THIS DAY IN VIRGINIA HISTORY
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August 30, 1800
Mosby Sheppard Warned Governor Monroe About a Slave Plot
One of the most extensive antislavery conspiracies in American history was aborted on August 30, 1800. Led by a blacksmith named Gabriel, who was owned by Thomas Prosser, of Henrico County, the slave group planned to enter Richmond, capture the Capitol and the Virginia State Armory, and hold the governor hostage to bargain for freedom for Virginia's slaves. A storm delayed the conspirators' gathering, and a few slaves told their masters of the plot. The conspirators were arrested, and twenty-six slaves were hanged, while another apparently committed suicide in his cell. Two slaves who had informed their masters about the intended rebellion received their freedom.