Table of Contents:
1. John Courts I
2. John Courts II
3. John Courts III
4. Charity Courts Wade Adams Moore
5. Will of Robert Henley
6. James Keech
7. Miscellaneous References
JOHN COURTS I
Having found proof that John Courts is not the John Courts of Otley
Parish, I have removed reference to that line. See note below.
Died: 1697 Charles County, Maryland
John B: 19 Feb 1655 Charles Co, MD D: 1702 Charles Co, MD
M: Charity Henley
Elizabeth B: 16 May 1663 Charles Co, MD D: 1730 St.Mary’s
County, MD M: James Keech
Margaret B: 15 Jan 1665 Charles Co, MD D: 1668-1697
Note Disputing John Courts I’s Ancestry:A check of Otley Parish records indicates that the John Courts born
in Otley Parish in 1614 probably did not come to America. The
information below is from a person in England who does lookups
for Otley Parish. If you have concrete evidence otherwise, please let
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
The only John Coates, son of Francis Coates I can find in the
transcripts is for 1614. "Bapt. 16 Oct 1614 - John Coate, s. of
Francis Coate, Caley". Caley Hall is/was a big house near Pool, one
of the outlying villages of the Otley Parish. I find no other
references to Francis.
However, like you, I believe that John married Margaret Robinson,
daughter of Anthony Robinson & Mary Saxton at Otley on 7 Apr
1645. (There is no further information listed in the transcript about
the marriage.) Margaret's baptism records: "Bapt. 1 Oct 1620 -
Margaret Robinson, d. of Anthony Robinson".
From here the record appears to conflict with your information, in
that John & Margaret appear to have a son called Michael who
was baptised in 1646 (27 Sep), but was buried in 1648 (30 Jun).
And there are possibly 4 other children born between 1655 and
I also appear to have burial records for John (28 Aug 1679) and
Margaret (3 Mar 1693/4) - both pointing them to be residents of
Pool - this is, though, only my interpretation of all the data taken
from the Otley PRs. (If you can provide me with information that
can refute this I would be very happy to change my
I'm afraid that I cannot confirm information about Mary Saxton -
beyond the marriage date. The PRs do not record a baptism or
parentage for Mary - though I estimate she was born sometime
between 1579-1599. The date of death you passed on is shown in
the PR as the burial date of Lawrence Saxton (her supposed father.)
- I cannot find a burial
date recorded for Mary.
With respect to Lawrence Saxton, I can find only 4 childrens'
baptisms/burials registered in the Otley PR between 1601-1609
(John - 1601, Elizabeth - 1604, Jane - bur. 1608, Susanna - 1609) -
I can find no marriage recorded for him, but suspect that his wife's
name was Jane as "Jane Saxton, widow of Bramhope - bur. 18 Dec
All the information above has been taken from the Transcripts of
the Otley Parish Registers 1562-1753. To support/refute my
interpretation you would need to look back into family
documentation such as letters, probate/wills, land records, bills of
sale, etc. There are very few "official" records that were taken at this
time, but much of the records that remain would be found County
Records Offices in the UK.
Nic Wilson, Wharfedale and Craven Genealogical Project
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
John Courts came to America as a servant in 1635.
See the note following this article.
“Maryland Historical Magazine”, Volume VII, 1912, pp. 183-184,
Land Notes 1634-1655,
 Cecilius Lord Propr. of Mary-Land to all persons to
whomthese pents shall come Greeting. Know yee tht wee for & in
consideraon tht ffrancis Pope (Note 1) & Jno. Courts of the pro: of
Mary-Land Plantes. haue transported into or sd. pro: in the yeare
1645 to plant & inhabite there. And to the end the sayd ffrancis
Pope & Jno. Courts may be enabled to doe vunto us & or heyres
acceptable seruice wth or sd. pro: Haue of & wth the aduice of or
Trusty Thomas Greene Leiut. grall of or sd. pro: And according to
the Tenor of or lres under or hand & seale date att Portsmouth in
the Realme of England 8 Aug. 1636 & enrolled by or Secretary ofor
sd. pro” Gyuen & granted & by these pents doe giue grant &
Enfeoffe unto the sd. ffrancis Pope & Jno. Courts, All tht parcell of
Land, lying on the West side of Poplar Hill: bounding on the West
wth a Line of marke trees drawne south from a spring called Popes
Spring, into the second branch of Poplar Hill creek: On the West
wth a ffresh run called Courts fresh, into a swamp of the sd. Creek.
