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State v. Post

Supreme Court of New Jersey
20 N.J.L. 368 (1845)


Facts

In 1804, the New Jersey legislature enacted a law declaring every child born of a slave after July 4, 1804 to be free, though remaining a servant until reaching a certain age. By 1844 the few hundred slaves in New Jersey who had not yet been manumitted had a legal claim against their masters for maintenance if they were unable to support themselves. In 1844 New Jersey adopted a new state constitution. A provision in the new constitution declared that all men are free and possess certain unalienable rights, including the right to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Nevius, J.)

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