White Servitude in Colonial South Carolina

By Warren B. Smith | Go to book overview

APPENDIX I
An Act for the Better Governing and Regulating White Servants (This is Act No. 383 of 1717.--See TROTT MS: pp. 701 to 715; and COOPER (Columbia, S. C.: A. D. Johnson, 1838), III, 14 to 20.

* * *

"Whereas, there has of late arrived in this Province great numbers of white servants, which for want of sufficient rules to order, direct and govern them, have proved of bad consequence to their masters, owners and overseers; for remedy of which for the future,

"I. Be it enacted by his Excellency John Lord Carteret, Palatine, and the rest of the true and absolute Lords and Proprietors of the Province of Carolina, by and with the advice and consent of the rest of the members of the General Assembly, now met at Charlestown for the South and West part of this Province, and by the authority of the same, That all servants shall serve according to his contract or indentures; and where there is no contract or indentures, servants under the age of sixteen years at their arrival in this Province, shall serve until they are of the age of one and twenty years; and if they be above the age of sixteen years, they shall serve five years; and at the expiration of the time aforesaid, shall receive from their master, mistress or employer, a certificate of their freedom on demand; and whoever shall refuse without good cause to give such certificate to any servant whose time is expired, shall forfeit forty shillings for every refusal, to be recovered by the party injured, as is directed in the Act for the Trial of small and mean causes; Provided, that nothing in this Act be construed to extend to any person whatsoever that is brought into this Province, that has not obliged themselves by some contracts to become servants, but such person or persons so brought in, shall pay or cause to be paid to the importer, for his passage, in twenty days after his arrival, in the current money of this Province, allowing for the difference of the exchange of money of the place from whence they were exported, according to the usual rate of passages from such port or place to this Province.

"II. And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, That all servants brought or transported out of any of his Majestty's col

-109-

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