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John Andrew Jackson
The Experience of a Slave in South Carolina
London: Passmore & Alabaster, 1862.


The Experience of a Slave in South Carolina (1862) documents John Andrew Jackson's experiences as a slave and his escape into Canada. The early chapters offer his impressions of the family who owned him. He describes several examples of their cruelty and dishonesty. He then shifts to a more general account of his experiences as a young slave, describing his labors as a field hand and the punishment applied to those who failed to do "adequate work." He also tells the story of his escape to Charleston over the three-day Christmas holiday given to the slaves. Once in Charleston, he worked on the wharf before boarding a vessel bound for Boston. After briefly describing his time aboard the vessel and his settling in Salem, Massachusetts, Jackson tells more about his experiences during slavery. He closes his narrative with some popular slave and anti-slavery songs. Jackson also includes several testimonials to prove he wrote the narrative in good faith.

See also the entry for John Andrew Jackson from the Black Abolitionist Papers, available on this site.

Harris Henderson

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