New Castle, Delaware
Community History and Archaeology Program 

Tax Assessments in 1683-84 in the New Castle Constabulary

From the Records of the Court of New Castle*
"A List of the Names of all such Persons as Inhabit within ye Constablery of the Town of New castle with ye sums Respectively added to their names what they are to pay towards ye present Tax or Levy for defraying of ye Publicks Charg of the County of Newastle--"

Tax data and census records provide information on who lived in a town at a given date. Tax records provide the additional information of relative wealth.

These records records from the New Castle Constabulary (=New Castle Hundred?) are from the earliest period of the Penn proprietary, just 3 years after his arrival. The tax appears to have been based on the three factors listed: acreage of land outside town, number of town lots, and tithebles, and a modified poll or head tax. The latter is not the type of poll tax used later to disenfranchise voters.

"Tithebles", at least in in colonial Virginia, were "members of the potentially productive labor force: free caucasian males age sixteen or older plus all negroes imported whether male or female, and Indian servants male or female however procured, being sixteen years of age". I don't know the definition of a "titheble" in Delaware in 1685. Note in the table that there are individuals with acreage and/or lots with no "tithebles". So, the tax does not include the individuals themselves, and is not really a "head tax".

Added columns (shown in red) are the decimal equivalent of the L/s/d columns, calculated taxes, wealth (rank order of taxable value), their residence in 1671, and the known location of their lots in New Castle.

Sortable table: click once on column headings to sort. Click a second time to reverse the sort direction.
Residence in 1671 is from Craig's transcription of Wharton's 1671 census and a summary of names in that census
NC=New Castle Town, CH= Crane Hook, SWA=Swanwyck, LH=Long Hook, PER=Paerden Hook, BCI= Bread & Cheese Island
Locations of the town lots (where known) are shown for Heite's map (see below).

