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Tuesday, March 29, 2016

New Jersey State Archives Increment 16: New Jersey Superior Court Case #31593 (1754-1755): Rogers, Samuel v. Bunnell, Samuel


Here is a short one, a writ from 12 November 1754 for a debt case against Samuel Bunnill.  At first look, I thought this one had little value.  On closer inspection, however, I see that the Sheriff's note states that the defendant is a Constable in Windsor Township.  The text following this statement is illegible on this copy, so getting an improved copy from the original document will be an essential task during the next visit to the archives.

Based on this clue, I make the assumption that the individual that was appointed constable in 1762 was the same as the defendant in this case (either the senior or junior Samuel Bonnell).  This appointment explains why Samuel was acting as an agent of the court four months later (March 1755) in the letter to William Walker from Cupid Field (increment 15).  The fact that this Samuel was a Township official for a prolonged period (eight years, at least, if the service was continuous) gives hope that a search through the Middlesex County and Windsor Township records will bear fruit.

John Bunnell

George Farris adds:

Samuel Rogers, Sr. was a shopkeeper in Upper Freehold and Allentown, adjacent to East Windsor and in the same area as the Robbins family. His son Samuel, Jr. inherited much of the property and was in the mercantile business in Allentown. The plaintiff in this suit was probably Samuel Rogers, Sr. - who died in 1756. There are many such suits by Samuel Rogers (both Sr. & Jr.) showing up in the index of Superior Court cases. Interestingly, an earlier one was a debt suit against John Deare who was the Middlesex Co. Sheriff who signed this document in the debt suit against Samuel Bunnill.  

John Bunnell responds:

Interesting.  We’ve seen several of these debt connections.  The Loudoun County debt case of William Carr Lane against Jacob Wright was followed immediately by a case by someone else against William Carr Lane.  I guess many were running on a shoestring, so debt was probably not particularly uncommon.


Transcription of New Jersey Superior Court Case #31593 (1754-1755): Rogers, Samuel v. Bunnell, Samuel 
Sup. Court
Samuel Rogers } _____ 
v } _____
Samuel Bunnell }

Cept Corpus
In Custodia Mill’r 6/4
John Deard Sherriff

Def’t a Constable in Windsor 
Township  _______________________

New Jersey fs.  George the second by the grace of God of great Britain and France and Ireland King Defender of the Faith &c  To Our Sheriffe of Our County of Middlesex Greeting we Command You That You Take Samuel Bunnill / late of the County Aforesaid / if the May be found within Your Bailywick and him Safely Keep so that you may have his Body before us at Our City of Perth Amboy On The Third Tuesday in March Next To Answer Samuel Rogers Of Aplea of Trespass and also to the bill of him the Said Samuel Rogers Against him the said Samuel Bunnill for Fifty Pounds Proclamation money Upon his Promise and Assumption According to the Customs of Our Court before and then and there to be Exhibited An have you Then and there this Writt  Witness Robert Hunter Morris Esq’r Chief Justice at our City of Burlington the Twelfth day of November In the Twenty Eighth Year of our Reign

W. Pidgeon Att’y Read

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