Skip to comments.FLASHBACK: John Casor – The Case Of The “First Slave” (Northam Relevant)
Posted on 02/11/2019 12:26:27 PM PST by TigerClaws
Northam was right. Also, the first slave owner in America was a black man:
John Casor was legally declared a slave for life on March 8th, 1655, thus becoming the first person ever to receive this treatment. Indentured servants
Britains first colony in North America was Virginia. There, the officials of this state offered land for free to those colonist who would bring more colonists to Virginia. Many people were ready to take advantage of this offer, but they couldnt afford the cost of the trip across the ocean. In order to attract more people, the wealthy colonists of Virginia offered to pay the expenses of the voyage for those who will work for them to repay the debt. The term for people who paid for their journey through labor was indentured servants. Most of these servants learned a trade during the time in which they worked for the debt, and they could earn money through it after the debt was repaid.
One of the first servants to clear his debt was an African named Anthony Johnson who worked from 1619 to 1623 and attained his freedom this way.
Anthony Johnson was from Angola and was one of the first black colonists in America. After gaining his freedom and becoming a free N*gro, Johnson soon acquired 250 acres of land and started farming it. Source: www.pbs.org
During these four years, he became an accomplished tobacco planter and later employed five indentured servants of his own, one of them being John Casor. For bringing in servants, Johnson was given another 250 acres of land as headrights.
After completing seven years of his service, Casor asked for his freedom, which he was refused by Johnson. But, in the mid-time Johnson was persuaded by his family members to allow John Casor to work for a white colonist named Robert Parker. Johnson v Parker
Johnson didnt stick to his decision and chose to take matters to court and demand that John Casor is returned to him for service. County Court of Northampton County, Virginia decided to give the ownership to Johnson on March 8th, 1655 after Johnson claimed that Parker took his n*gro servant and that by rights Thee had ye N*gro for his life. Source: thegrio.com Lifelong slave John Casor
John Casor was returned to Johnson, and as result of this decision, he was the first person ever to be legally declared a slave. Another consequence of this is that Anthony Johnson this way become the first slaveholder in the history of the United States. Casor remained a servant to Johnson for the rest of his life. What Johnson did was a precedent that led to the years of slavery in North America.
Legal implications of the courts decision were vast, as it set several precedents. It was the first recorded instance of a man being declared slave without committing a crime. John Punch, who was declared indentured servant for life previously has earned his sentence by trying to escape his servitude, and the court found him guilty of breaching the contract. Casor, on the other hand, hasnt done anything wrong. Several laws were based on his case namely the 1670 act barring free and baptized n*groes and Indians from owning Christians, meaning white Europeans. They did, however, retain the right to purchase members of their own race as slaves.
As racism became more prevalent in Virginia, Johnson decided to sell his farm and move to Maryland, where he leased 300 acres for tobacco growing.
After his passing in 1670, Johnsons 300 acres were passed to white colonists and not to his children. The reason was that as a black man Anthony Johnson was not a citizen of the colony.
By this time, the slave trade was developing into a major business, and slave ships brought more and more African men and women to satisfy the ever-growing need for labor in the colonies. Having other black men as slave owners was considered a bad example that may provoke other slaves to revolt, so in 1699, the Virginia Assembly passed the law expelling all free N*groes from the colony, thus declaring that only way for an African to live in Virginia is to be a slave.
History lesson of the week. Northam was right on this.
Calling it "VANITY" as the story referenced was from May of 2018.
wow, a black man started slavery in America.
This is an important history lesson that everyone should learn. What is missing is that it was an English judge and the colonies were under English rule.
Slaves became the “money” the English needed to pay for the cotton and other goods from the colonies.
The importation of slaves into the newly formed United
States was ended in 1808. Fifty-seven years later they were all free. In geopolitical time, that is like a mere blink of the eye.
Thank you for pointing that out.
I've done that math, too.
It in no way erases the evil of slavery in the US, but at least we DID something about it.
And slavery has existed from the beginning of time.
Compared to other countries, we were pikers.
Just look at South America.
They took by an order of magnitude more of the bulk of trans-Atlantic slaves than North America.
But nobody gives us credit for how DESCENDANTS of slaves in the US have done vs. I don't know, EVERYWHERE on Earth.
There were slaves of all skin shades. Europeans were too hard to discern slave from free, Natives were considered to have a poor work ethic (not my words), and Africans were ideal because their skin color stuck out, their language barrier made plotting hard and they had an incredible work ability. African slavery in America was a crime of convenience and not bias - at least not in the beginning. Tangentially, in the world of reparations, are we going to hand out money to the Irish, Brits, and Native American?
He wasn't the first to be declared a slave for life. Perhaps he was the first to be enslaved to a black man but a 1640 Virginia court decision ruled, "Whereas Hugh Gwyn hath . . . brought back from Maryland three servants formerly run away . . . the court doth . . . order [that] the first serve out their times with their master according to their indentures, . . . and that [the] third being a negro named John Punch shall serve his said master or his assigns for the time of his natural life here or elsewhere."
History is great, if only it were true.
He was technically correct, but nobody will admit it.
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