Commentary No. 049
Date: 1605, May 12. Santo Domingo.
Theme: Inventory of property of Captain Gerónimo Agüero Bardeci, including black household slaves, seized by orders from the President of the Audiencia, Antonio Osorio in Santo Domingo, 1605
Source: Archivo General de Indias, Escribanía 3-A, CUNY Dominican Studies Institute Dominican Colonial Documents Collection
In 1605, La Española’s military captain Gerónimo Agüero was accused and tried by the judicial authorities for being an accomplice to or benefiting from smuggling activities in the Banda del Norte region after being commissioned precisely to stop this economic practice, socially widespread among the settlers of the region, but criminal in the eyes of the colony’s authorities.
Part of the judicial proceedings against Agüero comprised confiscating his property, including his household furniture and other items, along with eight Black slaves, all listed in the inventory produced to officialize the confiscation. The slaves are listed as four women described as Black, another woman described as mulata, and a Black boy and two children, one male and one female, described as mulaticos.
Three of the Black female slaves are identified with ethnic names, two as Bran and one as Arada. Two additional female slaves appeared as criollas or creoles, meaning born in the island; one listed as Black and the other of mixed race.