The Archivists' Bulldog


Vol. 3, No. 1
3 January 1989

Record Series of the Week Ben Primer

Montgomery County:

(Marriage License Applications) 1886-1962 TRANSER 944

(Marriage License Record) 1939-1970 TRANSER 944 (currently inventoried as Marriage License Applications)

(Marriage Returns) 1865-1930, 1961-1963 TRANSER 943

As many of you know, until recently the Archives had no records relating to Montgomery County marriages except for a single film of transcript marriage licenses (1798-1839). The records above should help those seeking Montgomery marriage information. The (Marriage Returns) are minister's returns of marriage licenses with information recorded on the back as to minister's name, title, church, date and place of marriage, and names of parties. The front of the license records name, place of residence, age, race, marital status, occupation, place of birth and blood relationship (if any) of the two parties. The returns are currently in yearly bundles. 1865-1869 have been arranged by month, usually fewer than ten per month.

The (Marriage License Applications) provide the same information indicated above. They also

include the signature of the applicant and in many cases consent forms signed by parents are tipped into the books (thus providing the only information on parents in state marriage records). These books are individually indexed from 1902-1941.

The (Marriage License Record) uses a copy of the marriage license application with recorded information from the minister's return added below to serve as a marriage record. All of this series is indexed and parental permissions are sometimes attached to this record rather than to the license applications.

What should patrons do? If they are uncertain about dates and names, they should probably go to the Montgomery County Circuit Court clerk. If they have a good idea about dates, they should use the (Marriage Returns) for 1865-1902, the (Marriage License Applications) for 1902-1939, and the (Marriage License Record) for 1939-1970. If one of the parties is under age (which varies over time for each sex), both the license applications and the license record should be checked for parental consent forms between 1939 and 1962. Don't forget about the (Marriage Record, Index, Counties) for the 1914-1930 period which is a fast way to look for a marriage in that time period.

Index of the Week Pat Melville

Index to Chancery Depositions

Maryland Historical Magazine, Vol. XXIII, pp. 101-54, 197-242, 293-343, contains an "Index to Chancery Depositions, 1668-1789," by William Francis Cregar and Dr. Christopher Johnston. Another copy of the index is separately bound and appears in the library.

The index provides references to depositions that appear in government records and some manuscripts. The depositions have great potential as a genealogical resource because they give the ages of the deponents. Depositions may also contain information regarding occupation, residence, and familial relationships.

This deposition index is less than self explanatory. To begin with, the title chancery depositions is misleading. In addition to chancery records, the index contains references to civil proceedings, probate records, land records, council proceedings, and private manuscripts. The given date span, 1668-1789, should really be 1640-1796. The index entries resemble Hodges' marriage references in that the information may be erroneous, unclear, or enigmatic. Each entry may contain seven elements. First is the deponent's name; some names were incorrectly transcribed. Next appears, if known, the county of residence and occupation of the deponent and any familial relationships. Fifth, the age of the deponent is given, prefaced by aet., which is an abbreviation of aetatis which means of age. Sixth, the year of the deposition is provided. Seventh, the reference(s) is cited.

These references are often difficult to convert into the Archives' standard citations. References to county records are prefaced by the name of the county, then the volume citation and page number. References to provincial and state records include only a volume citation and page number; no indication of agency is given. Some references cannot be deciphered, at least at the present time. Sometimes the page number is incorrect. When this happens, one should check the page before or after the cited page. Usually the name can be found this way.

Listed below are the citations found in the depositions index, followed by the Archives' standard citation. The word unknown refers to the mysterious entries. The first group of citations is listed alphabetically by the index entry for provincial and state records; the second group alphabetically by county.


Index Entry Citation [MSA Citation]

1774 - 1783 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 13]

1784 - 1786 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 14]

1787 - 1789 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 17]

MD Archives [Archives of Maryland]BB [Provincial Court (Judgment Record) BB]

BT 1 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 9]

BT 4 [Provincial Court (Land Records) BT 4]

BT I [Unknown]

CD [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 1]

Com. BK. M [Governor & Council (Proceedings) M]

Council Bk. 18 [Governor & Council (Proceedings) CB]

Council Bk. 20 [Governor & Council (Proceedings) CB]

Council Bk. M [Governor & Council (Proceedings) M]

DD 1 [Unknown]

DD 2 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 11]

DD J [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 10]

FF [Provincial Court (Judgment Record) FF]

Gray Papers [Unknown]

HD 2 [Governor & Council (Proceedings) HD 2]

Hill Papers [Unknown]

IR 1 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 4]

IR 2 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 5]

IR 3 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 6]

IR 4 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 7]

IR 5 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 8]

JJ [Provincial Court (Land Records) JJ]

LO ii [Land Office (Patent Record) 2]

MD Archives [Archives of Maryland]

MD Gazette [Maryland Gazette]

OK [Unknown]

Old Kent [Old Kent by George A. Hanson]

Original Papers [Unknown]

Parron Papers [Unknown]

P [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 2]

PCR (1658-1662) [Provincial Court (Judgment Record) S]

PL [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 3]

Rec. Lancr. Co., VA [Unknown]

Rec. Westmd. Co., VA [Unknown]

S [Provincial Court (Judgment Record) S]

SSH C [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 18]

Test. Proc. [Prerogative Court (Testamentary Proceedings)]

TL [Provincial Court (Land Records) TL 2]

VA Magazine [Virginia Magazine - not at MSA]

VA Mag of H & B [VA Mag. of History & Biography - not at MSA]

VD [Provincial Court (Judgment Record) VD 1]

Vestry Bk., PG Par [PG Parish (Vestry Minutes)]

Wills [Prerogative Court (Wills)]

WK 1 [Chancery Court (Chancery Record) 12]

WR [Provincial Court (Land Records) WRC 1]


AA IB 1 [AA Court (Land Commissions) IB 1]

AA IH 3 [AA Court (Land Records) IH 3]

AA IT 5 [AA Court (Land Records) IT 5]

AA RD 2 [AA Court (Land Records) RD 2]

BA AL C [BA Court (Land Records) AL C]

BA AL K [BA Court (Land Records) AL K]BA B L [BA Court (Land Records) B L ]

BA B O [BA Court (Land Records) B O]

BA B P [BA Court (Land Records) B P]

BA Court Record [BA Court (Proceedings) F 1]

BA HW 2 [BA Court (Land Records) HW 2]

BA HWS 2 [BA Court (Land Records) HWS 2]

BA HWS 3 [BA Court (Land Commissions) HWS 3]

BA HWS 4 [BA Court (Land Commissions) HWS 4]

BA IS G [BA Court (Land Records) IS G]

BA IS I [BA Court (Land Records) IS I]

BA Rec. [unknown]

BA Reserv. [unknown]

BA Resurvey [unknown]

BA TR A [BA Court (Land Records) TR A]

BA WG G [BA Court (Land Records) WG G]

BA WG Y [BA Court (Land Records) WG Y]

BA WG NN [BA Court (Land Records) WG NN]

BA WG 51 [BA Court (Land Records) WG 51]

BA Wills i [BA Register of Wills (Wills) 1]

CH i [CH Court (Court Record) A]

CH iv [CH Court (Court Record) E 1]

CH v [CH Court (Court Record) F 1]

CH vii [CH Court (Court Record) H 1]

CH viii [CH Court (Court Record) I 1]

CH ix [CH Court (Court Record) K 1]

CH xxii [CH Court (Court Record) A 2]

CH xxvi [CH Court (Court Record) Q 2]

CH xxxii [CH Court (Land Commissions) M 2]

CH xxxv [CH Court (Court Record) P 2]

CH xxxvi [CH Court (Court Record) Q 2]

CH xxxvii [CH Court (Court Record) R 2]

CH xxxviii [CH Court (Court Record) T 2]

CH xxxix [CH Court (Court Record) 1741-1744]

CH xl [CH Court (Court Record) Y 2]

CH xli [CH Court (Court Record) 1747-1748]

CH xlii [CH Court (Court Record) 1749-1750]

CH xlvii [CH Court (Court Record) B 3]

CH xlviii [CH Court (Court Record) D 3]

CH lix [CH Court (Court Record) P 3]

CH lx [CH Court (Court Record) Q 3]

CH A [CH Court (Court Record) A]

CH Index Book [unknown]

CH R [CH Court (Court Record) R]

DO O 2 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 2]

DO O 4 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 4]

DO O 5 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 5]

DO O 6 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 6]

DO O 8 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 8]

DO O 11 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 11]

DO O 14 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 14]

DO O 18 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 18]

DO O 20 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 20]

DO V 8 [DO Court (Land Records) Old 8]

FR H [FR Court (Land Records) H]KE x [KE Court (Land Records) JS 16]

KE xii [KE Court (Land Records) JS 22]

KE 13 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 23]

KE xiv [KE Court (Land Records) JS 24]

KE xv [KE Court (Land Records) JS 25]

KE xvi [KE Court (Land Records) JS 26]

KE xvii [KE Court (Land Records) JS 27]

KE xviii [KE Court (Land Records) JS 28]

KE xxi [KE Court (Land Records) DD 2]

KE xxii [KE Court (Land Records) DD 3]

KE xxiii [KE Court (Land Records) DD 4]

KE xxiv [KE Court (Land Records) DD5]

KE A [KE Court (Proceedings) A]

KE DD 1 [KE Court (Land Records) DD 1]

KE DD 2 [KE Court (Land Records) DD 2]

KE DD 4 [KE Court (Land Records) DD 4]

KE IS 10 [KE Court (Land Records) JS X]

KE JS 10 [KE Court (Land Records) JS X]

KE JS 16 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 16]

KE JS 18 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 18]

KE JS 22 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 22]

KE JS 23 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 23]

KE JS 25 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 25]

KE JS 26 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 26]

KE JS 28 [KE Court (Land Records) JS 28]

KE JS N [KE Court (Land Records) JS N]

KE JS NW [KE Court (Land Records) JS NW]

KE Lib. B, Court Proc. [KE Court (Proceedings) B]

KE M [KE Court (Land Records) M]

KE NW [KE Court (Land Records) NW]

KE Wills i [KE Register of Wills (Wills) 1]

PG AA [PG Court (Land Records) AA 2]

PG BB 1 [PG Court (Land Records) BB 1]

PG BB 2 [PG Court (Land Records) BB 2]

PG EE [PG Court (Land Records) EE]

PG M [PG Court (Land Records) M]

PG NN [PG Court (Land Records) NN]

PG PP [PG Court (Land Records) PP]

PG pp. [unknown]

PG Q [PG Court (Land Records) Q]

PG RB 2 [PG Court (Land Records) BB]

PG Rec. [unknown]

PG RR [PG Court (Land Records) RR]

PG T [PG Court (Land Records) T]

PG Y [PG Court (Land Records) Y]

QA RT 1 [QA Court (Land Commissions) RT 1]

QA RT 2 [QA Court (Land Commissions) RT 2]

QA RT 3 [QA Court (Land Commissions) RT 3]

SM Wills TA 1 [SM Register of Wills (Wills) TA 1]

TA Land Comms. [TA Court (Land Commissions)]

Vol. 3, No. 2
9 January 1989

RECORD SERIES Robert A. Oszakiewski

Baltimore County Court (Convict Records) 1770-1774, 1783 COAGSER 309

Anne Arundel County Court (Convict Records) 1771-1775 COAGSER 57

Throughout the 17th and 18th centuries, British officials faced severe overcrowding in prisons, particularly after the Jacobite rebellions of 1715 and 1745. Beginning with the reign of James I, the British began to transport prisoners to colonies in the New World. At first, most went to Jamaica and the West Indies, but very shortly convicts were sent to the North American colonies, in particular Maryland and Virginia. While solving, at least temporarily, the problem of what to do with a growing prison population, transportation also presented the planter class with a source of fairly cheap labor.

