The Negro Law of South Carolina
Collected and Digested by JOHN BELTON O'NEALL

One of the Judges of the Courts of Law and Errors of the said State
Under a resolution of the State Agricultural Society of South Carolina

Read before them at their September semi-annual meeting, 1848 at Spartanburg Court House - by them directed to be submitted to the Governor, with a Request that he would lay it before the Legislature, at its approaching Session. November, 1848, and by him ordered to be Published for the information of the Members
Columbia, Printed by John G. Bowman, 1848
contributed by Edith Greisser

Chapter One
The Status of the Negro, his Rights and Disabilities

P. L.  163
Stat.  397
SECTION I The Act of 1740, section I, declares all Negroes and Indians (Free Indians in amity with this Government, Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes, who are now free excepted) to be slaves the offspring to follow the condition of the mother; and that such slaves are chattels personal.
The State vs Harden (note)
2 Speer's, 155
Nelson vs Whetmore, 1 Rich'n 324
SECTION 2 Under the provision it has been uniformly held, that color is prima facie evidence, that the party bearing the color of the Negro, mulatto or mestizo, is a slave; but the same prima facie result does not follow from the Indian color.
Miller vs Dawson & Brown, Dudley's Rep. 174
State vs Belmont, decided in Charleston, Jan. 1848
P. L. 164
7 Stat. 398
SECTION 3 Indians and the descendants of Indians are regarded as free Indians, in  amity with this government until the contrary be shown. In the second  proviso of Section I of the Act of 1740, it is declared that  "Every Negro,  Indian, mulatto and mestizo is a slave unless the contrary can be made to  appear" - yet in the same it is immediately thereafter provided-"The In dians in amity with this government, excepted, in which the burden of  proof shall lie on the defendant" that is, on the person claiming the Indian  plaintiff to bea slave. This latter clause of the proviso is now regarded as  furnishing the rule. The race of salve Indians or of Indians not in amity to  this government (The State) is extinct and hence the previous part of the proviso has no application.
Gliddon's Egypt
Exparte Ferrett and others, I Con. Rep. by Mill  194-5
SECTION 4 The term Negro is confined to slave Africans (The ancient Berbers) and  their descendants. It does not embrace the free inhabitants of Africa, such  as the Egyptians, Moors, or the Negro Asiatics, such as Lascars.
The State vs Scott, I Bail  273.
State vs Hayes, 1 Bail, 276
The State vs Scott, I Bail, 274
SECTION 5 Mulatto is the issue of the white and a Negro.
The State vs Davis & Hahns, 2 Bail 558
The State vs Cantey, 2 Hill, 615
SECTION 6 When the mulatto ceases and a party bearing some slight taint of the African blood ranks as white, is a question for the solution of a jury.
The State vs Cantey, 2 Hill, 615, 616.
Johnson vs Boon, I Speer's, 270-1.
White & Bass vs The Tax Collector of Kershaw, 3 Rich'n 136-7-8-9, 140-1
SECTION 7 Whenever the African taint is so far removed, that upon inspection a party may be fairly pronounced to be white, and such has been his or her previous reception into society, and enjoyment of the privileges usually enjoyed by white people the Jury may rate and regard the party as white.
The State vs Davis & Hanna, 2 Bail, 560
Turner vs The Tax Collector of Marion, decided in Charleston Feb. 1841
SECTION 8 No specific rule, as to the quantity of Negro blood which will compel a Jury to find one to be a mulatto has ever been opted. Between 1/4 and 1/8 seems fairly to be debatable ground. When the blood is reduced to or below 1/8 the Jury ought always to find the party white. When the blood is 1/4 or more African, the Jury must find the party a mulatto.
The State vs Hayes, 1 Bail 276
The State vs Scott, 1 Bail, 273
The State vs Cantey, 2 Hill, 614
SECTION 9  The question of color, and of course of caste, arises in various ways  and may in some cases be decided without the intervention of a Jury. As when a party is convicted and brought up for sentence, or a witness on the stand objected to as a free Negro, mulatto or mestizo, in these cases, if the color be so obvious that  there can be no mistake about it, the Judge may refuse to sentence, or may exclude the witness; still if the party against whose color the decision may be made, should claim to have the question tried by a Jury, it must, I apprehend, be so tried.
