“A Sett of Possitive Obstinate People”

Travis Glasson

in Mastering Christianity

Published in print November 2011 | ISBN: 9780199773961
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199919017 | DOI:
“A Sett of Possitive Obstinate People”

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  • Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)


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Between 1710 and 1838, the SPG owned a Barbados sugar plantation and hundreds of enslaved people. Its donor intended Codrington plantation to fund the creation and maintenance of a college. The Society also took it as an opportunity to demonstrate to other slave owners that enslaved people could be converted to Christianity and still produce profits. This chapter examines missionary encounters on Codrington in the eighteenth century. Using demographic information and a combination of business records and missionary reports, it shows how enslaved people on the plantation largely rejected efforts to convert them because the Society’s mastership permeated religious exchanges and because the estate’s largely African-born population retained their own religious and cultural traditions. In this way, this chapter reveals the harshness of life for enslaved people on Codrington and the way that they exercised control over their own cultural and religious lives.

Keywords: Codrington; Barbados; Africans; Conversion; slavery; estate; plantation; sugar; Caribbean; Slave ownership

Chapter.  12874 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Early Modern History (1500 to 1700)

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