Admr. of Hiram Jordan vs. Margaret Swann, etc: Chancery Cause, Frederick County (Part 1 of 4)
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To the Judge of the Circuit Court of Frederick county. Humbly complaining your orator Oliver M Brown in his own right and as administrator of Hiram O. Jordan decd. (who was a free man of color) shews to the court That on the 27th December 1849 the said Hiram O. Jordan purchased of Margaret Swann a slave named Maria the wife of said Hiram O. Jordan for the sum of $400 and executed his obligations for the amount payable in four equal annual instalments with interest from 27th Decr. 1849 payable annually, in which obligations your orator became surety at the instance of said Hiram O. Jordan and his father Sylvester Jordan the said Hiram O. and Sylvester agreeing with your orator that if he would become the surety, that said Sylvester Jordan would execute a deed of trust conveying a house and lot in Winchester to indemnify your orator. The obligations were executed to Margaret Swann accordingly, and the said Sylvester Jordan executed a deed of trust to Barton and Williams trustees conveying the said house and lot to indemnify your orator as surety in the said obligations, as will more fully appear by the deed of trust filed with this bill as part thereof marked "Exhibit No. 1" The said Hiram O. Jordan paid in part of the interest due on said obligations $72. On the 7th Feby 1854, James P Riely paid for said Margaret Swann $350. and she transferred to him so much of the said obligation, which $350 with the interest due thereon is still unpaid. The balance of said obligations amounting to $85.26 your orator paid to Philip Williams for said Margt. Swann on the 27th of November 1856 as appears by a paper filed herewith marked "Exhibit No. 2" The said Hiram O, Jordan died on the [blank] day of October 1856, and your orator seeing no hope of having the money paid otherwise, directed the trustees Barton and Williams to advertise and sell the said house and lot to raise money to pay the balance due on said obligations. Your orator was surprised on the day of sale by a notice given by some person acting in behalf of one or more of the children of said Sylvester Jordan & his wife Catharine (now decd) alledging that said Sylvester Jordan was not a free man, that he was in fact the slave of his wife the said Catharine, and that therefore the deed of trust was null and void. Your orator does not know how this fact may be and cannot admit it, but as it would throw a cloud