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To the Honorable John N. Tyler Judge of the Circuit Court of Fauquier County--
Humbly complaining your petitioner Lavinia Napper a free negroo resident in the County of Fauquier showeth to your honor that by the last will and testement of the late Giles Fitzhugh of the said County she was liberated from slavery, and has since been duly registered as a Free negro by the Clerk of the County Court of the said County as will appear by reference to a copy of her register herewith filed as an exhibit; & marked (a) - Your petitioner further represents, that she is informed, that by the Laws of Virginia she cannot be allowed to remain as a Free negro within the limits of that state, but that the gift of freedom is coupled with the condition of removal beyond its limits - Your petitioner avers, that she was born and raised in this county, that all of her relatives and friends reside here, that if compelled to leave the state she goes amongst strangers who have no interest in her, and that in view of these facts, she deliberately prefers slavery in Virginia to freedom out of it-- Your petitioner is informed that the Legislature of Virginia has passed an act, allowing all persons in her situation, to voluntarily return to slavery, and to choose a master -- Your petitioner desires to avail herself of this privilege, and humbly petitions this court for relief--She desires to become the slave of Edwin Smith of the said county--Your petitioner represents, that her proposed master has married a member of the family to which she formerly belonged. That she has known him since childhood, and has frequently been in his service, and feels assured that he will be a kind master to her-- Your petitioner avers that she is over eighteen years