On the south wth the sd. Creek: On the north wth a line drawne
east from Popes spring into Couts fresh Conteyning & now layd out
for Two hund. acres, be it mor or lesse. And all woods, quares,
mines (Royall mines excepted), waters, fishings, & all other profitts
& commodities in or vapor the sd. Land. Saucing to vs & or heiress
or Royal jurisdiction & signatory as absolute Lords & Prepares. of
or. sd. pro: To hue and to hold the same veto them the sd. ffrancis
Pope & Jon. Courts & their heyres for eur. To be holden of vs, as
of or manor. of New Towne in ffree & common soccage, by ffealty
only for all seruices. Yielding & paying therfore yearley att or usuall
receipt att St. Maries fowre shillings in money sterl. or two Bushells
of good Corne, att the natiuity of or Lord. Guyen att St. Inegos ffort
this 3d. Aug. 1647. Witness or sd. Leiut grall.
Note (1) Francis Pope and John courts, to whom this patent was
granted, Aug. 3, 1647, are mentioned in Vol. VI, p. 200, as servants
brought into the Province in 1635 by James Neale; the surveyor’s
certificate for this same tract appears in the same volume at p. 369.
The patent is here set out in full to emphasize some of the
peculiarities of the records.
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
WILL of JOHN COURTS I
Maryland Calendar of Wills: Volume 2
Courts, John, Sr., Chas. Co., 27 Jan 1697; 15th Dec 1702.
To dau. Eliza: and her husband James Keech and hrs., dwelling
plantation and all lands belonging thereto except those already given
to son John Courte by deed of gift. To son John afsd. and hrs., 150
A., Martin's Freehold. To son John and son-in-law James Keech
and Eliza: his wife, all personalty. Exs.: Afsd. son and son-in-law.
Test: Blanch Lomax, Ann Cox, Cleborne Lomax. 11. 246.
Page 80 of book entry 461 of Charles County Court and Land
Records, Volume 1
John Clarke, Gent. sells his rights to a parcel of land formerly
surveyed by his father, Clarke Robert Clarke, Esq at the head of
Wicokomeco River: on a branch between land of Daniel Johnson
and John Courts containing 600 Acres to Henry Moore, 25 Feb
1661; /s/ John Clarke; wit. George Thompson, Henry Adams.
Deed 24 February 1699 From: John Clarke, , and of Charles and
St. Mary's Counties., planters. to John Courts( also spelled Coats,
Coarts), of Charles County Gent. Price 8250 lbs of tobacco
property: All the tract of land called Crouches Gift in P.G. Co. on
the north side of the main fresh on the head of Mattawoman or St.
Thomases Creek commonly known by the name of Notting,
bounding on land of John Clarke; 500 Acres. signatures: John
Clarke and wife Elizabeth, , and wife Judith, , 27 Feb 1699.
recorded : 14 November 1700, Vol. A., p. 293-A.
JOHN COURTS IIBorn: 16 or 19 Feb 1655 Charles Co, MD
Married: ca 1680
Died: 1702 Charles Co, MD
Father: John Courts I
Mother: Margaret Robinson
Wife: CHARITY HENLEYDied: 1703 Charles Co, MD
2nd Marriage: Col. John Contee
Father: Robert Henley
John B: 3 Mar 1691 Charles Co, MD D: 1747-8 Charles Co,
MD M: Elizabeth Barnes
Henley D: 1712
Charles D: ca 1760
William D: ca 1758 M: ? Elizabeth
Ann B: 29 Aug 1693 D: ca 1713 M: John Rogers 1708
Charity B: 4 Oct 1680 D: ca 1711 M: 1. Bayne Smallwood 2.
Daniel Dulany 1710
More information on JOHN COURTS II
“A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature
1635-1789”, Papenfuse, Day, Jordan & Stivenson
COURTS, JOHN (1655/56-1702).
