Contents and Arrangement

Seals of the Blackman Family Crest, 1780

1 folder

Collection Overview

Collection Description & Creator Information

Description:

The collection consists of records -- correspondence, manuscripts, accounts, slave lists, drawings, a deed, and a newspaper -- relating to the life history of Boarded Hall Estate, a Barbados slave plantation, starting with its first owner in 1676. Compiled by the son of its last English owner, Captain George Harnage, the material documents an important period in the history of Barbados and its slave plantations. Harnage found much of the material during his visits to the plantation in 1819 and 1820. He also supplied annotations and footnotes on almost all of the items which he signed and dated, the last of which (item number 6) is dated 1887 (probably by someone else). One of the main documents in the archive is a narrative in the hand of General Henry Peers, an earlier owner, which provides a history of the seventeenth-century origins of the estate and its owners. There are figures about the production of sugar and rum on the plantation from 1789 to 1828. There is an account book for the years 1823 and 1824, which itemizes salaries, purchases, money paid for physicians attending to sick "Negroes," necessaries for sick "Negroes," cost of a cage for a "Negro" who absented himself from work , cost of a trial and execution of one "negro" who committed a robbery, as well as the cost of purchasing candles and nails. At the time, plantation owners were required to keep records of their slaves, and an account book, dated 26 April 1824, contains a list of "Negroes" on the estate with their names, gender, age, value, state of health, and occupation. There is also a list showing an increase or decrease in slaves since the last account.

Correspondence includes a letter (1745) from Tobias Frere in London to the Hon. John Lyte, an owner of Boarded Hall Estate in 1740, regarding its management. In letters to George Harnage, Sr., John Goring, manager from 1785 to 1823, writes about the mismanagement of the estate after it was taken over by Edmun Nagels, and his mistreatment by Nagel's trustee, a "Mr. Powell." He writes about the destruction of "Negro huts" after the hurricane of 1831 and refers bitterly to the aftermath of the 1833 abolition of slavery act in England and its effects on the economy in Barbados. Other correspondents include Catherine Perry, who wrote to Harnage about the destruction of Goring's home in the fire of 1845, and Thomas Pierrepoint, the attorney for the estate.

Also included are a deed for property in Jamaica, dated 26 March 1712 and signed by John Lucie Blackman and a "Mr. Thompson," pen drawings of building structures on the estate, and an issue of the newspaper Barbados Globe for 6 February 1845, reporting the destruction of 180 homes in Bridgetown by a fire on February 3rd and 4th. In 1824, Harnage had the collection of documents he found bound in England.

Collection History

Archival Appraisal Information:

No appraisal information is available.

Access & Use

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

Conditions for Reproduction and Use:

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. No further photoduplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to RBSC Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.

Credit this material:

Seals of the Blackman Family Crest; Boarded Hall Estate (Barbados) Plantation Records, C1227, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

Location:
Firestone Library
One Washington Road
Princeton, NJ 08544, USA
(609) 258-3184