noun American History.

an emigrant from Europe to America who obtained passage by becoming an indentured servant for a specified period of time.

Origin of redemptioner

First recorded in 1765–75; redemption + -er1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for redemptioner

Historical Examples of redemptioner

  • That's Black Jim Lewis, that stole me away from home and sold me for a redemptioner.


    Edward Eggleston

  • Mr. Quimby bought him at the wharf out of a redemptioner ship.

    Pencil Sketches

    Eliza Leslie

  • Overdursh,--, Dutch redemptioner bought with his family, 167.

    George Washington: Farmer

    Paul Leland Haworth

  • This proprietor, who is now so wealthy, came over a redemptioner, and owes his present wealth to his industry and frugality.

    Travels Through North America, v. 1-2

    Berhard Saxe-Weimar Eisenach

  • The Sot-Weed Factor gives a much less rose-colored account of the life of a redemptioner.

    The Colonial Cavalier

    Maud Wilder Goodwin

British Dictionary definitions for redemptioner



history an emigrant to Colonial America who paid for his passage by becoming an indentured servant
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for redemptioner

"indentured servant," 1775, from redemption + -er (1).

REDEMPTIONER. One who redeems himself or purchases his release from debt or obligation to the master of a ship by his services; or one whose services are sold to pay the expenses of his passage to America. [Webster, 1830]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper