Young's Spring and Spring Park Historic Site

Historical Significance

Spring Park is the closest modern feature to Young's Springs, the site where on August 10, 1800, fellow conspirators elected Gabriel the General of the Rebel Army. Gabriel was enslaved  on the Brookfield Plantation in Henrico County. Enslaved men from Richmond, Chesterfield, Hanover, and Caroline attended the meeting, when Gabriel outlined his plan to overtake the capital and convince Governor James Monroe to support more political, social, and economic equality between blacks and whites. The event became known as Gabriel's Rebellion, the largest planned slave uprising in Virginia history.

The rebellion was planned for the night of August 30, 1800 when slaves from neighboring counties were to meet just north of Brook Bridge on Brook Road. Once assembled, the rebels would kill the plantation owners in the area to insure the secrecy of the plot, then proceed to Richmond where they would kidnap Governor Monroe and persuade him to accept their demands.

The scheme failed due to a massive thunderstorm that made roads and bridges impassible. The rebel leaders rescheduled for the next evening, but it was too late. Two slaves from Meadow Farm, Tom and Pharaoh, informed their owner, Mosby Sheppard, of the plot. Sheppard notified Governor Monroe, who called out the militia to protect the capital. Gabriel escaped down the Chickahominy River but on September 23, 1800, he was arrested and imprisoned at the newly built Penitentiary. The Henrico Court tried and convicted Gabriel and more than twenty rebels for conspiracy. Gabriel was executed at the Gallows on October 10, 1800. 

Physical Description

1890's granite spring house on 2 acres of county park property along Upham Creek. The park has a granite sign, benches, and 2 tabletop displays with historical interpretation and photos.

Geographical and Contact Information

2000 Park Street
Richmond, Virginia
23228
Phone: 804-501-5125
Fax: 804-501-5284

Cite this Page:

Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, “Young's Spring and Spring Park Historic Site,” African American Historic Sites Database, accessed October 23, 2017, http://aahistoricsitesva.org/items/show/494.

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