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Proceedings and Acts of the General Assembly, 1769-1770
Volume 62, Preface 16   View pdf image (33K)
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xvi Introduction.

THE LOWER HOUSE

When the Lower House convened on November 17, 1769, this, as has been
stated, was the second session of an Assembly whose members of the Lower
House of Delegates, as they were called, had been elected in Nov.-Dec., 1767.
The election results appear in the Maryland Gazette for that year and months
and also in the January, 1768, issues. The first session of the newly elected
house was held in May and June, 1768. The more prominent members of the
Lower House are discussed in the introduction to the last volume of this series
(Arch. Md. LXI, xlii-xliii).

When the second session opened on November 17, 1769, most of the same
Delegates appeared. Six deaths, however, had occurred since the first session
had ended on June 22, 1768. Those who had died were Henry Baker, of Cecil
County, Capt. Joseph Chapline, of Frederick County, Francis Waring and
William Murdock, of Prince George's County, and Philemon Lecompte, of
Dorchester County (p. 40; Maryland Gazette, July 28, 1768; Jan. 12, Feb. 23,
Oct. 19, Dec. 7, 1769).

Robert Adair, who was a Delegate for Baltimore County, died in Baltimore
Town on October 22, 1768 (Maryland Gazette, Oct. 27, 1768). Thomas Jen-
ings, another Delegate from Frederick County, having accepted the office of
Attorney General since the last session of the Assembly, his seat in the Lower
House was declared vacated (p. 40). About a week later, on November 25,
1769, the seat of John Hanson, Jr., of Charles County, was also declared vacant.
It appears that he had accepted the position of Deputy Surveyor of Frederick
County (p. 50).

The Speaker of the Lower House, Robert Lloyd, was ordered by the Lower
House to issue his warrant to the Secretary of the province requiring him to
make out new writs of election directed to the Sheriffs of those counties where
vacancies had occurred due to death or acceptance of an office (pp. 40, 50).

A number of the Delegates, who had been elected during Nov.-Dec. 1767,
made their appearance for the first time at the second session of the General
Assembly which convened, at Annapolis, on November 17, 1769. Among them
was Edward Tilghman, of Queen Anne's County, who appeared on the opening
day (pp. 5, 39).

Some of the Delegates did not put in their appearance until December.
Edward Noel, of Dorchester County, took the required oaths of office on Decem-
ber 13 (pp. 17, 72). On the following day Andrew Heugh and Thomas
Contee, Delegates from Frederick and Prince George's Counties, respectively,
put in their appearance (pp. 18, 77). Mordecai Jacobs, another Delegate from
Prince George's County, was qualified on December 15 (pp. 20, 8o), while
Thomas Sprigg Wooton, of Frederick County, took his seat in the Lower
House the next day (pp. 23, 84).

Annapolis was entitled to two Delegates to represent the town in the Lower
House, while each of the counties could have four Delegates, making fifty-eight
Delegates in all. Twenty-nine was probably a quorum. Curiously enough,
although the General Assembly met in Annapolis, neither of this town's Dele-
gates was present when the session began on November 17, 1769. John Hall


 

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Proceedings and Acts of the General Assembly, 1769-1770
Volume 62, Preface 16   View pdf image (33K)
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