Shew cause why he keepeth her in a state of slavery.

by Lisa Y. Henderson

State of North Carolina, Edgcombe Countye   }  To the Sheriff of sd. County greeting you are hereby commanded that you Summon James Williams if to be found in your Bailiwic to make his Personal Appearance at the next county court of pleas &c., to be held for the County of Edgcombe afores’d on the first monday in May next then and there to shew Cause why he keepeth in a State of Slavery, Sarah Rogers, who by her petition to the Justices of the county court afores’d allegeth that she is a free woman And have you then there this Writ — Witness Edward Hall Clerk afs’d court the 7th Day of Feby. 1785.  Edward Hale Clk.

Slave Records, Edgecombe County Records, North Carolina State Archives.