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David Brown, 1786-1875
The Planter, or, Thirteen Years in the South by a Northern Man
Philadelphia: H. Hooker, 1853.


David Brown was born in 1786. Initially sympathetic to the abolitionists when he lived in Delaware, his disdain for slavery changed during a visit to Charleston, South Carolina. While there, he became a proponent of slavery and a virulent enemy of what he considered the naive opinions of northern abolitionists. His book The Planter: Thirteen Years in the South by a Northern Man (1853) attempts to present the "reality" of southern slavery.

Published in 1853, The Planter describes slave life as happy and comfortable. During his trip to Charleston, he observed their relationship to their owners, the quality of their living quarters, their education in the Christian religion, and even the benefits of living in the temperate climate of the southern United States. Brown also includes chapters that describe other world regions where he believed conditions to be worse than those of southern slaves. Brown's arguments respond primarily to Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin, which was published a year before The Planter.

Harris Henderson

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