Petition #21384139


Samuel and Charlotte Percival and their children seek the court’s aid in determining the ownership of three slaves. Prior to her 1808 marriage, the late Caroline Herbemont placed her “lands and slaves” in a trust estate for herself. By a marriage settlement, she was to retain use of the property during her lifetime, and at her death, it was to go to her husband, Nicholas Herbemont. However, the contract also allowed Caroline to dispose of any of the property, including a slave named “Beda and her issue.” In 1814, Caroline gave Beda’s child Betty to the petitioners as a gift. The Percivals retained Betty for two years until they moved to Charleston, at which time, they returned her to Caroline, in order “to gratify the feelings of the father of the said girl.” Caroline died in 1836, and by her will, she left Betty and her two daughters in trust to the petitioners. Caroline’s husband died in 1838, and his administrator, Alexander Herbemont, took the slaves into his possession as part of the estate. He and the Percivals agreed that if they “could not settle the right and title to the said slaves ... the same should be determined by this Honorable Court.” Herbemont, however, has broken this agreement and has “commenced an action of trover for the said slaves.” The petitioners pray that Herbemont be enjoined in his suit and that the rightful title to said slaves be determined by the court.

Result: Partially granted.

23 people are documented within petition 21384139

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Citation information

Repository: South Carolina Department of Archives and History, Columbia, South Carolina