Skinner

The will and estate of William H. Skinner.

William H. Skinner made out his will in Wilson County on 8 September 1860. Among other things, he left his wife Rebecca Skinner 423 acres “on both sides of the swamp,” “also the following Slaves [blank] & two children Randal & Judy a boy Peter a slave, a boy a slave Jo ….” [The phrasing and lack of punctuation make it difficult to determine how many people are included in this list.]

Skinner also directed “a Negro Girl Matilda & all the balance of my Property … be divided among” several named heirs and, at his wife’s death, all slaves were to be sold and the proceeds divided among his remaining heirs.

On 11 January 1861, executor Thomas H. Skinner held a public sale of William H. Skinner’s personal property. The very last item listed, accounting for more than a quarter of the proceeds brought in, is this unnamed woman. Presumably, she was Matilda:

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In 1866, Peter Skinner and Cherry Sharp registered their cohabitation in Wilson County.

In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farm laborer Peter Skinner, 24; wife Cherry, 24; and children Van, 7, and Fate, 3.

In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: farm laborer Rosa Skinner, 30; and children Randal, 13, farm laborer, and John, 8, Judea, 7, Dennis, 3, and Amos, 3 months.

In the 1880 census of Wilson, Wilson County: on Pettigrew Street, farmer Peter Skinner, 35; wife Sarah, 35; and children Van Buren, 14, and Lafayette, 13.

Will of W.H. Skinner (1860); Estate Records of W.H. Skinner (1860); Wilson County, North Carolina Wills and Probate Records, 1665-1998 [database on-line], http://www.ancestry.com.

The last will and testament of William H. Skinner.

On 8 September 1860, William H. Skinner of Wilson County, “weak in body,” penned a will whose provisions included:

  • to wife Rebecca Skinner, during her natural life or widowhood, “the following Slaves & two children Randel & Judy a boy Peter a slave, a boy a slave Jo,” plus horses, hogs, oxen, cows, a wagon, a cart, furniture, fodder, pork, molasses, flour, coffee, lard, potatoes, peas, etc.
  • “a Negro Girl Matilda & all the balance of my Property [be sold] & the proceeds after paying all my debts to be equally divided between Thomas H. Skinner Mary Ann Harrell Jane Skinner Lisha Skinner Wm Ann Skinner Florence Skinner Della Skinner & Martha Bass’s heirs”
  • after wife Rebecca’s death, “the Slaves which I have lent to my wife be sold & the proceeds equally divided” between the people above.

Skinner apparently died within days, as his will was admitted to probate at October Term 1860 of the county court.

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

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Perhaps: on 31 March 1866, Peter Skinner and Cherry Sharp registered their cohabitation before Wilson County justice of the peace. In the 1870 census of Wilson township, Wilson County: Peter Skinner, 24, wife Cherry, 24, and sons Van, 7, and Fate, 3. In the 1880 census of same: Peter Skinner, 35, wife Sarah B., 35, and sons Van Buran, 14, and Lafayette, 13.