1810s

The estate of Ann Williamson.

Documents in the 1822 estate files of Ann Williamson of Nash (now Wilson) County include several references to the sale or “hier” of enslaved people. Williamson was the widow of Joseph Williamson, and Bartley Deans was her executor.

Williamson had executed a will in 1807, fifteen years before her death. She listed three enslaved people — women named Pat and Rachel and a boy named Arch.

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A partial inventory in Williamson’s estate records also lists Arch, Rachel and Pat. Rachel and Pat are listed together at one place in documents and may have been mother and daughter. (Note that, as she was only ten years old in 1822, the Pat in in Williamson’s estate could not have been the Pat in her will.)

ann-w-12-1821-inventory

Here, record of the sale of “Negro gal Pat” to Eatman Flowers for $353.88; the hire of Arch, first to Jesse Sillivant, then to Thomas Williamson; and the hire of Rachel to Ford Taylor. These three were hired out repeatedly.

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A receipt for partial proceeds from the sale of Jack to John Watson, executor of Luke Collins:

ann-w-2

Estate of Ann Williamson (1822), North Carolina Wills and Estates, 1665-1998 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

 

 

Samuel Farmer Sr.’s negroes.

In the name of God Amen, I Samuel Farmer of the County of Edgecomb & State of North Carolina, being low and weak in body, but of perfect sound mind and disposing memory, do make and ordain this to be my last Will and Testament in manner and form following —

First of all I give and recommend my soul into the Hands of Almighty God who gave it, hoping to receive the same again at the great day of resurrection, and my body I recommend to the earth to be buried in a decent Christian burial at the discretion of my Executor, and as touching such worldly estate wherewith it hath pleased God to bless me in this life, I give and dispose of the same in the following manner to witt.

Item. I Give and bequeath unto my son Samuel one negroe boy named John, and four Hundred dollars to him and his Heirs forever

Item. I Give and bequeath unto my daughter Rhoda Sharp one negroe girl named Chany to her and her Heirs forever

Item. I Give and bequeath unto my son Moses one negroe girl named Nan to him and him Heirs forever. Also I give him one tract of land on the Miry Swamp, known by the name of the Parish place to him and his heirs forever

Item. I Give and bequeath unto my Daughter Anna Sharp one negroe girl named Elva to her and her Heirs forever

Item. I Give and bequeath unto my son Isaac one negroe boy named Brittain to her and her Heirs forever. Also I give him the land and plantation whereon I now live after his Mothers Death

Item.I lend to my beloved wife Jerusa, during her natural life, the Land and plantation whereon I now live, also all my negroes not heretofore bequeathed.

Item. The rest of my property I leave to be divided between my wife and all my children after my paying all my Just debts and the negroes lent to my wife I leave to be equally divided between all my children after her death

I do hereby nominate and appoint my sons Samuel and Moses Executors to this my last will and testament, ratifying this and no other to be my Last Will and Testament; in Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 21st day of March 1814.   /s/ Samuel Farmer

Signed sealed and acknowledged in the presence of J. Farmer, Isaac Farmer

——

Samuel Farmer’s home plantation was on Hominy Swamp in what is now Wilson County. (In fact, the waterway runs through the city from northwest to southwest.) His will entered probate in August Term 1817 of Edgecombe County’s probate court.

North Carolina Wills and Estates, 1665-1998 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

The last will and testament of Isham Evans.

“In the name of God Amen I Isham Evans of the County & State [of Wayne County, North Carolina] aforesaid being In a low State of Health but of a sound & perfect mind & memory & noing that its appointed onst for man to die I resine my body up into the hands of that God that made it and having also Called to mind my worldly Estate to dispose of as folows”

To beloved wife Marah Evans — “one Negro girl by the name of Nance, to her her natural life or widowhood.”

To “Jacob Evans son of Joel Evans de’t” — “three Negros, one man by the name of Gorge, one Woman by the Name Cate, one boy named Dick & there increas”

To Sally Evans, daughter of Joel Evans, deceased — “one Negro girl by the name of Nance after the death or widowhood of my wife”

To Prissila Evans — lend “one Negro girl by the Name of Gine to her her natural live or widowhood & after that I give the said Negro girl gine to to Polly Evans daughter of Joel Evans”

——

Isham Evans signed his will on 16 January 1815, and his executors filed it in May Court 1815. Evans lived in the Black Creek area in what is now Wilson County.

