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...(1809) which banned US trade with Britain and France. Claiborne was in his New Orleans office when he heard that ships full of refugees were seeking asylum in New Orleans. He knew allowing them in violated federal laws as some of them had brought their slaves (and slaves were considered property that could not be traded). However, when the white people of New Orleans heard about the refugees, they immediately held meetings and wrote petitions insisting that Claiborne allowed the refugees to enter New Orleans. The mayor too wrote to Claiborne, referring to the further development of plantations as the major reason for allowing them in. Claiborne succumbed and allowed the refugees into New Orleans. Moreover, Congress did not raise reasonable questions when they heard about it, and as a result the New Orleans slaves’ population grew by a quarter of what it earlier was.
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