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Transcriptions of Virginia Gazette Runaway Slave Ads

May 5, 1738. Ran away from the Subscriber's Quarters on Sapponic, in Prince George County, 14 or 15 Weeks ago, a Mulattoe Man Slave, named Tom, 25 Years old, about 5 feet 8 or 9 Inches high, thin faced, and bushy Hair, if not cut off; he is very apt to grin when he speaks, or is spoken to; had on an old dark Fustian Coat, with plain yellow Metal Buttons; Hath been several Times taken up, and escaped again before he could be deliver'd to the Quarter whereunto he belon'd; and the last Time shackled, Handcuffed, and an Iron Collar about his Neck, with Prongs, and to some of them Links. Whoever will deliver him to me, in Charles-City County, shall have a Pistole Reward, besides what the law allows; and if brought from any great Distance a farther Reward suitable to the Trouble, by

John Stith

N.B. It is suspected he will endeavour to escape on Board some Vessel

May 2, 1766. Run away from the subscriber, in Mecklenburg county on Wednesday last, a fellow named Jack. It appears he has been principally concerned in promoting the late disorderly meetings among the Negroes, and is gone off for fear of being prosecuted for many robberies he has committed. He is a low squat made fellow, bow-legged, his eyes remarkably red, has been branded on the right cheek R, and on the left M, though not easily to be perceived. It is supposed he intends for Carolina or Georgia. Whoever apprehends the said slave, and will deliver him to me, shall receive 50s. If taken 50 miles from home and 6d [pence] a mile for a greater distance.

Robert Munford.

Oct. 10, 1767. Prince George, Sept. 28, 1767. RUN away from the subscriber, the 22d of this instant, three slaves, viz. JUPITER, alias GIBB, a Negro fellow, about 35 years of age, about 6 feet high, knock kneed, flat footed, the right knee bent in more than the left, has several scars on his back from a severe whipping he lately had at Sussex court-house, having been tried there for stirring up the Negroes to an insurrection, being a great Newlight preacher. ROBIN about 25 years of age, a stout fellow, about 6 feet high, has a film over one of his eyes, a sore on one of his shins, and is brother to Gibb. DINAH, an old wench, very large, near 6 feet high; she has a remarkable stump of a thumb, occasioned by a whitlow, by which the bones of the first joint came out and is mother to the two fellows. They carried with them a variety of clothes, among the rest an old blue duffil great coat, one bearskin do. a scarlet jacket, and a fine new linen shirt. It is supposed they will endeavour to make their escape southward. Whoever takes up, and conveys to me the above slave, shall have a reward of 50s. for each of the fellows, and 20s for the wench, if taken in Virginia; if any other government, £5 for each of the fellows, and 40s for the wench paid by

George Noble

Oct. 20, 1768. RUN away from the subscriber in Chesterfield, the Wednesday before Easter last, a bright mulatto wench named Jude, about 30 years old is very remarkable, has lost one eye, but which I have forgot, has long black hair, a large scar on one of her elbows, and several other scars on her face, and has been subject to running away ever since she was ten years old. I have great reason to think she will pass for a free woman, and endeavour to make into South Carolina. She is very knowing about house business, can spin, weave, sew, and iron, well. She had on when she went away her winter clothing, also a blue and white striped Virginia cloth gown, a Virginia cloth coperas and white striped coat, besides others too tedious to mention. Whoever conveys the said slave to me shall be well rewarded for their trouble.

Mary Clay

May 11, 1769. Run away from the subscriber in Charles City county, the 14th of April last, a VIRGINIA born Negro fellow named PETER, about 44 years of age, of a black complexion, a slim fellow, his teeth cut before as if broke off, and is a sly artful rogue if not watched; he carried with him sundry clothes, such as crop Negroes usually wear, also a white Virginia cloth waistcoat and petticoat, a Tarlton plaid gown, and sundry other of his wife's clothes. He also carried away a gun of an uncommon large size, and a fiddle, which he is much delighted in when he gets any strong drink, which he is remarkably fond of, and then very talkative and impudent. I suspect he has gone to Amelia county, to Mr. Tanner's, as Mrs. Tanner, alias Mrs. Johnson, sold him to Mr. Richard Hayles, and by him sold to the subscriber, as he often told the other Negroes that if ever I used him ill he would go to his old mistress, as she never sold him to Mr. Hayles, but only lent him during pleasure, and that he would go to her and be protected. The said Negro is outlawed; and I will give £10 to any person or persons that will kill him and bring me his head, separate from his body, or 40s. if delivered to the subscriber near the Long Bridge.

William Gregory

Apr. 5, 1770. Forty Shillings Reward. RUN away from the subscriber, in York County, about the 11th or 12th of November last, a very black Negro man named Ben, about 5 feet 6 inches high, 35 years old, spare made, by trade a carpenter, and understands something of the coopers business, his upper teeth rotten, he has many clothes, so it is impossible to describe them. He took with him sundry carpenters and coopers tools. I expect he will endeavour to pass for a freeman, as he can read tolerably well, and am doubtful of his obtaining a pass from some evil disposed person, and leave the colony. This is to desire all master of vessels, and others, from harbouring him; and I will give the above reward to any person that will deliver him to me, at Mr. James Shield's, near Williamsburg.

