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Embattled FreedomJourneys through the Civil War's Slave Refugee Camps$
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Amy Murrell Taylor

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781469643625

Published to North Carolina Scholarship Online: September 2019

DOI: 10.5149/northcarolina/9781469643625.001.0001

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Edward and Emma Whitehurst in Slavery

Edward and Emma Whitehurst in Slavery

Chapter:
(p.19) Edward and Emma Whitehurst in Slavery
Source:
Embattled Freedom
Author(s):

Amy Murrell Taylor

Publisher:
University of North Carolina Press
DOI:10.5149/northcarolina/9781469643625.003.0102

This interlude takes readers back into the antebellum period to understand what propelled Edward and Emma Whitehurst into Union lines in May 1861. It describes their lives in slavery, from Emma’s work as a field hand to Edward’s labor as a “hired-out” slave, a position that enabled them to save his wages in the hope of one day purchasing their freedom. It also narrates the arrival of war in their part of Newport News, Virginia, and the way in which planters in the region began leaving the area first. This opened up room for enslaved people like the Whitehursts to flee to Union lines beginning in mid-May, 1861.

Keywords:   slave, hired-out slave, field hand, Newport News, Virginia, planters

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