ance, and minute accounts of the affairs of the colony, were regularly
sent to the Lord Proprietary in England, there is reason to expect that
some of these may be recovered. In particular, we are reluctant to
abandon all hope of the recovery of the " two chests marked "Calvert
Papers," formerly in the custody of the British Museum, but now
While scrupulous fidelity has been observed in reproducing the original
text, it has not been thought advisable to reprint each book as it stands.
Many of the volumes, especially the earlier, are miscellaneous receptacles
of records of every kind; Acts and Proceedings of Assembly being
mixed up with Orders and Proceedings in Council, warrants, adminis-
trators' accounts, petitions, appeals, grants, &c., &c. It was clearly best
to adopt such an arrangement as would bring order into this chaos, and
render consultation of the records easy. The plan chosen has been to
take up first the Acts and Proceedings of Assembly, as a nearly con-
tinuous thread running through the whole, and of these to make this
first volume, which begins with the earliest extant record of an Assembly,
1637/8, and comes down to the session of 1664. If it be the pleasure
of the Legislature to continue the publication, the Proprietary Records,
or the Council Proceedings can be next taken up, then Judicial Records,
&c., each set being arranged in order of time, and the whole forming a
digested body of our colonial archives, easy of reference, and in the
best form for study.
It is at once the duty and the pleasure of the Editor to acknowledge
the invaluable assistance of Mr. J.W. M. Lee, of the Maryland Historical
Society, without which this publication would hardly have been possible.
W. H. B.