Not Equal In Law or in Death

This is from the Boston Evening Post September 22 1756:

“Thursday last in the afternoon Mark, a negro man and Phllis a negro woman, both servants of Captain John Codman of Charlestown, were executed at Cambridge for poisoning their said master. The man was hanged and the woman burnt at the stake about 10 yards distant from the gallows. They both died Penitent. ”

For all the differences in law between the races, this couple seem to have been  treated exactly the same as if they had been white.

The woman was treated like a witch while the man as a common criminal.

The last comment suggests they were practicing Christians.


3 thoughts on “Not Equal In Law or in Death

    • Sorry they got caught, for sure. It’s hard to imagine what they went through, but poisoning their master is a pretty desperate thing to do. If they did – there was no forensic science, so did he just die of some cause that looked like poisoning? It was seen an act of mercy to use dry wood for the fires to they died fast, but if they hated the person, they made sure the wood was damp and slow buring so they suffocated


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