Original will available at North Carolina Wills and Estates, 1665-1998 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

Tartts’ negroes, pt. 1.

Jonathan Tartt of Edgecombe County wrote out his will on February 3, 1789; it was probated May 5 of the same year. Along with personal property and many thousands of acres of lands along Toisnot and White Oak Swamps (in what would become Wilson County), Tartt left:

  • To wife Catherine, two Negro boys, Frank and Anthony; a Negro man Lin for 10 years and “afterwards Lin shall be a free man and shall have his cornfield, orchard, and house now known by the name of his as his property;” and, with son James Tartt and daughter Martha Eason, stock, furniture, money and two Negroes Brister and Sharp
  • To son Elnathan Tartt, one Negro man Simon and one girl Tamer outright; two Negro men Gideon and Jo for six years; and Negroes Jack, Venus, John, and Sal for 10 years, then to be divided equally between Elnathan Tartt, son James Tartt, and grandchildren Enos and Sarah Tartt
  • To son James Tartt, Negro boys Abram and Briant, plus the share in Jack, Venus, John and Sal above
  • To daughter Elizabeth Walton,  one Negro woman Pen “and her increase”
  • To daughter Martha Eason, one Negro woman Cloe and her child Charity
  • To grandson Enos Tartt, one Negro man Gideon, plus the share in Jack, Venus, John and Sal above
  • To granddaughter Sarah Tartt (orphan of Jonathan Junior), one Negro Joe, plus the share in Jack, Venus, John and Sal above

——

Jonathan Tartt’s son Elnathan Tartt, also of Edgecombe County, made out his will on Christmas Eve 1795. He left land and a dwelling house along White Oak Swamp, and:

  • To wife Obedience, a Negro woman named Cloe; a Negro man named Ellis; also, until son James Tart comes of age, negro women Fillis, Tamer and Sal
  • “It is my Will and desire that my negroes still continue at their respective Plantations for the purpose of keeping up their farms and raising stock as heretofore and continue their stocks of any kind”
  • To son James Tartt, a negro man named Simon
  • To son Thomas Tart, a negro man named Davey
  • To daughter Pennina Tart, a negro man named Sam
  • To daughter Polly, a negro boy named Bryant
  • “Whereas my father Jonathan Tart in his last will and testament left four Negros viz Jack, Venus, John and Sarah, to be divided equally between myself, James Tart, Enos and Sally Tart for a term of years Viz Ten years. My will and desire is that my part of said negroes continue at the plantation where they now live and if said negroes are sold then my Executors may purchase them at such prices as they think proper, and if Jack or Venus should fall to my part, or be purchased by my Executors, my will is that they may have choice to live with which of my two sons they please after my son Thomas comes of Age”; also that negro Tom have his choice of which son to live with
  • To four children Penninah, Polly, James and Thomas Tart four negroes and their increase (if any) Vizs Baccus, Fillis, Tamer and Sal as soon as they arrive at age or marry to be divided equally among them
  • “if my Executors purchase a negroe Boy Tom and a negroe girl Sarah that they be equally divided between the four children as they may become of age or marry”

——

Jonathan Tartt’s widow Catherine Jarrell Tartt Peelle made out her will on 17 June 1812. It was recorded in Edgecombe County in November 1814 and included these provisions:

