Suit for freedom in the
St. Louis Circuit CourtCircuit Court.
of February 1848
Now at this day appear Elsa ElizaEliza
Mitchell James Mitchell & Blair Mitchellunder
twenty one years of age by Lewis Burwell
next friend who claim to be the owners of the said mulatto woman Elsa HicksElsa Hicks
and move the court, to dismiss this suit for the
1st There is no lawful Defendant to the cause.
2nd - Said suit was instituted and is prosecuted
by collusion between said Plaintiff and De-
fendant for the purpose of enabling said
petitionerdefendant to acquire an apparent right
to freedom to the annoyance & prejudice of
the real owners.
3. Said McSherryMcSherry never claimed saidslave
Plaintiff to be his slave never set up any pre-
tension of title to her, never withheld her
liberty from her, but her residence with him was
free and voluntary, and he has been selected
as a sham defendant, in order that judg-
ment of liberation might be obtained as
aganist him, without any serious resistance.
4.Before, at and since the institution of
said suit said McSherryMcSherry against the will of
the owners of said Plaintiff has entertained
and harbored her, has encouraged her in re-
maining as a fugitive, has at all times disclaim-
ed any claim of title to or ownership of said
plaintiff, and expressed his opinion that she was
free and has recently sworn to the same thing
and under such circumstances it would be a
-dant and Plaintiff are both eager and
anxious that the same judgment may be ren-
-dered, the Defandant at the same time hav-
-ing no claim to or interest in the property.
5 The affidavit of the Plaintiff that she was
held in slavery by PatrickPatrick McSherryMcSherry , on the
strength of which affidavit she obtained
permission to bring this suit was false
6. Said Defandant McSherryMcSherry has taken
no efficient measures to defend said
suit, he did not insist on her giving se-
-curity for costs nor did he make application to
have her hired out during the pen-
dency of the suit; but has ever since permitted
her to remain [ freely ] and voluntarily at his
own house, with her consent.
Garland Alexander & Wells