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Harrisburg's "Free Person of Color" Registration Ordinance of 1821

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Page images of the original Harrisburg Register are below. Click for full sized images.

Below is a page by page transcription of Harrisburg's "Negro Entry Book" from 1821. This was compiled by borough officials per the ordinance passed that year. See the page "Harrisburg's Registration Ordinance of 1821" for a full transcription of this law meant to control the borough's free African American community. The text below identifies those African American persons living in and visiting the borough during this time period. The original docket is housed in the archives of the City of Harrisburg. The Afrolulmens Project is grateful to the city archives for the page images.

The entries begin on May 7, 1821 and continue regularly, covering about one year. Only two names are recorded after May 1822, one dated 1826 and one in 1831. The spelling is inconsistent, possibly indicating different persons making the entries. All spelling and misspelling is preserved from the original script.

Harrisburg Registry of Free African Americans, 1821

Borough Docket, 7 May 1821

Archives of the City of Harrisburg, Pennsylvania

Page 1

Page one of the borough registry.

May 7 1821

  • John Battis, Residing in walnut street a Chimly Sweep
  • Nancy Battis the wife of John, 1 Child 1 year old James
  • [paid?] Inmates Samuel Green David Owens Thomas George Smith Cato Grand Henry Jonston
  • Derrick Pool David Johnston An Johnston betz Pool George Colly and his wife
  • Bell Buey Residing with James McClendon in 3 Street from Parry County brought by James Alricks to Harrisburgh hath a good Carector
  • Elizabeth King Resides with George Parker in Front Street formerly from York County aged 41
  • David Jonston Resides John Battis and his wife Maria and Child about 18 Month old all from Philadelphia
  • Charles Bottler Resides in Walnut Street with John Battis from Barks County
  • Francis Pall Residing in one of Pearsons House laborer from New Jersey about 12 years ago and his wife Molly & Child
  • Molly Pall the wife of Francis from Carlisly
  • Francis Grubb Residing with Mr. Wallace from Lancaster County forgeman by trade
  • Charles James Residing at Mr. Friedrich, from York County & 1 Child
  • Hetty Deets Residing at Mr. Biglers brought up by Robert Harris 1 Child 1 year old
  • George Dellin Reside with James Aspy born in Reding
  • George Johnston Recides in Strawberry ally in one of Zeglers Houses, Laboror and his wife Jane 2 Children from the State of Delawar Served his time with Mr. Thomas
  • Samuel Bell Recides with the widow Benjamin brought up in Dauphin County
  • George Parker Recide in Front Street in a House of Robert Harris Mittwife by trade
  • Ishman Bryan Reciding in Market Street Served his time with John Gross and his wife Florance
  • Andrew Hall Recides in Mulberry Street laboror born in Shippensburgh Sarved his time with John Harby
  • Cassy Hall Recides with her brother above, 1 Child 9 years
  • Charles Dorrethey Recides in Strawberry ally Zechs House his wife 1 Child plasterer by trate from Philadelphia

Page 2

Page two of the borough registry.
  • William McLaine Recide in Strawbarry ally with George Johston House Carpenter from Marreland Prince George County Ininean
  • Dina Buttler his wife
  • John Salaford RD John Kelcker from Cape France 1 Child 3 year old
  • Susana Campble Recids at Mr. Peacock from Adams County
  • Mary Sanders Rd in Front Street below Robert Harris brought up in Cumberland County by John Black
  • Martha Jones Rd. with Mr. Ceneels [?] 2 Street born in the City of Philadelphia with Mr. McDonnel
  • Phillip Young Rd. in 3 Street Laboror brought up in Marreland in Baltimor County and his wife Marry
  • William White Rd. in Market Street white washing Wife Susana born in Philadelphia inmate James Kelly Susana White
  • John Kelly R in Market Street white washing from the State of Marreland
  • James McClindon Rd. in 3 Street barbar his wife Lidia
  • James Pawel Rd. with George Parker Front Street born in Marreland 3 miles from Montgomery Courthouse then bound to Williams in Bedford County aged about 25
  • John Thomas Recides in Dooberry Alley between 3&4 Street born in Franklin County hath 2 Children
  • Hetty Thomas Sarved her time with John Kain born in Mareland, wife of the above
  • Lucita G. Bill Recides at Mr. Buhler born in Smithfield State of New York
  • John Goold Recids Corner of Blackbarry Ally and Dooberry Laboror Born in Mareland Boltimor County with Stanesbarry about 6 year in the State
  • Hetty Goold 1 Child born in Marreland as above
  • Daniel Hall Recids in Mulbarry Street Fultons House Sarved his time Shippensburgh with Thomas Cromble
  • Fanny Hall 2 Children 1—12 year old 1 6 weeks born in York Sarved her time with George Irwin
  • James Samons Rcids in Strawberry ally and his wife Racqel waiter from Delawar Dover
  • Racqel Was born in Dover Delawar State Sarved her time with the Widow Nixon
  • Andrew H. Frazer Recids Strawberry Ally Zecks House born in the State of New Hameshire County Sarved his time with Josiah Morton 4 years in Harrisburgh

