banjo - a stringed musical instrument having a head and neck like a guitar and a body like a tambourine, played with the fingers

bannering - the annual affair of walking the borders of a parish to maintain the local jurisdiction and privileges

banns - (see also ban) publication or posting of the announcement of a coming marriage, a period of time before the actual marriage, to allow advance notice to those who might have some reason to protest

bapt. - abbreviation for baptized

baptism - the ceremony of applying water to a person by immersion, pouring or sprinkling, as a religious rite, symbolic or purification or regeneration, and finalizing initiation into the church

baptismal records - written records kept by the church of those who were baptized.  These usually contain the names of the parents, the date baptized, sometimes the date born, and the names of those who were witnesses and at times their relation to the person baptized

baptistry - the portion of a church used normally for the baptism rites

Baptists - the Christian denomination of church who hold that baptism is only for believers; Separatists under John Smyth formed in Amsterdam in 1608 the first English Baptist congregation.  First U.S. church founded 1639 by Roger Williams in Providence, R. I.  Baptist churches are congregational, with nongoverning general associations, American Baptists, Southern Baptists, etc

bar - in pioneer periods, a pronunciation for the word "bear"

barkary -a tannery

barker - a tanner; one who cries out his sales pitch at carnivals, or cheap shows

barleycorn - a barley grain from which malt liquor is made; at one time, length of a grain of barley was used as a measure

Baron - the lowest rank of English nobility, bestowed by the king for military or other honorable service

Baroness - the wife of a Baron or a lady holding the title in her own right

barrel - a measure of capacity for both liquids and solids.  A barrel of liquor, for example, is equal to 31 ½ gallons

barrel fever - a violent sickness caused by drinking alcoholic drinks to an excess

barrel head - the lid of a barrel.  "on the barrel head" refers to the practice of using it as a table or solid surface on which to conduct a business transaction, out where it could be seen

barrister - a student of law who had been called to the bar and practices as advocate in the superior courts; an English law term

barrow - a castrated male hog (boar)

barter system - a method of exchange of goods, used in areas where money itself is scarce; a direct exchange, one item for another

baseborn - a child of humble birth, sometimes used to mean a child of an unmarried woman

baseline - an east and west imaginary line used in the survey of lands by the rectangular survey system

base-son - an illegitimate child

bason - found many times in old wills, a misspelling referring to a bowl or basin

bastar d - a child born out of wedlock, illegitimate.  By English law and that of some of the states, the subsequent marriage of the parents of a bastar d legitimates the child

bastille - a tower or bastion of a castle or a small fortress; also a wooden tower on wheels; a prison

bateau - a light, long-tapering, flat-bottomed river boat, propelled by long oars or poles, and steered by a sweep at the back end.  Used principally by the French Canadians

baton - a staff, or stick, used as weapon

battalion - one of the large divisions of the army; may differ in size.  In U.S. may consist of from two to twelve companies of men.  Forms part of a regiment

battery - a number of guns placed in battle array.  Also the name of a small kettle used to make sugar from syrup.  Also the act of striking another party as an act of violence, as in "assault and battery"

bauer - (German) peasant

bautizar - (Spanish) christian

Bavaria - a state in southern Germany, whose capital city is Munich

bawdy house - house of prostitution

bayberry candle - a candle made from the wax of the Wax-myrtle fruit, or the Bayberry tree.  Frequently used for such in colonial times

Bayern - (German) Bavaria

bayou - a stream with little current, marshy, sluggish, forming an inlet or outlet to a larger body of water; used as a term in the southern U.S.

B.C. - used to denote time period, as "before Christ"; also an abbreviation for British Columbia, a Canadian province

b.d. - abbreviation for birthdate

beargrass - a coarse pasture grass

bearing tree - a tree blazoned or marked in some manner to indicate a point or corner of a boundary, used in pioneer land surveying

beau - the suitor of a lady; also a man who gives extraordinary attention to his manner of dress and social manners

bed warmer - an object used to warm the bed before retiring for the night; heated bricks were sometimes used for this

beeswax - the material secreted by bees to form the honeycomb, used at times as rub or polish for furniture

begraben - (German) buried

bellringer - the person designated to ring the church bells for service, or to sound an alarm

bellwether - the leading sheep of a flock, on whose neck there is hung a bell

benchmark - a mark used by surveyors, cut in rock or other material, in a line of levels at different heights.  Also used to denote a trademark of a craftsman on an item of his manufacture

bench warrant - an order for the arrest of a person who has failed to heed an order for his appearance at a trial

beneficiary - one who receives benefits from a will, or from other matters or property, or for one whose benefit a trust is created.  Also a person receiving funds from a life insurance policy on a deceased person

benefit of clergy - usually a negative term, without benefit of clergy, used to indicate that a clergyman was not present to officiate or minister

bequeath - the giving of personal property in a will.  If land is given, the proper term is devise

bequest - a gift of personal property by a will

betrothal - the engagement of a woman in a marriage contract, in which vows are pledged

betrothed - the agreement of a woman to a marriage ceremony, in which vows are to be pledged

betterments - improvements, usually buildings or structures, on a piece of land

bible records - those records of a family, pertaining to births, deaths, and marriages, inscribed on a blank or particular page of the bible, sometimes continued by several generations

bibliography - a list of books of a particular subject, author, or printer.  Example: a bibliography of Virginia books would be a list of books which pertain to Virginia

