Race and Slavery Petitions Project

Petition 20185115 Details

State:Alabama
Location:Greene
Location Type:County
Salutation:To The Honorable Wiley W. Mason Chancellor of the Middle Division of the State of Alabama, sitting at Eutaw in and for Greene County (MASON, Wiley W.)
Filing Date:1851-December
Ending Date:1853-October-10

General Petition Information

Abstract:On 1 May 1850, Rachel Pate of Green County married Samuel R. Pate of Sumter County. At the time of her marriage, Rachel owned a thirty-five-year-old slave named Celia and her five children, whom she had received by deed of gift from her father. After her marriage, Rachel "repaired" to the residence of her new husband in Sumter County, but left her slaves in the care of her mother and brother-in-law. Rachel contends that, shortly after the wedding, her husband "began to manifest a restless and unpleasant State of mind and feeling" towards her, which included "malicious charges against [her] chastity and character." When Samuel left on a trip to North Carolina, Rachel left their residence and returned to live with her mother, where she remained under the belief that her husband never intended to return. Following a suit against her brother-in-law, Henry W. Stafford, and one Rebecca E. Hall, Rachel's slaves were seized by the sheriff, and Samuel, as trustee of his wife's estate, attempted to get possession of them. Rachel claims that he intends to sell the slaves. She asserts that his misguided conduct, indeed, his "Mental Imbecility," made him wholly "unfit and incapable of conducting or managing her said Separate Estate and property." Rachel seeks the right to control and manage her property, including her slaves. In his answer to his wife's charges, Samuel Pate explains that she had confessed to him having led an unchaste life before their marriage and that the child she was carrying was another man's. She went so far as stating that there were five candidates to her child's fatherhood. Samuel claims that he found out the confession was probably unfounded and he was eager for reconciliation with his wife. Furthermore, he asserts that he is fit to manage his wife's estate, including her slaves, he explains, "and is advised that by law he has the right and is the proper person to manage and conduct it."
Result:dismissed; appealed; abated
# of Petition Pages:4
Related Documents:Copies of Certificate of Appeal, 15 May 1854; Affidavit and Bond, Samuel R. Pate, 20 October 1851; Summons, Henry Stafford and Rebecca Hall, 20 October 1851; Writ of Seizure, 21 October 1851; Bond, Henry Stafford and Rebecca Hall, 22 October 1851; Affidavit, Abner McMillian, 30 December 1851; Injunction Bond and Writ of Injunction, McMillian, 2 January 1852; Subpoena, Samuel R. Pate, 2 January 1852; Answer, Samuel R. Pate, 11 March 1852; Exceptions to Samuel Pate's Answer [Missing Pages], ca. 1852-3; Depositions, Kennedy and Kirkland [Missing Pages], ca. 1852-3; Transcript of Case, 30 June 1853; Decree, 10 October 1853
Pages of Related Documents:13

People Associated with Petition 20185115

Slaves:6
Free Persons of Color:0
Defendants:1
Petitioners:2
Other People:1

Citation Information

Repository: Alabama Department of Archives and History, Montgomery, Alabama

  • Alabama Supreme Court Cases, Supreme Court Records, January Term 1856
  • Volume: 189
  • Page: 1-12, 20, 72-73

Processing Information

Record Created:7/15/1996
Record Final Edited:7/5/1999
Record Last Updated on:5/24/2007 10:01:00 AM