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Templeman, Samuel: Petition, Westmoreland County

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The the honorable the Speaker House of Delegates of the Commonwealth of Virginia, your petitioner, Samuel Templeman, sheweth: That William Hutt by hilast [his last] will & testament, bearing date the [blank] day of [blank month and year] appointed your petitioner his exector [executor], who qualified as such in the county court of Westmoreland, on the [blank] day of [blank month and year]: but the testator died considerably indebted, and that the principal part of his personal estate consisted in negroes, from the sale of which negroes alone did your petioner [petitioner] expect ever to satisfy the just demands of the creditors of the deceased: that Joe, a young, large, and likey negro man, was one of the slaves belonging to the said Hutt's estate, whom, your petitioner believes, he might have sold for at least £100: that this negro had been a runaway for some time previous to the orders form the executive of this commonwealth dated the [blank] day of December last, which issued in consequence of the alarming intelligence, that, on the day preceding Christmas, a massacre of ourselves & of those most dear to us was intended by, the negroes: that, on the receipt of this intelligence & these orders the citizens of Westmoreland armed, as one man, in defence of themselves & the community, & with promptness obeyed the commands of their respective officers; which were, to search every negro cabin, & apprehend such negroes & mulattoes as were found travelling, or from home, particularly in the night, & to put to death such as resisted, or ran & could not otherwise be stopped: that on the evening of the 24th of December, orders were first given for a general patrol, and that