In this Book

I Belong to South Carolina
summary
Out of the hundreds of published slave narratives,only a handful exist specific to South Carolina, and most of these are not readily available to modern readers. Edited by Susanna Ashton, this collection restores to print seven slave narratives documenting the lived realities of slavery as it existed across the Palmetto State's upcountry, midlands, and lowcountry, from plantation culture to urban servitude. First published between the late eighteenth century and the dawn of the twentieth, these richly detailed firsthand accounts present a representative cross section of slave experiences, from religious awakenings and artisan apprenticeships to sexual exploitations and harrowing escapes. In their distinctive individual voices, narrators celebrate and mourn the lives of fellow slaves, contemplate the meaning of freedom, and share insights into the social patterns and cultural controls exercised during a turbulent period in American history. Each narrative is preceded by an introduction to place its content and publication history in historical context. The volume also features an afterword surveying other significant slave narratives and related historical documents on South Carolina. I Belong to South Carolina reinserts a chorus of powerful voices of the dispossessed into South Carolina's public history, reminding us of the cruelties of the past and the need for vigilant guardianship of liberty in the present and future.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. pp. 1-5
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  1. Contents
  2. pp. 6-7
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  1. Acknowledgments
  2. pp. vii-8
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  1. Editorial Method
  2. pp. viii-ix
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  1. Introduction
  2. pp. 1-13
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  1. Memoirs of the Life of Boston King, a Black Preacher (1798)
  2. pp. 14-39
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  1. "Clarinda: A Pious Colored Woman of South Carolina” (1875)
  2. pp. 40-48
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  1. “Recollections of Slavery by a Runaway Slave” (1838)
  2. pp. 49-82
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  1. The Experience of a Slave in South Carolina, by John Andrew Jackson (1862)
  2. pp. 83-126
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  1. My Life in the South, by Jacob Stroyer (1885)
  2. pp. 127-166
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  1. Life on the Old Plantation in Ante-Bellum Days, or a Story Based on Facts by the Reverend I. E. Lowery (1911)
  2. pp. 167-227
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  1. Before the War and after the Union: An Autobiography, by Sam Aleckson (1929)
  2. pp. 228-293
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  1. Afterword—the Slave Experience in South Carolina
  2. pp. 294-305
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  1. Index
  2. pp. 307-317
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