May 07, 2020 - Sale 2534

Sale 2534 - Lot 79

Price Realized: $ 11,250
?Final Price Realized includes Buyer’s Premium added to Hammer Price
Estimate: $ 4,000 - $ 6,000
(SLAVERY AND ABOLITION--JAMAICA.) An early account journal for a plantation estate on the southern coast of Jamaica. [2], 192 manuscript pages. Folio, 14 1/2 x 9 1/2 inches, contemporary vellum over boards, somewhat bowed and stained, backstrip starting; minimal wear and dampstaining to contents; early bookplate and later owner's signature on front pastedown. Vere Parish, Jamaica, 1775-86

Additional Details

An early Jamaica plantation account journal from Vere Parish, now in the southern part of Clarendon the island's southern coast. It begins with a copy of the 1745 appraisal of the estate of Tristam Raetcliff or Radcliff, with an appended inventory including a summary of 28 Negroes. The unusually legible and tidy account entries which follow were apparently kept by the trustees for the estate, many of them relating to Exeter Plantation in Vere, known to have remained in the Radcliff family through at least the 1820s. Several other plantations are named, including Carver's and Tom King's. Many of the journal entries relate to the enslaved people on the plantation. A few examples from just the early part of the book include: Purchase of "20 new Negroes" from Foord & Delpratt (page 3) Account for the "rent of 28 Negroes" dating back to 1764 (7) Capture of "Candis a runaway Negroe" in 1767 (11) and payment of a doctor for "medicines & attendance on Negroes" at Exeter Plantation (13). An entry on page 90 covers "the hire of 15 Negroes," deducting "the amount of the following 3 Negroes dead . . . Will £80, Patience £60, Mulatto Betsy £90." The large majority of the entries were written during the American Revolution. A lost ship full of sugar from 1775 is detailed on page 92: "On her springing a leak in a gale of wind, she was oblig'd to put into South Carolina, where she was seized & made a prize by the Americans." The volume offers an uncommon degree of insight into Jamaican plantation life.