Race and Slavery Petitions Project

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PAR Number 11279202

State: North Carolina Year: 1792

Abstract: Samuel Jasper seeks to emancipate Jack "for merritorious Services." In a letter to John Hamilton, Jasper recounts that Jack, "a Negro the Property of Henry White," was instrumental in retaking a schooner that had been seized by "a British Privateer." He further states that "after we returned home his master abused him somewhat" and "Jack applyd to us for redress." Jasper states that his brother bought Jack "and in his last Will Sold sd Jack his freedom by his Paying his Exct ₤100. The petitioner attests that "the said fellow behaves himself well. Honest and Industrious is Very Manerly to all and has Comanded a Schooner for me five years."

PAR Number 11279213

State: North Carolina Year: 1792
Location: Craven Location Type: County

Abstract: John Handy, the "reputed father" of two-year-old mulatto Peggy Handy, purchased his daughter from Elizabeth Vail; he then loaned the child back to the former owner for the "purpose of maintaining and educating her and intending that she should afterwards be free." A mistake in the transfer deed, however, meant that Peggy would not remain with Vail after the term for which she had been lent but would revert to John Handy's estate. Fearing his intentions "would be thereby defeated," he issued a deed of emancipation, saying that after the loan period Peggy would "be forever free." Vail asks the legislature to free "the said Mulatto girl."

PAR Number 11279505

State: North Carolina Year: 1795
Location: Perquimans Location Type: County

Abstract: Nathan Creecy states that he bought at auction a "condemned Negro woman" named Peg and her child Hannah for seventy-eight pounds, "a large price at that time for a Negro woman & child that had once enjoyed freedom." Creecy then learned that Hannah had been born prior to Peg's manumission and was the slave of Robert Newby. Wishing to keep mother and child together (Hannah was only ten months old), Creecy bought her as a slave until she reached age eighteen, "at which time she is subject to be taken from your petitioner and sold for the benefit of the Publick." Creecy also relates that he bought Peg's two-year-old son Tom, until he reached age twenty-one, "at which time he is subject to be taken from your petitioner and sold for the benefit of the Publick." Having experienced "much expense & trouble in raising the said boy & it being the request of the former owner of said Negroes that they should stay together," Creecy asks that a law be passed "establishing & confirming the right of said Negroes Tom & Hannah in him."

PAR Number 11279812

State: North Carolina Year: 1798
Location: Pasquotank Location Type: County

Abstract: Lemuel Overnton, "of mix'd Blood but free Born," acknowledges that he "did faithfully Serve in the Last American Warr with Great Britain." He further reveals that, "by Consent," he was able to marry a slave woman named Rose and "had my Eldest Son John by her." Overton states that he was able to purchase said Rose and John and that he has a second son named Burdock. The petitioner prays that his case be taken into consideration and that his wife and two sons be emancipated and called "after his own name Overnton."

PAR Number 11280205

State: North Carolina Year: 1802
Location: Craven Location Type: County

Abstract: John Carruthers Stanly, a free man of color, submits that he purchased "a negro male of the age of two years, named John, whom he considers his child"; in 1801, he purchased "a mulatto child named John, who is the result of a matrimonial connection between your Petitioner and Kitty." Stanly, of the opinion that "it is inconsistent with nature, for the parent to wish his child in a state of vassalage, either to another or himself," asks that said children be manumitted. He requests that two-year-old John be "known in future by the name of James Florence" and that the other child "hereafter to be known & distinguished by the name of John Stewart Stanly."

PAR Number 11280404

State: North Carolina Year: 1804
Location: Guilford Location Type: County

Abstract: Harry Ash, “a freeman of Colour," represents that he purchased his wife America from Milla Clarke in 1802; in 1803 "his Wife the said America was delivered of a daughter named Jemima." Desirous that his wife and child "should be entitled to the privileges of free persons of Colour," the petitioner prays that the Legislature "Liberate them by the names of America and Jemima Ash."

