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114   NOVA SCOTIA HISTORICAL SOCIETY.

possible recognition by the courts of the country soon caused serious depreciation in the value of slaves and rendered disposal of them in the home market difficult. At the close of the trial at Fredericton in 'Soo Judge Allen, who had "strenuously insisted that it is beyond the power of human laws to establish or justify" slavery, set at liberty his slaves, one of them a girl born in the East Indies and bought in New York from the master of a ship. This girl, having become free, married a man who had served in Colonel Allen's New Jersey regiment, and her descendants lived for many years in the employ of the family of her former master. Some other proprietors seem at the same time to have imitated Judge Allen's consistent action, while others, uncertain of the future, yet loth to relinquish their property, still retained their slaves, in hope of a change in their own favor.' Occasionally a determined man like Stair Agnew of Fredericton, or James DeLancey of Annapolis, both former Loyalist officers, made a brave fight with destiny, but results to them proved thoroughly disappointing. The policy of Chief-justices Osgoode, of Upper Canada; Monk, of Montreal ; Strange and Blowers of Nova Scotia ; and of Judge Allen and Ward Chipman of New Brunswick was to triumph. In the success of that policy, as has been elsewhere shown, probably no one of those named had been a greater factor than had Thomas Andrew Strange, though before the beginning of the century he had sailed with Clive for India.

The losses to the slave-owners proved in many cases serious. Tradition still presents in Cumberland the incident of an exchange of a slave for a horse, the slave soon learning the possibility of freedom and leaving his new master minus the value of the horse. Free to go or to

 

 

r Judge Allen is said to have become a correspondent of William Wilberforce.


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