Record of the Committee for the Sale of Estates of Absentees in Suffolk County, 1781-1785

Massachusetts General Court Committees for the Sale of Absentee Estates


1 v. (partial doc. box).
In two subseries: (1) Journal; arranged chronologically (2) Ledger; arranged by estate, thereunder chronologically.
Series is a volume containing the so-called whole proceedings of the Suffolk County committee under the 1780 resolve, signed by its members -- The initial journal section records daily transactions and amounts involved, usually sale proceeds received from named purchasers for described property. The margin gives corresponding page numbers found in the subsequent ledger section. The ledger, covering the same period, lists debits and credits for each estate on facing pages. Entries are arranged by date for purchasers or creditors/claimants with amounts listed and marginal notations giving corresponding page number in the preceding journal. Separate sections provide information on estates leased, committee expenses, and an abstract of money distribution from estates sold to creditors, state treasury, and others. Additional county committee records are found in: Massachusetts archives collection, v. 154-155.
Per St 1778-79, c 49 (May 1, 1779), the Massachusetts General Court authorized the confiscation and sale of absentee estates for the benefit of the government. Resolves 1778-79, c 312 (Sept. 23, 1779) appointed various county committees to sell at public auction estates confiscated from prominent Loyalists named in the resolve. County committee actions, reflected in resolves passed Oct. 1779-May 1780, included sales, suspended sales, leases, and receipts deposited into the Treasury. Some records for these committees are found in: Massachusetts. Office of the Secretary of State. Massachusetts archives collection ((M-Ar)45X), v. 280.
Resolves 1780, Oct Sess, c 95 (Nov. 29, 1780) appointed committees for each county to take charge of absentee real estate and personal effects from the Committee of Sequestration and to sell the same at public auction. Resolves 1783, Jan 1784 Sess, c 132 (Mar. 16, 1784) suspended sales of absentee estates and directed the committees to settle their accounts by June 10. As the treaty ending the Revolutionary War prohibited further confiscations, St 1783 c 69 (Mar. 24, 1784) specified that any absentee property not already sold or claimed for debt should be returned to its original owner.
Title derived from ledger t.-p.
Cover title: Committee for Selling Absentees Estates in the County of Suffolk.
Index: Internal to ledger by first letter of surname.

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