According to the Gradual Manumission Act of 1799, slaveholders could abandon their slave's children within one year of their birth by notifying the clerk of the city or town they resided in. The child would then be bound out by the overseer of the poor until they reached the age of 21. These abandonded children would be considered paupers and would be liable to be bound out by the overseer of the poor. The state of New York supported and maintained these children at a price of $3.50 per month. In 1802 the law was modified: the monthly compensation was lowered to $2.00 and would only be paid until a child turned four.
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