Will of Abraham Estes, Mercer County, KY, 1788

Releasing Matt, Juda, Phillis, Jacob, Nearo, Murrees?, Sam, David, Wagon?, Anthony, Moses, Nancy, Milly, Peter, Walker, Charles, Jacob, Sook and Child.

Abraham Estes was born c1725 and migrated westward from King and Queen County, Virginia to Kentucky, where he did during the summer of 1788.

His will was written on 23 May 1788 and probated on 23 September 1788 in Mercer County, Kentucky. (Will Book 1:17-21) Source: FamilySearch.

In the name of God Amen. The twenty third day
of May One thousand seven hundred and eighty eight
I Abraham Estes of the County of Mercer and district of
Kentucky being sick and weak in body, but of sound mind
and memory thanks to god for it: And calling to mind the
mortality of my body and knowing that it is appointed unto
men once to die do make and ordain this my last will
and Testament (Viz) Principally and first of all I give
and recommend my Soul into the hands of god that gave
it, and my body I commit to the earth to be burried in
a Christian like and decent manner at the discretion
of my Executors, nothing doubting but at the general
resurrection, I shall receive the same again by the
mighty power of god, 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 manner and form follow
inn. Item. I give and bequeath to my well beloved
wife Kesiah four Negroes to wit, Matt, Juda, Phillis, and
Jacob, also one feather bed and furniture also one horse
and Saddle together with all my pewter except two
dishes and six plates which I shall give to my Son
Henry, also the whole of my kitchen furniture except one
pot and half a dozen knives and forks, which I shall
also give my son Henry also the whole of my tools and plantation
Utensils, except three new broad hoes also intended for my
son Henry. also one waggon and (gears?) to be freely enjoyed
and possessed by her during her natural life except as much
of it as I shall hereafter bequeath to my two Youngest
children. Item. I give and bequeath to my Daughter Lucey

Lucey one negroe boy named nearo, also one feather
bed and furniture, also one horse and saddle together
with ten dishes, three plates and (1/2?) Dozn knives and forks &
pot also two Cows and Calves which she has now in possession
to be freely enjoyed and possessed by her and her Heirs forever
Item. I lend to my daughter Rachel one negroe girl
named (Murrees?) and her increase to be freely enjoyed
and possessed by her and the lawful heirs of her body forever
also one feather bed and furniture one horse and saddle
two Cows and Calves two dishes three plates & 1/2 dozn
knives and forks which she now has in possession to be
freely enjoyed and possessed by her and her Heirs forever.
Item. I give and bequeath to my daughter Betty Ward
one negroe fellow named Sam, also one feather bed and
furniture one horse and Saddle two cows and calves
two dishes, three plates and dutch oven & 1/2 Dozn knives
and forks which she has already in possession to be freely
enjoyed and possessed by her and her heirs forever, and
as the fellow I give her is of less value than those given to
my other daughters it is my desire after the decease of
my wife that her portition shall be made equal to her
other sisters.—
Item. I give to my Daughter Jemimah one negroe boy
named David to be freely enjoyed and possessed by her
and the lawful heirs of her body forever, I also give
and bequeath to her one feather bed and furniture, one
Horse and Saddle, two Cows and Calves two dishes & three
plates & 1/2 dozn knives and forks which she now has in
possession to be freely enjoyed and possessed by her and
her heirs forever. —
Item. I Lend to my son Henry two negroes to wit, (Wagon?)
and Anthony to be freely enjoyed and possessed by him
and the Lawful heirs of his body begotten, I also give and
bequeath to him one feather bed and furniture, one
Horse and Saddle now in possession two Cows and Calves

 two dishes and six plates one pot and 1/2 Dozn knives and forks
and three broad hoes to be freely enjoyed and possessed by him, & his heirs forever. — but if he dies without an heir, then this estate
is to return to be equally divided among all my Children.—
Item. I Lend to my daughter Frankey two negroes, to wit,
Moses and Nancy to be freely enjoyed and possessed by her
(whosoever she may marry or come of age) and the lawful
Heirs of her body forever, and if she dies without a lawful
Heir of her body, then her portion is to return to my estate
and to be divided among all my children that are then
surviving equally. I also bequeath to her one choice horse
out of my stock and Saddle, two Cows and Calves, one feather
bed and furniture, one pot, two dishes & six plates and 1/2 Dozn
knives and forks to be freely enjoyed and possessed by her
as aforesaid. –

