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The County Courthouses and Records of Maryland -- Part 2: The Records
Volume 546, Page 45   View pdf image (33K)
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Of all the records of Anne Arundel County preceding the State House fire of October
1704, only the current volume of the court proceedings, Liber G; the current volume of the
land records, Liber W. T. No. 2; and the preceding volume, Liber W. T. No. 1, survived the
flames. These three volumes may owe their rescue to the fact that they were kept in the
courtroom on the ground floor rather than in the loft room in which the clerk normally kept
his records. Another possibility is that the clerk had taken them to his home that evening
to make current entries. In any case, no scrap of record for the first fifty years of the county
has survived, except for one and a half pages of a court session of March 31, 1694/95, copied
into the records of St. James' Parish.1

The land records listed below through 1778 remained in the custody of the Clerk of the
Court until transferred to the Hall of Records January 29, 1937. Later records have followed
from time to time, the last, those covering the period from 1789 to 1855, having come in
February 1955.

The history of the early court records is more complex. For many years the early volumes
were stored in the basement of the courthouse. Then the Daughters of the American Revolu-
tion and other interested parties were able to persuade the General Assembly to remove these
records to the custody of the Land Office.2 They were rebound by the Land Office, but in the
process two volumes, November Term 1720 to August Term 1722, were overlooked. When
the Land Office moved to the new Hall of Records building, these two volumes remained in
the basement of the old Court of Appeals Building where the Land Office had been housed since
1906. They were found there and transferred to the custody of the Hall of Records Com-
mission in August 1937 to be restored to their proper place in the series which, in the mean-
while (November 1935) had been transferred from the Land Office. The Minutes of the March
Court of 1767 were subsequently found in the basement of the Anne Arundel County court-
house by workers of the Historical Records Survey of the WPA and from there, brought to
the Hall of Records on April 18, 1940. Finally, some of the original minutes of the court which
had found their way into the John Work Garrett Library of Baltimore, now a part of The
Johns Hopkins University, were microfilmed for the Hall of Records in 1941.3 The later court
record series, in which there are many serious gaps, were transferred in 1955.4


In the first volume of this study (p. 13) there appears the following: "Before the State
House ... in Annapolis was completed, the General Assembly and the other agencies of the
Colonial government met in private homes or inns and the County Court probably did the
same, although there are no records extant to prove this." Subsequently Miss Constance

1 Vestry Minutes, 1695-1793, p. 1, Ms. Hall of Records.
2 Ch. 440, Acts of 1912.
3 Courtesy of Elizabeth Baer, Librarian, Evergreen House
4 A list of the Colonial Records of Anne Arundel County then
known was published in 1927 by the late Louis Dow Scisco (Md.


Hist. Mag., Vol. 22, pp. 62-67); this list was used as a basis for
the more comprehensive list which appeared in Inventory of the
County and Town Archives of Maryland No. 2, Anne Arundel
County, Md. Historical Records Survey, 1941, Baltimore. This
volume also contains a list of Early Annapolis records at the
Hall of Records compiled by Morris L. Radoff (Md. Hist. Mag.,
Vol. 35 [1940], pp. 74-78).


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The County Courthouses and Records of Maryland -- Part 2: The Records
Volume 546, Page 45   View pdf image (33K)
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