Old Wills

1748/49 Will of Solomon Jones – St. Mary’s County, Maryland

Solomon Jones is my 6th great-grandfather.  His wife was Catherine Burns before marriage.  I descend from their daughter, Margaret Monica Jones, 1730-1763, who married Thomas Witherington, 1724-1787, about 1747.  Both Margaret and Thomas were born in St. Mary’s County, and at some point moved to Charles County, Maryland, where they died.  Their daughter, Rhoda A. Witherington, 1751-1849, married Ignatius O’Bryan, 1750-1831, and moved to Washington County, Kentucky, during the Maryland to Kentucky migration in the 1790’s. 

Notice in the following will the oddities of penmanship – words that begin with ‘d’ have a downward slant, making it a bit difficult to read – such as desire, direction. Once you realize how they are written, it is easier. And if a word ends in ‘d’ a long swoop is put over the entire word. Interesting.

Will of Solomon Jones

St. Mary’s County Will Book 1733-1776, Pages 229-230

The last will of Solomon Jones

In the name of God, I Solomon Jones, of St. Mary’s County in the province of Maryland, being weak but of sound and perfect memory, thanks be to God and being willing to settle what worldly estate it hath pleased God to bestow upon me, do make and ordain this my last will and testament.

First, I give my soul to almighty God who gave it, hoping by the merits of my blessed Saviour, to obtain full manumission of my sins and my body to be buried at the direction of my executors hereafter named.

First.  I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife, Catharine, one third part of all my land during her natural life, and one third part of all my personal estate as hers proper forever.

I give and bequeath to my son, James, one horse, saddle and bridle, this horse to be a likely horse of four years old, and the saddle and bridle of fifty shillings price, and that to be his full part of my personal estate.

My desire is that all the remainder of my estate be equally divided amongst my other children, Margaret Monica, Solomon, Walter, and if my wife is now with child, that to have an equal part with them, and my will and desire is that my wife have the care and tuition of all my children till they arrive to the following years, viz., – the boys to the age of twenty and one years, and the girls to the age of sixteen years, and they to be brought up at her directions and she to have their several parts of my estate in

her care until they arrive to the ages above.

I do hereby revoke and make void all wills by me formerly made, and, ordain this to be my last will and testament, and hereby constitute and appoint my beloved wife, Catharine, my full executrix in execution thereof.  In witness whereof I have hereunto put my hand and seal this 5th day of March Anno Domini 1748/9

Solomon Jones

Signed, sealed and delivered in presence of James Egerton, Robert Holton, John Jones, James Burns

St. Mary’s County, April 24th, 1749

Then James Egerton, John Jones and James Burns, three of the subscribing witnesses to the foregoing will, being duly and solemnly sworn on the holy Evangels of Almighty God, depose and say that they saw the testator, Solomon Jones, sign the foregoing will and heard him publish and declare the same to be his last will and testament, that at the time of his so doing he was to the best of their apprehension of sound and disposing mind and memory and that they subscribed their respective  names as witnesses to the said will in the presence of the said testator and at his request.

Sworn to before me, Thomas Aisquith, Deputy County Clerk of St. Mary’s County

The day above the decedent’s widow made her election and stands to the will, certified by me, Thomas Asiquith, Deputy County Clerk of St. Mary’s County.

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