Primary Documents: Slavery and Slave Culture General News Items

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The following bibliographic sources were used in JUBA's research. Specific bibliographic sources are also linked from individual person, event, venue and troupe pages.

The Bibliography contains all sources used to compile the Early Blackface Minstrelsy in Britain Database. At this stage of our data entry, most documentation you will find here will be from nineteenth century daily and weekly British journals, searched by our Research Participants; all such entries are linked to one or more of the database entries: Event, Individual, Troupe, Venue, Documentation.

Bell's Life in London February 2, 1851: 1:2.
Info in Record: Notice of a racing horse for sale. The dam of the animal in question is listed as “by Mulatto”.
Bell's Life in London February 25, 1849: 2:1.
Info in Record: Digest of a case in which Maryland slaves, freed by their owner’s will, were required to pay legacy duty on their own value.
Bell's Life in London February 2, 1851: 4;1.
Info in Record: Piece about the Newmarket Craven Meeting, 1851 (Horse Races). Mentions an unnamed colt whose mother was called “by Mulatto out of Lunacy”
Bell's Life in London February 2, 1851: 4:1.
Info in Record: Piece about the Epsom Spring Meeting, 1851 (Horse Races). Mentions an unnamed colt whose mother was called “by Mulatto out of Lunacy”
Bell's Life in London February 2, 1851: 4:2.
Bell's Life in London February 2, 1851: 4:2.
Info in Record: Piece entitled “Horses in Training: At Greenwood”. Mentions horses called “The Nigger” and “Squaw”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 1:3.
Info in Record: Advertisement listing the sale of a hunting colt whose mother was called “Mulatto”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 1:3.
Info in Record: Piece about a Stallion named “The Hydra”, who sired a horse called “Mark Tapley”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 3:1.
Info in Record: News item about a Slave named Henry Long who was sold in Richmond, VA for $750, “with a condition that he is to be taken south only.”
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 4:3.
Info in Record: Listing of horses taking part in the upcoming Newmarket Craven Meeting. Includes a horse called “Dromedary”, whose mother was named “Mulatto out of Lunacy”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 4:3.
Info in Record: Listing of horses taking part in the upcoming Epsom Spring Handicap. Includes a horse called “Old Dan Tucker” and one called “Dromedary”, whose mother was named “Mulatto out of Lunacy”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 4:3.
Info in Record: A piece headed “nominations for the City and Suburban Handicap”. Listed horses include “The Moor, 6 yrs” and “Mark Tapley, 4 yrs”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 5:1.
Info in Record: Listing of Horses in Training at Richmond. Includes “Negress, 2 yrs”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 5:2.
Info in Record: Listing of Horses participating in the Bath and Somerset County Meeting. Includes “Mark Tapley, 4 yrs”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 5:2.
Info in Record: Listing of Horses participating in the Warwick and Leamington Spring Meeting. Includes “Mark Tapley, 4 yrs”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 5:4.
Info in Record: Listing of Horses participating in the Doncaster Spring Meeting. Includes “Mark Tapley, 4 yrs”.
Bell's Life in London February 9, 1851: 5:4.
Info in Record: Listing of dogs participating in the Doncaster Meeting. Includes “Mr. Winder’s bk d Mark Tapley”.
Bell's Life in London February 16, 1851: 1:3.
Info in Record: Brief description of a Stallion called “The Hydra”, which notes that he was the sire of “Mark Tapley”.
Bell’s Life in London March 14, 1847: 7:5.
Info in Record: feature story about the finding of a corpse of “a dead piccaninie, or young Negro” in a barrel by a shopkeeper in Kirriensuir.
Bell’s Life in London September 5, 1847: 6:4.
Info in Record: “ “A Race with an Indian”: Feature story retrieved from an “American paper” about “the ‘fast’ Indian John Steeprock” who “on Saturday last” was paid by some European tourists and Americans to raise “two horse team and wagon”
Bell’s Life in London November 28, 1847: 5:4.