The exact number of convicts brought into Maryland between 1634 and 1775 is impossible to determine. Peter Wilson Coldham, in Bonded Passengers to America, gives a figure of 50,000 convicts coming into Maryland. Basil Sollers, "Transported Convict Laborers in Maryland during the Colonial Period", (MHM, 2:17-47, 1907), suggests a much lower figure of between three and twenty thousand. J. Thomas Scharf, in History of Maryland, estimates "at least twenty thousand". Walsh and Fox indicate 12,600 convicts and servants arrived between 1766 and 1775. Robert Hughes, in The Fatal Shore, says 90,000 convict servants reached the American colonies between 1717 and 1776.

Once here, convict servants tended to run off, as evidenced by the numerous advertisements in the Maryland Gazette for runaway convict servants and by the frequent extensions of servitude found in various county court minutes. What became of most of these prisoners once they had served their terms is uncertain. One former convict, David Benfield, established a fairly large medical practice; presumably most joined the laboring class or went elsewhere.

While the large planter class, and after 1760 the owners of early Baltimore County ironworks, welcomed the continued importation of convict labor, the general reaction of small planters who could not easily afford convicts, was strongly negative. As early as 1676, the General Assembly passed "An Act against the importation of Convicted colonists" requiring ship masters to give an oath that no servant on board was a convict. If there were a convict on board, the Master of ship was ordered to transport him out of the province or face a fine of 2000 pounds of tobacco. This law was overturned by the British Attorney General and later laws, passed over the protest of the large planters, seem to have had little or no effect.

These colonial laws became moot with Parliament's passage of 4 George I C.XI to deal with the hundreds of prisoners already in British jails and the hundreds more created by the failure of the Jacobite rebellion of 1715. Noting the "great want of servants" in the colonies, the Act ordered that anyone convicted in a British court of offenses within the benefit of clergy (non-capital crimes) be transported for a term of seven years. Those convicted of capital crimes and granted a commutation of sentence would serve fourteen years.

This act brought protests by the colonists as reflected in a complaint recorded in Provincial Court Judgments PL #7, noting that the convicts already imported into the colony had "debauched a great number of formerly innocent honest citizens and committed diverse...crimes very rarely known." The economic and social effects of convicts on the colony, such as the spread of diseases like typhus, were also enumerated. This protest ordered the sheriffs of the counties to lock up all convicts in county jails until their masters were able to give security in the sum of 30 pounds of tobacco. Chapter 23 of 1728 noted that masters of ships were still neglecting to bring transcripts of convict trials which were to be deposited with the county clerks. Without these testimonials, disputes over convict's terms of servitude frequently arose.

Chapter 22 of 1769 directed that, after 1 October 1770, that masters of ships that brought convicts into Maryland deliver a certified transcript of the conviction and related proceedings to the purchaser of the convict servant, who would in turn deliver it to the clerk of the court of the county the purchaser lived in. The clerk would then record the transcript into a separate record kept for that purpose only, with the name of the felon entered in an index in the volume. The clerk was subject to a ten pound fine for every name omitted from this index. The Baltimore County Convict record does not have such an index, either because one was not created or was lost.

The convict records for Baltimore and Anne Arundel Counties are similar in their content, although with a few stylistic variations. Each gives a brief transcript of the conviction and the transportation order. In the transcript the name of the felon, both actual and any aliases, are given, along with the name of the presiding judge, and the court where the trial was held. The name of the London merchant who was granted the monopoly for transporting convicts to America by the British Treasury Office is also given.

The outbreak of the American Revolution did not bring an end to the transportation of convicts to America. A final shipload of convicts arrived in Baltimore in 1783. The convicts sold at that time are recorded in the Baltimore County Convict Record. A second shipload of British convicts arrived in Baltimore later that year but this time was turned away. The transportation of convicts continued to be a concern of the early national government. A congressional resolution of 16 September 1788 urged the states to pass laws to prevent the transportation of convicts to the United States. Chapter 138 of 1809 finally made the importation of convicts into Maryland illegal, with the captain of the ship bringing a convict subject to a one- to five-year prison term. By this point, the Australian penal colonies had been founded, providing a place for British prisons to send their excess populations.

There are several other records that hold information regarding convicts in colonial Maryland. Provincial Court (Land Record) PL #5 has a listing of convicts brought over on the Goodwill, noting that 19 convicts died in transit. Provincial Court (Land Record) TP #4 contains a similar list, giving the name of the convict servant, the purchaser, and the date of the sale. Both of these references may be found in Index 137. References to convicts being bought and sold may be found in Anne Arundel and Baltimore county land records, often giving a value for a particular convict. A brief survey of Queen Anne's, Baltimore, Anne Arundel, and Cecil county court minutes and proceedings found several references to convict servants being recorded as belonging to a particular owner or having their time of servitude extended.

There is also a Talbot County (Convict Record) 1727-1733 COAGSER 1855, but this is actually a criminal record, recording the names of individuals charged with and paying fines for fornication.

There are several ways for a researcher to gain access to the records discussed in this article. Index 78, Anne Arundel County Convict Records Index 1771-1775, indexes the one volume of Anne Arundel Convict Records. Indexes 70 and 74, to Anne Arundel County Land Records Miscellany, have several references to convicts and convict servants. A brief survey of other county land record indexes did not reveal any references to convicts or convict servants. Index 137, Provincial and General Court Deeds, General Index 1658-1815, and Index 136, Provincial Court Judgments Index to Plaintiffs, 1658-1778, reference convicts, convict servants, Jacobite rebels, and individual convicts names. Index 106, Maryland Gazette

Annapolis Items Index 1745-1820 specifies several convict ships, convict servants, and runaway convict servants, and may be of use as a starting point. Further lists of convict servants may be found in J. Thomas Scharf History of Maryland, Vol. I, pages 384-386, listing Scottish rebels brought over on the ship Friendship, as well as giving the name of the purchasers. Frank White published a list of convicts in Maryland Historical Magazine, 43: 55-60, 1948. A patron may also be directed to Peter Wilson Coldham's Bonded Passengers to America, Volume I which discusses the history of transportation to the American colonies, and the British laws which established it.

These records would be of most use and interest to the genealogists, but they would also be of use to researchers looking at legal-social history.

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 78 - Anne Arundel County (Convict Record-Index) 1771-1775

This is a name index to the convict record described above. The index is arranged alphabetically by name, and includes not only the names of convicts, but also of court officials (judges, clerks, justices of the peace) involved in the transport and of Maryland planters purchasing the convicts. The index gives the date of the order to transport and the place the order was issued as well as the page citation in the record book.

Vol. 3, No. 3
17 January 1989


D103 - Bowie Family Papers (1683-1929) [includes D79]

G1011 - Oden Bowie Papers (1859-1872)

The Bowie Family Papers, the gift of Mrs. W. Booth Bowie in 1938, are principally the private papers (largely business) of Col. William Duckett Bowie (1803-1873). The items from 1683-1830 are related to land transactions (patents, deeds, surveys, leases, mortgages, land commissions, judgments) or probate (including the Belt, Bowie, Duckett, Duvall, Odell, Tyler and Waters families). After 1830, the collection consists of correspondence, mostly regarding business affairs) [2 boxes, 1 oversize box], cancelled checks (1834-1864) [1 box] and receipts (1796-1874) [2 boxes].

The strength of this collection is its focus on the business management of an antebellum plantation in Prince George's County. There is information on tobacco and wheat cultivation and sale, horse training and racing, slavery (sales, runaways, whippings-including one death) and on the socio-economic role of landed gentry in that time. There is an account book for 1805-1822 [probably of Bowie's father William Bowie (of Walter)], letters from Bowie's son, Oden, written from Mexico during the Mexican War, and information on sales of pews to support a new building for Queen Anne Parish. Also of interest are a speech on secret societies by Benjamin G. Harris, handbills on saddlers, magazines and the Union Ticket, an annual report of the House of Refuge and information on Maryland soils and guano (including tables of quality issued by the Office of State Inspector of Guano). Financial records include information on the Patapsco Female Institute and St. Mary's College of Baltimore.

The Oden Bowie (1826-1894) Papers, given by Secretary of State Oden Bowie in 1977, relate principally to Bowie's service as director and president of the Baltimore and Potomac Railroad. Two volumes of "Executive Proceedings" from Bowie's term as governor (1869-1872) are volumes missing from the Governor (Minutes), STAGSER 1074. For more information on Oden Bowie see Frank. F. White, Jr., The Governors of Maryland 1777-1970.

Vol. 3, No. 4
23 January 1989

Record Series of the Week Ben Primer

ADJUTANT GENERAL (Enrollment Record)

1862-1864 STAGSER 352

This series encompasses two separate enrollments for the draft in 1862 and in 1864. Every able-bodied male citizen between the ages of 18 and 45 was enrolled for the draft. Those 20-45 were liable for the draft, but one could volunteer between the ages of 18 and 55, and 16-17 year-olds could volunteer with parental consent.

The records are arranged first by county, then by year of enrollment and finally by enrollment district. For the 1862 enrollment, the enrollment district corresponds with the county election district. For Baltimore City enrollment districts follow Ward and Precinct boundaries, one district per precinct. For many counties (AL, BA, CA, CH, DO, HA, MO, PG, TA) there are surgeon's exemptions for the 1862 draft. For other counties (BA, CR, FR, TA) there are exemption books for foreigners (including country of origin) and for reasons of age as well as medical causes. For BA there is a list of draftees for 1862.