PAR Number 11280506

State: North Carolina Year: 1805
Location: Perquimans Location Type: County

Abstract: Joseph White, administrator of Alexander Stafford, represents that by order of the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions for Perquimans County, February Term 1802, "Negro Woman Amy and her three children, Ruth, Dolley, and Mourning" were sold by the sheriff "as having been emancipated contrary to the provision of the several acts of the legislature"; Alexander Stafford "became the purchaser" of said family for the sum of £333. White explains that a certain John Saunders claimed said slaves and contested the sale and that the Superior Court of Edenton District in 1803 "determined the negroes aforesaid were the property of the claimant John Saunders." The petitioner therefore prays that the state treasurer be authorized "to repay" to him, as administrator, the aforesaid purchase price, with interest, since "the estate of your Petitioner's Intestate has not only paid the sum aforesaid but has lost the negroes."

PAR Number 11281004

State: North Carolina Year: 1810
Location: Greene Location Type: County

Abstract: Bryan Lane charges that constable Nathan Holmes colluded with Benjamin Saules in the illegal purchase of two female slaves, seized "by virtue of an Execution which was in fact obtained ... to the amount of about Twenty Dollars against your memorialist." He further declares that "he had part of the money & beged [Holmes] to stay the Sale till your memorialist could to a neighbours house within a half mile where he had full assurance of geting the balance." Lane asserts, however, that Holmes, who "had an Interest in the Sale," refused and the slaves Comfort and Selah, "worth at least Five hundred Dollars," were knocked off “to a Certain Benjamin Saules ... at the reduced price of about Forty Shillings each." The petitioner therefore prays that a law be passed “fully & absolutely confirming the title of said negroes in him, or at least making void the said Sale.”

PAR Number 11281806

State: North Carolina Year: 1818
Location: Randolph Location Type: County

Abstract: George Sears, a free man of color, states that William Bell, as executor of the will of Richard Sears, emancipated him in 1809. He further represents that he took as his wife a slave named Tillah that he had purchased from the said Bell for the sum of $300. Sears, a blacksmith, acknowledges that he erroneously believed that his marriage to the said Tillah would free her as well as confer a free status to any children they might have. Sears now realizes that his said wife and their two children are still "considered slaves unless they are Emancipated by an act of your Honourable body." He therefore prays that an act be passed "to Emancipate & Set free his said Wife Tillah Sears and his two daughters Patsey Sears & Polly Sears and render them Competent in Law to inherit the Estate of your Petitioner."

PAR Number 11283302

State: North Carolina Year: 1833
Location: Cumberland Location Type: County

Abstract: Joseph Hostler, a barber in Fayetteville belonging to the estate of David Smith, reports that Smith allowed him "to purchase his own freedom" and that he has "paid to the said Smith & his Executrix ... the full sum of Five hundred Dollars, the sum required of him"; he also states that he has paid $96 "per year for about Four years and a half." The petitioner therefore "prays that he may be emancipated and admitted to the privileges of free men of Colour in this state."

PAR Number 11284801

State: North Carolina Year: 1848
Location: Franklin Location Type: County

Abstract: Amey Moore and "sundry other citizens of the county of Franklin" ask that David Moore, "a man of colour," be emancipated. They report that Amey sold the slave to Alexander McKnight for "the sum of one thousand dollars paid by the said Alexander McKinley, but which was in fact paid by the said David Moore with a view to the purchase of freedom." Having saved the life of the said Amey, the petitioners are "fully persuaded that David Moore is all respects a proper object for the favorable consideration of your honorable body.” They therefore pray "you to confer on him (one of the highest gifts you have to bestow) his freedom."

