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The Maryland line.

By Rev. Horace Edwin Hayden.
In your editorial of February, 1881, you note the fact that “a full history of the Maryland troops in the Confederate service is now being prepared.” Having a very great interest in this history, and yet being unable to learn anything about it, I beg to present the following facts for the benefit of the author. On page 251, vol. V, Southern Historical Society Papers, I mentioned that an effort was made to organize the “Maryland line” in the Confederate service in June, 1861, at Leesburg. This was some days previous to the complete organization of the First Maryland regiment, which occurred June 25th, 1861. I cannot find in Goldsborough's history of the “Maryland line” any definite action of that body in assuming that distinguished name, and judge that it was applied to the Maryland command under General Bradley T. Johnson, by courtesy. The following paper has never to my knowledge been published since it was issued in the printed circular from which I copy it:

Leesburg, June 6th, 1861.
At a meeting of citizens of Maryland, representing five counties and Baltimore city, held at the town of Leesburg, Loudoun county, [255] Virginia, on Thursday, the 6th day of June, 1861, the following constitution was unanimously adopted, and five hundred copies ordered to be printed for distribution among the people of Maryland.

By order,

Frank A. Bond, Secretary.


article I: This Association shall be styled The Independent Maryland Line of 1861.

art. II. The active members of this Association shall be such only as are physically able to bear arms, but honorary members may be admitted in the discretion of the Executive Council.

art. III. The object of this Association shall be to protect the people of Maryland and their property against unlawful invasion, violence, seizure or oppression, and secure to the civil authorities and voters of Maryland that freedom of action which was intended to be guaranteed by our republican institutions.

art. IV. The officers of this Association shall consist of a President, a Vice-President, a Treasurer, a Secretary, and an Executive Council.

art. V. The President shall preside at all meetings of the Association and shall be ex-officio, a member of the Executive Council; and in case of his absence the duties of his office shall be discharged by the Vice-President.

art. VI. The Treasurer shall receive and disburse all monies of the Association under such rules and regulations as may be prescribed by the Executive Council.

art. VII. The Secretary shall keep a record of the proceedings of the Association under such rules as the Executive Council may from time to time prescribe.

art. VIII. The Executive Council shall consist of six members (besides the President), to be elected by ballot on the first Monday of each month by all the members of the Association then present; those having the highest number of votes to be considered as elected; and the President, Vice-President, Treasurer and Secretary to be elected at the same time and in the same manner; all officers so elected to serve until their successors are elected and qualified. The first election under this Constitution shall be held on the eighth day of June, 1861.

art. IX. The Executive Council shall be authorized to divide the active members of the Association into companies, battalions, squadrons, regiments and brigades; and to select, appoint and commission all officers suitable for the same, and the proper direction and command [256] thereof; and all commissions granted by said Council shall be signed by the President and Secretary of the Association, or by a majority of the Executive Council; and any commission issued as aforesaid may at any time be revoked by two-thirds of all the members of the Executive Council.

art. X. The Executive Council shall, from time to time, prescribe the terms and forms upon which members may be admitted to this Association; and a majority of said Council may, at any time, expel any member from the Association.

art. XI. None of the officers named in this Constitution shall be ineligible to receive any appointment and commission from the Executive Council.

art. XII. The Executive Council shall have full power to direct and superintend the action or proceedings of any officer appointed by the ninth Article of this Constitution; and it shall be the duty of said Council to direct and superintend the proceedings of the Association in such manner as will best promote its objects.

art. XIII. This Constitution may be amended at any regular monthly meeting of the Association, provided two-thirds of all the members then present assent to such amendment.

I find among my Confederate papers, and in Major Frank A. Bond's handwriting, the following list of the officers elected on the 8th of June, 1861; all of whom, if my memory serves me correctly, were present at the organization of the Association.

The Association failed. Why I know not; and the Howard county troops, known as the “Maryland cavalry,” June 15, 1861, left Leesburg to join the command of Colonel Angus McDonald at Romney. This company [257] subsequently became the basis of the first battalion of Maryland cavalry under Colonel Ridgley Brown.--(Southern Historical Society Papers, V. 251.)

Wilkes Barre, Pennsylvania.

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