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MacPherson, Christopher: Petition, Richmond City

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Outlines of the Life of Christopher MacPherson - born in Louisa Co. Virginia as well as can be recollected 1770 I was sent to school in Goochland near the Courthouse - remained 1 3/4 years. 1772 went behind the Counter in the Elk Horn Store at Petersburg. 1775 Commerce Stop'd. at the end of the year retired from the Store. 1776 & 7 Schooling children &c. 1778 to 1781. Clerk for the Commercial Agent for this State during this time & at the Seige of York Town, was also Clerk for one of the Commissary Gen'l and otherwise rendered [essential?] services for the Continental Army } d.s.c. 1782 & 3 Clerk for David Ross Esquire 1784 Principal Storekeeper for D. Ross Esq. till the end of the year 1787 when the Store was closed, whilst 8 to 10 white Gentlemen were under my directions. (I mustered in this time (which I dislike) - d.s.c. 1788 to 1799 was principal clerk to D Ross Esq whilst 2 to 6 white Gent'n were under me. (in Summer 99 I quitted Mr. Ross. Twas I think in 1797 that a Riot was passing in the road by my door near Columbia, of a Number of Slaves. I turned out with my sword, in order to suppress it without expecting any help. Major John Quarle's Certificate goes to prove that with my help, mischief was prevented } d.s.c. 1799 (winter) Enrolled for Congress 'till Spring 1800. d.s.c. 1800 (Spring) Mr Jefferson by letter introduced me to Mr. Maddison. I sat at Table Even'g & morn'g with McM. his Lady & company & enjoyed a full share of the Convers'n. } d.s.c. 1800 Clerk for Mr. W. W. Hening - investigating British Claims &c. d.s.c. 1800 Nominated by Mr. James Ross brother to D'd Ross Esq. in his principal Exor by Will - as per probate obtained from the Court of Fluvanna County } d.s.c. 1800 Clerk in the Office of the High Court of Chancery - d.s.c. 1801 Clerk for Col'o Carrington as Supervisor & in the Office of the H C Chancery - d.s.c. 1802 Clerk in H.C.C'y and for others - and I then Invented an Index for the Court docket of the H.C.Cy - which Index, 'twas said by several Att'or at the Bar expedited the business every Session to about three days more business, as than would have been done without it - querie - what did this save to the Public at large? } d.s.c. 1802 I was witness for a man of color - when my oath was taken by the Jury in the District Court, in preference to the opposite oaths of two white witnesses } d.s.c. 1803 to 1810 inclusive, Clerk for all the principal Offices under both, the General & State Governments and for Judges, Lawyers, Merchants &c. &c. &c. - } d.s.c I have paid voluntarily out of my own Pocket near one hundred dollars towards improving the two Streets on which I live - and I have given Thirty Dollars as a donation towards building a Seminary of Learning in the Suburbs of this City. } d.s.c. Colour is nothing - Worth is all, with liberal minds. Throughout the whole course of my life, I have been considered by my numerous white acquaintance as one of their number - and they have uniformly treated me as such } d.s.c. I can prove all the above, by very many substantial witnesses. After all there testimonials of my character, and what has been unthinkingly done by the Common Hall - I leave the Honorable the General Assembly to Judge - that if they have [inforence?] Laws overlooked my Rights, or never knew of the services I have rendered my Country - whether - it would not now be an act of Justice towards me, to pass a Special Law - granting me the rights & previledges [privileges] which may appear to them - that I merit. Christ: McPherson Richmond 23d December 10