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Indybay Feature

Descendant of Washington Family Slaves Speaks Out

Saturday, June 12, 2004
3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Event Type:
Anita Wills
Location Details:
African American Museum &
Library of Oakland
659 14th Street
Oakland CA 94612

Anita L. Wills, Author, Lecturer, and Historian

Saturday June 12, 2004

Anita Wills (510)481-1804
AAMLO-Veda Silva, (510) 637-0204

America is a nation of Laws, and the roots of those laws can be found in Colonial Virginia. It is the states of Presidents, and was known as the Upper South. The slave system in Colonial Virginia, was more psychological than the one in the Deep South, but it was just as deadly.

Henings Statutes At large contains many of the raced based laws passed to contain natives, and Africans. Although those laws are no longer on the books, they are still, "Understood", by those in power. These laws determine who is a full citizen, and whose rights do not have to be respected.

While researching her maternal line in Colonial Virginia, Anita Wills became intimately acquainted with those laws, as they pertained to her Mulatto ancestors. The book Notes And Documents of Free Persons of Color, gives readers a view into the mindset of our founding fathers, including George Washington, and his family. Notes and Documents is 328 pages, Non Fiction, African American History, with appendix, bibliography, index, and endnotes. It is the documented, illustrated, history of Virginia's own Creole population.

The book is a documented chronicle of Four Hundred years of a group labled, "fpc", or Free Persons of Color, by the Fredericksburg Virginia Free Negro Registry. Several of the chronicles involve George Washington, and his family, including the Chapter on Mary Bowden of Popes Creek Plantation.

Mary (born 1730), was a so-called Mulatto Indentured Servant to George Washington's family. She served at the birthplace of George Washington, Popes Creek Plantation from (1737 to about 1787). Her Indenture was forced, and was aimed at the mixed raced offspring of white women. Augustine Washington Senior took Mary to court in Westmoreland County Virginia, where she was adjudged to be seven years old, and Mulatto. While serving her indenture, Mary had several children, who were also subject to the thirty year indentures.

Henry Weincek, Author of the Hairstons: An American Family in Black and White, and An Imperfect God, gave the book an excellent rating. He mentions, the author, and Mary and Patty Bowden in his book, an Imperfect God. Ms. Wills has just completed a successful promotional tour in Pennsylvania.

Ms. Wills will also discuss her film, The Bowdens of Popes Creek, which is scheduled for release in 2005. The audience will have a chance to pose questions to Ms. Wills. Copies of the book can be purchased at: ($26.00 + tax and sh).
Added to the calendar on Fri, Apr 30, 2004 6:04PM
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