Category Archives: Continuing Story

Virginia Slaves of the James Family – Documented

Ship’s cargo – Captured people shipped to America for sale as enslaved chattel

The immigrant of our James family is John James who arrived in America in 1650. The documented records of the Virginia slaves of our James family begins with John’s son, Thomas James, and his wife Sarah E. Mason. Family records throughout the 18th century provide ample evidence of the growing wealth accumulated by the James families and their descendants. Wealth grew in the value of the enslaved people the James families owned and by the material results those enslaved people produced for the James. Family lore offers evidence that the James families owned many more additional field slaves than the 99 slaves and their increase named and enumerated below.

“JOHN JAMES came to Virginia in 1650 and in 1670 patented land in Stafford County where he died ante 1690; his widow ELIZABETH married secondly THOMAS NORMAN.

“THOMAS JAMES, son and heir of JOHN JAMES, lived on Potomic Creek. He patented land there in 1699 about which time he married SARAH, widow of ANDREW BARBEE. THOMAS JAMES died testate circa 1727 leaving GEORGE JAMES (circa 1702-1753) his eldest son and heir-at-law.

“By inheritance, purchase , and marriage GEORGE JAMES became a wealthy land holder in Stafford, Prince William and Spotsylvania counties; he died testate in Fredericksburg in 1753. He married MARY WHEELER, only child of JOHN WHEELER, Gentleman, (1684-1746) a vestryman in Overwharton Parish and had ten children, viz: (1) THOMAS (circa 1729-1776) of Fauquier County, married MARY BRUCE; (2) GEORGE (circa 1730-1755); JOHN (circa 1732-circa 1794) married in 1763 ANNE STROTHER; (4) ESTHER, born circa 1734, married HENRY FIELD of Culpeper County; (5) MARY (1736-1822) married first in 1754 ANTHONY STROTHER, Gentleman, (1710-1765) and secondly in 1771 Colonel HENRY SMITH; (6) DIANA born circa 1740; (7) MARGARET (1742-1748); JOSEPH born 1746; (9) DANIEL born 1748, married on April 5, 1773 in Orange County, LUCY DAVIS; and (10) HENRY JAMES, born circa 1750, and his brother JOSEPH were living in Fauquier County, 1774.”

– George Harrison Sanford King

Source: “The Register of Overwharton Parish, Stafford Co VA, 1723-1758” p.59 by George Harrison Sanford King; Southern Historical Press Inc, 1961, p.55


The Enslaved of Thomas James 1675-1726 & Sarah E. Mason, widow of Andrew Barbee

  • 3 negros (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • 2 negros
  • Toby
  • Jenny

Source-1: Westmoreland County, Virginia Wills Abstracts
Will of Charles Mothershead, 12 April 1756: probate 25 May 1756:

“…to My Sister; Cousins Elizabeth and THOMAS JAMES 3 negros; sister MARY WILKERSON; Cousin CHARLES WILKERSON; brother-in-law THOMAS JAMES all estate save 3 negros…”

Source-2: The Register of Overwharton Parish, King, p. 162

“A list of Tobacco Tenders from the South Side of Potomack (Creek) to ye Lower End of Overwharton Parish…
THOMAS JAMES
JOHN JAMES (between 10 and 16 years of age)
JOSEPH JAMES (between 10 and 16 years of age)
2 Negroes
23,882 Tobacco Plants”

Source-3: Deed Abstracts of King George County, Virginia, 1821-1735, Sparacio. Also, Stafford County Deed Book J: pp.265-267

June 7, 1726
“THOMAS JAMES of Overwharton Parish, Stafford County in consideration of natural affection but more especially for 100 pounds Sterling money grant unto my son GEORGE JAMES of Parish of Saint Georges and County of Spotsylvania and the issue of his body lawfully begotten my now dwelling plantation in Stafford County & 300 acres of land thereon adjoining together with two Negro slaves named TOBEY and JENNY…to be to him immediately after my decease and for default of such issue in the said GEORGE JAMES the said lands to pass to my son JOHN JAMES and their heirs of his body…and for default of such heirs the same to my son JOSEPH JAMES and the heirs…under the limitation aforesaid…”
Witnessed: JOHN HOOE, FRENCH MASON, MOSLEY BATTALEY
Signed: THOMAS JAMES
Acknowledged in Court in Stafford County June 8, 1726


