The Mistreatment of Servant Charetie Dallen (1649)


In these proceedings from the Lower Norfolk County Court, dated July 31, 1649, the court considers two depositions that attest to the mistreatment, by Deborah Fernehaugh, of her indentured servant Charetie Dallen.


The deposition of Joseph Mulders Aged 23 yeares or thereabouts Sworne and examined Sayeth

That Deborah Fernehaugh, the Mistress of this deponent, did beate her mayd Servant in the quartering house before the dresser more Liken a dogge then a Christian, and that at a Certaine time, I felt her head, which was beaten as soft as a sponge, in one place, and that as there shee was a weeding, shee complayned and sayd, her backe bone as shee thought was broken with beating, and that I did see the mayds arme naked which was full of blacke and blew bruises and pinches, and her necke Likewise and that afterwards, I tould my Mistress of it and said, that two or three blowes, could not make her in such a Case, and after this my speeches shee Chidge [chided] the said mayd, for shewing her body to the men, and very often afterwards she the said mayd would have showen mee, how shee had beene beaten, but I refused to have seene it, saying it concernes me not, I will doe my worke and if my Mistress abuse you; you may complaine, and about 8 dayes since, being about the time shee last went to Complaine, I knew of her goeing, but would not tell my mistress of it, although shee asked mee, and sayd I could not chuse but know of it, and further hee sayeth not.

sworne the 31th July 1649

Thomas Bridge Clerk of Court

The Marke of

Joseph X Mulders

Michaell Mikaye aged 22 yeares of there abouts, sworne and examined, sayeth verbatim as the above mentioned deponent sayeth and deposeth and further sayeth not.

sworne the 31th July 1649

Thomas Bridge Clerk of Court

The Marke of

Michael X Mikay

Under the depositions of Joseph Mulders and Michaell Mikaye of the misusage of Charetie dallen, by her Mistress Deborah Fernehaugh, and by many other often Complaints, by other sufficient testimonies, and although the said Deborah hath had advertisements thereof from the Court yet persisteth in the very Ill usadge of her said sarvant, as appeareth to the board, It is therefore ordered that the said Charetie Dallen shall no longer remaine in the house or service with her said Mistress, but is to bee and Continue at the house of Mr. Thomas Lambard [Lambert], untill such time as the said Deborah Fernehaugh shall sell or otherwise dispose of her said servant, for her best advantage of her the said Deborah.


The Duties of Servants and Masters; an excerpt from The Whole Duty of Man (1658) A Black Indentured Servant Sues for His Freedom (1675) An Attack on the Mistress Elizabeth Bowen (1679)

APA Citation:
Lower Norfolk County Court. The Mistreatment of Servant Charetie Dallen (1649). (2020, December 07). In Encyclopedia Virginia.
MLA Citation:
Lower Norfolk County Court. "The Mistreatment of Servant Charetie Dallen (1649)" Encyclopedia Virginia. Virginia Humanities, (07 Dec. 2020). Web. 19 May. 2024
Last updated: 2020, December 07
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