Stunning: See bills of sale of individual slaves

The idea of selling people, as if they were just another parcel of property or a plow horse, is brought home in dramatic fashion by the Register of Deeds office of Buncombe County, North Carolina. See for yourself how individuals were described when they were bought and sold, often with little more than a first name, age and, even fewer times with a descriptive such as "wench."

The video goes into some detail about the project and the website gives further details. The slave deed records run from 1776 to 1865, and can be directly accessed by book and page number. Registration is required and specific browser requirements.

You can't come away from this without being moved by the reality, shame, cruelty and evil of slavery.

Grantor Grantee Slave Names Book Page
Dillard, Joshia Love, Thomas Jenny, Rose & David CMD1 2
Sams, Edmund Forster, William Sen Jane CMD1 2
Faine, Ebenezer Forster, William Unity CMD1 3
Ritchie, James Keith, Gabriel Tenor CMD1 5
Davidson, Thomas Alexander, Thomas Charles CMD1 21
Hill, Asaph Pinner, Burrel Kitty & child (Tom), Phillis & child (Charles), Rebecca & children (Harriet, Caroline, Alice, Gray & Jane), Charlotte & children (Hannah & Ruth), Penelope & child (Cecelia), Lavana, Lukewess, Nathan, Tom Habber, Lennel, Camel, George, Richard, Taneea, Lavern & Doll 22 409
*Please click here to download an excel (.csv) spreadsheet of the slave database above or click here for an excel (.xlsx) spreadsheet.

*The Register of Deeds would like thank the Center for Diversity Education for their help in the preparation of this information.

A fugitive slave plays and unexpected but important role in the War of 1812 in my historical novel, "Madness: The War of 1812" Order an autographed copy  from me at a large discount off the publisher's price. Go to

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