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  • Print publication year: 2020
  • Online publication date: January 2020

Chapter 5 - Legal Troubles

Summary

New Orleans authorities accused William H. Williams of violating a Louisiana state law of 1817 against the importation of convict slaves. Williams, as it turned out, had a long history in the courtroom. Although his business practices helped him largely avoid redhibition suits, and he was never charged with slave stealing or kidnapping as were some of his slave–dealing counterparts, he did face multiple suits lodged by free blacks who claimed that they were unlawfully imprisoned in the Yellow House, Williams’ slave jail.