While looking up Holland deeds in Salt Lake City, I came across a number of manumissions recorded in Anne Arundel County, Maryland in the time period after the American Revolution.
I only had time to scan a few of these and I will post them once a week for the next few weeks, but if you have an ancestor who was from Maryland and family lore states that he/she was freed from slavery long before the Civil War, check these deed books.
It appears that a number of Maryland families were heading westward by 1790, including my husband’s Hollands. Some of these families were slave owners and apparently decided to free their slaves instead of selling them or having them move with the family.
I have cropped the page to include just the Steward filing, but have also posted the full deed page at the bottom of the page.
Here is the manumission of Pheby Hall, her son, Will and her daughter, Nell:
Know all men by these presents that I Stephen Steward Senior of west river Ann Arundel County for divers good Causes and Considerations me thereunto mov-ing hath given and granted unto my Mulatto woman slave Called Pheby Hall and her son Will and daughter Nell liberty, freedom and manumission, and by these pre-
sents Do give and grant liberty, freedom and manumission and I do fully (?)-ate and discharge the said Pheby Hall and her son Will and daughter Nell from all manner of bondage, slavery and servitude from me my heirs Executors and administra-tors and assigns In witness where of I do hereunto set my hand and seal this twentieth
day of March in the year seventeen hundred and ninety.
Stephen Steward (seal)
The words “and daughter Nell” being first twice interlined.
On the back of the foregoing manumission was thus endorsed to wit
On the twentieth day of March 1790, Personally appeared the within named Stephen Steward senior before the subscriber one of the Judges of the general Court and acknowledged the within instrument of writing to be his act and According to the true intent and meaning thereof –
Acknowledged before J. Toy Chase
Recorded 20th March 1790
Anne Arundel County, Maryland Land Deeds: Liber NH, no. 5, 1789-1793, page 168, FHL film #13,218