Mary travels on the L'Abondance with her husband and children. They are listed together in the BIrchtown muster. She was prominent in the Methodist congregation and was a Methodist exhorter as early as 1774.
She was acquired as a house slave by John Willoughby when she was an adult, and she had at least one child. In the tithables John Willoughby lists a ‘young Mary’ for the first time in 1767.
Mary married Caesar Perth in New York after 1779. Caesar is named in the same tithable list as owned by Willoughby's neighbour, Hardress Waller. Our assumption is Patience, Hannah and Zilpah are the children of Mary Perth by a previous relationship, and there is also a boy named Luke named in the Birchtown muster. These are are too young to be listed in the tithables. The surname of two of the children suggests that their name is probably Saville, from an extensive family of small slave holders rom New Mill Creek, but the Norfolk titheables for 1751 - 1768 do not list a Saville who owns a slave named Mary. One of the Saville men may have been the father or one of the Savilles slaves could have been the father of her children.
Mary and Caesar Perth and their daughter Susan, as well as Hannah and Patience, all relocated to Sierra Leone.
John Willoughby was major Virginia planter and a suspect Loyalist, who died in 1776.
Norfolk’s enslaved Methodists owed conversion to Robert Williams, a self-funded Wesleyan itinerant from Ireland who arrived at Norfolk en route to New York in the summer of 1769. By 1776 there were several large Black Methodist meetings in the area around Norfolk.
In 1772, in Norfolk Virginia, when the moon provided just enough light, a young slave woman would strap her baby on her back and slip out of household of John Willoughby. Cautiously making her way out of the sleeping town,
Double-click on a person's name to see their relationships.
Source for this event: Norfolk County Virginia Tithables, Volume 3, 1766 - 1780
|Young Mary||John Willoughby - Norfolk||[This is the first entry among the tithables relating to John Willoughby that mentions Mary Perth.]|
In April 1783 the first evacuation fleet left for Nova Scotia. A week later the British Commander, Sir Guy Carleton, sailed up the Hudson River to Orangetown for a conference with General Washington to discuss the evacuation. As the victorious commander, Washington opened the meeting by reiterating the resolution of Congress regarding “the delivery of all Negroes and other property.”
|Vessel Names and their Commanders||Where Bound||Names||Age||Description||Names of the Person in whose Possession they now are||Remarks|
|L'Abondance - July
Master: Lt. Philips
|Port Roseway||Mary Perth||43||stout wench||Formerly Slave to John Willoughby, Norfolk. Left 7 years ago. Captain Perth's Company. Certificate from General Birch.|
Source for this event: Birchtown Muster of Free Blacks
|Name||Age||Occupation||Families they lived with||Companies they belong to||Remarks||Company They Are Now With|
|Mary Perth||44||Captain Perth's Company|