Slave Codes of Pennsylvania, 1857



Slave codes of Pennsylvania.

The export of Indian slaves from Carolina had been a subject of complaint in Pennsylvania. The importation of Indian slaves into that province, except such as had been a year domiciled in the family of the importer, had been prohibited, in 1705, by an act especially referring to this Carolina traffic, "as having given our neighboring Indians of this province some umbrage for suspicion and dissatisfaction." A new act, in 1712, "to prevent the importation of negroes and slaves," alleging plots and insurrections, and referring in terms to a recent plot in New York, imposed a prohibitory duty of 20 pounds upon all negroes and Indians brought into the province by land, or water, a drawback to be allowed in case of reexportation within twenty days.

Sale of Native Indian a Native American Indian is Sold as a Slave

Sale of Native Indian a Native American Indian is Sold as a Slave
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Indulgence was also to be granted for a longer time, not exceeding six months, "to all gentlemen and strangers traveling in this province who may have negro or Indian slaves to attend them, not exceeding two for one person." Runaways from the neighboring provinces, if taken back within twenty days after identification, were to be free of duty; otherwise, or if not claimed within twelve months, they were to be sold, and the proceeds paid into the treasury, the owner being entitled only to what remained after paying the duty and expenses.

Very large powers were given to the collector to break all doors, and seize and sell all slaves suspected to be concealed with intent to evade the duty. This act, however, within a few months after its passage, was disallowed and repealed by the queen.

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