Bounty Land - as an inducement to get men to serve in the army, free land was offered in lieu of money which was in short supply; after 1830, those who had not used their land warrants could exchange them for money

Bounty Land Warrants - for those men who were enlisting in the army in return for land, Bounty Land Warrants were issued by the Secretary of State.  These enabled the men to settle on the land in exchange for the warrant; many of these were sold to others, and after 1830, some were exchanged for scrip.  The last bounty land act was in 1855, providing a bounty of 160 acres for those who had served at least 14 days of fought in a battle.  At times, heirs of the men utilized the warrants for land.

bowie knife - large, long-bladed, curved and double-edged knife near the point

box supper - a church social affair in which the girls and ladies prepared the lunch and packed it in a box or basket; these were placed on a table, unmarked, and the girl the supper companion of the man who chose the box she had prepared

Boxing Day - in England, the day after Christmas; shopkeepers were visited by their customer's employees for small gifts

Braddock's Road - a road constructed about 1780 from Baltimore, Maryland westward to the area near Pittsburgh

brand - the mark made by burning with a hot iron, or by a particular cut or notch on the ear, of a horse or cow to show ownership.  Brand marks were usually recorded in a brand book in the nearest community or county seat

branding iron - the tool used to brand horses and cows as a mark of ownership; this was heated in a fire and pressed against the hide

breeches - a pair of trousers, usually coming just below the knee

Brethren - a religious group also known as German Baptists, and Dunkers, Tunkers, or Dunkards.  Name is derived from the German "to dip", baptism being by immersion.  Introduced into Pennsylvania in 1719.  Their beliefs banned war, oaths, alcohol, tobacco, and worldly amusements.  Members wear plain simple garments

brick-dust - the dust secured from breaking and pounding of bricks, used as a scrubbing powder

bride - a woman about to be married or very recently married

bridegroom - a man about to be married or very recently married

brief - a summary of the points and law in a case, drawn up by the counsel in charge of a court case

brig - a square-rigged two-masted ship; also a jail for sailors held for a short term

brigade - a large subdivision of an army, usually of two or more regiments

brigadier-general - the commanding officer of a brigade

brigantine - a small vessel equipped both for sailing and rowing; also a two masted square-rigged ship.  Used frequently by pirates

Brighamite - the followers of Brigham Young after the split in the Mormon Church; those who followed Young went to Utah, and were known as Brighamites.  Others followed the son of the murdered Joseph Smith, settling in Missouri, and were Josephites

brimstone - formerly the common name for sulphur

broadcloth - fine plain-woven dressed, double-width black cloth used chiefly for men's clothing

broadside - a large sheet of paper which was printed on one side only and usually posted in a public place, for announcements or news.  The beginning of "yellow journalism".  Also refers to an extra edition of a newspaper.  Also the side of a ship above the water between the bow and the quarter, or the simultaneous discharge of the artillery on one side of a warship

brothel - a house of prostitution

brother - the son of one's mother or father; older references also can mean a brother-in-law

brother-in-law - the brother of one's husband or wife; the husband of one's sister; occasionally the husband of one's wife sister

brownstone house - a dwelling constructed of a reddish-brown sandstone type of material, used commonly in New York

bruder - (German) brother

B.S. - abbreviation for Bill of Sale

buckboard - an old type of farm wagon which had a single seat on the front of a buoyant platform connected to the axles

buckshot - a kind of ammunition, a lead shot smaller than a bullet, used in shooting deer and large game.  It's name is derived from the distance at which a "buck" or deer can be killed

buckskin - a nickname of the American troops during the Revolution; leather breeches, gloves, etc. made from the hide of a deer

Buddhism - one of the great religions of the world, a system of philosophy and ethics, founded by Buddha, less formal than Hinduism and a greater emphasis on self-denial and compassion

buffalo chips - dried manure of buffalo or oxen, used for heat, making a short very hot fire.  Also called bull chips

buffalo lick - a place of a salt deposit, where great herds of buffalo would gather, for the salt

buffalo trace - a road or path made by the herds of buffalo, usually leading to a salt lick.  These were used as early roads by frontiersmen, and were as wide as our city streets, sometimes worn as a depression in the ground

buggy - a light one or two horse wagon with four wheels, usually sitting one or two persons.  Used for short trips much as we would use an automobile

buggy robe - a thick woven (or fur) blanket to cover the lap of those riding in a buggy

buggy whip - a long handled light whip used to control the horses pulling a buggy, usually mounted upright by the drivers seat when not in hand

bulgarian buttermilk - a thick, sour, yogurt-like buttermilk, much prized for its food value and for soothing the stomach; seldom now available

bullpen - an enclosure serving as a temporary prison, in use even today in some jails as a temporary holding place for prisoners

bullwhacker - the whip used by drivers when controlling a number of horses pulling a wagon, or for oxen; also the term used for the driver

bundling - to sleep in one's clothes in the same bed with persons of the opposite sex; once customary in New England, and in Wales

bung hole - the round opening in the bottom of a barrel, to permit the contents to drain out; to close, a stopper called the bung was used

bur. Abbreviation for buried

Bureau of American Ethnology - a governmental bureau concerned with the customs, crafts, culture and characteristics of the American Indians; published a long series of volumes

Bureau of the Census - a federal agency charged with the taking of the decennial censuses

Bureau of Land Affairs - also known as the Bureau of Land Management; concerned with sale (or purchase) of federal lands

