Location: Calvert County MD
Messrs. Editors: While thanking you for your appreciative monographs which have been appearing for the last two Sundays under the head of "Side-Lights on Maryland History" on the genealogy of the Somervell (Somerville, etc.) family, will you kindly permit me to add the following data:
"The dwelling house on the glebe property of Christ Church parish, Calvert county, that was destroyed by fire recently, was a very ancient structure, having been built In 1742.
Its first occupant was Dr. James Somervell, who was banished from Scotland for participating in the "rising of 1715. It is related that Dr. Somervell was one of a number of prisoners to whom was granted the favor of drawing by lot banishment or hanging. When it came to the Doctor's turn to draw the officer in charge proposed to draw for him. to whom the Doctor made grim reply: You shall if you consent to be hanzed should you draw hanging. Dr. Somervell was lucky and drew banishment. He settled In Calvert, and many of his descendants are still living in Southern Maryland."
Dr. Somervell's son James Somervell was in the Revolutionary War. was a captain in the Maryland Line. Sixth Battalion, under command of Col. Otho Holland Williams: was in the battle of Long Island and other engagements, and lost an arm at the battle of Camden. S. C. In McSherry's History of Maryland, under "List of Members of the Cincinnati Society of Maryland." 'taken from the original rolls deposited with the Maryland Historical Society" is the following: "Name James Somervill. Rank Captain. Time of Service 7 years. Time of DismissionReform, 1783. Residence Calvert county."
McSherry also mentions among the list of wounded officers at the battle of Camden. S. C, Captain Sommerwell, 6th.
Capt. James Somervell (my great-greatgrandfather) was twice married. His first wife was Ann Trueman. my great-great-grandmother. One of their children was Thomas Trueman Somervell, my greatgrandfather, who married Margaret Territt Holliday. They had 10 children, one of whom was John Howe Somervell, my grandfather, who married Sarah Scrlvener. Another child (Elizabeth M. married Hon. John H. Sothron.
One of John Howe Somervell's sons is Benjamin Carr Somervell, my father.
The majority of the above names were forgotten in "among the many descendants of Dr. James Somervell, of Scotland and Calvert county," as were also the names of the Misses Louise and Sallle Somervell, of Hamilton. Va.: Frank P. Somervell. Wayside', Md.: James A. Somervell. California: Miss Nellie Stone. Washington. D. C: William S. Somervell, Denver, Col., and Thomas Trueman Somervell Howie and family, of Washington, D. C.
William Howe Somervell. Washington. D. C, August 5. 1903.