This October 8, 1822 edition of the General Advertiser (Easton, MD) has a total of 15 slave-related advertisements including one that says, “RANAWAY or was kinappped…a negro woman named HARRIET, who has a white male child, about one year old…Her child is named William Alford Henry, but generally called Alford. She has generally been used to house work, such as plain cooking, &c. and is much addicted to snuff rubbing…”
This is The Natchez Weekly Courier from September 24, 1856. It is a four-page weekly that is COMPLETE and in fine condition. There are nine different slave advertisements with two of them illustrated; four of the slave ads are relating to runaways. One of the slave ads is for Lewis, a 26-year-old runaway with the horrific statement, “…a scar under his left eye, and he has been badly whipped.” I have never seen a more haunting statement in a runaway slave advertisement. Click for six more photos…
This March 13, 1855 edition of the New York Tribune includes an article about an advertisement for “Negro Dogs.” It states, “I would inform the citizens of Holmes County that i still have my NEGRO DOGS and that they are in good training and ready to attend to all calls of hunting and catching RUNAWAY NEGROES at the following rates. For hunting per day, five dollars
This August 30, 1828 edition of the National Intelligencer has 7 slave ads. One advertises a FORTY DOLLARS REWARD for a 17 or 18-year-old named William. “He is of a bright yellow complexion…his hair nearly straight; is an excellent house servant and waiter, and unusually smart and intelligent for one of his color.” Another advertises FIFTY DOLLARS REWARD for SYE. “When he left home had a swollen face and a cut finger occasioned from an attack made by him on his overseer a few days before he absconded. His wife is living in Washington City, with Mr. John Baker, who hires
This September 6, 1828 edition of The National Intelligencer (Washington D.C.) has a total of 5 slave ads. The first offers “FORTY DOLLARS REWARD” for “my Negro Woman, LETTY BROWN, taking with her, her two children, Bob and Dave…she is about 35 or 40 years of age. Bob is about 7 years of age…and carries his head on one side. Dave is about two years of age, of a yellow complexion…he has, also, a scar on the right or left arm, just above the elbow, occasioned by a burn which he received a few days before he was taken from my residence. The said woman and her children were taken off on Sunday night…by a yellow man of George Calvert’s, living near Bladensburgh, who calls himself Tarlton Brown, and who owns her as his wife.”
This November 29, 1933 edition of The Birmingham Post features a cover story titled “Mob Cheers As Negro Is Burned Alive.” It says, “The latest victim of mob vengeance, Lloyd Warner, was dragged from his cell, beaten into insensibility, hanged and then burned…More than two hours after the negro had been hanged, hundreds of citizens surged about the pyre, shouting, laughing and jesting. A festive spirit prevailed….Photographers snapped pictures of the gruesome scene…
This May 1, 1828 edition of the National Intelligencer includes a runaway slave advertisement stating, “NEGRO LEWIS absconded from the employment of a neighboring farmer sometime in the month of January last, and has not been seen by his employer since. He is about 22 years of age, remarkably stout, and nearly six feet high. Lewis is a fine looking fellow, very cunning, and can look dull, heavy, or sprightly, when he pleases. He will no doubt obtain a forged pass, and make for Pennsylvania. I have been recently informed that his sweetheart is a slave, belonging to
This December 11, 1821 edition of the General Advertiser features 14 slave advertisements, 13 of them are runaway ads. Photos for all of them are listed below, but one of them involves a runaway child who is 3 feet four inches high. This newspaper was delivered to and owned by John Quincy Adams when he was Secretary of State in the James Monroe administration. His name “John Q Adams, Esq” is written (not by Adams) in the top left hand blank margin of the front page, and served as a sort of 19th century address label.
This September 6th, 1825 edition of the National Intelligencer (in Washington DC) contains 3 particularly heartbreaking runaway slave ads. The first is a “$100 DOLLARS REWARD” for BEN, and states “He can write a pretty good hand, and no doubt has copied the papers of some free man; and I have reason to believe he stole the Stafford County seal and attached the impression of it to his papers. He carried with him three of his daughters, the property of my neighbor, Moses Kendall, and a Negro Man, the husband of one of
This February 1st, 1965 edition of the El Paso Herald-Post leads with the bold (all-caps) headline “DR. KING, 270 MARCHERS ARRESTED.” The sub-headline states “Negro Leader Later Freed; Re-Arrested.” This newspaper tells the story of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s arrest and re-arrest in Selma, Alabama after leading a large protest march for the right to vote….
