Charleston William Faux, Memorable Days in America, Part 1 (London, 1823), 95.



Charleston William Faux, Memorable Days in America, Part 1 (London, 1823), 95.

Includes music itself or text of song


Identity of singers; solo/group

galley slave (not sure if it is an enslaved Black American or a prisoner)


voices, oars


galley (ship)





Ornamentation / improvisation




Geographical location

South Carolina

Notable adjectives

"plaintive", "barbarous"


Met my venerable friend Nathaniel Russell, Esq. and his son-in-law, Mr. Middleton,
living in a nest of roses, and both regretting the cause of [78] my letter respecting
the negroes, because it would make a deep impression to their prejudice in the
northern states. I saw and ate ripe figs, pears, apples, and plums in abundance, the rich productions of this generous climate, which now fill the markets, as though it were Autumn instead of June. Terribly stung by mosquitoes, fleas, and bugs. Feeling inflammatory symptoms, something like bilious fever, I took two grains of calomel, and a very warm relaxing bath, and found reljef. I drank also less toddy and punch, which , in this country, are certainly bilious. I noticed today the galley - slaves all singing songs in chorus, regulated by the motion of their oars; the music was barbarously harmonious. Some were plaintive love - songs. The verse was their own, and abounding either in praise or satire, intended for kind or unkind masters.


Faux in this passage describes some of his experiences in visiting South Carolina, and he writes about seeing enslaved people in a galley.

Bias of author

Bias presented in this text is about average for nineteenth-century sources written by learned, traveling white men.

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