Bowie in Prince George's County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Northampton Slave Quarters and Archaeological Park
Slaves and Tobacco
In Prince George's County, tobacco production relied on white=servant and black=slave labor. Tobacco was Colonial Maryland's largest export. Like other plantations, Northampton supplemented its tobacco economy by growing grains, livestock, and dairying. Because tobacco production depended on intensive labor, slave labor quickly grew in Prince George's County in the early 1700s. From 1704 to 1710 the enslaved population more than doubled from 436 to 1297. In the late 1700s, sixty percent of the population, where Northampton is located, was enslaved. By the 1800s, African Americans outnumbered
Over the years, some slaves at Northampton were granted freedom. In 1814, Osborn Sprigg;s will granted freedom to 13 enslaved people and their children. Of those freed, Tom and Frank were left livestock and property. Others, like Betsey, were left money while William was left clothing and furniture. However, not all slaves were set free and some who remained in bondage sought freedom through escape.
Runaway ads placed by Osborn Sprigg, Jr., in Washington, D.C's newspaper, The Cantinal of Liberty, for the capture of "Bob" and "Charles".
Samuel Sprigs, governor of Maryland from 1819 to 1822, inherited Northampton around 1814/1815 after the death of his uncle, Osborn Sprigg Jr. The 1840 U.S. Census recorded 117 slaves at Northampton. Some escaped and are documented in runaway ads.
Location. 38° 54.198′ N, 76° 49.009′ W. Marker is in Bowie, Maryland, in Prince George's County. Marker is on Water Port Court. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 10915 Water Port Court, Bowie MD 20721, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 2 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Seeking Freedom (here, next to this marker); Archaeology at the Frame Quarters (a few steps from Archaeology at the Brick Quarters (a few steps from this marker); Weary Warriors (within shouting distance of this marker); “Mount Lubentia” (approx. 1.4 miles away); The Chesapeake Carousel (approx. 1.6 miles away); The History of Watkins Regional Park (approx. 1.8 miles away); Ridgley (approx. 2.1 miles away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Bowie.
Categories. • African Americans • Colonial Era •
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on October 13, 2013, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. This page has been viewed 551 times since then and 19 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on October 13, 2013, by Bill Pfingsten of Bel Air, Maryland. 3, 4, 5. submitted on November 3, 2013, by Allen C. Browne of Silver Spring, Maryland.