Portfolio 14

Enslaved Individuals Compared Between Martha and George Washington

I chose a dataset from George Washington’s Mount Vernon, this transcript is an account of the enslaved individuals who labored on Washington property. In those transcripts they are split into two groups, one George Washington and the other Dowery. Following the death of Martha’s previous husband, she inherited a number of enslaved individuals. In the Washington household, Martha did provide much of the wealth. I found it interesting that a woman may bring more to the table, so to speak, than her husband. If this was the case for the Washingtons, I wondering how common this may have been. A visualization of this population is useful to really appreciate the differences between Martha and George. Martha’s circle is bigger, indicating that she has more enslaved individuals. Within the circle you can see the differences in occupation, where there is a larger number of Spinners + Knit in Martha’s circle than George’s. This may suggest a difference in what kind of work their respective enslaved individuals did, Martha’s tend to be more within the domestic sphere whereas George’s were more laborers (such as carpenters, ditchers, coopers, smiths).

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