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"North Carolina Slave, Union Widow, Liberian Emigrant:..." Topic


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311 hits since 2 Feb 2017
©1994-2017 Bill Armintrout
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Tango01 Supporting Member of TMP02 Feb 2017 11:09 a.m. PST

…The Journey of Nancy Askie.

"The value of the pension files for unearthing social history relating to former slaves was highlighted by Elizabeth A. Regosin and Donald R. Shaffer in their excellent 2008 work, Voices of Emancipation: Understanding Slavery, the Civil War and Reconstruction through the U.S. Pension Bureau Files. The case of Nancy Askie offers a fine example of how the files can be used to assist in piecing together the story of one family of former slaves.

Prior to the Civil War, Nancy was most likely a slave in the ownership of Andrew Jackson Askew, a physician and farmer in Bertie County, North Carolina. Askew appears to have been active in Democrat Party circles; a newspaper report from 1839 records an Andrew J. Askew as Secretary at a meeting of the Democratic Republicans of Hertford County, where those assembled passed a number of resolutions in support of the re-election of President Martin Van Buren. One of their stated reasons for supporting Van Buren was "because he is opposed to the agitation of the slave question, and has given a pledge to veto any bill abolishing slavery in the District of Columbia." Askew was also involved in religious activities, and was Secretary of the Chowan Bible Society in 1845. The slave owner is recorded as a 33-year-old physician on the 1850 Federal Census for Bertie County, with real estate valued at $4,000. USD He lived there with his wife, four young children and two other whites. The latter included 23-year-old George Askew, who was an Overseer of the farm, which according to the 1850 Slave Schedules contained 37 slaves. As with all the Slave Schedules, no names were provided. By the time of the 1860 Census Andrew J. Askew's family had expanded, and he was recorded as having real estate valued at $3,500 USD and a personal estate of $41,530. USD He had also increased his slave ownership, now counting 44 slaves among his property…"
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