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A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature 1635-1789 by Edward C. Papenfuse, et. al.
Volume 426, Page 623   View pdf image (33K)
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LAURENCE (1738-1815). BORN, in 1738, prob-
ably in Pennsylvania; eldest son. NATIVE: second
generation. RESIDED: in Frederick Town, Fred-
erick County, in 1765; Upper Potomac and Sug-
arland hundreds (2nd tax district), Montgomery
County, from at least 1797 until 1815. FAMILY
BACKGROUND. FATHER: William O'Neale (?-1759),
who probably immigrated from Pennsylvania to
Prince George's County in 1744, later resided
Frederick County, and was a planter. MOTHER:
Elinor, daughter of Thomas Ball of Prince George's
County, a tailor. BROTHERS: William, Jr.; John;
Henry; and David. SISTERS: Joanna; Anna, who
probably married by 1759 Samuel Middleton;
Mary; Eleanor, who probably married by 1793
(first name unknown) West; and Elizabeth. MAR-
RIED Henrietta, widow of Clement Brooke, Jr.,
daughter of Charles Neale (Neill) of Montgomery
County and wife Mary. CHILDREN. SONS: Henry
(?-1817), a minor in 1790, who never married;
John (?-1818), a minor in 1790, who married
Elizabeth Henrietta. DAUGHTERS: Mary Anne (?-
1839), who never married; Eleanor, who married
Francis Jamison (?-ca. 1823). PRIVATE CAREER.
least two of his children bequeathed money to
the Roman Catholic church in their wills. SOCIAL
STATUS AND ACTIVITIES: Gent., by 1770; Esq., by


Montgomery County, 1780-1781, 1781-1782,
1782-1783, 1783, 1784, 1785, 1786-1787, 1787-
1788 (Grievances 2), 1788, 1789 (Grievances),
1790, 1791-1792, 1792, 1793, 1794, 1795, 1796.
ADDITIONAL COMMENT: On December 20, 1794,
the following resolution was introduced in the
House: "Resolved, that Laurence O'Neale be ex-
pelled ..... and his seat as a delegate from Mont-
gomery County declared to be and it is hereby
vacated." On December 21, 1794, after a second
reading, the resolution was voted down. A res-
olution of censure was then proposed and adopted,
which stated "That the house do highly disap-
prove of the conduct of Laurence O'Neale, Es-
quire, as a member of this house, in entering an
application at the land-office for a proclamation
warrant to affect the land of John Hamilton, after
a disclosure of the facts... by the petition of the
said John Hamilton." Immediately prior to the
first resolution the General Assembly reflected
its opinion in a statement "that such conduct is
a violation of the rights of the people, of this state,
and the duty of a representative." OTHER STATE

OFFICE: Maryland Senate elector, Montgomery
County, elected 1786, 1791. LOCAL OFFICES: col-
lector, Frederick Town, 1765; surveyor, Freder-
ick County, ca. 1765; sheriff, Frederick County,
1773, 1774; commissioner of the tax, Montgom-
ery County, appointed December 29, 1779; mi-
litia recruiter, probably from Montgomery County,
appointed June 25, 1781; justice, Montgomery
County, 1787-1797; justice, Orphans' Court,
Montgomery County, 1788. STANDS ON PUBLIC/
PRIVATE ISSUES: subscribed £300.0.0 to defray
wartime campaign expenses, May 1781. WEALTH


value £145.0.0, 1783; 20 slaves, 1790; assessed
value £682.0.0, including 22 slaves, 1797; assessed
value £652.0.0, including 24 slaves and 24 oz.
plate, 1798; assessed value £680.18.4, including
28 slaves and 19 oz. plate, 1806; assessed value
$2,410.00, including 40 slaves and 25 oz. plate,
1813. ANNUAL INCOME: O'Neale served as secu-
rity on the bond of James Hackman, who was
appointed sheriff of Frederick County in 1772. In
an agreement drawn up between the two, O'Neale
agreed to manage and direct the office of sheriff
during Hackman's term of office, including re-
ceiving and collecting all public and county levies
and officers' fees, plus all money or tobacco
payable to him as sheriff. Hackman also agreed
to permit O'Neale to nominate deputies and sub-
sheriffs and to receive all profits accrued from the
office. O'Neale agreed to pay Hackman £100.0.0
for each year that Hackman held the office of
sheriff. LAND AT FIRST ELECTION: 2,482 acres in
Frederick and Washington counties. Extremely
active in obtaining warrants for land from 1764
until nearly 1800. Held 499 acres in unpatented
survey certificates in Frederick County not in-
cluded in the above total. SIGNIFICANT CHANGES


purchased 2,584 acres in Montgomery County,
plus 5 lots in Williamsburgh (later known as
Rockville), Montgomery County, 1785-1809, 429
acres of which was confiscated British property.
Also held unpatented survey certificates on 2,940
acres in Allegany, Montgomery, and Washington
counties, 1789-1800. Sold 1,244 acres, mostly in
Washington County, and a small amount in Al-
legany and Montgomery counties, between 1790
and 1811, plus 239 acres in adjoining tracts in
Montgomery County in 1801 and 1807. Deeded
346 acres in Montgomery County as a gift to his
daughter and son-in-law, 1810. The total acreage
sold and deeded to others amounted to 1,829 acres,
Washington, Allegany, and Montgomery coun-



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A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature 1635-1789 by Edward C. Papenfuse, et. al.
Volume 426, Page 623   View pdf image (33K)
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