Item. I lend to my Son Joel two negroes to wit, Matt & Milly
also one good hors and Saddle, one feather bed & furniture
two cows and Calves, two dishes and six plates, one pot and
1/2 Dozn knives and forks to be freely enjoyed and possessed by
him whenever he shall come of age and the Lawful heirs
of his body, but if he shall die without an heir then the
estate to return to my family and be equally divided
among all my Children then surviving. —
Item. I Leave to my wife in order to for Sale, to purchase
land, pay Debts, & Difray the necessary the necessary (sic)
Expenses of the family Seven Negroes & Their Increase
to wit Peter, Walker, charles, Jacob, Juda, philis
(Sook?) & her Child or so many of Them as she in her
Wisdom shall Judge necessary. & it is my Desire that
the lands that may be so purchased shall at her
Decease & all to my son son (sic) Joel to be freely Enjoyed
& possessed by him as aforesaid. —
it is also my Desire that the tract of land
which I possess on the Waters of green river be

Disposed of at the discretions of my Executors the one
half to be enjoyed by my son Henry the other half to
be Enjoyed by my son Joel —-
lastly – I nominate and appoint William Rice &
my  Wife Kesiah & Robert Childers & Henry Estes to be
to be (sic) my only and sole Executors of this my last will
& Testament, utterly Revoking & makeing null and
Void all other wills Legacies & bequeaths by me before
now named or mentioned ratifying & confirming
this & no other to be my last will & Testament
In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my jand
& seal this day and year above written.—
Sign’d seald & acknowledged in
presence of Abraham Estes (seal)
Joseph Robison
Jos Lawrence
Robert Lawrence
Item. Before this will is signed it is my Desire that
the part of the Estate that my be in the possession
of my wife at her Decease shall be Equally divided
among all my children that shall then be living
after my daughter Jemimah’s portion is made
equal to the other daughters to wit Lucys & Rachels
Witness my hand & seal the day & year above written.
Abraham Estes (seal)
Joseph Robison
Joseph Lawrence
Robt Lawrence

At a Court held for Mercer County at the Courthouse on
tuesday the 23rd day of September 1788
This last will and Testament of Abraham
Estes Deceased was produced in Court & proved by
the oaths of Joseph Robinson Joseph Lawrence &
Robert Lawrence witnesses thereto together with
a memorandum thereto amended is order to be

Teste. Thos. Allen C.C.

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun – Your Genea-Bucket List

Once again, Saturday has rolled around and it’s time for Randy Seaver’s Genea-Musings weekly challenge on Saturday Night Genealogy Fun. This week’s task is to share our genea-bucket list.

I have to say my bucket list isn’t all that long.

  1. I would dearly love to visit the villages of Udol and Vysna Sebastova, Slovakia, ancestral homes of my grandparents, Julia Scerbak and George Kucharik. Although both grandparents were first generation born in the United States, my grandmother returned to Udol when she was about five years old. When she was 17, she returned permanently to New Jersey. As far as I know, none of my grandfather’s family ever returned to Europe after the family migrated to the East Coast.
  2. I would also love to visit Langenlonsheim, Germany, which is the ancestral home of the Stufflebean (Stopplebein) family, although they migrated considerably earlier (1740) than my family.
  3. The biggest item on my research bucket list is to find the burial date and place of my 5X great grandfather, Anders Molin, in Sweden. He didn’t stay put in once place and is last found in 1784 living about 200 miles away from Ystad, Sweden, where he was born. From there, the trail goes cold. Because he was a master mason and had children, I would think it likely that he had a probate record somewhere as his tools alone would have been valued.
  4. I’d like to attend the Federation of Genealogical Societies and National Genealogical Society’s conventions more often. I attended FGS several years ago when it combined with RootsTech, but my one and only NGS conference was in the early 1990s in San Diego, California.
  5. There are a few libraries on my wish list to visit. I’ve been to the New England Historic Genealogical Society in Boston once, back in 1981. I’d like to go back there and dig much deeper into their holdings. I’ve never been to the Allen County Library in Fort Wayne, Indiana and would love to visit there. A third library where I’ve never been is the Mid-Continent Public Library in Independence, Missouri. So many of my husband’s ancestors lived in that area.

