Nuncupative Will of
Leonard Calvert, Governor of the
Province of Maryland
(Abstracted in the Maryland Calendar of Wills, Original Volume I)
Proofed and Annotated by
Rhoda Fone & Carole Hammett (2001)
Editors: Words enclosed in [brackets] or preceded by Editors are those of the editors and not part of the original record.
1647 Nuncupative Will of Leonard Calvert, Governor of the Province of Maryland.
Court and Testamentary Business, Province of Maryland, 1647. Liber A, folios 64-5
June 19th  This day came Margarett Brent Gent, & desyred
the testimony of the prnt Gouernor Mr Tho: Greene concerning
the last will & Testamt of the late Gouernor Leonard Calvert
Esqr And the sd Gouernor did authorize Giles Brent Esqr one
of his Lops Counsell to administer an oath unto him the sd
Gouernr concerning the foresd busines.
The sd Gouernor Tho: Greene Esqr answered uppon oath
concerning the last will & Testamt of Leo: Calvert Esqr aforesd
That he the sd Leo: Calvert, lying uppon his death bed, some
6 howres before his death, being in prfect memory, directing
his speech to Mrs Margarett Brent sayd in pnce of him the sd
Mr Greene & some others I make you my sole Exequutrix,
Take all, & pay all. After wch words hee the sd Leon: Calvert
desyred every one to depart the roome & was some space in
priuate conference wth Mrs Marg: Brent aforesd Afterwards the
Mr Greene comeing into the roome againe, he heard the sd
Mr L: Calvert appoint certaine Legacies in manner following.
Viz I doe giue my warring cloaths to James Linsay, & Richard
Willan my servants, specifying his cloath suite to Rich. Willan
& his black suite to James Linsey. & his waring Linnen to be
diuided betweene them. Aliso I giue a mare Colt to my God
sonne Leon: Greene. Allso hee did desyre tht his exequutrix
should giue the first mare Colt tht should fall this yeare, (& if
none fall in this yeare, then the first tht shall hereafter fall)
unto Mrs Temperance Pippett of Virginea. And further he
Recognit Teste me
Willm Bretton Clk.
June 19th 1647 Mrs Margarett Brent maketh claime of the
Estate of L: Calvert deceased, & desyred lres of Admistraon
should be granted unto her of all the Lands, goods & chattells
belonging unto him the sd Leon: Calvert according to his last
will & Testamt
Ordered the sd Mrs Marg: Brent should haue lres of admistraon granted unto her fortwth The will being proued by the testimonies aforesd
(Archives of Maryland, Vol. 4, 13-14)
Editors: Leonard Calvert, a Catholic, and son of Sir George Calvert, the first Lord Baltimore, and Anne Mynne (daughter of George), was born ca 1606, died St. Mary's Co, MD ca 1647; may have married Anne Brent; had one son, William Calvert, born ca 1642-3, died in 1682, having married ca 1661 Elizabeth, daughter of Gov. William Stone; and one daughter, Anne Calvert, born ca 1644, died ca 1714; married (1) Baker Brooke, born ca 1628, died 1678-9; (2) Henry Brent, died ca 1680; and (3) Richard Marsham, died 1713. In 1633 Leonard sailed on The Ark and The Dove to the newly-chartered Province of Maryland, having been appointed its first governor by his older brother, Cecil, the second Lord Baltimore. His absences from Maryland included two voyages to England, once in 1641-2, and once in 1643-44, and again in 1645-6 following Ingle's Raid.* While absent in Apr 1638, he appointed John Lewger in his stead; and from May to Aug 1638, Capt. Thomas Cornwalleys. From May to July 1641, he appointed Capt. Giles Brent to act for him, and again from 11 Apr 1643 to Sep 1644. William Brainthwayt acted in his stead during Sep and Oct 1644, and Capt. Edward Mill during the latter part of his final absence (between July and his return in late 1646).
* Early in 1645, during the Civil War in England, Protestant ship captain, Richard Ingle, raided the settlement on the St. Mary's river in the name of the English Parliament. He burned the Catholic chapel, plundered the homes of Catholic settlers and kidnapped Capt. Giles Brent, brother of Margaret, and a number of Jesuit priests, taking them back to England. Leonard Calvert fled to Virginia in February 1645, and did not return to Maryland until November or December 1646, when he and a small band of soldiers, most of them also former settlers, "re-took" the Province (with little or no resistance other than from Isle of Kent). Ingle had earlier been arrested for treason against Charles I by Capt. Brent, an act not approved by either Calvert, and one that may have incited Ingle to act.
Six months later Leonard was dead, having named Thomas Greene his successor as Governor, and given Mistress Margaret Brent, as his executrix, full control of his entire estate. It was not until 3 Jan 1648 that the Provincial Government finally awarded her attorney-in-fact for the Lord Proprietor (Leonard's brother, Cecil), following which, on 21 Jan 1648, she applied for two votes in the assembly, one for herself as a landowner and one as the Lord Proprietor's representative. She was turned down by the Assembly on both counts, and ultimately also rejected by the Lord Proprietor, whereupon all the Brents (also Catholics) removed to the Northern Neck of Virginia. The Maryland Assembly, despite their rejection of her right to vote, nevertheless remonstrated with Lord Baltimore over his "bitter invectives" against her and credited her with having been "better for the Collonys safety at that time in her hands then in any mans else."
Leonard Calvert (1606-1647), Biographical Series, Archives of Maryland, Maryland State Archives
Edward C. Papenfuse, et al., A Biographical Dictionary of the Maryland Legislature, 1635-1789, Vol. I, A-H, (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1979), p. 190.
Margaret Brent - a Brief History by Lois Green Carr, electronically published by the Maryland State Archives