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Maryland   Beginnings


Researched and Compiled by

Carol Collins & Mary Glenn

     Families of Masters, Veitch, Gatton and Selby can be found in early  
times living in the same neighborhood of Peebleshire and Roxburghshire,      
in the lowlands of Scotland.  At the time of the Civil Wars in Scotland, 
beginning about 1648, a large exodus of Scots to Ireland, Barbadoes,   
Virginia and Maryland began.

     James Veitch was the first to arrive on our shores.  A very good
account of this family can be found in Laurence R. Guthrie's We Veitches.

     He settled in Calvert Co., Md.  Unfortunately, there are very few
early records now available for this county due to courthouse fires.
Though some land records are found for him, none can be found for the
Masters, or for the other families, who must have lived near the Veitches.

     In 1652 Ninian Beale, of Largo, Fifeshire, began patenting a large
amount of land in what is now Prince Georges' Co, Md., and offered a
settlement area to those Scots wishing to leave Scotland at this time of
trial.  The Masters, Veitches, Gattons, etc. eventually also moved to this
area, called "Scots Hundred" and here we find the majority of the records.

     At least four Masters can be found in early passenger lists:  James,
Thomas, Robert and William, who arrived late 1670's to the Eastern Shores
of Maryland and Virginia.  One of these men is undoubtedly the immigrant
and father of the first Masters of record in what later became Prince
Georges' County, Maryland.

     Prince Georges' was developed in 1696 from sections of Charles and
Calvert Counties.  Later Frederick Co. in 1748 was taken from the
Northwest section of Prince Georges' Co. only to then be divided in 1776
into Frederick and Montgomery Counties.  In 1790 when the United States
capital was established on neutral ground a portion of Southeast
Montgomery Co.  and Western Prince Georges' Co.  was given by Maryland
to form the District of Columbia.  The Masters land happened to fall into
these sections.  It should be noted that a study of the subdivision of
these counties is necessary to understand the residences of the Masters
family and those families with which they intermarried.

                      William Masters, Sr.

     The first known record of William Masters, Sr., who used the  mark
"W", is the purchase of pew no. 12 in the St. John's Broad Creek parish,
in March 1715.  (These records can be found in the Maryland Historical
Society, Baltimore, Md.) This pew was sold by the family in June, 1770.
William served as the church warden in the parish for many years.

     His wife, Mary Veitch, was the daughter of Nathan and Ann (Clagget)
Veitch. Nathan left land in 1702 by his will (PG Co. Liber C, fol. 14) to
his daughter, Mary, called "Hopeful Blessing".  This land was sold
(Charles Co.  Liber O, no.  2, fol. 206) by William and Mary in 1737 to
Thomas Farrand.  At the death of Nathan his wife, Ann, married Richard
Weaver.  Her will (PG Liber A, fol.  378) bears this out.

     In 1716 William served as administrator for his father, Robert's,
estate.  (Queen Ann Co. Liber 37A, fol. 68 and PG Co. Liber BE no 1, fol.
261) William, along with his father in law, Richard Weaver, bound
themselves for 50 pounds sterling to serve as administrator on this
estate (PG Co. Adm.  Bonds, p. 94)

     In 1720 Daniel Kelly deposed that in about the year 1718 he saw
William's son, Nathan, who was at that time about 4 years of age, on
William's plantation.  Nathan had his ear partially bitten off by his
father's gray mare.  (PG Co. Liber I, fol. 87).

     This, plus the complaint filed by William in 1744 against Priscilla
Wilson for the administration of Nathan and Frances' estate, proves the
relationship of father and son. (HR: Test. Proc. Box 46, fol. 4)  This
complaint also states that Frances was the daughter of Priscilla Wilson,
widow.  Land records and administration of inventory records state that
Priscilla was the widow of Thomas Wilson.(PG Co. Liber BB, fol. 278 and
Fred.  Co. Orphan's Court Liber A no 1, fol. 159). The Wadsworth Family of
America, by Mary Jane Fry Wadsworth, gives the maiden name of Priscilla as

