Jane Webb 1682

Jane Webb, born about 1682, was called a “muletto Girle named Jane” in the Northampton County will of Henry Warren in 1693. She agreed to indenture herself for seven years to Thomas Savage in exchange for permission to marry his slave Left.

On 17 April 1711 the court bound her children Diana, Daniel and Frances to her master, and on 20 June 1716 the court bound to Savage her two “Malatto” children Ann and Elizabeth, “Born of ye body of Jane Webb ye wife of a Negro man belonging to Captain Thomas Savage” [Orders 1711-6, 225].

On 16 August 1722 Jane was called “Jane Webb, formerly Jane Williams, the daughter of a white woman,” when she petitioned the court to release her children Diana (then eighteen), Daniel and Frances from their indenture to Savage, asking the court not to adjudge her children in servitude since they were born in lawful wedlock. Savage delayed the case until 10 January 1722/3 when the court ruled that her petition was frivolous [Orders 1719-22, 185, 191; 1722-9, 11, 46; Deal, Race and Class, 466-71; Mihalyka, Loose Papers II:41-2].

She sued Benjamin Barth for 3-1/2 yards of Virginia linen in November 1723 [Mihalyka, Loose Papers II:60].

Jane was head of her own Northampton County household in 1724, called Jane Webb in one list and “Jane Left mulatto” in the list of tobacco planters.

In February 1724/5 the court dismissed her petition for release of her daughter Diana from servitude, but it released her two months later when Diana produced evidence from the parish register that she was twenty-one.

In February 1725/6 Savage petitioned the court to have her children Lisha and Abimeleck bound to him because their mother “has no visible means of support” [Mihalyka, Loose Papers II:125].

She brought a suit in chancery against Savage maintaining that as part of her original indenture he had agreed to free her husband Left and had agreed not to make any claim on her children born after her servitude was completed. And she said that Savage had taken the written indenture and would not allow her to see it [Mihalyka, Loose Papers II:147]. On 12 July 1726 two of Savage’s neighbors, Colonel George Harmonson and Mrs. Margaret Forse, testified that they had seen an indenture by which Jane agreed to serve Savage seven years and that any children born in the lifetime of her husband Left should serve Savage in exchange for his permission to allow her to marry his slave Left. Savage failed to produce the indenture in court, but testified that he had never agreed to free her husband Left. When asked for what term the children were to serve him by the indenture, he answered that he could not say. His witnesses Colonel Harmonson and Philip Jacob testified that they had heard Jane declare, “if all Negros had as good a heart as she had they would all be Free,” for which she received ten lashes. The case was discontinued on 14 December 1726 while the court considered whether to allow the evidence of “Free Negros.” Jane failed to make her court appearance shortly after the court decided not to allow her evidence, and the case was dismissed on 11 July 1727 [Orders 1722-32, 247, 248, 258, 260, 265, 278, 287, 297].

She was called Jane Webb, alias Left, in September 1727 when she petitioned to have her name added to the list of tithables. Jane was head of a household with son Daniel and daughter Dinah in 1728, and Jane was in the household of her daughter Dinah Manly in 1730 and 1731.

Dinah left the county before 1735, and Jane was tithable as Jeane Webb in Thomas Savage’s household in 1737 [Bell, Northampton County Tithables, 53, 67, 102, 149, 167, 206, 214, 221, 265, 284].

On 14 June 1732 she informed the court that Sophia Savage had not listed her overseer as a tithable and that Major James Forse had not listed her daughter Elizabeth as a tithable, but the court dismissed her evidence as insufficient and did not pay her the usual informer’s fee [Orders 1732-42, 6]. On 12 August 1740 the court excused her from paying taxes because of her old age [Orders 1732-42, 409].

She, called Jane Left, died before November 1764 when the vestry of Hungar’s Parish paid Abemileck Webb for burying her [Hungar’s Parish Record 1758-82, 19].

Jane and Left’s children were:
i. Dinah, born 14 February 1703/4, eighteen years old in 1722 when her mother petitioned the court for her release from indenture. When she was twenty-one years old, Dinah petitioned the court herself with a note from the parish certifying her birth date, and the court released her on 14 April 1725 [Orders 1722-9, 17, 46, 179; Mihalyka, Loose Papers II:100]. She married Gabriel Manly and was called Dinah Manly on 1 September 1727 when she petitioned to have her name added to the list of tithables [Orders 1722-9, 206].
ii. Daniel, born 25 August 1706.
iii. Frances, born 14 January 1708/9 [Mihalyka, Loose Papers II:100].
iv. Ann, born about 1711, “a malatto…Born of ye body of Jane Webb ye wife of a Negro man,” was bound to Thomas Savage on 20 June 1716. She had four more years to serve when she was listed in the inventory of estate of Thomas Savage who died in 1728 [Orders 1711-16, 255; DW 1725-33, 229-30]. On 9 May 1732 she was presented for bastard bearing and the same day petitioned the court against Sophia Savage who was detaining her children Daniel and Abraham in servitude on the pretense that Ann owed her three years of service for having three bastard children during her servitude. The court ordered that she be set free and ordered Mrs. Savage to deliver her clothes and bedding to her [Orders 1729-32, 143-5; 1732-42, 7, 8, 14]. On 12 February 1733/4 she was called “Nanny Week, late Nanny Webb,” when the court bound out her three-year-old “free Negroe” son Daniel to William Scott with her consent [Orders 1732-42, 92]. She and her descendants were called Weeks thereafter. See the Weeks history.
v. Elizabeth, born about 1713.
vi. Lisha/ Elishe, born about 1716, bound to Thomas Savage on 17 July 1726 [Orders 1722-9, 247]. She had nine more years to serve when she was listed in the inventory of the estate of Thomas Savage who died in 1728 [DW 1725-33, 229-30]. She was presented by the grand jury on 12 March 1733/4 for having a bastard child which she charged to William Beckett [Orders 1732-42, 97, 103, 107].
vii. Abimileck, born about 1720.

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