Adam Bell reward notice for escaped enslaved man named Perry C0500
Published by George Mason University Libraries
The enslavement of individuals of African descent - as well as other peoples of color - was legalized in the United States in 1641, with African Americans being the majority of enslaved individuals around 1708. The demand for enslaved individuals to work on southern plantations in the U.S. began in 1694, which only increased over time. In 1861 the Civil War erupted, one of the key issues of the war being states' rights as they related to the institution of slavery. In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclimation, which declared all enslaved peoples in Confederate states free, but this did not end slavery entirely. Two years later on December 18, 1865, slavery in the United States was officially abolished with the 13th Amendment. Despite the legal freedom of African Americans post-Amendment, the racist treatment and oppression of African Americans did not wane, resulting in Jim Crow law and eventually catalyzing the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950s and 1960s.
Adam Bell reward notice for escaped enslaved man named Perry, written on February 17, 1821. In the notice, Adam Bell details a ten dollar reward for Perry, an enslaved man who had attempted to escape at least once previous to this notice. Bell describes Perry as "about twenty seven or eight," and goes on to describe his appearance and clothing when he escaped. Bell states that anyone who finds Perry and delivers him to Bell in Prince Edward County, Virginia will be entitled to the reward.
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There are no restrictions on personal use. Permission to publish material from Adam Bell reward notice for escaped enslaved man named Perry must be obtained from the Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University Libraries.
The Special Collections Research Center also holds other collections related to the topic of slavery in the United States, including the George Mason letters to John Augustine Washington III, the Letter to James H. Reid regarding the enslavement of a group of African Americans, and the Deed of gift for an enslaved woman by Maynadier Mason.
Prince Edward County (Va.)
A digitized version of the notice can be found here: Adam Bell reward notice for escaped enslaved man named Perry.
Adam Bell reward notice for escaped enslaved man named Perry, C0500, Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University Libraries.
Purchased by SCRC in 2018.
Processing completed by Amanda Brent in July 2019. EAD markup completed by Amanda Brent in July 2019.
"Causes of the Civil War." PBS. https://www.pbs.org/opb/historydetectives/feature/causes-of-the-civil-war/ (accessed June 26, 2019).
"A History of Slavery in the United States." National Geographic. https://www.nationalgeographic.org/interactive/slavery-united-states/ (accessed June 26, 2019).
Urofsky, Melvin I. "Jim Crow law." Encyclopaedia Britannica. https://www.britannica.com/event/Jim-Crow-law (accessed June 26, 2019).