Info in Record: News retrieved from “The New Orleans Picayune” about the death of “Mr. Julien Poydras, the owner of six large plantations” (notes what is to be done with his slaves)
Bristol Gazette October 7, 1852: Referenced in University of Bristol, Barker Collection.
Info in Record: Notice detailing the increasing popularity of Uncle Tom’s Cabin (“5000 copies have been disposed of in Bristol alone”)
Era (London) November 4, 1849: 7:2.
Info in Record: Account of the attempted escape of eight slaves in Hawesville, Kentucky.
Era (London) June 8, 1845: 3:1.
Info in Record: poem in which “Robert Rose, the Bard of Color” depicts “the phases of the Fancy Ball as they presented themselves to the ‘Man of Color.’”
Era (London) June 21, 1846: 3:1.
Info in Record: racial joke using minstrel dialect
Era (London) June 28, 1846: 2:4.
Info in Record: a racial joke entitled “A Black Joke” – “Never shake hands with niggers,’ said a Yankee to an Englishman. “Why not!” inquired John Bull. “Why not!” said Jonathan, “don’t you know the critters all-us sweat marking ink?”
Era (London) June 28, 1846: 4:4.
Info in Record: Report of South American newspaper publishing advertisement selling slaves
Era (London) August 23, 1846: 13:4.
Info in Record: report of freed slaves fundraising in order to buy back their minister.
Era (London) November 18, 1849: 10:3.
Info in Record: A piece – taken from “Sir. J. Alexander’s ‘Acadie’” – about “tricks played upon negroes” in New Brunswick.
Era (London) January 21, 1844: 8:3.
div class="noteheading">Info in Record: Description of Iowa Indians arriving in Washington: “Eighteen Indians of the Iowa tribe; three chiefs, eight braves, two interpreters, and five squaws and papooses have arrived at Washington on business connected with their tribe.”
Era (London) November 18, 1849: 10:3.
Info in Record: A piece – written in minstrel dialect – that purports to repeat a “dandy black” from Boston’s description of a potato.
Era (London) March 24, 1850: 8:3.
Info in Record: editorial on ineffectual British opposition to the slave-trade—they should be boycotting slave-grown products, not going to war against slave ships
Era (London) December 2, 1849: 10:1.
Info in Record: A piece recounting the verdict at an inquest following the death of “a female slave, whipped to death by her master” (in Boston).
Era (London) August 11, 1850: 7:4.
Info in Record: joke in Jim Crow dialect
Era (London) December 23, 1849: 10:3.
Info in Record: A quotation from “Sir J. Alexander’s ‘Acadie’”, which purports to describe the “negro way of fighting”.
Era (London) August 11, 1850: 9:3.
Info in Record: editorial on slave-labour in factories; argues against factory nurseries that bring up new labourers
Era (London) February 2, 1851: 7:1.
Info in Record: Other: other (Article entitled “Another of the Beauties of American Slavery” about a Rev. J. McBride of North Carolina who was indicted for giving a young girl a copy of the Ten Commandments. )
Era (London) March 17, 1844: 3:4.
div class="noteheading">Info in Record: Racial anecdote: “NEGRO ELOQUENCE.— A “dandy black” stepped into a provision store in this city recently, to buy some potatoes…— (Boston Notion)”
Era (London) February 23, 1851: 13:4.
Info in Record: Other: other (Anecdote about a beggar decapitated by a Douree’s sword – “The very principle upon which gentlemen in England shoot their old pet-dogs and horses, and some tribes of Indians eat their grey-headed fathers and mothers.”)
Era (London) March 17, 1844: 3:4.
div class="noteheading">Info in Record: Newspaper excerpt: “BLESSINGS OF FREEDOM.— A colored man some time since, went to Washington, the capital of that country which boasts that all men are born free and independent;… —Toronto Herald”
Era (London) August 10, 1851: 1:4.
