George Washington Papers
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Washington’s Slave List, June 1799

Washington’s Slave List

[June 1799]

Editorial Note

The list of Mount Vernon slaves which GW drew up, probably some time in June 1799, included those slaves owned by him outright, those who were controlled by him as part of Martha Washington’s dowry, and a number who were rented by him in 1786 by contract with Mrs. Penelope French at the time he acquired her life rights to land that she owned on Dogue Run.

The slaves Washington owned in his own right came from several sources. He was left eleven slaves by his father’s will; a portion of his half brother Lawrence Washington’s slaves, about a dozen in all, were willed to him after the death of Lawrence’s infant daughter and his widow; and Washington purchased from time to time slaves for himself, mostly before the Revolution.

Washington also hired for varying periods of time individual slaves, usually skilled artisans, from neighbors and acquaintances. These do not appear on this slave list.

Only one other complete roll of the slaves at Mount Vernon has been found. In February 1786 Washington recorded in his diary all the Mount Vernon slaves, dower and personal, the farms on which they lived, and their jobs. The total at that time came to 216; it did not include Mrs. French’s slaves, the use of whom Washington acquired later in the year.

There are also in the Washington Papers at the Library of Congress Washington’s lists of his tithables in Truro and Fairfax parishes (where Mount Vernon lies) for every year from 1760 through 1774. These have been printed in the Papers, Colonial Series. These lists name slaves living at Mount Vernon but do not include children under the age of sixteen and a few elderly slaves who were not tithed. The lists of tithables also include the names of indentured white servants and other whites living on the farms, including GW’s overseers and managers. For further information on GW’s slaves, see Charles Lee to GW, 13 Sept. 1786, and especially note 4 to that document, GW to William Triplett, 25 Sept. 1786, and notes 3 and 5 (Papers, Confederation Series description begins W. W. Abbot et al., eds. The Papers of George Washington, Confederation Series. 6 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1992–97. description ends , 4:247–49, 268–74), Memorandum: Division of Slaves [1762] and note to that document (Papers, Colonial Series description begins W. W. Abbot et al., eds. The Papers of George Washington, Colonial Series. 10 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1983–95. description ends , 7:172–74), Division of Slaves, 10 Dec. 1754 (ibid., 1:227–31), and Diaries description begins Donald Jackson and Dorothy Twohig, eds. The Diaries of George Washington. 6 vols. Charlottesville, Va., 1976–79. description ends , 4:277–83.

Negros Belonging to George Washington in his own right and by Marriage

GW TRADESMEN &CA
Names ages Remarks
Nat Smith His Wife Lucy D[ogue] R[un] dow[e]r
George Ditto Ditto Lydia R[iver] F[arm] Ditto
Isaac Carp[ente]r Kitty Dairy Ditto
James Ditto 40 Darcus Muddy Hole GW
Sambo Ditto Agnes R.F. dowr
Davy Ditto Edy U[nion] F[arm] GW
Joe Ditto Dolshy Spin[ne]r dowr
Tom Coop[e]r Nanny Muddy Hole GW
Moses Ditto No Wife
Jacob Ditto Ditto
George Gard[ene]r His wife Sall D.R. dowr
Harry Ditto No wife
Boatswain Ditc[her] His wife Myrtilla Spinr GW
Dundee Ditto His wife at Mr Lears
Charles Ditto Ditto Fanny U.F. dowr
Ben Ditto Ditto Penny R.F. GW
Ben Miller Ditto Sinah Mn Ho. dow.
Forrester Ditto No Wife
 
