Wednesday, October 19, 2016

New HeinOnline Library on the History of Slavery

The Goodson Law Library's HeinOnline subscription now includes the new library Slavery in America and the World: History, Culture & Law. Edited by Paul Finkelman of Albany Law School, Duke's Fall 2012 John Hope Franklin Visiting Professor of American Legal History, the collection compiles slavery-related treatises, law review articles, case law, and statutes into a single place, which is described as "all known legal materials on slavery in the United States and the English-speaking world."

The collection includes such seminal historical works as Catterall's Judicial Cases Concerning American Slavery and the Negro, a five-volume digest of early American case law concerning slaves. More modern works on slavery can also be found in the "Articles" tab as well as the "UNC Press" tab, featuring more recent e-books from the University of North Carolina Press.

The collection may be browsed or searched. For example, researchers who wish to learn more about the 1831 Nat Turner rebellion in Virginia (the subject of the current Hollywood film The Birth of a Nation) might search across this library for "Nat Turner." Results will include a reprinted pamphlet, Confession of Nat Turner, Leader of the Negro Insurrection in Southampton County. Results also include several 19th and 20th-century treatises on the topic, such as William Sidney Drewry's The Southampton Insurrection (1900), a compilation of interviews with surviving eyewitnesses. (Nate Parker, the writer/director/star of the 2016 film, has cited Drewry's work as important source material.)

The new Hein library now appears in the Duke University Libraries' HeinOnline landing page. Library users may access this library from anywhere on Duke's campus; Duke University students, faculty, and staff may also access HeinOnline from off-campus with a NetID and password. However, readers who are unaffiliated with Duke, or unable to visit a subscribing library in person, may also register directly with HeinOnline for free access to the Slavery in America and the World library. As noted in its October 5 press release, "The crisis revolving around race relations in America and the recent events surrounding this crisis have made the Hein Company rethink the idea of financially profiting from the sale of a collection on slavery."

To locate additional works in the Goodson Law Library about slavery and the law, consult the Duke Libraries Catalog or Ask a Librarian.