The Enslaved of George James Sr. 1702-1754 & Mary Wheeler

  • Will Strike (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Pegg + increase (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Charles, a negro boy
  • Pegg + increase
  • Tom (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Dick  (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • a slave born or baptized in 1729

Source-1: Will of John Wheeler of Overwharton Parish, Stafford County; Will Abstracts of Stafford County, Virginia, 1729-1748. Sparacio. Also, Stafford County Will Book M, pp.480-481

Executed: September 9, 1743
Entered into Probate: August 12, 1746

“Item: I give unto GEORGE JAMES & MARY his wife three Negroe to say WILL STRIKE and PEGG the meaning of this bequest and my desire is that the said Negro PEGG be and remain in the estate of my said wife DIANA and after her decease I give the said Negro PEGG and her increase to my daughter MARY JAMES aforesaid during her natural life after whose death I give the said negro and her increase to ESTHER JAMES daughter of said GEORGE JAMES and MARY to her and her heirs.

“Item: I give unto ESTHER JAMES of GEORGE and MARY JAMES, a negro boy called CHARLES and a negro woman called PEGG and her increase…

Item: It is my will that my two negroes named TOM and DICK after the decease of my wife DIANA WHEELER be sold at publick auction and the money arising by such sale to be equally divided between GEORGE JAMES THE YOUNGER and his sister ESTHER JAMES…and heirs.”

Source-2: Register of Overwharton Parish, p.140, Negro Slave Owners in Overwharton Parish

GEORGE JAMES had a slave born or baptized in 1749. The recording of the slave birth was required so slave owners could be taxed when the slaves came to the proper age to be tithables.


The Enslaved of Capt. John James 1708-1778 & Dinah Allen

  • Tom, a boy (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Moses, a boy (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Harry
  • Jenny, plus her increase
  • Moll
  • Peter, a boy
  • Ben, a boy
  • Katie, daughter of Moll
  • Nan
  • Lucy
  • Nan, the increase of
  • Peter
  • Ben
  • Joe
  • Judy

Source-1. Will of John James: Abstracts of Wills, Administrations, and Marriages of Fauquier County, Virginia, 1759-1800. J. Estelle Stewart King. Also, Fauquier County Will Book 1: pp.332-334

Executed: November 6, 1777
Entered for Probate: May 25, 1778

“BENJAMIN…after his mother’s decease the plantation whereon I now live and as much land adjoining as will make a Tract of 500 acres bounded as follows: Beginning at the Corner of JOHN KERR’s & my Land thence up the Spring Branch to the Spring, thence from a marked White Oak South six degrees east to the Waggon Road which leads from the Church to BRERETON JONES’s the sd 500 acres to lye on both side of sd. road and joining the land of JOHN CRUMP, COLO. WILLIAM EUSTACE, & GEORGE CRUMP, also one Negroe boy named TOM – one feather bed and furniture – one cow and calf and two Ewes and Lambs – in case of BENJAMIN’s death the lands to go to JOHN.

” JOHN…all my land lying on the South westermost side of the Waggon Road and TULLOS and path containing by estomation 500 acres – Negroe boy named MOSES, one feather bed and furniture, one cow and calf and two Ewes and Lambs – If son JOHN should die without lawful issue the land to be equally divided between my son THOMAS JAMES, and my daughters SARAH HITT, ANN TULLOS, HANNAH HUMES, ELIZABETH BRADFORD, MARY CONWAY, DINAH THOMPSON & SUSANNAH JAMES

” …DINAH JAMES (WIFE)…all the residue of my estate both real and personal during her life and after her decease all the land not already bequeathed to my Children I leave to be equally divided among my daughters SARAH HITT, ANN TULLOS, HANNAH HUMES, ELIZ’S BRADFORD, MARY CONWAY, DINAH THOMPSON, & SUSANNAH JAMES. All the slaves and their increase lent to his children were to be returned after the decease of his wife and divided with the rest of his Estate.