PAR Number 11379001

State: South Carolina Year: 1790
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: John Champneys recounts that his wife, "dangerously ill," purchased a mulatto slave, in 1785, "the property of her brother Alexander Harvey"; the said slave had been nursing his said wife and "was taken away from her bedside and threatened to be extremely ill used" by the person who had designs on purchasing her. Champneys explains that the said slave "being in tears and earnestly intreating him to be the Purchaser ... obliged him to be the highest bidder." The petitioner had hoped that the slave's status as "House Servant" would spare her from being taken up by "the Confiscation Law." Champneys prays that "the hardship of the Case may be taken into consideration," that he may be permitted to keep said slave, and that he "may be permitted to pay off the Bond in Indents or her full value in money with Interest from the day of Sale."

PAR Number 11379005

State: South Carolina Year: 1790
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: John Champneys recounts that his wife, "dangerously ill," purchased a mulatto slave, in 1785, "the property of her brother Alexander Harvey"; the said slave had been nursing his said wife and "was taken away from her bedside and threatened to be extremely ill used" by the person who had designs on purchasing her. Champneys explains that the said slave "being in tears and earnestly intreating him to be the Purchaser ... obliged him to be the highest bidder." The petitioner had hoped that the slave's status as "House Servant" would spare her from being taken up by "the Confiscation Law." Champneys prays that "the hardship of the Case may be taken into consideration," that he may be permitted to keep said slave, and that he "may be permitted to pay off the Bond in Indents or her full value in money with Interest from the day of Sale."

PAR Number 11379006

State: South Carolina Year: 1790

Abstract: William Ancrum seeks relief from a fine amounting to £1,495, "the one half of which to be paid in special Indents and the other half in the paper medium." Ancrum recounts that, in July 1782, "Thirty one Negroes late the property of your Memorialist were by order of Gov. Mathewes taken and sold at Camden for Specie for the use of the State amounting to Seven hundred and forty six Guineas." He further states that, when a House resolution in 1788 permitted discounts of "audited demands against the State," he sought to settle his amercement, but the state refused. Ancrum argues that the 1788 resolution applies only to those who do not have "audited demands against the State" and therefore asks for relief. He also laments that he "is unhappily subject to the payment of a large British debt."

PAR Number 11379009

State: South Carolina Year: 1790

Abstract: William Ancrum seeks relief from a fine amounting to £1,495, "the one half of which to be paid in special Indents and the other half in the paper medium." Ancrum recounts that, in July 1782, "Thirty one Negroes late the property of your Memorialist were by order of Gov. Mathewes taken and sold at Camden for Specie for the use of the State amounting to Seven hundred and forty six Guineas." He further states that, when a House resolution in 1788 permitted discounts of "audited demands against the State," he sought to settle his amercement, but the state refused. Ancrum argues that the 1788 resolution applies only to those who do not have "audited demands against the State" and therefore asks for relief. He also laments that he "is unhappily subject to the payment of a large British debt."

PAR Number 11379104

State: South Carolina Year: 1791
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Dr. James Clitherall seeks relief from three long overdue accounts. In 1782, the state sold Clitherall's slaves for specie at "very inferior" prices. The specie was paid to the state before the delivery of the slaves. The account was audited, delivered to the Board of Commissioners on Accounts, sent to the auditor, and reported to the treasury. Yet, the "same hath in no wise been satisfied, nor hath your Memorialist been allowed to discount it, as so much of the Specie part of his Amercicement." The second overdue account, arising from the sale of slaves by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates in 1783, brought Clitherall bonds payable in specie on a credit of three and six months. The bonds remain in the treasury unpaid. Moreover, the bond signed by John Cox and another man, Clitherall states, is "totally bad." Despite these just claims, Clitherall is "obliged to pay part of his amercement in Specie, and the remainder in general and Special Indents to the Attorney General, without being allowed any discount whatever." The third account derives from articles confiscated at Clitherall's plantation in 1782 by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates. Clitherall asks for payment in specie, including interest, for the first account; a general indent, with interest, for the second account; and "other relief" for the third account.

