About James O'Donoghue

I'm a graduate student in 19th Century American literature.

Limerick Roughs: the Political Killing of young John Hubbel

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John Philip Hubbel, son of a German snuff maker and roughly nineteen years old, was shot and killed at a half-past ten o’clock the night of 12 October 1859 in front of Jackson Hall. “The ball entered near the right ear and came out on the left side of the head.” (DE, 14 October) He died only “one hundred and fifty feet from his father’s house” on Constitution Street (Sun, 14 October). Living in Limerick (8th Ward Baltimore), Hubbel made the brash decision to vote the Know-Nothing Ticket in the stronghold of the Democratic Party.

  • Frank Shaw [Francis Sholl], a youth, living on Somerset street, between Chase and Eager streets, met the deceased on Wednesday at the Central police station, and proposed to go to the 11th ward polls; deceased said he was afraid to go there; witness left him and went there, but had not been there long when [Hubbel] came up; heard him say that he had voted in the 11th ward, also saw him at the 10th ward polls; did not know whether he voted there (Sun, 14 October); leaving the latter place after 5 o’clock, deceased going off by himself; heard that he had voted the Know-Nothing ticket; deceased had said that he was almost afraid to go in his own neighborhood, as there were some who had a grudge against him.” (BAnC, 14 October)

  • Miss Chrysenthia Constance of No. 7 McElderry; around 3 pm, a slightly intoxicated Hubbel: “first stopped at the house next door, and called to witness at an upper window in the rear, and told her that he had voted the American ticket;… and like to have been killed, that a young man named Philip Davis offered him a reform ticket at the 8th ward polls, which he refused to take, and then Davis told him that he would kill him on the first opportunity (Sun, 14 October); had not intended to have got tight, but meeting some of his companions they had induced him to drink. [H]e took supper at witness’s house (BAnC, 14 October); witness induced him to remain at the house until 8 o’clock [Sun gives the time as half-past ten]; he told witness that he was afraid to go home (DE, 14 October); witness asked deceased to stay all night, but he said he could not (Sun, 14 October); he had not been [home] since morning, and his mother would be in misery” (BAnC, 14 October); before going he remarked that the man Davis was watching for him, and he expected to be killed” (Sun, 14 October)

  • “Mrs. Catherine Miskelly, …Lives at 55 Front street; heard hallooing, and on looking out of the window saw deceased running; also saw the flash of a pistol and deceased fell; at the time there were four men standing on the corner of Centre and Front streets (DE, 14 October), under the lamp post from whom the deceased was running; when he was shot; they immediately ran away down Centre and back by High.” (BAnC, 14 October)

  • “Mrs. Mary Cox of 46 French street: “the report [of the gun] did not excite any surprise, as they had been shooting in the street all night.” (Sun, 14 October)

  • “Sarah Ann Cape, resides at the northeast corner of High and French streets… was sitting with her daughter awaiting the return of her son, when she was aroused from sleep by the report of firearms from the direction of Centre street (Sun, 14 October); when she went to the door, saw a party of men coming from the tannery toward High; saw three others pass from Front street down High; witness heard some screaming at the house of Mrs. Rock’s (BAnC, 14 October); She saw the deceased lying on the pavement opposite, when she exclaimed, ‘My God, there lies a man dead!’ When she used the expression a man dressed in light clothing passed her house, stopped, gazed in her face, and although she repeated the exclamation he passed heedlessly on. (DE, 14 October)” Cape owned a grocery and the same corner store was the site of Jourdan’s death two years earlier.

  • “Philip [Daley] visited the house of a Mrs. Slee, on Forrest street, near Eager” (Sun, 14 October); Coroner Sparklin with officer Talbott went to Mrs. Slee’s where they learned he lived in Willow Street. Arriving there, “his mother stated that he was not at home” (DE, 14 October).

The next day on the 13th, at his mother’s house, “Thomas alias Philip [Daley] was arrested between ten and eleven o’clock” (DE, 15 October). Thomas Daley was only eighteen years old and born in Ireland. The police arrested Samuel Donohue, nineteen years old, as a witness and at his bail-hearing Nativist politics surfaced. Samuel’s bondsman was James Donnelly, “‘who said he owned eight houses in the eighth ward.’ Judge Henry Stump responded, ‘In Limerick? (Laughter.)'” I have found nothing indicating this case went to trial. Thomas is listed in his father’s household in the 1860 census. This is the last record I have for him.


  • Other witnesses to Hubbel’s murder included: Mrs. Ellen Houseman [Howser], resides no. 44 Front street; Mary Smith, 12 years old, of the corner of Front and Lefferman’s alley; Miss Elizabeth Jackson, daughter of Mrs. Cape; and Eva Bunce of Lefferman’s alley.
  • Judge Stump was removed from office in 1860 because of routine intoxication on the bench, and the frequent laughter from the gallery was cited as an example of the contempt he held for the court.
  • In 1870, Thomas’s brother Hugh Daley was sentenced to six months in jail with John alias Dixon Woods and Barney Barnes, and levied a fine of $50 and costs each, “for assaulting officer James E. Roberts, on Saturday night, 20th instant, on Monument street” (Sun, 29 August 1870).


Baltimore American and Commercial. 14 October 1859. GoogleNews. 

Baltimore Sun. 14 October 1859; 29 August 1870. Proquest.

The Daily Exchange. (Baltimore, Md.), 14 October 1859, 15 October 1859. Chronicling America.

The Removal of Baltimore City Criminal Court Judge Henry Stump, 1860, Maryland State Archives, Govpub Image No: 821075-0001. MSA SC 5339-41-8.


The Fateful Life of Harry Taylor: Murder on the Sparks Farm

B Co. Seventh Dist. p44-45

Alfred Sparks’s farm lies on the road which follows the ridge from Hereford. Here you can see it is to the West of Hereford close by the Schoolhouse where Alfred taught. Atlas of Baltimore County, Maryland. Seventh  District, G. M. Hopkins, Philadelphia, p44-45, 1877.

There were warnings. They knew the illegitimate child had slaughtered two dogs, perhaps when his employer had angered him, as would be the case in the 1898 murder. They knew he killed some calves of Micheal Armacost because they would not go into the stable. He had been hired after he had left the House of Refuge. The African-American community knew there was something in Harry Taylor and it was best to avoid him. Sarah Lee had lunch with Taylor and Morris two days before. And even then she could tell Taylor held alot of rage within. The lunch was completely silent.