COMPLETE newspaper, the Dallas Morning News dated Sept 5, 1957. Front page headline and famous photo of Elizabeth Eckford and Hazel Bryan Massery. One of the most infamous photos of the Civil Rights Movement, it came to symbolize the vehement (and sometimes violent) rejection of integrated schooling by whites. Eckford was one of the “Little Rock Nine” who integrated Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas after the President sent the 101st Airborne to escort the nine African American children into the school (after the Governor of Arkansas called out the Arkansas National Guard to prevent their entry). Click here to see autograph of Hazel Bryan Massery. Newspaper was
James Earl Ray (March 10, 1928 – April 23, 1998) was an American fugitive and felon convicted of assassinating Martin Luther King Jr. on April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tennessee. On June 8, 1968, two months after King’s death, Ray was arrested at London Heathrow Airport attempting to leave the United Kingdom for Brussels on a false Canadian passport. At the airport, officials noticed that Ray carried another passport under a second name. The UK quickly extradited Ray to Tennessee, where he was charged with King’s murder. He confessed to the crime on March 10, 1969, his 41st birthday, and after pleading guilty he was sentenced to 99 years in prison. On June 10, 1977, Ray and six other convicts escaped from Brushy Mountain State Penitentiary in Petros, Tennessee. They were recaptured on June 13. A year was added to Ray’s previous sentence, increasing it to 100 years.
Anyone who knows elementary Civil Rights history knows about the police dogs and fire hoses that were used against demonstrators in Birmingham, Alabama. This May 5, 1963 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser shows the fascinatingly DIFFERENT perspective of the mainstream media in Alabama with documenting the event; the demonstrators are depicted as a “mob” and a “taunting crowd” who “challenged police officials to use the water hoses and leashed dogs.” Note Rev. James Bevel (they misspelled his name) in front page photo
This is the May 22, 1961 edition of The Mexia (Texas) Daily News with the headline “700 U.S. MARSHALS SENT TO ALABAMA.” On May 21, 1961, First Baptist Church in Montgomery, Alabama was a refuge for the passengers on the Freedom ride which met with violence at the Greyhound Bus Station in downtown Montgomery. The church was filled with some 1500 worshipers and activists, including Martin Luther King, Jr., Fred Shuttlesworth, Diane Nash, and James Farmer. The building was besieged by 3000 whites who threatened to burn it
This complete April 30, 1956 edition of the Mobile Register has two BOLD examples of political segregation ads. The first ad, for Judge Roy Mayhall running for the Alabama Supreme Court, shows a rooster with the slogan “WHITE SUPREMACY FOR THE RIGHT“. The second ad, for C.W. (Charlie) McKay, Jr. running for Democratic National Committeeman, says “Alabama’s Fighting Champion for Segregation” and “Show Big Jim Folsom, the “Darling of the NAACP,” how you feel about Segregation and mongrelization.” Also, it says “McKay has sponsored Bills to keep Negro students, like Autherine Lucy, out of our white colleges.“…
This May 2nd, 2001 mint condition copy of The Birmingham News has the cover story “BLANTON GUILTY” which details the conviction of Ku Klux Klansman Thomas E. Blanton who bombed the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, killing 4 little girls, on September of 1963. Subtitle says, “Prosecutor: ‘Justice Delayed Is Still Justice'”.
I obtained this newspaper after flying to Birmingham, Alabama to witness this historic trial. While only there a few days, I was blessed to be there for the rendering of the verdict of “Guilty”; an unforgettable moment.
