Daniel, a tall, handsome, dark-skinned man, left William Barnes’ plantation near Oak Grove [Saratoga] on the night of 20 September 1834. Eleven months later, Barnes began running ads in the Tarboro Press, offering a $50 reward for Daniel’s capture. Despite specific details about Daniel’s physique, his mother and siblings (from whom he had been separated when sold by Asahel Farmer), and even his father (a blacksmith who worked nearly independently in Nash County), Daniel was still on the lam in May 1936 when this ad ran, and as late as April 1837, when the Press re-printed it.
Tarboro’ Press, 7 May 1836.
Four years later, Abner Tison, another Saratoga-area planter, offered a reward for a Daniel whose physical description closely matched the Daniel above. He’d been missing a year. Though the ages are off, this Daniel had some notable scars, and was said to have been raised in Pitt County, this is surely the same knock-kneed man, bound and determined to take his freedom.
Tarboro’ Press, 24 July 1841.
Interesting drop in reward. Speaks so much history in such a small article.
Were most of the enslaved Barnes in Wilson on the William Barnes Plantation?
By no means. There were dozens of enslavers named Barnes in what is now Wilson County. It is the most common surname in the county, black or white.