People Enslaved at Ashland

Ashland is aware of only two images ever made of the people Henry Clay enslaved.  Left: Charles Dupuy drawn by artist John Neagle, 1842.  Right: his father Aaron Dupuy photographed most likely during Henry Clay’s funeral in Lexington, 1852.

People Enslaved at Ashland

Over the course of his life, Henry Clay enslaved about 120 people of African descent. The men, women, and children enslaved at Ashland were more than tools to build wealth for the Clay family. They were human beings.

Historical records of the people enslaved here are often limited to documents relating to their labor or evidence of individuals being bought or sold. There are some written accounts, however, that give us a glimpse into the lives of people enslaved at Ashland.

Ashland was a 600-acre plantation where enslaved people labored long hours inside the mansion and on the farm. Every facet of life at Ashland was made possible by their labor, from the growing, harvesting, and breaking of hemp, to raising livestock, to cooking and cleaning for the Clays.

Enslaved families were always under threat of separation by assignments to work on different parts of the farm or, even worse, by being sold apart.

Learn More on our Traces Tour

On the Traces: Slavery at Ashland tour, visitors walk in the footsteps of the men, women, and children who were enslaved at Ashland. Learn how historians use traces of evidence to uncover their stories. Listen to the voices of those who resisted bondage and honor the memory of those who were forced to labor at Ashland.

This tour was made possible by a Local History Trust Fund Grant administered by the Kentucky Historical Society.

Ancestry

If you have an ancestor who lived or worked at Ashland, or if you have artifacts, documents, or photos, please contact our Curator, Eric Brooks at ebrooks@henryclay.org or 859-266-8581 x 203

Names of People Enslaved at Ashland

We know that Henry Clay enslaved at least 122 people here at Ashland. We honor their names, their labor, and hope to learn more of their stories through ongoing research.

Milly
Kelsey
Henry
Edgar
Dick
Little Sam
Simon
Aaron
“Negro Woman”
Charlotte Dupuy
Daniel
Frank
Major
Will
Patsey
Cuthbert
Phillis
Ede
Giles
Lewis
Sam
Fanny
Maria
George
Peter

Bill
Jonathan
Jim
Isaac
“Billy or Butler”
Joe
George
Basswile
Darkey
Aaron Dupuy
Ant
Juoy
Juliann
Randall
Bristow
Coty
Jude
Priscilla
John
Joe
Caroline
Shadrach

Jerry
Humphrey
Eter
John
Steve
Jenny
Dave
William
“Negro girl”
“Negro child”
Kitty
Mary Ann Dupuy
Charles Dupuy
Ali
Anthony
Mary
Alcey
Mary
John
Meredith
Henry
Aaron
Nathan
Logan
James
John
Sibby
Winston

Betsey
Adam
Melly
Abraham
David
Jane
Tom
Billy
Tom Baltimore and wife
George
Annis
Milton
Henry
Jnw
“Young boy at the breast”
Charlotte
Ned
“Boy”
“Child”
“Woman”
“Old negro woman”
Amelia
Eliza
“Old Ron”
Vesper

“Negro man”
Allen
James
Sidney
Lewis
Charles Lilly
Emily Lilly
Henry Dupuy
Solomon
Harvey
Bob
Pat
Jack
Tena
Moses
Epra
Louisa
Charlotte
Tom Todd
Jane Todd
Levi
Edward
Mia
Maria Todd
Albert Mitchum

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