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A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature 1635-1789 by Edward C. Papenfuse, et. al.
Volume 426, Page 237   View pdf image (33K)
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BIOGRAPHIES COU

COURSEY, WILLIAM (?-1685). BORN: probably
in Ireland; younger son. IMMIGRATED: in 1649,
probably as a minor with his brothers from Vir-
ginia. RESIDED: in St. Mary's County; Calvert
County, by 1651; Kent County by 1661; Talbot
County, by 1662. FAMILY BACKGROUND. FATHER:
Henry Coursey. BROTHERS: John (?-1661), the
sheriff of Kent County in 1657; Henry Coursey (ca.
1629-1695); and James, of Lincoln's Inn, Middle-
sex, England. SISTERS: Jane; Catherine; Ann; and
Juliana. MARRIED ca. 1664 Elizabeth. CHILDREN.
SON: William Coursey (?-ca. 1717/18), who mar-
ried by 1694 Elizabeth (1658/59-1726), widow of
Vincent Lowe (?-1692) and daughter of Seth Fos-
ter (?-1674/75). PRIVATE CAREER. EDUCATION:
literate. RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION: Protestant. SO-
CIAL STATUS AND ACTIVITIES: Mr. on arrival;
benefitted from the political prominence achieved
by his brother Henry Coursey (ca. 1629-1695). OC-
CUPATIONAL PROFILE: planter. PUBLIC CAREER.
LEGISLATIVE SERVICE: Lower House, Talbot
County, 1666 (Laws). LOCAL OFFICES: acting sher-
iff, Calvert County, 1658-1659; justice, Kent
County, 1661 (quorum), Talbot County, 1661/62-
1667, 1670-1674, 1679-1685 (quorum); sheriff,
Talbot County, 1667-1669, 1674-1679. MILITARY
SERVICE: major, by 1679. WEALTH DURING LIFE-
TIME. LAND AT FIRST ELECTION: ca. 1,800 acres.

WEALTH AT DEATH. DIED: by August 12, 1685.

PERSONAL PROPERTY: TEV, £363.8.4 sterling plus
4,000 pounds of tobacco, (including 1 slave and 2
servants). LAND. ca. 3,000 acres.

COURSEY, WILLIAM (?-ca. 1717/18). BORN:
after 1664 in Talbot County; only son. NATIVE:
second generation. RESIDED: in Talbot County;
Queen Anne's County after 1707. FAMILY BACK-
GROUND. FATHER: William Coursey (?-1685).
MOTHER: Elizabeth. UNCLE: Henry Coursey (ca.
1629-1695). FIRST COUSIN: Henry Coursey (1662-
1707). MARRIED by 1694 Elizabeth (1658/59-
1726), widow of Vincent Lowe (?-1692); daughter
of Seth Foster (?-1674/75). Her half brother was
John Hawkins (ca. 1657-1717). CHILDREN. Died
without progeny. PRIVATE CAREER. EDUCATION:
literate, probably educated in England. RELIGIOUS
AFFILIATION: Anglican. SOCIAL STATUS AND AC-
TIVITIES: second generation burgess; in England at
time of his father's death, 1685; Gent., by 1694.
OCCUPATIONAL PROFILE: planter. PUBLIC CA-
REER. LEGISLATIVE SERVICE: Lower House, Tal-
bot County, 1696-1697 (elected to the 7th session)
1702 (election to the 3rd session voided); Upper
House, 1704 (appointed by the 5th session), 1704-
1707, 1708A, 1708B-1711, 1712-1714 (absent the

1st and 2nd sessions), 1715, 1716-1717 (died be-
fore the 3rd session). OTHER PROVINCIAL OFFICE:
Council, 1703/4-1717/18. LOCAL OFFICES: jus-
tice, Talbot County, 1694-1703/4 (quorum); St.
Paul's Parish Vestry, Talbot County, 1694-
1699/1700. MILITARY SERVICE: major, by 1707;
colonel, 1707-1717/18. STANDS ON PUBLIC/PRI-
VATE ISSUES: opposed the revolution of Protestant
Associators in 1689; achieved first offices under
Gov. Francis Nicholson. WEALTH DURING LIFE-
TIME. LAND AT FIRST ELECTION: ca. 5,000 acres;
1,500 acres from his wife's dower. WEALTH AT
DEATH. DIED: will probated on February 3,

1717/18. PERSONAL PROPERTY: TEV, £449.16.3

(including 8 slaves). LAND: over 3,000 acres; prob-
ably over 5,000 acres.

COURTS, JOHN (1655/56-1702). BORN: in
1655/56 in Charles County; first son. NATIVE: sec-
ond generation. RESIDED: in Charles County. FAM-
ILY BACKGROUND. FATHER John Courts, Sr. (?-

1702), who immigrated in 1639 as an indentured
servant, but later became a substantial landowner.
MOTHER: Margaret, who immigrated by 1649 as
an indentured servant. BROTHER: Hugh. SISTER:
Margaret (1665/66-?). NATURAL SISTER:
Elizabeth (1663-?), who married James Keech (ca.
1651-1708/9). MARRIED Charity (?-1703), daugh-
ter of Robert Henley (ca. 1617-1684). She subse-
quently married John Contee (?-1708). CHILDREN.
SONS: John Courts (1691/92-1747/48), who mar-
ried Elizabeth; Henley (?-ca. 1712); Charles; and
William. DAUGHTERS: Ann (1693-?), who married
John Rogers; Charity (1680-1711), who married
first, Bayne Small wood (?-1709), son of James
Smallwood (ca. 1639-ca. 1714/15), and second, in
1710 Daniel Dulany (1685-1753). PRIVATE CA-
REER. EDUCATION: literate. RELIGIOUS AFFILIA-
TION: Anglican. SOCIAL STATUS AND ACTIVITIES:
his marriage brought upward social mobility, with
first offices coming shortly after his father-in-law's
death. OCCUPATIONAL PROFILE: wheelwright;
planter; merchant. PUBLIC CAREER. LEGISLATIVE
SERVICE Associators' Convention, Charles
County, 1689-1692; Grand Committee of Twenty,
1690-1692; Upper House, 1692-1693, 1694-1697,
1697/98-1700, 1701-1702 (died before the 4th
session). OTHER PROVINCIAL OFFICES: Council,
1691-1702; joint commissary general, 1699-1700.
LOCAL OFFICES: justice, Charles County, 1685-
1692; coroner, Charles County, 1692; William and
Mary Parish Vestry, Charles County, 1693-1697.
MILITARY SERVICE: captain, 1689-1695; colonel,
1695-1702. STANDS ON PUBLIC/PRIVATE ISSUES:
His active role in the revolution of 1689 promoted

237



 

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A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature 1635-1789 by Edward C. Papenfuse, et. al.
Volume 426, Page 237   View pdf image (33K)
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