Slave trade

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SLAVE TRADE, criminal law. The infamous traffic in human flesh, which though not prohibited by the law of nations, is now forbidden by the laws and treaties of most civilized states.
     2. By the constitution of the United States, art. 1, s. 9, it is provided, that the "migration or importation of such persons as any of the states now existing (in 1789,) shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the congress, prior to the year one thousand eight hundred and eight." Previously to that date several laws were enacted, which it is not within the plan of this work to cite at large or to analyze; they are here referred to, namely; act of 1794, c. 11, 1 Story's laws U. S. 319; act of 1800, c. 51, 1 Story's Laws U. S. 780 act of 1803, c. 63, 2 Story's Laws U. S 886; act of 1807, c. 77, 2 Story's Laws U. S. 1050; these several acts forbid citizens of the United States, under certain circumstances, to equip or build vessels for the purpose of carrying on the slave trade, and the last mentioned act makes it highly penal to import slaves into the United States after the first day of January, 1808. The act of 1818, c. 86, 3 Story's Laws U. S. 1698 the act of 1819, c. 224, 3 Story's Laws U. S. 1752; and the act of 1820, c. 113, 3 Story's Laws U. S. 1798, contain further prohibition of the slave trade, and punish tho violation of their several provisions with the highest penalties of the law. Vide, generally, 10 Wheat. R. 66; 2 Mason, R. 409; 1 Acton, 240; 1 Dodson, 81, 91, 95; 2 Dodson, 238; 6 Mass. R. 358; 2 Cranch, 336; 3 Dall. R. 297; 1 Wash. C. C. Rep. 522; 4 Id. 91; 3 Mason, R. 175; 9 Wheat. R. 391; 6 Cranch, 330; 5 Wheat. R. 338; 8 Id. 380; 10 Id. 312; 1 Kent, Com. 191.