Date Original



This document details instructions on certifying the sale of a slave named Harriet to Mr. Charles Ritchie from Mr. William Hickman, in Hempstead County, Arkansas Territory, circa 1820s.


[Page 1] In the case of the purchase made by Mr. Charles
Ritchie of a negro woman slave named Harriet
it will be necessary to procure a certificate signed
by two or more freeholders of Hempstead County
in the Territory of Arkansas the most convenient
neighbors to Mr. Wm. C. Hickman the person from
whom the said slave was purchased by Charles Ritchie
from said Hickman designating the Name,
age, sex, and as near as possible, the size marks, and
colour of said slave, and the place where she was
purchased, designating the name, age sex and as near
as possible the size marks and colour of said slave
and the place where she was purchased, and from whom
purchased, which said certificate shall be signed by the
said freeholders, accompanied by their declaration
on oath, that they have known the said slave for
several years, and that she has not within their
knowledge been guilty, nor convicted of any crimes
but that she has a good moral character, and is not
in the habit of running away. The Foregoing certificate shall be given
and signed before the Clerk of some Court of Record
of Hempstead County, and the said Certificate
and declaration on oath of the said freeholder
shall also be accompanied by a declaration by
the said Clerk, under the seal of the Court of
which he is Clerk, that the certificate was
executed before him, that the said freeholders are
men of good character, and are not vendors
It must also be stated that the oath Required was
taken before an officer duly authorized to admi-
nister an oath, and that the persons so certifying and
declaring, are indisputable and well known freeholders
of the said County of Hempstead. It will be also [Page 2] necessary that the declaration of the said Clerk of
the said County of Hempstead, should be
accompanied by the certificate of the presiding Judge
certifying that the officer signing said declaration
is the Clerk of the Court over which he presides.
[written on side] Certificate
for slaves
for surtificate [sic]

Physical Description

Document, 2 pages, 8.5" x 14"


Selling; Slaves; Slavery; Slave trade; Certificates; Clerks

Geographical Area

Hempstead County (Ark.)




Slave Sale Certification Instructions 1820s

Resource Type



Slave Sale Certification Instructions 1820s


Arkansas State Archives

Contributing Entity

Arkansas State Archives

Recommended Citation

1820s slave sale certification instructions, Slave Sale Certification Instructions 1820s, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.


Use and reproduction of this lesson plan supplemental material for instructional purposes is allowed without prior written permission. For further information on reproducing images held by the Arkansas State Archives, please call 501-682-6900 or email at


United States History


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1820s slave sale certification instructions