New York Times, “Shocking Murder by a Female Slave,” December 16, 1857

    Source citation
    “Shocking Murder by a Female Slave,” New York Times,  December 16, 1857, p. 5: 3.
    Original source
    Washington (DC) Star
    Newspaper: Publication
    New York Times
    Newspaper: Headline
    Shocking Murder by a Female Slave
    Newspaper: Page(s)
    Newspaper: Column
    Date Certainty
    Wes McCoy, Dickinson College
    Transcription date
    The following text is presented here in complete form, as true to the original written document as possible. Spelling and other typographical errors have been preserved as in the original.

    Shocking Murder by a Female Slave

    From the Washington Star of Monday evening.

    Yesterday afternoon, about 4 P. M., a most shocking murder was committed upon the body of the wife of BASIL HALL, residing in Alexandria County, Va., about five miles from this city. According to her deposition, her husband was walking over his farm, and the rest o the whites of the family were at church, when a slave women named Jenny – the property of HALL – put an armful of dry plank on the fire, which Mrs. HALL ordered her to take off. She did so, and but quickly put it on again. Mrs. HALL again ordered her to take it off. The negress then seized her, and forcing her head down between her (the assailant’s) legs, backed her into the fire. Three times, according to Mrs. HALL’S deposition, she managed to break loose from the fiend, who as often seized her and placed her back into the fire. On the last occasion her screams brought the others of the family negroes and her husband to the rescue. Mrs. HALL died last night at midnight. The murderess, before committing her dreadful crime, took the precaution to send a small negro girl, who was in the room, to the spring for water. The negress, who has of course been committed to jail, denies the crime, alleging that her mistress fell into the fire. It is most fortunate for the ends of justice that Mrs. HALL survived sufficiently long to make an ante-mortem deposition. HALL tried to shoot the woman ere she was conveyed to prison, but was prevented from accomplishing his object. He and his family were considered by respectable persons in the neighborhood as being hard on servants; and not very long since he had a portion of some of his farm buildings burned by some of his own servants.

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