For the 1864 enrollment the county divisions are by military districts which include several election districts, but these reports almost always distinguish between election districts. For Baltimore City there is generally an enrollment district return for each precinct which are combined into a military district return for each ward. There may also be commander's returns for each ward as well. Again the ward-level returns usually distinguish between precincts.

The 1862 enrollment, made under order of the War Department, is arranged for each district by first letter of last name. It includes place of residence, age, occupation and various remarks regarding current service in the military, government, or essential occupation (fire, police, ambulance, etc. that merited exemption), desertion to the Rebel army or fitness for service. Names exempted for the draft for whatever reason (fathers of motherless children, sons of aged/destitute parents, those supplying substitutes in advance of the draft) are marked out. Those drafted generally have a red D by their names. Some areas may not have been subject to the draft having fulfilled their quota through volunteers who received bounties ($100 per year of enlistment, paid in installments). Draftees did not receive bounties nor did substitutes. In general substitutes could not be eligible for the draft (i.e. they usually were aliens who had not made declarations of intention, veterans, turncoat rebels or slaves of rebels). The draft was for one year.

The 1862 enrollment was used for a 100-day draft order issued by the Governor in 1864. A list of those draftees may be found under (Draft Record). Those who actually were drafted and subsequently not exempted for some reason is found in the city and county lists of draftees which follow the BC enrollments.

The 1864 enrollment, provided for under Chapter 284 of the 1864 Laws of Maryland, includes the same information as in 1862, but those drafted are not indicated in the individual enrollments. By this time virtually all "hardship" exemptions were eliminated. Whether this enrollment was actually used for the draft is uncertain since none of the draft records refer to these enrollment books.

The fact that an individual was drafted does not prove service. The 1864 draft list, for instance, indicates many who either did not answer the call or were found unfit for service for a variety of reasons. For 1862 the actual service of draftees is unclear.

Beyond its obvious usefulness in providing information about adult males during this time (especially about their military service and loyalty), the two enrollments would seem an excellent means to find adult males in the 1860 and 1870 census since the names here are arranged roughly in alphabetical order. The 1864 enrollments group virtually everyone in a county or ward into a single book with election districts and precincts indicated which should take the careful researcher to the right place in the census assuming the individual did not move.

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 59 - Chancery Court (Chancery Records-Index) 1668-1807; 1817-1851

Chancery Court (Chancery Records) were first indexed by the Land Office (1903-1910). It produced a 14-volume (Chancery Records, Index) which is in the state agency series. This index covers the first 37 volumes of (Chancery Records), running to 1797. Vowel indexes were prepared for each volume. If errors are found in citations for these 37 volumes, a patron could be referred to these original indexes.

Beginning in about 1936 and running at least through the 1950s, the Land Office converted these volume indexes to cards and added cards for volumes 38-69 and 105-180 [except for 127A&B which are (Appeal Bonds)]. Volumes 70-104 (1807-1817) have never been indexed. This is unfortunate because the records contain cases for which we do not have original papers. There is an index to case names in each of the unindexed volumes, however.

The index includes names of persons, ships, streets and tracts of land. For many tracts the acreage is given. Names are somewhat problematic in that there is no guarantee that all citations for a particular name are for the same person. Similarly, the location (normally a county but often city names and places out of state) given on the card may not be to all citations on the card. Dates are also difficult; they may refer to the date of the case itself, but they may also refer to the date of the document which is being presented as an exhibit in the chancery case a number of years later. Finally the reference itself is troubling. The early cards indicate chancery volume numbers in parentheses followed by the liber number (clerk's initials and number). Later references are indicated by the B (for Book?) citation.

Most citations give some information about the nature of the record itself: petitioner, complainant; defendant; commissioner; public office (e.g. sheriff, justice of the peace); witness; creditor; debtor; trustee; marriages; deaths; guardianships; appraisals, accounts, depositions, subpoenas; bills; land transactions; sales; contracts; etc.

Vol. 3, No. 5
6 February 1989

Record Series of the Week Ben Primer

Adjutant General (Descriptive Roll) STAGSER 325

The (Descriptive Roll), sometimes referred to as the Company Descriptive Book, is a bound company level record kept by the company clerk regarding the roster of the company. The books include lists of officers and non-commissioned officers including date of appointment, rank and changes in status; lists of transfers, discharges, deaths and desertions for the unit with detail about each; and descriptive rolls for all enlistees including age, height, complexion, color of eves and hair, place of birth (town or county), occupation, date, place and length of enlistment, enlisting agent and remarks (generally regarding previous enlistments, desertions, transfers, discharges or deaths).

The Archives has only two of these volumes (most presumably are at the National Archives) for companies A and F of the Purnell Legion (1861-1864). Recruited for three years by William H. Purnell, Baltimore City postmaster, in the fall of 1861 at the Pikesville Arsenal, the legion was a combined arms force including nine companies of infantry, two companies of cavalry and two batteries of light artillery. When Purnell resigned in February 1862, the combined arms legion was dissolved and separate infantry, cavalry and light artillery units resulted. Company A was recruited in Baltimore City; Company F in Baltimore County.

While these are the only roll books we have, please remember that there are descriptive rolls and other company level papers providing similar kinds of information that may be found in (Civil War Muster Rolls and Service Records).


Susan Cummings reports that there is a List of Taxables for Baltimore County in the (Proceedings) for 1692 which is arranged by hundred. The citation is Liber F, folio 225.

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 60 - Chancery Court (Chancery Papers - Index to Litigant Names) 1713-1851

Index 60 provides access to names of all litigants (individual and corporate) in the Chancery Papers. The papers begin as early as 1713 (based on information in the 4000 papers already entered into dBase for the Chancery Papers Project), although there are few before the Revolution.

The litigant's surname appears at the top center of each card. Names are grouped (e.g. Allen, Allan, Allyn will all appear on the same card). Below the surname are four columns of information. Column 1 sometimes provides given names for the two parties. It also indicates cases involving estates and insolvent debtors, usually with the county involved. Column 2 provides the surname of the second party, except for cases involving estates and debtors in which case this column provides the first name of the part. These first names are found among the E's for estates and the P's (petitioner) for the insolvent debtors. The third column provides the case number. Column four indicates where the papers are recorded in the (Chancery Record). Most citations indicate that papers are not recorded, but my random sample indicates that a number of these are indeed recorded, so patrons should be advised to consult Index 59 if they are interested in the recorded copy (which is on film and usually easier to read). I cannot attest to the completeness of recorded cases.

Vol. 3, No. 6
13 February 1989

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 61 - Chancery Court (Chancery Papers-Index to Tracts) 1713-1851. Includes Tracts in Chancery Records for 1790-1799.

Index 61 is an alphabetical index to tract names found in the Chancery Papers. The typical citation includes the county and case number(s).

Most tracts found in (Chancery Records) are indexed in Index 59. For some unknown reason, tracts found in Volumes 19-37 (1790-1799) of the (Chancery Records) have been filed in this index. There are also a few anomalous entries outside of the date span.

The general rule for tracts in (Chancery Records) then is that one should consult both Index 59 [1668-1790; 1799-1807; 1817-1851] and Index 61 [1790-1799].

Vol. 3, No. 8
27 February 1989

Library Libations Ben Primer

Richard assigned me a letter which required use of the Benson tract maps for Somerset (G1427-499) and Worcester (G1427-437) counties [both available on film M-1018]. After spending a good half hour looking for tracts on the 40-50 tissue paper maps in the collection, which are getting torn through regular use, I finally located two of the five tracts.

I mentioned the difficulty of using these to Doug, and he told me about three new volumes in the library [2/1/1] by Ruth Dryden on the land records of Somerset, Worcester and Wicomico counties to 1810. Dryden uses the present location of the land as her county designation. Using patents, land records, wills, tax lists, rent rolls, the federal census, atlases and printed sources, Dryden provides for each tract its original patent information, its citation in Benson's tract maps, its rent roll information, its transfers by sale, subdivision or will to 1810 (and often beyond), its resurveys and who was assessed for it in 1783. Unfortunately she provides only the year of the transaction, not a citation. The value of land records for family history is readily apparent by looking at almost any citation in these volumes.

Dryden provides useful hints about information found in the records in her introduction. The books are arranged alphabetically by tract name with an index to all individuals found in the back of the book. The Somerset and Worcester volumes include reduced copies of the Benson tract maps which some patrons may find difficult to read.

Given the condition of the Benson maps, Doug and Nancy have decided to restrict their circulation. Patrons should be referred to the Dryden volumes or the microfilm.

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 47 - Oaths of Fidelity Index, 1778

[Available on Microfilm M977-M979]

Oaths of Fidelity were taken before a magistrate in each county by free males over the age of 18. Returns were made to the Governor and Council and most returns are arranged by magistrate. In addition, some returns are recorded in the records of the county courts as provided in the law. For some unknown reason, the Baltimore County (Minutes) 1772-1781 list of those not signing the oath is included in this index. This single item is arranged by hundred and includes only those in the Census of 1778 who did not take the oath. For more information on the oaths themselves see Bulldog, Vol. 1, No. 10.

The index is arranged alphabetically by name. Cards provide a county and a citation. Many of these records are indexed elsewhere, and I have indicated those as follows: # - indexed in Gaius Marcus Brumbaugh, Maryland Records: Colonial, Revolutionary, County and Church (2 vols.); * - indexed in Margaret Roberts Hodges, Unpublished Revolutionary Records of Maryland (vols. 3, 5, 6); @ - indexed in Gaius Marcus Brumbaugh and Margaret Roberts Hodges, Revolutionary Records of Maryland-Part I; & - indexed in Calendar of the Maryland State Papers: The Red Books; ^ - indexed in Louise Joyner Hienton and Helen White Brown, 1778 Oaths of Fidelity, Prince George's County, Maryland. All sources should be checked because interpretations of names vary.

What Is in Index 47?

