On 3 May 1830, Lucy and Rebecca Carlton, together with their son and brother, the late Isaac S. Carleton, mortgaged a nineteen-year-old slave named Lorenzo to Hardy Johnson to secure the payment of four hundred dollars. Johnson shortly thereafter "transferred said mortgage and the possession of said slave to one James W. Davis." According to an agreement made with Davis, the petitioners could redeem the slave at any time provided that "he was not taken out of a growing crop." In May of 1832 and again in February 1834, the petitioners attempted to pay Davis and reclaim possession of the slave. Both times, Davis refused to accept their money and refused to return the slave, "alledging that he would rather pay the costs of a suit than ... part with the possession of said slave," whose hire, the petitioners claim, "was worth one hundred and twenty dollars a year." The petitioners seek restoration of the slave and compensation in the amount of the value of his hire.
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Repository: Shelby County Archives, Columbiana, Alabama