In her new book “Institutional Slavery: Slaveholding Churches, Schools, Colleges, and Businesses in Virginia, 1680-1860,” Bloomsburg University historian Jennifer Oast examines the largely untold story of southern institutions that owned slaves, including church congregations, universities, free schools, and large industries. This excerpt1Excerpt from Institutional Slavery: Slaveholding Churches, Schools, Colleges, and Businesses in Virginia, 1680–1860 by Jennifer Oast. Condensed and reprinted with permission from Cambridge University Press. Please see www.cambridge.org for more information. from Institutional Slavery takes us into the surreal world of slave-owning Presbyterian congregations in Prince Edward County, Virginia.

In 1766, the Presbyterian dissenters of Prince Edward County in Virginia, a group of prosperous farmers and tradesmen, confronted a serious problem. They had difficulty retaining a minister for their church, Briery Presbyterian, in part because they had so little to offer as a salary. Virginia Presbyterianism em-erged as an important evangelical rival to Anglicanism—the established church —in the mid-eighteenth century. Before the American Revolution, religious dissenters like the Presbyterians were still required to tithe to the Anglican parish in which they lived. The parish vestry employed these tithes to support the minister of the Church of England, maintain the parish church buildings, and care for the poor, but nothing was set aside to support dissenting groups like the Presbyterians. Therefore, the leaders of Briery Presbyterian, many of whom were slave owners, looked to their own experience, as well as the example of other early Virginia institutions, to find a solution to their church’s financial constraints. They decided to raise money through subscription for a permanent endowment which would be invested in slaves. The annual hire of these church-owned slaves, “and their increase … forever hereafter,” would pay the minister’s salary and fund other needs of the church, such as building maintenance.2Session Book of Briery Church, Vol. I, 1760-1840, 9, Manuscript Collections, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia. For the next one hundred years, the members of Briery Presbyterian were the beneficiaries of the labor of these slaves and their descendants.

The Briery congregants were not the only Presbyterians to use slavery to benefit their church; other Virginia Presbyterian churches were following the same path in the second half of the eighteenth century, particularly in the area surrounding Hampden-Sydney College, the Presbyterians’ first institution of higher education in Virginia. All of these Presbyterian congregations were following the example set by Anglican parishes, as well as that of other institutions, such as free schools and colleges, in using corporate slave ownership to benefit their organizations. The case of slave-owning Presbyterian churches is a significant variant of institutional slavery because it created significant controversy in some of the congregations which owned slaves in the nineteenth century. While this practice reflected the larger slave society around them, slave-owning by the congregations was opposed by varying degrees by some of the members and ministers. It was, however, so deeply embedded in Presbyterian culture and economy by the antebellum period that it was very hard for many churches to rid themselves of the practice despite the controversy. Nonetheless, there are few examples of other slaveholding institutions questioning their ownership of slaves in the way that the Presbyterians did in the nineteenth century.

Soon after the close of the American Revolution, antislavery Presbyterians attempted to fight the institution within the church. In May 1787, for example, a committee at a meeting of the Synod of New York and Philadelphia, the highest governing body for the Presbyterian Church in the United States during this period, urged “in the warmest terms to every member of their body and to all the Churches and families under their care, to do every thing in their power consistent with the rights of civil Society to promote the abolition of Slavery, and the instruction of Negroes whether bond or free.”3Guy S. Klett, ed., Minutes of the Presbyterian Church in America, 1706-1788 (Philadelphia: Presbyterian Historical Society, 1976), 627. The committee’s proposal, however, was deemed too strong. The statement on slavery that the synod approved was thoroughly watered down. While it saluted “the general principles in favor of universal Liberty that prevail in America; and the interest which many of the States have taken in promoting the abolition of Slavery,” it called on Presbyterians only to prepare their slaves for eventual freedom by educating them and to give those slaves who seemed capable of self-government the opportunity to buy their own freedom “at a moderate rate.” The revised statement concluded with a recommendation that members “use the most prudent measures consistent with the interests & the state of civil Society … to procure eventually the final abolition of Slavery in America.”4Klett, Minutes of the Presbyterian Church in America, 629. See also Jewel L. Spangler, “Proslavery Presbyterians: Virginia’s Conservative Dissenters in the Age of Revolution,” Journal of Presbyterian History 78, no. 2 (2000): 111-23, especially 112-133. Incapable of calling for an immediate end to slavery, the national Presbyterian Church struck a careful tone in its resolution, attempting to appease both northern and southern members.

