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Wilson, Branded Slave from New Orleans

Charles Paxson (American, active New York, 1860s)

Date:
1863
Medium:
Albumen silver print from glass negative
Dimensions:
8.4 x 5.3 cm (3 5/16 x 2 1/16 in.)
Classification:
Photographs
Credit Line:
Private Collection, Courtesy of William L. Schaeffer
  • Description

    On January 30, 1864, to fan the anti-slavery cause and promote the sale of abolitionist photographs, Harper’s Weekly published this carte de visite and three others as wood engravings. The newspaper also included stirring bibliographies of the emancipated slaves. The editors noted that Wilson Chinn was about sixty years old. His former master, Volsey B. Marmillion, a sugar planter near New Orleans, “was accustomed to brand his negroes, and Wilson has on his forehead the letters ‘V.B.M.’”

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