It was a dark and stormy morning – yes, yes it was. Thunder, lightning and rain in torrents. Internet connection wasn’t there. So this post is late today!
Today I share with you the will and codicil of William Hayden from Washington County Will Book A, pages 21-24. It is one of the earliest of Washington County’s wills. The corners of the will book are a bit ragged, so a few words of the will is missing.
William Hayden was part of the Maryland to Kentucky group that came to Kentucky in 1785-1790. He and brother Basil, were from St. Mary’s County, Maryland, sons of George Hayden, 1718-1754, and his first wife. After the death of this first wife George Hayden married a woman by the name of Charity. When George died in 1754, in addition to William and Basil, who were 18 and 12 respectively, were children Charles, 8; George, 7; Mary, 6; and Frances, 4 – the last four, children of George and Charity.
George Hayden’s parents were William and Elizabeth Hayden. William died in 1733, Elizabeth lived another 28 years, dying in 1761 (after son George). George’s sons, William and Basil, received land called Shankes Resque, containing one hundred and two acres, from their grandmother.
William Hayden married Elizabeth Thompson in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, in 1764. Together they had nine children – Charles, Ann, Bennett, Henry, Wilford, Mary “Mollie”, George, Thomas and Elizabeth. Elizabeth Thompson Hayden died in 1788. The Catholic settlement on the Rolling Fork River, at the small town now known as Calvary, dates from 1788, and as is mentioned in The Centenary of Catholicity In Kentucky, it is possible that some families may have arrived a year or two earlier. If so, Elizabeth may have been one of the first to be buried there. It is also possible she died in Maryland before the family left for Kentucky.
On January 25, 1790, William Haydon married Mildred Hager in Nelson County, Kentucky. Mildred was also called Melleta (as in William’s will). Was this a nickname? Or a middle name? Her father was likely dead and her stepfather and mother signed the note. She and William had two sons, William Jr. and Robert.
Children listed in William Hayden’s will were William, Robert, Elizabeth, Molly, Thomas, George and deceased daughter Ann. His four older sons – Charles, Bennett, Henry and Wilford – are not mentioned. It is quite likely he provided for them at the time of their marriage.
Will of William Hayden
Washington County Will Book A, Pages 21-24
In the name of God, amen. I, William Hayden, of Washington County and district of Kentucky, being of sound and perfect mind and memory, blessed be God, do this 24th day of March in the year of our Lord 1794, make and publish this my last will and testament in manner following, that is to say, first I will and bequeath my body to its parent Earth and my soul to God, its first great giver, and after my lawful debts are paid out of my worldly real and personal estate, I will and bequeath as follows.
I will and bequeath to my loving wife Melleta Hayden, the plantation on road ? during her widowhood. In case I should die before her. In case she should marry, the thirds of the same during her natural life, remainder to my sons William and Robert, their heirs and assigns. Equally to be divided between them both with all said plantation and appurtenances. My will and desire is that the plantation I now live on in Pottinger’s Creek and the money arising from the . . . interest for the use and benefit of (William) . . .
And Robert equally to be divided. I will and bequeath my Negro wench Rose to my loving wife during her natural life, remainder, and her offspring to my aforesaid two sons William and Robert. I will and bequeath a Negro wench called Agnes to my daughter Elizabeth, her heirs and assigns forever. I will and bequeath a Negro wench named Charity to my daughter Molly, her heirs and assigns forever, and in case one should die, the survivor to heir the other, i. e., Molly and Betsy.
I will and bequeath my sorrel horse to my loving wife, Melleta Hayden. I will a mare and colt by the name of Titus to my son William. I will and bequeath to each of my deceased daughter, Anny’s children, a three year old heifer. All other my accounts, good and chattels to the use and benefit of my two sons William and Robert, but in case that my daughters Molly and Betsy and my sons William and Robert should die before they come to age to will or any of them, I will that my sons Thomas and George share their remainder after my first heirs. My will is that there be a high mass offered for me at the anniversary of my death and twelve low Masses as soon as convenient, to be paid out of what is owing to me of my brother Basil in whiskey. I constitute and appoint my loving wife, Melleta Hadyen and Hatton Hilton and my brother Basil Hayden, executors of this my last will and testament.
In presence of Basil Hayden, Jr., Philip Lee, Luke Mudd
Made, published and signed this 24 day of March 1794.
I will and bequeath moreover to my aforesaid wife, Melleta Hayden, seventy-five bushels of corn in the hands of Basil Hayden, Sr., likewise the two beds in his house and one for her use the other for the use of sons William and Robert. I will a featherbed and furniture to my daughter Molly, also to my daughter Elizabeth one featherbed and furniture, and in case one of my said daughters should die remainder to the other, remainder to my sons, George and Thomas. I will and bequeath all the provision about the house to my wife, Melleta, for the use of the now family. Witness my hand and seal this 24th day of March 1794 as above.
Signed, published, made in the presence of us,
Luke Mudd, Basil Hayden, Jr., Robert Hayden
At a county court held for Washington County the fifth day of June 1794
This last will and the codicil thereon endorsed was proved by the oaths of Basil Hayden, Jr., and Luke Mudd, two of the subscribing witnesses thereto, and ordered to be certified. And at a county court held for the said County the third day of ? 1794. The same was exhibited in court and ordered to be recorded, on oath of Mildred Hayden, Executrix
Hilton, Executor, therein named who made oath and executed and acknowledged bond as the law directs, a certificate is granted them for obtaining probate thereof in due form.
Categories: Old Wills