Sargry: The Slave Family

1372 Words6 Pages
Family is a place to fall back to for comfort, a place to always fit in, and a place to build memories, but for slaves families were supposed to be those things and they were not. The hardship of watching family members being sold away takes away the happy memories. Children growing up in slavery takes away the comfort of home because they were going to face the harsh reality of slave hood. Slaves never got the solid structure of a family because they could be broken with a blink of an eye. Therefore, while given the opportunity to marry and form families as comfort for the slaves it provided insurance to slave masters, and they proved to be the biggest heartbreaks for slaves themselves. In the beginnings of American Slavery there was no legal…show more content…
Marriages in slavery however were delicate and could be gone with one bill of sale. The pain of being sold apart from loved ones is described in several letters between husbands and wives. In 1840, Sargry Brown wrote a letter in distress to her husband who lived away from her. Sargry was nearly sending her good bye to her husband since she was going to be up for sale. Sargry writes, “If you don’t come down here this Sunday, perhaps you won’t see me anymore. Give my love to them all, and tell them all that perhaps I shan’t see you any more…I wish to see you all, but I expect I never shall see you all-never no more”. Situations like Sargry Brown and her husband were not uncommon. The fact that she had the potential to never see her family again would have been anguishing. The anguish of being sold apart from the family could have been prevented if slaves did not create the family units the slave masters encouraged for their own sake. Another marriage in the depths of being sold away was in 1852 the Perkins. Maria Perkins is writing a letter to her husband Richard explaining to him that the kids and her were being sold. In a desperate attempt Maria asks, “I want you to tell Dr. Hamelton or your master if either will buy me they can attend to it…if I should be sold I don’t know what will become of them [children] I don’t…show more content…
The origins of slave families becoming allowed on plantations could be stemmed back to the livestock species the slave masters considered them being. The marriage is at the heart of a family and when they were torn apart and shipped to different plantations miles and miles away. The marriage expands into children. When children are thought of as bundles of joy that bring all kinds of happiness into the world, however for children brought into slavery it brought more pain into the family unit as they knew everything would be downhill from the child from their birth, they could get separated from their family and they would watch all the horror associated with slavery. Overall slaves were supposedly more docile when families could form, but the misery caused by all the associated risks of raising a family in
Open Document