Anne Arundel County:

Maryland State Papers (Red Books) 19:83-84; 21:7; 22:1-5, 25-30. Returns for John Dorsey&, Thomas Dorsey&, Samuel Harrison&, Samuel Harrison, Jr.&, Richard Harwood, Jr.&, Thomas Harwood&, Samuel Lane&, Reuben Meriweather&|, Elijah Robosson&|, Thomas Worthington of Nicholas&|

|Original returns for these are also found (but not indexed) in AA (Oaths of Fidelity)

Baltimore County:

Governor and Council (Oaths of Fidelity). Returns for James Buchanan*, Jesse Bussey [Dorsey?]*, James Calhoun*, Edward Cockey*, Hercules Cowetenay [Courtney?]*, John Cradock*, Richard Cromwell*, Frederick Decker*, John Hall*, John R. Holliday*, John Beale Howard*, Jeremiah Johnson*, George Lindenberger*, William Lux*, John Merryman*, John Moale*, George Gouldsmith Presbury*, Charles Ridgeley of William*, Benjamin Rogers*, Peter Shepperd*, Robert Simmons*, Thomas Sollers*, William Spear*, Isaac Van Bibber*

Baltimore County Court (Minutes) 1772-1781, Non-jurors for the following hundreds: Back River Lower, Back River Upper, Baltimore West, Deptford, Delaware, Gunpowder Upper, Middle River Lower, Middle River Upper, Middlesix, Mine Run, North, Patapsco Upper, Pipe Creek, Soldiers Delight, Westminster

Calvert County:

Governor and Council (Oaths of Fidelity). Returns for William Allnut*, John Bond*, Samuel Chew*, Isaac Clare*, Charles Grahame*@, William Ireland*, Richard Parran*, Daniel Rawlings*, W. Smith*

Caroline County:

Caroline County Court (Oaths of Fidelity). Indexed as Land Records A. Returns for Charles Dickinson*, Henry Downes*, Matthew Driver*, Thomas Hardcastle*, Peter Harrington*, William Harrington*, Thomas Wynn Lookerman*, Richard Mason*, Nathaniel Potter*, Neal Price*, Peter Richardson*, Benson Stainton*

Cecil County:

Cecil County Court (Oaths of Fidelity). Returns for Amos Alexander|, Richard Bond|, Thomas Bouldin|, Joseph Gilpin|, Stephen Hyland|, John Leach Knight|, Samuel Miller|, Tobias Rudulph|, John Dockery Thompson|, John Ward Veazey|, John Ward [Veazey?]|

|Original returns for these are also found (but not indexed) in Maryland State Papers (Series Z-Scharf Papers) available on microfilm M-3218.

Charles County:

Maryland State Papers (Blue Books) 5:24, 27-38

Charles County Court (Oaths of Fidelity) X#3 [these are indexed only if not found in (Blue Books)]. Returns for Joseph Anderson*, Richard Barnes*, George Dent*, John Dent*, William Dent*, Samuel Hanson*, Walter Hanson*, William Harrison*, Daniel Jennifer*, Walter Hanson Jennifer*, John Lancaster*, John Parham*

Joshua Sanders*, Robert Young*

Dorchester County:

Governor and Council (Oaths of Fidelity). Returns for John Dickinson, Thomas F. Eccleston*, William Ennalls*, Robert Harrison*, Thomas Jones*, Benjamin Keene*, Henry Lake*, James Murray*, James Shaw*,

Frederick County:

Frederick County Court (Minutes) March 1778. Includes only those signing oath after February 28, 1778 under provisions of revised law.@

Harford County:

Governor and Council (Oaths of Fidelity). Returns for Mordecai Amos*#, Robert T. Amoss*#, John Archer*#, William Bond*#, Aquila Hall*#, Thomas Johnson*#, John Love*#, James McComas*#, Samuel Groome Osborne*#, Aquila Paca*#, William Smithson*#, Abraham Whitaker*#

Montgomery County:

Governor and Council (Oaths of Fidelity). Returns for Gerrard Briscoe*@, Edward Burgess*@, Oneas Campbell*@, William Deakins, Jr.*@, Charles Jones*@, Samuel W. Magruder*@, Joseph Offutt*@, Richard Thompson*@, Elisha Williams*@, Joseph Wilson*@, Thomas Sprigg Wootton*@

Prince Georges County:

Governor and Council (Oaths of Fidelity). Returns for Joshua Beall#^, James Beck#^, Willaim Berry#^, Fielder Bowie#^, Thomas Boyd#^, Thomas Clagett#^, David Craufurd#^, Thomas Gantt, Jr.#^, Benjamin Hall#^, Richard Henderson#^, George Lee#^, Christopher Lowndes#^, William Lyle, Jr.#^, Thomas Macgill#^, Alexander Howard Magruder#^, James Mullikin#^, Truman Skinner#^, Osborn Sprigg#^, William Lock Weeks#^, Thomas Williams#^

Queen Anne's County:

Queen Anne's County Court (Oaths of Fidelity). Indexed as Bonds, S.T.W.#1 Returns for James Bordley, W. Bruff, Charles Downes, John Fisher, T. Johnson, James O'Bryon, Samuel Ridgaway, Jacob Ringgold, Turbutt Wright

Somerset County:

Maryland State Papers (Blue Books) 5:17-23, 25. Returns for John Span Conway, Gillis Polk, John Stewart, Joseph Venables, Peter Waters, Levin Wilson, William Winder

Talbot County:

Maryland State Papers (Blue Books) 5:6-13. Returns for Henry Banning*, John Brano(?)*, Joseph Bewley*, Jonathan Gibson*, Howes Goldsborough*, Thomas Harrison*,

What's Not in Index 47, but indexed elsewhere and available at the Maryland State Archives?

Not indexed here but indexed in the Chronicles of St. Mary's, Volume 4, No. 7, pp. 40-47 are items in the Maryland State Papers (Series Z-Scharf Papers). I could not locate these items in Scharf, but they are on film, M-3218.

St. Mary's County:

Maryland State Papers (Series Z-Scharf Papers). Returns for Robert Armstrong, Richard Barnes, Bennett Biscoe*, Ignatius Fenwick, Jr., Vernon Hebb, John Ireland, Jeremiah Jordan, Henry Reeder, John Reeder, John Shanks, Henry G. Sothoron, Jenifer Taylor, Henry Tubman, Robert Watts

The following items are indexed in Brumbaugh and Hodges, Revolutionary Records of Maryland, Part I and in Hodges, Unpublished Revolutionary Records. These are also in the Scharf Papers on M-3218.

Frederick County:

Maryland State Papers (Series Z-Scharf Papers). Returns for John Lawrence@*

Washington County:

Maryland State Papers (Series Z-Scharf Papers). Returns for John Barnes@*, Samuel Barrits@*, Andrew Bruce@*, Christopher Cross@*, Joseph Chaplin@*, John Collars@*, Richard Davis@*, Samuel Hughes@*, Andrew Rentch@*, Henry Schnebely@*, Joseph Sprigg@*, John Stull@*, William Yates@*

What's available, but not indexed?

The following are not indexed anywhere in Archives collections as far as could be determined:

Cecil County:

Maryland State Papers (Series Z-Scharf Papers). See film M-3218. Returns for John Cox, Samuel Glenn, Elihu Hall, Timothy Kirk, James Maxwell, David Smith

Queen Anne's County:

Queen Anne's County Court (Oaths of Fidelity Certificates). These are oaths taken after February 28, 1778.

Most of the printed sources cite other oaths taken by public officials that may be found in Test Books, Court Minutes, the Maryland State Papers and the Charf Papers which should not be overlooked. Remember that public officials had to take the same oath before taking office.

See also the following:

Dieter Cunz, "The Baltimore Germans and the Oath of Allegiance in 1778," in 25th Annual Report of the Society of the Germans in Maryland.

Richard A. Overfield, "A Patriot's Dilemma: The Treatment of Passive Loyalists and Neutrals in Revolutionary Maryland," in Maryland Historical Magazine, 68:140-159.

Albert Levin Richardson, "The Oath of Fidelity in Talbot and Dorchester Counties," in Maryland Original Historical Research Society of Baltimore Bulletin, No. 3, pp. 106-119.

Hester Dorsey Richardson, "The Oath of Allegiance in Maryland, Compulsory Oath Not an Evidence of Patriotism," in Maryland Original Historical Research Society of Baltimore Bulletin, No. 3, pp. 78-85.

Frank F. White, Jr., "The Oaths of Allegiance for St. Mary's County, Maryland," National Genealogical Society Quarterly, 41:69-74, 119-124.

Vol. 3, No. 9
6 March 1989

Record Series of the Week Ben Primer

Maryland's Revolutionary Bounty Lands

By Chapter 8 of the Laws of October 1777 the General Assembly provided that a 50 acre bounty (plus cash, provisions, tax exemption, pardon for crimes, and public assistance for family) would be given to any soldier who enlisted and served three years (time of service if injured or killed) in the Continental Army. Recruiting officers received either 100 or 50 acres if they enlisted 20 men by dates specified in the law.

The Assembly reserved lands for this purpose in Chapter 20 of the Laws of 1781. Not until 1787 did the legislature get around to having the reserved lands surveyed by Francis Deakins. Deakins surveyed 4155 50 acre lots in Washington County (now Allegany and Garrett counties) and identified 323 families already living on 636 of these lots.

Chapter 44 of the Laws of 1788 provided for appointment of Commissioners to see to the distribution of the lots. The families already settled on lots would be given preference for those if they paid a fair market price set by the Commissioners. A land patent would issue for those lands. Next the 2475 soldiers/recruiters or their heirs who had been declared eligible by the Auditor General would be awarded lots southwest of a northeast line running from the intersection of the Potomac and Savage Rivers to the western Maryland border (all now in Garrett County). Lots northeast of the river intersection to western boundary line would be distributed to officers who were to receive four lots each to be contiguous if possible. All other land (including leftover lots) could be patented according to normal procedure. The plats and records of the Commissioners were to be transferred to the Land Office. No patent was necessary for bounty lands, and thus the lot ledgers became the official Land Office records of these lands.

The Archives has the following records related to bounty lands:

Governor and Council:

(Military Lots Ledger) A & B

This is Deakins description of the lots. Liber A includes list of lands patented or warrants issued prior to the passage of the 1781 reservation of lands. Deakins' survey, which accompanied this ledger, is available as MdHR G1427-793 [original]; MdHR G1427-773 [a photostat]; MdHR G1427-900 [a modern version of Deakins map, undated]. The Deakins maps were replaced in the 19th century under Chapter 322 of the Laws of 1874 and Chapter 18 of the Laws of 1896. One of these is available as MdHR G1427-394 and MdHR G1427-431 [both Allegany, the latter with modern tract names added] which we sell in the lobby. Several 1935 plats based upon Deakins also exist: MdHR G1427-382 [Garrett, also sold in the lobby and available on photostat in MdHR G1427-609] and MdHR G1427-608 [mostly Allegany tracts].