Info in Record: List of popular books for order by A. Dumas, Victor Hugo and others includes The Black Mendicant and The Galley Slave.
Era (London) March 17, 1844: 12:4.
div class="noteheading">Info in Record: Description of American Indians in a sporting event: “SPORTING IN AMERICA. He was a tall, well-shaped fellow, with that wild light peculiar to the Indians of the mountains in his eye,…”
Era (London) December 14, 1851: 3:4.
Info in Record: Advertisement listing the sale of a horse named “The Nigger”
Era (London) April 14, 1844: 2:3.
Info in Record: Story about a black cook fishing catfish: “FUN AT THE FALLS OF OHIO.— … .Curiosity became excited in woolly’s head to find out ‘what de debble dar on de hook’ to hold it so.”
Era (London) January 19, 1851: 7:1.
Info in Record: Piece in the “Our Carpet Bag” section, which contains the following: “There is a plantation for sale in Louisiana the advertisement stating it to be just below the Devil’s Elbow”.
Era (London) March 30, 1851: 2:2.
Info in Record: Story about “a coloured brother” from the U.S. attending a meeting of the “Shakspere Lodge”. Suggests that the visitor “suffered great privation and cruelty” during his passage to England.
Era (London) June 2, 1844: 2:4.
Info in Record: News article about clashes in Philadelphia between Native American and Irish factions
Era (London) April 27, 1851: 12:4.
Info in Record: Article stating that Banvard’s Panorama of the Mississippi is currently being exhibited in Lincolnshire. Notes that mention of a false copy of the panorama was displayed the previous autumn in the county by “a man who formerly headed a band of Negro singers”)
Era (London) July 28, 1844: 6:1.
Info in Record: Literature Review (of Mrs. Postans’ book about Indian society)
Era (London) May 4, 1851: 9:2.
Info in Record: News article discussing American Slavery. Notes that there are “nearly 3 million ‘darkies’ in the States”, and that the current situation might lead to trouble down the road.
Era (London) August 4, 1844: 3:1.
Info in Record: News article about Natives plundering and burning two sea vessels and massacring the crews
Era (London) May 18, 1851: 8:4.
Info in Record: A piece entitled “The Slave Trade”, which provides a brief discussion of Brazil and Africa.
Era (London) January 19, 1851: 3:2.
Info in Record: Mention of a favorite horse in Sussex’s team last year, named “Nigger”.
Era (London) June 22, 1851: 12:3.
Info in Record: An article which criticizes American racism (as indicated by the existence of an New York newspaper entitled “the White Man’s Newspaper”), and suggests that the English hold “all men, whatever their colour, to be equal before both God and man”.
Era (London) January 19, 1851: 5:3.
Info in Record: Report on negotiations for a fight between Roberts and Watson; Watson referred to as “the Nigger”.
Era (London) January 19, 1851: 8:4.
Info in Record: Article on residents of Hobart Town Australia arguing against the admittance of more convicts. Reporter compares their protest (as descendants of convicts themselves) to “a mulatto expressing his disgust at the presence of a ‘nigger’ in a room.”
Era (London) August 24, 1851: 10:4.
Info in Record: Joke (written in minstrel dialect) about “a negro [who] was brought up before the Mayor of Philadelphia […] for stealing chickens.”
Era (London) October 6, 1844: 2:4.
Info in Record: Piece describing a black boy in Alabama who has an extraordinary gift for numbers
Era (London) September 7, 1851: 15:2.
Info in Record: Article describing the “Capture and Execution of Fifty-two of the Members of the New Orleans Expedition”. The author notes the “negroes, slaves and free” who were present at the execution.
Era (London) January 2, 1848: 10:3.
“A Native Convert”. Record of conversation between the author and “Tom” with phonetic “black speak”
Era (London) February 11, 1849: 8:2.
