as prisoners, and conveyed thence in wagons and carriages, previously provided for that purpose.
The undersigned and his son, about [left blank] years of age were confined in the Guard House of the Harper's Ferry Armory by this party until the morning of the 18th of October, when he with his fellow prisoners was rescued and freed by the Marine Corps of the U. States, under command of Colonel Robert E Lee, U. S. Army. Your Petitioner represents further, that his slaves were compelled, upon peril of their lives, which were threatened in case of refusal, to arm themselves with Pikes, a most dangerous and deadly weapon, to be used by them for defence in a contemplated battle, or to take prisoners a kill those who attacked them in the furtherance of the views of their leader, Brown. It is but justice to the memory of these slaves that your Petitioner should [rail?] expectantly and without reserve, that he does not believe, that were influenced in this matter, other than by bodily fear, and compulsion. After the night of the 16th October, yr. petitioner did not see his slaves, until he was released by the Marine Corps, of the 18th of the same month. The slave, Ben, as yr. petitioner has been since informed by numerous gentlemen of great credibility, was posted under the circumstances of fear & threatening above named at the Rifle Factory ground of the Armory with such arms as are spoken of, under the surveillance of the party, but during the afternoon of the 17th October, he with one of the insurgents, was taken by the people of Harper's Ferry, after much exposure, was sent without any charge of crime against him, to Jail in Charlestown, in which, he was immediately taken sick and died. Ben, was a young man of about 20 years of age unusually healthy, as will appear from the statements herewith. The ver best medical attendance was a the instance of your petitioner given to him, and at his cost, notwithstanding which he died, as your petitioner is informed and believes, from sheer fright and and over excited nervousness, resulting from his exposure. Yr. Petitioner thinks he is justified in this, by the statements of the Physicians, enclosed herewith, which he prays may be taken as part of his petition. Your petitioner, under these circumstances, prays that the value of Ben may be paid to him, who by reason of this raid and rebellion against the sovereignty of the state, was rendered helpless and finally lost his life. Your petitioner has been deprived of his property by this thing and he confidently looks for remuneration from the state, therefor. His other slave, Ary, the mother of Ben, aged about 43 years, was sent by your petitioner to nurse an attend him, in jail, where she remained until his death, which occurred on the 31st October, then returning to the residence of your petitioner, she too died. The cause of her sickness and death, as yr. petitioner alledges, was alone referable to the intense distress and anguish of mind, consequent upon the capture and abduction of her children and the sudden death of Ben. And this is fully explained by the certificate of Doct. George B Stephenson, the attendant Physician enclosed herewith. Your petitioner would add further, that since the outbreak before referred to, at least six of his slaves, have been under the charge of a Physician