Richard (aka Rich) approximately 50 years old, died this date, July 9th, in 1813 of Hydrothorax* and was buried at Bethel Burying Ground. He was an enslaved Black man (“a Negro Slave”) imprisoned by John Stille, a wealthy Philadelphia merchant who was now deceased and so consequently Richard was now “belonging” to the Steele estate.
Between 1790 and 1800, the number of enslaved in Pennsylvania dropped from 3,737 to 1,706. Three years before Richard died (1810) there were 795 and by 1840, 64 bondsmen in the state. By 1850, there were none.* For further reading on the subject, I recommend Forging Freedom by Gary B. Nash.
*Fluid builds up in the chest cavity around the lungs and suffocates the victim. Causes can be from different diseases or heart or liver problems.