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Adam Waterford vs. Isaac Baker Case Transcript

Identifier: AppMs-0314

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of an 1841 handwritten transcript of an 1829-1840 case transferred from the Chancery Court in Rogersville, Tennessee to the United States District Court of East Tennessee. The case concerned disputes over debt between Adam Waterford, a free person of color, of Sullivan County, Tennessee, and Isaac Baker of Washington County, Virginia. Major issues included disputes over tracts of land in Tazewell County, Viriginia and Sullivan County, Tennessee; the sale of forty head of cattle; and the question of whether Waterford sold or mortgaged his brother, a slave named Walter Waterford, to Baker to satisfy a portion of his debt.

The collection also includes a typed transcription of the original transcript.


  • Issued: 1841


Conditions Governing Access

The transcript is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.


0.25 linear feet

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Adam Waterford vs Isaac Baker Case Transcript was transferred to the archives by Fred Borchuck, Director of Sherrod Library, in December 1987. Borchuck found the transcript in a closet in his office.

Georgia Greer of the Archives of Appalachia typed the transcript circa 1993.

Related Materials

Tedesco, M. (2005). A Free Black Slave Owner in East Tennessee: The Strange Case of Adam Waterford. In J. C. Inscoe (Author), Appalachians and Race: The Mountain South from Slavery to Segregation (pp. 133-153). Lexington, KY: University Press of Kentucky.

The 1993 paper on which the above essay is based is filed with collection documents in the Archives of Appalachia and is available on request.

Processing Information

Georgia Greer, Ed Speer, Marie Tedesco completed processing of the transcript in 1992.

Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Archives of Appalachia Repository

PO Box 70295
344 J.L. Seehorn Jr. Rd.
Johnson City TN 37614 USA