National Archive Microfilm Publications Microcopy No. 434

Habeas Corpus Case Records of the United States Circuit Court for the District of Columbia 1820 – 1863


Roll 1 – 1820 – 1843


Habeas Corpus for Cease alias Teresa Russel


To the Hon. the Judges of the Circuit Court of the U. States for Washington, D. C.

The petition of Cease alias Teresa Russel of Washington County in the District of Columbia, respectfully represents that upon the 16 Nov. 1816 Nathan Hoskinson or Hoskins of Montgomery County in the State of Maryland manumitted your petitioner by an act made in the office of the clerk of said County and gave her freedom and also freedom to all her children and increase as they shall arrive at the age of twenty-five years and your petitioner represents that in defiance of said act of emancipation and in violation of the laws as such case made and provided, a certain Thomas Hoskinson or Hoskins of Washington County aforesaid has illegally seized her infant child aged about 10 years and named Evelina and has sold her to some one whose name is unknown to your petitioner as a slave for life and to be carried to not only (illegible) the said District, but (illegible) the State of Maryland and that her said child is now confined at the house of Washington Robey in said County and that your petitioner is advised by counsel learned in the law that such sale and confinement is illegal and oppressive and being so advised she swears that her said child is by the law entitled to her immediate freedom by the illegal conduct of the said Thomas in the (illegible) . . . To the said Nathan if the said Nathan has authorized said act and if not that the said Evelina cannot be removed or sold as a slave for life or removed from out of the state of Maryland and that the attempt to do it is in violation of her rights and therefore illegal and oppressive and that she is now illegally and oppressively detained in confinement by the said Thos. Hoskinson or Hoskins, Washington Robey and others unknown.

Your petitioner therefore prays your Hon. to grant her the benefit of the U. States writ of Habeas Corpus for her said child Evelina, directed to the said Hoskinson or Hoskins, Robey & others commanding them to produce before your Honors the body of the said Evelina together with the cause of her detention and in the meantime, your petitioner prays your Honor to grant an order directed to the Marshall for the District of Columbia commanding him to take into his possession her said child for safe keeping as she has reason to believe that her said child will be removed from the jurisdiction of this court and beyond its control the (illegible) that the said parties know of this proceeding. She also prays for all and every relief your Honor can give in the premises – and as in duty bound will pray.

Teresa (X) Russel

Sworn to and subscribed to before me a Justice of the Peace in the County of Washington in the District of Columbia.
B. K. Mossele J. P.

Your Petitioner is informed (?) the filing of this petition that the said child is in the possession of certain persons by name of O’Neil or Neal, Washington County who bought said child from Thos. Hoskinson or Hoskins as a slave for life.

District of Columbia to wit

The United States of America to Thomas Hoskinson & Joseph Neale greeting

You are hereby commanded to have the body of Negro Evelina an infant aged about ten years, returned in your custody or in the custody of one of you, or of some other person for your use, as it is said, together with the cause of her capture and detention, before the Circuit Court of the District of Columbia, now setting in and for the County of Washington to do, receive and submit to whatever the said Court may order in the premises. Hereof fail not at your peril. Witness the Hon. Wm. Cranch, Chief Judge of the said Court the 19th day of March 1838.

Wm. Brent, Clk.

In obedience to the within writ, I respectfully return that the negar girl Evelina is now in Court and that she was purchased for use bonafide by Ansel Rowley of a certain Thomas Hoskinson as a slave for life and that she was paid for by me as such and I did not when the said girl was so bought for me know or suppose that she had any claim to her freedom and was ignorant of any such claims until the within writ was served on me. Given under my hand this 20th day of March 1834.

Joseph W. Neal

Nathan Hoskinson


Negro Cease & Others

Manumission dated 16 Nov. 1816, the said Negro Cease & her increase to be free upon their and each of their arrival at the age of twenty five years.

B. Lelley, M.

From the above it would seem that the bearer Cease or Treasy was manumitted as above & her issue also at the age of twenty five years. If a copy of the manumission should be necessary it will be forwarded at your request. I have not time to copy it at present as our court is in session.

Wm. Chappell

At the request of Nathan Hoskinson the following Manumission was recorded on the 16th day of Nov. 1816 to wit:

To all whom it may concern be it known that I Nathan Hoskinson of Montgomery County in the state of Maryland for divers good causes and considerations me thereunto moving have released from slavery, manumitted and set free, and by these presents do hereby release from slavery, manumit and set free my Negro slaves Cease about fourteen years old the first day of January last past, Garrison about eight years old the first day of January last past and Rezin about four years old the first day of January last past, in manner and form following, that is to say, upon their and each of their arrival at the full age of twenty five years, and the said Nathan Hoskinson do hereby declare each and every of the above named Negro slaves and the issue or increase of the above named Negro Cease, upon their and each of their arrival at the full age of twenty five years as aforesaid, to be thenceforth released from slavery, liberated, manumitted and discharged from all manner of servitude or service to me, my heirs, executors, administrators or assigns forever.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 16th day of November in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixteen.

Nathan Hoskinson

Signed, sealed and delivered in presence of witness —-
James B. Higgins
Patrick Orme

Maryland, Montgomery County to wit:

On this 16th day of November eighteen hundred and sixteen personally appears Nathan Hoskinson party to the within instrument of writing before me the subscriber a Justice of the Peace of the County and State aforesaid and acknowledges the same to be his act and deed for the purposes within mentioned, and the Negro slave within named to be henceforth manumitted and discharged from all service to him or to any claiming under him according to the true intent and meaning of the within instrument of writing and the act of assembly in such cases made and provided.

Acknowledged before
Henry Howard of Md.

Maryland, Montgomery County
I do hereby certify that the aforegoing copy manumission is truly taken and copied from the original on file and recorded in my office.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto subscribed my name and affixed the public seal of said County Court this twentieth day of March eighteen hundred & thirty four.
Brice Lelly, M. of Montgomery County Court

Hab. Corp. for Negro Evelina
The evidence in this case was considered by the court on the 21st March 1834 & thereupon it was ordered that the girl Evelina therein mentioned be discharged.