Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Slave Trade

Yesterday I posted a sketch drawn by George Alfred Townsend. He was a war correspondant during the Civil War. He also gave us a description of Port Tobacco which was posted on our blog last year. (see post of Tuesday, September 18, 2007)

In his description, he gives this statement: "Before the war, Port Tobacco was the seat of a tobacco aristocracy and a haunt of negro trades."

We know that residents of Port Tobacco had slaves. There is evidence in the court records, newspapers, and the census data. What we still lack is the archaeological evidence. After the Civil War, we know that the town became a mostly African American population.

Where were these trades or auctions taking place? It wouldn't be surprising that they were held on the courthouse steps as has been seen in other towns. But I am thinking of another possibility that happened in most port towns. In Annapolis, MD, there was a auctioning block right on the docks (right about where "ego alley" is today). Was there a similar area in Port Tobacco or down at Wharehouse Landing?

- Peter


Carol said...

I know it doesn't add any additional information, but here is the end of today's blog ---

There are more details in the report. And I really don’t feel competent (nor comfortable) in going into more detail. But the report does indicate that the two ossuaries (#2 and #3) in one area contained no copper nor any other “contact” material while the other two ossuaries (#1 and #4) in the other area did.

I plan to take another look at the “Port Tobacco” collection at the MSC. So until later.

Carol said...

Please ignore previous comment, I put it on the wrong article