(Settlers and Purchasers Lots)

Deakins' list of settlers and lots claimed by them. Together with the ledgers they provide a reasonably good list of those who had settled in what is now Allegany and Garrett counties by 1788.

Commissioners for Reserve Land Westward of Fort Cumberland:

(Settlers and Purchasers Lots) pp. 1-86

1789 list of settlers entitled to preemption of lots and lot value.

(Bounty Land Soldiers)

A rough alphabetical list of officers with their rank and lots assigned by lottery followed by a rough alphabetical list of soldiers with their rank, regiment and lot assigned. This is the list most often sought to prove Revolutionary War service.

Land Office:

(Military Lots Ledger)

Deakins' ledger A with subsequent land transactions related to the lots (1788-1851) and ledger B with same (1788-1867).

(Settlers and Purchasers Lots)

Pp. 1-86 (1789-1867) has subsequent land transactions related to lands of settlers entitled to preemptions

Pp. 87-89 (1793) is a list from the Treasurer of the Western Shore of those entitled to preemptions who actually purchased lots.

Pp. 91-100 (1793-1891) is a list of lots retained and sold by the state [presumably leftover lots] and subsequent land transactions on those lots.

(Lots Westward of Fort Cumberland)

1793-1903 ledger arranged by lot number indicating to whom the lot was originally granted or sold and subsequent information on escheats and patents. It is similar to the ledgers but without the metes and bounds description available there.

For more information on these lots see John Kilty, The Land-Holder's Assistant and Land-Office Guide (1808), pp. 342-350 and John M. Brewer and Lewis Mayer, The Law and Rules of the Land Office, Chapter 8. The latter includes the bounty land soldiers plus an alphabetical list of patents created from the military lots (both by those entitled to preemption and by subsequent purchasers).


A patron recently pointed out that the 1830 United States Census does not include Montgomery or Prince Georges counties.

Chris Allan reports that the Oaths of Fidelity in the Scharf Papers are still at the Maryland Historical Society. We borrowed them to film a few years back which explains our film of these. He says they are indexed at the Society.

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 46 - (Census Index), 1776 and 1778

This is an index to the Censuses of 1776 and 1778 (see Bulldog, Vol. 1, Nos. 8-9 for details on these series. As far as can be determined, the only Census of 1776 record not indexed is Middlesex Hundred for Baltimore County which is in the Scharf Papers. The names of individuals found in the Baltimore County census who did not take the oath of fidelity in 1778 may be found in Index 47, not here.

The index is arranged alphabetically by name and includes race if given, county, hundred and a citation. Hundreds/parishes listed below are indexed. Those indicated by an asterisk are also indexed in Gaius Marcus Brumbaugh, Maryland Records: Colonial, Revolutionary, County and Church (2 vols.)

Council of Safety (Census of 1776):

AA - All Hallows*, St. James*

BA - Deptford

CA - Bridge Town*

DO - Nantacoake*, Straight's*, Transquakin*

FR - Elizabeth*, Georgetown*, Lower Potomack*, Northwest*, Sugarland*

HA - Broad Creek*, Bush River Lower*, Deer Creek Lower*, Harford Lower*, Spesutia Lower*, Susquehannah*

PG - Prince George's*, St. John's*

QA - Town*, Upper-Kent Island*, Wye*

TA - Bay*, Mill*, Tuckahoe*

Caroline County (Census of 1778) [indexed as Land Records A] - Bridgetown, Great Choptank, Tuckahoe

Charles County (Census of 1778) [indexed as X#3] - Benedict*, Bridgetown*. Bryan Town*, Durham Lower*, Newport Lower*, Newport Upper*, Pomonkey*, Port Tobacco East*, Port Tobacco Town*, Port Tobacco Upper*, Port Tobacco West*, William and Mary Lower*, William and Mary Lower*

Queen Anne's County (Census of 1778) [indexed as Bonds W.S.T.#1] - Chester, Island, Kent Island Lower, Kent Island Upper, Town, Tuckahoe, Walsey, Worrell, Wye

Vol. 3, No. 10
13 March 1989


McParlin Papers - G 595

Given to the Hall of Records in 1963 by Guy Weatherly, archivist, the McParlin Papers can be roughly categorized into three groups of records: papers of the Faris family, 1763-1818, papers of the William McParlin family, 1799-1844 and finally, papers belonging to Dr. Thomas A. McParlin, surgeon in the United States Army, 1846-1897.

The Faris family papers consist of leases and deeds pertaining to part of Lot 61 in Annapolis and the folksy diary of the irascible Annapolis innkeeper, watchmaker, portrait painter and jeweler, William Faris. Excerpts from the diary, 1792 through much of 1804 are reprinted in the Maryland Historical Magazine, 28 (1933). A photocopy of the original sheets for those years and the original manuscript for 1803 is part of the McParlin Collection. William Faris' Account Book, 1800-1804, and an arithmetic workbook complete the first category.

William Faris (1728-1804) was born in London and came to Annapolis about 1757. Within a few years he was running an inn, acting as jeweler, was married and had sub-leased part of the St. Anne's glebe land from William Reynold. This was the part of Lot 61 that bordered on West Street and had been formerly occupied by a silversmith, William Philip Syng of Philadelphia. By 1798, under Faris' occupation it consisted of a one story brick house and outbuildings. Faris had four sons, but only one, Charles, seems to have been interested in following his father's occupation - the others went to sea. Charles and his father had two shops between 1792 and 1800. An entry in the 1799 diary says that "Charles arrived with the boy," William McFarland [McParlin] born in County Down, Ireland. At the instigation of their uncle, William and his two brothers left their mother and sister in Ireland to find fortune in Philadelphia. It was William who found his trade as an apprentice jeweler and watchmaker in Maryland's capital.

Charles Faris died in 1800 and William Faris in 1804. Before the year was passed William McParlin, with the approbation of the widow Faris and daughters, succeeded to the Faris business. By 1817 McParlin owned the house and land stretching over 111 feet on West Street, just beyond the Circle. His place of business by 1810 was over the Farmers National Bank where William Faris had formerly plied his trade. It was here that Cassandra Hilleary Beall Woodward McParlin (1800-1865) of Prince George's County, niece of William Faris' widow, and her husband William McParlin raised their six children.

Thomas Andrew McParlin (1827-1897) was the first surviving son and fourth child. He graduated from St. John's College and was a student at the medical school of the University of Maryland. In 1847, during the Mexican War he passed examination by the Medical Examining Board for the U.S. Army. In the spring of 1848, he was contracted as assistant surgeon for troops embarked for Vera Cruz. It is impossible to detail McParlin's military career which spanned the continent before the "War of the Rebellion" (his words) even began. He went from Pennsylvania to Kentucky, Arkansas, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, New Mexico, California, Oregon, and Washington territory, stopping in almost every fort, camp and barracks including most of Texas between 1850 and 1861. His services were largely employed in fighting yellow fever, Asiatic cholera and smallpox among troops and civilians alike, but he seemed to have time to enjoy the military social life with those like Col. Robert E. Lee.

Army doctors also took on townspeople as private patients in the areas where they were stationed. McParlin himself treated Kit Carson's 17 year old daughter and a "colored woman" in the service of Gen. Zackary Taylor' daughter. While at Las Vegas, New Mexico in 1849-1850, McParlin was present at an engagement with the Jiccarella-Apaches. (U.S. forces led by Ambrose Burnside). In 1858 he was sent with New York troops to Walla Walla in Washington territory where the Nez Perce and Spoken Indians were creating disturbances and "remained on the Pacific coast" until 1861 when he returned East. By 1861 he had married Alida Roca of Texas.

During the Civil War he served in Chicago organizing medical supplies. He was transferred from Chicago to the Army of Virginia where he served until September 1862. From that time until December 1863 he was Medical Director of the U.S. General Hospitals in Annapolis at the Naval Academy, St. John's and Annapolis Junction (Laurel). While there he treated not only prisoners from Richmond and Andersonville but also the wounded from Antietam and Gettysburg. It was from his comments on Annapolis that I recall his description of one of his staff doctors from Germany insisting on tents being placed on the banks of the Severn River so that convalescent soldiers could recover more quickly from depression. After Annapolis he was Medical Director of the Army of the Potomac until the end of the War. According to McParlin, he was

largely responsible for creating a medical staff and organizing facilities and supplies that moved quickly when demands of battle made this a necessity. A letter signed by P.H.

Sheridan states that the system of "Hospitals established by Dr. McParlin was admirable".

The bulk of the McParlin papers (over 500 folders) consists of Thomas A. McParlin's letters to his mother and brother, his wife Alida, and later to his daughters. He wrote as a proper Victorian son, father and husband from every place his letters could be posted. After 1886, he wrote to Alida, his eldest daughter who married a son of the de Elguera family of Lima, Peru. There is no way to know how this large collection, which also includes McParlin's medical notebook, his 1862 military notes, his unpublished memoirs (1853-1891), military telegrams, photographs, his commissions (1863-64), military maps and a U.S. Army Medical Director's flag came to Mr. Weatherly. Undoubtedly they were saved by McParlin's daughter(s), most probably Alida de Elguera.

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 65 - (Assessment of 1783 - Index to Property Owners), 1782-1783

This is an alphabetical index to names to all property owners assessed. The index cards include county, hundred, names of tracts of land and whether individuals were paupers or single males as provided in the law.

The Archives has assessments for the following counties and hundreds. Most of the originals are in the Scharf Papers, although some are in the boxes of assessments at the end of the series.

AA - Annapolis, Broad Neck, Elkridge, Elkridge Landing, Herring Creek, Huntington, Lyons Creek, Magothy, Middle Neck, Patapsco, Patuxent, Road River, Severn, South River, Town Neck, Upper Fork and Bear Ground, West River

BA - Back River Lower, Baltimore East, Delaware Lower and Upper, Deptford, Gunpowder Upper, Middle River Lower, Middle River Upper and Back River, Middlesex, Mine Run, North, Pipe Creek

CV - First, Second, Third Districts

CA - Lower Choptank, River, Upper Choptank Districts

CE - First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth Districts

CH - First, Second, Third, Fourth, Fifth, Sixth, Seventh Districts, both General and Land except for Sixth which is Land only

DO - Lower, Middle and Upper Districts, both General and Land

HA - Broad Creek, Bush River Lower, Bush River Upper and Eden, Deer Creek Lower, Deer Creek Middle, Deer Creek Upper, Gunpowder Upper and Lower, Harford Lower, Harford Upper, Spesutia Lower, Spesutia Upper, Susquehanna

KE - First (Lower Langford Bay and Eastern Neck), Second (Chestertown and Upper Langford Bay), Third (Chester and Worten), Fourth (Morgans Creek and Lower South Sassafras), Fifth Districts, both land and property for each.