2nd sec, 9th Art. Con. Of SC, 1 Stat. 191 SECTION 10  There are three classes of cases in which the question of color and of course, of caste, most commonly occurs: 1st. Prohibition against Inferior Courts, or the Tax Collector. 2nd. Objections to witnesses offered to testify in the Superior Courts. 3rd. Actions of slander, for words charging the plaintiff with being a mulatto.
State vs B. Scott, 1 Bail, 296
Johnson vs Boon, 1 Speer's 270-1
The State vs Cantery, 2 Hill, 614
Cromer vs Miller, N. P. Decis. Charleston May 1847
SECTION 11  In the first class, free Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes are liable to be tried for all offences, by a magistrate, and five free holders (Except in Charleston, where two magistrates must sit) and of course, any person claiming to be white (Over whom, if that be true, they have no jurisdiction) charges before them criminally, may object to their jurisdiction and if they persist in trying him or her, may apply for and on making good the allegation, is entitled to have the writ of prohibition. It seems, if the party submits to have the questions of jurisdiction, tried by the Inferior Court, he will be concluded.
The State vs Scott, 1 Bail, 296 SECTION 12. The writ of prohibition is generally granted, nisi, on a suggestion sworn to by the relator, by any Judge at Chambers on notice being given to the Court claiming jurisdiction; but if the fact be un controverted, or so plain as not to admit of doubt, that the relator is white, the Judge may at once grant an absolute prohibition. Generally however, an issue id ordered to be made up on granting the prohibition nisi, in which the relator is plaintiff and on the Jury finding the relator to be a free white person, the prohibition is made absolute.
Burger, Tax Collector ads. Carter, 1 McMull. 418
Johnson vs Boon, 1 Speers 270-1
White & Bass vs The Tax Collector of Kershaw, 3 Rich'n, 136
SECTION 13 In this class too, the Tax Collectors frequently issue tax executions for  capitation taxes, against persons whom they suppose to be free Negroes,  mulattoes or mestizoes (Free persons of color) as they are sometimes loosely called.) If the person or persons against whom they be issued, be not liable to the tax, they may, on a suggestion, move for and have the writ of prohibition.
SECTION 14 In such cases where, from the affidavits accompanying the suggestion, it appears that the relator or relators has or have been received in society as white and has or have enjoyed the privileges of a white person, or of white people, I have uniformally made the order for prohibition to be come absolute, if the Tax Collector did not within a given time, file his suggestions contesting the status of the relator or relators. This course has been adopted, because the Tax Collector has no jurisdiction over the per son of the relator and has no judicial authority whatever to decide the question of caste. His execution is predicted of an assumed fact. He is therefore, bound to make that good, before he can collect the tax. This course has been found extremely convenient, as it has cut off an immense amount of litigation. For generally, the Tax Collectors exercise a sound and honest discretion in pursuing only those cases where there seems to be no room to doubt the degraded caste of the relator or relators.
SECTION 15 Where however, there is to be a question as to the color of the relator or relators, the Court may in its discretion cast the burden of proof on the Tax Collector or the relator. Generally I think, it should be cast on the Tax Collector, as his execution is the first allegation of the color of the relator. As the issue may result, the writ of prohibition is made absolute or dissolved.
See Reporter's note 'A' to McCollum vs Fitzsimons, 1 Rich'n, 254
McCollum vs Fitzsimons, 1 Rich'n, 252
SECTION 16 In all the cases of the first class, the decision is conclusive; in all subse- quent cases, civil or criminal. For the prohibition is in the nature of a  criminal proceeding operating in rem, and binds not only the parties but  also all the people of the Commonwealth. So it seems, that any decision  made in favor of the caste of the relator, as white, may be given in evidence in his favor.