This May 28, 1961 headline from The Mexia (Texas) Daily News says “RIDERS REMAIN IN JAIL RATHER THAN PAY FINES.” Right under the headline is an article with the title “Kennedy says Negro Could Be President Within 30-40 Years.” The Freedom Riders challenged the status quo by riding interstate buses in the South in mixed racial groups to challenge local laws or customs that enforced segregation in seating. The Freedom Rides, and the violent reactions they provoked, bolstered
Viola Liuzzo is the only white female martyr of the American Civil Rights Movement. In March of 1965, Liuzzo heeded the call of Martin Luther King Jr. and traveled from Detroit, Michigan, to Selma, Alabama, in the wake of the Bloody Sunday attempt at marching across the Edmund Pettus Bridge. Liuzzo participated in the successful Selma to Montgomery marches and helped with coordination and logistics. At the age of 39, while driving back from a trip shuttling fellow activists to the Montgomery airport, she was fatally hit by shots fired from a pursuing car containing Ku Klux Klan (KKK) members Collie Wilkins, William Eaton, Eugene Thomas, and Gary Thomas Rowe, the latter of whom was actually an undercover informant working for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). In addition
Three separate newspapers covering the story of the Landmark 1954 Brown versus Board of Education Decision in the May 17, 1954 Atlanta Journal, the Chattanooga News-Free Press, and the May 18th, 1954 Chattanooga Daily Times. Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, 347 U.S. 483 (1954), was a landmark United States Supreme Court case in which the Court declared state laws establishing separate public schools for black and white students to be unconstitutional.
This October 21, 1962 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser has a headline of “Plea For State Militia By Wallace Expected” and includes the article “King Plans New Drive In Alabama“. This article mentions the success of the Montgomery Bus Boycott and says that Martin Luther King “plans to recruit a nonviolent army to fight segregation in Alabama where his passive resistance move started 7 years ago“. The article titled “U of A Integration Aim Spurs Move, Sources Hint” says “Incoming Governor George C. Wallace is expected to take steps to create a state militia in the wake of an announced integration attempt at the University of Alabama.”
This is the September 2, 1965 edition of the “Birmingham Independent”, a racist newsletter. The cover story is about J. Edgar Hoover. Articles include this astounding passage “Birmingham was a fine, cheerful city. The Negroes were happy. King and his cohorts moved in, and with some local agitators began stirring up bad feelings and convincing the Negroes that they were not happy at all….He actually preferred that (demands) were not met because this was a cheaper way to promote propaganda to feed his innocent victims on hatred. What followed…were riots, racial disturbances, and the death of four Negro children”
This is a February 20, 1966 edition of “The Councilor“, an anti-integration newsletter published in Shreveport, Louisiana. Articles include “‘Stab-Ins’ Planned As New Civil Rights Terror Campaign“, “Post Office Hiring Now Discriminates Against Whites”, and “Louisiana Race-Mixers Are Under Severe Fire From Aroused Public”. Name of addressee and PO Box address is clearly printed on newsletter.
This “Special Wallace Tabloid” is published by the Montgomery Advertiser and Alabama Journal and is titled “THE DRAMATIC FIRST YEAR” celebrating segregationist Governor George Wallace’s first year as Governor of Alabama. The tabloid is filled with history and numerous congratulations from businesses throughout Alabama (see photo).
This May 31, 1963 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser has a cover story that says “Leader Says Klan Won’t Attend Mix“. This story quotes Imperial Wizard of the United Klans of America Robert M. Shelton, who says that the KKK will not attend the integration of the all-white University of Alabama by Vivian J. Malone (African-American) and states “The Klan
This May 2, 1966 edition of The Birmingham News has cover story of “U.S. Observers Sent to Black Belt“ with the larger title on the page reading “Alabama in Spotlight As Six States to Vote.” Other cover stories: “Millions will go to polls“, “Impact of ’65 Voting Rights Act to be felt“, “All in line can vote if identified”. Click “Continue Reading” for full-page insert advertising Wallace for Governor.
