Celia, A Slave

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Celia, A Slave, A True Story, is authored by Melton A. McLaurin and it is a tale about a young slave woman named Celia. There was no documentation of her actual birthplace, date of birth, parentage, etc. She was probably born in Missouri in the year of 1836. The first recording of her existence was in the summer of 1850 when she was fourteen years of age. She was purchased by Robert Newsom of Calloway County in Missouri. Calloway County was a part of the Fulton Township, which was founded in 1820, and settled mainly by migrants from Kentucky, Virginia, and Tennessee. On December 21, 1855 at 2:30 pm Celia was executed on the gallows in Calloway County after a guilty verdict was reached and then upheld by the Missouri Supreme Court. This came after a heavily political trial set for October. The case began on Monday, June 25, 1855. State v. Celia, a Slave, Celia File No. 4496, began with Judge William Augustus Hall presiding. Two local Justices, D. M. Whyte and Isaac P. Howe, and a jury of six men: George Thomas, Daniel Robinson, John Wells, Simpson Hyton, George Brown, and John Carrington, all considered an affidavit filed by David Newsom accusing Celia of murder. They found probable cause to charge her with murder of her master, and she was arrested and housed in the Fulton County jail. Celia’s defense for murdering her master Robert Newsom was that she did not mean to kill him, and that she just meant to harm him to deter his attempt to have sexual intercourse with him. She was raped by Newsom on his way home from purchasing her. This started a continuous abusive sexual relationship between the two, resulting in two children fathered by Newsom, of which there is no record of their whereabouts after her execution. Celia started a forbidden relationship with a Newsom slave named George. George urged her to end the sexual relationship between her and

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