Bureau of Pensions - a federal agency charged with the administering of the pension acts for those who had served in the various wars

burge - (German) sponsor

burger - (German) citizen

burgess - a free person in a town; also, a term used for delegates to various state conventions for legislative purposes

burgesses - state legislative conventions in colonial times

burgher - (German) an inhabitant of a town

burial records - also called interment records.  These were recorded by various cities, and churches, of the date of burial in a cemetery.  Valuable for research when death records cannot be located

bushfighter - the method of fighting in the forest, i.e., from behind a tree or bush, in opposition to the British traditional manner or marching entire columns into the fray.  This was utilized by the American colonists to the great consternation of the British who did not feel it was a fair way to fight

bushwhacker - a backwoodsman who fought from behind bushes, or in ambush.  During the Civil War, irregular combatants took to the woods to ambush the enemy, in a type of guerilla warfare

buttery room - a pantry, located near the kitchen or dining area, where food was kept.  These were unheated and did preserve the food better.  Usually had cabinets and shelves also for dishes and cooking utensils

by these presents" - in written legal documents, used to refer to the paper in which the term appears

ca - abbreviation for circa, meaning "about".  Used frequently before a year date to indicate that it was approximately the date

cabin raising - the gathering together of neighbors and friends to build a log cabin or other building, by the donation of their labor.  When complete, it was a time for eating and drinking and merry-making

cadger - a hawker, or street-seller, or one who travels from town to town selling butter, eggs, or other produce or goods

cadre - the complement of officers forming a regiment; a list of such officers

Cahokia - a fort and garrison, established in 1699 a few miles south of the present East St. Louis in Illinois Country, the oldest town in the Mississippi Valley, a regular meeting place for Indian traders, merchants, explorers, and adventurers.  After thirteen years of British occupation, George Rogers Clark gained possession in 1778, but had been at one time important to the French

cairn - a pyramid of rough stones, used as a boundary marker, or by the Scotch particularly, as a burial monument

caisson - a wagon for conveying ammunition

Cajun - a corruption of the word Acadian, often used in referring to the people of French descent in Louisiana

calendar - an analyzed, index list of the contents of a document or book

calligraphy - beautiful or elegant penmanship, used in later years to refer to any type of handwriting

calliope - a musical instrument consisting of a series of steam whistles, played with a keyboard much like an organ; associated usually with a circus, in which calliopes are mounted in gaily decorated wagons, or on an excursion boat

calomel - a purgative or laxative, chiefly mercurous chloride

C.A.L.S. - abbreviation for Certified American Lineage Specialist, a category of professional genealogists certified as to their ability by the Board for the Certification of Genealogists, Washington, D.C.

cambric - a kind of fine white linen used in the making of handkerchiefs

cambric tea - a much diluted tea, by the addition of milk or water, for a children's beverage

Camp Fever - a term for typhus

camp follower - women who followed the encampment of soldiers for the purpose of prostitution

camp meeting - a religious evangelical tent meeting, a revival, sometimes held in the open, in which those attending brought their own food in many cases and stayed for a number of days

campaign - a continuous series of military operations to accomplish a goal

campbellites - a religious group named for its founder Alexander Campbell

camphor - a whitish crystalline substance with bitter taste and highly aromatic, used as medicine

canal - artifical watercouse, dug for the purpose of uniting lakes or rivers, to provide for water transportation by canal boats

canal boat - a wide flat bottomed boat used on canals for transportation of passengers and goods, propelled by long oars or by teams of mules from the banks

candle - to inspect an egg by means of light at both ends

candleberry - a name for the bayberry tree, from whose fruit a wax is obtained to make candles

candlemold - a mold in which candles are made, by hand

candlesnuffer - a rod on which a cuplike end is used to snuff out the flame from the candle

canine madness - hydrophobia

canon - a rule, law or decree of the church

canon law - laws or decrees with jurisdiction over matters controlled by a church

canton - one of the sovereign states of the Swiss Federation; also a quarter portion of the flag, shield or emblem

canvas - a coarse unbleached hemp or flax cloth, used widely for sails and other products

carding - the process by which wool or cotton fibers are combed and straightened in preparation for spinning

carpet-bagger - a derivise, contemptous term used for those persons who spread over the South after the Civil War to make quick profits from the ravaged conditions there; they were said to carry all their possessions in a carpet bag; also to refer to a political aspirant in a locality in which he had no connections

carrying the coals to Newcastle - a term used in describing those who were attempting to provide goods and services in an area already saturated with such goods or services

carte blanche - full discretionary power, to do as one pleases; also a blank paper given to one to fill in with his own terms

cartel - a written agreement pertaining to the exchange or ransom of prisoners, or a letter or challenge

cartography - the drawing of maps and charts

cartwright - a skilled craftsman who was proficient in making wagons

case law - legal decisions based upon a previous court decision

Cash Entry Files - at the National Archives, a file containing applications for land sold by the government for cash, a receipt for the money, and a certificate which authorized the purchaser to secure a patent.  Primarily after 1820

cashiered - dismissed from military service or a fellowship in disgrace or disqualification

catarrh - inflammation of a mucous membrane, usually causing profuse flow of nose and eyes, usually following a cold and fever, and supposed to run down from the brain

catechism - a formal question and answer ceremony in which one is qualified upon completion as a member of a church

cathartic - a purgative laxative for the bowels

Catholic - a member of the Roman

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