Source-2. Dinah Allen’s Inheritance: Will of William Allen, father of Dinah Allen-James: Will Abstracts of Stafford County, Virginia, 1729-1748. Sparacio. Also, Stafford County Will Book M: pp.309-311

Executed August 16, 1738
Presented for Probate: May 12, 1741

“Item: I give unto my daughter DINAH JAMES all my right and title of her part of that land lying upon Elk Run and in Prince William County it being divided and laid off to my four daughters. Also I give to my daughter DINAH Negroe HARRY to be her and heirs as also I give to my daughter DINAH a negro named JENNY with all her increase during her life and after her decease I give JENNY and her increase to be equally divided amongst the children which she shall have by JOHN JAMES to them and heirs.”

Other slaves of William Allen also dispersed:
“Item: I give unto my daughter SARAH WALLER Negroe MOLL and all her future increase to her and her heirs. Likewise I give unto my grandson JOHN WALLER, son of WILLIAM WALLER, one negro boy named BEN, he being one of the Negroe MOLLS children to him and his heirs. Also, I give to my grandson WILLIAM WALLER, son of WILLIAM WALLER, one negro boy named PETER being one of MOLLS children to him and his heirs. As also I give unto my granddaughter ANNE WALLER, daughter of WILLIAM WALLER, one negroe girl named KATIE being one of MOLLS children to her and heirs.

“Item: I give to my daughter ELIZABETH WALLER Negroe NAN and her increase to her and heirs, as also I give unto my daughter ELIZABETH WALLER a negro girl named LUCY during her life, only my desire is that the increase of negro LUCY may belong to my grandson WILLIAM WALLER, son of GEORGE and ELIZABETH WALLER, aforesaid and after his mother’s decease I give the negro LUCY with all her increase to him and heir.

“Item: I give unto my daughter MARGARET all my right and title of her part of that land lying upon Elk Run in Prince William County already in her possession which I formerly made over by deed of gift and recorded in Prince William County Court it being divided and laid off to my four daughters by JOHN SAVAGE Surveyor of Stafford County to her and heirs as also I give to my daughter MARGARET a negro man named GEORGE already in her possession and a Negroe girl named NAN after my wife decease to her and heirs but my desire is that the increase of negroe NAN may be equally divided between my daughter MARGARET’s children and heirs as she lives and after her decease to them and their heirs forever.

“Item: I give unto my daughter HANNAH WITHERS a negroe woman named KATE and her Negro BEN already in her possession to her and heirs, likewise I give to my grandson JAMES WITHERS a negroe child named SUE being one of KATE’s children with her increase to him and heirs, after my wife’s decease, and the Negroe KATE with all her future increase to my daughter HANNAH WITHERS aforesaid and her heirs, likewise I give unto my daughter HANNAH one chest lock and key and one iron pot, also one pewter dish she having her choice.

“Item: I give unto my dear and loving wife and my son WILLIAM ALLEN the plantation whereon I now live and all the land belonging to it together with the hope neck and quarter as also all my title and interest of that land. I formerly leased to JOHN SUMACK in Prince William County upon Elk Run during my wife’s life and her decease I give it all to my son WILLIAM ALLEN and heir. Likewise I give to my wife three negroes named PETER, BEN and JOE during her life and after her decease to my son WILLIAM ALLEN and his heirs. Likewise I give to my son WILLIAM one Negroe girls named JUDEY with all her increase to him and heirs and all the rest of personal estate after my debts and legacies are paid to be equally divided between my dear and loving wife and my son WILLIAM only one feather bed with furniture out of his Mother part after his mother’s decease, the which bed with furniture I give to my daughter HANNAH WITHERS and her heirs, she having her choice out of her mother’s part, and likewise a young mare which runs at the marsh by my son JOHN ALLENs which mare I gave to my Grandson JOHN ALLEN and his heirs, and for the rest of my personal estate of what kind so ever to be equally divided between my loving wife during her life and my son WILLIAM and after my wife’s decease I give it all to my son WILLIAM ALLEN and heirs. I make my wife and my son WILLIAM ALLEN my full and whole executors of this my last will.


