Family Stories

Linton to Berkeley – Release of Rights

Note by Phyllis Brown:  Captain John Linton was born in Fairfax County, Virginia, in 1750.  I believe he was possibly born in January, since the release of rights was dated January 1775.  Usually a man came into his rights of inheritance at the age of twenty-five.  John’s parents were Moses Linton and Susanna Hancock.  Moses Linton was a widower, whose first wife, Susanna Harrison, had left him with two sons, William and Thomas.  Moses was probably about fifty years of age when he married his second wife – she was about eighteen.  They had a daughter, Catherine Jennings Linton, born in 1748, and another son, Moses, born in 1752.  Moses Linton had served as a justice of the peace in Fairfax County for several years, but in 1752 declined to serve due to deafness.  Evidently he was a man of some distinction because he is always listed as Moses Linton, Gentleman.  He died in October, 1753.  To me, the most interesting item listed in his inventory was a violin.  It would seem rather unusual for Colonial Virginia – almost a luxury.  Perhaps this is where I get my love of music.  I can just imagine Moses pulling out his violin at night and playing songs for his children before they went to bed.  Or at parties and get-togethers playing for the dancers.  Several books were also listed in his inventory.  Moses was an educated man who could read and write.  Perhaps his favorite books were about history, or most likely, the Bible.  I think it interesting that all Moses’ horses were named.  He had a bay mare named Stockings, a gelding named King and one named Whitefoot, horses named Sally and Pumps, and several others.  I feel very sad when I think about him dying and leaving so many young children.  What a responsibility for Susanna, who was probably only about twenty-four.  She had her own three children, Catherine who was five, John who was three, and Moses who was only one.  Then she also had William, who was probably twelve and Thomas who was perhaps ten.  Burr Harrison, most likely grandfather or uncle of the two older Linton children was named their guardian.  They probably lived in his household.  They must have died at a young age because in 1775 John was listed as eldest son and only surviving heir of his father.  The son Moses was listed as living with John in 1771, but must also have died by 1775.  After Moses Linton died his widow, Susanna Hancock Linton, married John Berkeley.  John had children by his first wife, Susanna had children by Moses Linton, and they eventually had at least two children together!  What a confusing family!

Linton to Berkeley – Release of Rights

Know all men by these presents that I, John Linton, of Loudoun County, in the Colony of Virginia, the only surviving son and heir at law to my father, Moses Linton, late of the County of Fairfax, Gentleman, deceased, and eldest son and heir apparent to my mother, as well for and in consideration of my education and maintenance by John Berkeley of the said County of Loudoun and Susanna his wife, my said Mother and Administratrix of all and singular the goods and chattels, rights and credits which were of my said Father at the time of his death who died intestate as for and in consideration of the sum of three hundred pounds current money of Virginia to me in hand paid by the said John Berkeley at and before the sealing and delivery of these presents the receipt whereof I do hereby acknowledge and thereof and of every part and parcel thereof do acquit and release and forever discharge the said John Berkeley and Susanna his wife, their heirs, executors, administrators and assigns have bargained and sold and by these presents do bargain and sell unto the said John Berkeley and to his heirs, executors, administrators and assigns all my right Title, interest, property claim and demand whatsoever to the Estate of my said Father and Mother or to the Estates of my deceased Brothers and Sisters.  To have and to hold all my rights of the before mentioned Estates with issues, increases and profits thereof unto the said John Berkeley, his executors, administrators and assigns to the only proper use and behoof of him the said John Berkeley and of his heirs and assigns forever.  And I the said John Linton for myself, my heirs, executors and administrators and of every of them do fully and absolutely release, acquit and discharge the said John Berkeley and Susanna his wife their and each their executors, administrators and assigns and every of them of and from all manner claim, challenge and demands whatsoever for or on account of the said Estates or any profits made thereby or upon any other account whatsoever from the beginning of the world to the date of these presents.  In witness I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 30th day of January in the year of our Lord seventeen hundred seventy five.

John Linton

Sealed and delivered in presence of:  W. Ellzey, Peter Acker, Joseph Lewis

Received of John Berkeley three hundred pounds current money of Virginia being the full consideration to be paid by him to me in full perfection of the above bargain and sale and release this 30th day of January 1775.

John Linton

Test.:  W. Ellzey, Peter Acker

At a court held for Loudoun County, May the 18th, 1775, this deed of sale and the receipt thereunder written was proved by the oaths of William Ellzey, Peter Acker and Joseph Lewis, witnesses thereto and ordered to be recorded.

Teste           Cha. G. Binns

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