Nathan Cook 31 Wife Peg Muddy Hole GW
W. Muclus B[rick] Lay[e]r Ditto Captn Marshalls1
Juba Carter No wife
Matilda Spinner Boson Ditcher
Frank Ho[use] Servt Wife Lucy—Cook
Will Shoem[ake]r Lame—no wife2
amount 24
MANSION HOUSE
Passed Labour
Frank 80 No Wife
Gunner 90 Wife Judy R.F. GW
Sam Cook 40 Ditto Alce Muddy Hole Ditto
amount  3
Trades &ca not engagd in Cropping 24
Total 2[7] not cultivators of the Soil3
DOWER TRADESMEN &CA
Names ages Remarks
Tom Davis B: layr Wife at Mr Lear’s
Simms Carpr Ditto Daphne—French’s
Cyrus Post[ilio]n Ditto Lucy R.F. GW
Wilson Ditto 15 no wife
Godfrey Cartr Wife Mima Mn. Ho. dowr
James Ditto Ditto Alla Ditto ditto
Hanson Dist[ille]r No wife
Peter Ditto Ditto
Nat Ditto Ditto
Daniel Ditto Ditto
Timothy Ditto
Sla[min] Joe Ditchr Wife Sylla D.R. GW
Chriss Ho. Ser: Ditto Majr Wests4
Marcus Ditto no Wife
Lucy Cook Husband Ho[use] Frank GW
Molly No Husband5
Charlotte Sempst[res]s No husband
Sall Ho[use] M[ai]d Ditto
Caroline Ditto Husb[an]d Peter Hardman
Kitty Milk Md Ditto Isaa. Carpr GW
Alce Spinr Charles Freeman
 
Betty Davis Ditto Mrs Washington’s—Dick6
Dolshy Husbd Joe Carpr GW
Anna Ditto liv[in]g at George Town GW
Judy 21 No Husband
Delphy Ditto ditto
Peter lame Kn[i]tt[e]r No wife
Alla Ditto Husbd James Cartr dower
amount 28
MANSION HOUSE
Will Wife Aggy D.R. GW
Joe Postiln Ditto Sall R.F. Ditto
Mike No wife— son to Lucy
Sinah Husbd Miller Ben GW
Mima Ditto Godfrey Wag[one]r dowr
Lucy No Husband
Grace Husbd Mr Lear’s Juba
Letty No husband
Nancy Ditto ditto
Viner Ditto ditto
Eve 17 Ditto a dwarf
Delia 14 Ditto her sister
Children
Phil Son to Lucy
Patty daughter to Ditto
Rachel 12 Daughr to Caroline
Jemima 9 Ditto Ditto
Leanthe 8 Ditto Ditto
Polly 6 Ditto Ditto
Peter—B. 4 Son Ditto
Emery Son to Alce
Tom Ditto Ditto
Charles Ditto Ditto
Henriette Daughr Ditto
Barbara 10 Ditto to Kitty
Levina 6 Ditto Ditto
Elvey Ditto to Charlotte
Jenny Ditto Ditto
Eliza Ditto Ditto
Nancy 9 Ditto to Betty D[avis]
Oney 6 Ditto Ditto
Lucinda 2 Ditto Ditto
 
Daniel 6 Son to Anna
Anna 4 daugh. Ditto
Sandy Son Ditto
Sucky 5 daughr to Dolshy
Dennis 2 mo. Son Ditto
John Ditto to Mima
Randolph Ditto Ditto
Nancy daughr to Sinah
Burwell Son to Lucy
Passed labour
Doll No husband
Jenny Ditto Ditto
Old  2
Workers 12
Children 28
Amount 42 Mansion House
House Serts Spinners &ca &ca 28
Total 70 Not employed in the Crops &ca
Geo: Washington 2[7]
Dower 70
In all 9[7] not employed in the Crops
GW MUDDY HOLE F[ARM]
Names age Remarks
Gabriel 30 Wife Judy D.R. GW
Uriah 24
Moses 19 Son to Darcus GW
Kate old Husbd Will Muddy Hole dowr
Nanny ditto Ditto Tom—Cooper GW
Sacky 40 No Husband
Darcus 36 Husbd James—Carpr GW
Peg 34 Ditto Nathan—C[oo]k GW
Alce 38 Ditto Sam ditto GW
Amie 30 No Husband
Nancy 28 Husbd Abram French
Molly 26 No Husband
Virgin 24 Husbd Gabl Mr Lear
Letty 19 No husband
Kate long 18 daughr of Kate
Kate sht 18 Ditto Alce Muddy Hole
 