Info in Record: A piece about slavery in the U.S. in the “Answers to Correspondents” section. The text reads as follows: “PHIL- You are in error. The Slavery Question has yet to be fought in the United States of America, and perchance it may shake the Union to its centre, for its opponents are gaining strength rapidly, whilst its advocates are becoming rabid with rage.” The author then goes on to quote an advertisement about a runaway slave from a “recent American paper”.
Era (London) October 6, 1844: 2:4.
Info in Record: A derogatory reference to race: ““I shall retire in dis gust,” as the nigger said to the hurricane.”
Era (London) October 5, 1851: 7:4.
Info in Record: Racist Joke entitled “Sambo” in the “Our Carpet Bag” section. Reads as follows: “Sambo, where did the Mexicans suffer the most? – ‘Why, in de feet’ (defeat)”.
Era (London) January 16, 1848: 8:1-2.
Info in Record: Discussion of slavery and the abolition movement within the economic context of the production of sugar cane.
Era (London) January 10, 1847: 7:1.
Info in Record: A brief piece entitled “One Nigger equal to Two Englishmen”
Era (London) December 1, 1844 : 3:3.
Info in Record: A derogatory and racist song entitled “THE YANKEE BOATSWAIN’S SONG. TO THE AMERICAN SLAVE NAVY.” Selection of lyrics: “Heave away, my tight niggers, my jolly brisk blacks,— Ain’t there tar in your very complexion?—”…
Era (London) October 12, 1851: 13:3.
Info in Record: Account of a robbery perpetrated by four women, one of whom was “a woman of colour” known as “Black Jenny”.
Era (London) April 9, 1848: 10:4.
Info in Record: Argument for the Abolition movement with one black man Charles, slave to David Adams, as example.
Era (London) March 17, 1844: 3:1-2.
Info in Record: Description of a book entitled ‘The Prairie Bird’ (by C.A. Murray), which provides “an interesting account of the manners and customs of the North American Indians.
Era (London) May 7, 1847: 10:2.
Info in Record: Joke about a "sable knight of the lather and brush"; written in minstrel dialect.
Era (London) November 2, 1851: 2:1.
Info in Record: Extract from “American Scenes and Christian Slavery”, which describes a slave sale.
Era (London) July 1, 1849: 10:3.
Info in Record: Brief piece about a lawyer getting a “bed” in the American South.
Era (London June 25, 1848: 10:4.
Info in Record: “Negro boy joke in dialect”
Era (London) December 21, 1851: 9:3.
Info in Record: An article entitled “The President’s Message – Reviewed”, which makes mention of “Fugitive Slave Law” in the U.S.
Era (London) July 8, 1849: 7:1.
Info in Record: An account (taken from an American paper) of a slave ship “which had been captured by Her Britannic Majesty’s sloop Philomel on the west coast of Africa”.
Era (London) July 30, 1848: 10:4.
Info in Record: “Our Carpet Bag”: A joke entitled “An Intelligent Negro”.
Era (London) December 21, 1851: 15:2.
Info in Record: A piece describing a “New Phase to the Fugitive Slave-Law” in the American South.
Era (London) July 22, 1849: 13:2.
Info in Record: Reprinting of a conundrum from a New York Paper, which is written in “minstrel dialect”.
Era (London September 3, 1848: 9:4, 10:1-2.
Info in Record: 2.5 columns dedicated to the call for free-grown sugar in an effort to end "the hateful trade." Of interest: Detailed description of inhumane conditions on slavers (boats) for Africans.
Era (London) December 28, 1851: 6:3.
Info in Record: News article about the sinking of a ship called the Tyendenaga en route from Quebec to London. Two “coloured” men (including the ship’s cook) are listed amongst the deceased.
Era (London) January 5, 1845: 4:1.
Info in Record: Editorial about the attempted annexation of Texas by the US. Objects to the US annexing Texas as ‘the Slave Trade would be encouraged there to an unlimited extent, and the dollar loving souls of the Americans would gloat alike in profits of land and human blood.”
