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Calling Out LibertyThe Stono Slave Rebellion and the Universal Struggle for Human Rights$
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Jack Shuler

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9781604732733

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604732733.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 17 June 2021

Negro Acts

Negro Acts

Communication and African American Declarations of Independence

(p.96) Chapter 4 Negro Acts
Calling Out Liberty

Jack Shuler

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter examines the legal repercussions the Stono Rebellion, which broke out on September 9, 1739 when a group of Kongolese slaves-turned-rebels hoping to gain liberty stormed a storehouse near Charles Town in the Spanish colony of South Carolina and went on to kill about twenty-three white colonists before being subdued by the militia. It looks at the rebellion’s implications for communication and human rights, and discusses the passage of a number of regulations related to slavery, including “An Act for the Better Ordering and Governing of Negroes and Other Slaves in this Province,” also known as the “Negro Act,” signed into law on May 10, 1740. The Negro Act offered rewards to Native Americans who captured runaways and sought to enhance the social position of poor whites, turning racism into a “realistic device for control” by transforming the legal status of South Carolina’s slaves from freehold property to chattel. The chapter analyzes African American declarations of independence following the Stono Rebellion.

Keywords:   slaves, Stono Rebellion, rebels, liberty, South Carolina, communication, human rights, slavery, Negro Act, declarations of independence

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