Archives of Maryland
(Biographical Series)

Edward Hindman
MSA SC 3520-1530

Biography:

Born probably in Talbot County, Maryland. Son of Jacob and Mary (Trippe) Hindman. Seven siblings: James (1741-1830); William (1743-1822); Jacob Henderson; John; Elizabeth; Sarah; Mary. Married Ann Mein (Walker), 1775; no children. Died in Talbot County, Maryland, between March 6 and March 31, 1781.

Edward Hindman was a third generation descendent of a prominent Eastern shore family and the third member of his family to serve as Treasurer of the Eastern Shore. He was the son of Jacob Hindman, a legislator, and his wife Mary. In 1775, Edward married Ann, the widow of Andrew Mein of Talbot County, and the daughter of Rev. Philip Walker of Caroline County. [1]

In January 1776, Hindman was named a lieutenant in the Fourth Independent Company, which was commanded by his brother James. Maryland's independent companies were formed early in the American Revolution, and differed from the nine companies that made up Colonel William Smallwood’s First Maryland Regiment. While the Council of Safety, Maryland's Revolutionary executive body, used the nine regular companies to fulfill the state's quota of troops for the Continental Army, it dispatched seven independent companies throughout Southern Maryland and the Eastern Shore to guard the vast shoreline of the Chesapeake Bay. To help with this mission, the Fourth Independent Company was stationed in Oxford, Talbot County, in March 1776. [2]

Although the Council of Safety originally intended to use the independent companies for the defense of Maryland, the Council was sympathetic to the collective needs of the colonies and answered the Continental Congress’ request for more soldiers early in the summer of 1776. On July 7, 1776 the Council ordered the Fourth Independent Company (along with Smallwood’s Regiment and two other independent companies) to march to Philadelphia and then to New York to reinforce the Continental Army under the command of General George Washington. [3]

On August 27, 1776, the Americans faced the British Army at the Battle of Brooklyn (sometimes called the Battle of Long Island), the first full-scale engagement of the war. The battle was a rout: the British were able to sneak around the American lines, and the outflanked Americans fled in disarray. During the retreat, the Maryland troops fought their way towards the American fortifications, but were blocked by the swampy Gowanus Creek. While half the regiment was able to cross the creek, the rest were unable to do so before they were attacked by the British. Facing down a much larger, better-trained force, the Marylanders mounted a series of daring charges, which held the British at bay for some time, at the cost of many lives, before being overrun. The Marylanders earned themselves the moniker "Maryland 400," and lost 256 men killed or captured, probably about a third of their total strength. [4]

Hindman's company was spared the worst of the fighting, losing only three men, a fact which drew scorn from other companies. James Hindman was forced to write to the Council of Safety to clear his name, denying the "report [being] spread among Capt. [John Hoskins] Stone's friends that my company the day we were engaged at Long Island, behaved very ill." To the contrary, wrote Captain Hindman, "I have had the vanity to think the company I have had the honor to command have behaved themselves as well as in the service, notwithstanding the dark insinuations that have been thrown out to their prejudice, and will refer to Col. Smallwood for their behaviour and conduct since they have been under his command." [5]

Edward stayed with the army through the rest of the difficult fall of 1776, a series of defeats that saw the Americans pushed out of New York, followed by revitalizing victories at Trenton and Princeton late that winter. When the Maryland troops were reorganized and expanded, he secured a commission as a captain, leading a company in the newly-created Third Maryland Regiment in late 1776. He served as a captain until he resigned sometime in September, 1777. [6]

Returning home, Hindman continued in public service, accepting an appointment as a justice of the peace for Talbot County in July of 1778. He was reappointed in November of 1778 but did not accept it, undoubtedly because he had just been appointed a justice of the Orphans Court. Hindman served on the Orphans Court for one year. In January 1778 he also was appointed Treasurer of the Eastern Shore, succeeding his brothers William and James. Edward resigned after serving for one year. In his private life, Hindman was a wealthy planter, and owned 14 slaves at the time of his death.

Edward Hindman died between March 6, and March 31, 1781, in Talbot County. He left no children. [7]

Notes:

[1] Edward C. Papenfuse, et al., eds, A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature, 1635-1789, Vol I. (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1979), 442-444; Edward Hindman biographical research file, MSA SC3520-1530, 2/11/11/12.

[2] Muster Rolls and Other Records of Service of Maryland Troops in the American Revolution, Archives of Maryland Online, vol. 18, p. 23; Reiman Steuart, The Maryland Line (The Society of the Cincinnati, 1971), 97; Proceedings of the Conventions of the Province of Maryland, 1774-1776, Archives of Maryland Online, vol. 78, p. 68; Mark Andrew Tacyn “‘To the End:’ The First Maryland Regiment and the American Revolution” (PhD diss., University of Maryland College Park, 1999), 33; Journal and Correspondence of the Maryland Council of Safety, August 29, 1775 to July 6, 1776, Archives of Maryland Online, vol. 11, p. 223.

[3] Tacyn, 43; Journal and Correspondence of the Maryland Council of Safety, July 7 to December 31, 1776, Archives of Maryland Online, vol. 12, p. 4.

[4] Archives of Maryland Online, vol. 12, p. 9; Return of the Maryland troops, 27 September 1776, from Fold3.com; Tacyn, 48-73. For more on the experience of the Marylanders at the Battle of Brooklyn, see "In Their Own Words," on the Maryland State Archives research blog, Finding the Maryland 400.

[5] James Hindman to Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer, 12 October 1776, Archives of Maryland Online, vol. 12, p. 345-346.

[6] Compiled Service Records of Soldiers Who Served in the American Army During the Revolutionary War, NARA M881, from Fold3.com; Steuart.

[7] Edward Hindman biographical research file; Will of Edward Hindman, 1781, Talbot County Register of Wills, Wills, Liber JB 3, p. 56 [MSA C1925-3, 1/43/4/22]; Inventory of Edward Hindman, 1781, Talbot County Register of Wills, Inventories, Liber JB A, p. 130 [MSA  S1872-8, 1/43/4/40].

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