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Negro Plot in Ulster Co.

A negro plot is discoveredFrom Diary of the American Revolution, Vol I. Compiled by Frank Moore and published in 1859.

Last night, Mr. John Schoonmaker, being in bed at his house in Ulster county, New York, overheard the following conversation between his own negro York, and a negro named Joe, belonging to Mr. Johannes Schoonmaker.

York. How many?
Joe. A great many.
York. From where?
Joe. From Keyserick, Hurley, and Kingstown.
York. How much powder have they?
Joe. Two pounds.
York. That is not enough, they should have more to get through with it, and drums enough to prevent hearing the cries. They will begin two at your house, two at John De Puis, and in proportion, more at other houses. It will be put in execution between this and Wednesday night. When once begun we must go through with it. We are to set fire to the houses, and stand at the doors and the windows to receive the people as they come out.1

 

1 Gaines’ Mercury, March 6. –This account baring been deposed before a magistrate, the two negroes were committed to gaol, and, together with several other negroes, examined before four magistrates who met for that purpose, but no further discoveries could be made.

Another account names Marbletown, as well as the three above mentioned; and that the negroes were to be divided into parties, to fire the houses, cry Me! and kill the people as they came out. The motive for this conspiracy was the recovery of their freedom. A large quantity of powder and ball was found with several negroes; and besides this, there are said to be advices in town, that besides the two negroes before mentioned, seventeen or eighteen have been committed to gaol.

A report has likewise been current, that these negroes were to be joined by five or six hundred Indians; but it does not appear that there is any good foundation for the report. —Pennsylvania Journal, March 8.