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Hooper Ennals of Dorchester Maryland

Updated January 9, 2005

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Ennalls Census


Prior to 1820 the white Ennals where among the wealthiest and most prominent family in Dorchester County. They practically owned the county and dominated local and state politics for over a hundred years. Essentially, the last of the white Ennalls line that began with Bartholomew Ennalls (who had come to Dorchester County Maryland in1669 from Suffolk County England by way of the Netherlands) began to disappear during the period from 1810 to 1820.

The white Ennalls clans had apparently died out (probably due to having no male heirs to carry on the family name. Their daughters changed their last name when they got married. There is evidence of the white Ennalls daughters attempting to preserve the family name by giving their sons the Ennalls surname for their middle name. For instance, we find the name Joseph Ennalls Muse given to the son of one of the Ennalls girls. Another named her son Thomas Ennalls Waggan. The effort failed, however, and the evidence suggests that the white Ennalls line eventually come to an end by the end of the century.

The black Ennalls who had been freed by Henry Ennals in 1790 don't start showing up until the 1830 census). This is probably due to the manumission practice of not actually obtaining one's freedom until years after this document was signed. The manumission papers of Henry Ennalls, for example, in some cases keep the blacks he supposedly freed in bondage for up to 20 more years after the date the document was signed. This perhaps explains why the free blacks Ennalls don't begin showing up until 1830 and why the census after 1790 show that there were a number of free blacks (no names are provided) living on the plantation of white Ennalls

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