Thursday, February 25, 2016

The Domestic Slave Trade - The Other End

Over the years I've shared several newspaper advertisements that highlight the domestic slave trade in the United States from various points of origin. However, not surprisingly slave traders also marketed their offerings at destinations.

The above advertisement appeared in the New Year's Day 1857 edition of the Memphis Daily Appeal. In it the traders, the Littles, wanted potential buyers to know they had "JUST RECEIVED, From Virginia and Middle Tennessee A LIKELY lot of young Negroes, consisting of field hands, house servants, a number one cook  and general house servant."

The Littles went on to let buyers, "Planters and others," know that they were "invited to give us a call."

Likewise, New Orleans slave trader O. F. Hatcher advertised that his remodeled and "Commodious Show-Room" was "prepared to accommodate over 200 Negroes." Interestingly, Hatcher also marketed rooms and amenities for buyers and sellers of slaves "on reasonable terms."

The reach of the domestic slave trade was enormous in that this ad did not appear in a New Orleans newspaper, but in the Richmond Enquirer, on December 6, 1859. By advertising in Richmond, Hatcher was probably seeking to let sellers know he bought surplus enslaved individuals, but as he specifically pointed out in this ad, he also offered slaves "for sale."

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