1854 Division of the Enslaved: Powell, Greensville County, Virginia

If you have Powell family connections in Greensville County, Virginia, then you may be interested in reviewing the following names of the enslaved who, in 1854, were divided among Powell family members, according to the last will and testament of William H. Powell.

If you do not have Greensville County, Virginia Powell family connections, then you still may wish to review these name of affected and enslaved persons, who where parceled out in bondage, with the understanding that this was par for the course, a true e pluribus unum.

Images are courtesy of FamilySearch.org:

Sept Term 1854…”We have this day divided the slaves and their increase, received by Martha C. Powell, widow of Wm. H. Powell, under the will of said Wm. H. Powell.”

Valuation of Negroes, (viz)

Smith 800—Sam 900—Ben 1000—Anderson 1100—Wyatt 800—Edmond 1200—Littleton 1000—Arthur 800—Randal 250—Lewis 350—Juliann + child Lewis 200—Ann Eliza 900—Betsey 200—Polly 400—George 700—Ellick 500—-Peggy + child Kinchen 600—Patty 650—John 500—Edmond 150—-Nelly 150—-Sylvia 500—-Doctor 600—-Mary 100—Fanny + child Maria 1000—Harriet 50—-Caroline + child Mary Jane 1000—-Candace + child Coy 900—Louise 400—Amy 250—Celia + child Bolling 1000—Grief 450–David 300—Mary 50—Mason + child Julia 600—Georgianna 800—Jane 700—Eliza 300—Margaret 250—Bob 200—Amanda + child Dolley 800—Billy 400—Eveline 650—Nancy 600—Rebecca 550—Charles 850—Stanfield 275—-Alfred 775—Martha 450—Lizzy 400—Robert 300—-Sally 900—Mourning 750—-Easter 850—–Lucy 400—Emanuel 250—-Dick 150—–Hannah + child infant and without name 400—-making in the aggregate the sum of thirty two thousand, eight hundred and fifty dollars—-one third of which sum amounts to ten thousand, nine hundred + fifty dollars. To meet this amount, we have assigned to Martha C. Powell, selected by herself, the following negroes, viz: Randal 250—Arthur 800—Edmund 1200—Ellick 500—Littleton 1000—Juliann + child Lewis 200—Betsey 700—George 700—-Polly 400—Nelly 150—Doctor 600—Sylia 500—Peggy + child Kinchen 600—-Patty 650—–John 500—-Edmund 150—Grief 450—-Louise 400—-Celia + her child Bolling 1000—-Daniel 300-Mary 50—-amounting to eleven thousand, one hundred dollars, which exceeds her share by one hundred and fifty dollars which she is to pay to Mrs. Jane T. Orgain—The remaining two thirds, with one hundred + fifty dollars added, the excess over Martha C. Powell’s share, amount to twenty one thousand, nine hundred dollars, which we then divided as follows, the parties casting lots for their respective slaves.

Lot.No. 1.

Hannah + child (no name) 400—Emanuel 250—Lucy 400—Dick 150—Fanny +child Maria 1000—Caroline + child Mary Jane 1000—-Sam 900—Wyatt 800—Sally 900—Charles 850—Rebecca 550—Harriet 50—amounting to seven thousand, two hundred and fifty dollars, to secure from No. 2, fifty dollars; the dividend to which each is entitled being 7300. This lot was drawn by Tabitha H. Massenburg.

(They Were Her Property) book recommendation———

Lot No. 2.

Amanda + child Dolly 800—–Billy 400—Candace + child Coy 900—-Amy 250—Easter 850—Ben 1000—–Smith 800—Alfred 995—-Nancy 600—Lizzy 400—-Robert 300—-Stanfield 295—–amounting to seven thousand, three hundred + fifty dollars to pray No. 1. fifty dollars. This lot was drawn by John J. Prince.

Lot No. 3.

Mason + child Julia 600—Georgianna 800—Jane 700—Eliza 300—-Margaret 250—Bob 200—Anderson 1100—-Ann Eliza 900—-Lewis 850—Mourning 750—Eveline 650—-Martha 450—Mary 100—amounting to seven thousand one hundred + fifty dollars, to receive from Martha C. Powell one hundred + fifty dollars. This lot was drawn by Jane T. Orgain.

We have no means of ascertaining the names of the slaves received from William H. Powell by Martha C. Powell, nor of those who have died since they have been in her possession.

All of which is respectfully submitted 14th September 1854, J.B. Mallory, A. Mallory, G.G. Goodrich, Geo. Short.” The foregoing report having been returned, at the last term, and contained until the present term, and no exceptions being filed thereto, is confirmed and ordered to be recorded, and the divisions, therein mentioned, are ordered by the Court, to be valid and binding between the several parties.

Of the three lots drawn in this division of enslaved, two women were recipients: Tabitha H. Massenburg and Jane T. Orgain. The thought of women’s active engagement in the peculiar institution of slavery allows for further consideration:

They Were Her Property
White Women as Slave Owners in the American South

Could this be Bolling and Jane living in Brunswick County, Virginia in the 1870 US Census?

Bolling and Jane Powell Family in 1870

In any case, we know that there are descendants of the divided enslaved who have no idea that their ancestors endured such a trade. May this knowledge prove helpful in their search, in our search for family history.

This is our situation…

The Genealogy Situation Room

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