Interestingly, this May 29, 1963 edition of The Birmingham Post-Herald erroneously shows a date of MAY 29, 1863 (100 YEARS EARLIER) and includes an article titled “Fort Sumter, 1963, Seems Near At Hand“. It talks about Governor Faubus (Arkansas) yielding to the Federal Government over integration, Governor Ross (Mississippi) yielding, and wonders if Governor Wallace (Alabama) will stand his ground and not allow James Meredith (an African-American) to enter the all-white University of Alabama. It The newspaper also has an article titled “Harlem Negroes Impatient, Angry, Tired of Platitudes“,
This May 28, 1963 edition of The Birmingham Post-Herald shows a cover story of “Wallace’s Complaint Rejected“. Other stories include “Negro Maid Given Papers By Marshals“, “Schoolhouse Door Plan of Wallace Is Outlined” (this describes in detail how the Governor intends to defy the U.S. Marshals who will attempt to enroll the first African-American), “Desegregation Proposals Coming” which states “unless all signs fail, another filibuster by Conservative Southern Democrats is likely to greet any new civil rights measures in the Senate.” Other articles include “RFK Urges Theater Men To End (Negro) Ban” and “Troop Action By President Ruled Valid“.
This is the famous and historic headline from the October 2, 1962 edition of The New York Times reporting THE END OF SEGREGATION IN MISSISSIPPI when James Meredith integrated the all-white University of Alabama. White segregationists from around the state joined students and locals in a violent, 15-hour riot on the campus on September 30, in which two people were killed execution style, hundreds were wounded, and six federal marshals were shot. The headline reads “3,000 TROOPS PUT DOWN MISSISSIPPI RIOTS AND ARREST 112 AS NEGRO BEGINS CLASSES”. A photo of The New York Times coverage of this event is included in Taylor Branch’s Pulitzer Prize winning masterpiece Parting the Waters. Other articles include “Soldiers Beaten; Homes Damaged”, “Campus a Bivouac As Negro Enters”, and “Mobs Armed With Bottles and Bricks Terrorized Oxford From Dawn Until Noon”
This is the front page of the May 13, 1963 issue of the Winnipeg Free Press newspaper featuring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. with American “Stars and Bars” artistically creating a jail cell. This was based on his historic incarceration in Birmingham (the month before) where he penned the “Letter from Birmingham Jail”.
This May 14, 1963 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser has the cover story “Wallace Hints Court Order To Oust Troops” with subtitle “Governor Insists Military Units In Alabama Illegally“. A unique article “King Preaches His Doctrine In Pool Halls, On Sidewalks“, describes the effort of the SCLC to protect the Civil Rights Movement from violence by preaching nonviolence even in the most unlikely places (and even collecting knives while doing so!
This May 10th, 1963 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser shows the headline “King Says Agreement Reached On Demands“. Subtitle says “Birmingham Truce Still In Effect“. Another interesting cover story says “Wires Praise, Attack Wallace On Racial Issue At Birmingham” and quotes from disapproving Connecticut Governor John Dempsey (whom Wallace tells to “mind his own business” and quotes from supportive Mississippi Governor Ross Barnett. Inside the paper is a very interesting article is titled “Pep Rallies Heartbeat of Birmingham’s Negro Movement“. This last article is a surprisingly neutral observation from a reporter inside a local church rally who notes that “It’s there that they receive the spiritual push necessary to face police, firemen and jail.”
The Birmingham News (Alabama) from June 13, 1967 has cover story “NEGRO NOMINATED FOR COURT” about Thurgood Marshall’s historic nomination to the Supreme Court with the subtitle “Ex-NAACP aid first of his race to be named.” Also includes article “Tampa Negroes loot, burn slums”, and “Carmichael likely to go free on bond” about Stokely Carmichael.
This April 30, 1950 edition of The Mobile Press Register is complete and inside features a VERY large (14″ x 5″) political ad for Eugene ‘Bull’ Connor as a candidate for Governor of the state of Alabama. This ad says that he is “Alabama’s States’ Rights Democrat.” As Safety Commissioner, Bull Connor became a symbol of the segregated south after journalists captured the violent aftermath of his instruction to the Birmingham Fire Department to put their water hoses on demonstrators and ordered the Birmingham Police Department to attack demonstrators with police dogs….