SECTION 17 In the 2nd class the objection of the competency of the witness makes the  issue collateral and it is tried instanter, without any formal issue being  made up, and the finding is upon the record on trial. The verdict, in such  a case, concludes nothing beyond the question of competency in that  case. It however might be given in evidence for or against the witness,  not as conclusive, but as a circumstance having weight in settling the  question of status in all other cases.
Cromer vs Miller, N. P. Decis. Charleston, May 1847 SECTION 18 In the 3rd class, where justification is pleaded and found, it would seem to forever conclude, the Plaintiff from re-agitating the question. But Where the defense is as usual, that the Defendant had good reason to suspect  and believe that the Plaintiff was, as sustains the defense, yet it concludes not the Plaintiff from afterwards averring and proving that he was white.
The State ex relations, John Marsh. (The name should be John Mush) vs the Managers of Elections for York Dist. 1st bail, 215 SECTION 19 Free Indians and their descendants, unmixed by African blood, are entitled to all the privileges of white men except that of suffrage and office. The former and of consequence the latter, has been denied to the pure Indian, living among the whites. The foregoing principle resulting from the case cited in the margin, is, I am persuaded, wrong. The term white (Free white man) used in our Constitution, is compa5rative merely: it was intended to be used in opposition to the colors resulting from the slave blood. The case should be reviewed and I trust the decision will be reversed for the case in which it was made, will always condemn it. The relator, the Rev. John Mush, was an Indian of the Pawmunki Tribe of Indians in Virginia. He was a soldier of the Revolution. He had as such taken the oath of allegiance. He was sent out as a missionary to the Catawbas. He however, did not reside among them. He lived among the white inhabitants of York District, where he had resided for many years. He was a man of unexceptionable character. Yet, strange to say, he was held not to be entitled to vote. If that decision be right, how long is the objection to prevail? When is the descendant of an Indian to be regarded as white? Is it that he is not to be so regarded, until a Jury shall find him to be white, on account of the great preponderance of the white blood? But the Indian blood, like that of the white, is the blood of freedom. There is nothing degrading in it and hence therefore, the Indian and his descendants may well claim to be white within the legal meaning of our Constitution.
Miller vs Dawson and Brown, Dudley's Report, 174, 176, 2nd Proviso of 1st sec. of the Act of 1740, P.L. 164, 7 Stat. 398 SECTION 20 A mestizo is the issue of a Negro and an Indian and is subject to all the disabilities of a free Negro and mulatto.
2nd Faust, 324 SECTION 21 The burden of proof of freedom rests upon the Negro, mulatto or mestizo claiming to be free.
Wesner ads Guardian of Tom Brister, 1st McMull, 135

P. L. 164
SECTION 22 Under the Act of 1740, 1st sec., 1st proviso and the Act of 1799, it is provided, if any Negro, mulatto or mestizo shall claim his or her freedom he may on application to the Clerk of Court of Common Pleas of the District, have a guardian appointed, who is authorized to bring an action of trespass, in the nature of ravishment of ward, against any person claiming property in the said Negro, mulatto or mestizo, or having possession of the same, in which action, the general issue may be pleaded, and the special circumstances given in evidence; and upon a general or special verdict found, judgment shall be given according to the very right of the case, without any regard to defects in the proceding in form or substance. In such case, if the verdict be that the ward of the Plaintiff is free, a special entry shall be made declaring him to be free and the jury is authorized to assess damages which the Plaintiff's ward may have sustained, and the Court id directed to give judg ment and award execution for the damages and cost. But if judgment is given for the Defendant, then the Court is authorized to inflict corporal punishment on the ward of the Plaintiff, not extending to life or limb. Under the 2nd section of the Act of 1740, it is provided that the Defendant in such action, shall enter into a recognizance with one or more sufficient sureties to the Plaintiff in such sum as the Court of Common Pleas may direct , conditioned to produce the ward of the Plaintiff at all times, when required by the Court, and that while the action or suit is pending, he shall not be eloigned, abused or misused.
SECTION 23 Under the 1st proviso, the action of trespass in the nature of ravishment of ward, is an action sounding altogether in damages. The finding for the Plaintiff is altogether of damages, which may be made up of the value of the services of the Plaintiff's ward and for recompense for any abuse or injury which he may sustain. For such damages and the costs, the judgment is entered up and execution issues.
