Notes for John BELT

Will dated 13 May 1697. Will proved 11 Nov 1698 (Annapolis, Liber 6, folio 175). Also Baldwin's Wills II, 160, MD He named his wife Elizabeth and sons John, Joseph, and Benjamin; daughters Elizabeth, Charity, and Sarah. There was a son, Jeremiah, born after the will was made . He also mentioned a nephew Thomas Ramsey.

John's wife, Elizabeth maiden name is often shown as [TYDINGS]*, although possible there are other possiblities to. Rick Sanders site at explains this in detail.
*(For source marriage proof of John Belt to Elizabeth Tydings see Compendium of American Genealogy by Fred Virkus, Vol 4 page 645).

On 29 Apr 1685 Thomas Lightfoot deeded to John Belt a tract of 300 acres in Baltimore County Maryland called "Belt's Posterity" (Liber R M No HS folio 123).The land was subsequently willed by John to his sons Joseph and Benjamin. The will, dated 13 May 1697, was proved 1698 (Annapolis Liber 6 folio 175).
Son Jeremiah was not mentioned in the will and thus born after the will was made.

The register of All Hallows Parish, Anne Arundel County, Maryland records that children of John: Elizabeth, Charity, Sarah and Jeremy were baptised 14 Dec 1703. The same register records the marriage 25 Jul 1701 of Mr John Lamb, merchant, and Elizabeth Belt, widow of John Belt , "Late of this Parish deceased"

Much will duplicate above material but is worthy of full copy as Mr Newman was the eminent family historian of the time!

"JOHN BELT (son of HUMPHREY BELT) born Norfolk Co. VA. about 1645; died (testate) Anne Arundel Co. MD, 1698; married ELIZABETH dau. of RICHARD TYDINGS, of Anne Arundel Co. (As the widow Belt, she became the wife of John Lamb, a merchant of Annapolis.) Their children were -

1. John, m. Lucy Lawrence.
2. JOSEPH, more later.
3. Benjamin, m. Elizabeth Middleton?
4. Elizabeth, m. [Nicholas Watkins.] "Error in report"
5. Charity, m. James Mullikin.
6. Sarah, m. Thomas Sr Harwood.
7. Jeremiah (posthumous) m. Mary Wight.

"JOHN BELT, son and heir of HUMPHREY BELT and his wife, was born in Lower Norfolk County, Virginia, and was brought to the Province of Maryland by his father at a date prior to June 30, 1663. He was early engaged as a cooper, but was later styled as a planter."

"On June 14, 1675, JOHN BELT, of Anne Arundel County, Cooper, purchased from Michael Offley 101 acres of land, being a part of a tract of land containing (number is smeared) acres, known as "Friend's Choice", situated on the ridge of the Patuxent River."

"On April 20, 1679, John Belt at the home of George Yate in Anne Arundel County swore that Richard Mascall at the time of his departure from the Province in the year 1673 was in Possessi on of 230 acres of land then lying in Baltimore County, but now in Anne Arundel County known by the name of "Mascall's Rest". At this instance, JOHN BELT signed his name. (Ref. 1)."

"On April 29, 1685, JOHN BELT, "Planter", purchased from Thomas Lightfoot and Rebecca his wife, of Baltimore County, 300 acres of land being a portion of two tracts of land called "Exception" at the head of the Gunpowder River which the said Belt had resurveyed into "Belt's Prosperity". (Ref. 2)."

"On February 2, 1687, JOHN BELT was named as one of the overseers of the estate of Richard Tydings of Anne Arundel County, Maryland. At this time Richard Tydings devised to his daughters , Elizabeth and Charity, equally 300 acres of unnamed land in Baltimore County. (Ref.3). It is generally stated that he married Elizabeth, the daughter of Richard Tydings. While no absolute truth has been found so far as this research has been carried out, there are definite circumstantial evidences".

"JOHN BELT died in Anne Arundel County in 1698. His last will and testament, dated May 13, 1697, was proved in Anne Arundel County on November 17, 1698, by John Tydings, Charity Jordan , Ann Smith, Thomas Hodges, Daniel Pierce, Darby Sweaney, and Ann Pierce. (Ref.4)."

"He styled himself JOHN BELT SR and devised his eldest son, JOHN, and his heirs VELMEAD, presumably 200 acres. To his wife, Elizabeth, in lieu of dower rights, he devised the dwelling-plantation and 100 acres of land during life .To his second son JOSEPH, and his heirs he willed the dwelling -plantation at the death of his mother, and a 100 acre portion of "Belt's Prosperity", lying at the head of Gunpowder River. Benjamin, the third son, was devised all the residue of "Belt's Posterity" or 200 acres."

"This compiler (Newman) can only assume that "Belt's Prosperity" and "Belt's Posterity" were the same property. In those days, when many could not read or write, the clerks spelled b y ear and names of persons and places were sometimes spelled several different ways in the same document."

"Personalty was bequeathed to his nephew, Thomas Ramsey. To his eldest daughter, Elizabeth, his second daughter, Charity, and his youngest daughter, Sarah, he bequeathed personalty at the age of 16 years or marriage. In the event of death of either daughter, her estate was to pass to her sisters, likewise, in the event of the death of a son, his estate was to pass to the eldest daughter, that is, if the son died under age and without issue".

"He appointed his wife, ELIZABETH BELT, the executrix and willed her the residuary estate".

"The inventory, appraised at 525/17/9 Lbs., including six slaves, was filed in the Prerogative Court of Anne Arundel County on June 4, 1700. The appraisers were Thomas Stockett and Daniel Mariarite (Ref. 5)."

The following is from MARYLAND HERITAGE, A Family History, by Katharine Beall Adams:

"That John and Elizabeth Belt were devout Quakers in the South River community is amply proved by the use of their home for Friends' meetings. It seems likely that his religious belief prevented John Belt from taking active part in the civil or military affairs of the county for there is no record that he held any public office".


1. Archives of Maryland, vol. 51, pages 264-265.
2. Baltimore County Deeds, Hall of Records, Annapolis, MD
3. Wills, Liber 6, folio 40, Hall of Records, Annapolis, MD
4. Wills, Liber 6, folio 175, Hall of Records, Annapolis, MD
5. Inventories and Accounts, Liber 20, folio 162, Hall of Records, Annapolis, MD


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