Page 3

Page three of the borough registry.
  • Cato Broyan Recides in Strawbarry Ally Zecks House born in Dauphin County Sarved his time with Mr. Cox farmer by his trate
  • Tama his wife was born in Marreland Sarved her time Northhumber County 1 Son
  • Susana Lawson Aged 23 Recids with Mr. Grubers 1 Child 9 months old.
  • Hanna Smith Rds with F. R. Shunk in Market Street born in Carlisly or M[?] Raised by Mr. Blain
  • Eliza Brister Recides in Front Street with Mr. Moyers Hosler born in New Castel County State of Delawar Now about 9 years in this State Lived with Benjamin Hollet
  • Nancy Pope Resides in Pine Street with John Hills bred in Shepperstown Marryland Sarved her time with Mr. Gibson Chambersburgh
  • Mosses Barns Resides at Mrs. Buhlers in 2 Street waiter bred in Mareland Marys County Sarved his time with John Thomson Hagerstown and the Remainter of his time with Stephen Decator
  • James Hollis Recides with Mr Fridly in 2 Street Hosler bred & born with George Hamel Shippensburgh 2 months in this town
  • Matilda Hunder Recids with G. Fahnestock born in Homerburgh Bucks County Lived with Cornel Worton from thence to Little York from thence to Cumberland 6 months ago about 17 years
  • Mark Johnston Recides in Strawberry Ally with Charles Daugherty Laboror bred & born in Harrisburgh with Samuel Lard
  • Lot Stout Resides in Front Street with George Parker wever by trate from the State of Delawar Sarved his time with Joseph Phillips near Arrytown before that he was in the Citty with Henry Hammilton 3 years in Harrisburgh Lewisa his wife
  • Margaret Allen Recides in Front Street at Mr. McKinney Sarved her time with him from Williamton
  • William Mabry Rcids in Market Street Zicks House forge man Sarved his time with Edward Broyan Robert Coleman Lancaster County born in Lancaster
  • Hanna More Recides with Phillip Jones in Strawberry Ally Sarved her time with William Fahnestock in York County aged 35 years
  • Raqel Thomas Recides at Mr. Daugherty 1 Child 5 years old brought up by Mr. Dearmon and Sarved her time with Jary Rees 42 years old
  • Susana Bradly Rsides in Doobarry ally 1 Child 7 years old born in York County one year in Harrisburgh

Page 4

Pages four and five of the borough registry.
  • George Chester Recides in Doobarry Ally 1 Child 7 years old. Born in York County Mareland Sarved his time with Thomas Collins keeps an oyster shop
  • Hannah his wife Do
  • Bell Jonston Recids with Robert Harris Front Street born in Harrisburgh was free at 18 years
  • Peter Hains Recids in Strawbarry Ally boodblack Sarved his time with Judge Yetz Lancaster 2 years in Harrisburgh
  • Elizabith Anterson Haines wife born in Chester County
  • Lea Black Recids in Strawbarry Ally in Zicks House bred & born in York County Lived with Thomas Kasper Pitch Bottem 6 years in this town
  • John Molson Resids in Doobarry ally 3 Childron from 11, 17, & 7 years old born in Lancaster County
  • Elizabeth Molson his wife
  • William Bradford in Strawbarry ally Zecks House bred & born in Marryland Prince George County about 9 years in this State 3 years in Harrisburgh
  • Elinor his wife born in Carlisly
  • Nancy Thomson Wife of Edward Thomson Recides in Blackbarry ally, born in Northhumble her Maden Name was Adams aged about 20 6 Children 4 gaerls 2 sons
  • Michael Gallager August 29th 1821 Recids at in Market Street at C. Brown Bred and born in Lancaster with Henry Reigert; Sarved My Lach time with Matthew Irwin aged 33 Sarved to 28 laboror
  • John Smith Reciding with with Molly Williams in Chesnut Street born in Harrisburgh Sarved his time with Joseph Burd of Dauphin County, aged 25 years brought up a farm & free about 6 years, lived with D Dabler and just before he came here in McLan?burgh
  • Graig Williams Recides with Andrew Sharpers in Lockis Street born in Chester County Sarved his time with Jefrey Evens Blacksmtih by trate aged 26 years
  • Francis Wilson Recids with Mr. Elder of Harrisburg was born in Mareland Served his time Michel Wilson near Emeryburgh aged 29 ys Laboror Came to Harrisburgh the 4 of Aprill.

Page 5

  • Arther Donnel Recides with Zeckel Carter in Marcket Street Shoemacker by trate, Reciding in Adams County; near Gattesburgh, born in Boltimor County bound to Samuel Woods in Cumberland County, until he was 18 years then he was bound to John Rathabaugh Shoemacker [to]? 24 Paid May 7th 1822
  • James Becker Rcides with Mr. Doebler 2 Street laboror aged about 26 year born in Bedford County freeborn—Singleman. Paid
  • Kiney Donnel Recide with Zickle Carter in Harrisburg Laboror aged 17 born in the state of Mareland in Boltimor County, 12 years in this State May 11th 1822
  • Jessy May Recides in Strawberry Ally in a house of Ziekle Carter, in Harrisburgh papermaker born Chester County Bradford township, Sarved his time with Parks & Gibson in Chester County aged 49 hath a Wife, 2 Childron 1 boy & 1 Daughter aged boy is about 19 Daughter 17 Years. 1822 May 13
  • Ezekial Carter Boyd Resides with Mr. King said he Served his time with Judge Weidman at the Forge and was born in Dauphin County toward Jonesestown [sic] aged 27 years Registered Decr 8th 1826 [editor's note: refers to Union Forge, former forge belonging to Robert Coleman and sold to John Weidman in 1802]
  • John Smith Laborer resides in Strawberry Ally in the borough of Harrisburg about 35 years of age has a scar above his right eye & one on his left hand near the knuckle bone of his forefinger. Has a wife by name Jane John Smith is about five feet five inches &1/2 high, Entered June 27th 1831.

[end of entries]

Lancaster's "Negro Entry Book" is examined and detailed in the article "The Negro Entry Book:  A Document of Lancaster County's Antebellum African American Community," by Leroy T. Hopkins, Jr., published in the Journal of the Lancaster County Historical Society.

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