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Hugh Dean


Roses & Berrys


D-27/Berrys (300 acres, 24 Dec 1788), D-28/Berrys (400 acres, 26 Dec 1788), D-27/Roses (200 acres, 9 May 1788), D28/Roses (200 acres, 26 Dec 1788), D-86/Roses (200 acres, 24 Dec 1788)

Hugh Dean. Origin: Loyalist.

Hugh Dean(e) was an American Loyalist who went to New York from Maryland to escape the American “rebels.” After fleeing to the Bahamas, he was a merchant who received land on New Providence, Abaco, Inagua, and four land grants on Long Island. His first Long Island grant contained 200 acres, issued on 9 May 1788 in the area of Roses. His second Long Island grant was for 200 acres on 24 December, 1788, also in the area of Roses. That land was described as being bounded by his land, the sea, and by vacant land on two sides. His third grant was for 300 acres on 24 December 1788 in the Berry’s area. The forth grant for 200 acres was issued on 26 December 1788, again in the Roses area. It was bounded by the land of James Ridley, his own land, vacant land, and by the sea.

It’s possible that Hugh Dean(e) was Peter Dean’s brother, as despite the sometime-spelling difference of their surnames, as they ended up adjacent on land grants. Hugh Dean was described by Christopher Curry (2007:61) as a “notorious slaver,” suggesting that he wasn’t just buying and selling slaves at Vendue House in Nassau, but likely also financing slaving missions to and from Africa. He was also likely a brutal slaveowner, although he did manumit a handful of slaves between 1796 and 1799.

On all four grants is written the word “Loyalist.” On 2 November 1804 Hugh, advertised in the Bahamas Gazette a reward for information leading to the return of two negro men named Mountjoy and Sambo. In a letter to Lord Shirley, Lord Dunmore describes several Loyalists of Abaco in derogatory terms: Hugh Dean is labeled “formerly a peddler,” as he had been a proprietor of a dry goods establishment in New York City.

References: HB App. E., BOL, Curry 2007, Shirley

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