In response to the Stono rebellion of 1739, South Carolina passes the Negro Act of 1740, which severely restricts the movements of enslaved Africans.
In response to the Stono rebellion, the largest slave uprising in the British mainland colonies, South Carolina passes the Negro Act of 1740, which made it illegal for enslaved Blacks to move abroad, assemble in groups, raise food, earn money and learn to write English, similar to New York’s 1708 Act for Preventing the Conspiracy of Slaves law. It also enacted a 10-year moratorium against importing enslaved Africans, because they were considered more rebellious, and established penalties against slaveholders' harsh treatment of enslaved Africans. It required legislative approval for each act of manumission, which slaveholders had previously been able to arrange privately. This sharply reduced the rate of manumissions in the state.