Rice ads. Spear and Galbreath, Harp, Report, 20

The State vs Hill, 24 Speers, 160

Poole vs Vernon, 2nd Hill, 669
SECTION 24 Under the Act, the Court is authorized, on such finding for the Plaintiff, to make a special entry, that the ward of the Plaintiff is free. This entry ought to recite the action, the finding of the Jury, and then should follow the Order of the Court, that the Plaintiff's ward is free and that he be discharged from the service of the Defendant. This should be spread on the minutes of the Court. This entry is, it seems, evidence of the freedom of the Plaintiff's ward in all other cases and against all other persons. It is only conclusive, however, against the Defendant; against all other persons, it is prima fascie merely. Under the 2nd sec. the proceeding is by petition, setting out the action brought to recover the freedom of the Negro, the possession by the Defendant, with a prayer, that the Defendant enter into the recognizance required by law. If this order be disobeyed, the Defendant may be attached for a contempt, until it be obeyed.; or it may be in analogy to the decision under the Trover Act, that the Sheriff might arrest the Defendant under the order and keep him in custody until he entered into the recognizance. I never knew the order made but once and that was in the case of Spear and Galbreath, Guardian of Charles vs Rice, Harp, 20. In that case, the order was complied with by the Defendant on notice of it.
SECTION 25 The evidence of freedom is as various as the cases.
State vs Harden, 2nd Speer, 156 (Note) SECTION 26 Proof that a Negro has been suffered to live in a community for years as a freeman, is prima fascie proof of freedom.
Miller, Adm'r. of  Bennet vs. Reigne, et al. 2nd Hill, 592.
The State vs. Hill, 2nd Speers 161
SECTION 27 If before the Act of 1820, a negro was at large, without an owner and acting as a freeman for twenty years, the Court would presume omnia esse rita acta and every muniment necessary to give effect to freedom to have been properly executed.
SECTION 28 This rule applies also, when freedom has been begun to be enjoyed before the Act of 1820 and the 20 years are completed after.
Cooper's Justinian Noters, 416
Salley vs. Beatty 1, Bay 260
Bowers vs. Newman, 2. McMull. 491.2
SECTION 29 Before the Act of 1800, (hereafter to be adverted to) anything which shewed that the owner had deliberately parted with his property, and dissolved the vinculum suvitii, was enough to establish freedom.
Monk vs. Jenkins, 2. Hill, C. R. 13, Rice ads.
Spear and Galbreath, Harper's Law report 20.
SECTION 30   The validity of freedom depends upon the law of the place where it begins. Hence, when slaves have been manumitted in other States, and are found in this State, their freedom, here, will depend on the validity of the manumission at the place whence they came.
7 Stat. 442, 443 SECTION 31   By the seventh, eighth and ninth sections of the act of 1800, it was provided, that emancipation could only take effect by deed; that the owner intending to emancipate a slave, should, with the slave, appear before a Justice of the Quorum, and five freeholders of the vicinage, and upon oath , answer all such questions as they might ask touching the character and capability of the slave to gain a livelihood in an honest way. And if, upon such examination, it appeared to them, the slave was not of bad character, and was capable of gaining a livelihood in an honest way, they were directed to endorse a certificate upon the deed to that effect; and upon the said deed and certificate being recorded in the clerk's office, within six months from the execution, the emancipation was declared to be legal and valid, otherwise, that it was void. The person emancipating was directed by the eighth section, to deliver to the slave a copy of the deed of emancipation, attested by the clerk, within 10 days after such deed shall have been executed.
SECTION 32   The person emancipating, neglecting or refusing to deliver such copy, was, by the ninth section, declared to be liable to a fine of $50 with costs, to be recovered by anyone who shall sue for the same.
SECTION 33    It was also provided by the ninth section, that a slave emancipated contrary to this act, maybe season may property by anyone.