PAR Number 11379105

State: South Carolina Year: 1791
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Dr. James Clitherall seeks relief from three long overdue accounts. In 1782, the state sold Clitherall's slaves for specie at "very inferior" prices. The specie was paid to the state before the delivery of the slaves. The account was audited, delivered to the Board of Commissioners on Accounts, sent to the auditor, and reported to the treasury. Yet, the "same hath in no wise been satisfied, nor hath your Memorialist been allowed to discount it, as so much of the Specie part of his Amercicement." The second overdue account, arising from the sale of slaves by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates in 1783, brought Clitherall bonds payable in specie on a credit of three and six months. The bonds remain in the treasury unpaid. Moreover, the bond signed by John Cox and another man, Clitherall states, is "totally bad." Despite these just claims, Clitherall is "obliged to pay part of his amercement in Specie, and the remainder in general and Special Indents to the Attorney General, without being allowed any discount whatever." The third account derives from articles confiscated at Clitherall's plantation in 1782 by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates. Clitherall asks for payment in specie, including interest, for the first account; a general indent, with interest, for the second account; and "other relief" for the third account.

PAR Number 11379107

State: South Carolina Year: 1791

Abstract: Simon Tufts, "formerly an officer in the Service of the State," recounts that he purchased in 1786 an "infirm old negro wench formerly the Property of one Malcolm Brown" from the commissioners of confiscated estates, for which he signed a note for £450 sterling plus interest. Tufts asserts that he made said purchase with the assurance that he would be given a position in "Public Employment with a moderate salary." Although appointed supervisor of public buildings on Sullivans Island at a salary of fifty pounds sterling a year, Tufts reveals that he was discharged "from his Trust" shortly thereafter. The petitioner laments that Brown's estate "has been lately restored to him" and that he "holds your Petitioners Bond which with the Increase of Interest amounts at this day to the enormous Sum of Six hundred and ten Pounds sterling." Unable to pay his note, Tufts seeks relief on the grounds that the "Property at no time [was] worth a twentieth Part thereof."

PAR Number 11379211

State: South Carolina Year: 1792
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Dr. James Clitherall seeks relief from three long overdue accounts. In 1782, the state sold Clitherall's slaves for specie at "very inferior" prices. The specie was paid to the state before the delivery of the slaves. The account was audited, delivered to the Board of Commissioners on Accounts, sent to the auditor, and reported to the treasury. Yet, the "same hath in no wise been satisfied, nor hath your Memorialist been allowed to discount it, as so much of the Specie part of his Amercicement." The second overdue account, arising from the sale of slaves by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates in 1783, brought Clitherall bonds payable in specie on a credit of three and six months. The bonds remain in the treasury unpaid. Moreover, the bond signed by John Cox and another man, Clitherall states, is "totally bad." Despite these just claims, Clitherall is "obliged to pay part of his amercement in Specie, and the remainder in general and Special Indents to the Attorney General, without being allowed any discount whatever." The third account derives from articles confiscated at Clitherall's plantation in 1782 by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates. Clitherall asks for payment in specie, including interest, for the first account; a general indent, with interest, for the second account; and "other relief" for the third account.

PAR Number 11379301

State: South Carolina Year: 1793
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Susanna St. John of St. James Parish seeks compensation for the slave Titus. She recounts that her husband, Dr. Stephen St. John, purchased Titus in 1785, “for which he gave his Bond for ₤67 ... with Interest.” Susanna laments, however, that Stephen was "killed by runaway Negroes in April last" and that the said Titus "has since, been convicted of being accessory to his Death, and executed agreeable to Sentence passed the 1st of May." St. John further reveals that Titus was valued at "the Sum of Seventy Pounds" and that a certificate has been delivered to the State Treasurer directing that said sum be paid. The petitioner therefore prays "the valuation of the said Negro may be received by the Treasurer as a payment of the Bond and Interest."

