13Abraham Jones' Back Yard “We had neither bedsteads, nor furniture of any description. Our beds were collections of straw and old rags, thrown down in the corners and boxed in with boards; a single blanket the only covering.”
14Five Generations at the Smith Plantation “The wind whistled and the rain and snow blew in through the cracks, and the damp earth soaked in the moisture till the floor was miry as a pig- sty.”
15A Slave Cabin in Barbour County, near Eufala, Alabama “Such were our houses. In these wretched hovels were we penned at night, and fed by day; here were the children born and the sick- - neglected.”
16Muzzle used to prevent slave from eating or drinking too much.
17Slave Collarc. 1840The sound of this belled collar made any slave wearing it easier to locate. Resourceful slaves silenced the bells by stuffing them with mud.
18Wilson Chin, a branded slave in chains with various torture devices
19Rev. Thomas Johnson, who spent 28 years as a slave, holding the type of whip and chains that were used on him during his captivity.
21For a slave’s first runaway attempt, the slave would be punished most often with anywhere from 30 to 50 whip lashes. For a second, unsuccessful attempt of running away, the most common punishment of the slave would be detention for several days, during which time the slave was not allowed to work. The detention center would often be the plantation hospital, where the slave’s legs were shackled between two beams of a bed. Slaves particularly dreaded this form of punishment, as it removed the slaves from any form of communication with their peersFor slaves who were returned to their plantations after their third, fourth, or subsequent runaway attempt would face severe punishment, where whipping was just a beginning to the punishment techniques used against the slaves. Plantation owners would often give these slaves “la chaîne”, also known as “l’empêtre”, “le collier”, and/or “le nabot”, described below
221. “la chaîne”, also known as “l’empêtre” were shackles of about three feet long, to which two rings either closed with a padlock or hinges were added. The lower area of the slaves’ legs were put in these shackles. The shackles were not heavy enough to prevent the slave from walking, but slowed the slave down immensely in his/her movement. If the slave master felt that the shackles were not heavy enough to impede the slave’s movement, an additional weight would be added onto the chain.
23“Le collier”, also known as a slave collar, consisted of a flat iron circle containing three or four spikes, where each spike was the length of about four to five inches. The collar was fixed to the slave’s neck with a padlock. The collar was a more stigmatized punishment than the iron shackles, as slaves felt more isolated from their peers once they began to wear the collar, and slave owners intended for the collar to be a sign of humiliation for the slave. For example, the collar inhibited female slaves from singing and dancing, two activities that they might have normally participated in as part of their social life