MO - Linganore and Sugar Loaf; Lower Newfoundland, Rock Creek and North West (general and land); Middle Potomac, Lower Potomac and Georgetown (general and land); Sugarland and Upper Potomac; Upper Newfoundland and Seneca; Upper Potomac

QA - Corsica, Island, Tuckahoe (Wye and Tuckahoe Hundreds), Upper (Eton and Chester Hundreds) Districts

SO - Dividing Creek, Great Annamessex, Little Annamessex, Monokin, Monye, Nanticoke, Pocomoke, Princess Anne, Rewastico, Wicomico

TA - First (Bay and Mill), Second (Island, Tuckahoe and Kings Creek), Third (Bolingbroke and Third Haven) Districts, both general and land for each

WA - Cumberland and Upper Town; Fort Frederick, Linton, Upper Antietam and Jerusalem; Lower Antietam and Sharpsburg; Marsh; Salisbury and Conocheague; Wills Town, Sand Creek, Skipton, Murleys Run and Elizabeth

WO - Acquango, Boquenorton, Buckingham and Worcester, Mattapox, Pitts Creek, Pocomoke, Queponco, Snow Hill, Wicomico

Vol. 3, No. 11
20 March 1989

Library Libations Doug McElrath



The library is often a good place to start when a patron asks, "How can I find the present location of this tract of land?" Few published sources fully answer this question, but they can provide some helpful shortcuts in the quest for Richardsonian perfection in land title research. The following list is by no means complete; please let me know when you come across titles that you find useful in this regard.


Robert Barnes, "Land Records," Notebook of the Baltimore County Genealogical Society, 4(June 1988): 1-3. [18-4-5]

Excellent bibliography that covers published sources for patents, county land records, and assessments.

T.J. Gleason, Tracing the Ownership of Property in Baltimore City: A Beginners Guide Baltimore: Society for the Preservation of Federal Hill, 1970. [10-1-2]

Particularly useful for Baltimore City research. Includes a glossary of frequently-used terms in land records.

Maryland Historical Trust, Researching Maryland Buildings, (MHT Guides to Historic Preservation Activity, Guide No. 3), Annapolis: Maryland Historical Trust, n.d. [5-4-3]

Helps the researcher interested in determining the age of a building. Identifies the different types of records that aid in land research.


Jane Baldwin, Calendar of Maryland Colonial Wills, 8 Vols., Baltimore: Kohn & Pollock, 1904-1928. [REF A and 3-1-2]

Indexes all tracts named in Prerogative Court wills from 1635 to 1743.



Margaret Durst Culper, Early Allegany County Records, 1877-1812 Volume II: Abstracts of Land Records-Deed Book A 1788-1795 and Real Estate Tax Lists 1804-1812, Cumberland: Cresap Chapter NSDAR, 1966. [3-1-1]

Index by proper names only, tract names mentioned in abstracts and transcription of tax list.

Mrs. Jesse M. Kave et al., Allegany County, Maryland Records, 1795-1806 Volume V: Abstracts of Land Records, Deed Books B, C, D, Cumberland: Cresap Chapter NSDAR, 1969. [3-1-1]

Indexed as above.


Ailene W. Hutchins, Calvert County, Maryland: Early Land Records, Prince Frederick: The Author, 1982. [3-1-1]

Transcriptions of the General Court and Court of Appeals land abstracts volumes. Indexed by both tract names and proper names.

Charles Francis Stein, A History of Calvert County, Maryland, Baltimore: The Author, 1960, 1976. [REF D and 9-4-6]

Index includes tract names for land belonging to some of the county's "great" families. Dust jacket has simple map showing general location of some.


Eleanor F. Horsey, Origins of Caroline County, Maryland From Land Plats, Vols. 1 & 2, Denton: The Author, 1974, 1981. [9-4-6]

Numerous tract maps for specific localities. Volume I has a chapter entitled, "The Land-Plat Method of Research." Only the index to Vol. 2 includes tract names.


Lorain Alexander et al., Land Patents of Cecil County, Maryland, Silver Spring: Genealogical Society of Cecil County, 1986. [3-1-1]

In alphabetical order by tract name, provides citations to patents and certificates of survey. Rumor has it, they are working on a tract map too!


James A. McAllister, Jr., Abstracts from the Land Records of Dorchester County, Maryland, 33 Vols. Cambridge: The Author, 1960-1975. [10-4-3]

Indexed by tract names and proper names. Covers the years 1669 through 1860.

Calvin W. Mowbray, The Early Settlers of Dorchester County and Their Lands, 2 Vols., The Author, 1981. [10-4-4]

Tract names indexed, some plats of individual tracts. Entries include patent citations and subsequent ownership information from rent rolls.


"Early Land Surveys and Patents in Garrett County, Maryland," Glades Star 1(June 1944) and following issues. [17-3-1]

No index and no apparent order.


Louise Heinton, Prince George's Heritage, Baltimore: Maryland Historical Society, 1972. [10-3-2]

Index includes tract names. In back is map showing location of tracts patented before 1696.


Russell R. Menard, "A Tract Map for St. Mary's County in 1705," Chronicles of St. Mary's 21(May 1973):261-272 [17-2-5]

Map now in map collection. Article has list of tracts arranged by hundred.


Ruth T. Dryden, Land Records of Somerset County, Maryland, San Diego: The Author, 1985. [3-1-1]

In alphabetical order by tract name, indexed by proper names, Benson tract maps in appendix. Each entry provides a partial chain of title showing changes in ownership.


R. Bernice Leonard, Talbot County, Maryland Land Records, St. Michaels: The Author, 1987. [3-1-1]

Abstracts first two volumes of TA land records. Index includes tract names.


Ruth T. Dryden, Land Records of Wicomico County, Maryland 1666-1810, San Diego, The Author, 1988. [3-1-1]

Same as SO volume except there are no tract maps.


Ruth T. Dryden, Land Records of Worcester County, Maryland 1666-1810, San Diego: The Author, 1987. [3-1-1]

Same format at SO volume.

Record Series of the Week Phebe Jacobsen

(Assessment of 1783)

Chapter 6 of the Laws of Maryland, November Session 1782, titled an "Act to Raise Supplies for the year Seventeen Eighty Three," was only one in a series of supply acts enacted during the Revolution to pay expenses of the military. The first of these, implemented in 1777, radically altered the tax structure Maryland had used since its establishment. Dr. Ronald Hoffman in A Spirit of Dissension explains:

Prior to 1776 two separate tax bases were employed in Maryland. Land was the basis for Proprietary dues, while provincial and county taxes were raised by poll tax.

The quitrent system had lined the pockets of the Calverts and their agents who often charged owners more than four shillings per hundred pounds. The provincial revenue officers and county officials who collected sums from property owners sometimes also benefitted.

There was much dissension and debate during the first year of the new government over taxes and legal tender. Under the proprietor, all persons were taxed equally. In the Assessment of1783 not only did the government issue paper money of little value, but persons in the new state were to be assessed the actual value of their property. Moveover, "property" by 1783 included not only land but also condition of the land and of "houses, buildings and other improvements thereon," including "the circumstances and advantages" of the land. All were to be valued according to rates of other property within the same county.

Commissioners of the Tax were appointed by the legislature for each county and they were carefully instructed. Guidelines for property valuation was spelled out in the eleven printed pages of Kilty's Laws.

This tax extended to personal property such as slaves according to age, black cattle, horses and even crops. Rates were set at 25 shillings per hundred pounds of property (real and personal) to be paid in current (meaning Maryland paper) money. All persons who had property not above 10 pounds in value were declared paupers and not taxed. Special provision was made for debtors and creditors and close supervision was required of all commissioners, clerks and collectors charged with management of the law. All free, able bodied males between 21 and 50 who did not have sufficient property to be taxed were nonetheless to be subject to a 15 shilling assessment. They were required to give security that they would pay and hence single males can be identified in the assessment by the security provided by another individual.

J. Thomas Scharf found these records valuable enough to add them to his collection. Two decades ago the index to the "Assessment of 1783" (See Bulldog, Vol. 3, No. 10) was made under the supervision of a young graduate student, Gregory Stiverson, who had also realized the continuing value of them.

Vol. 3, No. 12
3 April 1989

Library Libations Shashi Thapar

Periodical Source Index (PERSI) 1987, edited by Michael B. Clegg and Curt B. Witcher. Fort Wayne, Indiana: Allen Public Library Genealogy Department, 1988 [404; Loc: Reference before the family histories]

We have just received a copy of the Periodical Source Index to help patrons find articles concerning family history, biographies, military records, cemetery records, etc. This will be a helpful reference tool for genealogists, family history researchers and the staff.

PERSI is a comprehensive index by place, subject and surname to current genealogical and local history periodicals. It is divided into five sections under United States places, families, Canadian places, other foreign places and research methodology. This is an index of articles only.


A few weeks ago the record series focused on (Enrollment Record) for the civil war draft. Daniel D. Hartzler in Marylanders in the Confederacy has indexed these for those listed as "gone South," "gone to Dixie," or "in the rebel army." He does not give a full citation, nor have all the records been indexed given my sampling of the work. He does provide county information which should narrow the search through these books which are arranged alphabetically by first letter of last name.

Bernie is in the process of accessioning the Washington County birth and death records which recently were transferred to us. He reports that these records (1898-1925) contain information on births and deaths of people residing in Washington County as well as those who died there. Deaths of Washington County residents that occur in Baltimore or other counties (and even out of state) are recorded. There is also a volume of disinterments which lists names and death dates back to 1797.

Index of the Week Ben Primer

Index 38 - Prince Georges County (Certificates of Freedom and Slave Statistics - Index to Owners, Slaves, Blacks Freed or Born Free), 1805-1869

Index 38 is probably the best of the "Freedom Records" indexes in that it provides name access to both white owners and blacks for all records. The cards for certificates include name, age, complexion, how freed or if born free, date of the certificate, family relationships and the reference. The slave statistics cards provide age, by whom declared, military service if any, election district of owner and reference.

