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Mucco's, Coromanties, &c. they commonly set. forth, that they are from the best country, the Gold Coast, or Angola &c. for there is a vast difference in the tempers and dispositions of the negroes, according to the coasts they come froin. Until the day of fase they are kept on board in the harbour; during which time the master, mate and doctor, (for every ship has a quack,on board) use every art to set them off to the best advantage; the grey hairs and beards of the old men and women are cut and shaved, and not only their skins, but that of the whole cargo, are rubbed with palm and other oils : so that a person who is not a judge may purchase an old Nave for a young one, a distempered boy or girl for one healthy and stout. .About eight or nine o'clock every morning they are mustered on deck, and are obliged to jump and dance and roar loudly for half an hour, obedient to the failors, who chastise those who are sick or lazy.
Several of thofe poor creatures, heart broken at their fate, die daily; and least any report should circulate of the cargo's being sickly, to hurt the sale, the dead bodies are concealed in the hold until night, and given to the sharks, which devour them in a trice: when there are many Guinea ships in the harbour, the fish fare well.
On the day of sale they are exposed on board as they came into the world, or at the merchants ftore to whom they are consigned: the planters,
overseers &c. attend, and pick and chuse them in like manner as if sheep or oxen; and grabble, grasp and joftle each other to get the best. The terms of sale are commonly six months credit ; a prime fave will cost about 43 or 441. sterling. New negroes foon learn to be as handy as Creoles, though Creoles think themselves superior to them because they have more savy, or knowledge of the country.
The common mode of dicipline on a plantation is as follows: In the morning about half an hour after four the bell is rung to order them out to labour; at the dawn of day the book. keeper calls the lift, and every slave who is abfent is paid with a few stripes afterwards. As soon as they come into the field, they deliver to the cooks, each a small earthen or metal
and calabash, with something or other to prepare for breakfast (there are commonly two or three invalid women appointed for cooks, and to carry water). About nine o'clock, when called to breakfast, they all fit in the field where their different pots have been boiled, at which time à curious variety of eatables are displayed: vegetables of one kind or other relished with “ mash mash,” or rotten herrings. In about ten or fifteen minutes they are roused by the crack of the drivers whip, and fall to work, and continue until twelve; at which time the bell is rung; they then disperse about the country to pick or gather grass and vines for the overseers horses and swine ; about forty-five minutes after one, the bell is rung to order them out; and every one who is not in the field precisely at two, gets a certain number of lashes, by the direction of the book-keeper, who attends to call the lift. Here I must observe, that it is very imprudent for an overseer to invest his bookkeepers with power to order a negroe more than one or two lashes in the course of a day.
horses rains backside
At night the negroes are obliged to pick up grass and vines in like manner as at noon, and to assemble at the Overseer's house; about cight o'clock the list is called, and he or she who has not brought a proper sizeable bundle gets a few stripes.
When any of them are disappointed in procuring their bundle, they commonly absent themselves to thun the rod, which is often the case in dry weather, particularly on lowland plantations; next day they fly to some of the Overseer's intimates, to beg for them; others, not so knowing, after they remain in the canes for two or three days, fearful of returning, least they are paid with double severity, fly to the mountains, and seek shelter in the caverns of rocks for months together. By such impositions, and harsh treatment of Overseers, masters are deprived of the labour of many fine flaves; and often too, when most needed ; nay, and sometimes loose them all together; for being exposed to the heavy rains and hunger, subjects them to lock-jaws and other diseases, and to occasion speedy and inevitable death.
It fometimes but not frequently happens, that those unhappy wretches, in a 'ftate of ftarvation, grow, desperate at their fate, and resolve to redress their wrongs,' and gain their freedom, or to perish in the conteft; they form themselves into ftrong parties, kill 'their taskmasters, and burn and destroy houses and canes; and at the last, when they are too clofely pursued,' kill themselves also; náy, it frequently happens, when Naves are too cruelly treated, after their supplicating the Deity in the most humble and affecting manner, “ Oh! good God in a top ?-O! good God of ebrey. world !-look down and pity your "poor black negroe,”--that they hang themselves, cut their throats, or ftab themselves. I shall mention one inftance of a fierce and heroic spirit in a rude uncultivated plave, for I was present at the time.
Hector was head-cooper on a plantation in the parish of Clarendon, and was remarked for being a handy good workman ;; but not haying made the number of puncheons according to the talk the Overseer had imposed on him, he was tied, hands and feet, to a ladder, and flogged severely : sometime after, when he was at work, the Overseer came to mortify him, saying, “ You black scoundrel, I'll cut your
backside to pieces: if you don't;, make more puncheons ;" the other replied, “Hecta don's regard him life--kill Hecta one time." “ Hecta nebba will make puncheon for you, Obijhai"? At which he took the axe in his left hand, and with a stroke chopped off his right hand ! What must the feelings and agitations of poor Hector's heart have been to commit such a desperate act on himself? What a brave general, or valiant admiral, might that man have made, had his intellects been properly cultivated from his youth, and trained to the army or navy
“ Full many a gem of purest ray serene,
66 The dark unfathom'd caves of ocean bear : « Full many'a flower is born to blush unseen,
“ And waste its sweetness on the desert air."
On Sundays they are obliged to work all day in their grounds ; the book-keepers attend, and those who are absent, without permission, are flogged on Monday morning: this is certainly breaking the fourth commandment to all intents and purposes; for it is not done out of necessity, like taking an ox or a cow out of a pit, but it is done through griping avarice. It is well for the poor creatures that the days are not so long as in Europe ; for if they were eighteen hours, I believe they would be obliged to work twenty. Again, it is well for them that the climate is warm, and that Nature is bountiful in producing fruit and vegetables, even on