Southerners felt stung by the accusations that Abolitionists brought against the South and its peculiar institution, and developed a defensive attitude. The Annals of Newberry praises James Farnandis for his many virtues, but most importantly,
He deserves to be noticed, too, as a slave owner. His negroes were well-housed, well-clothed, well-fed, never over-worked, and whenever an overseer exercised any cruelty on his people, he was instantly dismissed. When he removed to Mississippi, his slaves were ready to, and some of them did, abandon wives and children (of their own will) rather than be sold, left here, and this be separated from their master. This is at it should be. I would have every Southern planter like him, and the, indeed, we might say to Abolitionist vaunting, “Cease, vipers, you bite a file.”
Of course, what the willingness of men to abandon their wives and children rather than to be sold to another slave owner implies about other slave owners is not spelled out.