MG-53. REAH FRAZER PAPERS, 1739-1879 (bulk 1821-1856).

Correspondence, legal papers, and accounts of Reah Frazer (1804-1856), prominent attorney and for many years a major political figure in Lancaster County. Also included are business and family papers of his father, William Clark Frazer (1776-1838), who also served as a Lancaster attorney and supreme court judge in the Territory of Wisconsin, 1836-38, and his grandfather, William Frazer (1753-1817), Revolutionary War veteran and justice of the peace in Newcastle County, Delaware. Among the many legal documents, accounts and letters are some that provide evidence of the treatment of fugitive and freed African Americans in the Lancaster County area. The personal papers of the three Frazer men also contain accounts and legal papers relating to individual African Americans, 1775-1831, giving insight into their living conditions.


Accounts (Including notes, bills, receipts, judgments), 1774-1818 (Incl. Negro, 1801, 1814). Among these materials are two items concerning African Americans dated 1801 and 1814.

Cases (Including Schuylkill Navigation, 1847). The case papers contain information for the years 1760, 1803, 1804, 1827, 1829 regarding arrests of African Americans, a runaway slave case, and the selling of African American children.

Notes of Arbitration, 1821-1839. This file includes detailed descriptions of both civil and criminal cases, statements of witnesses, references to previous cases, settlements and verdicts. Items relating to African Americans are found in the 1828-1833 and 1838-1839 folders.

Notices to Appear in Court. Writs or summonses to appear before the courts of Lancaster County. Included is a Capias writ issued by the state of Delaware, New Castle County, to Negro William Anderson in 1789 and a court summons issued to John Ingersom (a free Negro) of New Castle County, Delaware in 1815.

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