Isbel 16 Ditto Sarah—dead
Townshend 14 Son to Darcus
Children
Alce 8 Daughr to Darcus
Nancy 2 Ditto ditto
Lucy 11 Daughr to Peg
Diana 8 Ditto ditto
Alexander 3 Son ditto
Darcus 1 Daughr ditto
Oliver 11 Son to Nancy
Siss 8 Daughr ditto
Martin 1 Son ditto
George 8 Ditto to Alce
Adam 7 Ditto ditto
Cecelia 2 Daughr ditto
Sylvia 10 Ditto to Molly
James 7 Son ditto
Rainey 8 Daughr to Amie
Urinah 2 Ditto ditto
Billy 2 Son to Letty
Henry 1 Ditto ditto
Workers 18
Children 18 together 36
DOWER MUDDY HOLE F[ARM]
Names age Remarks
Davy—Ov[ersee]r 56 Wife Molly Muddy Hole dowr
Will—Mink 60 Ditto Kate ditto GW
Molly 76 Husband Davy—Ovr
Patience 14 Daughtr Dolly U. Farm
Mary 11 Ditto Betty ditto
Workers 3
Does nothing 1
Young 1 In all 5
Altogether at this Farm 41.
GW RIVER FARM
Names age Remarks
Robin 80 nearly passed labr
Natt 55 Wife Doll R.F. dowr
 
Ned 56 Ditto Hanh ditto ditto
Ben—Cartr 22
Peg 56 Husbd old Ben R.F. dowr
Judy 55 Ditto Gunna GW
Cloe 55 No husband
Suckey 50 Ditto ditto
Suckey—Bay 46 husbd belongg to Adans7
Sall 30 Ditto Postn Joe dowr
Rose 28 No husband
Penny 20 Husbd Ben Hubd GW
Lucy 18 Ditto Cyrus Post[ilio]n dowr
Hannah 12 daughr Daphne dead
Daniel 15 Son to Suckey R.F.
Henry 11 Son to Sall ditto
Nancy 11 daugh. to Bay Suke ditto
Children
Elijah 7 Son to Sall R.F.
Dennis 5 Ditto Ditto ditto
Gutridge 3 Ditto Ditto ditto
Polly 1 daughr Ditto ditto
Hagar 6 Ditto to Rose ditto
Simon 4 Son Ditto ditto
Tom 2 Ditto Ditto ditto
Joe 1 Ditto Ditto ditto
Nancy 4 Daughr to Bay Suke ditto
Passed labour
Ruth 70 husbd Breechy dowr
Workers 17
Children 9
Passed labr 1 together 27
DOWER RIVER FARM
Names age Remarks
Ben 70 Nearly done Peg for wife
Breechy 60 not better Ruth his wife
Johny 39 Wife Esther R.F. dowr
Richmond 20 No Wife
Ned 20
Heuky 17 Son to Agnes R.F.
Joe 22
Esther 40 Husbd Johny Ditto
Doll 58 Husbd Natt R.F. GW
 
