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Collections >> Titles by Harriet A. Jacobs (Harriet Ann) >> Harriet Jacobs' report "Cruelty to Slaves." in the New York Tribune, July 25, 1853

CRUELTY TO SLAVES.

FROM New York Tribune, 25 July 1853.


To the Editor of The N.Y. Tribune,

SIR: Having seen an article, a few days ago, that was going the rounds in some of the daily papers, denying the truth of an advertisement wherein Slaves were outlawed in North Carolina. I wish to reply to it through your columns. I was born in that good old State, and less than 20 years since I left it, and it is not that length of time since I witnessed there a sight which I can never forget. It was a slave that been a runaway from his master twelvemonths. After that time a white man is justified in shooting a slave, as he is considered an outlaw. This slave man was brought to the wharf, placed in a small boat, by two white men, early in the morning, with his head severed from his body, and remained there in an August sun until noon, before an inquest was held. Then he was buried, and not a word of murder or of arrest was heard. He was a negro and a runaway slave, and it was all right. It mattered not who murdered him—if he was a white man he was sure of the reward, and the name of being a brave fellow, truly[.] The writer of that article has said, the people of North Carolina have hearts and souls like our own. Surely, many of them have. The poor slave, however, who had his head severed from his body was owned by a merchant in New-York.

A FUGITIVE.

Titles by Harriet A. Jacobs (Harriet Ann)