At around seven in the morning on the 16th of June 1898, the men headed into the thick woods to fell and load timber to make ties for the nearby railroad. Despite the hour, Taylor cracked jokes and appeared ready for the long day. They were going to load the wagon and drive it North to a sawmill in Parkton from the farm of Alfred Sparks on Mt. Carmel Road near Evna Road. Lemuel Morris hired Harry or Henry Taylor, 22; George Wills, 19; and John Talbott, 14. And in the early morning light a load of logs waited for them. George and John hopped into the wagon and began grabbing logs from Lemuel and Harry.

The murder

Exact details differ of the murder. A log slipped and fell to the ground. The young boys called, “Look Out!” And Taylor took offense, yelling up at them. Morris tried to placate Taylor and ended up heightening the tension. Morris turned his back to continue with the job, when Taylor, in a fit of uncontrolled rage, grabbed an ax and cracked Morris’s skull with two blows, felling the older man.

OR “Taylor said to Morris, “You’re a fool,” and Morris replied that if he were not still, he would strike him a blow, and when Morris had bowed down to the log, Taylor had hit him with the ax.” (Der Deutsche Correspondent. [Baltimore, Md.], 26 Oct. 1898.)

OR “Mr. Morris remonstrated with Taylor for allowing the end of a log to fly up. Taylor made a surly reply, Mr. Morris then said in a jocular manner. / ‘Don’t fly off the handle so quick or I’ll take my fists to you.’ …he killed Mr. Morris in self-defense. He said that they quarreled and both grabbed for the ax, which lay between them.” (Baltimore American. 17 June 1898.)

OR “Morris, he held his fist under [Taylor’s] nose and seemed to have the intention of attacking him.” (Der Deutsche correspondent. [Baltimore, Md.], 18 June 1898.)

In any case after Morris fell, Talbott and Wills moved toward Taylor and may have struggled with him:

“…the two boys made a start to interfere, Taylor turned savagely on them and they ran. He then threw the axe at them, but failed to strike them. He then picked up the axe, and, saying “Well, I’ll finish this one any way,” returned to where Morris almost lifeless body was lying and dealt the prostrated man three more terrific blows with the back of the axe, crushing in the skull.” (The Democratic Advocate. [Westminster, Md.], 18 June 1898.)

“Talbott and Mill then grappled with the young murderer, who fought like a madman and succeeded in breaking away from them.” (Baltimore American. 17 June 1898.)

The boys ran to alert as many people as possible in Parkton, including Lemuel’s father Nicholas and the local doctor, Dr. A. R. Mitchell. The doctor later testified Morris lived some 15-20 minutes after he arrived. The doomed man lay unconscious and breathed out whatever he had left in him. One account reports that blood and brains stained the forest floor. A grand jury quickly held conference over the body and charged Taylor with the murder. After the inquest, Morris’s mother and brother arrived to kneel over him and plead for him to speak.

Taylor fled toward the nearby Pennsylvania border. He lived with his mother in Rayville not far from the border. Once the community found out about the murder they began hunting Taylor along the roads. Feelmeyer and Whittle arrived at the scene and set out in pursuit. Lemuel Carr saw Taylor on foot and, ignorant of the murder, gave him a ride in his wagon, which is where Constable Grant Hare, riding, overcame Taylor and pointed his pistol at the murderer. Taylor offered no further resistance but instead later pleaded for Hare to kill him instead of turning him over to the lynch mob. “Constable Hare says that when he arrived at Parkton with his prisoner he was surrounded by an angry crowd of men, who expressed bitter feeling against Taylor, and he therefore boarded the first train for Baltimore.” (Baltimore American. 17 June 1898.)

The trial

“The trial was before Judges Fowler and Burke. Taylor appeared unconcerned, even careless. He was neatly dressed in a dark coat and rough gray trousers. His brother was in the courtroom. He was represented by Emanuel W. Herman, with whom was associated Frank I. Duncan. State’s Attorney John S. Ensor, in his opening statement to the court, gave an outline of the crime. Mr. Duncan, for the defense, filed a plea of insanity, and on that theory the defense relied almost absolutely. […]

Taylor was convicted of second degree murder and sentenced to the penitentiary for 18 years.” (The Democratic advocate. [Westminster, Md.], 05 Nov. 1898.)

The life before and after

Born around August 1875, Henry’s father abandoned the family or the mother never knew the father. Illegitimacy tainted the young boy. To the farming community he was “weak and wayward temperament, morose and eccentric, without any softening influence of home life, he grew up moody, morbid, with an almost total lack of moral sensibility” (The Democratic Advocate. [Westminster, Md.], 05 Nov. 1898).  He moved in and out of charity houses. In 1880 Henry lives with the elderly Robert Eareckson and his wife Julia with the United Brethren preacher, J. T. Knapp. Able to read and write, perhaps the preacher taught him some. At his trial the Baltimore American describes him thus: “both in manner and appearance is a typical farm hand. When taken to jail he wore a large hickory hat, blue-checkered shirt, overalls, and clod-hopper’ shoes. He was very nervous and appeared to realize his position.”(Baltimore American. 17 June 1898.)

From the Penitentiary in Baltimore City, where he resided in 1900, he was moved to the State Hospital for the Insane. Despite the 18 year sentence, Taylor went on to live the rest of his life institutionalized. As late as 1940, Taylor resided at the Spring Grove State Hospital in Catonsville, Maryland.


Lemuel left four children to be cared for by his father and mother-in-law. “One year ago his wife died [from an operation] and shortly afterwards his home was swept away by fire. One month ago his youngest child died. He was well-known and very popular among his neighbors.” (Baltimore American. 17 June 1898.)



Baltimore American. 17 June 1898.

The Democratic Advocate. (Westminster, Md.), 18 June 1898. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. <http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85038292/1898-06-18/ed-1/seq-3/>

The Democratic Advocate. (Westminster, Md.), 05 Nov. 1898. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. <http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn85038292/1898-11-05/ed-1/seq-2/>

Der Deutsche Correspondent. (Baltimore, Md.), 17 June 1898. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. <http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045081/1898-06-17/ed-1/seq-6/> translation by Google Translate.

Der Deutsche Correspondent. (Baltimore, Md.), 18 June 1898. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. <http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045081/1898-06-18/ed-1/seq-6/> translation by Google Translate.

Der Deutsche Correspondent. (Baltimore, Md.), 26 Oct. 1898. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. <http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn83045081/1898-10-26/ed-1/seq-7/> translation by Google Translate.

Slaves of My Lady’s Manor: The Curtis Family


William Curtis was a profitable farmer of My Lady’s Manor.  His family intermarried and supported the Sparks family in their mutual endeavors.

