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Regional Fugitive Slave Advertisements


January 8, 1795: The Gloucester County, New Jersey Jailor is holding suspected fugitive slave Isaac

1795 New Jersey Jailor ad for captured suspected fugitive slave Isaac.


Was committed to the Goal of Gloucester county, New-Jersey, some time in October last,

A Negro Man,

Named Isaac, on suspicion of being a Runaway; says he came from Virginia -- His Master, if any he hath, is desired to come, prove property, pay charges, and take him away in three weeks from this date, otherwise he will be let go at the expiration of that time upon paying fees, &c.
Joseph Hews,
Dec 24

Notes: Isaac has been in jail since October 1794, and by the time of this advertisement, is only days away from possible freedom. Unlike most other similar ads, in which the jailors warn that the held suspected fugitives would be sold back into bondage to pay jail costs, Jailor Joseph Hews is prepared to set Isaac free upon payment of his fees. This suggests that Isaac either has the means to pay his fees, or has other resources in the area: friends, or a possible employer.

Source: Gazette of the United States (Philadelphia), 08 January, 1795, page 1.

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

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