The Enslaved of Sarah James 1739-abt. 1822, daughter of Capt. John James & Dinah Allen, & Peter Hitt Jr. 1726-1809

  • Pender
  • Sarah, daughter of Pender
  • Brooks, daughter of Pender
  • Harry
  • George
  • Bobb
  • Filler
  • Negroes now in the possession of the widow Hitt
  • Cato, a boy

Source: Recorded in Fauquier County, Virginia on 28 May 1810. Fauquier County, Virginia Will Book 5, p.153

“Then I give and bequeath to my beloved wife, SARAH HITT, during her natural life for her support all the land I possess in the County of Fauquier except at least of two hundred acres heretofore given to my son, REUBEN HITT, but not yet conveyed; also one negro woman named PENDER and her daughters, SARAH and BROOKS; also HARRY, BILL, GEORGE, and BOBB; also four horses, choice of my stock and my wagon and gear and all the plantation vessels; all the stock of horned cattle that may be on my estate at my death, also twenty sheep, choice of my flock, also twenty head of hogs, choice of my stock; and all my household and kitchen furniture for and during her natural live only.

“Then I give to my son, NIMROD HITT, after the death of his mother, also one bed and furniture, one cow and calf, two ewes and lambs, one sow and pigs, which is all property to NIMROD who shall will to whom he pleases if he lives longer than his mother, but should he decease before his mother, in that case it is my will that the aforesaid property willed to him be equally divided among my other children or their representatives.

“Then I give and bequeath to the heirs of PETER HITT JR, lawfully begotten of his body, the land I bought of REUBEN MARTIN and one negro girl named FILLER and her increases forever, which said property I estimate at one hundred and twenty pounds, the negroes now in possession of the widow of PETER HITT, deceased.

“Then I give and bequeath to my son, REUBEN HITT, and his heirs the lease of two hundred acres of land he formerly lived on and which is heretofore excepted and one negro boy named CATO now in possession of my son REUBEN HITT, which said property in addition to what I have formerly given and moneys paid for him, I estimate at one hundred and twenty pounds.”

Signed with my hand and dated this the 26th of April 1808.
/ S / PETER HITT
Witnesses: ARTHUR GLADSTONE, MARY SHAW

Capt. John James and Dinah Allen were well acquainted with President George Washington. As plantation neighbors and personal friends, the James provisioned Washington’s revolutionary army with specie, supplies, and tobacco crops to underwrite the war. A reasonable assumption suggests that, as like thinkers and actors in the era, the James also exercised the same management policies with their enslaved as Gen. Washington practiced with his enslaved people.


The Enslaved of Benjamin James Sr. 1746-1803 & Elizabeth Paar

  • Anthony
  • Winny
  • David
  • George
  • Mary
  • Agga
  • Adam
  • Lewis
  • Plus increase
  • Tom, child of Mary
  • Polly, child of Mary
  • Tom, a man, now in Indian country (See his emancipation and family under notes for Thomas James, below.)
  • Jack, a young Negro
  • Lucinda, a young Negro
  • Lucy, a young Negro
  • Judy, a young Negro
  • Plus their increase

Source: Will of Benjamin James: Abstracts of Wills, Administrations, & Marriages of Fauquier County Virginia 1759-1800 by J. Estelle Stewart King, Baltimore Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc. 1980. Also, Will Book #3, Fauquier County, Virginia

Will of Benjamin James 1746-1803
27 Sept. 1803, Proved 23 Jan. 1804
Wife: Elizabeth James, Sons: Benjamin, Thomas, John
Exrs.: wife, son Benjamin, and cousin Joseph James.

“Item it is my will and desire that my loving wife Elizabeth shall possess and enjoy the tract of land I now live on during her life and at her decease to be equally divided among the children she has by me also I give and bequeath to my wife the negroes hereafter mentioned Anthony, Winny, David, George, Mary, Agga, Adam and Lewis to possess the said negroes during her life and after her decease to be equally divided among the children she has by me but the increase of the said negroes she may dispose of as she may think proper.

“Item I give and bequeath to my son Benjamin two young negroes one by the name of Tom and the other by the name of Polly children of Mary which he is not to possess till the first day of October 1805. I give the said negroes to him and his heirs forever. Also I give my son Benjamin one negroe man by the name of Tom which is now in the Indian Country. Also one horse bridle and saddle which said horse he has now in possession but not to be at his disposal till he comes of age which will be the first day of October 1805. Also I give my son Benjamin all that tract of land I purchased of John and William Scott which said tract is situate and lying on the Tombigba River a little below the falls of said river, I give the said tract of land to him and his heirs forever. Also I give my son Benjamin all that tract of land situate and lying on the Big Black Creek a branch of the Massesipa River containing 600 acres. I give it to him and his heirs forever.