  • In his household of 1830, six slaves were enumerated:
    • 1 Male under 10 years of age
    • 1 Male 10-23 years of age
    • 1 Male 24-35 years of age
    • 2 Females under 10 years of age
    • 1 Female 10-23 years of age
  • In 1840, four slave were enumerated
    • 1 Male under 10 years of age
    • 1 Male 10-23 years of age
    • 1 Female 24-35 years of age
    • 1 Female 36-54 years of age
  • In 1850, eight slaves were enumerated
    • Female–(1810)
    • Male–(1817)
    • Male–(1825)
    • Female–(1830)
    • Male–(1843)
    • Female–(1846)
    • Male–(1848)
    • Female–(1850)–Four months old. Likely to be the child of one of the older female slaves.
  • In 1860, nine slaves were enumerated
    • Female–(1812)
    • Male–(1825)
    • Male–(1842)
    • Female–(1845)
    • Male–(1850)
    • Female–(1851)
    • Male–(1851)
    • Male–(1853)
    • Female–(1853)

The woman born in 1812 may have been the mother of the children: at least of the female born in 1850 or 51. The other potential mother born in 1830 is not enumerated in 1860 while the child remains part of the household. The household seems to have preserved some coherency, with only the male born in 1817 and the female born in 1830 not showing in the household. William Curtis died in 1863; his will shows that even at that late date William refused to emancipate his slaves. There are only two names given:

  • Ellen was given to William’s son John S Curtis
    • In 1870 an Ellen Johnson (1848) is enumerated in the household of Archebald Smith (1825), and his wife is Harriet Smith (1827).  It is possible, although very speculative, that Ellen married into Joshua Johnson’s family.  Ellen has two children: John H (1867) and Mary E (1869).  They are in close proximity to John S. Curtis.  While a young woman named Cynthia Young (1856) works in the Curtis household
  • Lewis was given to his daughter Rachel Sparks. The will reads: “…a negro boy named Lewis to dispose of as she may see proper”.

    • Hazel Sparks a great-granddaughter of Rachel Sparks[wife to Daniel] would remark that her grandparents [William Curtis Sparks and Susanna Hoover] had slaves.  They may have owned slaves prior to the will’s 1863 execution, but they are not listed in the 1850 Slave Schedule.

William’s sons: Levi, Eli, William divided the remaining “servants” equally. What I assume to have been a family was divided in a familiar and painful scene even as emancipation neared. They were however not sold it seems.  Dr. Loren Schweninger compiled petitions regarding slaves.  Included in the compilations is this “Petition of John S. Curtis and William Curtis … 25 August 1863 Estate executor seeks to sell property “negroes excepted” (Baltimore County Register of Wills MSA SC 4239-18-85)

Slaves of My Lady’s Manor: Other families of the 2nd District



  • Maria Simms ran away from Ira Anderson but was apprehended on 20 April 1834.


  • A Joshua Thompson (1849) is enumerated in 1870 in the household of Nicholas Hutchins. In 1850 there is a Male (1849) in the household of Nicholas Hutchins


  • Ann Ford (1830), Maria Ford (1856), George Shaw (1856), Charity Shaw (1860) are enumerated in the household of John Perdue
    • In 1850 John Perdue is enumerated with two slaves: Female (1830) and Female (1843).
    • In 1860 John Perdue had the following slaves: Female (1830), Female (1840), Male (1835), Male (1857), Female (1858), Female (1860). It is possible that the Female born in 1860 and the Male born in 1857 are Charity and George Shaw. The Female born in 1830 seems to be Ann Ford. Maria Ford (1856) might be the Female born in (1858). The Female (1840) and the Male (1835) are speculatively the parents of the Shaw siblings.
    • On March 19 1851 Henry Waters, a runaway from a master John Perdue was received in the Baltimore City Jail.
    • On September 20th 1849 Charles and Angeline,are listed in the Accomodations Docket. Angeline is maybe Ann Ford.


  • A Ellison L. Swan (1856) and a Ann E Swan (1858) are enumerated in 1870 in the household of Mary Slade. Also present are Jesse Cox (1813), and a Willie S. Swan (1859).
    • In 1860 Mary Slade is enumerated with the following slaves: Male (1856), Female (1858).
  • A Deliah Swan (1838), Elias Swan (1854), Estrum Swan (1855), Fannie Swan (1861), George Swan (1864) are enumerated in 1870 in the household of Levi Slade.
    • Levi Slade in 1850 is enumerated with the following slaves: Male (1831), Female (1840), and a six-month old Female (1850)
    • Levi Slade in 1860 is enumerated with the following slaves: Male (1831), Female (1838), Female (1850), Male (1853), Male (1855), Male (1859), and a Female (1859). I’m presuming that Levi Slade owned the Swan family. Deliah’s husband died before 1870.
  • In a will probated on 22 November 1838, Thomas Slade wills Sarah to his daughter Susanna, and to his son Thomas and grandson Asbury: “one negroe boy called Granvil, one negroe girl called Maria, and one negroe woman called Betsey with the increase if any, to be equally divided when my said grandson Asbury arrives at the age of twenty-one years, the said slaves to remain and labour on said farm.”


From Schweninger’s compilation: “Thomas Pearce vs. Caroline Swan petition May 1864; answer 7 June 1864 Petitioner claims estate of Negro Charles Swan who died and left his estate to petitioner’s slave” (BALTIMORE COUNTY REGISTER OF WILLS MSA SC 4239-18-90).


  • In 1850 listed in the Accommodations Docket are five slaves owned by John B. Pearce: Joshua Hunter, Edward Griffith, and Jane Griffith with her two children. Pearce was a very prominent man who’s manor “Clynmalira” borders “My Lady’s Manor.”


    • John B Pearce is enumerated in 1850 with eight slaves: Female (1804), Male (1806), Female (1810), Female (1830), Male (1834), Male (1835), and a Male (1844)
    • In 1860 John B possesses seven slaves: Female (1815), Female (1828), Female (1834), Male (1835), Male (1841), Male (1854), Female (1856)
    • In a document about the historical home of Pearce the following appears: “Pearce was not a sessionist but had been a slaveholder. The family papers show his purchase of two slaves: Esther, age 12, in 1832, and Edward in 1848. A draft for a run-away advertisement was signed by both John B. and William Pearce, offering a reward for nine escapees plus some infant children. Wesley, age 13, was described as ‘very intelligent'” (Oakland Farm House 7).


