1764 Deeds of Mechlenburg, Frederick County, Virginia

Submitted August 2011 by June Byrne


The beginnings of Shepherdstown go back to 1734 when the land it now stands on was patented to Thomas Shepherd. In 1734 the land was part of Orange County.

1734 Cavaliers and Pioneers, Volume IV 1732-1741, page 54:
Thomas Shepherd [Sheppard] 222 acres Sherrando L. To be Orange County on the West side of Sherrando River, S side of Couhongoluta and East side of a brook called Falling Spring; recorded 3 October 1734, page 306. [Note: The Potomac River was called the Cohongoroota until about 1745 according to an article in Historic Shepherdstown, page 49.]

1738
Frederick County was formed from Orange County. Its government was organized in 1743, and part of Augusta County was added later.


1762
 Henning’s Statutes, Volume 7: 600

An act for the establishing the town of Mecklenburg, in the County of Frederick.
I. Whereas it is represented to this present general assembly that Thomas Shepherd of the county of Frederick, hath laid off about fifty acres of his land on Potowmack River, in the said county, into lots and streets for a town, and hath disposed of many of the said lots, the purchases whereof have made their humble application that the said land may be established a town, being pleasantly and commodiously situated for trade and commerce.
II. Be it therefore enacted by the Lieutenant-Governour, Council and Burgesses, of this present General Assembly, and it is hereby enacted by the authority of the same.  That the lots and streets so laid off on the said land be, and are hereby constituted, appointed, erected and established, a town, to be called by the name of Mecklenburg, and that the freeholders and inhabitants of the said town, so soon as they shall have built upon and saved their deeds of conveyance, shall then be entitled to, and have and enjoy, the same privileges, rights, and advantages, which the freeholders and inhabitants of other towns erected by act of assembly in this colony do at present enjoy.

1766
Henning’s Statutes, Volume 8: 255-6

An Act giving permission to Mecklenburg to hold fairs twice a year, second Wednesday in June and the second Wednesday of October, in every year and to continue for two days, for the sale of all manner of cattle, victuals, provisions, goods, and merchandise, whatsoever.

1772
Berkeley County formed. Mecklenburg was in the part of Frederick County that became Berkeley County.


1775
Mecklenburg had a population of about a thousand.


1798
The name of Mecklenburg was officially changed to Shepherd’s Town. After the civil war, the name was shortened to Shepherdstown.  


Note that there were originally only 96 lots in Mecklenburg in 1762. Additional land was added by Act of Virginia in 1798 and is still part of the town. You can locate the original location of a lot by checking this map.  It is copied from Historic Shepherdstown, by Danske Danbridge, in 1910.  The book is now out of copyright and you can read the entire book on www.Google.com in their books section. It is a wonderful description of early life in Mecklenburg.  Dandridge states that this is a copy of the map created in 1798 and held in the county clerk’s office. Note the arrow at the bottom right which indicates that north is at the bottom of the map.      

Sheperdstown

 
These deeds are listed in the same order in which they appear in the deed book. Probably they were originally on small pieces of paper which some person or group of people carried to the courthouse which would have been in Winchester, Virginia in order to have them recorded. I do not believe that the original papers are still in existence so all we have is the copies in the deed book. Since they were transcribed into a deed book, some spelling errors may have been introduced at that time. This is especially true in the case of foreign names.  Also bear in mind that correct spelling is a 20th century concept.  Also they are clearly not in the order in which they were signed because some dated September 1764 are listed before some of those dated July 1764. They are in Lease and Release format.  This was a type of sale common then.  Each deed is listed as a lease and then as a release.  

Frederick County, Virginia Deed Records recorded 4 September 1764:
First purchases of lots in Mechlenburgh [later Sheperdstown, West Virginia] are all for 40 shillings with the same conditions. Unless otherwise stated, all land was part of land patented to Thomas Shepherd 3 October 1734. All lots are ½ acre. All of the lot deeds read word for word the same on the conditions of sale.  I have included all here which were recorded 4 September 1764.  A few of those are not for land inside the bounds of Mecklenburg.

All deeds are recorded 4 September 1764. These would have been recorded in Winchester, Virginia so probably someone made a trip there and carried all these deeds to be recorded. Note it was about six weeks after the July land sales.  

Book 9: 374. dated 21 July 1764
lot 58, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Benjamin Chaplin.
Wit: Wm. Ellis, Van Swearingen, One witness signed in German

Book 9: 377. dated 21 July 1764
Lot 22, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Jane daughter of Jacob Morgan and Jane, his wife, paid for by John Briscoe
Wit: John Hogdon, One witness signed in German

Book 9: 380 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 55, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Captain Van Swearingen       
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, one witness signed in German

Book 9: 384 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 56, in High Street Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Captain Van Swearingen
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, one witness signed in German

Book 9: 387 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 96, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Alexander Colwell said lot part of land surveyed by Captain Richard Morgan to Thomas Shepherd the 4th and 5th of August 1762.
No witnesses

Book 9: 390 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 33, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Henry Cocus
Wit: Wm Ellis, Wm Brown,

Book 9: 394 dated 21 July 1794
Lot 34, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Frederick Cocus
Wit: Wm Ellis, Wm Brown, Elisha Dungan

Book 9: 397 dated  21 July 1764
Lot 69, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to ? Cocus
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, Van Swearingen junior

Book 9: 401 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 29, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Philip Sower
Wit: Wm Ellis, Robert Mays, 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 404 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 91, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Robert Dixon
Wit: Wm Elllis, Isaac Morgan, Robert Mayes

Book 9: 407 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 95, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Robert Pickapack and 5/8 of an acre conveyed by Henry Cocus to Thomas Shepherd.
Wit: John Hogdon, 1 witness signed in German.

