Money for slaves and support of slavery by Henry Clay

Alexandria, Jan. 31, 1850

Dear Sir,   — When I received your letter, I had not bought the negroes you spoke of, but since that time, I have bought them.  All I have to say about the matter is, that we paid very high for the negroes, and cannot afford to sell the girl Emily for less than EIGHTEEN HUNDRED DOLLARS.  This may seem a high price to you, but cotton being very high, consequently slaves are high.  We have two or three offers for Emily from gentlemen from the South.   She is said to be the finest looking woman in this country. As for Haggar and her seven children, we will take $2,500 for them.  Sally and her four children, we will take for them $2,800.  You may seem a little surprised at the difference in the prices, but the difference in the negroes makes the difference in price.  We expect to start South with the negroes on the 8th February, and if you intend to do anything, you had better do it soon.      Yours respectfully,   BRUIN & HILL.

Editor comments:  Henry Clay proposes to bind the North not to interfere with such accursed transactions as are here developed.  What say the people of the North?

(Liberator, Feb 15, 1850, pg 1)

(This item is relative to an exchange of letters which are referred to but do not appear here – note how Garrison uses it to comment on Henry Clay.)