In the late eighteenth century, the proslavery movement within the Presbyterian Church continued to strengthen, particularly in the South. For example, in 1795 the church leadership refused to discipline slave-owning members but rather advised Presbyterians to “live in charity and peace” with each other despite differences over slavery.5American Presbyterian Church. “Presbyterian Church History: the North-South Schism of 1861.” www.americanpresbyterianchurch.org/the_north-south_schism_of_1861.htm. The conflict was inevitable, though; many individuals, both inside and outside of the South, had come to believe that slavery was wrong, due to the influence of Revolutionary rhetoric that said all men were equal, as well as Great Awakening ideas that the souls of all men and women were equally precious in the sight of God. The presence of slaves as church members may also have influenced many white Presbyterians to oppose slavery.

In 1818, the General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church adopted a statement on slavery that carefully walked the tightrope of sentiment between abolitionist and proslavery members of the church. On the one hand, the statement called

Briery_Church_Prince_Edward_County_Virginia_by_Frances_Benjamin_Johnston
Briery Presbyterian Church, c. 1930

slavery “a gross violation of the most precious and sacred rights of human nature; as utterly inconsistent with the law of God, which requires us to love our neighbor as ourselves [Matthew 22:39] and as totally irreconcilable with the spirit and principles of the gospel of Christ.” It also called for the abolition of slavery and for improving the social and economic conditions of African Americans, both free and enslaved.6James H. Smylie, “The Bible, Race, and the Changing South,” Journal of Presbyterian History, 59 (1981): 199-200. On the other hand, in this statement the General Assembly also advised against the harsh censure or formal discipline of slave-owning church members. The resolution not only showed “a tender concern for the feelings of slaveholders” but also “sought to deal with the practical difficulties of slaveholders and expressed deep sympathy for them.”7Andrew E. Murray, Presbyterians and the Negro: a History (Philadelphia: Presbyterian Historical Society 1966), 26-27. Concerned that immediate and total emancipation of slaves in the South would lead to chaos, the writers of the resolution also called for gradual emancipation and promoted the American Colonization Society (ACS) as a possible solution to the South’s problem with slavery. The General Assembly, in adopting the resolution, sought to please both sides in this contentious national debate.8Ibid., 26-27.

It is in this larger context of tension and indecision over slavery in the national Presbyterian Church that the slave-owning congregations of Prince Edward County experienced local conflict over slavery. Slave-owning congregations were particularly offensive to those opposed to slavery because anti-slavery whites who refused to own slaves would still benefit indirectly from the slavery if an endowment made up of slaves supported their churches. Even some Presbyterians who believed that slavery itself was acceptable argued that congregations should not own slaves because churches, as corporate bodies rather than individuals, could not provide adequate paternal care for and supervision over their slaves.

Suggestively, the first record of Briery Presbyterian’s discomfort with slaveholding appears in the church’s session book of the church on 20 March 1819, just months after the national church made its compromise-driven statement on slavery. At a meeting of the church elders, “a motion was made to change the fund of the congregation by the sale of the slaves now belonging to it; and after some discussion it was determined to submit the subject to a committee.”9Session Book of Briery Church, 30. The arguments for

john-paxton
John Paxton
RG 414, Presbyterian Historical Society, Philadelphia, PA

this proposed change in the church endowment were not recorded, but church members may have been influenced by the recent condemnation of slavery by the Synod. However, it is important to note that the motion was made to sell the church’s slaves, not to free them. The church elders were not willing to part wholly with their valuable endowment; their interest in selling the slaves would have been to remove the stain of slave ownership from the congregation or perhaps to improve the slaves’ standard of living and spiritual development by turning them over to Christian masters. Whatever the motivation for the motion, it failed; nothing was done to change the situation of the slaves at that time.