The following records are indexed:

PG Court (Certificates of Freedom) 1806-1829 MdHR 6196

PG Register of Wills (Certificates of Freedom)

1820-1852 MdHR 6197

PG Register of Wills (Certificates of Freedom, Original) 1831-1863 MdHR 16,640

PG Circuit Court (Slave Statistics) 1867-1869

MdHR 6198, 6199


The following items were added in March:

Caroline County Clerk Collection: City of Denton Plat, D 2079

Kelmscott Bookshop Collection: Isabella C. Jones Account Book of Freight and Expenses, P 2080

Kelmscott Bookshop Collection: Our Police: A History of the Baltimore Police, P 2081

Minnesota Historical Society Collection: Maryland Governor's 1904 Thanksgiving Day Proclamation, G 1904

Eleanor Cook Collection: Montgomery County Levy List and List of Taxables, G 2083 (xerox copy, copy also with county records)

St. Anne's Protestant Episcopal Church Collection: St. Anne's Church Architectural Drawings, 1920's-1980's

Sarah D. and Clyde Griggen and Margatet Thibault Collection of Goldsborough Family Papers: Original papers of Goldsborough and Henry Families of Talbot County, 18th and 19th century, D 2085

Lynne W. Vosloh Collection: North Central Railroad Stock Certificate Collection, P 2086

Harris Auction Galleries Collection: Key Family Documents, P 2087 (includes James McHenry Letter)

Dublin United Methodist Church Record Collection: Family Membership Record, 1957-1987, D 2088 (on film M 5774)

Dr. Brice Marden Dorsey Collection: Caleb Dorsey's Tract Maps of Howard County and the South Side of the Severn River, G 2089 (to be placed in map collection)

Vol. 3, No. 13
10 April 1989


Revolutionary Papers in Special Collections

Note: There are many collections covering the Revolutionary period in the Maryland Archives. Collections ordinarily consist of patents, deeds, wills and papers saved by the family for financial reasons. The documents listed below contain comments or result from activities of the war itself. Since this list is a subjective one there may be other material in the collection pertaining to the Revolution.

Although the collection number is indicated, researchers are advised to examine the inventory made of the collection before using it. Documents comprising the larger collections were often brought to the archives in several deposits. Each of these deposits were given an identifying number on receipt. As a consequence, a collection was sometimes made up of more than one accession (deposit) number and eventually shelved under one of the numbers making up the collection.

The Special Collection numbers that follow are accompanied by the number of items or folders in the total collection. These are followed by selected documents for the Revolutionary period. Photocopies are noted, otherwise documents are original.

Booth Papers, Special Collections 310. Total folders 23. 1766-1840. For Revolutionary material see correspondence of Rev. Bartholomew Booth, Rev. James Craik, John Luckett, Robert Morris, Robert Henry Lee and others.

Claude Papers, Special Collections 36. Total folders 18. 1780-1810. Letter John J. Jacob from Hillsborough N.C. after Battle of Camden 1780.

Department of Legislative Reference. Special Collections 378. Total folders 51. Copy of Petition of Inhabitants of Cecil County to G.A., March 1779.

Dorsey Collection, Special Collections 387. Total 350 items 1695-1839. Includes Dowson papers, 1765-1854. Latter contains correspondence, business and financial, of Annapolis merchant, from 1778-1785, who left for Cambridge hoping to continue his business enterprise. He failed in both towns and died in Cambridge in 1791. His wife tried to carry on the business which was closely tied to Wallace, Johnson and Muir, particularly the latter partner. See also wife's comment on Congress 1784.

Dowsett Papers, Special Collections 732. Total of 160 folders. Items 172-174 are copies of The Gentlemen's and London Magazine for 1784.

Duvall-Duval Papers, Special Collections 680. Total folders 125. 1694-1836. Journal of Gabriel Duvall covering his Revolutionary offices in Maryland government; family genealogy. Photostats.

Galloway Papers, Special Collections 167. Total items 7. All dated 1774 and pertain to the Revolution. Includes Samuel Galloway's correspondence with his brother, Steven Stewart, Andrew Leverson, and William Byrd. Several pertain to the ship Peggy Stewart.

Gist Papers, Special Collections 190. Total of 654 folders. 1790-1940. 25 folders relate to the War, most are original but some copies. Mordecai Gist's letters include correspondence with Thomas Johnson, George Chalmers, "Coffee House" letters to George Washington (1775); his wife Polly, and William Smallwood.

Gough Papers, Special Collections 82. Dates covered: 1695-1852. Total folders 14. Folder 11 includes a court order to present Association to every freeman in lower St. Mary's Hundred, August 1775.

Hall Papers, Special Collections 131. Total of 9 items all photostats. Dates covered: 1774-1896. Copy of letter John Galloway to his brother, October 20, 1774. Thomas Ringgold to "Dear Sir", October 25, 1774; both regarding burning of the Peggy Stewart.

Hanson Papers, Special Collections 349. Total folders 89, dating 1676-1890. About 10 folders concern the Hanson family during the Revolution. Also a copy of Committee minutes from Kent County, 1775; original commissions, Thomas Sim Lee, 1776, George Hanson, 1777, Robert Harris, 1778; order for pay Col. Samuel Hanson, 1777; letters to Gov. Lee, 1780; Dr. Thomas from John Hanson, Philadelphia, 1782 and others. Most original.

Harford County Historical Society, Special Collections 162. Total of 960 folders, 1677-1905. Letters from Revolutionary period, 1777-1784 are contained in at east 10 folders. Some concern Mark Alexander, 1774-1784; others concern delivery of George Chalmers papers, 1775; description of drummer's cloak and cap.

Hemphill Papers, Special Collection 563. Notes taken in 1950 by John Hemphill on his studies of Annapolis and Maryland, particularly information on confiscated British property and Maryland loyalists.

Louise Joyner Hienton, Special Collection 1004. Includes the following publications: Rieman Stewart, A History of the Maryland Line in the Revolutionary War, 1775-1783 published by the Society of Cincinnati of Maryland, 1969. Carl Van Doren, Secret History of the War of the American Revolution, An Account of the Conspiracies of Benedict Arnold and Numerous Others Drawn from the Secret Service Papers of the British Headquarters in North America, New York, (1941). W.E. Woodward, Lafayette, New York, (1929).

Hollyday Papers, Special Collections 534, mf. Total of 303 folders, 1707-1893. The Revolutionary gems include James Hollyday, the Declaration of Rights and the Constitution of Maryland, 1776 (fld. 303); Samuel Purviance, Chairman of Committee of Baltimore from Charles Lee, April 1776 (fld. 147), copy of Resolution of Convention of Maryland on bills of Exchange (fld. 295), etc. Inventoried but no chronological arrangement.

Maryland Inn Collection, Special Collection 766. Total of 18 folders, all photostats. Revolutionary records including pay roll for Capt. Joshua Stevenson's Co., 1777, receipt for clothing, and list for repairing muskets, 1778.

[Janer] Moss Collection, Special Collections 121, 136, 204, 384. Includes naval signals used by Continental vessels 1778, letters concerning meeting of Episcopal clergy in Annapolis, and Chestertown, 1784; letters regarding situation of Maryland Battalion (1776), muster roll of Scott's Co., etc. Inventory sheets essential.

[James] Moss Collection, no accession number. Includes bookplate of Anthony Stewart, pay voucher for Robert Yates, 1784, 4 quartermaster receipts issued for supplies to Continental army (n.d.). These are the only original items pertaining to the Revolution in this very large collection.

Pennsylvania Historical Society, Special Collections 110. Composed of 10 items neatly inventoried, these documents date from 1778-1796. Collection includes correspondence of Maryland notables with Pennsylvania or Continental officials, some on official business. The list of correspondents is made up of the following names, Gabriel Duvall, James McHenry, Daniel of St. Thomas Jenifer, Thomas Stone, Daniel Carroll, John T. Mercer, Thomas Sim Lee, Luther Martin, Robert Harrison and Charles Carroll of Carrollton.

Ridout Papers, Special Collections 358. total folders 713 dating 1709-1839. The collection contains the usual family records pertaining to Ridout, Ogle, Tasker, Gibson and related families in Maryland and England. Of particular interest is correspondence of Gov. Horatio Sharpe and his protege and secretary, John Ridout in Annapolis between 1774-1789. Also contains letters between the Ridout women. Because the documents were received in separate parcels there is no chronological inventory. See in particular folders 77, 85, 580. Originals and copies.

Scoussat Papers, Special Collections 561. Total of 12 folders. Photostats of letters 1774-1775. Ebenezer Hazard's proposals for collection of American State Papers; Francis Hopkinson to T. Jefferson, 1784 regarding Philosophical Society and politics; Charles Carroll of Carrollton suggested amendments to Articles of Confederation, 1787.

Thomas Papers, Special Collections 176. About 500 folders, dating 1681-1810. For Revolutionary period, military commissions, acts rejected by Assembly, printed report on the Convention to ratify the Constitution (1787) and other acts of the Assembly pertaining to the War effort.

Vol. 3, No. 14
17 April 1989

RECORD SERIES Phebe Jacobsen

The Enumeration Bill and Census Records

The Constitution of the United States said nothing about a Federal Census. But Article 2, Section one, of that document provided that an enumeration of inhabitants be made every ten years thereafter. This was necessary so that representatives to Congress and direct taxes could be properly apportioned. For the first time in history according to Carroll P. Wright in his Annals of Congress, there would be a systematic means of periodically establishing the correct number of inhabitants of a country. Male and female citizens were to be counted as well as indentured servants. In addition, 3/5 of all other persons were to be numbered, excluding Indians.

The first enumeration did not come about without effort, nor did the writers of the Constitution expect it would. Three years were allotted Congress to be done with the enumeration. Political careers and popular elections were at stake. The need to know the number of inhabitants was a basic need of the new Republican Government.

Drafting an enumeration act was part of the business of the House of Representatives in the first Congress meeting in New York in 1789. Proceedings of that Congress at this time were a bit sketchy, so we do not know all that was said and took place. Early in the second session of the first Congress -- January 11, 1790 -- the House of Representatives gave attention to unfinished business. Benjamin Goodhue of Massachusetts complained when faced with the uncompleted enumeration bill. Goodhue had been on the original committee, as in all probability had Ariel Foster of New Hampshire. Goodhue felt the bill was a difficult one, and perhaps the committee should be enlarged to include representatives from all the States, each knowing best the enumerator's problems within his own state. So seven new members were added to the old committee and all states except Delaware, North Carolina, and Rhode Island, were represented. Among the committee members was Joseph Seney of Queen Anne's County, a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and a subscriber to Washington College in Chestertown.

