Kitty & Harriet v. Nehemiah Hicks & Susanna Bacon. Answer of Nehemiah Hicks


The return of Nehemiah Hicks to this writ of Habeas Corpus issued from the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia for Washington County directed to him & Susanna Bacon

The said Nehemiah alleges that he is an inhabitant & citizen of the County & Town of Alexandria in the District aforesaid & has resided there many years. That on the 27th day of November in the year 1827 one MacKensey Tallbert by his Bill of Sale for the consideration therein [illegible] did grant bargain & sell & then & there deliver to Betsey Hicks & Henry Hicks of the same Town the wife & child of the said Nehemiah, a negro slave girl named Harriet, the slave of him the said MacKensey Talbert, being as he supposes & believes the same negro named in the said Writ of Habeas Corpus & called Harriet That the said Betsey & Henry Hicks has ever since held, & now holds the said negro girl Harriet, as her & his slave for life at the Town & County of Alexandria under the said deed of the said MacKensey, and the said Nehemiah verily believes that the said negro Harriet is bona fide the property of the said Betsey & Harriet Henry

The said Nehemiah acting & speaking in behalf of himself his said Wife & Child says, he is advised that their right of property, in the said negro Harriet as a slave for life, cannot be affected in any manner by any trial, Judgment, or decision of your Honorable Court, in any case wherein they were not summoned or did not appear as parties until to contest any claim or to defend their right, to the said slave, & cannot be tried either under a pretext of a claim to freedom by the said slave or otherwise, except according to Laws of the County of Alexandria & more especially that a right of property cannot be tried under a writ of habeas corpus. He therefor in behalf of himself, his said Wife & Child doth except to this   Jurisdiction of the Court in the matter aforesaid.

N Hicks

Washington County: District of Columbia
On this 28th day of June in the year 1832, came Nehemiah Hicks in Open Court & made oath on the Holy Evangely of Almighty God that the matters in the aforegoing return stated are true to the best of his knowledge & belief

Test. Wm Brent Clk

fd 28 June 1832