Albany was considered Martin Luther King’s only failure in the Civil Rights Movement (thanks to Police Chief Laurie Prichett, who studied the mistakes of King’s previous adversaries). See below for a brief history of the Albany Movement. This June 20, 1963 edition of The Atlanta Constitution has the headline “President’s Rights Bill Assailed by Georgians“. It has the subtitle “Kennedy Blueprints Broad Plan“. One cover article states “Marchers Hurl Rocks In Albany” (with quotes from infamous Police Chief Laurie Prichett). The title of a very interesting Opp/Ed piece “The Civil Rights Controversy Continues Uppermost in the Minds of the Readers” reflects the outrage of someone who witnessed a black patron being carried out of a restaurant feet first; the writer vows never to return
“All 4 in King Beating Acquitted” This is the COMPLETE newspaper from the acquittal of the 4 police officers charged with beating black motorist Rodney King. Newspaper is in great condition; a real time capsule. Rodney Glen King III (April 2, 1965 – June 17, 2012) was an American construction worker who became nationally known after being beaten by Los Angeles police officers following a high-speed car chase on March 3, 1991. A local witness, George Holliday, videotaped much of it from his balcony. The footage shows five officers surrounding King, several of them striking him repeatedly, while other officers
This July 26, 1964 edition of The Atlanta Journal and Constitution contains a very interesting editorial cartoon about the Harlem Race Riots. The cartoon’s captions says “Brother Nero, do you smell smoke?” and includes caricatures of the leaders of the SCLC (Martin Luther King), the NAACP, SNCC, and CORE playing the violin to the music of “We Shall Overcome”.
This is the December 29,1825 edition of The Virginian. There are a total of 8 slave ads, 2 of them are runaway slave notices. The most disturbing of the ads states, “WANTED the ensuing year, a NEGRO MAN of steady habits to remain about a House and Lot–one that is a little advanced in years, and without a wife would be preferred–also a small girl about 8 or 10 years of age. Apply at this office.”
This is the July 14, 1840 edition of the Richmond Enquirer and contains 3 runaway slave advertisements. The first slave as states $225 REWARD–Ran away from the undersigned, about the 1st of January last, a negro woman named SCINDA–Since she has departed, I have every reason to believe she has for a long time been engaged with others in the use of poisonous medicants in the family, and suspicion rested on her previously. She is of common stature, dark skin, rather large and prominent nose, austere countenance, –about 27 years of age…” Also, $25 for CRITTY, a negro woman aged about 52 or 3. –Also, $75 for the apprehension of the two Thieves, and their conviction to the Penitentiary, who stole her from my kitchen a few nights ago. These two thieves came armed as Banditti, in the dead time of night and stole her off. She is of low stature and dark skin. She will make herself known on enquiry, as she is attached to the family, and came home after being dragged off by such a Banditti once before.”
“Negroes Wanted” and “200 Negroes Wanted” advertisements. COMPLETE front section of the Daily National Intelligencer, Washington D.C. Wednesday, January 30, 1833. First ad: “The subscriber wishes to purchase from forty to fifty Negroes of both sexes, form the age of twelve years to twenty-five. He will exchange two 2 story brick Houses…for Negroes, or give the highest cash price.” Second ad: “Two Hundred Negroes of both sexes from twelve to twenty-five years old, field hands or mechanics…determined to give higher prices for slaves than any purchaser who is now, or may hereafter come into this market.”
These 1839 runaway slaves from the COMPLETE front section of the Charleston Courier are described with incredible detail in these heartbreaking advertisements. In fact, I don’t see how someone can read these ads and not feel compassion for the men that must have been panic-stricken while on the run during the publication of this newspaper. From the 1st ad: “The above reward will be given on proof of being harbored by a white person ($300), or One Hundred Dollars for any or each of them, or Thirty Dollars for each, if proved to be harbored by a colored person, or Twenty-five Dollars for each of them being lodged in any Jail or Workhouse, so that I can get them.
“If they will return of their own accord, they will not be punished. Masters of vessels and others are particularly cautioned against employing or carrying them away, as the law will be strictly enforced.”
Interestingly, there is one ad seeking the conviction of a white person harboring a slave…”FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS REWARD for conviction of a White Person, who may have harbored my slave Billy…$200 for the conviction of a free person of color….$20 for proof of his having been harbored by a slave…” PLEASE SEE OTHER PHOTOS BELOW.
