Race and Slavery Petitions Project

Petition 21085313 Details

Location Type:County
Salutation:To the Honorable A B Dawson Vice Chancellor of the State of Mississippi, for the Southern District (DAWSON, A. B.)
Filing Date:1853-March-18
Ending Date:1853-March-23

General Petition Information

Abstract:Alzonuth M. Whitehead charges her husband, James H. Whitehead, with being "habitually intemperate" and claims that he has purchased a slave named Emily and lives with her in "open & notorious adultery." She also states that James "has given to said Emily precedence over your oratrix in the management of his household affairs." On one occasion "your oratrix while moderately correcting her servants in the presence of said James H. Whitehead and the said negro woman Emily, received a blow from the said Emily, inflicted by her in a fit of anger." When Alzonuth attempted to punish her "in a manner suitable to her offense," James intervened and threatened to kill his wife if she "attempted to punish or correct the said Emily." Although the petitioner persuaded James to leave Emily and stop drinking for a time, he soon resumed his "adulterous intercourse" with the slave. Alzonuth states that the defendant "has become so infatuated by his passion for the said Emily that he has neither the power nor the desire to conceal the nature of his intercourse with her" and that "his undisguised fondness and caresses" for Emily have alienated his children. Fearing that James, who owns no land, will move with the slaves he owns beyond the jurisdiction of the court, the petitioner prays that she be granted a divorce, custody of the children, the return of her separate slave property, and maintenance and that the defendant be required to post bond.
# of Petition Pages:7
Related Documents:PARs #21085314, #21085315; Order, 23 March 1853
Pages of Related Documents:1

People Associated with Petition 21085313

Free Persons of Color:0
Other People:1

Citation Information

Repository: Adams County Courthouse, Natchez, Mississippi

  • Records of the Vice Chancery Court
  • Document Number 748

Processing Information

Record Created:6/12/1997
Record Final Edited:6/19/2001
Record Last Updated on:5/14/2008 8:25:00 PM