University Historians Assembling Archive of Runaway Slave Advertisements

Researchers at the University of Southern Mississippi are assembling an archive of newspaper advertisements from 1790 to 1860 that seek the return of runaway slaves. Douglas Chambers and Max Grivno of the university’s department of history are searching Mississippi newspapers of the period for ads placed by slave masters. They hope to expand the archive to include similar advertisements from newspapers across the South as well as in the Caribbean and Brazil.

Newspaper advertisements soliciting information about the whereabouts or sightings of runaway slaves often include first and last names of the slaves and their masters, where they lived, ages, and names of the current and previous slaveholder. “These advertisements help us see the enslaved as real individuals, not simply as a group,” Chambers said.

“This anthology will be an absolute gold mine for academic researchers, genealogists, and others who want to learn more about this time period, the conditions of slaves and the attitudes of their masters in regard to recovering what they considered their property,” Grivno said.

Chambers and Grivno plan to transcribe the documents and then organize them into a searchable online archive.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Get the JBHE Weekly Bulletin

Receive our weekly email newsletter delivered to your inbox

Latest News

Pew Research Center Provides Insight into Share of Black-Owned Businesses in the United States

Through analyzing data from the United States Census Bureau and the National Science Foundation, the Pew Research Center found that Black-owned businesses make up 3 percent of companies and earn 1 percent of gross revenue in the United States.

Martin Lemellle Appointed the Eleventh President of Grambling State University

Dr. Martin Lemelle has been serving as executive vice president and chief financial officer at the Maryland Institute College of Art.

Study Finds Elementary School Teachers More Likely to Discipline Black Boys than White Peers

“It is important to understand how race and racism shape children’s earliest school experiences,” wrote study author, Dr. Calvin Zimmerman. “Even for students as young as 6 years old, schools perpetuate existing social and educational inequalities.”

Johnnetta Betsch Cole Appointed President-In-Residence of the United Negro College Fund Capital Campaign

“With her immense expertise and passion for education, Dr. Cole will play a pivotal role in advancing the goals of our capital campaign and UNCF’s mission of ensuring equal access to higher education for underrepresented students of color,” said Dr. Michael L. Lomax, president and chief executive officer of the United Negro College Fund.

Featured Jobs