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Research Starter: Convict Labor Leasing in Florida
In the early 20th century, nearly all state prisoners were leased to private companies for hard labor in often deplorable conditions. Prisoners were expected to labor from sunrise to sunset mining phosphate, tapping pine trees for turpentine, clearing swamps, harvesting timber or building roads.
- Photographs, Martin Tabert
- Photographs, Convicts leased to harvest timber
- Selected Documents, Letter asking Governor Doyle Carlton to consider using state convicts to help complete the public road between Graceville and Chipley
- Fernandina Death and Burial Records, 1896-1916, Joe Smith
- Floridiana Article, Harry Wesson and J.B. Brown: Justice in Early Twentieth Century Florida
- Audio, Bound to Ride: Train Songs from the Florida Folklife Collection
- Photographs, Raiford Prison inmates filling milk containers, 1927
- Selected documents, Resolutions by Hillsborough and Pinellas County citizens condemning the convict lease system in Florida
- Selected documents, Telegram from Mary McLeod Bethune to Governor Doyle Carlton Protesting the Use of Black Female Convicts for Carrying and Installing Heavy Posts in Jacksonville, 1932
- Photographs, Raiford Prison inmate making license plates
- Drobney, Jeffrey A. “Where Palm and Pine Are Blowing: Convict Labor in the North Florida Turpentine Industry, 1877-1923.” Florida Historical Quarterly 72.4 (1994): 411–434
- Mancini, Matthew J. One Dies, Get Another: Convict Leasing in the American South, 1866-1928. Columbia: University of South Carolina Press, 1996.
- Powell, J. C. The American Siberia; Or, Fourteen Years’ Experience in a Southern Convict Camp. Chicago, IL: H. J. Smith & Co., 1891.