Race and Slavery Petitions Project

Petition 20185424 Details

Location:St. Clair
Location Type:County
Salutation:To Honl. A J. Walker Chancellor of the Norther Division of the State of Alabama (WALKER, A. J.)
Filing Date:1854-March-9
Ending Date:1857-February-12

General Petition Information

Abstract:Some years prior to her marriage in 1847, Mary C. Edwards of St. Clair County, received three slaves--Dice and her two children--as a gift from her mother. After her marriage, she moved with her slaves and husband, Wiley C. Edwards, a widower, to Jasper County, Mississippi. Upon arriving, however, she discovered that one Willis Herrin lived in "open prostitution" with a mulatto woman named Harriet, one of her husband's slaves and they did so in the same house where the newlyweds lived. There was also evidence that Wiley had fathered one or more of Harriet's children, and that he was using Willis Herrin as a cover for his illicit relationship with Harriet. In addition, Mary asserts, her husband had a violent temper; on one occasion "he choked her very much, about the neck with his hands in so much that Oratrix was unable to move, and the prints of his fingers were on her neck for several days." It soon became apparent that she could not remain in Mississippi. Only four months after their marriage, she returned to Alabama. Seven years later, to protect her slave property, including a slave she had subsequently purchased from her mother's estate, Mary Edwards files for divorce and alimony.
Result:partially granted; appealed; affirmed
# of Petition Pages:5
Related Documents:Alabama Supreme Court Docket Page, 3 January 1857; Copies of Order of Publication, 13 March 1854; Decree Pro Confesso, 11 September 1854; Order of Continuance, August 1854; Order and Certificate of Transfer, 11 June 1855; Affidavit, Mary Edward, 9 March 1854; Interrogatories, 29 June 1855; Call to Answer, Oliver C. Dease, Edward Dease, Edwin Caraway, et al., 29 June 1855; Depositions, Edward Dease, Peter B. Owen, Willis Herrin, 6 July 1855; Opinion, July 1855; Final Decree, 1855; Bond for Appeal, A. Byers, 27 December 1856; Certification of Transcript, 27 December 1856; Appeal for Divorce Decree, 27 January 1857
Pages of Related Documents:11

People Associated with Petition 20185424

Free Persons of Color:0
Other People:1

Citation Information

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

  • Alabama Supreme Court Cases, Supreme Court Records [1857]
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  • Document Number
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  • Volume: 209
  • Page: 1-14
  • Microfilm:

Processing Information

Record Created:8/1/1996
Record Final Edited:7/29/1999
Record Last Updated on:6/14/2007 2:08:00 PM