“Item I give and bequeath to my son Thomas two young negroes one named Jack the other Lucindia but it is my will that he is not to possess them until he comes of age.

“Item I give and bequeath to my son John two young negroes one by the name of Lucy the other Judy but not to possess them until he comes of age. It is my will that my sons Thomas and John shall also possess the increase of the said negroes when they come of age I give them to them and their heirs forever…

“In witness where I set my hand and seal this 27th day of September, 1803”
Benjamin James
Peter Conway
George Settle

Proved January 23, 1804.


The Enslaved of Thomas James 1745-1825

As noted above in the will of Benjamin James 1746-1803, at the mouth of the Big Black River, on Bayou Pierre (branch of James Creek), Thomas James had three land grants, starting in 1775. Thomas James is in Choctaw-Chickasaw Territory, Mississippi in 1804 to secure this land. Three sons of Thomas James later operated the Forks of the Road slave market in Natchez.

  • Tom, inherited by and emancipated by Benjamin James “of the Choctaw Nation”
  • Sally, his wife, purchased by Tom from Adam James
  • Lucy, child of Tom and Sally
  • Mary, child of Tom and Sally
  • Ailsey, child of Tom and Sally
  • George, child of Tom and Sally
  • Jack, son of Tom and Sally, being about 16 years

Source – Slave sales involving the above slave Tom: Greene County, Alabama – Deed Record Book A: pp.234-235

Slave Sale – December 17, 1818

Adam JAMES of the Choctaw Nation for $950.00 paid by “Tom, a free man of colour late the property of my brother Benjamin JAMES and by him emancipated”, sells Tom “his wife Sally, a slave inherited by me from my father Benjamin JAMES, Sr, also Lucy, Mary, Ailsey and George, children of the said negro woman Sally by the said Tom, slaves”

Self-Purchase – November 4, 1819

Benjamin JAMES of the Choctaw Nation for $400.00, paid by Tom, a negro man inherited by me from my late father Benjamin JAMES, formerly a resident of this nation, do grant unto the said Tom, aged about 45 yrs, his free liberty

Slave Sale – January 1, 1824

Adam JAMES, citizen of the Choctaw Nation, for $800.00 cash sells unto “a Black man commonly called Free Tom, a negro boy named Jack, a son of the said Tom and Sally his wife, being about 16 yrs. Old


The Enslaved of John Thomas James 1746-1801 & Elizabeth “Betsy” Wright

  • Troy
  • Nancy
  • George
  • Lydia
  • Robin
  • Jamina
  • Edward
  • Elijah
  • Joshua
  • Sedwick
  • James
  • Judah, and her children
  • Winney

Source-1: Fauquier County, Will Book 3, p. 381

September 8, 1801

 Proved April 26, 1802

“Item I give and bequeath to my daughter Mary two negroes (to wit) Troy and Nancy daughter to Jane to her and her heirs forever,

“Item I give and bequeath to my daughter Margaret two negroes namely George and Lydia to her and her heirs forever

“Item I give and bequeath to my son Aldridge two negroes namely Robin and Jamina to him and his heirs forever

“Item I give and bequeath to my son David two negroes namely Edward and Elijah to him and his heirs forever…

“In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this eighth day of September, Eighteen hundred and one.”
signed sealed and acknowledged in presence of us.
John James LS

Peter Conway
Bretain Lewis
Benjamin Bronaugh
John Shumate Sr.

At a court held for Fauquier County the 26th day of April, 1802. This Will was proved by the oath of Peter Conway as witness thereto and ordered to be certified and on the motion of James Wright one of the executors therein named who made oath and together with Thomas Keith his security entered into and acknowledged bond in the penalty of ten thousand dollars conditioned as the law directs certificate is granted him for obtaining a probate thereof in due form. And at a court held for the said County the 24th day of May, 1802 the same was further provided by the oaths of Benjamin Bronaugh and Britain Lewis two other witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.

