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Future Confederate Captain and CSS Virginia Officer’s

Racist Rant Against the Free Blacks of Barbados


John R. Eggleston. Autograph Letter Signed, to “Tom” (family member?). December 27, 1858, aboard the USS Atlanta, Barbados. 3 pp.


Confederate Officer's Rant Against Barabadian Free Blacks

  • Lt. John Eggleston would later serve on the CSS Virginia for her entire career, and eventually rise to the rank of Captain in the Confederate Navy.


    Here, he is appalled at the lack of deference from the locals: “I am perfectly willing to leave Barbados and its free, impertinent darkies. I would like to lasso some 50 or 100 and put them to work in a cotton field. I am convinced that such a field is the only one in which the darky character can be truly developed. Here they do nothing but stroll about the streets & chatter like so many monkeys from sunrise to sunset. We employ them to coal our vessels and how I have wished for Jack Stringer with a bull whip among them whenever I have had anything to do with them.


    We have just heard news of the last British outrages in Central America. What overbearing coal rascals they are. And our Government is served exactly right, in not having a naval force on hand to buck their demands and pretentions [sic] on all occasions. By this time tomorrow we shall be rolling about once more in the “busom” of the great deep. In ten or eleven days we expect to get to Pernambuco…”

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