Bullitt County History

Peter Shepherd Heirs to John and Upton Beckwith

This deed between the heirs of Peter Shepherd and the brothers John Williams Beckwith and Upton Beckwith had to travel a long way before it was finally official. It involved a piece of land lying along the Salt River just east of the Shepherdsville town boundary that was part of Peter Shepherd's original 900 acre survey. Adam Shepherd and his wife Rachael were present and negotiated the sale, but since it was his father's land, Adam had to obtain the written approval of each of the other Peter Shepherd heirs.

The deed had to be carried to Baltimore, Maryland where Adam's three remaining siblings lived. They included Margaret, who had married John Agnew Hamilton, Elizabeth, who had married a Guthrie, and Susannah who had never married. While we have evidence of five other siblings, it seems that by this time they were all deceased.

As you will note, the deed leaves out the day, month and year in its first sentence. This was necessary because Adam had no way of knowing when it would reach his sisters in Baltimore. Of course, that also prevents us from knowing when the Beckwiths first approached him about selling the land. We do learn however that it was signed in Baltimore by the sisters on 7 Apr 1810, from the endorsement by that city's mayor.

However, it would be another five months before it returned to Bullitt County where Adam Shepherd officially presented it to the County Court, and then was finally entered into Deed Book B (pages 401-2) on 3 Dec 1810.

The location of this tract of land appears to have adjoined the two town lots already owned by the brothers, and likely was purchased to facilitate their business with access to the river.

Below is the deed transcription, and also an image of the deed pages themselves.


This indenture made this ___ day of ___ one thousand eight hundred and ___ between Margaret Hamilton, Elizabeth Guthry, Susannah Shepherd of the county of Baltimore and Commonwealth of Maryland and Adam Shepherd and Rachael his wife of the county of Bullitt, Commonwealth of Kentucky, heirs of Peter Shepherd, dec'd, of the one part, and John Williams Beckwith and Upton Beckwith of the county of Bullitt and Commonwealth of Kentucky aforesaid of the other part. Witnesseth that the said Margaret, Elizabeth, Susannah, Adam, and Rachael for and in consideration of one hundred and eighty-seven dollars and fifty cents current money of the United States, to them in hand paid, the receipt whereof is hereby acknowledged, have granted, bargained and sold, and by these presents do grant, bargain and sell unto the said John W. and Upton Beckwith, their heirs and assigns forever, a certain tract or parcel of land, situate lying and being in the County of Bullitt aforesaid on Salt River and bounded as follows, towit. Beginning at a large beech tree on the bank of said river, one of the corners of the town of Shepherdsville, thence North six degrees East seventeen and a half poles to a stake, thence South eighty-four degrees East eighty (or eight?) poles to a stake, thence South six degrees West thirty-three poles to Salt River, thence with the meanders of it to a point opposite the beginning, then to the beginning, containing eighteen acres, three roods, twenty and a half poles more or less with its appurtenances. Provided that James A. Sturgus and Wm Pope Jr. are to have the privilege of conveying salt water thro the said land according to an agreement heretofore made with them by said Adam Shepherd. To have and to hold the said tract or parcel of land, with all the appurtenances uto the said John and Upton, their heirs and assigns to their only proper use, benefit and behoof forever, and the said Margaret, Elizabeth, Susannah and Adam and Rachel do covenant and agree with the said John and Upton and their heirs and assigns that the premises hereby bargained and sold now are and forever hereafter shall be and remain free and clear of and from all right and title of dower or other incumbrance whatever, and that they the said Margaret, Elizabeth, Susannah and Adam and Rachael will and their heirs, executers and administrators shall warrant and forever defend the said tract or parcel of land with all the appurtenances unto the said John and Upton, their heirs and assigns against all and every person or persons whatever lawfully claiming or claim the same. In testimony whereof the said Margaret, Elizabeth, Susannah, and Adam and Rachael hereunto set their hands and seals on the day and year first above written. Signed, sealed and delivered in the presence of John Sague.
(signed) Margaret Hamilton, Elizabeth Guthrie, Susannah Shepherd, Adam Shepherd

Baltimore County
State of Maryland Sct.
Be it remembered that on the 7th day of April eighteen hundred and ten before me Edward Johnson, mayor of the city of Baltimore personally appeared Margaret Hamilton, Elizabeth Guthrie and Susannah Sheppard, parties to the within instrument of writing, and acknowledged the same to be their act and deed for the purposes therein mentioned. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and caused the corporate seal of the City of Baltimore to be hereunto affixed the day and year above written.
(signed) Edward Johnson, Mayor of the City of Baltimore

State of Kentucky
Bullitt County Sct
I Frederic William Spence Grayson, clerk of the County Court of the county aforesaid, do hereby certify that the forgoing deed was on the 28th day of September in the year 1810 acknowledged by Adam Shepherd, one of a party to the same to be his voluntary act and deed. Whereupon I have truly recorded the said indenture or deed and the certification thereon endorsed together with this certificate in my office on the 3rd day of December on the year aforesaid as the law requires.
(signed) Frederic W. S. Grayson



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The Bullitt County History Museum, a service of the Bullitt County Genealogical Society, is located in the county courthouse at 300 South Buckman Street (Highway 61) in Shepherdsville, Kentucky. The museum, along with its research room, is open 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday; and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday. Admission is free. The museum, as part of the Bullitt County Genealogical Society, is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization and is classified as a 509(a)2 public charity. Contributions and bequests are deductible under section 2055, 2106, or 2522 of the Internal Revenue Code. Page last modified: 20 Aug 2015 . Page URL: bullittcountyhistory.org/bchistory/shepherdheirs_beckwiths.html