  • Alexander Nesbit is enumerated in 1850 with eleven slaves. In the population census his occupation is judge of the Baltimore City Court.
    • A Peter Williams is recorded in the Slave Jail Records as a runaway from owner Alexander Nesbit: admitted on the 14 April 1837


  • George Harris (1810) ran away with his newly-wed wife Miranda Wallace. Joshua Hutchins posted an advertisement for the runaways on 13 June 1840.
  • Andrew(1833-35) ran away from Joshua Hutchins on 2 June 1855.

Limerick Roughs: John McDevitt, Vagabond of 8th Ward

In 1855, a simple gardener in Baltimore found it necessary to take space in the Baltimore Sun advertising his innocence of what the neighborhood gossips were spreading:

“TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN.—Mr. & Mrs. McDevitt, arrested July 20th, for assaulting and beating each other, is not John McDevitt, Gardener of Old Town.  It is hoped that this notice will satisfy a certain portion of the community who have spoken in an insulting way of said arrest.” (Baltimore Sun, 30 July 1855, p. 2)

In 1850, the gardener John McDevitt’s family resides in the 6th Ward, another resides in 8th Ward: an extended family with three John McDevitts (born 1842, 1833, and 1820) in a motley household of family and boarders. It is difficult to tell which John or if several John McDevitts committed the crimes listed here, but he came from the 8th Ward and I think it likely that it was John McDevitt born 1842 because of the 1870 census showing him in the penitentiary. [Of curious note the Gardener John McDevitt mentioned above had a son, James Aloysius McDevitt, who would achieve considerable renown as a Washington D. C. detective; including, being the first detective called to investigate Lincoln’s assassination.]

John McDevitt intimidated police and committed arson (common crimes committed by the rival Know-Nothings and other gangs); he also drunkenly stumbled into a variety of beatings and thefts making his  relationship to the political gang of the 8th Ward, the “Limericks,” difficult to fully establish. The strongest evidence for partisanship during the Natives’ violence is his arrest for the attempt to kill officer William Kid during the 1857 Election Riot.

Election Riot

On the same day that Jackson Hall faced Police and the Natives, a few blocks down, near the 8th Ward Polls, an officer was viciously attacked:

“In the eighth ward all was very quiet during the forenoon and up to half-past four in the afternoon. At that time police officer Wm. Kidd was passing the polls and when he reached the corner of Eager street turned and again started down Ensor street.  A young man of his acquaintance was sitting on the cellar door near the window where the judges received the votes. To him Mr. Kidd spoke and they started down the street together. They had proceeded as far as the corner of Webb street, when there was a cry to rally, and immediately an assault was made on the officer and he was badly beaten on the head and face with revolvers, and one of the skirts of his coat was torn off.  In the melee he was knocked down, and while he was on the ground a young man ran up, placed a revolver to his head and pulled the trigger. The cap snapped, and before he had the opportunity to make a second attempt the weapon was wrested from him by a citizen who was present. Mr. Kidd then got up and ran for the open door of a house in Webb street, but the inmates became alarmed and closed the door against him.  At that moment a pistol was fired at him, which entered his clothing in the back without touching his person.  A second shot was then fired, when Kidd put his hand on his back and staggered forward. He then ran down Ensor street as far as Chew, one of his assailants hanging on to him. There he fell, and was taken up and carried to a house near by, where Dr. Damman attended to his injuries. It was found that the ball had penetrated the spinal region and touched the kidneys. The charge from the first pistol, a large slug, was found on the removal of his clothing. His condition is said to be critical.”  (Baltimore Sun, 15 October 1857, p 1).

A few days later, Kidd would be in an improving condition. Police arrested Edward Keelan and John Millen on the charge of shooting Kidd. Police gathered John McDevitt, along with Patrick Ready and Michael Murphy on the night of 17 October 1857, and charged them with participating. Patrick Ready, already a veteran club rough, had a scar on his face from a bullet wound received in the 1856 riots. (Baltimore Sun, 15 September 1856, p. 1; 16 October 1857, p. 1; 19 October 1857, p. 1)

The Fires

Charge of Arson—Watchmen Eccleston and Hackett arrested on Saturday night last Albert Clark and John McDevitt upon the charge of setting fire to the stable of Mr. Riley, on the Bel-air commons.  The fire was timely discovered by the neighbors and extinguished without causing an alarm.  Justice Mearis committed them to await further examination.” (Baltimore Sun, 21 April 1856, 4).

“John McDevitt, indicted (together with Peddicord, Graham and others,) for arson, in the alleged setting fire to a house of Mary Ann Lankford, on the 1st of May, was put on trial. […]

Officer Hoover, on Saturday night, the first of May, about 8 ½ o’clock, saw Peddicord at the corner of Bond and Eager streets; he was dressed in dark clothes, with his cap down over his eyes, and passed the officer down Bond street.  The officer followed, thinking something was going on.  Heard the alarm of fire and ran down to the corner of Bond and Abbot Streets, and found the fire in a house on Abbot street.  Amelia Miller gave the alarm first to witness.  They broke open the door and put it out; it had been kindled with spirits of turpentine.  When witness went into the house he saw a person he supposed to be John McDevitt getting over the back fence.  About five minutes after the discovery of the fire Peddicord came into the house in his shirt sleeves, and assisted in putting out the fire.  Did not see any one in the house when he got there, and all he saw Peddicord do was to assist in putting out the fire.

Amelia Miller saw John Gordon, John McDevitt, Andrew Peddicord and John Graham in the second yard from the yard of the house fired, about three o’clock in the afternoon–they were standing there talking.  No one lived in the house to which the yard is attached where they were.  The fire was about 8 ½ o’clock– the house was unoccupied.” (Baltimore Sun, 2 June 1858, p. 1).

They were found not guilty.  Peddicord testified they were in the yard, ,”to quietly drink a half-pint of whisky” (Baltimore Sun, 8 June 1858, 1).

Petty Rogue

McDevitt gained enough of a reputation to be charged on that alone: “John McDevitt, charged with being a rogue and vagabond, was released on $700 bail” (Baltimore Sun, 3 October 1856, 1).

“John McDevitt and Joseph Solder were arrested last night by officers Scarff and Griffin, of the night police.  On the charge of robbing Samuel Folts on the 4 ½ street bridge.  They were held to bail to answer for the charge at court.” (Baltimore Sun, 11 November 1858, 4).

After the Natives

After Nativism faded from the political field, the roughs who waged the political riots found less direction in their drunken sprees, and subsequently the motives for their crimes became mundane.