This May 18, 1963 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser shows a headline of “Gov. Wallace Files Suit Against Kennedy In D.C.” with subtitle “President Urges Racial Harmony“. Other articles included “Negroes Protest in Greensboro; 400 Arrested” and “Birmingham Increases Patrols For Weekend“. The latter article, referring to threats of racial bombing says “Negro volunteers posted themselves at the homes of integration leaders and churches Friday night.”
This is the full front section from the May 4th, 1838 Daily National Intelligencer. It includes one runaway and three slave purchase advertisements. First ad: “FIFTY DOLLARS REWARD.-Eloped from my residence ELOIZA, a young negress of ordinary stature and size, but strongly made, about 22 years old, color of a chestnut or brown, long thick wooly hair, which is commonly neatly combed, parted before, and tucked with combs. Her clothing consists of several calico frocks, white cotton aprons and collars, and a black bombasin dress. She has had from her birth a very singular mark, resembling the dashing on the skin of coffee grounds or some black substance. This mark, to the best of my recollection, commences on the neck or collar bone, and covers part of her breasts, body, and limbs, and when her neck and arms are uncovered is very perceptable. I understand that she calls herself Louisa, and has been frequently seen east and south of the Capitol square, and harbored by ill-
This May 30, 1963 edition of the Selma Times-Journal features interesting segregation, desegregation, and voters drive-related articles. One title states “No Sales of Liquor, Negro Entry Day” (liquor stores are ordered closed on the day that African-Americans Vivian Malone and James Hood enter the all-white University of Alabama); another states “Church Fight Won By Anti-Mixers” (delegates to a Methodist conference name 3 pro-segregationists to represent them). Finally, “Voters Drive Set for Birmingham” (Rev. Andrew Young gives details about a voter drive)
This letter to the editor from April 1, 1956 is from H.B. (Ben) Inzer who attended a meeting called to form a white Citizens Council. He describes Bull Connor as “wonderful” and describes Connor’s talk on segregation as “inspiring”. Inzer (the writer) says, “Through talking to many Negroes here in Margaret, Ala., I am fully convinced that it is not the Negroes of Alabama who want integration, but they are being pushed by the agents of the Communists.”
This June 9, 1963 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser has a cover story of “Wallace Plans Call for 500 Guardsmen”. Other cover articles include “JFK Woos Far West Negro Vote” and “Southerner Gives Threat of Filibuster”. Of particular interest on the front page is this announcement: “States Rights Party Slates Rally Tonight” where they will “outline a plan of action to stop all race-mixing in Alabama and win the struggle for the survival of our great white race.” The speakers, Dr. Edward R. Fields and J.B. Stoner are infamous Klansmen, one of which is STILL ACTIVE TODAY in white supremist and anti-Jewish doctrine.
This June 14, 1963 edition of The Montgomery Advertiser has cover stories relating to Civil Rights. One reads “Pastor Resigns Over Race Issue“. This article is about a Pastor “who recommended that his church admit Negroes to worship”. Most of the Deacons disagreed and the Pastor resigned “rather than tear up the church.”
This May 28, 1963 edition of The Selma Times-Journal shows the headline “JUDGE REFUSES TO ORDER BIRMINGHAM SCHOOL MIX“. Another article just below the headline reads “Jackson next for mass effort by Negro leaders“. Includes a very interesting Op/Ed piece titled “Uncle Tom, 1963 Model” which accuses Martin Luther King of “provoking violence” and states “…Dr. King is risking the worst interracial violence of modern times.”
This turbulent Civil Rights history is perfectly preserved in these headline articles.
Click HERE for 3 James Meredith signatures.
Click HERE for 1st edition of Meredith’s autobiography.
This May 28, 1963 edition of the Selma Times-Journal and September 11, 1964 edition of The Columbus Georgia Ledger contain multiple segregation era advertisements. Among them: “WHITE woman to do baby sitting in my home daily“. The other reads “WANTED: Settled colored woman for general house work on Florida coast. Summer months. Call 2-1332.”