Enslaved people made up the majority of the population in South Carolina in 1860. The state required an annual tax from slaveholders who “rented” their “property” to others. The amount was directly proportional to the enslaved person’s level of skill, so that the higher the skill, the higher the tax. Badges like this one from the Shrine’s collections for a porter in 1840 were required to be worn any time an individual was laboring for someone else. The practice of renting enslaved people was traumatic as it separated people from their homes and loved ones.