Hydraulic Plantation: The Path from Slavery to Freedom.

To begin our research into the African Americans who lived in the antebellum neighborhood we began with the Albemarle County Will Books which contain an inventory and appraisal of Nathaniel Burnley’s estate (March 1860) and a record of the estate sale a month later.  The inventory listed 39 enslaved men, women, and children; the purchasers of 24 of them are known from the sale record.

--Search for Thornton--

For this search we selected one man from the inventory who was not in the sale (Figure 5):

Thornton  “Boy” aged 25 valued at $1,600.


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Figure 5: Excerpt from Nathaniel Burnley's Estate Sale (March 1860).