Source-2, Probate: The Washington Ancestry and Records of The McClain, Johnson, and Forty Other Colonial American Families.
Prepared for EDWARD LEE McCLAIN by Charles Archer Hoppin
IN THREE VOLUMES. Greenfield, Ohio: Privately Printed 1932. Volume I, p. 423 references the wife of John James being Elizabeth Wright, daughter of James Wright.

Source-3, Will of Elizabeth Wright-James: Fauquier County Will Book 3, p. 381; proved April 26, 1802, Fauquier County Will Book 13, p. 394

Will of Elizabeth Wright-James

“Item I give to my daughter Margaret Kelly’s children my Negroes Joshua, Sedwick, James, Judah and her children, also the tract of land that belonged to my grandfather upon which I live but it is my will and testament that my son Aldridge James retain possession of the said tract of land for five years after my death free of rent or charge enjoining on him to use it as he would his own.

“Item I give to my granddaughter Delia James my Negro girl Winney…

“In testimony of which I have hereunto set my hand and seal this day and date above mentioned.”
Elizabeth James (seal)
Testo
Gorg W. Sinclair
M. A. Chilton
Enos Hord

At the court held for Fauquier County on the 27th day of October, 1834. This last will and testament of Elizabeth James was proved by the oaths of Gorg W. Sinclair, M. A. Chilton and Enos Hord subscribing witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.
Test. A. J. Marshall


Culpeper and Fauquier Counties were the primary locations of plantations of the James family in Colonial Virginia.

The Enslaved of Joseph James, the Elder 1712-1782 & Mary Field

  • Dick
  • Judey
  • Hannah
  • Rachel
  • Milly
  • James
  • Fanny
  • Keen
  • Fillis
  • Jenny
  • Sarah
  • Harry
  • John
  • Phyllis (probably Fillis above)
  • Cain (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Nancy (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Two negroes “such as he will make choice of my Estate”
  • Rachel, and her increase “two Negroes I did let my son Henry James” (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Sarah, and her increase “two Negroes I did let my son Henry James” (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Abel (previously noted in Classic SL)
  • Hanner (previously noted in Classic SL)

Source-1, Mortgage Indenture: Joseph James indenture to Henry Field, Sr. 1767 Culpeper County, Virginia, Deed Book E, pp.230-231

“This Indenture made the tenth day of March in the Year of our Lord One Thousand, seven hundred & sixty seven Between Joseph James of the St. Mark Parish in the county of Culpeper in the Colony of Virginia, Planter of the one Part and Capt. Henry Field of the Parish, County and Colony aforesaid, Gent of the other part, witnesseth That the said Joseph James for divers good causes and considerations him thereunto Moving, but more Especially for and in consideration of the said Henry Field Paying off and discharging two Judgments agst. me to the amount of one hundred & thirty eight pounds three shillings and two pence current money of Virginia and Three hundred & forty one pounds of nett Tobacco (Viz) Seventy five Pounds three shillings & eleven pence and one hundred and sixty three pounds of tobacco together with the sherifs Fee for serving the Execution at five H cent[?] Three Pounds fifteen shillings & three pence of the like money and Eight Pounds of Tobacco to satisfy Anthony McKettrick’s judgment, as also a Judgment Confest by the said Joseph James to John Pollard for Fifty Nine Pounds of like Money and one hundred & seventy Pounds of Tobacco. Now know ye that for the Considerations aforesaid, I the said Joseph James Do assign and make Over and by these Presents do freely fully and Absolutely assign and make over unto the said Henry Field his heirs and assigns from this day the labors Benefit and profit of eleven negroes (Viz) Dick, Judey, Hannah, Rachel, Milly, James, Fanny, Keen, Fillis, Jenny, and Sarah together with seven feather Beds with their furniture, Twenty head of Cattle, one Oval Table and one Desk & Corner Cubbard, six pewter Dishes and four Dozen of plates, Twenty head of Sheep, one Waggon and four Waggon Horses with all their Harness, and one Riding Horse, four breeding Mares & three Yearling Colts, all which the benefit of the Labours of the above mentioned Eleven Negroes and all and Singular the Goods & Chattels above mentioned with all their benefit and profit. I the said Joseph James do for myself, my heirs Executors & Admin’s or Assigns Covenant, Promise and agree to and with the said Henry Field aforesaid his Heirs and assigns forever that the said Henry Field his Heirs and assigns shall and May from Time to Time and at all Times forever hereafter Have, hold, make use of and Enjoy all the Benefit and Profit of the above mentioned Negroes together with all and singular the Goods and Chattels above mentioned in as full & ample a manner as if they were Actually now in his Possession, clear and clearly Acquitted of and from all manner and former Gifts, Grants, Bargains, Sales, Mortgages, Wills, Judgments, Executions, or Encumbrances Whatsoever. Furthermore I the said Joseph James for myself, my heirs, Executors and Administrators Do Covenant and Promise at and upon the reasonable Request and at the proper Cost & Charges in the law of the said Henry Field his Heirs, and to make do, Perform and Execute any further or other Lawful and reasonable Act or Acts, thing or things, Device or Devices in the Law needful and requisite for the more perfect Apurance Selling and the sure making over to him the said Field, his heirs and assigns as above mentioned. Provided nevertheless and it is the true intent & meaning of both the above mentioned Parties Joseph James and Henry Field in these Presents anything herein contained to the Contrary notwithstanding That if the above named Joseph James his heirs, Executors, Admor’s or Assigns do well and truly pay or Cause to be Paid to the above Mentioned Henry Field his heirs or Assigns the above mentioned sum of one hundred and thirty eight Pounds three shillings and two pence and Three hundred & forty one Pounds of Nett Tobacco with Lawful Interest on the same. Then this above written Deed or Obligation and every Clause and Article therein Contained shall be null, void & of none Effect or Else shall abide in full force and Virtue Sealed with my seal and dated the Day and Year first above Written.”
Joseph James (LS)

