Humphrey Hubbard, an Englishman, who arrived in Kent County Maryland as an indentured servant sometime in the late 1660's.
According to the Maryland Archives Vol. LIV (1937) pp. 224-225 and 246-248, Kent County Court Proceedings, Lord Edmond Burton brought two servants to court on the 30 of June 1668. The servants names being Humphrey Hubbert and Mary Ewens, they were judged to serve five years a piece.
Prior to the end of the seventeenth century indentured servants were eligible for 50 acres of land upon completion of their time. Maryland's Archives show how some individuals gave up their land rights to begin life in another area. Humphrey Hubbard was one to choose this right.
"Know all men by these gents that I Humphrey Hubbard of the County of Kent does hereby these gents, for me my heir Esq, adm & assign and set over unto Michael Miller all my right title and interest of my right of land due unto me for serving my time in the province to have and to hold to him the said Michael Miller his heirs and assigns for ever which right was said before Mathew Warde the 25th day of June last past as witness my hand and seal the 23d day of September 1672."
This was signed in the presents of Ralph Blackhall and Edward Lynn.
Humphrey Hubbard's presence is seen through out the land records of Dorchester County, either as purchaser or witness to transactions and probates. Though identified as a cooper by profession in land records, he assumed the title of Deputy Commissary for Dorchester County in the 1700's. He is mentioned in the 1707 Assembly Proceedings which were transcribed by Thomas Bacon in Bacon's Laws of Maryland published in 1765.
Chapter IX page 90
March 26 - April 15, 1707
"L. H. J. To his Excellency John Seymour Esqr Captain General and Governor in Chief of the Province of Maryland The Petition of Hugh Eccieston, John Hodson, Joseph Ennalls and Roger Woolford of Dorchester County on Behalf of several of the Inhabitants humbly seethe that about the year 1704 a certain Humphry Hubbard was constituted and appointed Deputy Commissary of the said County and during the said year and next year following did take the Probate of several Wills of several of the Inhabitants of the said County and thereupon granted Administrations as also did take the Inventories of several Estates and Accounts and Probate of the same made up before him according to the Act of Assembly in such Case provided and your said petitioners further take leave to inform your Excellency and honors that in the year 1705 coming up to the Commissary General Court in Order to return the said wills Inventories and Accounts into the said Office an Accident by fire happened, whereby not only the Boat of the said Humphry was wholly consumed and turned to ashes by which means sundry of the inhabitants having lands and legacies bequeathed unto them by the said Wills and several orphans and creditors by the loss of such inventories and several poor ignorant people having exhibited and made up such accounts and not having copies of the same are likely and will if not remedied suffer very much some to their disinherit son and ruin.
The premises considered your petitioners humbly pray that a Bill may be brought in to relieve the said sufferers by enacting that the Copy of said wills Inventories and Accounts now lodged in the Commissary General's Office and proved to be a true Copy by the Oath of the said Humphry may have the same Power and Effect in law as the said Originals if they had not been burnt. And your Petitioners as in duty bound shall pray, John Hodson, Roger Woolford, Joseph Ennalls and Hugh Eccleston.
Indorsed Viz. by his Excellency the Governor and Council in Assembly April 4 1707. This Petition is thought very reasonable and recommended to the House of Delegates that such a Bill be brought in. Signed by Order. W. Bladen CL. Co. p. 119 Which said Petition being here read and considered it's ordered to be indorsed as follows April 4, 1707"
The incident mentioned above happened during the transportation from Dorchester County to Annapolis via the Chesapeake Bay. Fortunately John Seymore and the British Crown were sensible and they accepted Humphrey's recommendation and this potential "genealogist's nightmare" was averted!
His land purchases ranged from the Northwest Fork of the Nanticoke River in his early years to further south near the Great Choptank River. Gradually, he focused on lands that would later become Caroline and Dorchester Counties on the Eastern Shore of Maryland's Chesapeake Bay. Humphrey may have been married more than once as is evidenced by the supposed ages of his known children. At the turn of the 18th Century, his land sales include the name of his wife, Elizabeth.
Dorchester records have not yielded a will for Humphrey who died in 1710. An account for his estate names two debtors known to be his sons (Samuel and Daniel) and several other debtors. Wife Elizabeth's account also contains those names. Missing are assumed sons Humphrey Jr. Charles (who never married) and John, as well as assumed daughter Jane (wife of Joseph Thomas Sr.) and Mary (named in Charles will and who probably never married).
Any questions concerning this information please e-mail Herb Thompson at
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