1803, Broffo Bowles, Manumission


1803, Broffo Bowles, Manumission
Event Description
Broffo Bowles was manumitted jointly by John Combs and Lewis Combs of South Amboy, Middlesex County, New Jersey, on May 3, 1803.

The certificate of manumission was signed by the Overseers of the Poor of South Amboy (Matthias Rue, William Toan) and Justices of the Peace for Middlesex County (John Combs, Jacob Suidam) on May 3, 1803. The document stated that Broffo Bowles was examined in court and met the eligibility requirements for manumission in New Jersey, i.e. the person was 21 to 40 years old and was "sound in mind and not under any bodily incapacity" of obtaining a livelihood. Broffo Bowles's exact age was not recorded in the document. This manumission was recorded by the Middlesex County Clerk (William P. Deare) on May 4, 1803.

Note that the clerk's copy of the certificate of manumission lists one of the manumitters as John Combs and also lists one of the Justices of the Peace as John Combs. It is not entirely clear whether these are two different men, the same man, or an error on the part of the clerk.
Action Status
3 May 1803
South Amboy, NJ
Primary Participant
Broffo Bowles
Primary Participant Description (verbatim)
slave named Broffo Bowles
21 to 40
Freedom Status
Enslaver of Primary Event Participant
John Combs
Lewis Combs
Middlesex County Manumissions and Removals, page 44
Manumission of Broffo Bowles (certificate dated 1803-05-03), recorded in Manumissions and Removals Book, p. 44. Middlesex County (N.J.) Records, 1688-1929, Vol. XI (MC 784.1). Special Collections and University Archives, Rutgers University Libraries.
Record Contributor
Isaac Guzmán
Jesse Bayker