Revision to Freedmen's Contract with Henry A. Middleton, January 1870

Printable PDF Version

Document Description:

During Reconstruction, plantation owners and their former slaves signed contracts to determine what conditions the freedmen would work for the plantation. This partial freedmen's contract from 1870 explains how the freedmen previously received their portion of the crop from the plantation owner, with the author stating that he proposes to now give each field hand a credit of fifty cents a day for use in the plantation store or redeemable for cash after the first of the year. The plantation owner also gives each hand one acre of rice land and one acre of high land to plant their own crops.


Partial Freedman Contract, 1870.  Middleton Family Papers.  Call #12/162/12.  South Carolina Historical Society, Charleston, South Carolina.

Correlating SC Social Studies Academic Standards:

Standard USHC 8-4: The student will demonstrate an understanding of the impact of Reconstruction on the people and government of South Carolina.

Indicator 8-4.2 Summarize Reconstruction in South Carolina and its effects on daily life in South Carolina, including the experiences of plantation owners, small farmers, freedmen, women, and northern immigrants.

Note: Although this document was originally posted as part of a lesson specifically designed to teach the above standard, other Social Studies Standards may apply.

Lessons Using This Document:

Where Do We Go From Here? - Eighth Grade