Charged with Larceny.—George Connolly and John McDevitt were arrested on Wednesday night by policemen Thomas E. Roe, White and Bouldin, charged with the larceny of a silver watch, valued at $7, and 35 cents in money, the property of John W. Jackson, colored, corner of Calvert and Monument streets.  Justice Robinson committed them for the action of the grand jury.  John Ragan, charged with being accessory to the robbery, was arrested at the same time, and committed by the same justice.” (Baltimore Sun, 20 March 1868, 1).

“John Regan, John McDevitt and Geo Connelly, indicted for robbing John W. Jackson, colored, of a watch, &c, at the corner of Monument and Calvert streets, at 2 o’clock in the morning.  McDevitt was tried before a jury and found guilty; Connelly was tried before a jury and found guilty; Connelly was tried before the court and case held sub curia and Regan’s case was postponed.” (Baltimore Sun, 24 April 1868, 4.)

If John served jail time it wasn’t long: “John McDevitt, assaulting John W. Kinnear, fined $20 and costs.” (Baltimore Sun, 9 November 1868, 4).

Charged with Assaulting a Policeman.—John McDevitt, charged with snapping a pistol at, with intent to shoot and kill, policeman John R. Merrick, and Samuel Donahue, charged with being accessory to the assault, were arrested on Tuesday evening by policemen McKewen, Raymo, and Staylor, and, after an examination before Justice Hagerty, were committed in default of security to await the action of the grand jury.— The assault, it is alleged, took place on Gay street, near Exeter, between three and four o’clock in the afternoon.  The officer was on his return from the middle district station, and was followed up Gay street by the accused, one of whom (McDevitt) pointed at his head a pistol, the cap of which fortunately snapped, the other having his hand on the shoulder of the officer, who heard the click of the weapon, without being aware at the time of his dangerous situation.— On subsequently receiving information from witnesses of the occurrence, he had the parties arrested.” (Baltimore Sun, 2 December 1869, 1; 21 January 1870, 4).

The following year McDevitt and Donohue were found not guilty.(Baltimore Sun, 21 January 1870, 4).

In 1870 McDevitt sits in the City jail in the 8th Ward and unfortunately decided to assault its officers as well and sentenced to an additional six months (Baltimore Sun, 21 March 1870, 4).

“John McDevitt, Henry Burns and Wm Stack, larceny of brushes, &c $1.83, from J. McMahon, Burns pleaded guilty, one year in the penitentiary, McDevitt three months in jail, and Stack not guilty” (Baltimore Sun, 25 September 1877, 5).

The criminal, John McDevitt disappears from “Page 4” after 1877.


Limerick Roughs: Michael J. Grady, of the 8th Ward Baltimore

The 8th Ward of Baltimore City during the mid 1800s was known as “Limerick” for its concentration of Irish immigrants. Controlled by the Democratic Party, Limerick gang members faced Nativist gangs who controlled the rest of the Wards in bloody street battles.

I have previously detailed the Election Riot of 1857.  In that riot, Michael J. Grady fought as a Democratic Party rough against Nativists. He was tried in killing of Police Officer Jourdan during that riot in 1859.

Little is known of Grady’s early life except he worked as a clerk along the wharves of Baltimore as a young man. Born roughly in 1833 in Maryland, he married a woman named Mary Ellen and worked as a carpenter in the mid-1850s.

By 1857, Grady was a captain in the National Greys, an independent city militia unit. During the trial, Col George P. Kane recommended Grady’s character: “….has known him for 12 or 15 years; he was a clerk in a mercantile house of a friend of his; he was connected with the volunteer corps; is a fine young officer and was always highly spoken of by those who knew him.”

After his acquittal in Jourdan’s death, ironically enough he was made a Lieutenant in the Baltimore Police. Grady served as a lieutenant in the police but resigned on 18 December 1861 (being an ardent Democrat his resignation appears to be preparation for secession.)  –The Daily Exchange. (Baltimore, Md.), 19 Dec. 1860.

As the nation braced for war between the states, the 8th Ward elected Grady delegate to the State convention of 1861: “to consider what position Maryland should take in the present national crisis.” –Baltimore Sun. 6 Feb. 1861 p 1

In the chaos of the first months of civil strife, Grady and twenty others on the 7th of September 1861, took a road South under darkness. Someone betrayed their intentions to join the Confederate Army to the federal police. The police rode hard to capture them “about nine miles from the city.”  With only one pistol between them the group pleaded they were only going a-fishing. A search revealed that if they didn’t have firearms they at least had a Confederate Flag to show their disloyalty. The  were shipped to Fort McHenry prison.- Baltimore Sun. 9 September 1861.

On 12th September a “strong posse” moved the twenty-one souls from a police station to Ft. McHenry where they boarded the steamer “Richard Willing” for Ft. Delaware. Baltimore Sun. 13 September 1861.

The reports give the names of the following secesshes: Thomas Shields, William Kewen, Benjamin F. McAuley, George Thompson, John Wilkins, William Ellis, James Harker, Patrick Croughan, James Campbell, David H. Luchesi, Alexander O’Connor, Frederick Solenbach, Patrick  Conway or Conney, George Appleton, Charles Powers, John Bouldin, George Summers, Thomas Daley, Samuel Davidson, and David Simmons or Summers. Robert J. Ramsey, George Gosnell, and Robert G. Ware.

Considered a political prisoner, Secretary Seward sent an order of release for many held in Ft. Warren in late November 1861 if they took an oath of allegiance. Grady was to be released with John Bouldin, Thomas Shields, George Appleton, David H. Luchesi, George Thompson. Grady refused and remained a prisoner. –Port Tobacco Times, and Charles County Advertiser. (Port Tobacco, Md.), 28 Nov. 1861; Daily Nashville Patriot. (Nashville, Tenn.), 07 Dec. 1861.

Some reports mention Grady’s release shortly after, but the spotty reporting makes it uncertain. However, it appears Grady did not survive the war. In 1864 Mary, his wife, resides on 31 Buren alone, and subsequent directories do not show the return of her husband.

Genealogy Rabbit Hole #2- Sparks

The ancestry for the Baltimore and Anne Arundel County Sparks is hazy and tenuous. While many online trees give an ancestry that leads to the Fareham, Hampshire, England Sparks beginning with Richard Sparks (1658-1740) and then Thomas Sparks (1615-1693), I find that this Sparks Family Group probably came from Charles County and maybe St. Mary’s County first and were in Maryland much earlier, making it unlikely that Richard Sparks (c. 1658) is a direct ancestor. There is a consistent name repetition that might indicate this Family Group did come from Fareham but from an earlier ancestor.

