Richard Fowler Life Sketch

(1709 - 1757)

Richard Fowler was born on October 6, 1709, in Prince George’s County, British Colonial Maryland. Richard married Elizabeth Ward about 1743 in Anne Arundel County, British Colonial Maryland. Richard Fowler died before August 1757 in Anne Arundel County, British Colonial Maryland.


Richard Fowler, 9th child and 6th son of Thomas Fowler and Susannah Iiams was born on October 6, 1709, in Prince George’s County, British Colonial Maryland. Richard spent his early childhood on his father’s 400 acre plantation, “Ridgley’s and Tyler’s Chance”. Richard was about 5 years of age when his father died intestate. Without an inheritance and like his brothers, Richard was likely bound in servitude to learn a trade.

No information about Richard has been located until about 1742, when Richard’s brother John Fowler witnessed the will of Stephen Stewart, John’s neighbor and a large landowner. Stephen left a widow and 4 children under the age of 12. John likely played match-maker because the following year Richard married Stephen’s widow Elizabeth Ward and his fortunes changed. When Richard and Elizabeth administered the estate of Stephen Stewart, Benjamin Fowler, Richard’s brother and Samuel Howard, Richard’s nephew through his sister Elizabeth, were their sureties.

Stephen Stewart’s widow Elizabeth was entitled to a widow’s dower, ⅓ of her husband’s estate during her natural life. Stephen owned two large plantations between the forks of the Patuxent River, “Rutland’s Purchase” and a 200 acre part of “Duvall’s Range”. “Rutland’s Purchase” was devised to Stephen’s oldest son by his first wife. “Duvall’s Range” was devised to Edward, Stephen’s son by Elizabeth. Richard and Elizabeth likely made their home at “Duvall’s Range” where they raised Elizabeth’s two children, Edward and daughter Avis. Stephen’s two children by his first wife chose a maternal uncle as their guardian.

On February 9, 1744, Richard and his siblings each received 3 pounds 2 shillings 10 ¾ pence from the final distribution of his father’s estate. Likely the distribution was made after the death of their mother Susannah.

With his elevation in status, Richard became Overseer in 1744 for the South River Hundred. He also served as the South River Constable from 1750 to 1752.

In 1751, Richard, along with his older brother John, provided security for Thomas Mortimer, stepson of their brother Benjamin.

In 1755, Elizabeth’s son Edward chose a guardian suggesting that his mother was deceased. If this is the case, Richard likely moved to his brother John’s plantation nearby.

By August of 1757, Richard was deceased at the age of 47. His estate was inventoried by his nephew Thomas Fowler, son of John. There are no records that Richard had any children.

Genealogical Research and Life Sketch completed: December 2020


Sources:

"Maryland Births and Christenings, 1650-1995", database, FamilySearch, Richard Fowler, 1709.

Maryland State Archives. Probate Records. Wills. Liber 23 Folio 246.

Maryland State Archives. Probate Records. Inventory. Liber 28 Folio 80.

Maryland State Archives. Probate Records. Accounts. Liber 20 Folio 251.

Maryland State Archives. Anne Arundel Provincial Court Judgment Record. Nov 1744, pg 121.

Maryland State Archives. Anne Arundel Provincial Court Judgment Record. Nov 1750, pg 630.

Maryland State Archives. Anne Arundel Provincial Court Judgment Record. Mar 1751, pg 166.

Maryland State Archives. Anne Arundel Provincial Court Judgment Record. Jun 1751, pg 6.

Maryland State Archives. Anne Arundel Provincial Court Judgment Record. Mar 1752, pg 229.

Maryland State Archives. Anne Arundel Provincial Court Judgment Record. Aug 1757, pg 130 & 152.

Maryland State Archives. Probate Records. Testamentary Proceedings, Liber 31 Folio 446.

Richard Fowler genealogy research