17th Century Legal Precedents on Race

Year Colony Latitude Longitude Key Provisions
1635 Barbados 13.19389 -59.5432 Governor declares that all Africans and Indians brought to the island to be considered enslaved unless they have a contract that says otherwise
1641 Massachusetts Bay 42.062868, -71.7184 Legalizes the enslavement of African captives within the colony
1643 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 Women of African descent and all men made subject to tithe to support the Church of England
1661 Barbados 13.19389 -59.5432 First comprehensive code for enslaved people enacted in English America, setting model for other colonies.
1661 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 Indentured servants who run away with enslaved people to serve time that enslaved person missed as well as time that they missed
1662 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 child’s legal status to follow that of the mother rather than the father
1664 Maryland 38.80666 -77.268 enslavement defined as a lifelong legal condition
1665 New York 40.69749 -73.9797 New England Assembly, composed largely of migrants from New England recognizes enslavement as lifelong condition.
1667 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 Denies that baptism provides legal grounds to sue for freedom
1670 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 Indians taken as captive outside of colony and imported enslaved. Indians captured within to serve from for duration from age 12-30
1679 New York 40.69749 -73.9797 Enslavement of Indians prohibited
1680 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 Enslaved Africans barred from carry arms, assembling, or leaving plantations held in bondgage without a pass from slaveholder.
1691 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 Whites barred from marry PoC, children of such unions between English women and African males to become indentured, mothers pay fine, become indentured. Slaveholders compensaed if enslaved runaways killed while captured. Free PoC ordered to leave colony
1692 Virginia 38.00354 -79.4588 Special courts created for trials concerning enslaved people accused of crimes.
1696 South Carolina 33.6248 -80.9465 Establishes first comprehensive code for enslaved persons, modeled after that of Barbados.

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