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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Petition from Elizabeth Ridley Kellow concerning the imprisonment of William Kellow
Kellow, Elizabeth Ridley
August 22, 1781
Volume 22, Pages 572-573


Halifax, Aug. 22nd, 1781.
To His Excellency Thomas Burke, Esq., Governor of the State of North Carolina.

The Petition of Elizabeth Ridley Kellow Humbly Sheweth:

That some time this last Winter your Petitioner’s Husband, William Kellow, fell into the Hands of the British near Hillsborough, with whom he continued some time, and after the Battle of Guilford was permitted to return home; that on his arrival there he was apprehended by an Order from Gen’l Jones and confined to the prison of Halifax on suspicion of coming as an Emmisary from the Enemy in order to discover the situation of the State and carry such intelligence as he should be able to collect to the Enemy below. On this suspicion, tho’ wholly groundless, as your Petitioner verily believes, he stood committed till the Alarm of Lord Cornwallis’s approach to this Place made it necessary to move him with the other Prisoners into Virginia, somewhere about Winchester. On the late Law passing for the re-admission of Parole Men to the Right of Citizenship on certain Conditions, Your Petitioner procured an Order from Gen’l Jones for her Husband’s enlargement, that he might return and be disposed of by the Laws of his Country, but the same precaution

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that removed him from Halifax had induced the Officer having the Care of him in Virginia to send him North of that State, as is supposed, into Pennsylvania, and the Person sent after Him has not been able to hear certainly where he is. Your Petitioner, therefore, humbly prays that Your Excellency would take such Steps as you think proper to bring your Petitioner’s Husband back, that he may be liberated or otherwise disposed of, according to the Laws of the State; and your Petitioner, &c.


Halifax, Aug. 22nd, 1781.

On Security being given that this Man will return and submit himself to be tried, either by the Civil Laws or Laws Martial, as his Case may require, an order shall be issued for his being discharged from his confinement. The Security must be equal to the whole of his Estate and as much more by Two Sureties.


Halifax, Aug. 22nd, 1781.