Book 9:411 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 26, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Michael Brooner
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen junior and 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 414 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 24, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Henry Shryder
Wit: Wm Ellis, Robert Dixon, one witness signed in German.

Book 9: 418 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 23, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Michael Coon.
Wit: Wm Ellis, Elisha Dungan, one witness signed in German

Book 9: 422 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 39, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Thomas Thornborough
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, Van Swearingen junior

Book 9: 425 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 57 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to David Shepherd.
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 428 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 89 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Thomas Boydstone
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, Van Swearingen junior

Book 9: 432 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 25, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Philip Clover
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, and 1 witness signed in German.

Book 9: 435 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 21, Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to William Brown.
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, one witness signed in German

Book 9: 438 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 60: Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Robert Mayo
Wit: Wm Ellis, Elisha Dungan; 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 442 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 28: Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to John Nealy
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearengen, Van Swearengen Junior

Book 9: 445 dated 3 September 1764
Lot 94: Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Henry Cocas
Wit: John Hogden, 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 449 dated 3 September 1764
Lot 93: Henry Cocus and Catherine, his wife, of Frederick County, to Thomas Shepherd. Land had been conveyed to Henry Cucus by Richard Morgen August 1762.  Parcel of land being part of lot 95 for 5 shillings. 5/8 acre.
Wit: John Hogden, 1 witness signed in German       Wife signed in German

Book 9: 451 dated 4 September 1764
Lot 93: Henry Cocus and Catherine, his wife to Thomas Shepherd, parcel of land 5/8 of an acre (same as above)
Wit: John Hogden, 1 witness signed in German      Signed Henry Cocus and Catroon Cocus

Book 9: 453 dated 4 September 1764
Henry Cocus and Catherine his wife of Frederick County to Nicholas Tusing, ½ acres adjoining the Town of Mecklenburg part of land conveyed by Richard Morgan to Henry Cocus in August 1762
Wit: John Hogdon 1 witness signed in German      
 
Book 9:456 dated 4 September 1764
Henry Cocus and Catherine his wife of Frederick County, to Michael Davis, ½ acre adjoining the Town of Mecklenburg part of land conveyed by Richard Morgan to Henry Cocus in August 1762.
Wit: John Hogdon, One witness signed in German     Henry Cocus and Catron Cocus.   

Book 9:459  4 September 1764
Henry Cocus and Catherine his wife of Frederick County to Aaron Lane, ½ acre of land adjoining Town of Mecklenburg, part of the land conveyed by Richard Morgan to Henry Cocus in August 1762
Wit: John Hogdon, One Witness signed in German

Book 9: 462 dated 4 September 1764
Henry Cocus and Catherine his wife of Frederick County to John Wright ½ lot adjoining Town of Mecklenburg part of tract conveyed by Richard Morgan to Henry Cocus the 3rd and 4th of August 1762.
Wit: John Hogdon, Henry Bedlinger

Book 9: 465 dated 4 September 1764
Henry Cocus and Catherine his wife of Frederick County to Henry Bedlinger One Acre of land adjoining Town of Mecklenburg part of tract conveyed by Richard Morgan to Henry Cocus August 1762
Wit John Hodgon, Wm Shepherd

Book 9: 468 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 65 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Isaac Morgan
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, Henry Bedlinger (in German)

Book 9: 471 dated 21 July 1744
Lot 64 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to John Hogden
Wit: Van Swearingen, Van Swearingen junior

Book 9: 474 dated 21 July 1764  
Lot 31 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Henry Bedinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, Elisha Dungan, one witness signed in German.

Book 9: 477 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 32 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Henry Bedinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, Elisha Dungan, Robt. Dixon

Book 9: 481 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 66 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Henry Bedinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, One witness signed in German, Robt Dixon

Book 9: 484 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 67 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Henry Bedlinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, One witness signed in German, Robt Dixon

Book 9: 487 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 90 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Elisha Dungan
Wit: Wm Ellis,1 witness signed in German, Robert Dixon

Book 9: 491 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 30 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Jeremiah Dungan
Wit: Wm Ellis, Robert Mays, One witness signed in German

Book 9: 494 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 61 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Jeremiah Dungan
Wit: Wm Ellis, Robert Mays, 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 498 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 27 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Peter Bedinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 501 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 68 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Peter Bedinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, 1 wit signed in German

Book 9: 505 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 78 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Peter Bedinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 508 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 81 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife, to Peter Bedinger
Wit: Wm Ellis, Robt Dixon, 1 witness signed in German

Book 9: 512 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 38 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth, his wife to Matthew Duncan
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, Van Swearingen junior

Book 9: 515: dated 21 July 1764
Lot 39 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Matthew Duncan
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, Van Swearingen junior

Book 9: 519 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 77 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to Matthew Duncan
Wit: Wm Ellis, Van Swearingen, Van Swearingen junior

Book 9: 522 dated 21 July 1764
Lot 93 Thomas Shepherd and Elizabeth his wife to George Myles
Wit: John Hogden one witness signed in German

These are extracted from the recorded deeds which are available at any Family History Center on FHL microfilm no. 31372, which contains Deed Books 9 and 10, which is 1763 to 1765.

You may also be interested in the following sources on early Shepherdstown and Frederick County, Virginia:
For more information about the early years of Shepherdstown, see
Historic Shepherdstown by Danske Dandridge, published 1911.
Since the book is out of copyright, Google has the book on its site where you can read it online free.
The History of Jefferson County, West Virginia, is available on Ancestry.com
Hening's Statutes at Large is also out of copyright and available free on Google Books.
Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and Their Descendants which is also out of copyright and available free on Google Books.



This webpage was donated by June Clover Byrne
Editor of the Clover Family Research Compendium

 

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