Clotel: Or, the President’s Daughter, A Narrative of Slave Life in the United States Characters

  • Last updated on December 10, 2021

Author: William Wells Brown

First published: 1853

Genre: Novel

Locale: Richmond, Virginia; New Orleans, Louisiana; Natchez and Vicksburg, Mississippi; and Dunkirk, France

Plot: Historical

Time: 1817–1842

Clotel, an attractive quadroon, sixteen years of age at the opening of the novel. She is Currer's older daughter. She is purchased by Horatio Green, becomes his concubine, and gives birth to Mary. Clotel later is sold. She commits suicide after she escapes from her new owners and is captured by slave catchers in Washington, D.C.

Currer, a forty-year-old mulatto woman. Currer is the former housekeeper of Thomas Jefferson, who, according to the novel, fathered her two daughters. Currer and her daughters are sold in Richmond, Virginia. Separated from her daughters, Currer later dies of yellow fever in Natchez, Mississippi.

Althesa, the younger of Currer's daughters, fourteen years old when the novel opens. Sold in the slave market of New Orleans, she marries Henry Morton and has two children, Ellen and Jane.

Horatio Green, the white Virginian who purchases Clotel as his concubine.

The Reverend John Peck, the Methodist parson of Natchez who purchases Currer.

Georgiana Peck, the Reverend Peck's daughter. She believes in abolition and manumits her servants before her death.

Mary, Clotel's daughter and a servant of Horatio Green and his wife. She eventually marries George Green.

George Green, a mulatto servant of Horatio Green who passes as white. He becomes romantically attached to Mary. After a separation, they reunite and marry in France.

Categories: Characters