Era (London) August 5, 1849: 5:3.
Info in Record: Description of “The Goodwill Cups”, which notes that the base of the third cup is decorated with an image of “American Indians on horseback spearing a bison or wild bull of the prairie”.
Era (London) September 24, 1848: 10:4.
Info in Record: A ‘joke’ about a “Negro funeral”
Era (London) May 21, 1843: 8:4.
Info in Record: News item discussing “the trial, sentence and execution of the negroes who had been engaged in the revolt” against the new President.
Era (London) April 19, 1846: 7:4.
Info in Record: News item on racist response to Indian corn in Ireland.
Era (London) August 5, 1849: 5:3.
Info in Record: A piece in the “Our Carpet Bag” section entitled “Patrick and Sambo”. It reads as follows: “An Irishman and a negro were fighting a few days ago in Paramatta, and while grappling with each other, the Irishman exclaimed, ‘You black vagabond, hallo, enough! I’ll fight till I die!’ ‘So will I,’ sung out the negro, ‘I always does’”.
Era (London) October 22, 1848: 10:4.
Info in Record: “A Negro Naturalist.” Negro "joke" in dialect.
Era (London) May 28, 1843: 6:3.
Info in Record: Two brief examples of supposed “negro dialogue”, written in the “slave dialect” common to blackface minstrel performances.
Era (London) May 3, 1846: 3:2.
Info in Record: Report on a ‘negress’ in America who gave birth to twins, ‘one black and the other white.’
Era (London) August 19, 1849: 7:4.
Info in Record: Discussion of a piece from ‘The Richmond Republican’, which claims that “at least five blacks die [of cholera] to one white, on account of their having less control of their appetites…”.
Era (London) August 26, 1849: 9:2-3.
Info in Record: Quotation of part of a work by James Silk Buckingham, which claims that “thousands” of British people are “but half-fed, wretchedly clothed, miserably lodged, wholly uninstructed, and not enjoying so much actual happiness as the Hottentots of Africa, the Indians of America, or the savages of New Zealand.”
Era (London) October 29, 1848: 10:4.
Info in Record: “Negro Comfort.” A ‘Sambo Negro’ joke in dialect.
Era (London) September 3, 1843: 3:4.
Info in Record: A piece entitled “A Colored Soger” in the ‘Our Carpet Bag’ section. Purports to describe the reaction of “a sentinel belonging to Queen Victoria’s black regiment, stationed at Niagara” to someone appearing “at the lines late at night”. Uses “slave dialect”.
Era (London) May 3, 1846: 3:4.
Info in Record: A racist joke: “An aboriginal American was asked if he had known the Bishop of Quebec? ‘Yes, yes.’ ‘And how did you like him?’ ‘Oh, vastly!’ ‘But how did you happen to know him?’ ‘Happen to know him! Why, I ate a piece of him!’”
Era (London) September 9, 1849: 2:4.
Info in Record: A curious addition at the bottom of a page, which reads as follows: “Darkness. A blind Ethiopian, in a dark cellar, at midnight, looking for a black cat”.
Era (London) November 19, 1843: 2:1.
Info in Record: An excerpt (from a piece featured in the ‘Literature’ section) which describes a shipwreck from the (fictional) Captain’s perspective. Includes descriptions of the responses of “blacks” onboard, as well as some dialogue in “slave dialect”.
Era (London) May 24, 1846: 1:4.
Info in Record: A joke about Mingo, a slave, and his master; uses minstrel dialect.
Era (London) September 16, 1849: 8:1.
Era (London) October 24, 1847: 10:3.
Info in Record: A brief example of supposed “negro dialogue”, written in the “slave dialect” common to blackface minstrel performances. The same excerpt was also printed in The Era on May 28, 1843 (6:3).
Era (London) June 7, 1846: 12:4.
Info in Record: Racial joke. Punch line: “Oh, he was as black as black can be. Why, father, charcoal would make a white mark on him!”)