Commonwealth of Pennsylvania land grant for "Buckwheat Patch"
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Thomas McKean was born in Chester County, Pennsylvania, in 1734. He was admitted to the Delaware bar in 1754 and soon became active in Delaware politics. McKean was elected to the Delaware legislature in 1762, serving until 1779, with two stints as Speaker, in 1772 and 1777. When opposition arose to English policies, he represented Delaware at the 1765 Stamp Act Congress and helped organize Delaware's resistance to the Townshend Duties. During the Revolutionary years of 1774 to 1783, he served not only as Speaker of the Delaware Assembly, but also as Delaware representative to the Continental Congress, signing the Declaration of Independence and Articles of Confederation and briefly acting as the congress' president. In July of 1777 McKean began his twenty-two years on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, steering a moderate course and, with James Wilson, working for the successful 1787 ratification of the federal Constitution. He became a supporter of Pennsylvania’s Republican Party, and was elected Governor of Pennsylvania in 1799. He signed this land grant during his first term in office. McKean died in Philadelphia in 1817.
The firm of Francis & Robert Bailey, whose name appears below the Pennsylvania Coat of Arms on this document, was the official printer of the laws of Pennsylvania under Governor McKean. James Trimble, whose signature attested to the grant’s legality, was the first Deputy Secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, serving from 1777 until his death in 1837. The verso of the land grant was signed by Timothy Matlack, then state master of the rolls. Matlack was formerly a brewer and Revolutionary War leader.
This document granted the tract of land called “Buckwheat Patch” to John Moore, Executor of the Estate of Anne Simcock, deceased. Simcock, who described Moore as a “trusty friend” in her will, empowered him to sell her “Plantation in Sadsbury Township” and divide her estate equally amongst her children. Simcock’s will was proved on January 5, 1799.
Graff, Paul. “James Trimble, the First Deputy Secretary of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.” The Pennsylvania Magazine of History and Biography Vol. 5 No. 1 (1881): 82-84.University of Pennsylvania University Archives & Records Center webpage, “Penn Biographies: Thomas McKean” (accessed August 14, 2017) http://www.archives.upenn.edu/people/1700s/mckean_thos.htmlThe Will of Anne Simcock, West Bradford, Chester County, Pennsylvania, proved January 5, 1799. In the Dorothy Lapp Collection, Chester County, Pennsylvania Estate Papers, 1700-1800.Information derived from the collection.
A grant of land called “Buckwheat Patch” in Sadsbury Township, Chester County, Pennsylvania, to John Moore, executor of the estate of Anne Simcock, dated November 24, 1800. The grant is signed by Thomas McKean, then governor of Pennsylvania.
In this document, the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania granted John Moore title to 103 ½ acres of land in Sadsbury Township, in exchange for £26.2.0. The grant describes the boundaries of the land parcel in terms of various landmarks, including stones, posts, and trees, and notes that it abutted property owned by John Moore, James Moore, Andrew Moore, and Joseph Williams. Moore received the land for the “uses mentioned in the last Will and Testament of the said Ann Simcock deceased.” The grant was signed by Deputy Secretary of State James Trimble. Governor Thomas McKean signed the grant in the upper left-hand corner below a large paper state seal. An inscription on the verso next to the paper seal of the Enrollment Office of Pennsylvania reads “Inrolled in the Rolls Office in patent book 43 page 490. This 4th December 1800 Witness my hand & seal of Office/T. Matlack M.R.” Another inscription on the verso reads “Patent, John Moore, Executor in trust for the uses mentioned in the last Will of Anne Simcock, deceased 103 ½ acres land, Chester County.”
Purchase, May 2017
Processed and encoded by Elizabeth Jones-Minsinger, August 2017.
- Land grants--Pennsylvania
- Real property--Pennsylvania--Chester County--History--19th century
- Executors and administrators--Pennsylvania
- University of Delaware Library Special Collections
- Finding Aid Author
- University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
- Finding Aid Date
- 2017 August 18
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