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Official Records | Newspaper Materials | Slaveholder Records | Literature and Narratives

Literature and Narratives

Servants and slaves were often featured in literature and travel accounts of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. These works range from great novels such as Daniel Defoe's Moll Flanders, published in 1722, telling the story of a woman transported to Virginia, to more ephemeral accounts of criminals and highwaymen. Also included in this section are European accounts of their travels in Africa.

  • Francis Moore's account of Senegambia
  • In 1733, Francis Moore, agent for a British slaving firm, published his Travels to the Inland Parts of Africa. This account of his trip to the Senegambia region of West Africa, a major source of slaves particularly in the early years of the slave trade, was reprinted in various collections of travel literature.

  • The Poor Unhappy Transported Felon's Sorrowful Account of servitude in Virginia
  • This poem, published in London in 1767, and attributed to "James Revel, the unhappy sufferer," is a cautionary tale of the dangers of crime leading to transportation.