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Sheppard, Pharoh (Pharaoh): Petition, Richmond City

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To the Hon'ble Speaker and members of the general assembly of Virginia. The petition of Pharoh Sheppard (a free negro) humbly complaining sheweth unto your Hon'ble body. That about eight or ten years ago your petitioner was informed of a plan being laid by the slaves of this Commonwealth particularly by those of the City of Richmond and its vicinity. That an attempt would be made by them on a certain night with force & arms whose objects were to destroy the white people as they went, take possession of their property and the said City arms ammunition &c &c and thereby obtain liberty. Your petitioner from motives truly gratifying to himself and all the good people in and about the said City, made known to your petitioner's master and others of the night this plan was to be carried into effect, whereby the lives of many worthy Citizens of this Commonwealth were saved. The legislature of Virginia soon after took into consideration your petitioner and from Hon'ble motives gave him his freedom, which yr [your] petitioner begs leave now to offer his greatfull acknowledgment