Lydia 50 Ditto Smith Geo: GW
Agnes 36 Ditto Sambo—Car[pente]r GW
Alce 26 Ditto Lears John
Fanny 30 Ditto Alexanders8
Betty 20 Ditto Lears Reuben
Doll 16 No husbd Daugh. to Doll
Cecelia 14 No husbd Ditto to Agnes
Jack 12 Son to Doll
Anderson 11 Ditto to Agnes
Lydia 11 Daughr to Lydia
Children
Ralph 9 Son to Sall R.F.
Charity 2 Daughr Ditto Ditto
Charles 1 Son Ditto Ditto
Davy
6 }
4 Cornelia’s Childn dece[ase]d dow.
2
Lewis
Alce
Suckey 4 Daughtr to Alce R.F.
Jude 1 Ditto Ditto ditto
Milley 1 Daughr to Betty ditto
Peter 9 Son to Doll ditto
Hannah old Cooks—Husbd Ned ditto
Workers 19
Children 10
Cook 1 making 30
Altogether at this Farm 57.
GW DOGUE RUN FARM
Names age Remarks
Ben 57 Wife Peg D.R. Dowr
Long Jack 60 Wife Molly Ditto GW
Dick 46 Ditto Charity Ditto Ditto
Carter Jack 40 Ditto Grace Ditto Dowr
Simon 20 No Wife
Lawrence 14 Son to Matilda GW
Judy—blind 50 Husbd Gabriel Muddy Hole GW
Molly—Cook 45 Ditto long Jack D.R. GW
Charity 42 Ditto Dick Ditto Ditto
Priscilla 36 Ditto Slamin Joe Dowr
Linney 27 No husband
 
Agnes 25 Husbd Will Mann Ho. Dowr
Sarah 20 No Husband
Betty 16 Ditto Ditto
Sophia 14 Ditto Ditto Siller’s daughr
Savary 13 daughr to Siller D.R.
Children
Penny 11 Ditto Ditto ditto
Israel 10 Son Ditto ditto
Isrias 3 Ditto ditto
Christopher 1 Son Ditto ditto
Fomison 11 Daughr to Charity ditto
Dick 3 Ditto Ditto ditto
Bartley 6 Ditto to Linney ditto
Matilda 1 Daughr Ditto ditto
Lucy 2 Ditto to Sarah ditto
Guy 2 Son to Agnes ditto
Passed labour
Hannah 60 No Husbd partly an ideot
Workers 16
Children 10
Pass’d labr 1 together 27
DOWER DOGUE RUN FARM
Names age Remarks
Lucy 50 Husbd Smith Natt GW
Sall Twine 38 Ditto Gardr George GW
Grace 35 Ditto Cartr Jack GW
Peg 30 Ditto Ben D.R. GW
Kate 18 Ditto a Negro of Moreton’s9
Ned 14 Son to Lucy D.R.
Children
Teney 10 Daughr to Lucy D.R.
Barbary 11 Daughr to Sall T. D.R.
Abbay 10 Ditto Ditto Ditto
Hannah 4 Ditto Ditto Ditto
George 1 Son Ditto Ditto
Roger 10 Ditto to Grace D.R.
Molly 6 Daugr Ditto ditto
Jenny 3 Ditto Ditto ditto
 
Billy 6 Son to Peg ditto
Fendal 2 Ditto Ditto ditto
Peg 8 Mo. Daughr Ditto ditto
Passed labour
Sue 70 No Husband
Workers 6
Children 11
Pass’d labr 1 Making 18
Whole amt at this Farm 45
GW UNION FARM
Names age Remarks
London 64 No wife
Joe 24
Edy 26 Husbd Davy—Carp[ente]r GW
Children
Sarah 6 Daughr to Edy
Nancy 1 Ditto ditto
Passed labr
Flora 64 No Husband
Workers 3
Children 2
Pass’d labr 1 Making 6
DOWER UNION FARM
Names age Remarks
Sam Kitt 78 Wife at Danl Sto<n>es10
Cæsar 50 No Wife
Paul 36 Ditto Ditto
John 16 Son to Betty U.F.
Betty 62 No husbd Cooks
Lucy 50 Husbd at Cap. Marshalls
Fanny 36 Ditto Charles—Ditchr
Jenny 34 Ditto Mrs Washns George
Rachell 34 No Husband
Milly 22 Ditto Ditto
Lucretia 20 Ditto Ditto
Gideon 13 Son to Betty
 