Signed Sealed and Delivered in the presence of us.
Benj. Roberts
Henry Field jun.

At a court held for the County of Culpeper on Thursday the 19th of March 1767. This Indenture of Mortgage from Joseph James to Capt. Henry Field, Gent. was acknowledged by the said Joseph [James] and ordered to be Recorded.
Teste
Roger Dixon, Clk

Source-2: Deed Books A-E, Culpeper County, Virginia. 1749-1769, as abstracted by John Frederick Dornan, 1975-1979

A: 137-139 12 Dec 1753 re a negro named HARRY which JOHN WYNALL had sold to Mr. JOSEPH JAMES etc; wit P.CLAYTON, DANIEL BROWN, proved 21 June 1754

Source-3, Will of Joseph James: Will Book C: pp. 8-9 of Culpeper County, Virginia

JOSEPH JAMES of Culpeper County, dated 31 December 1778, proved 21 April 1783

“In the name of God Amen:
“ I JOSEPH JAMES of Culpeper County being in perfect sense and memory knowing that all men must Depart this Life therefore I decree this my last will and testament making all other Wills void before made as to my soul do give it up unto the hands of MY Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and my body to be Decently buried by my beloved below mentioned. And my worldly goods to be distributed as followeth.

“Item: I do give unto my son JOSEPH JAMES two negroes already delivered, JAN and PHYLLIS to him and to his heirs forever with all other things he has received.

“Item: I do give unto my son GEORGE JAMES two negroes already delivered, CAIN and NANCY to him and to his heirs forever with all other things he has received.

“Item: I do give unto my son JOSEPH JAMES the Younger the Plantation where now I do live with three hundred acres of land to be sold after my executors also two negroes such as he will make choice of my Estate to him and unto his heirs forever, also a good feather bed and furniture and one cow and calf.

“Item: I do give unto my son DANIEL JAMES all the remainder part of the tract of land that I now live upon after taking out three hundred acres for his brother JOSEPH above mentioned to him and to his heirs forever also the two Negroes I did let my son HENRY JAMES, deceased have, RACHEL and SARAH with their increase forever…Other Negroes out of my Estate ABEL and HANNER to him and to his heirs forever, also a good feather bed and furniture, a cow and calf; also three beasts, one bay mare and one mare colt which was the property of son HENRY…

“I do appoint my loving wife MARY JAMES Executrix and JOSEPH STUARD and my son JOSEPH JAMES, JR. executors of this my last Will and Testament. Given from Under my hand and Seal this the 31st day of December 1778.”