I have few direct connections; however, there appears enough geographical proximity to call this a Family Group. My thinking is basically as wealthy landowners purchased and speculated in land in neighboring counties, the Sparks family migrated with these developments, working as tenant farmers. The family migrated from Charles County to Prince George to Anne Arundel and here the family splits: part going to upper Baltimore County and the other going to Pittsylvania County, Virginia.

The evidence I rely on is the repetition of names, especially the landholding class such as NEALE, COURT, BATCHELOR, and YATES.

As of now, the earliest record we have places the Sparks on the banks of the Wicomico in Charles County. The earliest record of a Sparks is in William Sparks’s court case of 1678. The one Sparks who we have in St. Mary’s County is Richard Sparks. I am not sure this Sparks is part of the Family Group. The first Sparks I am definitely placing in this Family Group is William Sparks

RICHARD SPARKS, born before 1658; died after 1681 Maryland

On 26 July 1673, “Then came Richard Sparkes of St. Mary’s County and proved Rights for 50 acres for his time of service performed in this province.”  Richard then assigned those rights to EDWARD CLARKE.

  • ST. MARY’S COUNTY (Court Records) Richard Sparkes  Book 17, pg 477.  26 July 1673.; see also Sparks, Paul E. “Immigrants Names Sparks Who Came to Maryland before 1675.”  Sparks Family Association. 18:4 Whole No. 72 (December 1970): pgs 1362-1363. Web.

When Maryland was first founded in 1634, those intrepid enough to go received 100 acres of land.  This was reduced to 50 acres by 1641.  Rich men gave indentured servants 50 acres of land at the end of their service.  Servants in turn paid for their transportation by signing over this 50 acres to their master.  It appears this is what the court record shows.  In addition to the land, a master gave his newly freed servant an ox, gun, two hoes and clothing.  Terms of service lasted from 2 to 6 years.

In an Administration record dated 10 May 1681, the estate of John Dabridgcourt paid Richard an unknown amount.  And this is the last we hear of Richard.

  • MARYLAND PREROGATIVE COURT (Inventories and Accounts) John Dabridgecourt, St. Mary’s County. 7B, 74 A # 4840. 10 May 1681. Others listed include: “John Steventon paid to Mr, Gardner, Magdalen Pean, Richard Sparks, Stephen Gough paid to Mr. Gardner, Richard Gardner, Thomas Dante.”
    • However tenuous, there is evidence through the reoccurrence names in the records. For instance PHILIP LYNES was indebted to EDWARD CLARK. JOHN COURT and JAMES NEALE act as jurors in William’s 1678 case.  Both John Court (probably a son) and James Neale would later lease land to a Thomas Sparkes.

CHARLES COUNTY 1657, 1674-1682

WILLIAM SPARKES, born before 1653; death after 1682 Maryland

A William Sparks lives in the Wicomico area of Charles County around the same time as Richard:

Upon peticon made to the Court by Wm Sparke a lame man It was ordred that Jno Lemaire receive him into his Custody and provided that the sd Lemaire doe make a pfect cure of his legg that then he bee pd two thousand poundes of tob out of the County Levye & in  case the sd Sparke doe remaine Sound one whole yeare & tht Jno Lemaire prsent him So to the Court then the sd Lemaire to be pd one thousand poundes of tob more the next Yeare, and if it Shall Soe happen that the sd Sparke Should dye wthin halfe a yeare that then the sd Lemaire be pd one thousand poundes of tob

  • CHARLES COUNTY (Court Proceedings) William Sparke 1671-1674. Liber E p. 180. 10 June 1674.; see Proceedings of the County Court of Charles County: 1666 – 1674. vol 60. ed. J. Hall Pleasants. Baltimore: Maryland Historical Society, 1943. 563. Web. It is uncertain if this is the same William, but Lemaire did have land on the Wicomico close to JOHN COURTS.

A William Sparkes sued PHILIP LYNES on 15 October 1678. The case reached an initial hearing on 14 February 1679. Philip had forced William, on 20 August 1678, from 150 acres in Charles County before his lease was expired.  William Harbert acted as the muscle and was initially named in the suit. Philip Lynes claimed part of the 150 acres of land was part of his tracts “Stumpdale” and “Watsons Land.”[4]

  • These tracts had been surveyed for a THOMAS BATCHELOR, of Cedar Poynt.  A court case involving Batchelor and an Edward Parks occurred almost 20 years earlier.  From what I can make of it, Batchelor had hired a servant from Edward Parks and, it was argued, agreed to pay Parks regardless of the health of the servant. In the transcription there is a Mr Sparks. I now think this is a scribal error. Mister was an honorific title and not used for servants. However, an examination of the original is needed.

Parks v.Batchelor- Deposit inter mr Parks & mr Batchelor: Richard Tarling aged twenty three years or thereabts Sworne and Examined upon his Oath Sayeth Concerning a Servant that mr Sparks hyred to mr Batchelor for the time of three weeks he did him Little or no worke, by reason of his nasty diseases the flux and the Scurvey, And farther this Deponent Sayth that mr Sparks Came to mr Batchelors house one day, and mr Batchelor desired the Said mr Sparks to take Some Course with him and gett him away for he had rather give him Six hundred pounds of Tobacco, then be bound to tend on him, by the reason he was So very nasty, And farther this Depont Sayth that it hindered most of this Deponents time and mr Batchelors to tend on him, and farther this Depont Sayeth not.               Signum Richard X Tarling

Proceedings of the Provincial Court of Maryland: vol 41 1658-1662. ed. Bernard Christian Steiner. Baltimore: Maryland Historical Society, 1922. 9. Web.; see also ST. MARY’S PROVINCIAL COURT (Proceedings) Liber B, No. 3. pg 370. 30 December 1657.