Jamie 11 Ditto to Fanny
Ephraim 11 Ditto to Rachel
Children
Davy 8 Ditto Ditto
Guss 3 Ditto Ditto
Beck 4 Daughr Ditto
Eneas 1 Son Ditto
Elizabeth 9 Daughr to Doll
Suckey 11 Ditto at Mrs W. Ditto
Elias 2 Mo. Son Ditto
Daphne 5 Daughr to Fanny
Charles 1 Son Ditto
Felicia 7 Daughr to Jenny
Jonathan 3 Son to Ditto
Hellam 1 Ditto Ditto
Diana 1 Daughr to Milly
Jesse 6 Son to Patt dead
Passed labour
Daphne 70 No Husband
Doll 52 Lame & pretds to be so
Workers 14
Children 14
Non-Workrs 2 Making 30
Whole amount at this Farm exclusive of French’s Neg[roe]s 36
RECAPITULATION
         Belonging to GW                    Dower          
  Workg     Childn     Workg     Childn   Grand
Where & how Empld Men Womn boys girls boys girls Total Men Womn boys girls boys girls Total Total
Tradesmen & others, not employed on the Farms—viz.
Smiths 2 2 2
Bricklayers 1 1 1 1 2
Carpenters 5 5 1 1 6
Coopers 3 3 3
Shoemaker 1 1 1
Cooks 1 1 1 1 2
Gardeners 2 2 2
Millers 1 1 2 2
House-Servants 1 1 2 4 6 7
Ditchers 4 4 1 1 5
Distillery 4 1 5 5
Postilions 1 1 2 2
Waggoners & Cartrs 1 1 2 2 3
 
Milk Maid 1 1 1
Spinners & Knitrs 1 1 1 7 8 9
Mansion-Ho. 3 9 3 2 8 15 40 40
Muddy-hole 3 14 1 8 10 36 2 2 4 40
River-Farm 3 9 2 2 6 4 26 6 9 2 1 5 5 28 54
Dogue Run F. 6 7 1 7 3 24 5 1 5 6 17 41
Union-Farm 2 1 2 5 4 6 3 8 6 27 32
36 32 4 3 21 19 115 28 42 11 5 26 32 144 259
Passed labr or that do not Work
Muddy hole 1 1 1
River Farm 1 1 2 1 1 2 4
Dogue Run 3 3 1 1 4
Union Farm 1 1 3 3 4
Mansion Ho. 3 3 2 2 5
40 37 4 3 21 19 124 29 50 11 5 26 32 153 277
Hired fm Mrs. French 9 9 2 4 6 10 40 40
Grand Total 49 36 6 7 27 29 164 29 50 11 5 26 32 153 317
A LIST OF NEGROS HIRED FROM MRS FRENCH
Names Ages Remarks
Will Old but hearty Looks after the Stock Wife at Mrs French’s11
Abram in his prime Wife at Muddy hole Nancy
Paschall Ditto No wife lately lost Cornelia M.H.
Tom Ditto 28 No wife getting Blind
Isaac Ditto 29 Ditto lives at Muddy hole Farm
Moses Ditto 26 Plowman & Carter
James 24 At the Distillery
Julius 23 Carter12
Spencer 20 Ditto and Mower13
Sabine 60 Husband14
Lucy 55 Ditto McCarty’s George a Knitter15
Daphne 40 Ditto Simms Carpenter Plougher16
Delia 35 No Husband Spinner17
Grace 28 Husband Mrs Washns Davy Plougher18
Siss 25 Ditto Ditto Jack Ditto19
Milly 18 No Husband20
Nancy 16 Ditto21
Hannah 14 Ditto22
Daniel 16 Son of Delia’s
Isaac 14 Ditto of Rose deceased
Matilda 13 Daughr of Daphne
Betty 13 Ditto Delia
Briney 12 Ditto Lucy
Grace 12 Ditto Rose deceased
Children
Stately 10 Son of Lucy’s
Renney 6 Daughr Ditto
Raison 3 Ditto Ditto
Morgan 2 Son Ditto
Phœnix 1 Ditto Ditto
Polly 9 Daughr of Daphne’s
Maria 2 Ditto Ditto
Jack 7 Son of Delia
Julia 4 Daugh. Ditto
Nelly 2 Ditto Ditto
Ambrose 1 Son Ditto
Bob 10 Ditto of Grace
Sall 8 Daugh. Ditto
Judy 4 Ditto Ditto
Augusta 1 Ditto Ditto
Nancy 10 Ditto of Sabine
Men 9
Women 9
Workg Boy’s & Girls 6
Children 16 In all 40

