Friday, July 30, 1852 page icon [Intro & Addenda] pdf icon [PDF]

I then went to Auction house to see Mr. Branton where I found him. I waited and witnessed the sale at 3 different houses of some 15 to 20 men, women & children and find the sight and business and the incidents become more & more disgusting & odious the more I witness them—saw them sell from 300 dolls up to $1000, saw the men's nakedness exposed from shoulders to feet and the womens legs above the knees shown particularly and their bellys, bosoms &c. felt. The belly of one woman very rudely & roughly by the Auctioneer to see I believe if she was with child,—between 11 & 12 went with Branton to his private Jail. Saw his negroes some 30 or more men, boys, women, girls & babys drawn up in line to exhibit to a man then in there, also saw Jim Philips who was of course delighted to see me, —abt 12 noon. Branton & his son Geo. & myself & Jim came up Street to Mr. Cannon's office. Mr. Branton then made Bill of Sale to Jno. H. Brant, Wm. W. Rutherford & E. Byers for said James Philips at $800 and I handed him the $800 dft. deld. to me by Dr. R. 28 inst. in payt for Jim. He then agreed to leave and did leave the bill of sale from J. Timberlake as agent for A.G. Hudson to Wm. A. Branton for $505, with Mr. Cannon to procure acknmt. of Timberlake thereto that the same may also be recorded here, as is that from Branton as aforesaid, for Mr. Cannon. Branton & myself then walked to the City Hall & Clerks office of Hustings court where I got sd. bill of sale from B[ranton] to B[rant], R[utherford] & E[ly Byers] recorded & pd. Clerk $1.50 therefor (v. Receipt). I retd. with Mr. Cannon from sd. Clks. office to his office and then took copy of said Timberlake Bill of Sale compared by Mr. Cannon & Myself & certificate of said comparison signed by us, Jim followed us by my direction, on these sundry walks. I then returned about 1 1 / 4 P.M. to my Boarding House and with Mrs. Harwoods leave & approval took him to my room to remain till I am ready to take the cars this evening at 9 P.M. for home. Got dinner near 2 P.M. and then went to said City Hall for my sd. Bill of Sale . . . .While we viz Cannon, Branton, self & Philips were walking to City Hall as above Branton remarked to Mr. Cannon that Jim was now a happier man he presumed since his release than he Branton ever expected to be. This showing his, B's own convictions that such a release from servitude furnished ground & reason for rather unusual joy & happiness as such as even he B. in his excited and quasi cheerful whirl as a trader never expected to experience. Thus furnishing the strongest evidence against the positions of these gentlemen that the negroes are really better off in this bought & sold & slave condition than when free.

Note: The next transcribed journal entry jumps to September 26, 1853.

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