Getting back to William’s case, the court adjourned until after the land was surveyed, 11 May 1679. This was no easy feat finding an obscure boundary mark as the land dipped into swamp and morass. The tract was called Hardy’s Purchase and situated on the North side of the Potomac River.  It bordered property owned by John Lee, Richard Watson, and Thomas Batchelor. Batchelor’s Creek ran through a marsh, which spilled into a beaver dam on the property. William leased it on 1 August 1678 for a term of 3 years. William asked for 50 pounds sterling in damages as a consequence of being ejected. Robert Ridgely acted as attorney for William and Christopher Rousby acted for Philip Lynes. The suit was settled in William’s favor:

    Wm Sparkes Lessee of Henry Hardy


Philip Lynes

the Comand was given to the Sheriffe of Charles County that whereas at a Provinciall Court held at the Citty of St Maryes Eighteenth Day of ffebruary Anno Doni 168o before the Justices of the same Court in an action of Ejectment then and there Depending between William Sparkes Lessee of Henry Hardy plt and Philip Lynes def Itt was Considered by Our Said Justices that the Said William Sparkes Lessee as aforesaid Recover against the said Philip Lynes his terme Yett to come and unexpired of and in One messuage of One hundred and fifty Acres of Land lyeing in Charles County aforesaid Called Hardyes Purchase lately in the tenure & occupation of Thomas Peirsey decd wch the Said Henry Hardy to him the said Sparkes Demised for a terme wch is not yet past & likewise the Sume of Nine thousand One hundred sixty and Seaven pounds of tobacco for his Costs of suite by him the said William Sparkes in that behalfe Layd out and Expended Itt was therefore comanded the said Sheriffe that of the goods and Chattles of the Said Philip Lynes If they should be found in his baliwick he should Cause to be made the aforesaid Sume of Nine thousand One hundred Sixty and seaven pounds of tobacco: and When he had the same Soe made as aforesaid or any Part thereof the same in his Custody to keepe Soe that he Should have the Same here the Six and twentyeth day of September in the Seaventh yeare of the Dominion of the Right honoble Charles Lord Baltemore &c Annocp Doni 1682 to render unto the Said William Sparkes On wch Said Six & Twentyeth day of September in the yeare aforesaid Collonel William Chandler Sheriffe of the County aforesaid made returne of the writ afore said that by vertue thereof he hath made of the goods and Chattles of the Said Philip Lynes the Sume of Nine thousand One hundred Sixty and Seaven pounds of tobacco.

  • Proceedings of the Provincial Court of Maryland: vol 69 1679-1680/1 68, 136-137, 242-244, and 402-409; vol 70 1681-1683 Court Series. ed. Elizabeth Merritt. Baltimore: Maryland Historical Society, 1964. 291.; see also ST. MARY’S PROVINCIAL COURT (Proceedings) W. C. pgs. 63, 122-123, 216-218, 369-375, 633. 26 September 1682.


THOMAS SPARKS, born before 1682; died 1702 Charles County, Maryland

On 2 December 1702, William Sparkes acted as adminstrator for a Thomas Sparkes in St. Mary’s County. William placed a 100 pound bond and Thomas Blacman and Cornelius Dunivan acted as Security.

  • MARYLAND PREROGATIVE COURT (Testament Proceedings) Administration Bonds Exhibited. vol 19A, pg 129.St. Mary’s County,  2 December 1702. For some connection see John Bould Administration 1696, Cornelius Dunivan’s wife administers and payment is made to Anthony Neale, the landlord of Thomas Sparkes.

WILLIAM SPARKS, born before 1702; died after 1722 Charles County, Maryland

There is a Charles County Court Record for a William Sparkes that according to Maryland State Archives is now lost. The only record I have of it is in the land record index for Charles County. As best that I can make out the other party in the case is a Roach.

  • CHARLES COUNTY COURT. William Sparkes. vol. K 2 pg. 355. August 1722. The reference can be found here: CHARLES COUNTY COURT (Land Records, Index) , p. 0420, MSA_CE83_1.


This is where many trees take up the Family Group. The exact relationships are still tenuous. For instance in 1738 a land record shows a Thomas Sparks Senior, meaning there must have been another Thomas of adult age that we have not accounted for in Charles County at the time. Perhaps the inventory recorded in 1727 for Thomas Sparks refers to someone outside this Family Group.

THOMAS SPARKS, born about 1689

ELIZABETH —, born about 1691; died after 1729. Married 1707 Maryland

  1.    Thomas Sparks, 1711-1789
  2.    Matthew Sparks, born about 1715; died 1786

Matthew migrated to Pittsylvania, Virginia. Married Eleanor Brooks. Matthew had a son named Josiah.

In late 1748, Matthew Sparks purchased 68 acres, called “Bedfordshire Carrier” from William Fields for 3000 pounds of tobacco.  Matthew sold this land to Evan Jones 2500 pounds of tobacco.

In 1760, Matthew Sparks purchased the 109 acres of “Smith’s Neglect” for 5 shillings from Benjamin Beall.  In 1777, Matthew sold the property to Richard Beall, son of Ninian, Sr., for 100 pounds.

In 1763, “Mathew Sparkes brought Before me the subscriber a Small Black Stallion Colt about Ten hand high has a Small Stare in his forehead he Complains that he Trespasses upon his Inclosure.”

PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY COURT (Land Records) Book EE, pg 631. 13 December 1748.; Book RR, pg 67. 27 August 1760.; Book TT, pg 113. 25 November 1763.; Book CC2, pg 337. 15 March 1777.; FREDERICK COUNTY COURT (Land Records) Deed Book F, pg 1180. 4 November 1760. Witnesses for these deeds included: B. Young, L. Young, Morda Jacobs, Robert Tyler, Josa. Beall, Chrisr. Lowndes

In a will written on 1 April 1725, JAMES NEALE of Wolleston Manor in Charles County gives to his son Benjamin Neale 500 acres of land leased to Davies, Anthony Smith, John Castles, and Thomas Sparkes.

  • CHARLES COUNTY PROBATES (Wills) James Neale. vol 3 pg 217. 11 October 1727.; CHARLES COUNTY PROBATES (Inventory) James Neale. vol. 1717-1735 pg. 238. 31 October 1727.

A ROBERT YATES witnessed the inventory to the estate.  In documents related to Benjamin the tract of land is called either “Gill’s Tract” or “Giles Land,” and borders the Wicomico River.  It appears, if the connections are correct, that the Sparks family resided here, before 1725, and the next land record we have for them is in 1738 moving into Prince George’s County.

Probate Records for Anne Arundel show a Thomas Sparks died intestate in 1727.  An inventory was conducted on 20 April 1727.  Leonard Hollyday of Prince George’s County administered the estate.  The inventory states there are “no relations” in the province (women and children were excluded from this listing). I am leaning towards the Thomas Sparks who died in Anne Arundel in 1727 not being part of the direct line if he is related at all.

  • “Sparks Family of Pittsylvania County, Virginia.” compiled by William Perry Johnson. Sparks Family Association. Whole No. 11 pgs 79-85. Web.; ANNE ARUNDEL (Inventories) Thomas Sparks. vol 12 pg 264. 1727.
  • Sparks, Paul E. “Thomas Sparks, Political Exile.” Sparks Family Association. 6:1 Whole No. 24a (December 1958): pgs 335-336. Web.