Four years later, Cumberland Presbyterian Church was challenged by a larger controversy over slavery. In 1823 the Reverend John D. Paxton accepted the position of minister to the Cumberland and College Church congregations. Paxton later recalled, “The congregation owned a number of slaves, who were hired out annually, and the proceeds applied to pay the salary of their pastor…. On finding that my support was drawn almost entirely from these slaves, for whose instruction very little was done, I felt more and more uneasy, and desired much to do something for them.10J. D. Paxton, A Memoir of J.D. Paxton, D.D. Late of Princeton, Indiana (Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott, 1870), 73. Also see Ernest Trice Thompson, Presbyterians in the South, Vol. 1: 1607-1861 (Richmond: John Knox Press, 1968), 337. Paxton first tried—with no success—to organize a chapter of the American Colonization Society among the members of his congregation. His attempts to even raise money for the society were resented by members of his church, perhaps because one of his aims was to use the funds to free the church’s slaves and send them to Africa, in keeping with the mission of the ACS.11J. D. Paxton, Letters on Slavery; Addressed to the Cumberland Congregation, Virginia (Lexington, KY: Abraham T. Skillman, 1833), 11. A recent study that emphasizes the American Colonization Society’s importance in nineteenth-century culture and politics is Eric Burin, Slavery and the Peculiar Solution: A History of the American Colonization Society (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2005).
Because of Paxton’s goal for the liberation of the congregation’s slaves, church members were suspicious when Paxton freed his own slaves and sent them to Liberia in 1826. He had become an unwilling slaveholder when his father-in-law gave slaves to Paxton’s wife. Paxton later stated that he kept the slaves just long enough to prepare them for freedom and then paid their passage to Liberia. He wrote that he felt it was hypocritical for a minister to own slaves and that his congregants would feel justified in owning slaves if he did. The freeing of his own slaves made it possible for him to speak out against slavery.12Paxton, Letters on Slavery, 4-5.

slaves-awaiting-sale
Slaves Waiting for Sale: Richmond, Virginia. Painting based on an 1853 sketch

A few months after Paxton freed his slaves, he published an anti-slavery piece in a religious newspaper called The Family Visitor. This article was the beginning of the end of his pastoral work in the South. A few years later in 1833, in a published letter to his former congregation meant to explain his part in the contention that followed, Paxton asserted that he preferred to publish his view on slavery rather than preach it from the pulpit because “[t]here were … usually a few slaves in our worshiping assemblies, and I thought such discussions not prudent before them.” He further argued that few African Americans could read or would have access to The Family Visitor, making this publication a safe and discreet way for him to share his antislavery argument with his fellow Presbyterians.13Paxton, Letters on Slavery, 12. However, many in his congregation were upset by the article, resulting in a request for his resignation. Paxton sold his land at a loss and moved north with his family, where he continued to serve as a Presbyterian minister until his death after the Civil War. George Bourne, a Presbyterian clergyman who was barred from the ministry because of his own antislavery views, later wrote that Paxton, “for complying with the recommendation of the General Assembly, was driven from his pastoral charge amid universal hatred.”14George Bourne, Picture of Slavery in the United States of America (Middletown, CT: Hunt, 1834), 192.

“Universal hatred” was not entirely correct, though; at least one of Paxton’s church members, a young Hampden-Sydney student named Jonathan Cable, was looking on with sympathy. A New York native, Cable studied at Union Theological Seminary (then a part of Hampden-Sydney) between 1828 and1831 and was there just when the Paxton controversy was

birthplace
“The Birthplace” (c. 1750) — outbuilding in which Hampden–Sydney College was founded at Slate Hill Plantation.

at its highest pitch. Cable later wrote in detail about the slaves owned by the Cumberland and College Church congregations: “The worst kind of slavery is jobbing slavery, that is, the hiring out of slaves from year to year. What shocked me more than anything was that the church engaged in this jobbing business. The college church which I attended … held slaves enough to pay their pastor … $1,000 a year. The slaves, who had been left to the church by some pious mother in Israel, had increased so as to be a large and still increasing fund. They were hired out on Christmas day of each year, the day in which they celebrate the birth of our blessed Saviour, to the highest bidder. There were four other churches near the college that supported the pastor, in whole or in part, in the same way.”15Eggleston, “Presbyterian Churches,” 345. Cable felt that the worst part of the church’s system of financial support was not even the slavery itself, but the way the slaves were hired out from year to year. “Jobbing” slavery, as Cable put it, was particularly inhumane.