1st Bail. 632, 633 SECTION 34   It was held, for a long time that when a will directed slaves to be free, or to be set free, that they were liable to seizure as ill legally emancipated. But the cases of Lenoir vs Sylvester and Young vs. he same, put that matter right. In them, it was held that a bequest of freedom was not void under the act of 1800 - that he could have no effect until the executor as Senate -that when he did assent, it was his duty to so assent as to give legal effect to the bequest. As legal owner, he could execute the deed, appear before the magistrate and freeholders, answer the questions, and do every act required by the law, and thus make the emancipation legal.
Linum vs Johnson, 2nd Bail, 140

Monk vs. Jenkins, 2 Hill, C. R. 13. 7 Stat. 459
SECTION 35   A slave illegally emancipated, was free, as against the rights of the owner, under the act of 1800; he can only restore himself to his rights by capture. The act of 1820, declares that no slave shall be emancipated but by the act of the Legislature. Still, it has been held, in Linam vs Johnson and many subsequent cases that if a slave be in any other way emancipated, he may under the provision of the act of 1800, be seized as derelict.
Monk vs. Jenkins, 2 Hill, C. R. 14-15 SECTION 36   The delivery of the deed of emancipation to the clerk to be recorded is all the delivery necessary to give it legal affect; and the delivery to the clerk is equivalent to recording.
Cline vs. Caldwell, 1 Hill, 423
State vs. Singletary and others, Dudley's Rep. 220
Carmille vs. Admr. Of Carmille et al. 2nd McMull, 424
The State vs Singletary and Rhame, Dud. 220
SECTION 37   The act of 1820, declaring that no slave Should hereafter be emancipated, but by the Act of the Legislature, introduced a new and I think an unfortunate provision in our law. All laws unnecessarily restraining the rights of owners are unwise. So far as may be necessary to preserve the peace and good order of the community, they may be properly restrained. The act of 1800 was of that kind. The act of 1820, instead of regulating, cut off the power of emancipation. Like all of this class, it has done harm instead of good. It has caused evasions without number. These have been successful by investing the ownership in persons legally capable of holding it, and thus substantially conferring freedom when it was legally denied.
Carmille vs. Admr. Of Carmille, 2 McMull, 424 SECTION 38   So too, bequests or gifts for the use of such slaves, were supported under the rule, that whatever is given to the slave belongs to the master.
Vingard vs. Passalaigue, 2 Strob SECTION 39   Since the act of 1820, if a Negro be at  large, and enjoy freedom for 20 years, he or she is still a slave; as an act of emancipation passed by the Legislature, will not be presumed.
Frazier vs. Frazier, 2 Hill C. R. 305 SECTION 40   The act of 1820, was plainly intended to restrain emancipation within the state; it was, therefore, held by the court of appeals, that where a testator directed slaves to be sent out of the state, and there set free, such bequest was good.
11 Stat.  154. SECTION 41   In 1841, the legislature, by a sweeping act, declared 1st that any bequest, deed of trust or conveyance intended to take affect after the death of the owner, whereby the removal of any slave or slaves without the state, is secured or intended with a view to the emancipation of such slave or slaves shall be void - and the slave or slaves assets, in the hands of any Executor or Administrator. 2nd That any gift of any slave or slaves, by deed or otherwise, accompanied by a trust, secret or implied, that the donce hall remove such slaves from the state to be emancipated, shall be void and directed the donce to deliver Up the slave or slaves or account to the distributes or next of kin for their value. 3rd , that any bequests, gift or conveyance of any slave or slaves, With a trust or confidence, either secret or express, that such labor, slave shall be held in nominal servitude. Only, shall be void, and the donee is directed to deliver this labor slaves, or to account for their value to the distributes or next of kin. 4th , that every devise, or  bequest to a slave or slaves or to any person upon a trust or confidence, secret, or expressed, for the benefit of any slave or slaves shall be void.
Carmille vs. the Admr. Of Carmille, 2nd McMull 424 SECTION 42   This act, reversing the whole body of the law, which had been settled by various decisions from 1830, can have no effect on any deed, will, gift or conveyance made prior to its passage, 17, December 1841.
SECTION 43   This act, it has been always said, was passed to control a rich gentleman in the disposition of his estate. Like everything of the kind, he defeated it and the expectations of his next of kin, by devising his estate to one of their kindred, to the exclusion of all the rest.
