Laura, a woman of colour v. Henry B. Belt
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LauraLaura vs
HenryHenry B Belt
woman of color
suit for freedom

In the Circuit CourtCircuit Court
of St Louis County
State of MissouriMissouri
April term 1852

Plaintiff states that she
is a free person and that she is in possession of
and held as a slave by defendant. Plaintiff
states that she became entitled to her freedom
and is a free person because she was taken from
the state of MissouriMissouri in the year of 1847 or 1848 by
her then owner and master John MC KenneyKinney to Terri
tory belonging to the United StatesUnited States, called Indian
Territory north of thirty six, 36, degrees thirty, 30, minutes of
north latitude in which territory slavery is prohibited and
that she remained in the aforesaid territory near Fort Scott,
and performed labour for said MC KenneyKinney he
claiming her as his slave until about the month
of september 1850. Plaintiff states further that her said
Master MC KinneyKinney resided in and made the aforesaid
territory his home and kept plaintiff in his possession
during the time mentioner from 1847 or 1848 until as aforesaid to until about
september 1850 and then bought her back to
the state of MissouriMissouri and therefore
she claims to be a free person. Plaintiff states that
before and at the time of commencing this suit that
she was a free person and was held and is still held as a
slave by defendant and she prays judgement for
her freedom and release from the claim of defendant and
all others to her as a slave

LauraLaura By her

Atty JoelJoel C RichmondRichmond Joel