PAR Number 11379310

State: South Carolina Year: 1793
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Susanna St. John of St. James Parish seeks compensation for the slave Titus. She recounts that her husband, Dr. Stephen St. John, purchased Titus in 1785, “for which he gave his Bond for ₤67 ... with Interest.” Susanna laments, however, that Stephen was "killed by runaway Negroes in April last" and that the said Titus "has since, been convicted of being accessory to his Death, and executed agreeable to Sentence passed the 1st of May." St. John further reveals that Titus was valued at "the Sum of Seventy Pounds" and that a certificate has been delivered to the State Treasurer directing that said sum be paid. The petitioner therefore prays "the valuation of the said Negro may be received by the Treasurer as a payment of the Bond and Interest."

PAR Number 11379312

State: South Carolina Year: 1793
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Dr. James Clitherall seeks relief from three long overdue accounts. In 1782, the state sold Clitherall's slaves for specie at "very inferior" prices. The specie was paid to the state before the delivery of the slaves. The account was audited, delivered to the Board of Commissioners on Accounts, sent to the auditor, and reported to the treasury. Yet, the "same hath in no wise been satisfied, nor hath your Memorialist been allowed to discount it, as so much of the Specie part of his Amercicement." The second overdue account, arising from the sale of slaves by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates in 1783, brought Clitherall bonds payable in specie on a credit of three and six months. The bonds remain in the treasury unpaid. Moreover, the bond signed by John Cox and another man, Clitherall states, is "totally bad." Despite these just claims, Clitherall is "obliged to pay part of his amercement in Specie, and the remainder in general and Special Indents to the Attorney General, without being allowed any discount whatever." The third account derives from articles confiscated at Clitherall's plantation in 1782 by the Commissioners of Forfeited Estates. Clitherall asks for payment in specie, including interest, for the first account; a general indent, with interest, for the second account; and "other relief" for the third account.

PAR Number 11379702

State: South Carolina Year: 1797
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: Susanna St. John of St. James Parish seeks compensation for the slave Titus. She recounts that her husband, Dr. Stephen St. John, purchased Titus in 1785 and “gave his Bond for ₤67.” Susanna further states that "the said Negro Titus was found Guilty of being accessory (or principal) to the Death of your Petitioners Husband, and was Executed accordingly." Revealing that Titus was valued at £70 Sterling, the petitioner "(as the Estate of the Deceased is insolvent) prays a remission of the Debt."

PAR Number 11379802

State: South Carolina Year: 1798
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: James Delaire states that his slave, Paul, alias Figaro, was convicted of sedition and sentenced to be transported from the United States to the Dutch Colony of Surinam and sold. Other slaves involved in the plot were hanged, but Paul testified against them and his life was spared. Paul was turned over to Duncan Hill, owner of the brig Aurora, for transport to Surinam. Owing to the "Intense cold the said Figaro had suffered in the Work House at Charleston & the strong pressure of the Irons on his legs very few days after the Sailing of the Aurora he was taken with a swelling about the ankles which turn'd into a sore & that a mortification of the flesh ensuing his toes rotted & one of his feet drop'd of[f] entirely." As a result, Paul sold for only about $20 though he was worth $350. Delaire seeks compensation.

PAR Number 11379803

State: South Carolina Year: 1798
Location: Charleston Location Type: District/Parish

Abstract: James Delaire states that his slave, Paul, alias Figaro, was convicted of sedition and sentenced to be transported from the United States to the Dutch Colony of Surinam and sold. Other slaves involved in the plot were hanged, but Paul testified against them and his life was spared. Paul was turned over to Duncan Hill, owner of the brig Aurora, for transport to Surinam. Owing to the "Intense cold the said Figaro had suffered in the Work House at Charleston & the strong pressure of the Irons on his legs very few days after the Sailing of the Aurora he was taken with a swelling about the ankles which turn'd into a sore & that a mortification of the flesh ensuing his toes rotted & one of his feet drop'd of[f] entirely." As a result, Paul sold for only about $20 though he was worth $350. Delaire seeks compensation.

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