My Winterberry Farm Primitives Shop Blog

Thursday, March 12, 2015

March 12, 2015 - New Ephemera Added to my Etsy Shop!

I have been working on my Etsy shop for the last few weeks and I have added a few new pieces to my inventory. I have always loved early ephemera and books because they give us a view into our past. Late last month, I found a 1795 deed from Lancaster County, PA on early paper not sheepskin or vellum. As I was looking it over before completing my purchase, I saw the signature of a Michael Hubley on the deed.
This indenture, or deed, was for the transfer of land from John and Margaret Cunningham to Jacob and Henry Brenneman and Michael Hubley was the Justice of the Peace that oversaw and signed the indenture in at least two places. He is an ancestor of the Hubley family that opened the Hubley Manufacturing Company in 1894. This is the company that is famous for their cast iron toys. The Brenneman name is a well-known Mennonite family in Lancaster County and both Jacob and Henry Brenneman served in the Revolutionary War.
Michael Hubley was, in 1777, appointed by the supreme executive council a justice of the peace of Lancaster Co., and for some time was the presiding justice of the several courts of the county. His appointment as a Justice of the Peace for Lancaster County was passed in Convention on September 3, 1776 and was signed into law by Benjamin Franklin (President of the Convention). He was re-commissioned a justice of the peace in 1784. For some time during the Revolution he held the position of barrack-master of Lancaster Co. and was listed as a 'soldier' in the military roles of Pennsylvania. He was an acting magistrate of the county for the period of twenty-seven years. During the last 43 years of his life he served the Trinity Lutheran congregation as warden, elder and trustee. He died May 17, 1804. Adam Hubley, a son, entered the Revolutionary army Oct. 27, 1775, as first lieutenant in the First Pennsylvania Battalion, Col. Philip De Haas. In 1776 he was promoted to the rank of major of another regiment, and on the 5th of June, 1779, he was commissioned lieutenant-colonel of the "New Eleventh" Pennsylvania Line, to rank from Feb. 3, 1779. He retired from the army Jan. 1, 1781. He served in the Pennsylvania Legislature from 1783 to 1787, and was chosen a member of the Senate in 1790. In 1793 he was appointed auctioneer at Philadelphia, and died of yellow fever the same year. John Hubley, another son, was born at Lancaster on the 25th of December, 1747. He read law with Edward Shippen, and was admitted to the bar in 1769. He was a member of the convention of July 15, 1776, which framed the first Constitution of the State, and served during the same year upon the General Committee of Safety; was appointed commissary of Continental stores Jan. 11, 1777; and on the 5th of April following, prothonotary of the Court of Common Pleas, clerk of Orphans' Court, clerk of Quarter Sessions, and also recorder of deeds, part of which offices he held for upwards of twenty years. In 1787 he was a member of the State convention that ratified the Federal Constitution. He died at Lancaster, Jan. 21, 1821. The descendants of the family were prominent in later years, and are still residents of Lancaster.
This deed is fragile and rare with all of its seals intact and signatures of several prominent men of Lancaster County. One little interesting pieces of trivia is the 'mark' of Margaret Cunningham that can be seen in picture #3. She could not read or write and could only make that little round mark. It is two sided and measures 16" x 20" when fully opened.
This is a very interesting piece of history and to find a piece of ephemera that is 220 years old is amazing in itself but to find one that has the added historical significance of the Hubley family is amazing. It is now for sale in my Etsy shop at