Enslaved Africans
Several prominent families and residents of the Puddle Dock neighborhood enslaved Africans, including:

  • Mariner, merchant, and farmer Joseph Sherburne, whose 1744 estate inventory listed one Negro man valued at 200 pounds and one Negro woman valued at 50 pounds;
  • King’s Arms (c. 1766) tavern keeper James Stoodley at the time of his death in 1779 enslaved two people, Frank and Flora, valued at 20 and 100 pounds, respectively;
  • William Pitt (c. 1766) tavern-keeper John Stavers enslaved two people: James, and Fortune, who emancipated himself as a “run-away” in 1764 when he was 16 years old;
  • Marshall Pottery (c. 1736-1749) owner Samuel Marshall enslaved three people: Adam, Mercer, and Bess;
  • Cooper Jeremiah Wheelwright (d. 1768) enslaved three people: Nero, Jane, and Cato. Wheelwright purchased Cato prior to 1752 for 200 pounds, a price equal to some houses at the time.