Williamson Mann, Chesterfield, to Ben Lee, Richmond, 29 August 1831
My old fellow
Chesterfield Aug 29 1831
You will tell or acquaint every servant in Richmond & adjoining countys they all must be in a strik readiness, that this occourance will go through virignia with the slaves & whites if there had never been an assosiation & a visiting with the free & slaves this would never had of been they are put up by the free about their liberation I've wrote to norfolk amelia nottaway & several other countys to different slaves bob bill Miller Bowler John furguson fed roney & several other free fellow has put of Dr Crumps nor field Mr Scotts & a great many gentlemen private servants how they must act in getting in getting of their liberation they must set fire to the cyty begining at Shockoe hill then going through east west north south set fire to the briges they are aboutt to break out in fousland & in meclenburg Cyt & several other countys very shortly now there is a barber here in this place as [-- ry] tells me a methodist of the name edwards has put a great many servants up how they should do & act by seting fire to this town I do wish they may succeed by so doing we poor whites can get work as well as the Slaves or collard This fellow edward the methodist says that judge J. F. Maz is no friend to the free & your Richmond free assosiates that you master Watkins Lee brokenberry Johnson Taylor of Norfolk & several other noble delegates is bitterly against them all Ruben Mr archers servant say that billy hickman has jest put him up how to revenge the whites all the brite molatoes of Rich wants to be white So boys you all must do the best you all can for your selfes, only acquainted the servants how you all shall proceed as your friends has advise they has stopt your alls religeon edwards syas so you all ougght to get reveng Some way every white in this place is sceard to death except my slef & a few others this methodist has has put up a Great many slaves in this place how to do I can tell you to push on boys push on
Yor friend williamson Mann
[addressed to "Ben Lee in Great hast mail speedily Richmond swift"]
Governor's Office, Letters Received, John Floyd, Record Group 3, Library of Virginia.