B.I.C. - "born in the covenant", a Mormon term denoting those children born to a couple who previously have been sealed and thus are automatically sealed to the parents

biers - the movable stand on which a corpse is placed before burial, or that on which the corpse is carried to the grave

bill - a written document submitted to a legislature for consideration for passage as a law or act

bill of lading - a receipt for goods to be carried by another in which safe delivery to the consignee is agreed

Bill of Rights - first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution

bill of sale - a written document showing transfer of ownership for personal property, given by the seller to the buyer as proof of ownership, and usually setting forth the terms.  Frequently used in the sale of slaves

billet - housing for soldiers in a home or non-military building

billet-doux - love letter

binder - a written document providing a binding agreement between to parties.  Also farm machinery used for cutting and tying grain into bundles, or sheaths

Binding Day - the second Tuesday after Easter.  Also known as Binding Tuesday

biographical works - books giving the history of the lives of one or more persons

biography - a written record, usually in book form, of the life of an individual

bion - corruption of the word Bayern, as found in certain places as a result of the way the word sounds

birth certificates - certificates issued by governmental health departments which certify the birth record of an individual, and usually include the name of the parents as well as the date and place of the person being certified

bisexual - having both sexes in the same individual

Bishop - a clergyman consecrated for the spiritual government of a diocese, ranking next below an archbishop

bivouac - to camp, especially at night, in the open air without tents

Black Maria - the slang name for the vehicle used to transport prisoners to jail

black measles - measles in which the breaking out is of a dark color

black powder - charcoal, saltpeter and sulphur in an explosive mixture used for gunpowder

black plague -a form of the bubonic plague, highly contagious and deadly, in which spots of blood under the skin turn black

blackstrap molasses - a cheap form of molasses made as a by-product in the refining of sugar, used as a food and highly regarded as a natural food rich in vitamins

black tobacco belt - a number of Kentucky counties in the western and south western part of the state, and a portion of Tennessee adjoining, where tobacco is a principal crop.

Blacks - a term for Negroes

bleeding - thought to be a cure for many diseases and practiced widely by doctors in earlier times.  It was thought that an excess of blood was the cause of many diseases, but modern medical research has shown that in most cases it weakened the patient

blinky milk - partially soured milk

blood relative - one who is related by having a common ancestor

bloody flux - a form of diarrhea

Bluegrass Region - the area surrounding Lexington, Kentucky, notable for the bluegrass growing in the limestone soil

bluejohn - milk with water added to it, or a thin milk with little of no cream, bluish in color

blue laws - colonial laws which prohibited many activities, particularly on Sundays

blunderbuss - a short musket with a large bore, firing many slugs and doing great damage at short range without exact aim, accompanied by loud report

B.L.W. - Bounty Land Warrant

boarder - one who has food and lodging at the house of another, at an agreed rate

boarding house - a home offering lodging and food, at an agreed price, to others

Bohemia - a historic province in western Czechoslovakia, adjacent to Bavaria in Germany, with capitol city of Prague

bona fide - acting or done in good faith; genuine

bond - a written document and agreement by which a party agrees to pay a certain sum of money as penalty if certain acts are not preformed, either by himself or by others in a required manner

bondsman - one who posts a bond, with a certain sum as penalty, for others, to guarantee certain acts to be preformed

Boone's trace - the first road or trace in Kentucky, that from the Cumberland Gap to Boonesborough was marked out in March 1775 by Daniel Boone under a contract with Cor. Richard Henderson.  It was known as Boone's trace for almost a century

bootstrap - a strap affixed to the back side, near the top, of a boot, by which it could be pulled onto the foot

bordello - a brothel

borough - an inhabited town, larger than a village, having a form of municipal government, in the northeastern part of the U.S.

bound - a bound person was one under obligation to preform certain duties; a young person was sometimes bound-out to another to act as a servant, in return for a certain sum of money for the family

boundary rider - one who made periodical trips by horseback around fields checking fences for those spots in need of repair

bound-boy - see bound; a boy usually serving an apprenticeship

bounds - a landmark; the boundary line of a territory; the territory near a boundary

bounty - a gratuity given to recruits on enlistment, an extra amount of money or land, in return for agreements to serve a specified time

bounty hunter - a reward was given to those who would track down escaped slaves and return them.  Those who made a business of so doing were known as boun

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