Archives of Maryland
(Biographical Series)

Mary Toogood (b.1825 - d.?)
MSA SC 5496-3361
Accomplice to slave flight, Anne Arundel County, Maryland, 1844


On October 31, 1844, Mary Toogood, a freeborn African-American, was convicted by the Anne Arundel County Court of enticing a slave to run away.  A sober and illiterate young woman when convicted, Mary was sentenced to three years in the Maryland Penitentiary and was released on April 30, 1847.

Mary was born in Baltimore City but resided in Anne Arundel County, and was living there at the time of her arrest.  After her release from jail, she returned to Batimore City, at least into the 1860s.

Mary's father Benjamin was born into slavery in 1790.  His mother, Cate,  was a slave belonging to Jerimiah Townly Chase, and his father, Nicholas Toogood, was a free man.  On January 5, 1792 Nicholas bought his son's freedom from Jerimiah Chase for fifteen pounds and immediately granted Benjamin his freedom.  Benjamin was manumitted, or officially freed, on the same day as his purchase.  Record of Mary Toogood's mother has not been found, but presumably she was also free and thus explains why Mary Toogood was freeborn.

Mary possibly married Rezin Boone, a free man, in 1830 in Anne Arundel County.

There is no evidence to explain why Mary was endangering her own freedom to help slaves runaway, and no evidence of other such incidents involving runaway slaves.

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