answer to my first question (I couldn't find the info quickly), & I assumed we could agree on the latter. Although, to be sure, I posed it as a question, instead of a statement.

For reference, I'll quote my post again. I would prefer to not assume your responses.
My comment was that "The number of black slave owners was so small that it had no significant impact on the economic, political, or social environment of the 19th century that I can see, or that has been proven." I'm trying to figure out, how are your questions related to that? If you're saying you agree or disagree, I'm not sure that I get that.

Sometimes I feel that I am being asked things that are just not relevant to the points I've made.

- Alan
 

byron ed

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#87
...If blacks can own black slaves, it really amounts to nothing of importance to many since no modern day "sin" of racism is present. (I imagine whites owning white slaves falls in the same category.)
Hold on there: "If blacks can own black slaves" implies Antebellum law is still in force. It isn't. There's no "if." At one time blacks (or any other hue of free resident) could own black slaves, which is much of importance to our study of it.

But whites owning black slaves is pushed into a different category.
Not by anybody here, though inventing it would serve the purpose of having something to rail against.

Isn't racism a part of modern politics that should be left out of all discussions implied or not?
The term "racism" is a modernism, so yes it should be left out. There are period terms for the same thing if we need to cite them.
 
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Viper21

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#89
My comment was that "The number of black slave owners was so small that it had no significant impact on the economic, political, or social environment of the 19th century that I can see, or that has been proven." I'm trying to figure out, how are your questions related to that? If you're saying you agree or disagree, I'm not sure that I get that.

Sometimes I feel that I am being asked things that are just not relevant to the points I've made.

- Alan
So..... no answer to my questions..? I apologize if my questions are somehow offensive, or not worth the dignity of answering.

You made a statement. I looked at some data offered by JGG. It sparked other questions. Ones that may have (in my mind) been relevant to the "significance" of the topic.

I tried...
 

jgoodguy

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#90
My comment was that "The number of black slave owners was so small that it had no significant impact on the economic, political, or social environment of the 19th century that I can see, or that has been proven." I'm trying to figure out, how are your questions related to that? If you're saying you agree or disagree, I'm not sure that I get that.

Sometimes I feel that I am being asked things that are just not relevant to the points I've made.

- Alan
Perhaps to wear folks down by extraneous questions.
 

jgoodguy

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#92
So..... no answer to my questions..? I apologize if my questions are somehow offensive, or not worth the dignity of answering.

You made a statement. I looked at some data offered by JGG. It sparked other questions. Ones that may have (in my mind) been relevant to the "significance" of the topic.

I tried...
If your case is no one will provide you with data, it is not a strong case.
 
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#93
So..... no answer to my questions..? I apologize if my questions are somehow offensive, or not worth the dignity of answering.

You made a statement. I looked at some data offered by JGG. It sparked other questions. Ones that may have (in my mind) been relevant to the "significance" of the topic.

I tried...
I'm not trying to give you a hard time.

I know the mods don't like us to have meta-discussions, ie, discussions about a discussion. But briefly: we have had discussions about black slave owners before. For reasons I won't go into as they are off-topic, I have found them unsatisfactory. I will leave it at that.

The OP starts with @wbull1 asking: Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant? He started the first post with this:
In other discussion groups I've seen discussions of the significance of the fact that before the Civil War some free blacks owned black slaves. To me the numbers involved are so small it seems insignificant, but maybe I'm missing something. What is your reaction?
I think he asked a good question, and thought the way he started the thread was a good way to approach the subject.

My reaction was:

The number of black slave owners was so small that it had no significant impact on the economic, political, or social environment of the 19th century that I can see, or that has been proven.
I am desirous of having a conversation about the significance of black slave ownership. I am not desirous of a conversation that takes us off that path, because I have seen other threads go off the rails. Your question is not offensive or undignified, at all. I'm just saying, I really really want to get to the question at hand.

Now, if you want to put your question to me within the context of the question (Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant?) and the post I made, then I will be more than happy to engage in that. This isn't hard. Do you or do you not believe that that the fact that there were black slave owners is significant? Why or why not? I just don't want to get into other stuff on this thread.

- Alan
 

jgoodguy

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#94
I'm not trying to give you a hard time.

I know the mods don't like us to have meta-discussions, ie, discussions about a discussion. But briefly: we have had discussions about black slave owners before. For reasons I won't go into as they are off-topic, I have found them unsatisfactory. I will leave it at that.

The OP starts with @wbull1 asking: Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant? He started the first post with this:


I think he asked a good question, and thought the way he started the thread was a good way to approach the subject.

