The last will and testament of Ira Howard.

Ira Howard made out his will on 24 August 1906.

  • to son James Howard, a 42 1/2-acre tract known as the “Joe Howard tract” and a 28 1/2-acre tract called the “Ivey Ivens tract”;
  • to son William Howard, the 50-acre “home place” tract and the 22 1/2-acre “Cally Taylor lands”;

  • to Manuel Batchelor, Silver Lee Batchelor and Roxie Ann Batchelor, children of Mahala Batchelor (once they reached age 21), the 50-acre “Jim Taylor lands,” the 22-acre “Peter High lands,” and the 22-acre “Cally Taylor lands,” to be equally divided;

  • William Howard was to serve as guardian for the Batchelor children;
  • all personal property, including farm animals, farm implements, furniture, and crops was to be sold to pay debts, with the remainder divided equally between sons James and William Howard (with William to receive an extra $150 to make up for the $150 James owed their father);

  • and son William Howard was appointed executor.


In the 1870 census of Taylors township, Wilson County: farmer Delus [Zealous] Howard, 35, wife Rodah, 33, and children Mary, 16, Ira, 13, George, 11, Delus, 8, Gibbs, 6, Jesse, 3, and Doctor, 1.

On 26 December 1877, Orry [Ira] Howard, 22, married Harriet Wilkins, 22, in Wilson County.

In the 1880 census of Jackson township, Nash County, N.C.: farmer Ira Howard, 22; wife Harriet, 21; son James E., 1; servant Merica Farmer, 8; plus brother George Howard, 21.

In the 1900 census of Taylor township, Wilson County: farmer Ira Howard, 45; wife Harette, 44; and son William, 15; also James Howard, 20, and wife Cisco, 20.

On 15 November 1895, Willie Lucas, 23, of Nash County, son of John Kalis and Frances Lucas, married Sylvia Howard, 21, of Nash County, daughter of Ira Howard and Mahala Batchelor, in Taylor township, Wilson County.

William Howard died 18 January 1918 in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 30 June 1892 in Wilson County to Ira Howard and Harriett Wilkins; was married; and worked as a farmer. Lula Howard of Wilson was informant.

James Howard died 18 November 1923 at the “Col. Hospital” in Wilson. Per his death certificate, he was born 26 October 1875 in Wilson County to Ora Howard and Harriet Wilkins; was married to Sisco Howard; and was a tenant farmer for J.R. Brantley.

Manuel Howard died 7 December 1930 in Rocky Mount, Nash County, N.C. Per his death certificate, he was perhaps 50 years old; was born in Wilson to Ara Howard and Lizzie Batchelor; was a farmer; and was married. Sylvie Lucas, Wilson, was informant.

Will Book 4, page 112, Office of Clerk of Superior Court, Wilson County Courthouse, Wilson


  1. My GreatGreatGrandfather is Ira Howard.
    My Great Grandfather is William Ira Howard.
    William’s wife was Lula Howard, is My GreatGrandmother.
    I know where they are buried in case there are others out there that are related to them.
    To see the will of my GGGrandfather is amazing!
    They are buried at 5402 Brewer Ct.
    Wilson NC 27896 at the Lucas Corporation Cemetery, formally known as the Howard family burial ground.
    They owned a lot of land.
    It would be interesting to know how much of it still remains in the family. really works!

  2. Silvia Batchelor wasn’t born until 1900.
    Willie Lucas was born 1891 so there are some inaccuracies there.
    Silvia was 12 and Willie Lucas was 21 when the came to the “Home Land of William I. Howard, who was her cousin.
    Ira Howard had a brother Named Jesse Howard.
    He was the Father of Silvia Batchelor, Roxy Ann Batchelor and Manual Batchelor.

    Ira had 2 sons, William Ira Howard ( my GreatGrandFather anfmd James Howard, My GreatGrand Uncle.
    Those were his only Children.
    Some claimed on death certificates to be his children because they wanted access to claim the land and the wealth that came with the lineage.

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