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Citizens: Petition, Pendleton County

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To the Legislature of Virginia We your petitioners citizens of the County of Pendleton do most respectfully beg leave to represent to your honourable body, that Ellen, a woman of colour formerly the property of Thomas Kinkead dec [deceased], by the last will and testament of said Kinkead, is entitled to her freedom, at the expiration of one year from his death; and consequently according to existing laws will not be permitted to remain within the limits of state, but being desirous of so doing, having a husband who is a slave, and having herself attained her 44th year, we in her behalf do most fervently pray that leave may be given her to remain. Your petitioners know in whose behalf they speak; most of us having seen the undivided attention paid by her to her master while in a prolonged bed of sickness, anticipating his wants, and passing many a sleepless night by his bed side. There being, for several of the last years of her master, no white female about the house, the domestic duties of the household fell upon her; and we do most willingly bear testimony that we have never seen those duties performed in so exemplary a manner, by any one acting in the capacity of a servant, and we know her to be industrious and honest. Her master Thomas Kinkead, was a revolutionary soldier and soon after quitting the service received a wound in the abdomen by a fall from a horse which required careful dressing for several of the last years of his life; this was done by Ellen, and no one else, who was entrusted with the Pocket Book, Keys and all the valuables of her master, and to show the estimate he put upon her worth, and valuable services rendered, his will ensures her freedom, and permits her to remove to another state, or remain not for