Education, Opportunity, and Social Services for Slaves and Free Blacks in Baltimore

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I. Education, Opportunity, and Social Services for Slaves and Free Blacks in Baltimore before Emancipation


The question of the nature of education, opportunity and the social services available to slaves and free blacks in Baltimore prior to Emancipation in November 1864 is inextricably interwoven with opportunity for employment in the city and what the city and state defined as 'freedom'. Much ink has been spilled on addressing the history of the free black and slave populations in Baltimore without much success in identifying and telling the life stories of slave and free in the city. Much of what has been written is anecdotal, and overshadowed by Frederick Douglass's narrative, which for his time in Baltimore is looked upon as defining and definitive.

Useful Secondary Sources:

Frederick Douglass, Narrative, several editions. See: [1]

Dantas, Black Townsmen, see: [2]

Fields, Slavery and Freedom, see: [3]

Gardner, "Free Blacks in Baltimore, 1800-1860" see:[4]

Graham, Baltimore, see: [5]

Phllips, Freedom’s Port, see: [6]

Rockman, Scaping By, see: [7]

Steffen, Mechanics, see: [8]

Tomlins, Law, Labor, and Ideology, see: [9]

Whitman, The Price of Freedom, and Challenging Freedom, see: [10]

Townsend, Tales of Two Cities, see: [11]

For an excellent introduction to the sources for the study of slavery in Maryland see: [12].

The most comprehensive survey of petitions and court documents relating to slaves and free blacks in Maryland was undertaken by Loren Schweninger. For the records he surveyed and had microfilmed relating to Maryland see the ecpclio version that permits transcription and annotation [13], and Schweninger's web site: [14] which is indexed to abstracts but does not provide the images. For ongoing research related to slaves and free blacks in Maryland see: [15]

II. Case Studies and Topic Files

[forthcoming]

ECP Original Input document: [16]