A Garden, A Mark, and Evidence of a Relationship

There are several lessons in this assignment of property from John Demoss of Harford County, Maryland.

One is that some individuals literally make a mark when “making their mark.” That’s not an “x” John Demoss made when he “signed” this property transfer. I cannot say if there is any significance to the fact that John’s mark is after his name or not.

The second is that it confirms that John Demoss was the father of John Demoss, Junr. One cannot always conclude based upon names alone that a junior is the son of another man with the same name. This document makes it pretty clear as John Demoss Junr. is styled as “my son.”

The third thing is that I cannot be quite clear when John Demoss executed this property transfer to his son as it is undated. It would have to have been before 16 July 1802 when the property was patented to John Demoss, Junior. In some cases dates such as this may be crucial if there are not documents that directly provide a date of death.

The patent The certificate of survey gives specific metes and bounds description for this piece of property, “Demosses Farm.” There is also another piece of property, “Demosses Garden,” which has a similar assignment from John Demoss. [The first sentence of this paragraph was edited to correctly indicate that this image is from the “certificate of survey” rather than the patent, which a reader graciously pointed out.]

The titles of the property and the accompanying metes and bounds descriptions may make it easier to concretely tie later records of John Demoss in Harford County with the one referenced in this document.



9 thoughts on “A Garden, A Mark, and Evidence of a Relationship

  1. The images are from the Certificate of Survey file at http://www.plats.net‘s section for Harford County (Patented Certificate no. 223), rather than from patent records. How lovely that the abstractor and indexer in this case managed to get spelling right. This is often not so.

    • Maybe, but John used that same mark in an earlier document from the 1760s–or at least one that is fairly similar.

      • Laura J Miller says:

        An active DeMoss thread! Does anyone know where our DeMoss ancestor in this country came from? It’s not my direct paternal line (my DeMoss was a woman who married into my paternal line in southern Indiana in the late 1800s). It would be great if a male descendant would have a Y DNA test done!

        Regarding the mark-interesting and good catch! Could that give a hint as to where he was from?

  2. Mary T Fobian says:

    I welcome communication from anyone in this thread who 1) has knowledge of a possible sister of John’s, named Catherine deMoss (born circa 1740, married James Johnson circa 1766); and/or 2) who has submitted DNA to any of the major platforms. Please contact me at maryfobian@comcast.net.

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