While Paxton was struggling with the issue of slavery in the 1820s, the minister of Briery Presbyterian Church, James W. Douglas, was reflecting on some of his members’ dissatisfaction with slave-owning by their church. In December 1828 he published A Manual For the Members of the Briery Presbyterian Church, Virginia, which included an account of the church’s early history. Concerning the founders’ decision to invest its endowment in slaves, Douglas wrote, “In the appropriation of their funds many will think they erred; but it was the error of the age in which they lived, and their names and motives should be respected by their descendants.16Douglas, A Manual for the Members of Briery Presbyterian Church, 3-4. Who were the “many” who felt their ancestors “erred” in choosing to buy slaves for the benefit of the congregation? Douglas must have been referring to members of his congregation—for whom this book was intended—who opposed slavery, or at least to institutional slaveholding by their church. Douglas calls this “the error of the age in which they lived,” thinking back to the pre-Revolutionary era, a time before slavery was widely questioned and when the founders of the church had few doubts about the morality of using slavery to support their pious designs. By instructing his antislavery members to still respect the “names and motives” of their forbears, Douglas was following the example of the national church in trying to strike a charitable balance between opposing sides of this increasingly contentious issue.

Douglas was followed in the pulpit by William Hill, who came to Briery Presbyterian in the mid-1830s when the question of slave owning by local congregations was still very contentious. In his 1851 autobiography, Hill recounted why his time at Briery was so brief: “I had various reasons for staying in Briery so short a time… But a more urgent reason, was the state of slavery, as connicted [sic] with this cong’n. Their minister was supported by a fund which consisted of Slaves, who were

american-colonization-certificate
American Colonization Society Certificate

hired out from year to year, to the highest bidder, which I considered the worst kind of slavery.”17Hill, Autobiographical Sketches of Dr. William Hill, 98. Like Jonathan Cable, his chief concern was the particularly cruel nature of institutional slavery where slaves were hired out on annual contracts.
Hill explained in his autobiography that one of the primary reasons he accepted the call to minister at Briery was his desire to “ameliorate the state of slavery, especially with those who belonged to Briery.”18Ibid., 99. He recollected that he spent half of every Sunday ministering specifically to slaves. He was not just concerned for the spiritual welfare of the slaves, however; Hill also tried to convince the leaders of Briery congregation to free their slaves or at least improve their condition. Hill recalled that he “used all prudent exertions to induce the Elders to agree either to liberate them & give them up to the colonization [sic] Society to send to Africa; or to let them choose for themselves some humane master & sell them, that they might have some permanent residence which they might call their home. One of the Elders cheerfully agreed to liberate them & send them to Africa, but the Majority were bitterly opposed to making any change. This fixed my determination to remain there no longer.”19Ibid., 99-100. Hill felt that even if the church was unwilling to liberate its slaves (thereby destroying its endowment), the slaves would benefit if the church at least sold them to masters of their own choosing. In 1835, while William Hill was the minister at Briery, Cumberland Presbyterian did sell its slaves; Hill was on the committee that oversaw this process. He persuaded the committee to allow the slaves to choose their own masters, “much to the satisfaction of the slaves & and the congregation.”20Ibid., 99-101. William Hill was not an abolitionist, and he did not call for the slaves to be freed unless they were going to be sent to Africa through the efforts of the American Colonization Society. He understood slavery “as a Christian relation with particular duties and responsibilities” for both masters and slaves.21Ambrose, “Of Stations and Relations,” 49. Hill was a paternalist—he believed that slavery was ordained by God as part of the natural order of mankind—but he also worked to see that masters upheld their responsibilities to their slaves.

William Hill and others who otherwise accepted slavery opposed institutional slavery precisely because it did not conform to the church’s own standards for slaveholding. The concerns of these ministers and some of their congregants over slave holding by their church illustrate how institutional slaveholding could strengthen an institution economically while at the same time weaken and divide it philosophically and morally; this was a paradox of institutional slavery.