On January 18 Ariel Foster, seemingly the committee chairman, presented the enumeration bill to the House to be read for the first time. The following day, after a second reading, the bill was ordered to a Committee of the Whole.

Nine days later on February 2, the House discussed the enumeration bill. Those from New England and the South had most to say. Samuel Livermore, another gentleman from New Hampshire, thought the proposed bill too extensive and threatening to the people. If they answered the marshal or his assistants truthfully, they feared their taxes would multiply. Livermore's next comments indicated there was a place on the schedules for occupations. If one changed occupations with the season, which occupation would the marshal decide should be used to classify the freeman?

Theodore Sedgwick from Massachusetts, once a Yale student with a long political career behind him and ahead of him, understood the

intention of the bill was to specify every class of citizen within the communities of the young nation so that Congress could know the actual state of society -- even the learned professions. James Madison spoke at this point in the debates reminding everyone of the importance of the bill, but admitting the difficulties of gathering information already required without making too many distinctions as to classes of the people. Madison felt, however, that it would be useful for Congress to know as much as possible about the citizenry before it passed more laws regarding agriculture, commerce, and manufacturing when Congress had no facts to go on. Madison did not object to the identification of religious and professional people on the schedules as Congressman Sedgwick wished done. That would make the work more complete. But the Virginian cautioned the congressman that the government was "proscribed from interfering in any manner whatever in matters respecting religion". Madison's warning was supported by Mr. Page, also of Virginia, who thought the people would be suspicious of being asked too many questions. The people would not trust politicians with all this "minutia" which they would not see as beneficial to them. Ever the optimist, Madison's reply to Page was that "the people would suppose the information the government required was for its true object to know in what proportion to distribute the benefits resulting from an efficient general government."

This exchange between members of the House must have resulted in changes and amendments to the original bill. By the end of the day the schedules were agreed upon along with the allowance to be granted the Marshal of Maine. The House bill was then accepted by the House and ordered to be engrossed. Read for the third time the next day, it was ordered to lie on the table. On February 8 the House discharged the Committee of the Whole. All that remained for the members to decide was the length of time necessary for the enumeration to be completed. New Englanders felt a month would be sufficient and the results more accurate if done quickly. But the Southern states, whose territory was more extensive and who were not accustomed to enumeration, needed more time. The House agreed on a six month period, though the time was later extended another three months when the new states of Maine, Kentucky, and Tennessee were added to the final count.

On February 9 the Senate received the enumeration bill from the House and it was read for the first time that day. On the 12th it was read the second time and turned over to a committee of three senators: Oliver Ellsworth of Connecticut, Ralph Izard of North Carolina, and John Henry of Maryland. The latter was a native of Dorchester County, grandson of two Revolutionary War Colonels, a graduate of the College of New Jersey (Princeton), a Maryland legislator and congressman who, before his life ended, would serve briefly as Governor of Maryland. The Senate committee added more amendments, and on February 18 the bill was read before the Senate for the third time with its 29 amendments and returned to the House. Unfortunately we do not know what the 29 amendments contained, but the House eliminated five of them on February 22 to which the Senate receded. The enumeration bill was complete (IUS Stat: 101). A committee of congressmen presented the completed act to President Washington on the afternoon of February 25. The President signed it March 1, 1790, and it was returned to the House the following day as law.

Results of the Enumeration Bill were not startling; but some changes were instituted in the number of representatives, and it surely was a help for those concerned with federal finance.

At the time of the first meeting of the U. S. Congress in 1789 that body had 65 members. After the enumeration, Congress increased its membership to 106. Georgia, who had three congressional members, was reduced to two representatives. Virginia gained nine, more than any other state. Massachusetts increased her representatives by six, North Carolina and Pennsylvania by five, New York by four, Connecticut and Maryland by two, and New

Hampshire, New Jersey, Rhode Island, and South Carolina by one. Delaware remained the same. The new states of Kentucky, Tennessee, and Vermont, included in what we now call the first

census, won two, one, and two representatives respectively.

But generations would pass before the desired information discussed by Madison, Sedgwick, and others of great concern to today's social historians would be included in the Federal Census.

Vol. 3, No. 16
1 May 1989

Record Series of the Week Pat Melville

Divorce Proceedings

Between 1790 and 1842 divorces in Maryland could be obtained only through special acts of the General Assembly. In most cases neither these acts nor the Journals of the House and Senate say anything about the grounds for divorce, custody of children or property rights. In only one area--alimony--was the legislature forbidden to act. Petitions for alimony, with or without a divorce, were heard by the Chancery Court of the county court sitting in equity.

Gradually the General Assembly granted the judiciary a greater role in divorce proceedings. Beginning in 1830 anyone intending to apply to the legislature for a divorce could, but was not required to, file a petition with the county court requesting appointment of a commission to take testimony. The county clerk would send all papers--petition, answer and testimony--to the General Assembly. As far as can be determined, no copies were maintained by the county clerks. The only extant records appear to be equity docket entries and special acts of the legislature.

Beginning in 1842 the Chancery Court and the county courts sitting in equity had jurisdiction to conduct full hearings, including the right to grant divorces, to award alimony and custody of children and to impose property settlements. Since the legislature was not prohibited from doing so, it continued to grant divorces until the Constitution of 1851 expressly forbade this activity. Because the Constitution also abolished the Chancery Court, divorce became an equity procedure handled only by the county circuit courts and the Baltimore City courts.

In Baltimore City the following courts had or have equity jurisdiction:

1851-1853 Superior Court

1853-1867 Superior Court, Circuit Court

1867-1888 Circuit Court

1888-1982 Circuit Court, Circuit Court No. 2

1983-1989 Circuit Court

For divorces granted by the General Assembly see Divorces and Names Changed in Maryland by Act of the Legislature, 1634-1854, by Mary K. Meyer (1970). For more information see Divorce in Maryland (Legislative Council Research Report No. 25, February 1946), Chapter 202, Acts of 1829 and Chapter 262, Acts of 1841.

Vol. 3, No. 17
8 May 1989

Library Libations Shashi Thapar

National Geographic Society. Historical Atlas of the United States: 1988 Centennial Edition [175; Loc: Reference, Letter A]

This is the most complete atlas of United States history combining 530 new maps with text, graphs and illustrations to give you a new view of the American past from 1400 to the present. The Atlas is in the slipcase with 17 regional guide maps and physical map of the United States in portfolio. These guide maps show the modern boundaries, communities and roads.


Federal Money for Loyal Marylanders, 1863-1867

The Archives has recently acquired a new special collections microfilm, M5775, which encompasses the records of the United States War Department, Office of the Adjutant General, Slave Claims Commission. The film is of four volumes relating to Maryland claimants whose slaves enlisted in the Federal forces. In many ways it will probably duplicate some of the data entered on Slave Registers in our Bounty Records; but the volumes from NARA contain far more information on Maryland slave owners and slaves enrollments "en masse" than do the Bounty records, and they are far more accessible.

Recruitment of Maryland blacks began in July, 1863, at the urging of General Schenk of the Middle Division and 8th Army Corps who had seen how anxious Black laborers working on Baltimore fortifications were to enlist. The War Department gave the task of raising Black troops to Colonel William Birney of staunch abolitionist background (son of James G. Birney). Birney had already organized two regiments of Black troops in the District when he enthusiastically entered his work in Baltimore. He went far beyond his mandate in finding recruits. Birney opened jails and no doubt recruited some runaway slaves in addition to Free Blacks. The slave owners and conservative Democrats loudly protested the actions of Birney and his agents though others just as loudly acclaimed him. Lincoln, beset by complaints of Maryland politicians, temporarily suspended all recruitment of Blacks within the state. But on October 1, 1863, the War Department issued General Order 329 which directed recruitment not only of Free Blacks, but also slaves of loyal Marylanders. The "loyal" masters would be paid $300 for each able-bodied slave enlisted in Union service. Moreover, Black soldiers would then be counted as part of Maryland's quota of soldiery due the Union Army. Maryland became the model for other border states as Congress soon passed the Act of February 24, 1864, Sec. 24 (15 Stat. 11). With this latter inducement, Black recruitment was accepted by Maryland. As a matter of record, after the Fourth U.S.C.T. was organized in Baltimore, recruitment of the other five regiments went more slowly particularly as the end of slavery became more certain. Records of this commission, four in number, are listed below.

The "Proceedings of the Board of Claims for Maryland," from December 2, 1863 - June 4, 1864 contains the formulative proceedings of the Commission, meeting in Baltimore, chaired by S. J. Streeter. Problems met by the group concern the loyalty of claimants and the suspension of Manumissions by will and deed. The Maryland Code 1860 Art. 66 Sec. 42 forbade manumissions (with exceptions) and such action was rescinded by Act 1864 Chapter 105 Sec. 42. This Journal is lightly numbered Vol. 20.

The second volume on the film is labeled 22 "Register of Slaves." This is an alphabetical list of slaves by first letter of last name (and any aliases). For each name there is an item code, presumably to the paper files, consisting of the first letter of the owner's surname and a number. The register provides the slaves' regiment and company and the claimant's name.

The third volume "Register of Claims of Maryland Commission" (and the Eastern Shore of Virginia) is numbered 23. It runs from January 22, 1864 to September 1, 1865 (with information on claims payments through late 1865). In the front of the volume is an alphabetical index to claimants with a number for each of their claims. The claims are listed numerically and provide the following: number; date of claim; name, residence and character (loyal or disloyal) of claimant; name of slave; when, where, and by whom slave was enlisted; his regiment and company; the action taken by the Board (amount paid if any and date); remarks (usually on condition of service of slave). The lists contain an amazing number of loyal slaveholders. There are 3,867 claims made, only a small number of them being from Northampton and Accomac County, Virginia. Most are from Baltimore, Talbot, Dorchester, Prince George's and St. Mary's Counties.

The fourth volume labeled "Register of Claims of Maryland Commission," faintly numbered 25, has 376 entries for claims dated December 1, 1866 to April 1867. In fine print on the label there is a notation "Received A.G.O. [Adjutant General's Office], April 19, 1867 of Commission convened by orders dated November 19, 1866 and dissolved by order April 4, 1867." It is similar to the previous volume with later entries. This notation would suggest that the Adjutant General reconvened the Maryland Commission to accept additional claims. A joint resolution of Congress of March 30, 1867 (15 Stat 29) suspended "all further proceedings under Sec. 24 of the 1864 act [which had authorized the Maryland and other border state commissions set up under General Orders] and under Sec. 2 of an Act dated July 28, 1866, (14 Stat 321), and directed the Secretary of War to dissolve the commissions."

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