Moses [Morris] Kelley

Moses or Morris as he is called in the Birchtown Muster appears to travel alone in the Book of Negroes. Moses travels on L'Abondance in November 1783 - the last ship to leave New York with other members of the Black Brigade who where the last to be evacuated from the city. Moses/Morris was formerly owned by George Kelly from the Portsmouth area of Norfolk County and was just old enough to appear in a tithable list in 1778 before he ran the following year. Moses is no longer listed among Kelly's slaves in 1780. There is another Moses Kelley, whose former owner was Marry/Mary Kelly of Portsmouth and who may be a son or brother.
Moses [Morris] Kelley Relationships
  • Relative: Moses Kelley, Assumed [ Common Distinctive Name, Proximity In Musters, Proximity In Ownership, Kin Relations Between Owners Appropriate Ages ] , Source: The Book of Negroes
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7/ Nov

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Lord Dunmore's Proclamation - Norfolk

  • John Murray, Lord Dunmore -

    John Murray, 4th Earl of Dunmore (1732 – 25 February 1809), was the  colonial governor of Virginia at the outbreak of the American Revolution.

Source for this event: Lord Dunmore's Proclamation


Tithables for Portsmouth to New Mill Creek-1778 - Portsmouth to New Mill Creek

Source for this event: Norfolk County Virginia Tithables, Volume 3, 1766 - 1780
Name Owner
Moses George Kelly - Portsmouth




The Burning of Portsmouth - Portsmouth

  • The Burning of Portsmouth 1779 -

    In May 1779 the British detached a fleet of ships under Admiral Collier with a army detachment under General Matthew to make a putative raid into the Lower Chesapeake and destoy the tobacco warehouses. This fleet was supported by a smaller fleet of privateers owned by John Goodridge. After destroying much of Portsmouth, the British took away a large contingent of runaways from the Portsmouth and Norfolk area. A group consisting of 256 men, 135 women and 127 children.


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Treaty of Paris - Paris France

  • Treaty of Paris -

    In November 1782 a provisional peace treaty was hammered out between the British and the Americans in Paris.

Source for this event: Treaty of Paris


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Evacuation of New York - New York

  • Evacuation of New York -

    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.”

Source for this event: The Book of Negroes
Vessel Names and their Commanders Where Bound Names Age Description Names of the Person in whose Possession they now are Remarks
L'Abondance - November
Master: Lt. Phillips
Port Mattoon Moses Kelley 20 Stout fellow Formerly Slave to George Kelly, Portsmouth. Left 4 years ago. Black Brigade. Certificate from General Musgrave.


Birchtown Muster - Birchtown

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
Morris Kelly 21 Labourer Captain George Fraction