The controversial nature of institutional slave ownership among the Presbyterians was most evident in 1845 and 1846, when the Briery congregation again debated the question of selling its slaves. A committee ultimately decided that the congregation would not do so. However, those committee members who disagreed with that decision submitted a “Minority Report to Briery Congregation” the following May in which they laid out the reasons they wished to see the congregation’s

jonathan-cable
Jonathan Cable (top right) and Levi Coffin with unknown group.
Used by permission from Cable descendent Sylvia Rummel.

slaves sold. In this remarkable document, pen-ned by prominent local slaveholder Asa Dupuy, the first argument against congregational slave ownership concerned the unstable family life of the slaves. Dupuy asserted that the state of “the slaves in the hands of good and humane masters would be better than it is, at present. We believe their present condition is unfavorable to their moral and religious Character, with their family Connections formed one year in One neighborhood and the next be removed so far that they can but seldom visit (or be visited by) their families and in that way liable to have them broken up, and new Connections formed.”22“Minority Report of Briery Congregation,” 15 May 1846, Eggleston Family Papers, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond, Virginia. Because the Briery slaves (like many other institutional slaves) were hired out to the highest bidder at the beginning of every year, they frequently changed homes, making it very difficult to form lasting relationships. In particular, the committee members were probably concerned about the marital relationships among the slaves. These marriages, though not honored by the law, were still promoted by many in society (especially sincere Christians) as morally important for slaves. All slaves were in danger of being separated from their spouses through the whim of a master, but slaves who were hired out yearly by an institution had to anticipate separation as an annual occurrence. What hope did those slaves really have of maintaining monogamous relationships when they knew they might never live in the same place twice? This put the church in the awkward situation of fostering marital infidelity among its slaves.

The “Minority Report” also ad-dressed the physical well-being of Briery’s slaves. The committee members were concerned that the slaves were “but seldom so well attended to in sickness & frequently not well, clothing etc. as they would be by their own masters if kind and humane. With regard to increase they certainly have not increased in the same ratio that other negroes have which we think is probly [sic] owing to the want of attention which it would be the interest as well as the duty of masters to give to the Children of their Slaves.”23“Minority Report of Briery Congregation.” This concern reflects what was conventional wisdom among the slaveholders—that those who hired slaves did not take as good care of them as their owners did; hirers simply lacked the long-term financial interest to do so. English-born observer Frances Anne Kemble commented, “This hiring out of negroes is a horrid aggravation of the miseries of their condition; for if, on the plantations, and under the masters to whom they belong, their labor is severe and their food inadequate, think what it must be when they are hired out for a stipulated sum to a temporary employer, who has not even the interest which it is pretended an owner may feel in the welfare of his slaves, but whose chief aim it must necessarily be to get as much out of them, and expend as little on them, as possible.”24Frances Anne Kemble, Journal of a Residence on a Georgia Plantation in 1838-1839 (New York, 1864), 70-71. In other words, the more that hirers could skimp on food, clothing, and medical care for their hired slaves, the greater would be the return on their short-term investment in slave labor. As Kemble’s observations indicate, some of the problems faced by Briery slaves were common to all slaves who were hired out by their owners, whether the owner was an individual or an institution.

back-to-africa

Significantly, those who hired the Briery slaves likely were least interested in maintaining the welfare of the young children of the women they hired and in easing the workload of an enslaved woman who became pregnant or gave birth during the period of her hire. An individual owner of a new slave mother might give her more food, more time to rest and to nurse an infant, and lighter duties, looking forward to the long-term benefit of owning another slave; the short-term cost in the lost productivity of the mother would have been more than paid for by the future productivity of the child. However, for the person who hired a slave, there was no long-term interest in either the slave or her children; there was only the gain to be made that year and the financial requirement that the woman not only make back the money spent on her but also bring in as much profit as possible. An individual master probably would not have hired out a pregnant woman or new mother to begin with; the church, however, had no “home” in which to keep slave mothers and their very young children during this most vulnerable time—all had to be put out someplace every year, from the youngest infant to the most elderly slave. It was the permanency of the hireling status that made the situation of Briery slaves different from most hired slaves; they shared common problems like separation from family and shoddy treatment by hirers, but these problems were exacerbated for institutional slaves because they could expect this status for their entire lives.

