Rules and Punishments for Slaves

Haley Fairman 7th period

photos of slavery punishments in America
life of a plantation slave

Rules of Slaves

1. The most entire submission and obedience will be required on the part of every slave, both to any agent or to the manager, and any slave who shall resist such authority must be arrested at all hazard and forthwith punished until he submit, and to the satisfaction of the agent or manager who has been resisted.

2nd. In case of the resistance of any slave, every other one present will be reqired to assist in arresting him, and should any slave refuse when ordered to arrest another, he shall be punished just the same as if he himself had resisted.

3rd. No slave will be allowed to use ardent spirits, or to purchase or bring any upon the plantation, or to keep any about his person or house, and any one infracting this rule (a rule deemed essential to the preservation of the health and morals of the slaves, as well as of the order and good government of the plantation) shall be severely punished.

4th. Stealing, lying, adultery, fornication, profane language, fighting and quarreling, are all prohibited by the laws of God and man, and must be invariably punished according to the nature and degree of the offence.

5th. No slave will leave the plantation without a written pass from the manager.

6th. No slave shall sell anything without a written permission from the manager, specifying the article or articles to be sold.

7th. No slave not belonging to the estate will be allowed to visit the premises without having in his possession a written pass from his master or manager.

8th. No slave will marry another off (or not belonging to) the estate, without the consent of the proprietor. As such connections lay the parties at all times liable to separation, besides being attended with other evils and inconveniences, they will be but rarely allowed to take place. No slave shall, under any circumstances, marry a free slave or free men. Men having wives off the plantation will be allowed to visit them once a fortnight by getting passes from the manager.

Slave punishments

During slavery, white male plantation owners, their sons, brothers and other male acquaintances raped Black women without fear of punishment. Their reasons ranged from lascivious desire to acts of punishment. Black men were also sexually abused by slaveholders, and, sometimes, their wives. Others where whiped or sometimes torture devices where put around their arms, wrists, necks, or feet.


Many slaves where left with scars or mental damage and some even died if they where punished too much or too sevearly. More long term damage was that there still is racial disequallity