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Book source: Manumissies in Suriname 1832-1863, Okke ten Hove and Frank Dragtenstein, Clacs & IBS, Utrecht, 1997. ISBN 90-393-1460-8

Subject: [History] Manumissies

The Manumissie book is a register from 1832-1863. It explains that under certain conditions slaves were freed. The conditions could be that the slave was a concubine of a white male and the children of such an arrangement. Another condition to free a slave was faithful service to his master. A smaller portion of slaves was able to buy out their freedom.

What is manumissie ? It comes from Roman law manumissio or 'to send away'.
The register is a compilation of some 6,364 names of all slaves who were freed in the period of 1832 to 1 July 1863. (the date of the abolition of slavery).

It contains such information as:
new family name, slave name, gender, age, owner, profession of the free slave, date of manumissie and source/reference.

Let us look at an example such as the name "Wolf". On 20 Dec 1841 a female slave Adjuba received her freedom with the name of Adjuba Sara Wolf. She had three children: Daniel, Josephine and Mariann. The slave owner was Daniel Jessurun Lobo, Jzn. 'Lobo' is Portuguese and means 'Wolf'.

The freed slaves could not take an existing name thus they took Wolf as their new family name. They were also registered with the Jewish community. Since 1759, there was already a black jewish community in Suriname.

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