AD, ViMtvL. The format of the document has been changed somewhat in order to fit easily on the pages. The slave list for Union farm has been moved to its proper place in the document; Washington wrote at the top of the Recapitulation page: “Union Farm ought to have been entered in this place; but by mistake, was carrd to the other side.” Abbreviations and contractions have been silently expanded when necessary for sake of clarity. A somewhat different list of only Mrs. French’s slaves was enclosed in Washington’s letter to Benjamin Dulany of 15 July 1799 (ALS [letterpress copy], NN: Washington Papers).

1Capt. Thomas Hanson Marshall (1731–1801) lived at Marshall Hall, just across the Potomac River from Mount Vernon, in Charles County, Maryland.

2Will was Washington’s old mulatto body servant Billy, or William Lee, who had served with him throughout the Revolution. See note 3 to Washington’s Last Will and Testament, printed above.

3Washington had a total “26” here because of a mistake in bringing a figure from the previous page. The mistake was repeated in his summing up of Mansion House and Tradesmen.

4Christopher was Washington’s current body servant who was with him at his death. His wife was either a slave or a free black woman living at Roger West’s. See note 11 to Tobias Lear’s Narrative Accounts of the Death of George Washington, printed below.

5Molly, Charlotte, and Caroline—all listed here among the dower slaves—were in Washington’s room when he died. See Tobias Lear’s Narrative Accounts of the Death of George Washington, printed below.

6Mrs. Washington was Elizabeth Foote Washington, widow of Washington’s old manager and cousin Lund Washington, who lived at Hayfield, northwest of Mount Vernon. Several other Mount Vernon servants were married to slaves at Hayfield.

7“Adans” was probably Abednego Adams (1721–1809), Washington’s closest neighbor, who lived on Little Hunting Creek.

8This may be one of Robert Alexander’s (d. 1793) sons. Alexander had lived on a plantation upriver from Mount Vernon.

9Moreton was probably Archibald Moreton who lived near Belvoir on the road from Washington’s mill to Boggess’s house.

10This may be Daniel Stone who lived in Truro Parish on the road from Washington’s mill to Robert Boggess’s.

11Penelope Manley French lived at Rose Hill, on the back road to Alexandria.

12The slave list at NN, which was enclosed in GW’s letter to Benjamin Dulany of 15 July 1799, describes Julius as “A very good Carter, and can do any other work, although defective in Shape from his Infancy.”

13The slave list at NN describes him as “A good Carter and Mower and able at any business.”

14The slave list at NN calls her “A good working woman, notwithstanding her <age>.”

15Daniel McCarty, Jr. (1759–1801), lived at Cedar Grove on Pohick Bay. The slave list at NN describes Lucy as “Lame, or pretends to be so occasioned by rheumatic pains, but is a good knitter, & so employed.”

16The slave list at NN claims she “Ploughs very Well, and is a good hand at any work.”

17The slave list at NN describes her as “Equally good at the Spinn<ing Wheel> or Hoe, but has been kept chiefly at the <farm>.”

18The slave list at NN calls her “A very good Plougher—and equally so at all sorts of Work.”

19The slave list at NN claims she “Ploughs Well—and can Milk & Churn.”

20The slave list at NN describes her as “A full grown Woman, and <illegible>ly; has been used to Common work only.”

21The slave list at NN describes her as “The same—in all respects.”

22The slave list at NN claims she is “nearly at her full growth and a woman in appear[anc]e.”

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