Which U.S. Presidents Owned Slaves?

John Adams (1797-1801)

1776: John Adams discussed trade resolutions before the continental congress: "There is one Resolution I will not omit.  Resolved that no Slaves be imported into any of the thirteen colonies." (Peabody,p 197)


1776: John Adams was delighted with Jefferson’s draft of the Declaration of Independence and its “flights of oratory... especially that concerning Negro slavery, which, though I knew his Southern brethren would never suffer to pass in Congress, I certainly would never oppose.” (Peabody, p201)


1819: “Negro Slavery is an evil of colossal magnitude.” (Ellis,p140)


1820: “I shudder when I think of the calamities which slavery is likely to produce in this country. You would think me mad if I were to describe my anticipations…If the gangrene is not stopped I can see nothing but insurrection of the blacks against the whites.”(Smith, p 138)


1821: “Slavery in this Country I have seen hanging over it like a black cloud for half a century…”(Ellis p138)


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