"Slavery, or an absolute and unlimited power in the master over
the life and fortune of the slave, is unauthorized by the common
law. Indeed, it is repugnant to the principles of natural law,
that such a state should subsist in any social system.
The reasons which we sometimes see assigned for the origin
and the continuance of slavery appear, when examined to the bottom,
to be built upon a false foundation. In the enjoyment of their
persons and of their property, the common law protects all."
(1742-1798) Member of Continental Congress, signed Declaration of Independence; U.S. Supreme Court Justice and delegate from Pennsylvania
The Natural Rights of Individuals, 1804. Reference: The Works of the Honorable James Wilson, B. Wilson, ed., vol. 2 (488)