Mariah White v. Joseph M. White. Jury Instructions


Upon the trial of this cause evidence was given to the Jury to prove that the Petitioner was the slave of the deft. a resident of Florida, and that being a member of Congress he brought the Petitioner from Florida with him to the City of Washington in the fall of 1 winter of 1828. That she remained with her Master as his slave during the session of Congress which commenced on the 1st Monday of Decr. 1828 and at the close of the session she being then far advanced in her pregnancy, she could not be carried at that time back with safety to Florida. That her master was therefore obliged to leave her and did leave her in Washington. That in th after her confinement was over, she petitioned[?] her master to permit be permitted to have hire herself out, and untill he should return to Congress in the month of December following, and her said master having been re-elected gave her permission by a written order in these words (      ).   inclosed in a letter to his agent Mr. French in these words.       and she did accordingly hire herself out until the first of the present month of Decr. and applied her hire to her own use. Her Master learning that she had a free husband in Washington, and that she wished to live with him, agreed that if he could raise $400 for him that she he should have her freedom That the money never was raised, nor any portion of it ever paid to him.

Upon this evidence the Counsel for the deft. prayd the Court to instruct the Jury that if they believed the same to be true, that they ought to find their verdict for the defendant.


(See this instruction given - in WC's note book p.372.