Friday, April 28, 2017

From the Probate Files: Thomas Mathews - Northampton, North Carolina, 1770

In an earlier post we saw that Martha Stapp's husband Thomas Matthews received one shilling in her father's Joshua's 1759 will and noted that her only other mention in surviving records is in Thomas's will which presented in the Northampton County court in March of 1770.

I haven't found a birth date for this maternal sixth great grandfather, but since their first child was born about 1739 it's likely to have been in or before 1720, so he must have been in his 40s when he put his mark on his will on April 20, 1761. At that time his three sons (James, Claiborne* and Lawrence) were under age so he left everything to Martha as long as she didn't remarry. If she died or took a second husband all his property was to go to his oldest son, if he died then to my ancestor, and finally in case both his older sons were dead, to his youngest son Lawrence.

["North Carolina Probate Records, 1735-1970," images, FamilySearch ( : 21 May 2014), Northampton > image 103 of 273;
county courthouses, North Carolina.]

                                      Thomas Matthews Will
In the name of God amen, I Thomas Matthews of the County of North
ampton, being in a low State of Health, but of sound & perfect sense
& memory, Do hereby this my last Will & Testament, revoking 
all former wills by me heretofore made.
Impremis I give my Soul to almighty God, its Creator, hoping thru the mediation
                of my Saviour Jesus Christ to Receive full & ardent Redemption 
                all my sins, my body I Desire to be decently interred at the Discre
                tion of my Execr hereafter appointed.
Item         I give & bequeath unto my loving wife Martha Mathews,
                while she Continues sole & my widow, all my Estate but in Case
                my wife shall die or marry, I give my land unto my son James
                Matthews ^his heirs & assigns. In case my son James Mathews^
                should die under age, I give my Land to my son Chil
                borne Mathews, & his heirs forever. In case my Son Chilborne
               should die under age, I give my land to my son Lawrence Mat
               thews & his heirs forever.
I Constitute & appoint my wife Martha Matthews ^to be^ , Exer of this my last
                will & testament, & I desire all my just debts to be paid by my Exer, In
                witness thereof I have set my hand & seal this 20th day of April 1761.
                Signed Sealed & Delivered           Thomas [his | mark] Matthews & seal
                as his last will & testament in presence of
                Teste Thos Short,  George Raglund.                 

Even though Thomas lived another nine years after drawing up this will, he apparently saw no need to make another and this was the one recorded in 1770.

["North Carolina Probate Records, 1735-1970," images, FamilySearch ( : 21 May 2014), Northampton > image 104 of 273;
county courthouses, North Carolina.]

Northampton County ?? March Ct 1770.
This will of Thomas Matthews deceased was proved by the 
Oath of Thomas Short Esq. and ordered to be Certified &
                                                Teste Willis Jones Cct.

Northampton County has extensive probate records but somehow Thomas Matthews' original will doesn't seem to have survived nor is there any further probate records that I could find.

*Claiborne is my direct ancestor. His great great granddaughter is Sarah M. Matthews, the wife of George W. Slater.

© 2017 Copyright, Christine Manczuk, All Rights Reserved.

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