SECTION 44   My experience as a man and a judge lends me to condemn the acts of 1820 and 1841. They ought to be repealed and the act of 1800 restored. The state has nothing to fear from emancipation, regulated as that law directs it to be. Many a master knows that he has a slave or slaves, for whom he feels it to be his duty to provide. As the law now stands, that cannot be done. In a slave country, the good shall be especially rewarded. Who are to judge of this, but the master? Give him the power of emancipation, under well-regulated guards and he can dispense the only reward, which either he or his slave appreciates. In the present state of the world, it is especially our duty and that of the slave owners to be just and merciful and in all things to be exceptione majori. With well-regulated and mercy fully applied slave laws, we have nothing to fear for Negro slavery. Fanatics of our own or foreign countries will be in the condition of the Viper biting the file. They, not us, will be the sufferers. Let me, however, assure my countrymen and fellow slaveholders that unjust laws, or unmerciful management of slaves, fall upon us and our institutions with more withering effect than anything else. I would see South Carolina, the kind mother and mistress of all her people, free and slave. And to all, extending justice and mercy. As against our enemies, I would say to her, be just and fear not. Her sons faltered, not on a foreign sure; at home, they will die in the last trench rather than her rights should be invaded or despoiled.
SECTION  45   Free Negroes, mulattoes and mesttizoes are entitled to all the rights of property, and protection in their persons and property by action or indictment, which the white inhabitants of this state are entitled to.
7 S. Stat, 402 SECTION 46   They are legally sui juris. (The Act of 1822, section 8, requires every male free Negro, above the age of 15, to have a guardian, who must be a respectable freeholder of the district, who may be appointed by the clerk.) Notwithstanding this provision, the free Negro is still, as I have said sui juris, when of and above the age of 21.The Guardian is a mere protector of the Negro and a guarantor of his good conduct to the public.
Bowers vs. Newman, 2nd McMull, 472
Real Estate of Mrs. Hardcastle ads. The Escheator of Pineville, reported in the arg't.
Bowers vs. Newman, 2nd McMull, 479-480
SECTION 47   They may contract, and be contracted with. Their marriages with one another and even with white people are legal. They may purchase, hold and transmit by descent, real estate. They can mortgage, aliene or devise the same. They may sue, and be sued without noticing their respective guardians.
The State vs. Harden, note A.
2 Speers 152
The State vs. Hill, Idem 150-151
SECTION 48   They are entitled to protect their persons by action, indictment and the writ of habeas corpus (Except that the writ of habeas corpus is denied to those who enter the state contrary to the act of 1835.)  , they cannot repel force by force; that is, they cannot strike a white man who may strike any of them.
The State vs. B. Scott, 1 Bill 294 1st sec. Act of 1844, 11 Stat, 293 SECTION 49   It has, however been held, in a case decided in the court of appeals, and not reported, that insolence on the part of a free Negro would not excuse an assault and battery. From that decision I dissented, holding, as in the State vs. Harden, 2nd Speers (note) 155 "That Words of impertinence or insolence Address by a free Negro to a white man would justify an assault and battery". "As a general rule, I should say that whatever, in the opinion of the jury would induce them, as reasonable men, to strike a free Negroe, should in all cases be regarded as a legal justification in an indictment".
6 Stat, 674 SECTION 50   In addition to the common law, remedies by action of the Solomon battery and false imprisonment and indictments for the same, the act of 1837 furnishes another guarantee for the protection of free Negroes, mulattoes or mestizoes,  by declaring anyone convicted of their forcible abduction or assisting, there in to be liable to a fine not less than $1000 and imprisonment not less than 12 months.
