Map of the "Maryland Hundreds" in Harford County
"So why isn't Edward Coyan in the 1776 Maryland census?" -
For those who aren't sure what a "Hundred" is, it was defined in early colonial times as "a political subdivision; Harford County was comprised of thirteen "hundreds" in 1776 and twelve "hundreds" in 1783. A "hundred" is so named because it was supposed to be an area capable of raising 100 men for military duty". [Reference: Our Harford Heritage, by C. Milton Wright]
Lately I have become intrigued at trying to "pinpoint" where our Edward and Sarah Coyan may have been residing in the timeframe shortly after (and probably even during) the Revolutionary War. When I found the 1783 tax assessment lists for Maryland and discovered that Edward was in the "Eden and Bush River Upper Hundred", I started trying to locate a map that would show where those "Hundreds" were actually located in Harford county.
As you can see below, the Eden Hundred was in the northwestern part of the county. Southeastern York county, Pennsylvania (a "hotbed" for Scotch-Irish settlers in the mid 1700's) bordered the Harford county Eden "Hundred" to the north and Baltimore county adjoined the Eden and Bush River (Creek) "Hundred's" to the west.
Besides this map being helpful for general information, I have looked closely at the 1790 census record for Edward Cowan. As it turns out, at least two men who were "next door" neighbors to Edward in that 1790 census (John Stewart and William Amos) are also present in the Eden and Bush River Upper Hundred's in the 1783 Tax Assessment! So, I think it's reasonable to assume that Edward and Sarah were still residing in the same general area in 1790 as well. This "probability" has extreme genealogical significance to us. Here's why:
Make note of the locations of the Little Gunpowder Falls and the town of Jarrettsville in the Bush River Upper Hundred. My research has uncovered the fact that the Saint James Protestant Episcopal Parish, was built near the mouth of the Little Gunpowder Falls in Monkton, Maryland. Monkton is located about 7 miles due west of Jarrettsville and just across the Harford county border into Baltimore county - strikingly close to where Edward Coyan and family are now documented to be residing in 1783 and 1790!! It just so happens that there was a birth recorded at this parish for one Hugh "COWIN", born September 12, 1789 to one "Edward and Sarah COWIN"! I have devoted a separate page to discussion of the St. James Episcopal Parish, and why it no longer "bothers" me that a Scotch-Irishman of Presbyterian heritage would have attended an Anglican church with strong ties to the Church of England (geographical location is the "key").
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