JOSEPH /his mark/ JAMES

Sealed and Delivered before us
AMBROSE COLEMAN
TIMOTHY HOLDWAY
ANN /her mark/ HOLDWAY

Source-4, Inventory of Joseph James: Will Book C:12 of Culpeper County, Virginia

Not totaled, returned 19 May 1783 by AMBROSE COLEMAN, THOMAS WRIGHT, JAMES LONG


Gift of Enslaved from Henry and Esther Field to daughter Mary James and her children

Source-5, Deed of Gift: 1766 Culpeper County, VA., Deed Book E: pp. 210-211

“Know all men by these Presents that we Henry Field and Esther his Wife of Culpeper County and Saint Marks Parish hath ever since the Marriage of our Daughter Mary to Joseph James had Negro’s in her or their Possession as a lone or Gift of the Profits and Benefit of them to her with a faithfull promise that the said negroes and their Increase should be, her Childrens but never intended to give them to her and whereas the said Negores hath this Day Increased (with themselves) to the Amount or Number of Eleven namely Dick, Judy, Hannah, Rachell, James, Mill, Fan, Kein, Filles, Janey & Sarah and it appears to us that their is sum Reason at this Time to make it known how for our Daughter property —- in the Above Eleven Negroes and how they are to be Divided and given amongst her Children According to faithful promise by us made to her and her Husband that is to say We Continue the Lone and we give the Use Profits an Benefit of the Above Eleven Negroes and their future Increase to our Daughter Mary for her Support and Succour during her Natural Life or Marriage to another Man and after either her Death or Marriage to Another Man that then in either Case when Complete we fully & freely Give the above said Eleven Negroes and their future Increase Equally to be Divided amongst all her Children that then shall be Living by her present Husband Joseph James the said Eleven negroes and their future Increase when Divided each Child’s part or portion we give to them and their Heirs forever and whereas it may be that some of her Children then Living may not be of full age to Act for their selves it is our Devise that on Application made to the Court of Any of her Children that is of Age the Court to whom such Application is made I hereby Required and Impowered to Order three or more proper persons as the Said Court shall se fit to make such Division as Above said and make return of their Report to the Court and such Division, made by Virtue of such Court Order and Recorded shall be deemed taken & Granted for an equal Division and shall be definitive amongst our Grand Children that then shall be Living of our Daughter Mary by her present Husband Joseph James In Witness hereof we, have hereunto set our Hands & Seals this Nineteenth Day of November One Thousand Seven Hundred Sixty Six.”

Not before signed interlined in second line (Marriage)H.Field (L.S.)
in the eighteenth line (all)
Signed Sealed and Delivered in presence of Esther Field (L.S.)
Daniel Field
Anne Field

At a Court held for the County of Culpeper on Thursday the 20th Day of November 1766
This Deed of Gift from Henry Field and Esther his Wife to their Daughter Mary James & her Children was Acknowledged by the said Henry & Esther and Ordered to be Recorded
Teste
Roger Dixen Clk
WILL

“In the name of God, amen. I, MARY JAMES of Madison county of sound mind and disposing memory (for which I thank God) and calling to mind the uncertainty of human life, and being desireous to dispose of all such worldly Estate as it hath pleased God to help one with – I give and bequaeth the same in manner as following unto my granddaughter POLLY JAMES, daughter of my son DANIEL, one negro girl names MARY to her and her heirs forever –

“ITEM I give and bequeath unto my son DANIEL JAMES two negroes, TOBY and PHILLIS to him and his heirs forever.

“ITEM I give and bequeath to my daughter-in-law NANCY JAMES my riding horse.

“ITEM I give and bequeath unto my son DANIEL JAMES all the rest of my estate of what nature or heirs soever it may be, not herein particularly disposed of to him and his heirs forever. And lastly I do appoint my son DANIEL JAMES Executor of this my last will and testament. In Witness my hand and __?___ this 3 day of May 1798.”

(S) Mary James

Signed, sealed, delivered in the presence of
DAN FIELD JAMES
JUDITH FIELDS
JOHN ROBERTS

At a court held for Madison county the 21 day of January 1805.
This last will and testament of MARY JAMES deceased was presented into Court and proved by the oaths of DANIEL FIELD JAMES and JOHN ROBERTS, WIT____ SHEETS and ordered entered to the record.

Test
JOHN WALDRIP


The Supreme Court’s Failure To Protect Blacks’ Rights