Thomas Willing

Thomas Willing Trustee

Thomas Willing, c. 1780

Thomas Willing, who was the President of the Bank of North America, owned three slaves in 1769 and none by 1782, both years which intersected with his time serving as a trustee of the University. Although it appears that he may have freed his slaves, his owed at least a portion of his wealth and prominence to the labor of enslaved people. Robert Morris, a merchant who Founded the Bank of North America, owned slaves up until 1797. Both in his involvement in trade and his own ownership of enslaved people, his wealth was tied to slavery, which certainly improved his ability to found the Bank.

Pennsylvania Tax & Exoneration records serve as further proof that Thomas Willing owned 3 enslaved people in 1769, owned 1 enslaved person in 1774, and did not own any enslaved people in 1782:

Thomas Willing Taxes

"3 Negros"
Thomas Willing Taxes
Pennsylvania Tax & Exoneration Records, 1769

Thomas Willing Taxes

"1 Negro"
Thomas Willing Taxes
Pennsylvania Tax & Exoneration Records, 1774

Thomas Willing Taxes

[No Taxes Paid on Enslaved People}
Thomas Willing Taxes
Pennsylvania Tax & Exoneration Records, 1782