From 1711 to 1758 Joshua Hempsted—a farmer and businessman—kept a detailed diary. This record provides a valuable source of information about Hempsted’s activities and life in colonial New London, but also about the life and work of Adam Jackson, an enslaved man owned by Hempsted. Jackson’s parents, Joan and John Jackson, lived nearby in New London. The remarkable story of the Jacksons’ efforts to keep their family united illustrates the inconsistencies of slave laws in colonial New England.
The Joshua Hempsted (spelled as the early generations of the family spelled it) House, owned by Connecticut Landmarks, is open to the public. Visitors to the site learn about life in colonial New England and about Adam Jackson and his parents.