Cover

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Title Page, Copyright

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pp. 1-2

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About This Edition

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p. 3

This edition is made available under the imprint of DocSouth Books, a collaborative endeavor between the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Library and the University of North Carolina Press. Titles in DocSouth Books are drawn from the Library’s Documenting the American South (DocSouth) digital publishing program, online at docsouth.unc. edu. These print and downloadable e-book editions have been prepared from the DocSouth electronic editions.

Both DocSouth and DocSouth Books present the transcribed content of historic books as they...

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Summary

Jenn Williamson

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pp. 4-7

In the introduction to The History of Mary Prince, editor Thomas Pringle asserts that “The idea of writing Mary Prince’s history was first suggested by herself.” Her purpose, writes Pringle, is to ensure that “good people in England might hear from a slave what a slave had felt and suffered” (p. i). Prince’s History is one of the earliest narratives intended to reveal the ugly truths about slavery in the West Indies to an English reading public, who were largely unaware of its atrocities. While eighteenth-century slave narratives often focused on Christian spiritual journeys and religious redemption,...

The History of Mary Prince, A West Indian Slave. Related by Herself.

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Preface.

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pp. 8-9

The idea of writing Mary Prince’s history was first suggested by herself. She wished it to be done, she said, that good people in England might hear from a slave what a slave had felt and suffered; and a letter of her late master’s, which will be found in the Supplement, induced me to accede to her wish without farther delay. The more immediate object of the publication will afterwards appear.

The narrative was taken down from Mary’s own lips by a lady who happened to be at the time residing in my family as a visitor. It was written...

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Postscript.—Second Edition.

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pp. 10-11

Since the First Edition of this Tract was published, Mary Prince has been afflicted with a disease in the eyes, which, it is feared, may terminate in total blindness: such, at least, is the apprehension of some skilful medical gentlemen who have been consulted on the case. Should this unfortunately be the result, the condition of the poor negro woman, thus cruelly and hopelessly severed from her husband and her home, will be one peculiarly deserving of commiseration; and I mention the circumstance at present on purpose to induce the friends of humanity to promote the more zealously...

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The History of Mary Prince a West Indian Slave.

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pp. 12-63

(Related by herself.) I WAS born at Brackish-Pond, in Bermuda, on a farm belonging to Mr. Charles Myners. My mother was a household slave; and my father, whose name was Prince, was a sawyer belonging to Mr. Trimmingham, a ship-builder at Crow-Lane. When I was an infant, old Mr. Myners died, and there was a division of the slaves and other property among the family. I was bought along with my mother by old Captain Darrel, and given to his grandchild, little Miss Betsey Williams. Captain Williams, Mr. Darrel’s son-in-law, was master of a vessel which traded to...

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Appendix.

Susanna Strickland, Susan Brown, and Martha A. Browne

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pp. 64-65

“Dear Madam,
“My husband having read to me the passage in your last letter to him, expressing a desire to be furnished with some description of the marks of former ill-usage on Mary Prince’s person,—I beg in reply to state, that the whole of the back part of her body is distinctly scarred, and, as it were, chequered, with the vestiges of severe floggings. Besides this, there are many large scars on other parts of her person, exhibiting an appearance as if the flesh had been deeply cut, or lacerated with gashes, by some instrument wielded by most...