  • To my grandson Enos Tartt “Negro man named Antony
  • “… my two Negro men nam’d Brister and Frank be at liberty to chuse whom they may be willing to live with and that they may be valued by three good men whom the court of Edgcombe shall appoint for that purpose and those men whom they chuse to live with to pay up the full valuation. If they see cause otherwise, the said Negroes shall be hired out annually as long as they live, to such persons as they may be willing to live with.”
  • “my two Negro men Dempsey and Sam shall be valued by three good men whom the court of Edgcombe shall appoint and that my Grandson Enos Tartt shall take the said Negroes at the valuation and the money arising from the sd. Negroes to be equally divided between my granddaughter Catherine Spates and grandson Elnath Eason”
  • “my old Negro woman named Pen be a liberty to chuse whom she is willing to live with and if it is thought that she is not able to support herself by her labor that she shall be suporte out of my Estate”
  • “give to the said old Negro [Pen] my weaving Lume & guard also the Wheale and cards she has genurely us’d in my serviss”
  • “… unto my nephew John Garrell one Negro woman named Ginney
  • “my stock of every kind whatsoever be sold at six months credit and my farming tools also my blacksmith tools and the money except the legece left to my sister Pearce and the support for Negro Pen to be taken out and the ballance to and with the money that my Negro Frank & Brister shall sell or hire for …”

——

Some observations:

  • According to this (I have not seen the original), the 1769 Dobbs County tax list discloses the names of Jonathan Tartt’s slaves — Rorah, Sam, Jack, Lin, Little Sam, Jin, Pen, and Venus. Twenty years later, in Edgecombe, he retained possession of Jack, Lin, Pen and Venus. (Or, at least, enslaved people with those same names.) Jonathan Tartt was born in perhaps Surry or Isle of Wight County, Virginia, and migrated to Northampton and Bertie Counties, North Carolina before pushing further south into Dobbs County. His land there was on either side of the Neuse River in what is now Wayne County. Thus, men and women that he enslaved in Edgecombe (later Wilson) had traveled with him as he settled across the east-central Coastal Plain.
  • Elnathan Tartt disposed of two enslaved people inherited from his father, Simon and Tamer.
  • Several of the enslaved people disposed of in Catherine Peelle’s will seem to have been inherited from her husband Jonathan Tartt, including Anthony, Frank, Brister and Pen.

Philis can choose whom she will live with.

In the name of God Amen

I Jethro Harrison of the County of Nash & State of North Carolina on this 20th Day of April in the year of our Lord 1811, do Make and ordaine Publish & Declare this to be my Last Will and Testement In manner and form following Viz.

Item  I give unto my son William Harrison five Hundred acers of land that I bought of William & Jethro Philips, a line to be Run East and West so as to leave that Number of acers North of my Manner Plantation; one Negro Man namd Dick and one Brandey Still to him and his heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my son Jethro Harrison the Land and Plantation whereon I Now live as far as the south pronge of the Spring Branch one negro woman namd Grace and one Brandey Still that is set up on the lands one horse bridle and sadle two cows three Ewes and two Lambs two sows and piggs one fetheur Beed and furniture and the Boefutt that is in the house to him and his heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my son Dempsey Harrison the Lands that I Bought of John Sanders and all the Remainder of my Land not as yet given a Line to be Run up the Afore sd. Spring Branch to my Back Line and one negro man namd Dave and my Blacksmith tools to him and his heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my Daughter Nancy Horn one Negro Boy that she has in her procession namd Ben and one Negro woman namd Hannah to hur and hur heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my Daughter Polly Grice one Negro boy that she has in her possession namd Hardey and one Negro woman namd Ginney to hur and hur heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my Daughter Temperance Holden one Negro girl that she has in her Possession namd Silvea and one negro boy namd Washington to hur and hur heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my Daughter Elizebeth Harrison one Negro Woman namd Seleth and one Negro Boy named Jacob, two cows & calves, three ewes and lambs, one bed and furniture to her and her heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my Daughter Milbreay Harrison one Negro woman namd Jane and one Negro man namd Jack three ewes and lambs two cows and calves one beed and furniture to her and her heirs forever.

Item  I give unto my Two Grandsons James & Jethro Ricks sons of my Daughter Morning Ricks Dsd. Fiftey Dollars each to be all that I now give them or hereafter them and their heirs forever.

I likewise give unto my two daughters Elizebeth and Milbreay one Negro girl named Sarah to be divided Equaly among them.

My will is that my old Negro Woman named Philis be at Liberty to choose which of my children she will live with and if it is thought she is not able to Work sufficient to maintain her self that the one she chuseth to live with shall be allowed a sum of money out of my estate for the support of sd. negro during her Life time.

My will and desire further is that after my Just Debts and Leguces be paid that the Remainder of my property be Equley divided among all my Children then Living.