     William acquired several pieces of property over the next few years.
In 1718 he patented 100 acres of Gum Spring out of a warrant to Thomas
Addison (Certificate of Patent: IL #A, fol. 818) which he sold in 1722 to
his brother in law, John Veatch (PG Co. Liber I, fol. 307).  In 1720 he
bought 383 acres from Daniel Dulaney called Discovery (PG Co.  Liber I,
fol.  87).  This property bordered on the Eastern Branch called, in 1989,
the Anacosta River.  His son in law, Ezekiel Goslin, husband of daughter,
Elizabeth, bought in 1736 127 acres of Discovery.  The deed was recorded
both 1736 and 1737 (PG Co.  Liber T, fol.  308 and 525).  At the same
time, William sold, for 5 shillings, Thoroughfare, to his son Robert
(PG Co: Liber T, fol.  526).  It is the deduction of these writers that
William sold this land to his family members at the time of their

     In 1744 William purchased, along with John Veatch, 132 acres of
"Progress".  John took 80 acres and William received 52 acres. (PG Co.
Liber BB, fol. 112).  William immediately leased these 52 acres to Ezekiel
Goslin for rent and the construction of buildings (PG Liber BB, fol. 237).
In 1770 he sold the 52 acres to Elizabeth Goslin (Fred. Co. Liber N, fol.
149) Ezekiel had died 1767 with instructions that all his lands be sold.
Elizabeth later disposed of the land and moved with other family members
to the Moravian settlement of Wachovia in North Carolina.   She died
March, 1802, and is buried in Hope, N.C. in the Old Cemetery.

     William Jr. purchased 52 acres of Discovery for 5 shillings (PG Liber
RR, fol 342) from his father.  The deduction of these writers is that
William Jr.  and wife, Margaret, had perhaps been living on other land of
William, Sr., but in 1755 William Jr., became enamored of a young woman,
Tryphenia North, and asked his father for some land.

     These writers are of the opinion that the possibility exists that
Tryphenia was the step-daughter of his sister, Elizabeth Goslin.  She
probably was fair of face and personality and his marriage to Margaret
had not worked.

     We can only surmise what Margaret was left to do in raising her three
small children. Thomas Windom, who was distantly related to the Masters
family through the marriage of William, Sr.'s, sister to William Norris
and also possibly to Margaret came to the rescue.  She more than likely
kept house for the bachelor and in return provided for her and her
children.  When he died 1767 he left his personal estate and land,
Fletchall's Chance, to William, son of Margaret Masters, in her trust.
(Fred.  Co. Liber A no 1, fol.  190).

     William, Sr., did not in effect, leave a will but on 1760, perhaps
because of old age, made a deed of gift to his three surviving children,
Robert, Elizabeth Goslin and William, Jr. (PG Co. Liber RR, fol. 60) The
deed of gift left increase of slave, Bess, and a small sum to Robert and
Elizabeth.  William, Jr., was to receive Bess and all home plantation
lands at the death of William, Sr.

    His son, Robert, pre-deceased him in 1770 (Frederick Co. Inventory Bk
CIV, fol. 175).  Both William Sr.  and Jr.  signed as kin on the inventory.
(Fred.  Co.  Lib.  104, fol.  175) Robert's wife, Mary, is thought by some
family members to be a Wilson, more specifically another daughter of
Thomas and Priscilla Kent Wilson.  This has not been proven by documents
available today.  Robert with his brother, Nathan, signed the petition for
the creation of All Saints Parish in 1742.  This was a division of Prince
Georges' parish in the early settlement of Frederick Co., Md.  He was also
paid 1 lb 10 shillings for quartering soldiers in the French and Indian War
(Md.  Historical Magazine, vol. 9, p. 260).

    Robert's land, Thoroughfare, was left for son, Notley, to dispose of as
he wished.  This is the family that traveled with Elizabeth Goslin and her
family to North Carolina 1772. (Fries: Records of the Moravians in North
Carolina), Family records show that the children went to North and South
Carolina and Tennessee.

     William Jr. died in 1777 and left in his will a small sum for each of
the three children belonging to Margaret Masters, Sarah, William and
Verlinda.  The lands and personal estate were left to John and William
North, sons of Tryphenia and the seven children of William and Tryphenia
North.  (PG Co. Wills Box 12 folder 9; Inv. Box 25, folder 50; Final
Account, Liber ST no 1, fol. 53)

     For purposes of identification of Margaret and Tryphenia the
following is offered as possible solutions. Margaret would appear to be
a daughter of either a Norris or a Bryan family.  Reasons for this
conclusion is drawn from the reading of Thomas Windom's will.