BORN: in 1655/56 in Charles County; first son.
NATIVE: second generation.
RESIDED: in Charles County.
FATHER: John Courts, Sr. (?-1702), who immigrated in 1639 as
an indentured servant, but later became a substantial landowner.
MOTHER: Margaret, who immigrated by 1649 as an indentured
SISTER: Margaret (1665/66-?).
NATURAL SISTER: Elizabeth (1663 ?), who married Jama
Keech (ca. 1651-1708/9).
MARRIED Charity (?-1703), daughter of Robert Henley (ca
1617-1684). She subsequently married John Contee (?-1708).
PRIVATE CAREER/ EDUCATION: literate.
RELIGIOUS AFFILIATION: Anglican,
SOCIAL STATUS: His marriage brought upward social mobility,
with first offices coming shortly after his father-in-law’s death.
OCCUPATIONAL PROFILE: wheelwright;
PUBLIC CAREER LEGISLATIVE SERVICE: Associators'
Convention, Charles County, 1689-1692; Grand Committee of
Twenty, 1690-1692; Upper House, 1692-1693, 1694-1697,
1697/98-1700, 1701-1702 (died before the 4th session).
OTHER PROYINCIAL OFFICES: Councils 1691-1702; joint
commissary general, 1699-1700.
LOCAL OFFICES: justia, Charles County, 1685-1692; coroner,
Charles County, 1692; William and Mary Perish Vestry, Charles
MILITARY SERVICE: captain, 1689-1695; colonel 1695-1702;
STANDS ON PUBLIC/PRIVATE ISSUES: His active role in the
revolution of 1689 promoted him into office on the provincial level.
WEALTH DURING LIFE-TIME: LAND AT FIRST
ELECTION: over 1,000 acres (he Acquired a substatltial estate
from his father-in-law),
WEALTH AT DEATH: Died by November 1702. PERSONAL
PROPERY: TEV, L1815. 11.2 sterling (including 30 slave and 6
servants). LAND: 2260 acres.
Miscellaneous Deed involving John Courts
Deed 24 February 1699
From: John Clarke, Robert Clarke, Benjamin Clarke and Francis
Clarke of Charles and St. Mary's Counties., planters. to John
Courts (also spelled Coats, Coarts), of Charles County Gent. Price
8250 lbs of tobacco property: All the tract of land called Crouches
Gift in P.G. Co. on the north side of the main fresh on the head of
Mattawoman or St. Thomases Creek commonly known by the name
of Notting, bounding on land of John Clarke; 500 Acres.
signatures: John Clarke and wife Elizabeth, Robert Clarke,
Benjamin Clarke and wife Judith, Frances Clarke, 27 Feb 1699.
recorded : 14 November 1700, Vol. A., p. 293-A.
JOHN COURTS IIIBorn: 3 Mar 1691 Charles Co, MD
Note: His birthdate may have been as early as 1786.
Died: 16-19 Jan 1747 Charles Co, MD
Lived Also: Father: John Courts II
Mother: Charity Henley
There is much dispute over the names and number of wives of John
Courts III. The following is just one opinion.
William M: ? 1. Elizabeth Thomas * ? 2. Priscilla Smallwood **
ELIZABETH YATE OR YEATESShe is variously listed as the daughter of
(1) Reverend BartholomewYates and Sallie Mickleborough,
(2) Major Robert Yates or Yeates and Sallie Mickleborough or
(3) Major Robert Yates and Rebecca Young.
Charity B: ca 1712 M: 1. Zachariah Wade 1729 2. Samuel
Adams 1737 2. Samuel Moore ca 1750
Mary Ann M: John Martine
Elizabeth M: Charles Jones
Father: Matthew Barnes.Possible Children:
Robert Henley B: 1723 D: 1775 M: Elizabeth Ridings
Some Barnes notes:“Charles County, Maryland”, DAR
p54 Godshall Barnes son of Matthew and Elizabeth Barnes of
Port Tobacco born 20 Dec 1692.
p55 Godshall Barnes s/o Matthews and Bayly, “near Pope’s
Creek” born 20 Jan 1680.
Notes from “IGI” ?
