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Boxley Slave Revolt

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Boxley Slave Revolt




Slave Insurrection “A rumor, of a most alarming nature, has for some days past agitated the public mind in the neighboring counties”, stated a notice in the March 2, 1816 Richmond Enquirer. The disturbance was the trials then underway in Louisa and Spotsylvania of the failed slave insurrection incited by white storekeeper George Boxley among the slaves on several plantations along both sides of the North Anna River. His small general store allowed him contact with those he sought to free who came to him to deal in goods and produce. On Sunday, February 25, 1816, Boxley was in Louisa County rounding up his followers starting with Mack and Ned, slaves of his brother Joseph Boxley at Great House. They moved to William Mansfield’s plantation on Christopher Run where a slave named Ned joined them. In all, about a dozen slaves followed him in the plot to seize arms and ammunition in Fredericksburg and flee north. Fear gripped many of those he thought would join him at the last minute and his small band deserted him prompting Boxley to surrender himself to authorities on Tuesday morning. Boxley escaped from jail and fled north to safety. March 5th a court was convened in Louisa and six of the slaves who joined his insurrection were found guilty and sentenced to be hanged on March 29th: Mack and Ned, Joseph Boxley’s slaves; Matt and Kit, Francis Jerdone’s; Tom, Sarah Gardner’s; and Tompkin, Samuel Coles. Read the Court record here.


Louisa County Historical Society


Old Home Places of Louisa County Revisited


Louisa County Historical Society