THOMAS SPARKS, born about 1711 Maryland; died 1789 in Pittsylvania, Virginia

ELIZABETH —, born before 1714

  1.   Josiah Sparks 1729-1765
  2.  Matthew Sparks, born around 1745; died after 1777

Matthew married Margery. Migrated to Pittsylvania, Virginia.  In 1775, Matthew purchased from James Beck 100 acres, called Pleasant Spring Enlarged for  50 pounds.  Matthew sold this tract to John Hamilton, Sr., for 80 pounds in 1777.

PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY COURT (Land Records) Book CC,. pg 136. 2 February 1775.; Book CC2, pg 396. 5 April 1777.; Witnesses to these deeds include: Jos. Beall, Chris. Lowndes,  Chris. Lowndes, Mary Henderson.

In 1730, Thomas Sparks of Charles County leased “that plantation he now lives on for the term of 15 years,” from BENJAMIN NEALE.  Thomas paid annually 700 pounds of tobacco, 2 barrels of corn, 4 hens or capons, and 4 days work.  Thomas could use the surrounding timber but could not sell it, and if Neale were to find fruit trees, Thomas was to plant and tend them.  Any violation, on either side, resulted in a fine of 1000 pounds of tobacco. R. YATES and John Howard witnessed the deed.

  • CHARLES COUNTY COURT (Land Records) M 2, p. 0237, MSA_CE82_25. 29 September 1730.

In the 27 March 1730, Thomas is listed under the “debts” column in the inventory records for a Samuel Ferson owing 3 schillings.  He was not listed in the “desperate” column.

  • CHARLES COUNTY PROBATES (Inventory) Samuel Ferson. Inventories 1717-1735, pg 198.  27 March 1730.

In 1738, Thomas Sparks Senior, planter, signed a 21 year lease with JOHN COURTS of Charles County, Maryland, Gentleman, for 250 acres of land lying in Prince George’s County near Rock Creek and known by the name of “Clean Drinking.”  ROBERT YATES and John B[r]iscoe witnessed the deed.

  • PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY COURT (Land Records) T, p. 0682, MSA_CE65_10. 24 October 1738.

In the lease Thomas was to plant 150 apple trees and leave them in “good order” once the lease was expired.  Thomas was to have the first year rent free, but after pay 800 pounds of tobacco yearly. “Clean Drinking” lay near the first falls of Potomac River on Rock Creek.

  • In 1740, a lease from Charles Carroll, Esquire,  to Thomas, a planter from Prince George’s County, states Thomas was to pay 600 pounds of tobacco every March for twenty-one years delivered to the Eastern Branch of the Potomac, and not “Suffer more hands to work or till the demised premises than himself his wife and Children and in case his Children [are] uncapable to work then only to take in one able hand,” perhaps meaning Carroll did not want slave labor on the tract.  The land was called “Cloven Couse,” contained a 100 acres, and bordered Samuel Beall’s land.  Thomas was also required to improve this land with 100 apple trees.[14]  Daniel Carroll and Samuel Beall, Sr. witnessed the deed.
    • PRINCE GEORGE’S COUNTY COURT (Land Records) Y, p. 0197, MSA_CE65_11. 25 June 1740 .

Thomas began to buy land in 1748 beginning with a plot of 162 acres called “Owings Range” in Anne Arundel from John White of Prince George’s County.  The purchase required 1200 pounds of tobacco and 3..7 pounds sterling. John Brice and Vachel Denton witnessed.

  • ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY COURT (Land Records) RB 3, p. 0115, MSA_CE76_20. 30 November 1748.

In 1751, as executrix of Jacob Wood’s estate, Jane Wood settled an account with Thomas Sparks for 6 pounds 14 shillings and 6 pence.[16]

  • FREDERICK COUNTY (Administration Accounts) Jacob Wood vol 1 pg 12. 7 October 1751.

In 1752, Thomas purchased “Taylor’s Lott,” “Milford,” and “Cockey’s Addition.”  The first two parcels totaled 300 acres; “Cockey’s” contained 130 acres.  Thomas purchased the lots from William Woodward, a Goldsmith of London, Mary Holmes of Newington Butts, late Mary Woodward of Newington Butts, Benjamin Baron and Elizabeth, Cornelius Kehown and Sarah for 52 pounds.  These trustees purchased the land from Amos Garrett who purchased it from John Wood.  The deed was witnessed by John Moffatt and Philemon Young.

  • ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY COURT (Land Records) RB 3, p. 0624, MSA_CE76_20. 10 March 1752.

In 1753, Thomas sold the 130 acres of “Cockey’s Addition” lying on the north side of the Maggotty(Magothy) River for 20 pounds to John Brice.  Benjamin Beall and Clark Rockhold witnessed the deed.

  • ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY COURT (Land Records) RB 3, p. 0641, MSA_CE76_20. 22 November 1753.

On 24 January 1755, Thomas sold “Owings Range” to Bazil Barry for 42 pounds and 6 shillings.  The land had received its original patent in 1696 to Richard Owing.  On this land two creek branches came together, and John Mash established a mill at their confluence.

  • ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY COURT (Land Records) BB 1, p. 0021, MSA_CE76_21.  24 January 1755.

On 29 July 1755, near the head of the north side of the  Maggotty(Magothy) River, Thomas purchased 100 acres for 16 pounds from George Conoway.  The land bordered the plots purchased in 1752 and was near Muddy Run or Bailey’s Branch.  Thomas, I presume, for a short time ran the “Maggoty Mill called Milford.”

In 1756, Thomas sold 50 acres of this lot named “Milford” and part of a tract called “Tailor’s Lott” to a James Norman for 9 pounds.  On the same day, he sold to Jacob Allwell for 20 pounds 150 acres of the same lots.  Recorded in this record are the following landmarks: “Carved Rocks” which is by the Magothy on the north side, Ketchenars Cove, a valley is mentioned as well.  Benjamin Beall, James Norman and Jacob Allwell witnessed the deeds.

  • ANNE ARUNDEL COUNTY COURT (Land Records) BB 1, p. 0164; BB 1, p. 0168, MSA_CE76_21. 27 March 1756.

It is believed that a few years after Thomas moved with his son, Josiah to upper Baltimore County. Josiah stayed in Baltimore, while Thomas and Matthew moved to Virginia.