Joshua Jones

June 16, 1774. RUN away from the subscriber, about the 20th of April, a Mulatto Fellow named Peter Brown, by Trade a Painter, but can do Carpenters Work, about 35 or 40 Years of Age, five Feet eight or nine Inches high, of a dark Complexion, slim made, thin Visage, has lost several of his upper fore teeth, is fond of Singing and sings well, has several Suits of Clothes, therefore I cannot describe his Dress. He was some Years past tried for Robbery; and found guilty, but obtained the Governour's Pardon on suffering one Year's Imprisonment. After that Time he was sold to Mr. John Fox of Gloucester, with whom he lived one or two Years; he then ran away and passed for a Freeman in the Counties of King William, Caroline, and Hanover, where he was taken up and brought home. As he had a Wife at Mr. Benjamin Hubbard's, it is likely he may be lurking in that Neighbourhood, or near Petersburg, where he was raised. Whoever takes up the said Runaway, and delivers him to me at Osborne's, shall have 40s. Reward. All persons are forbid from harbouring or carrying him out of the Colony.

Peterfield Trent

Oct. 13, 1774. Run away from the Subscriber, last Friday, a likely Virginia born Negro Man called JOHNNY, about 22 Years of Age, five Feet eight Inches high, has a down Look, and Waiter. This Fellow formerly belonged to Armistead Lightfoot, Esq; deceased, and is remarkable for Cock-fighting, Card-playing, and many other Games. I suspect he will pass as a Freeman, and endeavour to get out of the Colony, as he can read and write. All Masters of Vessels are cautioned not to carry him off, at their Peril. I will give 40s. if taken within this Colony and brought home, besides what the Law allows, or £5 if taken in any other Colony.

Charles Grymes

Dec. 1, 1774. RUN away from the subscriber, a Virginia born Negro Fellow named WALTON, 23 Years of Age, of a light Complexion, middle Size, has a pleasing Countenance, his Skin very smooth, one of his upper fore Teeth is decaying, which it is likely he will pull out, and his Hair on the fore Par of his Head is cut short; he carried with him four Shirts, two of them new Sheeting, two Suits of Clothes, one Russia Drilling, the other dark brown Duffil, trimmed with gilt Buttons, &c. He had a Surtout Coat, Velvet Cap, Hat, and every Thing else suitable for a Waitingman. As he is a very artful and likely Fellow, he may endeavour to pass for a free Man, and I am doubtful has got a Pass from a Negro of mine who can write a good Hand. This Fellow has waited on me for three Years past, and always rode with me, so that he has a general Acquaintance: but as he was raised in Nansemond, near the old Town, it is probably he is gone there, as his Friends live in that Neighbourhood. Whoever takes up the said Runaway, and brings him home, shall have £3 Reward, or 30s. if committed to Jail. All Persons are forbid harbouring or carrying the said Slave out of the Colony.

Peterfield Trent.

** As the said Fellow ran away without receiving any Abuse, the Taker up is desired to give him ten Lashes every ten Miles.

Dec. 1, 1774. RUN away from the Subscriber's Plantation in Manakin Town, the last of July or first of August last, a black Negro Man named Tom, formerly the Property of Major Henry Gaines of King William, but since the said Gaines's Death has been sold several Times, and is now my Property. He was bred by Major Gaines to keeping Horses and riding Races, but is now a good Sawyer. He is not tall, knock-kneed, full Eyes, and I believe a Speck in one of them, caused by a Chip as he was cutting with an Axe. He values himself for his fine Dancing, is subject to Liquor, and fond of talking about Religion. If he is taken in the Colony, and brought to me, near the old Courthouse, in Albemarle County, or my Overseer, James Scott, at Manakin Town, I will give £3 and if out of Colony £10.

John Scott

June 16, 1775. TEN POUNDS REWARD Run away from the subscriber in Dunmore county, in May last, a negro fellow named SAM. 5 feet 5 or 6 inches high, has a broad face, and is a well looking fellow. As to his clothing, I cannot be certain, he having carried several things with him. He also took with him an old bay horse very gray about the head, an iron pot, a narrow axe, a handsaw, and an old smooth bore gun. About three years ago he purchased his freedom of his old master, Mr. Francis Slaughter, and continued in that state till this spring, when it was discovered he was attempting to inveigle away a number of negroes to the new or Indian country (where he had been most of the last summer) upon which the neighbours insisted on his being reduced to slavery again, and I purchased him. I imagine he will endeavour to pass as a freeman, he having a discharge from his old master, as well as one from Lord Dunmore, having served in the expedition against the Indians last fall. Whoever delivers said slave to me shall have the reward that is offered.

Gabriel Jones

Dec. 1, 1774. RUN away from the subscriber in Dinwiddie, the 5th day of April last, a dark mulatto man named JEMMY, 5 feet 9 or 10 inches high, well made, has remarkable long feet, the middle toes longer than the rest, which they ride over, has lost part of one of his foreteeth, which occasions the next to it to look blue, is a very artful fellow, and will probably endeavour to pass for a freeman; he is very fond of singing hymns and preaching, and has been about Williamsburg ever since he went off, passing by the name of James Williams. Whoever apprehends the said slave, and secures him so that I get him again, shall have 40s reward, and if delivered to me in Dinwiddie.

David Walker

Nov. 29, 1776. RUN away the first of January 1775 a likely mulatto negro wench named Kate, 18 years of age, well made, 5 feet 9 or 10 inches high, and talks very smooth. She was hired to mr. Philip Moody of Williamsburg in 1774, and last year to mr. John Thruston, from whence she ran off. She has got a husband in Williamsburg, and probably may pass for a free person as she is well acquainted in that city, and I have repeatedly heard of her being there. She formerly belonged to the estate of Mr. John Cary, deceased, of York county. I will give 20s. to any person that will secure her in jail and give me intelligence thereof, or 40s if brought to me in King & Queen, at Mr. John Thruston's.