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The Chattel PrincipleInternal Slave Trades in the Americas$
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Walter Johnson

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780300103557

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300103557.001.0001

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Reconsidering the Internal Slave Trade

Reconsidering the Internal Slave Trade

Paternalism, Markets, and the Character of the Old South

(p.143) 7 Reconsidering the Internal Slave Trade
The Chattel Principle

Lacy Ford

Yale University Press

This chapter focuses on Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin and the powerful fictional characterizations of the inhumane domestic slave trade and the mischievous traders rendered within its pages. One example is Haley, the trader who carried Tom south, congratulating himself on “how humane he was” because “other men” chained their slave merchandise, whereas “he only put fetters on the feet.” Later in the novel, two men arguing about the compatibility of Christianity and slavery asked Haley his opinion on the subject as a professional trader. Haley replied: “I never thought on it....I took up the trade just to make a living; if it ain't right, I calculated to 'pent on it in time, ye know.”

Keywords:   mischievous traders, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Uncle Tom's Cabin, Haley, Tom, Christianity

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