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At the baptismal font: manumission patterns and manumitted slaves' profile in the baptism records of Campinas (1829-1845)

Grant number: 16/03217-9
Support Opportunities:Scholarships in Brazil - Scientific Initiation
Effective date (Start): May 01, 2016
Effective date (End): October 31, 2017
Field of knowledge:Humanities - History - History of Brazil
Principal Investigator:Ricardo Figueiredo Pirola
Grantee:Talison Mendes Picheli
Host Institution: Instituto de Filosofia e Ciências Humanas (IFCH). Universidade Estadual de Campinas (UNICAMP). Campinas , SP, Brazil


This research aims to study the manumission patterns and the profile of slaves freed at the baptismal font in the city of Campinas between the years 1829 and 1845. The fact that the vast majority of the baptized children were between 8 and 10 days of age leads us to a third objective, which is to analyze the demographic profile of the manumitted slaves' parents. We believe that it was through the relationships that parents have established with the slave owners that made possible the freedom at the baptismal font for their newborn children. To accomplish these goals we will study the baptism record books of free and freed people, as well as the slaves' ones - as the manumission records were recorded either in one or the other book. The documentation is at the Edgard Leuenroth Archive, maintained by Unicamp, in the form of microfilms; and it is also scanned in the "Family Search" project, by the Mormon Church, which makes it possible to give greater flexibility to the archive work. The literature on the topic has emphasized the importance of the issues involving the conquest of manumission to better understand the meanings of slavery and freedom in the nineteenth-century Brazil. However, we realize that most of the researches on the subject of manumissions have been concerned mainly with the freedoms obtained by manumission charters, wills and inventories. There have been few studies on those obtained at baptism. Thus, we believe that the sources chosen for this research will allow us to contribute to the historiographical debate concerning the manumissions in nineteenth-century Brazil.

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