White vs. Holmes, McC 430
Gron'ng vs. Devana, 2nd Bail 192. 13th and 14th sec. of Act of 1740. P. L. 166

The State vs. Dowell, 2 Brev. 146

The State a vs R. Sc aott, 1 Bail 273
The State vs. Hays, 1 Bail, 275
SECTION 51 Free Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes cannot be witnesses or jurors in the superior courts. They can be jurors nowhere. They cannot even be witnesses in inferior courts with the single exception of a magistrates or freeholder court trying slaves or free Negroes, mulattoes or mestizoes for criminal offenses and then without oath. This was however, not always the case, to the entire extent which I have stated. It was at one time held that any person of color, if the issue is a free white woman is entitled to give evidence and ought to be admitted as a witness in our courts. This was predicted of a clear mistake of the civil law maxim of partus sequitor ventrem and of the provision in the first section of the act of 1740, That the offspring should follow the condition of the mother, which only mean, that slavery or freedom should be the condition of the offspring, but where the words mulatto or mestizo are ever used as designating a class, they are to be interpreted by their common acceptation.

P. I. 166-167

7 Stat  401-402

SECTION 52   It is singular that the 13th and 14 sections of the act of 1740 directing, who may be witnesses against slaves , Free Negroes, etc. should have been confined to free Indians and slaves who are to be examined without oath From which it would seem, that free Negroes, mulattoes  etc. might be examined in such cases, as at common law, upon oath. But the practice under the act has been uniform as I have before stated it. I think it a very unwise privation and course of practice To examine any witnesses in any court or case without the sanction of an oath. Negroes, (slaves or free) will feel the sanctions of an oath with as much force as any of the ignorant classes of white people in a Christian country. They ought too, to be made to know if they testify falsely, they are to be punished for it by human laws. The course pursued on the trial of Negroes in the adduction and obtaining testimony, leads to none of the certainties of truth. Falsehood is often the result and innocence is thus often sacrificed on the shrine of prejudice.
Glenn vs. Lopez
Harp, Rep.  109
SECTION 53   Free Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes may make all necessary affidavits on collateral matters in cases in the Superior Court in which they may be parties, as on motions of postponement, etc. So, too, they may, in such court take the oaths under the Insolvent Debtors or Prison Bounds Act, and under the acts of Congress to obtain a pension.
Act. Of 1847, p426
The State vs Graham, 2nd Hill, 427, 2nd sec. Act. Of '45, 11 Stat, 343
SECTION 54   Free Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes  (Except such as are proved to the satisfaction of the tax collector to be incapable of making a livelihood) are liable to the capitation tax (Fixed by each tax act). They may make a return personally or any member of the family may make a return for the rest; or if one be sick, he or she may make such return by agent. They are liable to be double taxed for not making a return of themselves.
Act of 1805, p6
Act of '332nd sec. p4
The State vs. Graham, 2nd Hill, 458
SECTION 55   This tax seems to have originated in 1805. The act of 1833 directs the issuing of executions against free Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes, who may fail to pay the tax, and that under them, they may be sold for a term, not exceeding one year; provided, however, that they shall in no instance be sold for a longer term than may be necessary to pay the taxes due; but they cannot be sold under the double tax executions to be issued against them for not making returns of themselves. Such executions go against property merely. The constitutionality of the provision for the sale of free Negroes in payment of their taxes is exceedingly questionable.
2nd sec. 9th Art. Con. S. C. SECTION 56   The term "free person of color" used in many of our acts since 1840, has given rise to many imperfect and improper notions. Its meaning is confined by the act of 1740 and all proper Constructions of our code noir to Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes. In common parlance it has a much wider signification, hence the danger of its use, for all who have to execute the acts of the legislature are not learned lawyers or judges. The legislature ought to use the words of the act of 1740, "Free Negroes, mulattoes and mestizoes" And then everyone would have a certain guide to understand the words used.
Act of 1835, 1st sec. 7 Stat. 470 SECTION 57    The act of '35 declares it to be unlawful for any free Negro or person of color to migrate into this state, or to be brought or introduced within its limits by land or water.
