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‘Otherwise They Will Be Discharged’
Kidnapped by the Local Goaler

February 5, 1756

The Pennsylvania Gazette

Chester, January 24, 1756.

Taken up as runaways, and now in Chester goals,

one John Bryan, says he was born in the county of Cork, in Ireland, has been almost two years in the country, came in the skow [1] Lisbon, Capt. Row, arrived that New Castle on Delaware, and bought off the same by one James White, in Queen Anne county, Maryland.

The other named John Peter Overton, says he is a freeman, and served his Time with William Foster, of Evesham township, Burlington county, in the Jerseys.

These are therefore to desire the said James White and William Foster, if they have any demands against the above, or any other person that has, to come in five weeks from the date hereof, otherwise they will be discharged, paying their charges. [2]



1. A single-masted sloop, related to a schooner, usually spelled with a ‘c’ rather than a ‘k’

2. Perhaps for lack of paperwork, Samuel Smith has abducted these two men and is holding them for their masters—if they still have any—even though these captives have enough money to pay their jail charges.

America in Chains

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