Twenty-two citizens of Rockingham County seek compensation for Abner Webster, the owner of three slaves who were "convicted of the murder of Wm G. Comer which said Negroes were executed." They argue that "when the publick good requires the property of any Individual it is justice that the publick Should pay to such individuals a fair price for the property so used by the publick." They therefore pray that a law be passed "that the owner of slaves shall receive pay for such slaves as may be executed." The petitioners point out that it was Webster himself who "used every exertion after the murder had been commited to arest and bring his said negroes to justice and that without his aid so nobly manifested it would have bin difficult to have arested them the said negroes and as such we your petitioners respectfully request your body to remunerate him."
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Repository: North Carolina Department of Archives and History, Raleigh, North Carolina