Monday, February 17, 2014

Mappy Monday - Following the Trail of Hawkins Pharsalia - Part II

In my last post on Hawkins Pharsalia, I sorted out some of the John Councells in my tree, but wasn't sure how Henry Councell fit into the mix. In the land records I was looking at, Henry Councell bought the part of Hawkins Pharsalia that had been left to Edward Carey Councell by John Councell "the Elder". The sale was documented in 1811 and was approved by several other Councell relatives.

In 1813, Henry Councell and his wife Sarah sold the land to John Councell, Jr., son of Edward Carey Councell. The following excerpt from Queen Anne's County Court Book JB 2, page 214 documents that Henry was the son of John Councell "the Elder" and grandfather of John Councell, Jr. The deed was recorded on December 4, 1813 and this record is available on the site.

Book JB 2, page 214, Queen Anne's County Court, Maryland

...that part of the tract of Land called and known by the name of Hawkins Pharsalia which the late John Councell (Father of the said Henry Councell and grandfather of the said John Councell Jnr. did by his Last Will and Testament devise to his son Edward Cary Councell Father of the said John Councell Jnr.) which said part of said Tract not being sufficient to bear a Division between the several heirs of the said Edward Cary Councell as adjudged by Commissioners appointed by the court of Queen Anns County for that purpose and the said John Councell Jnr. being the eldest heir made his election to take said Land at the valuation set upon it by said Commissioners and did by a Deed of sale bearing Date the fourth Day of January in the year of our Lord Eighteen hundred and eleven convey the same to the said Henry Councell being devised therein by John Councell Snr? William Councell Elijah Councell and Thomas Councell for the purpose of supplying? a Deficiency in the Will of the late John Councell ? together with all and singular the Buildings improvements wood ways waters...

The Land Commission denied Edward Councell's heirs' request to split up the land in 1811. At that point, Henry Councell bought it with the approval of Edward's sons and then sold it back to John Councell (son of Edward) in 1813. I'm not sure what the "deficiency" was in the will of "the late John Councell", but I'm guessing it was that he didn't specify how the land should be divided in the case of the death of his son Edward. Several family trees on have Edward's year of death as 1797 which was the year after Edward's father John died.

This land record provided a little more clarification as to why the land switched back and forth between Henry and his grandson John. Next up is to investigate Edward Carey Councell. Are there any estate papers for him? My Councill tree as it stands now is shown below. John Councell Jr. was my 3x great-grandfather and his son Francis was my 2x great-grandfather. At some point my family started using the Councill spelling, so I have used that in the tree.

Mappy Monday is a GeneaBloggers prompt where you can post map images and how they relate to your research or discuss other aspects of land ownership and your ancestor. 


  1. Mid-1700s, Hawkins' Pharsalia was owned by Robert Thomas, son of Trustram and Jane Thomas, according to L. B. Thomas ("Thomas, of Queen Anne's County, MD." in The Thomas Book; 1896, 158).

    1. Thanks! That piece of land definitely has some interesting history. Many names got attached to it as it was broken up into smaller pieces. Thanks for mentioning The Thomas Book. I hadn't seen that one before, but just found it online. I see mentions of Meredith and Sparks in there which may be related to some of my other lines.