February 17, 2014

Women's Lib in 1731

I've always thought prenup agreements were a product of the greedy 20th and 21st century. Apparently not.

My 6th great grandparents must have been savvy business people. They had a prenup. Signed in 1731 in Bertie County, NC.  

I'm thinking it was associated with (or the same as) the March 14, 1731 "marriage contract" made between William Stancil and Africa Smithwick (sometimes her last name is shown as Smith). It involved the ownership of a "negro girl", aka slave, Jane. 

Africa was apparently quite involved in the family business. Her name appears on a number of land deeds with her husband over the years. 

The Stancils were a wealthy family holding a good deal of land and slaves. Good thing they were also smart.

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