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Regional Fugitive Slave Advertisements


October 12, 1794: Jack and Tom abscond from John Sparks and Andrew Hunter in Woodbury, New Jersey

Fugitive slave ad for Jack and Tom, who escaped from Woodbury, New Jersey

Forty Dollars Reward.

RAN away from the subscribers in Woodbury, Gloucester County, New-Jersey, on Sunday morning the 12th instant,
Two young Negro Fellows,

named Jack and Tom, each about 20 years of age; Jack of a dark black colour and a sour look; Tom is of an open countenance, of a yellowish colour, and much disposed to laugh.

They are sprightly active fellows, and but little short of six feet high; they were both well dressed; Jack had on a blue broad cloth coat and different kids of clothes.

Whoever takes up said servants, and secures them in any goal in the United States, so that their masters may get them again shall receive the above reward and reasonable expences,
John Sparks,
Andrew Hunter.
Oct. 14

Notes: Slaveholders are possibly: John Sparks (1717-1802) of Woodbury, a judge and member of the state legislature, he also raised troops during the Revolution to fight the British. Owned a 200-acre farm near the Delaware River. In his will he bequeathed his Negro Boy Tom to his wife, Ruth, and to his son Randell he bequeathed his "negro men Friday, Mark and Juda" all until they reach age 25, at which point they were to be manumitted.
The Hunter-Lawrence-Jessup mansion is a historic house preserved by the Gloucester County Historical Society in Woodbury
Andrew Hunter (1752-1823) was a prominent Gloucester citizen and Continental Army chaplain. A brief biography may be found here.

Source: Gazette of the United States (Philadelphia), 10 November, 1794, page 4.

Covering the history of African Americans in central Pennsylvania from the colonial era through the Civil War.

Support the Afrolumens Project. Read the books:

The Year of Jubilee, Volume One: Men of God, Volume Two: Men of Muscle



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