Blog Post 3 

The visual image that I chose was titled Blow by Blow, illustrated by Stephens, H. Louis. The painting was created between the years of 1860 to 1870 by a form of lithography. The practice of lithography is defined as a style of printing that makes use of the immiscibility of grease and water when they come into contact with one another. In the painting it looks as if the enslaved laborer has beaten his master to the ground. In this painting we observe the enslaved person has a club of some sort in his hand and is striking the master, probably to the point of unconsciousness or death. We can also observe that the master has a whip in his hand which would have been used to aggravate the enslaved person and resulted in this situation. I am not sure how often particular events like this took place but there were several moments during the antebellum time period where slave uprsings/rebellion occured. This panting could lead to possible research questions involving the enslaved peoples rebellions against their masters and their successes/failures in result of them.

The written document that I submitted to Omeka was a letter written about the recent escape of the slave Fredrick Douglas. This letter was written on May 15, 1846. The name of the author of the document is unkown, but it is stated at the top of text that is was written by a Western Civilian. The author mentions that although he has never personally met Fredrick Douglas, he has heard of his honorable and extraordinary actions. He goes into further detail about the punishments if he were to be caught and how horrible the consequences would be. The author states “They want to kill him and glut their revenge. Kill him by inches”, which exemplifies how major of an offense it was for an enslaved person to run away during that time period.  The authors sympathy for Fredrick displays a sense unity starting to grow behind the enslaved people. After reading and hearing about the brutal conditions the enslaved people had to live with, I am not surprised so many of them risked their lives trying to escape. 


One thought on “Blog Post 3

  1. These two sources are strong examples of visual and text primary sources regarding the history of slavery. I really appreciate the amount of details you added for the metadata about these items; it provides strong information that we might not otherwise have just by looking at the source. I also enjoyed reading your analyses about these items and how they might be useful for understanding the history of slavery using digitized historical sources.

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