That’s about it for my short list!

52 Documents in 52 Weeks #30: Business Partnerships

The end of the Civil War and the beginning of the Industrial Revolution led to many changes in the way business was conducted, with procedures becoming much more formalized.

Towns and counties had required permission to operate certain businesses since the establishment of the American colonies. However, in the late 1800s, notes recorded in court minutes no longer sufficed and legal documents were often created.

Do you have an ancestor who owned and operated a business? If so, check county records to determine whether or not legal documents were filed for that business.

Nance & Nance, Bedford County, Virginia, 1805

These Articles of Agreement made and entered into this 4th day of January 1905 between Albert W. Nance, party of the first part, and Wilbur A. Nance, party of the second part. Whereas, that the foregoing have formed and entered into a Limited Partnership in accordance with the provisions of the Code of Virginia, Sec. 2863 to 2876, both inclusive and Acts Amendatory thereto, and therefore sign and execute the following paper according to law.

  1. The names and places of residence of each partner are as follows:
    Albert W. Nance, Davis Mills, Virginia
    Wilbur A. Nance, Bedford City, Virginia
  2. The firm name under which the partnership is to be conducted is:
    A.W. Nance
    and the general partner is
    Albert W. Nance
    and the special partner is
    Wilbur A. Nance
  3. The amount contributed to the capital by the said special partner, and whether the same is contributed in cash or other property at cash value, and to what extent in each is as follows:
    Wilbur A. Nance, Goods, the cash value of which is $12.50.
  4. The general nature of the business to be transacted is as follows:
    General Mercantile Business
  5. The place at which the business of the partnership is to be conducted is:
    At a Storehouse on the South Side of the Lynchburg and Rocky Mount Turnpike about one mile south West of Davis Mills, Bedford County, Virginia.
  6. The duration of the partnership is
    One year
  7. The said partnership is to be dissolved on the death of the special partner before the expiration of the above-named period.

Given under our hands and seal this 14th day of January 1905
Albert W. Nance (Seal)
Wilbur A. Nance (Seal)

State of Virginia
County of Bedford, To Wit:
This day personally appeared before me Annis Davis a Notary Public for the County aforesaid, in the State of Virginia, Albert W. Nance, who made oath before me in my sai County that he is the general business partner named in the foregoing paper, and that the sum stated to be contributed in the same had been actually contributed in the form set forth therein. and also personally appeared before me in my county aforesaid Wilbur A. Nance, who as well as the said Albert W. Nance, acknowledged the foregoing paper. Given under my hand this 17th day of January, 1905.

My commission expires the 8 day of May, 1908.
Annis Davis, Notary Public

Bedford Circuit Court Clerk’s Office, January 17th, 1905.
this paper signed by Albert W. Nance and Wilbur A. Nance was this day produced in said Office, with the certificate of the oath and acknowledgement annexed and admitted to record as to the said Albert W. Nance and Wilbur A. Nance, the parties signing the same.

Test: John M. Speece, Clerk

The Nance family is a collateral line of my husband’s. Out of curiosity, I looked for them in the census. The back story is that Albert (1866-1939) and Wilbur (1867-1938) were brothers, sons of John F. Nance and wife, Lucy. I’m not sure why this partnership/business was to exist for just one year, but in 1910, Albert was a farmer, with no mention of a mercantile store in the census record, and Wilbur was a contractor in construction.