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Historical Document
"What Became of the Slaves on a Georgia Plantation"

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Shortly after the sale of 429 slaves in Savannah, Georgia -- an event known as "The Weeping Time" -- the first installment of Mortimer Thomson's "expose" was published by the New York Tribune and carried by other papers. Thomson, also known as "Doesticks" by his many fans, had travelled to Savannah and posed as one of the many buyers who had flocked to participate in the auction -- buyers he described as being "a rough breed, slangy, profane and bearish."

The article was not at all well-received by the pro-slavery advocates of the South. The editor of the Savannah Republican wrote, among other criticisms, that Thomson was a "somewhat notorious individual" and a "hiring libeler" and that the report was a "tissue of misrepresentation and falsehood."

Thomson's sympathetic report contained detailed descriptions of the auction, including touching accounts of individual slaves and their stories. It was republished in 1863 as a pamphlet entitled,"What Became of the Slaves on a Georgia Plantation" and was billed as a sequel to Fanny Kemble's Journal of a Residence on a Georgian Plantation.

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The Weeping Time

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