Tredyffrin Easttown Historical Society
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Source: April 1955 Volume 8 Number 3, Pages 77–78

An eighteenth-century Quaker marriage certificate

Conrad Wilson

An interesting certificate of marriage found among the Lewis Family Papers in the possession of William West Wilson of Elda Farm, Berwyn, Pa., is here published for the first time. This old certificate, written in a large clear hand on now fragile paper, records the marriage in 1769 of Azariah Lewis of Newtown Township and Hannah Scott of Easttown Township, daughter of the James Scott who figured so prominently in the controversy over an early road of the locality (see Volume VI, No.1, pp10 ff.). It is of especial interest to historians because of its variation from the usual form of Quaker marriages, for which there is an explanation, if not apology, written on the certificate itself by the groom, and directed to the Recorder of Goshen meeting.

Whereas Azariah Lewis Son of Nathan Lewis of Newtown Township County of Chester and province of Pennsylvania & Hannah Scott Daughter of James Scott of Easttown Township County and Province aforesd. Haveing published Their Intention of Marriage with Each Other at Two Seperate Monthly Meetings at Goshon and No Reasonable or Lawfull Objection appearing Now these may Certify whome it may Concern That for the Full Accomplishing of Their Said Intention The Said Azariah Lewis and Hannah Scott With Divine permission Did appear In A poblick Assembly At Newtown meeting House The 29th Day of the 11 th Month 1769

Page 78

Where Said Azariah Lewis Did Take Said Hannah Scott by the Hand and in A Sober Manner Said He Took her to be His wife hopeing by Divine Assistance To be a True and Loveing Husband to her Untill Death Seperate Them and then & there in Like Manner Said Hannah Scott Did Say She Took Said Azariah Lewis to be Her husband hopeing by Divine Assistance To be a True and Loveing Wife To him untill Death Seperate them and Moreover The Said Azariah Lewis and Hannah Scott She according To the Custom of Marriage Assuming The Name of her Husband Did then & There to These presents set their hands and We whose Names are hereunder Written being Present at Said Marriage in Manner afforesd. Haveing Freedom Do also Subscribe Our Names as Witnesses the Day And Year Above Written. —
John Moore, Enos Thomas, Samuel Caley, Phebe Faro, Jane Morris, William Hunter, Isaac Thomas, Levi Lewis, Sasanna Daugherty, Didymus Lewis, Francis Yarnell, Sarah Williamson, Elizabeth Woodward, John Williamson, Ann Celloy (Caley?), Sarah Scott, Henry Lewis, Philip Moore, Lewis Morris, Mordecai Massey, Sarah Williamson, William Regester, Abigail Regester, Mary Morris, Abraham Pratt, Hannah Thomas, Hannah James, Susanna Daugherty Junr., Rachel Starr (?) (Faro?), Hannah Hunter, Mary Thomas, Jane Pratt, William Hunter, Lydia Baker, Joseph Baker, Elizabeth Jarvis, William Reece, Mary Reece, John Faro.,(?), Nathan Scott., Azariah Lewis, Hannah Lewis, Nathan Lewis, Margaret Lewis, James Scott, Sara Scott, Thomas Thomas, John Scott, John Scott Junr., Wm. Lewis, David Lewis, Abner Lewis, Margt. Lewis, Alexr. Manley (?), Henry Lewis, Benjan. Brannan, ...nice Brannan, Wm. Garrett Junr., Debbe Garrett, Da(Niel) Williamson, Abraham Starr(?) (Faro?), Jennie Caley, Mary Lewis, Edward Hunter, Ann Caley, Lydia Baker, Jane Scott.

To the Recorder of Goshen Monthly Meeting —
Esteemd Frd Whereas it has hapend there is a Variation in form Between me & my Reputd Frds I hereby Let thee Anderstand that I have Not Differd from them through any Selfish motive Nor in order to introduce New Modes omongst Men By my meaning is that if it is possible for me By obedience to the first former of all things to Convince the world that there is No form in it to be in the Least Depended on But Entire Submission to his will So then Every Act will Bring Necessary form with it & the Less form Better & I Believe it to be the Real Right of God to Change form & Act at pleasure & I Believe I have Complyd with the form of my Frds as far as my God Requires. So if thee pleasees thee may Record this Certificate as Soon as Can Conveniently & Return it & I Expect to Satisfy thee But if it is any Burden on thy mind to Do it I Should Chuse thee to Leave it undone from thy Frd.
Azariah Lewis

Certificate of Marriage, Azariah & Hannah Lewis. RECORDED.

EDITOR"S NOTE: The quote above was presumably transcribed as written with the idiosyncratic capitalization and spelling irregularities from the original document, and no attempt has been made to change them.


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