John Courts III and Elizabeth Barnes Children: William (16 Jan
1747), John, Robert Henley, Ann, Charity, Mary Ann,
Will of Matthew Barnes (second hand information)
Matthew Barnes Jun (1745-10 Jan 1746)
Charles County, Maryland
Mentions daughter Elizabeth Courts
ANN WHYTEJohn may have married a fourth time to Ann Whyte, daughter of
Bernard & Ellinore Whyte. No record of children has been found.
CHARITY COURTS (d/o John Courts III)Born: Charles Co, MD
Married: (1) Zachariah Wade 1731 (2) Samuel Adams 1737 [Will
Proved 10 Sep 1748] (2) Samuel Moore [Before 19 Feb 1750]
Children by First Marriage:
[Zachariah Wade was first married to Henrietta Barnes and had two
children: Richard b.1725 and Zachariah b.1727]
1. John Courts 1733
Children by Second Marriage:
1. Tabitha Adams B:1738 D:1776 M: Gen. William Russell of
Culpeper Co, VA
2. Celia Adams 1740 M: Joseph Stephens
3. Athaleah Adams 1740 (twin) M: Joseph Hopewell
4. Chloe Adams 1742
5. Henley Adams 1744
Children by Third Marriage:
1. William Moore B:3 Mar 1753 Louisa Co, VA M: 1.Hannah
Ransdell Fauquier Co, VA 2. Margaret Browning 24 Aug 1812
Fayette Co, KY D: 10 May 1816 Fayette Co, KY
Note 1. Another source says that Samuel and Charity’s son was
Henley Moore who married Jane Russell.
Note 2. Another source says that William Moore was the son of
Daniel Moore and another Charity Courts.
Note 3. William Moore and Hannah Ransdell named children
Henley, Samuel and Coates. He did not name a child Daniel.
Note 4. Samuel Moore may have been born in New Hampshire in
1723 and he may have been the son of a William Moore.
Will of Robert Henley
Henly, Robert, Pyckywaxen,Chas. Co.,
15th Feb., 1683; 31st Mch., 1684.
To Bethsheba and Mary, daus. of Thomas Harris, Eliza: Nichols
and grandddau. Charity, dau. of John and Charity Courts,
personalty. To son-in law John Courts, Charity, his wife, and hrs.,
residue of estate, real and personal.
Ex. Son-in-law John Courts afsd.
Test: Edward Lee, Richd. Gent, Cleborne Lomax, Margaret
Maystis. 4. 31.
son in law of John Courts I
Captain James Keech was born 1651 in England and immigrated to
Maryland about 1671. He died in St. Mary's Co. before 25 Mar
1708, which is the date of his will probate. He married Elizabeth
Courts, daughter of John Courts I and Margaret Robinson.
Elizabeth Courts was born 16 May 1663 and died 1730 in St.
Mary's Co., Maryland.
Children of James Keech and Elizabeth Courts:
1. James Keech Jr. died 1726 in St. Mary's Co., MD. He married
first Ruth Hawkins 1698/1704 and second Mary Hawkins (by
1712), both daughters of Henry Hawkins and his second wife
Elizabeth Hebden (Wine) widow of Francis Wine. Henry Hawkins
died 1699 in Charles Co. and Elizabeth Hebden died in Charles Co.
James Keech and 2nd wife Mary Hawkins had :
a. James Keech married and had an only child, Elizabeth.
b. Samuel Keech married Dorcas [?]. A son James Keech b. Nov
1747 and died 1800/1803 in St. Mary's Co. He married Ann Estep.
2. John Keech
3. Courts Keech b. 1688 in St. Mary's Co. and died 1754 in Charles
County. He was married and had children.
4. Margaret Keech married Christopher Horrell, Jr.
WILL of JAMES KEECHMaryland Calendar of Wills: Volume 3 Keech, James, St. Mary's
Co., 25th Mch., 1708.
To wife Elizabeth, extx., estate, real and personal, during
widowhood; at her decease or marriage real estate to pass to 4
child., James, John, Courts and Margarett, as follows:
To son James and hrs., dwelling plantation and adjoining land, also
Towne Neck, Charles Lott and Satisfaccon.
To son John and hrs., Good Luck.
