Prison and Plantation: Crime, Justice, and Authority in Massachusetts and South Carolina, 1767-1878

Michael Stephen Hindus.

Published July 1980. Order online through The University of North Carolina Press. ISBN: 9-780-8078-1417-8.

This broad, comparative study examines the social, economic, and legal contexts of crime and authority in two vastly different states over a one hundred year period. Massachusetts–an urban, industrial, and heterogeneous northern state–chose the penitentiary in its attempt to minimize the role of informal and extralegal authority while South Carolina–a rural southern slave state–systematically reduced its formal legal institutions, frequently relying on vigilantism.

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