Stephen was one of 50 enslaved people Dolley Madison transferred to her son in 1844. Little else is known about him, except that he took “vegetable pills” when he was sick.
Polly appears on James Madison Sr.’s tax records from 1782-1786, the only years when enslaved people were listed by name. Nothing else is known about her.
Born on September 18, 1781, Webster – along with his mother and sisters – became a wedding gift from James Madison Sr. to his daughter Nelly Hite in 1783.
When Judith Rives stopped by Montpelier in 1837, she asked “the little girl who came to the door” whether anyone was home – but didn’t ask the young girl’s name.
Ezekiel, age 19, escaped from Montpelier in 1794, headed toward Pennsylvania. His companion was recaptured near Harper’s Ferry, but Ezekiel’s fate is unknown.
Aisley Payne, an enslaved cook for 30 years, later told a newspaper reporter how she, as a young housemaid, prepared for Gen. Lafayette’s 1824 visit to Montpelier.
William (Billey) Gardner was enslaved and taken by James Madison to Philadelphia, where he was sold after getting too many ideas about liberty.
Learn how the Collections Team organized and implemented the 2020 Complete Collections Inventory.