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  • Writer's pictureBecky Fifield

Names of the Forgotten – Runaway Clothing Database Project

Maryland Gazette, August 9, 1787. Library of Congress. RL Fifield photo.

The Runaway Clothing Database project uses newspaper runaway advertisements to catalog the garments of indentured and enslaved women in the American colonies from 1750-1790. These advertisements are often the only glimpse of these women in the documentary record. Personal information, such as their physical characteristics, habits, and skills are included in the runaway advertisements. You can read an abstract from Textile History’s May 2011 issue here.

One of the most poignant pieces of data available through the runaway advertisement is the name of the eloped women.  Below is the list of first names of enslaved women in the project. Enslaved women were generally advertised for with only a first name. Some masters advertised for women only by physical description, neglecting to include the woman’s name in the advertisement. Servant First NameAgnesAliceAlleyAmeliaAmintaAmyAnnAnnasAnneArabellaBarbaraBarshabaBeckBelindaBellowBessBetBettyBillahCandiceCeliaCharlotteCharlotteeChloeClarissaCloeCuthieDaphneDianaDidoDinaDinahDyneEdithEleanorElizabethEstherFannFannyFortuneFrancisFree FannyGinGraceGypseyHagaiHagarHannahHenneyHennyHesterHetJaneJeaneJennyJinJoanJudeKateKittyLenaLetitiaLetticeLiddLillLuceLucyLydiaMallMargaretMariaMaryMeliaMillaMillyMimbaMollMollyMonicaNanNancyNaneNannNannyNantsNellNellyOhneckPameliaPatPatiencePattPattyPegPeggyPersillaPhillisPhoebePleasant Queen AnnePollPrincessPriscillaPrussiaRachelRedisherRhodeRoadRoseSallSallySarahSethShinSidneySilvaSimileSophiaStiffanySuckSuckySueSukeySuseySylviaTamarVenusVioletVioletusWinneyZilphZilphaZinah

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