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A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature 1635-1789 by Edward C. Papenfuse, et. al.
Volume 426, Page 131   View pdf image (33K)
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BIOGRAPHIES BER

make pews for the addition, 1761. PUBLIC CA-
REER. LEGISLATIVE SERVICE: Convention, Talbot
County, 5th, 1775; Lower House, Talbot County,
1777, 1777-1778 (resigned on March 4, 1778, to
attend to his business affairs). LOCAL OFFICES:
churchwarden, St. Michael's Parish, Talbot
County, elected 1750; tobacco inspector, St. Mi-
chael's River, Talbot County, appointed 1751,
1753, 1756, 1766, and 1774; St. Michael's Parish
Vestry, Talbot County, elected 1756, 1769, and
1775; justice, Talbot County, appointed 1778 (did
not qualify); commissioner of tax, Talbot County,
1779-1782. MILITARY SERVICE, captain, Thirty-
eighth Battalion, Talbot County Militia, 1776.
STANDS ON PUBLIC/PRIVATE ISSUES, manumitted
three slaves, 1781. WEALTH DURING LIFETIME.
PERSONAL PROPERTY: assessed value £808.5.0,
including 12 slaves and 3 oz. plate, 1783. LAND
AT FIRST ELECTION: 372 acres in Talbot County
(134 acres from his father; 200 acres by purchase).
ADDITIONAL COMMENTS: obtained 192 acres in
Queen Anne's County through his marriage by
1754, but sold it all in 1760. WEALTH AT DEATH.
DIED: will probated on March 6, 1792, in Talbot
County. PERSONAL PROPERTY: size of estate un-
known; no inventories or accounts were recorded;
his will mentioned slaves and livestock. LAND: 373
acres in Talbot County,

BENSON, PERRY (1694-1751). BORN: on April
1, 1694, in St. Michael's Parish, Talbot County;
third son. NATIVE: second generation. RESIDED, on
the north side of the St. Michael's River, Talbot
County. FAMILY BACKGROUND. FATHER: Capt.
James Benson (?-1709), who immigrated in 1674
from England, resided on St. Michael's River, Tal-
bot County, a chirurgeon. MOTHER: Margaret,
immigrated as a servant, free by 1679. BROTHERS:
James (1684/85-?); Edmond Benson (1687-1734);
and Nicholas (ca. 1699-?), who married in 1722
Rachel (1701-1775). SISTERS: Margaret (1682/83-
?); Ann (1689-?), who married James Spencer, Jr.;
Elizabeth (1691-?), who married (first name un-
known) Harrison; and Mary (1702/3-?), who mar-
ried James Parrott. MARRIED by 1719 Rebecca,
widow of Michael Russell. CHILDREN. SON James
Benson (?-1792). STEPSONS: William Russell;
Thomas Russell. DAUGHTERS: Rebecca; Margaret;
and Ann. STEPDAUGHTERS: Sarah Russell, who
married by 1728 William Dawson; Elizabeth Rus-
sell, who married by 1728 William Edwards; and
Mary Russell. PRIVATE CAREER. EDUCATION: lit-
erate. RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION: Anglican, St. Mi-
chael's Parish, Talbot County. SOCIAL STATUS

AND ACTIVITIES: Gent., 1731. OCCUPATIONAL

PROFILE: carpenter, 1715; planter, 1743. PUBLIC

CAREER. LEGISLATIVE SERVICE: Lower House,

Talbot County, 1732-1734. LOCAL OFFICES: jus-
tice, Talbot County, 1732-1751 (quorum, 1739-
1751); St. Michael's Parish Vestry, Talbot County,
elected 1742, 1744, and 1750; coroner, Talbot
County, commissioned 1743; tobacco inspector,
Thomas Bruff s Landing, St. Michael's River, Tal-
bot County, appointed 1748 and 1749 (refused to
serve). WEALTH DURING LIFETIME. LAND AT

FIRST ELECTION: 96 acres in Talbot County (all by
patent); also held 740 acres in Talbot County for
the heirs of his wife's first husband. ADDITIONAL
COMMENTS: Benson had received 220 acres in Tal-
bot County by deed of gift from his brother in
1731, but he sold it all before his first election.

SIGNIFICANT CHANGES IN LAND BETWEEN FIRST

ELECTION AND DEATH: patented 740 acres in Tal-
bot County with John Valiant in 1733, but sold or
gave away all of it before his death; purchased and
patented 232 acres in Talbot County, 1741, 1749-
1750. WEALTH AT DEATH. DIED, on September 24,
1751, in Talbot County. PERSONAL PROPERTY: at
least 2 slaves mentioned in will. LAND: 328 acres
in Talbot County.

BERRY, JAMES (?-1666). IMMIGRATED: in
1652/53 as a free adult with his wife and children
from Virginia. RESIDED: in Calvert County. ADDI-
TIONAL COMMENTS: in Accomack County, Vir-
ginia, by 1636 when he received a patent for 350
acres for transporting himself, his wife, and five
other individuals. MARRIED by 1636 Elizabeth.
CHILDREN. SONS: William Berry (ca. 1636-1691),
who married first, Naomi (?-1663), daughter of
Richard Preston (?-ca. 1669/70), and second, in
1669 Margaret (?-1688), widow of Richard Pres-
ton (?-by 1669) and daughter of Thomas Marsh
(ca. 1615-1656/57); Roger. DAUGHTER: Martha.
PRIVATE CAREER. EDUCATION: literate. RELIGIOUS
AFFILIATION: Protestant, probably a Quaker. SO-
CIAL STATUS AND ACTIVITIES, no title on arrival
in Maryland; Mr., by 1655. OCCUPATIONAL PRO-
FILE: planter. PUBLIC CAREER. LEGISLATIVE SER-
VICE. Assembly, Patuxent (Calvert County), 1654.
LOCAL OFFICE: justice, Patuxent (Calvert County),

1655. STANDS ON PUBLIC/PRIVATE ISSUES: fined

in 1655 and probably lost his court commission
for supporting the proprietary governor William
Stone against the Parliamentary Commissioners.

WEALTH DURING LIFETIME. LAND AT FIRST

ELECTION: probably 400 acres in Maryland and
600 acres in Virginia; sold his land in Virginia in
1655 and patented another 900 acres in Maryland

131



 

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A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature 1635-1789 by Edward C. Papenfuse, et. al.
Volume 426, Page 131   View pdf image (33K)
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