My will further is that Henry Atkins William Horn and William Moore or any Two of them be Appinted to attend the sale of my property and bid of such of my property as they may think proper for my two daughters that is underage Elizabeth & Milbray Harrison & not to be liable to any loss for any stock or any other article that they may bid of for sd. daughters and I do hereby constitute ordain and appoint my son William Harrison Charles Coleman and William White my whole and sole Executors of this my Last Will and Testament Ratifying this and no other to be my last Will and Testament in Wintness Whereof Thence I have herunto set my hand and seal the Day and Date Above Writing. /s/ Jethro Harrison {seal}

Signed Sealed and delivered by the Sd. Jethro Harrison the Testator in the Presence of us who were Presence at the Time of Sealing & Delivery of Same    Hardy Horn, Willis (X) Morriss, Roxanne (X) Brantley

——

Jethro Harrison’s land was in what is now Wilson County.

North Carolina, Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 [database on-line], Ancestry.com.

The last will and testament of Ephraim Watson.

In the Name of God amen I Ephraim Watson of the County of Johnston in the State of North Carolina being of sound and perfect mind and memory thanks be to almighty God for the same and calling to mind the mortality of my body and the uncertainty of this transitory life

Do make and ordain this my last Will and testament in manner and form following that is to say

I lend to my beloved wife Nanny Watson two hundred and thirty Acres of Land including the plantation whereon I now live bounded by James Watsons, Jesse Sillevents, Jacob Barnes’s and Stephen Watson’s lines and also by the fence of the plantation where I formerly lived which runs a North and South course from the Swamp to the Myrtle Branch continues the course to during her natural life or widowhood and at her second marriage or decease I give the said land and premises unto my son Amos Watson.

I also lend to said wife one Mare with foal the colt I give to to my son Amos if it comes living also two Cows and one feather bed and furniture also one Negro Woman named Becky and one Negro boy named Bobb ten year old hogs four head of sheep also all my household and kitchen furniture, except three feather beds with their furniture, and all my Plantation Tools, which property I lend during the natural life of my sd wife or widow hood as aforesaid and at her decease or marriage I give the above mentioned Negros to my Daughter Patsey and the remainder of the above mentioned property I give to be Equally divided between my Daughter Beady and my son Jesse and my son Amos and my Daughter Patsey

Item I give to my son Stephen Watson one Negro girl named Pheribey and one shot gun

Item I give to my Daughter Priscilia Sillivent one Negro girl named Sarah

Item I give to my Daughter Beady Watson one Negro boy named Jerry one three years old heifer and two head of sheep one feather Bed and furniture

Item I give to my son Jesse Watson one Negro Woman named Hannah my will is that the first living child said Hannah has should belong to my son Amos Watson I also give to my said son Jesse one hundred and fifty three Acres of including the old plantation where I formerly lived it being the remainder of my land one two year old colt one three year old heifer of a red colour no horns two head of sheep and one sow and pigs and one feather Bed and furniture

Item I give to my son Amos Watson one four year old heifer and one yearling two head of sheep one feather Bed and furniture one sow and Pigs

Item I give to my Daughter Patsey Watson one Cow one three year old Heifer and one two year old steer

Item I give to my grand son Willis Watson twenty dollars and one cow which Stephen Watson has now in stock

Item I leave one Bay Horse to be sold to the highest bidder and the value thereof to be equally Divided amongs all my living Children

Item I give to my two sons Jesse and Amos one pair of Mill Stones

And all the remainder of my property which I have not above mentioned I Desire should be Equally divided amongst all my Children that is living at this time

And I do hereby Constitute and appoint my trusty friends Henry Sasser and my Son Stephen Watson Executors to this my last Will and Testament hereby revoking disanuling and making voyed all former Wills and requests by me made and declaring this only to be my last will and testament in witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 25th day of December in the year of our Lord 1815      Ephraim (his mark “G”) Watson {Seal}

Signed Sealed in presents of us James (X) Watson, Amos Watson, Tobias (X) Watson

——

Ephraim Watson’s land was in what is now southwestern Wilson County.

North Carolina, Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 [database on-line], Ancestry.com.