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In Their Own Words

June 11, 1740

Slave Revolt Recorded

William Stephens recorded news of a slave revolt in South Carolina in his journal, with fears of such things happening repeatedly, but not in Georgia for the time being:

“…This Day we had Intelligence again of another Rising of the Negroes in Carolina, which, unless soon suppressed, has the Appearance of greater Danger than any of the former; forasmuch as this broke out near Charles-Town itself, about Ashley River, Dorchester, and the circumjacent Parts, where at least a hundred and fifty were got together in Defiance: But as they were yet unprovided with Arms, and there was no Corn on the Ground ripe, for their Subsistance, it was hoped they would quickly be dispersed: And the Country being all alarmed and in Pursuit of them, they had already taken about fifty, whom they were daily hanging, ten in a Day. Such dreadful Work, it is to be feared, we may hear more of in Time, in case they come to breaking open Stores to find Arms, as they did the last Year; and are able to keep the Field, with Plenty of Corn and Potatoes every where; and above all, if it is considered how vastly disproportionate the Number of white Men is to theirs: So that at best, the Inhabitants cannot live without perpetually guarding their own Safety, now become so precarious. What Inference may be drawn from hence, with relation to this Colony, will be best done by the honourable Persons who make the Welfare of Georgia their Study. …”

Source: Allen D. Candler, ed. The Colonial Records of the State of Georgia, Vol. IV, Stephens’ Journal 1737-1740, Atlanta, GA, 1906, p. 592.