#NameAkres of LandTown LottsTitheblesPoundsShillingsPenceDecimal
Heite Map
1John Matson for 1/6 of 800 Akres133160.080.0790CH
2Henry Lemans ye like 133 his Iland 100
in ye back of John Williams
3Hendrick Andries1331420.210.2145CH?
4Eskell Andries133160.080.0791CH?
5William Jansen133160.080.0792NC
6Hendrick Evertson133160.080.0793CH
7Jacob Claeson100110.050.0594-
8John Jaquet2801590.290.2927LH
9Jurian Boatsman370410.200.2046LH
10Arnoldus de Legrang3004770.380.3815-H1, J7
11Oella Paulson100110.050.0595BCI
12Paul Larson100110.050.0596FER
13Englebert Lott1002330.160.1658NCJ1, J2
14Charles Rumsey100110.050.0597-
15William Haigh400440.220.2244-
16Charles Rumsey & John Wattkins64070.350.3520-
17John Darby300330.160.1659-G7
18John Gerretson20011610.300.3024-?
19Robart Hutchison for his brother200014100.240.2436-
20Andries Tilly1501440.220.2143-
21John Ogle400170.350.3518-
22Thomas Spry300611250.620.626NCG6,H1
23Samll Land3001170.350.3519-G8, G9
24John Nettleship1701470.230.2342-
25Giles Barret550221090.540.679-B6
26Epharim Harmon40022920.460.5910NCE7, E12,
27Edward Land1280.130.1362-
28William Welch12650.320.3222-
29Henrick Vandburg450431720.860.863-D2, G13
30Hans Corderus1001390.190.1948-J3, B2
31John Williams Neering500261371.181.182NCH4
32Peter Allricks1000241381.181.181NCH9, C5
33John Moll3906.521570.780.835-H1, H10,
H11, G6
34Capt. Markham100010100.540.548-
35Mathyas De Ring315110.300.3025NCE8, A2
36Domini Tessemaker6660.330.3321-A3
37John White11390.190.1949-A6, E5,
38Ambros Baker805190.450.4512-D8, D9,
39Antonous Bryant811140.570.577SWA?A4, A5,
40Reneer Vandr Cooling1211580.780.784NCB1, D1,
D7, D13,
41John Cann1110.050.0598-
42James Walliam22760.380.3816-G7, J6
43Eldeert Egberts1110.050.0599NCB3, J4
44Gerritt Smith3330.160.1660NCB8?
45Claes Daniell11390.190.1950-
46Hybert Hendricks2220.110.1185-
47Georg More11390.190.1951-
48John Smith214100.240.2437-G1, G6,
49John ffolk114100.240.1941-G3
50Sybrant Folk11390.190.1952-
51John Mandy11390.190.1953-
52John Biscus [Bisk]61920.460.4611-G4, H6,
53Lorrain [Lorrayne]1110.050.05100-G17
54Emilius d Ring51810.400.4013NCA2, E8
55John Bower214100.240.2438-
56Moses d Gam1110.050.05101NCG11
57Adam Hay11390.190.1954-A5
58Governor Penn1110.050.05102-
59Henricus Williams3330.160.1661NCH9, H10
60Josyn Semple2220.110.1186-
61Johannes de Haes214100.240.2439NCD1, H2
62John Harmansan214100.240.2440NCB2
63Isack Tine [Tayne]11390.190.1955NCE7, E12,
64Justa Anries [Andries]11390.190.1956-H4
65John Henrickson11390.190.1957-
66Judah Crawford1110.050.05103-
67Edmond Cantwell100215110.300.3026NCG9, H9
68Henry Jones1002650.320.3223-
69Mary Block3503100.190.1947SWA
70Joseph More1280.130.1363-
71Willow Marslander150180.080.0887-
72Artman Hyam4060.030.02106-
73John Baretsan4060.030.02107SWA?
74Cornelius Johnson80110.050.04104-
75Peter dewitt6080.030.03105PER
76Harman & John Sybranson150180.080.0888PER
77William Corseer150180.080.0889-
78John Carter1280.130.1364-
79Vander Cooling1280.130.1365NC
80Gerardus Wessels2540.270.2728-
81John Dewson1280.130.1366-
82Isack Slover1280.130.1367-
83Harman Lawree1280.130.1368-
84Eldren Forstben1280.130.1369-
85Dierick Hybertson1280.130.1370-
86Claus Daniel1280.130.1371-
87Gerret Jansen [Smith?]1280.130.1372NC?
88Thomas Lanshaw1280.130.1373-
89Hybert Lawerenson2540.270.2729-
90Richard Mattshall3800.400.4014-
91Jan Sybrantson2540.270.2730PER
92Tennis [Teunis] deWitt1280.130.1374PER
93James Hardy1280.130.1375-
94Harman Johnson1280.130.1376PER
95Sybran Jansen2540.270.2731SWA
96John Screek [John
Mattson Skrika]
97Lauranc Andrieson1280.130.1377-
98Mathyas Lawson1280.130.1378-
99Hendrick Leman2540.270.2733-
100Jacob Clasan1280.130.1379-
101Peiter Jacquet1280.130.1380LH
102Vrion Boreson2540.270.2734-
103Oella Paulson [Olof Pålsson]1280.130.1381BCI
104Edward Harry1280.130.1382-
105Paul Lawson [Pål Larsson]2540.270.2735FER
106Humphrey Nicolls1280.130.1383
107John Briscoe1280.130.1384-

* Source: Records of the Court of New Castle on Delaware, 1676 - 1699, Vol II, Colonial Society of Pennsylvania, 1904. Taxes for 1683 and 1684/5 are partially available from Google Books or as a pdf (3 mb) here
Data for 1692 and 1697 are available on microfilm reel R-76, Proprietary Notes RE: Lower Counties, Pnn MS at the Delaware Public Archives, Dover,

† It's possible to see how the taxes were calculated. Sorting of the list by "Town Lotts" shows that there were some individuals with one lot, but no acreage or tithebles. They paid 1s/1d=13d. People with two or three lots paid 2/2 and 3/3 respectively. People with only a single titheble paid 2s/8d=32d, with two tithebles they paid 5/4=64d. Similarly people with 100 acres of land and no other wealth paid 1/1; with 300 acres, 3/3. The tax calclulated by adding these factors is very similar to that demanded in 1653, with only a few exceptions, e.g. John ffolk, and Ephraim Herman.

English money (pound/shilling/pence, L/s/d) is based on 20 shillings/pound, and 12 pence/shilling. I calculated the taxes in decimal pounds as:
calculated tax = =(acres/100 * 13/240)+(#lots*13/240)+(#tithebles*32/240). Only Giles Barret and Epharim [Ephraim] Herman underpaid significantly.

Map locations refer to Louise Heite's reconstruction of property records 1657 to 1736.

Jim Meek