Excerpt from Warren
County, North Carolina Will Book #7
November 1793 - November 1794
Documents in this book are certified by MDUKE JOHNSON, C. C. throughout; Book contains 262 manuscript pages.
Index Number 141
A very primitive method of transporting tobacco from Warrenton and adjoining counties to the markets at Petersburg and Richmond prevailed at that time. The hogsheads containing the tobacco were cylindrical in shape, about five feet long and four feet in diameter, and made of pine staves the length of the hogshead, four of five inches wide, and three-fourths of an inch thick, bound together by hoops made of splits of white oak timber. Into these hogsheads the leaf tobacco, stripped from the stalk, nicely cleaned from dust and dirt, and bound together in small bundles, with a smooth leaf of the tobacco holding the bundles together, wrapped around the top of the stem ends, was placed in regular order and pressed by a beam and screw so closely and tightly as to weigh from twelve to eighteen hundred pounds. Spikes of iron, oak or hickory, seasoned, were driven into the center of each end of the hogs-head and answered as axles, around which were fastened the ends of a piece of hickory or white oak split, forming a pole to which was harnessed horses or oxen, the motor power by which the hogsheads were rolled to the end of their journey. The tobacco farmers themselves would generally ride horseback in attendance upon the caravan, and frequently by concert would get together in companies and have a kind of outing or pleasure journey, as well as attend to the business of the sale.
All records are held in the North Carolina State Archives in Raleigh