JJ-Smith-Plantation
Slaves on J. J. Smith’s cotton plantation near Beaufort, South Carolina, photographed by Timothy O’Sullivan standing before their quarters in 1862

The committee members worried that their slave women did not have as many children as other slaves did, and the churchmen attributed this problem to the lack of care that those who hired the Briery’s bondpeople provided. However, the women’s lower fertility rate might also be connected to the committee’s other concern over family relationships. If an enslaved woman was separated from her husband for long periods of time, it does indeed seem less likely that she would have many children, unless she was willing and able to form new “connections” (or they were forced on her). Thus, the church members were faced with two unpleasant alternatives when they hired out their slaves separately from their spouses. If the slaves were unfaithful to their spouses and created new relationships, the church was abetting adultery, but if the slaves stayed true to their spouses, they would not have as many children, which was a financial disadvantage to the church.

The remainder of the “Minority Report” examines the financial effects of selling the slaves and addresses some of the congregation’s worries on that point. The committee members argued in the report that the slaves at that time earned

Fanny-Kemble
Engraving of Frances Anne Kemble by Johnson Wilson, & Co. after painting by Alonzo Chappel after painting
by Sir Thomas Lawrence, 1872

about $450.00 per annum. The committee believed the slaves would sell for about $10,000.00 and that, therefore, if the church could lend the money at six percent interest, it would actually make a greater profit, about $600.00 per year. The committee also discussed what must have been a persuasive argument the previous year against selling the slaves: if the endowment were turned into money, it would be easier for the trustees of the fund to dip into the principal, rather than just spending the interest. Slaves were more difficult to “spend” than cash, of course. The “Minority Report” countered this concern by arguing for strict oversight of the funds by a group of trustees.25“Minority-Report of Briery Congregation.”

The “Minority Report to Briery Congregation” is an important window into the minds of Presbyterians who were opposed to slave-owning by their church. Unlike John Paxton, Asa Dupuy, the document’s author, was not opposed to slavery, but was, in fact, a substantial slave-owner himself. As the report’s language indicates, Dupuy, like William Hill, believed that slavery was acceptable when the slaveholder was a “kind and humane” master. It was not slavery itself that concerned Dupuy, but rather the significant problems connected with institutional slavery at his own church. Dupuy was a thoughtful and reasonable man, as well as a consequential figure in Prince Edward County. He was a trustee of Hampden-Sydney College, and served for thirteen years in the Virginia legislature.26Bradshaw, History of Prince Edward County, 157, 687. He has been described as a “cool head during the Nat Turner crisis and friendly neighbor” to the free blacks of Prince Edward County.27Ely, Israel on the Appomattox, 209. He wanted to preserve slavery but showed real interest and concern for slaves and free blacks; for example, historian Melvin P. Ely states that “Asa Dupuy stands out among white citizens in Prince Edward in recognizing slaves’ surnames.”28Ibid., 300. Dupuy seems to have been a sincere paternalist. He be-lieved in the morality—or at least the necessity—of slavery, but he was truly interested in the welfare of the African Americans around him. As a defender of slavery, however, he needed to find ways to justify it in his own mind as well as to the abolitionists who were steadily becoming more vociferous.

One of the primary de-fenses of slavery was that slaves benefitted profoundly by having a master rather than just an employer, because a good and reasonable master would have a personal financial interest in their welfare. This supposedly

visit-from-old-mistress-winslow-homer
A Visit from the Old Mistress by Winslow Homer, 1876. From Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

