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House of Burgesses Legalizes Hereditary Slavery

Virginia’s House of Burgesses enacts a colonial statute legalizing hereditary slavery: partum sequitur ventrem. Virginia’s legislative assembly lacks plenary authority to legalize hereditary slavery or to strip a person born in the colony of Virginia of British subjecthood or liberty at birth. Virginia’s colonial statute is void ab initio since neither England’s King or the Parliament gives assent or ratifies colonial statute.

New York, Connecticut, and New Hampshire Restrict Rights to Bear Arms

Massachusetts reverses a ruling dating back to 1652 that allowed blacks to train in arms. New York, Connecticut, and New Hampshire pass similar laws restricting the bearing of arms.

Maryland Incorporates Royal African Company

Maryland incorporates the Royal African Company to assure a ready supply of African slaves.

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