These pages from the William and Mary Quarterly, discuss the arrest and imprisonment of Charles Maderas (3), friends and neighbors for Preaching the Protestant Religion in the home of James McHan.
(Note that James McHan is the executor of Charles' Will.)
Mispelling as they appear on the original documents.
Information provided by John Pearson (credits 17)
William and Mary Quarterly Pg.208
BAPTISTS IN MI DDLESEX, 1771.
In Middlesex County Court, June 24th, 1771. On the petition of Robert Ware and others professing themselves protestant dissenters to establish a place of public worship, for them in this county, the court being of opinion, they have no authority to appoint such place, the petition is rejected. Petition above referred to. To the worshipfull the court of Middlesex County. We the petitioners humbly beseech Your worships to grant and establish a place for the publick worship of the disenters at James Mackan acordine to law for the peacable communion of the Christian worship, and your Petitioners ever prayeth. Endorsed. The petition of Robt. Ware and others for to establish a place of publick worship, 1771, June. Rejected. Robert Ware James Mackan John Owen George Warwick Edward Ware Charles Mederis John Warwick John Greenwood John Meacham Jer. Shepard Henry Shepard Wm. Mullins
Middlesx, ss: James Montague one of his Majesty's Justices of the Peace of the said County, To the Sheriff or Keeper of the Goal of the County aforesaid.
William and Mary Quarterly Pg.209
I send you herewith the Bodys of John Waller, Robert Ware, James Greenwood and William Webber taken this day and brought before me, who stand charged with unlawfully assembling themselves at the house of James McKan in this County and taking upon themselves to Teach or Preach the Gosple under the pretense of the exercise of Religeon in other manner than according to the Liturgy of the Church of England, they not having Episcopal Ordination to Teach or Preach the same according to the Canons of the said Church of England, and not having, they professing themselves to be Protestant Teachers or Preachers dissenting from the said Church of England, Justified themselves as Such according to the directions of an Act of the Parliament of England made in the first year of King William and Queen Mary Intitled an Act for exempting Their Majesty's Subjects dissenting from the said Church of England, from the Penalties of certain Laws, and for labouring to persuade many Persons in Communion of the Church of England to dissent from the same and for raising factions in the minds of his Majesty's Subjects contrary to the Laws of this Colony and against the Peace of our Lord The King, his Crown and Dignity; They the said John Waller, Robert Ware, James Greenwood and William Webber, upon their trial and examinations by me had and taken declare they have no Power or authority for which they stand charged, but from above, Therefore, I hereby require you to receive them into your custody and Them safely keep in the Goal of the said County until they shall be discharged by due course of Law. Given under my hand and seal this 10th day of August, 1771. James Montague. Seal.
Middlesex County, towit: Philip Montague, one of his Majesty's Justices of the Peace of the Said County. To The Sheriff or any Constable of the County aforesd. Whereas it hath appeared to me by information of William
pg. 210 William and Mary Quarterly
Montague That John Waller', Robert Ware, James Greenwood, William Webber, Richard Faulkner and Thomas Wafer, are this day present at the house of James McKan in this County at a conventicle or unlawful assembly of many Persons exceeding the number of Few, besides the household of the said James McKan, there met together under the pretence of the exercise of Religeon in other manner than according to the Liturgy and Practice of the Church of England. And they, the said John Waller, Robert Ware, James Greenwood, William Webber, Richard Faulkner and Thomas Wafer have at other times and Places taken upon themselves to Preach or Teach to the Persons, so unlawfully assemblyd, not having Episcopal Ordination to Teach or Preach the Gospel according to the Canons of the Church of England, neither have they, professing themselves to be Protestant Teachers or Preachers dissenting from the said Church of England, qualified themselves to Teach or Preach as such according to the directions of an Act of Parliament of England made in the first year of King William and Queen Mary intitled an act for exempting their Majesty's Protestant Subjects dessenting from the sd. Church of England from the Penalties of certain Laws, nor is the house of the said James McKan a Place the meeting or Congregation of Protestant Dissenters for Religious Worship according to the directions of the said act of Parliament, and they the said John Waller, Robert Ware, James Greenwood, William Webber, Richard Faulkner and Thomas Wafer do labour and persuade many Persons in Communion with the Church of England, to dissent from the same and utter doctrines Distructive of the Peace of Society to the Subversion of all Religeous establishment the exciting and raising Factions in the minds of his Majesty's Subjects contrary to the laws of this Colony and against the Peace of our Lord The King, his Crown and Dignity.
