PRIMARY DOCUMENT

Ned’s Freedom Suit (May 22, 1797)

ORIGINAL IMAGES
Virginia: In the High Court of Chancery
CONTEXT

In this May 22, 1797, freedom suit, Ned, a man enslaved by Elizabeth Pleasants, pleads his claim to freedom. A 1795 law allowed enslaved persons to plead a claim to freedom before a judge. Because the facts and law involved in Ned’s case were the same as those involved in Pleasants v. Pleasants, Ned’s case was joined with the Pleasants case.

FULL TEXT

Virginia,—In the High Court of Chancery, May 22nd, 1797.

Between 

Ned, Plaintiff,

and 

Elizabeth Pleasants, Defendant.

On the motion of Ned, who is detained in slavery by the defendant, he is allowed to sue his said mistress in this court, in forma pauperis, and John Warden is assigned his counsel to prosecute the said suit; and it is ordered, that his said mistress do not presume to beat or misuse him upon this account, and that she suffer him to come to the clerk’s office for commissions to take the depositions of his witnesses and to attend their examinations and the trial, and commissions are awarded the parties to examine and take the depositions of their witnesses.

CITE THIS ENTRY
APA Citation:
High Court of Chancery. Ned’s Freedom Suit (May 22, 1797). (2023, February 14). In Encyclopedia Virginia. https://encyclopediavirginia.org/primary-documents/neds-freedom-suit-may-22-1797.
MLA Citation:
High Court of Chancery. "Ned’s Freedom Suit (May 22, 1797)" Encyclopedia Virginia. Virginia Humanities, (14 Feb. 2023). Web. 21 May. 2024
Last updated: 2023, February 14
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