To son Courts, all land given testator and wife by father John
To dau. Margarett and hrs., Recompense.
Son James is charged not to disturb son Courts upon penalty of
losing his inheritance.
Robert Sturton, Samuel William and Thos. Taney to settle any
disputed points concerning estate.
Test: Robt. Stourton, Thos. Taney, Chas. Smith. 12. 215.
Miscellaneous Deed envolving James Keech
Deed 24 February 1699
From John Clarke, Robert Clarke, Benjamin Clarke, and Francis
Clarke of Charles and St. Mary's Co.s, planters.
to William Herbert of Charles Co. Price 8650 lbs. Tobacco
Property: 100 Acre tract called "Clarkes Purchase" in P.G., on the
North side of the Main fresh of Mattawoman on St. Thomases
Creek, commonly known as Notting; Adjoining land of Robert
Clarke. Signatures John Clarke, Robert Clarke, Benjamin Clarke,
and Francis Clarke.
wit.: Phillip Hosskins, JAMES KEECH, Bridgett Tandell (Bridgett
ackn'd: John Clarke and wife Elizabeth, Robert Clarke, Benjamin
Clarke and wife Judith, and Francis Clarke, 24 February 1699.
Recorded: (date unspecified), Vol. A, p. 237.
Philip Hoskins married Ann Mathews (Mudd) dau. of Dr. Thomas
Matthews and Jane Cockshutt and widow of Thomas Mudd Sr.
James KEECH married Elizabeth COURTS.
7. MISCELLANEOUS REFERENCES
a. VIRGINIA HISTORICAL MAGAZINE Vol. 6?, “Warren of
Virgina and Maryland” .... The third daughter of the Rev. Mr.
Stone, Mary Ann Harrison Stone, married, 1821 Captain Charles
Chilton Moore of “Forest Retreat”, Fayette county, Ky., who served
with distinction in the War of 1812. He was a son of William
Moore, of Culpeper county, Va., 1753-1818, a Lieutenant in 3d
Regiment, Virginia Line, a son of Samuel Moore, planter, of
Charles county, Md., And his wife, Charity (widow of Samuel
Adams, planter, of Charles county, died 1748), daughter of Colonel
John Courts, of the manor of “Clean Drinking”, in Charles (now in
Montgomery) county, Md., died 1747.
Colonel Courts was of the family of Courts or Courte, of
Stoke-Gregory in Somerset. The founder of the Maryland branch
was “the Honorable Captain John Courte, gent.,” who was Burgess
and member of the Maryland Assembly, and member of the
Governor’s Council till his death in 1697. His son, Colonel John
Courts, gent., was, in 1699, granted the manor of Clean Drinking
(now owned by his descendant, Colonel Jones, and, after serving in
many public Charles county offices died 1792, having issue the
aforesaid Colonel John Courts, who died 1747. Some of his
descendants in the Sourth write their surname as it is pronounced,
Miscellaneous Notes on Keech and Courts from Charles County forum:
Elisabeth Hawkins 1.129 A Ch L211.19.7 L46.3.3 Sep 18 1718
Received from Capt Thomas Dent, Benjamin Borgess, Thomas Martin, John
Brooks. Payments to John Lowe, Charles Mosgrove, Robert Harrison, Mr.
Maconchie. Legatees: Elisabeth & Martha Keech paid to their father James
Keech. Residue to executor. Executor Henry Hawkins.
Elinor Bayne Chas Co 5th Nov 1701, 11th Nov 1701.
To Walter and Ebsworth Bayne, Ellinor Hubbard, Eliza Stone, Ellinor Stone,
Eliza Dutton and each of her child. and sister (unamed) in Eng. Mrs.
Charity Courts, and to daus. Ellinor Beale and Ann Bayne, personalty. Ex:
Son John Bayne in event of his return from Eng: other wise grandson Walter
Bayne to be ex at 21 yrs of age and to be advised by his father (unamed), or
Col. John Courts. Test: Philip Briscoe, Wm Richardson, Wm Howells 11, 298
John Bayne Chas Co., 5th Oct 1700 25th Oct 1701
To godchild, viz., Bayne Smallwood, Bayne Griggs and all other god child.
