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Colonial Virginia Quotes

They Said It

"All servants imported and brought into the Country...who were not Christians in their native Country...shall be accounted and be slaves. All Negro, mulatto and Indian slaves within this dominion...shall be held to be real estate. If any slave resist his master...correcting such slave, and shall happen to be killed in such correction...the master shall be free of all punishment...as if such accident never happened."

- Excerpt from the Virginia Slave Code of 170534
"Such was the insolence of the free negroes at that time, that the Assembly thought it necessary . . . to fix a perpetual brand upon free negroes and mulattos by excluding them from that great privilege of a freeman."

- Virginia Governor William Gooch explaining why free blacks were denied the vote in 172335
"Magna Charta, Magna F____a"

- Rumored response of Virginia Governor Francis Nicholson to the accusation that he was violating England's historic commitment to a government restrained by law36
"Wherever you travel . . . your ears are constantly astonished at the number of colonels, majors, and captains that you hear mentioned: In short, the whole country seems at first to you a retreat of heroes."

- Edward Kimber, an English traveler to America in 1745, on southerners' obsession with military titles37

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