1811 Land Deed Revolutionary War Soldier Signature-Antique Manuscript
This is a land deed signed by Elijah Thomas (1747-1829) who was a soldier in the Revolutionary War. He was from Middleboro, MA and married Martha Pratt on Dec 20, 1764. They had ten children, two of which Lucy (who never married) and Zenas signed this deed as witnesses.
The deed is for land that was part of the original 'Taunton South Purchase' that the English founders of the town purchased from the Nemasket Indians in 1637 as part of the Tetiquet Purchase. In the deed, Elijah describes the land as "lying in said Middleborough and being a part of the 83rd lott in number of the 'South Purchase'(so called)". He goes on to describe the boundaries and then lists it as 23 acres 'be it more or less'.
It is completely handwritten and looks to be written by Elijah himself.
It is on ordinary paper and not 'deed' paper with Elijah's signature and seal on the bottom right of the deed.
Below is Elijah's military history:
"Thomas, Elijah. Private, Capt. Abishai Tinkham's co., in a regiment commanded
by Col. Ebenezer Sprout, of Middleborough; service, 15 days, on the alarm at
Rhode Island of Dec. 8, 1776; also, 2d Corporal, same co. and regt.; entered
service May 6; discharged May 9; entered service Sept. 3; discharged Sept.
12; service, 9 days; company marched from Middleborough to Dartmouth on
two alarms in 1778; also. Corporal, Capt. Tinkham's co.. Col. White's regt. ;
entered service Aug. 1, 1780; discharged Aug. 9, 1780; service, 9 days, on an
alarm at Rhode Island. "
Land deeds like this one are sometimes the only information available to us about life during the 18th and early 19th centuries. From this type of document, we learn where people lived, their status in life, the amount of land they owned, who their neighbors were, and the names of their wives and children. Many times a child or wife's name will appear in these deeds that has been omitted from the genealogical records of our ancestors. To find the true story of your ancestors, land deeds and other contemporaneous documents are the most important documents to use.
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