Sinah v. Edwin Harris. Petition for Writ of Habeas Corpus


District of Columbia
County of Alexandria

Complaint having been made to me a Justice of the Peace for the County aforesaid, by Sinah a Black Woman. That she and her five Children with her are ilegally held in bondage, that they are intitled to their freedom by the last will and testament of their former master Thomas Crippen. and that they were brought to this place in the Schooner         John Allen Master and claimed by Colo       Harris, who is about removing them at a great distance from their former residence, and thereby put it out of their power to obtain their rights, prays the protection of the Law of this district, untill Court when she may in her behalf and in behalf of her Children pray the Court for permission to sue for freedom.

These are therefore to Command you to summon the said Colo       Harris and John Allen to appear before me, and bring the said negro Woman, Sinah and her five Children say Isaac Letty, Peter, John and Sarah, before me to be disposed of According to Law

Given under my hand & seal this 25 Octo. 1817
Jacob Hoffman (S)

To any Constable of the County



Colo Harris not appearing and John Allen making no Claim to the negroes. Elijah Chenault will take them into possession until further disposed of
Jacob Hoffman
Octo. 25th 1817

Capt. Campbell will be so good as to receive Sinah and her five Children.
Jacob Hoffman

Executed and the within [illegible] people and Captain John Allen Present
Capt Harris not Found
Elijah Chenault
October 25th 1817