The Anti-Miscegenation Laws Passed by Several Western Legislatures Prohibited

Jacqueline Battalora [16] argues that the first laws prohibiting all marriages between whites and blacks, enacted in Virginia and Maryland, were a response of the planter elite to the problems they faced because of the socio-economic dynamics of the plantation system in the southern colonies. The bans in Virginia and Maryland were introduced at a time when slavery was not yet fully institutionalized. At that time, most of the forced laborers on the plantations were contract servants, and they were mostly Europeans. Some historians have suggested that the then unprecedented laws banning « interracial » marriages were originally invented by planters as divide-and-rule tactics after the uprising of European and African contract workers in cases like Bacon`s rebellion. According to this theory, the ban on interracial marriages was enacted to divide the ethnically mixed workforce, increasingly « mixed-race » into « whites » who received their freedom and « blacks » who were then treated as slaves rather than contract servants. By banning « interracial » marriage, it became possible to separate these two new groups and prevent a new rebellion. In An American Dilemma (1975), Gunner Myrdal notes that miscegenation policies evolved because intermarriage was a major concern in the order of discrimination of the white man, followed by sex with white women, use of public facilities, political suffrage, legal equality, and employment. Similarly, in White Racism: A Psychohistory (1970), Joel Kovel argues that sexuality is at the heart of racism and, therefore, laws of miscegenation. On the other hand, Oliver Cox argues in his book Caste, Class, and Race (1959) that economic exploitation, not a horror of interracial sex, was the real basis of racial prohibition. Cox further argues that miscegenation laws also deprived blacks of the opportunity to attain the cultural status of whites. White settlers also feared an alliance between African Americans and Indians and the numerical strength that such a union of oppressed peoples could produce.5 By 1888, public opinion in Utah, among both Mormons and non-Mormons, was clearly opposed to interracial marriage, especially between whites and blacks or Asians. 8.

In March, the territorial legislature passed a « marriage regulation law » that « annulled » marriage between « a black and a white person » and between « a Mongolian and a white person, » although intermarriage contracted outside the territory was honored in Utah. Given the widespread aversion to miscegenation, the adoption of the law is not particularly exceptional. However, Utah`s Anti-Miscegenation Act was not a separate law, but was part of a broader code governing acceptable marriage practices and procedures. The law also prohibited polygamy, incest, marrying « an idiot or a madman, » and minor unions. The unique content and legislative history of the bill need to be examined in more detail. The growing dynamics of scientific racism and eugenics, with their strong hostility to miscegenation, have helped create new prohibition laws in several Western states. For example, Wyoming, which had repealed its original anti-miscegenation law in 1882 after only thirteen years of existence, passed a new law in 1913 prohibiting whites from marrying « blacks » or « Orientals. » The Wyoming Statute of 1869 was interpreted as a way to preserve the small population of white women for white men instead of non-white workers, but in the early twentieth century, the number of non-whites in the state was insignificant and posed no significant competition for white brides, and so the 1913 law can be explained as the result of racial prejudice and xenophobia. which were common at that time. In another example, Arizona`s anti-miscegenation law was amended in 1931 to prevent whites from marrying « Hindus, Malays, blacks, Mongols, and Native Americans, » expanding the state`s earlier laws of 1865 and 1909. The Arizona Act has been challenged twice in court, in Kirby v. Kirby (1922) and In re Monks` Estate (1937). Both cases were essentially about property rights, and in each case the deciding court (the Arizona Supreme Court in Kirby, the California Court of Appeals in Monks`) rendered its decision on grounds other than the miscegenation clauses themselves, thereby tacitly upholding the constitutionality of Arizona`s ban on interracial marriage.

No brutality, no shame, no humiliation during all the years of Southern slavery possessed such a rogue character and qualities as cruel as the provisions of the laws of Illinois, Massachusetts and other states permitting the marriage of the Negro Jack Johnson to a woman of Caucasian descent. (Applause). Gentlemen, I move this resolution. so that the States of the Union have the opportunity to ratify it. Initially, in the 1660s, the first laws in Virginia and Maryland regulating white-black marriage only affected white marriages with black slaves (and mulattoes) and contract servants. In 1664, Maryland criminalized such marriages – the marriage of Irish-born Nell Butler to an African slave in 1681 was an early example of the application of this law. Virginia (1691) was the first English colony in North America to pass a law prohibiting free blacks and whites from marrying, followed by Maryland in 1692. It was the first time in American history that a law was invented that restricted access to spouses solely on the basis of « race, » not class or condition of servitude. [10] Later, these laws were extended to colonies with fewer slaves and free blacks, such as Pennsylvania and Massachusetts. In addition, after U.S. independence, similar laws were enacted in territories and states that prohibited slavery. In black Seattle, the efforts of the Colored Citizen`s Committee were supported by the community`s leading newspaper, the Northwest Enterprise, and major churches.

Churches such as the First AME and Mt. Zion`s Baptists gathered their churches, held meetings, and took the lead. In general, churches disseminated information about this to the black population of Seattle through their congregations. The Northwest Enterprise reported on February 7, 1935 and February 14, 1935, linking the effort to combat miscegenation with the churches and associated religious organizations working on the issue. Territorial law had long prohibited sexual relations between black and white Utah. In 1852, a « Service Act » was passed, prohibiting « sexual intercourse » between « any white person » and « any African race. » However, interracial marriage remained technically legal until 1888. Historian Nancy Cott argues that during the last third of the nineteenth century, the nation was increasingly involved in defining the role and interest of the state in marriage, to the point of « obsession. » A series of decisions in the United States The Supreme Court has declared that the regulation of marriage is entirely the responsibility of the government and upheld laws that have shaped a specific model of monogamous and intraracial marriage. In the typical case of polygamy Reynolds v. In the United States (1879), the court declared that the laws governing marriage were « within the legitimate limits of the power of any civil government. » In Maynard v.