     Tryphenia is a little more difficult to explain.  In looking at the
total picture of possible relationships, if Tryphenia is the daughter of
Ezekial Goslin and a first wife (We Veitches states Elizabeth Veatch
married Ezekial Goslin) she would have been raised in the household of
Ezekiel and Elizabeth Masters Goslin.  The records of the Moravians state
a daughter, Taffena, was left in Maryland when Elizabeth Goslin and family
moved to North Carolina.  We can find no records of her North marriage or
that she was a North by birth.

     Family records show that the children of William and Margaret went to
North Carolina, Virginia, Kentucky and Kansas. The children of William and
Tryphenia went to Kentucky and Indiana, Ohio, Nebraska and Kansas.

     This completes an overview of the first two generations of documented
Masters in Maryland.


PG Liber I, fol. 87-9 (12 Dec. 1720): fr. Charles and Mary Beale, for 2000
lb.  good tobacco: Discovery; beginning on north side of fresh called Oxon
at first bounded tree of None such; equalling 383 acres fee simple;
surveyed 5 Sept.  1714 for Charles Beale, part of warrant granted Charles
Beale 23 April 1714.

PG Liber I, fol. 307-9 (13 March 1721/2): to John Wilcoxin for 3000 lbs
tobacco: Gum Spring, beginning at bounded white oak standing near a draught
of a creek called Oxon, equalling 100 acres; wife Mary signed.

PG Liber T, fol. 525-26 (23 Aug. 1737): to Ezekial Goslin, joyner, for 5
shillings: Discovery, beginning at end of fifth line of that part laid out
for John Veatch now in possession of Lewis Wilcoxin, equalling 127 acres;
Wife Mary signed.

PG Liber T, fol. 526-7 (15 Sept. 1737): to Robert Masters, joyner, for two
shillings: Thoroughfair, beginning at box Elder near West end of a fair
Island in Potomack named Fair Island, equalling 100 acres fee simple; wife
Mary signed, recorded at the request of Ezekiel Goslin.

Charles Liber O no 2, fol. 206-7 (23 Aug. 1737): to William and Mary, his
wife, to Thomas Farrand, of St. Mary's Co.: Hopeful Blessing, beginning at
a bound white oak standing on the south west side of a small branch which
runs into Piles Fresh; 50 acres.

PG Liber BB no 1, fol. 112-3 (20 Feb. 1743/4) with John Veatch from Daniel
Dulany of Annapolis, Esq., for 33 lbs sterling: Progress, on Potomac River
2 miles below mouth of Monocacy River; equalling 132 acres.

PG Liber BB no 1, fol. 175 (29 Aug. 1744): from John Veatch for five
shillings: Prograce, bounded white oak standing near brink of Potomack
River (first bounded tree of said Prograce); equalling 52 acres; wife Mary

PG Liber BB no 1, fol. 176-78 (29 Aug. 1744): to John Veatch for 8
shillings: Progress, beginning at end of the 54th perch of the second line;
equalling 80 acres; wife Mary signed.

PG Liber BB, fol. 237-8 (8 Nov. 1744): to Ezekiel Goslin, joyner, for
yearly rents and covenants: Progress; equalling 52 acres.

PG Liber NN, fol. 342-3 (16 Jan. 1755), to William Masters, Jr. for tender
regard, love and natural affection for his son: Discovery, lying on south
side of eastern branch of Potomac River; equalling 52 acres; wife, Mary,

PG Liber RR, fol. 60-61 (8 July 1760): to well beloved son, Robert, well
beloved daughter, Elizabeth Goslin, well beloved son, William Masters:
Negro, Bess with increase, William to have all lands I possess with house
and plantation and all appurtenances when William, Sr. dies; no wife

Fred Liber N, fol. 149-50 (9 June 1770): to Elizabeth Goslin, spinstress of
Frederick Co., for 30 lbs currant money: Progress, equalling 52 acres; no
wife signed.

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