put slaves in a better condition than the so-called wage slaves of the North to which pro-slavery apologists so frequently referred. Yet how could Dupuy and other thoughtful southerners like him make this argument when there were examples like Briery right before them? The Briery slaves were in the hands of a committee with no personal stake in their welfare. In addition, they were hired out every year, with the troubling effects noted in Dupuy’s “Minority Report.” Slave hiring was common in Virginia after the American Revolution, but what made the Briery situation fundamentally different and ultimately more damning was that these slaves lacked an owner’s self-interested de-sire to make certain that they were cared for by those who hired them. A committee of trustees (driven only by loyalty to the church, not self-interest) could not replace an owner. Jonathan D. Martin has described slave hiring in the American South as a three-part arrangement that slaves could sometimes use to their advantage when they played off the interests of their owner and their hirer.29Jonathan D. Martin, Divided Mastery: Slave Hiring in the American South (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2004), 43-49. In the case of institutional slavery, the “owner” leg of this triangle was inherently weak, leaving institutional slaves in a more precarious situation than slaves who were hired out by individual masters. For all these reasons, the paternalist defense of slavery fell apart in the presence of slaves owned by the church. Men of conscience like Dupuy had to oppose slave owning by their churches if they were to defend the institution of slavery at all.

Endnotes   [ + ]

1. Excerpt from Institutional Slavery: Slaveholding Churches, Schools, Colleges, and Businesses in Virginia, 1680–1860 by Jennifer Oast. Condensed and reprinted with permission from Cambridge University Press. Please see www.cambridge.org for more information.
2. Session Book of Briery Church, Vol. I, 1760-1840, 9, Manuscript Collections, Library of Virginia, Richmond, Virginia.
3. Guy S. Klett, ed., Minutes of the Presbyterian Church in America, 1706-1788 (Philadelphia: Presbyterian Historical Society, 1976), 627.
4. Klett, Minutes of the Presbyterian Church in America, 629. See also Jewel L. Spangler, “Proslavery Presbyterians: Virginia’s Conservative Dissenters in the Age of Revolution,” Journal of Presbyterian History 78, no. 2 (2000): 111-23, especially 112-133.
5. American Presbyterian Church. “Presbyterian Church History: the North-South Schism of 1861.” www.americanpresbyterianchurch.org/the_north-south_schism_of_1861.htm.
6. James H. Smylie, “The Bible, Race, and the Changing South,” Journal of Presbyterian History, 59 (1981): 199-200.
7. Andrew E. Murray, Presbyterians and the Negro: a History (Philadelphia: Presbyterian Historical Society 1966), 26-27.
8. Ibid., 26-27.
9. Session Book of Briery Church, 30.
10. J. D. Paxton, A Memoir of J.D. Paxton, D.D. Late of Princeton, Indiana (Philadelphia: J.B. Lippincott, 1870), 73. Also see Ernest Trice Thompson, Presbyterians in the South, Vol. 1: 1607-1861 (Richmond: John Knox Press, 1968), 337.
11. J. D. Paxton, Letters on Slavery; Addressed to the Cumberland Congregation, Virginia (Lexington, KY: Abraham T. Skillman, 1833), 11. A recent study that emphasizes the American Colonization Society’s importance in nineteenth-century culture and politics is Eric Burin, Slavery and the Peculiar Solution: A History of the American Colonization Society (Gainesville: University Press of Florida, 2005).
12. Paxton, Letters on Slavery, 4-5.
13. Paxton, Letters on Slavery, 12.
14. George Bourne, Picture of Slavery in the United States of America (Middletown, CT: Hunt, 1834), 192.
15. Eggleston, “Presbyterian Churches,” 345.
16. Douglas, A Manual for the Members of Briery Presbyterian Church, 3-4.
17. Hill, Autobiographical Sketches of Dr. William Hill, 98.
18. Ibid., 99.
19. Ibid., 99-100.
20. Ibid., 99-101.
21. Ambrose, “Of Stations and Relations,” 49.
22. “Minority Report of Briery Congregation,” 15 May 1846, Eggleston Family Papers, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond, Virginia.
23. “Minority Report of Briery Congregation.”
24. Frances Anne Kemble, Journal of a Residence on a Georgia Plantation in 1838-1839 (New York, 1864), 70-71.
25. “Minority-Report of Briery Congregation.”
26. Bradshaw, History of Prince Edward County, 157, 687.
27. Ely, Israel on the Appomattox, 209.
28. Ibid., 300.
29. Jonathan D. Martin, Divided Mastery: Slave Hiring in the American South (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2004), 43-49.