We believe her to be a worthy woman.

by Lisa Y. Henderson

To the General Assembly of North Carolina

The undersigned, Respectfully Petition, the Legislature, to pass an act, in favour of Sucky Borden (a woman of color) vesting in her, all the rights and privileges, of a free woman.  Your petitioners have long known said Suckey, and believe her to be a worthy woman, who will duly appreciate all her privileges — and your Petitioners will Ever pray &c

Wm. H. Washington, Richard Washington, N. Washington, Jno. Wright, Raiford Hooks, M.A. Borden, John Everitt, John C. Slocumb, Wton Thompson, W.C. Bryan, Woodard Howell, Wm, Hollowell, Josiah Howell, C. Hooks, Wm. Robinson, Jere. A. Green, Jno. N. Andrews, O. Coor, Thomas B. Cox, Joseph E. Kennedy, John W. Davis, Chelby Langston, Hinton J. Best, A.H. Langston

Records of Slaves of Free Persons of Color, Wayen County Miscellaneous Records, North Carolina State Archives.

[Sidenote: The petition was granted: Susan Bordan, age 70, black, is listed in the 1860 federal population census of Goldsboro, Wayne County.  She worked as a baker and reported owning $500 real property and $100 personal property, placing her among the wealthiest free people of color in the county.  She shared her household with 60 year-old mulatto “sewer,” Angia Capps, and 7 year-old mulatto Catharine Carroll.  Borden’s petitioners were a collection of Wayne County’s most solid citizens — planters, a hotel proprietor, the local newspaper editor, two clerks of court, the sheriff and a Methodist clergyman.  Nearly all were slaveowners. — LYH]