My reaction was:



I am desirous of having a conversation about the significance of black slave ownership. I am not desirous of a conversation that takes us off that path, because I have seen other threads go off the rails. Your question is not offensive or undignified, at all. I'm just saying, I really really want to get to the question at hand.

Now, if you want to put your question to me within the context of the question (Pre-Civil War Free Blacks Owned Slaves. Is that significant?) and the post I made, then I will be more than happy to engage in that. This isn't hard. Do you or do you not believe that that the fact that there were black slave owners is significant? Why or why not? I just don't want to get into other stuff on this thread.

- Alan
All staff has limited patience with personal bickering.
 
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#95
Can we agree that owning 10 or more slaves was not out of benevolence, & was most likely, an enterprise, or financial endeavor, regardless of the race of the owner..?
I tend to agree. Slavery, in the end, was a means to make money. It cost money to invest in the system, and that was largely done with the expectation of making a return on the investment. A larger group of slaves suggests ownership with goals beyond that of protecting immediate family.

In any case, if a black slave owner had enough money to buy relatives, why would he buy them and keep them enslaved? Why not buy and free them?
 

jgoodguy

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#96
Emancipators, Protectors, and Anomalies: Free Black Slaveowners in Virginia.

The case of "Pharoah Sheppard, FN" (Free Negro), who received a​
deed for a bondsman in December 1810, exemplifies both the behavior of​
blacks on their own behalf and the degree of domination exercised by​
whites. In accepting ownership of a fellow Afro-Virginian, Sheppard, a​
Henrico County farm worker and overseer, provided for his future at the​
same time that he acknowledged the power of slaveholders to determine​
his fate and that of his son. For it was his son, also named Pnaroah,​
whom he owned and soon freed, but only through a chain of circumstances​
that marked Pharoah Sheppard the father as exceptional. He had​
gained his freedom by state action as a reward for informing authorities​
of the slave Gabriel's plot to seek freedom through rebellion in 1800.​
Mosby Sheppard, then Pharoah's owner, had received compensation from​
the commonwealth and had later bought the younger Pharoah from an​
Albemarle County man in order to give him to the elder Pharoah.​
Pharoah escaped slavery by helping to prevent a slave revolt; he supported​
himself while free by serving as an overseer of slaves; and he gained his​
son's freedom only by acknowledging his bondage. 4​
4 Mosby Sheppard Small Account Book, 1802, Mosby Sheppard Account Book, 1794-1812, pp. 52, 60, 70,
Financial Records of Pharoah Sheppard, 1804-8, Box B, Meadow Farm Museum, Henrico Co., Va. ; Petition
of Pharoah Sheppard, 14 Dec. 1810, Richmond Legislative Petitions, 1810-12; Gerald W . Mullin, Flight and
Rebellion: Slave Resistance in Eighteenth-Century Virginia (New York, 1972), pp. 152-53; Virginius Dabney,
Richmond: The Story of a City (Garden City, N .Y. , 1976), p. 55 ; Jackson , Free Negro lAbor and Property, pp.
203-4. In Slavery and Social Death, pp. 209-19, Orlando Patterson discusses the "debt" emancipators believed
freedmen owed to them.
 

jgoodguy

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#97
I tend to agree. Slavery, in the end, was a means to make money. It cost money to invest in the system, and that was largely done with the expectation of making a return on the investment. A larger group of slaves suggests ownership with goals beyond that of protecting immediate family.

In any case, if a black slave owner had enough money to buy relatives, why would he buy them and keep them enslaved? Why not buy and free them?
Why ask questions instead of researching.
 

jgoodguy

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#99
Since when has asking questions ruffled feathers..? In my time here, I've always been under the impression, asking questions was not only, a good thing but, kind of the whole point of discussion :O o: When did this change..? :eek:
Asking questions is free, research is priceless.
 
In any case, if a black slave owner had enough money to buy relatives, why would he buy them and keep them enslaved? Why not buy and free them?
Ira Berlin in his book Slaves Without Masters has a list of the state manumission laws. Roughly, after 1830 in some instances and 1850 in others, the states of Kentucky, Arkansas, Missouri, and Delaware did not prohibit manumission by owners; no special request to the legislature or the courts was required. Alabama, Louisiana, North Carolina (until 1861), and Tennessee required the slave owner to petition the court. South Carolina required a petition to the legislature while Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi did not allow manumission. Texas allowed manumission as long as it was done outside of the state while Maryland and Virginia's manumitted slaves were required to leave the state.
 



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