SECTION 58   Any free Negro, or person of color, not being a seaman on board any vessel arriving in this state, violating this law, shall and may be seized by any white person or by the Sheriff, or Constable of the district and carried before any magistrate of the district, city or parish who is authorized to bail or commit the said free Negro and to summon three freeholders and form a court for the trial and examination of the said free Negro or person of color within six days after his arrest; and, on conviction, order him to leave the state and at the time of conviction to commit him to jail until he can leave the state or to release him on bail, not longer than 15 days. And if after being bailed and ordered to leave the state, the free Negro or person of color shall not leave within 15 days, or having left shall return, shall be arrested, and on conviction before a court of one magistrate and three freeholders, he shall be liable to such corporal punishment as the court shall order; If after such punishment, the offender shall still remain in the state "longer than the time allowed" (Which is I suppose the time previously fixed, 15 days)  or shall return, upon proofing, conviction before a court of law magistrate and three freeholders, the free Negro or person of color may be sold and the proceeds appropriated, one half to the use of the state and the other half to the use of the informer.
2nd sec. 7 Stat  471 SECTION 59   If the free Negro or person of color come into this state on board any vessel as a cook, steward, mariner, or in any other employment, the sheriff of the district is to apprehend and confine in jail such free Negro or person of color until the vessel be hauled off from the wharf and ready for sea. The act provides that on the apprehension of any free Negro or person of color on board any vessel, the Sheriff shall cause the captain to enter into a recognizance was good and sufficient security in the sum of $1000 for each free Negro or person of color who may be on board his said vessel; that he will comply with the requisitions of this act, which are that he will when ready for sea, carry away the said free Negro or person of color and pay the costs of his detention; but if the captain be unable or refuse to do so, he is to be required by the Sheriff to haul his vessel in the stream, 100 yards distance from shore, and there remain until ready for sea. If this be not complied with in 24 hours the captain is liable to be indicted, and on the conviction is to be fined not exceeding $1000 and imprisoned not exceeding six months.
34 sec. 7 Stat  471 SECTION 60   Whenever any free Negro or person of color shall be apprehended and committed for coming into this state by sea, it is the duty of the sheriff to call upon some magistrate to warn the offender, Never again to enter this state and at the time of giving such warning, the magistrate is to enter the name of such free Negro or person of color in a book to be kept by the Sheriff with a description of his person and occupation, which book is evidence of the warning and is to be deposited in the clerk's office as a public record. If the offender shall not depart the state, in case the Capt. shall refuse or neglect to carry him or her away or having departed, shall ever again enter into the State, he or she is liable to be dealt with and incur the forfeiture prescribed in the first section.
5th sec. 7 Stat  472 SECTION 61   If any free Negro or person of color before the passage of the act of 1835, or since, has left, or shall leave the state, they are forever prohibited from returning under the penalty of the first section.
9th sec. 7 Stat  473 SECTION  62   The eighth section of the act, excepts from its operation free Negroes and persons of color coming into the state from shipwreck, but declares them liable to arrest and imprisonment as provided in the second section, and to incur all its penalties, if within 30 days, they shall not leave the state.
SECTION 63   The ninth section excepts free Negroes and persons of color who shall arrive as cooks, stewards or mariners or in other employment in any vessel of the United States; or on board any national vessel of the navies of any of the European or other powers in amity with the United States, unless they shall be found on shore, after being warned by the Sheriff to keep on board their vessel. The act does not extend to free American Indians, free Moors or Lascars or other colored subjects beyond the Cape of Good Hope, who may arrive in any merchant vessel.
14th sec. 7 Stat  474 SECTION 64   Free Negroes and free persons of color (meaning of course mulattoes and mestizoes) Are prohibited (unless they have a ticket from their Guardian) from carrying any firearms, or other military or dangerous weapons, under pain of forfeiture and being whipped at the discretion of the magistrate and three freeholders. They cannot be employed as pioneers, though they may be subjected to military fatigue duty.
33 paragraph, 8th sec. 1st  art. Con.  US
2nd sec. 9th art.  Con. SC
Chapman vs Miller, 2nd Speers, 769
SECTION 65   The first, second, third and fifth sections of the act of 1835, are to my mind, of so questionable policy that I should be disposed to repeal them. They carry with them so many elements of discord with our sister states and foreign nations that unless they were of paramount necessity, which I have never believed, we should at once strike them out. I am afraid too, there are many grave constitutional objections to them in whole or in part.

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