*unnamed) personalty. wife Ann, extx, life interest in 150 A on Piscataway
on n. e side Locust Thicket bought of Wm Hutchison. son Ebsworth, 800 a
Breathwood; 200 a Indian Cabin; 200 A Nevetts Desire; and tract afsd at dec
of mother; also 2 tracts bought of Benj Posey, 100 a Muddle's Branch and 100
a (unnamed) obtained by Jno Posey from Nich. Bellaine by deed. and 800 A
part of land contained in a warrant of 2000 A dau Ann and hars 300 A lying
on a die Locust Thicket, part of sd warrant and 1/2 of Locust Thicket,
already given her by deed of gift. To son Walter and hrs residue of sd
warrant lying on the n. side of Locust Thicket and residue of all lands at
dec of wife Ann except, The Meadows, which already belongs to son Ebsworth
afsd. Col Joh Courts, Maj. James Smallwood and col. John Addison trustees
personalty. wife and 3 child. afsd. residue of personalty; division to be
made at marriage or death of wife. Test: Bellinor Bayne, Ellinor Beal,
Thos. Whicholey, Wm. Hold, Jos. Cowper. 11, 317.
Bayne Smallwood Port Tobaddo Chas Co 28th June 17--, 2nd Dec 1709.
To brother James Smallwood, ex. and rest of brothers and sisters all estate
which cambe by father___. sd father personalty. wife Charity, all estate
which came through her father, Col. Jno Courts. Test: Jno Done Thos. Clark
Wm. Foster part 1--12,208.
James Keech St. Mary's Co ----- 25th Mch 1708
to wife Elizabeth, extx estate, real and personal, during widowhood; at her
dec or marriage real estate to pass to 4 child. James, John, Courts and
Margaret, as follows: son James and hrs dwelling plantatin and adj land,
also Towne Neck, Charles Lott and Satisfaccon. son John and hrs. Good
Luck. son Courts all land given testator and wife by father John Courts.
dau Margarett and hrs. Recompense. Son James is charged not to disturb son
Courts upon penalty of losing his inheritance. Robert Sturton, Samuel
William and thos Taney to settle any disputed points concerning estate.
Test Robt. Stourton, Thos Taney, Chas Smicht 12, 215
James Keech, gent St. Mary's Co 14th Jan 1725 2nd Mch 1725-6
To wife Mary extx, entire real estate from the River to Hill Fields,
formerly Kennedy, during life; use of entire personal esteate during
widoowhood. shld she marry, 2/3 tereof to all living children by sd wife
Mary equally. son Samuel and hrs Hills Fields an dDraiton. 2 daus Mary and
Dorothy and unborn child and their hrs, Charles Lot; shld all die without
issue to pass to son James and hrs. daus. Elizabeth and Marth personalty.
Overseer Bro Courts Keech Test: Charles Ashcom, James Crooke, Philli0p Key
(James Crooke dec'd at date of probate) 18,473
Mary Louise Donnelly in her book "My Colonial Ancestors, Plus Others", says
Elinor Bayne was born around 1648 in Charles County, Md, the dau of Walter
Bayne 2 and Elinor___. She married first Edward Philpott. Edward Philpot
was the progenitor of those by this name found in Charles County, MD. No
recrod was found for when Edw Philpott entered th Province of Md. Termed
wheelwright, he was in Chas Co on 5/6/1659 when 100 acres of "Philpott" was
surveyed for him. In 1666 he obtained 100 acres called Courts Palace fro
John Courts, adj his other tract Deed c: 54) Later both of these tracts were
inpossession of his son John Philpott. Edw Philpott was dec. by 3/20/1679
when his estate was appraised. valued at 6,976 pounds of tobbaco (Inv 7a61)
Two of their daughters are known from the will of their single son John
Philpott. *******THIS IS for the most part INCORRECT.******** Edw
Philpott was married to Bridgett unknown, had three children, Edw, Chas and
Mary. Chas apptly died. young. Edw. Philpott, II, married Susannah Posey
and had children. Edw II, married 2ndly Eleanor/Elinor Hawkins Tubman
Smallwood. Edw. Philpott, II's son Charles Philpott married Elizabeth
1512 Parkview Drive