(I) See John Wailer's letter written in Urbanna prison. Middleacx. August 12, 1771, describing this incident. Wafer, or Wafford, after a severe scourging was dismissed, and also Richard Falkner. The others were put in prison, where they remained fortysix days. Taylor, J. B. Lives of Virginia Baptist Ministers. 2d ed.. pp. 79. BO.
William and Mary Quarterly pg. 211
You are hereby, therefore, required to take the said John Waller, Robert Ware, James Greenwood, William Webber, Richard Faulkner and Thomas Wafer and Carry them before sum Justice of this County to answer the Premisus that they may be dealt with according to Law. Given under my hand and seal this 10th day of August, 1771. Phil Montague Seal
In Middlesex County Court, Monday, August 26th, 1771. John Waller, Robert Ware, James Greenwood and William Weber, who were committed to the Goal of this County by virtue of a Warrant and mittimus from Jas. Montague Gent; one of his Majesty's Justices of the Peace for the said County for Teaching and Preaching the Gospel, under the Pretence of the exercise of Religeon, in other manner than according to the Liturgy of the Church of England and without having Episcopal ordination to Teach or Preach the same according to the Canons of the said Church of England, were brought into Court and confessed the Fact, but justified their conduct as being Protestant Dissenters; where upon the court having fully heard them in their own Defence, and mature Deliberation being there upon had, and it appearing that they had not qualified themselves as Teachers or Preachers either according to the laws of this Colony or of Great Britain or the Canons of the Church of England It is ordered they and each of them be remanded to the Goal of this County, There to remain until they shall severally enter into a recognizance with two securities each, themselves in the sum of 50 pounds each and their securities in the sum of 25 pounds each, Upon condition that they shail severally and respectively be of good Behavior for the space of six months next ensuing.
September the 13th, 1771. To the worshipfull Court of Middlesx County. The petition of us inhabitants of this county and others Humbly sheweth
pg. 212 William and Mary Quarterly
That whereas Your worships made an order last court for the Baptist Preachers now in our prison bounds to enter into recognizance not to preach or teach in the county for six months under certain penalties and they being Conscientious and fearing God could not consent to the said conditions and now are bereft of the opportunity of soliciting the depending General court for license if Your worships should think it duty for them so to do before our Legislators shall redress the Grievances of discentors by making a law for them to be guided by; we therefore pray your worships would reconsider their case, supercede the aforesaid order, and release them from their imprisonment to return home to their distressed familys and your petitioners as in duty bound shall pray. ______Shepard James Mackan sen. John Sadler Mathew Mackan Richard Street Charles Mederis Abraham Montague John Abbott Henry Street Wm. Mullens James Mackan James Lee Williamson Bryent Edward Ware John Bryent Ralph Watts John Warwick Jer. Shepard George Warwick Philip Vass Edward Ware sen. Henry Shepard John Owen John Greenwood James Ware Lut. (?) Montague Thomas Mackan Wm. Owen
Endorsed. Petition--Geo. Warwick and others, Annabaptists.
Urba Prison Sept 20, 1771. Dear Sir: Hoping that of your great clemency, you will when truly
William and Mary Quarterly pg. 213
informed commisserate the case, of one of my poor Bro. prisoners; has caused me, to use this freedom of writing you. My bro. Webber now in prison, is in a very low state of health, and without the divine interposition, must I think, in a few days, launch off the shores of mortality, he is a young man, who when at home, lives with his mother in Goochland, upwards of 100 miles from this I judge: and the reason of his coming down, into this county to preach, was this, The ministers that came with me before, are and has been, for sometime, in Caroline prison, for the very same thing, that I am here: and just before I left home I was vety sick, and pressed on this young man to come with me, to assist me in preaching at my meetings, thro Careline, K and Queen and into this county: He had just begun to preach, as the Gent. came, who took us up, and he had not finished his discourse, when he was pulled off the stage. He is, as well as myself, afraid to sign any bond, not to preach, for fear of sinning against God; but it is more than probable, if he had now his liberty, that he would never be under obligations of coming into this county again, for he has not the care of a church here, as I have, therefore. I humbly hope, as you are a Gent. in great power and much esteem in your county, you will please to procure him, his liberty to return home, to his friends to nurse him. I am yr friend John Waller, jr. To Mr. James Mills, Urbanna.