If the genealogist would identify the perfect county history–one containing equal parts of history and biography, and enough genealogy to make the blood race–Williams’ History of Frederick County, Maryland would surely be his/her choice. The history of Braddock’s campaign, the local events of the Revolution, John Brown’s raid nearby, the old National Road, the earliest American railroad and its opening to Frederick, and the great events of the Civil War are all covered in the first volume of this monumental work. Of particular interest to the genealogist are the 1790 census of Frederick County and the roster of Maryland Troops in the French and Indian War.
The second volume, the “Biographical Record of Representative Families,” is really worth pausing over, for it contains no fewer than 1,100 biographical and genealogical sketches, in most cases supplied by the subjects of the sketches themselves. Each sketch attempts to establish the origins of the subjects’ forebears, giving the dates and places of their birth, marriage, and residence, and facts concerning their immigration to and settlement in this country (most were of German or Scotch-Irish extraction). The authors then describe the subjects’ family members, place of residence, education, religion, occupation, and life and times in Frederick County, which in earlier years comprised the entire area of Western Maryland. And what we are left with finally is not only an understanding of the rise and progress of a great county and its people, but also a clear perception of the county in the great genealogical chain.
And now this monumental work is far easier to consult than ever before, thanks to Clearfield’s publication of the Every-Name Index for the Two Volumes of History of Frederick County, Maryland . . ., prepared by Patricia A. Fogle. Get your copies of the two-volume History and the companion Index today!