Estate of Billington Williams, Amelia Co., VA 1786: Releasing Robin, Jenny, Margret & Amy

From the Virginia Chancery Court records I found a lawsuit over the estate of Billington Williams, who died in 1786 in Amelia County, Virginia.

The court papers named Catherine as the widow of Billington Williams and said he left five children, Billington Jr. and daughters Jean Cabaniss, Anne, Mary and Elizabeth.

Here are two pages from the slim packet filed with the Chancery Court justices which contain family information.

Case 1791-007, Pages 4-5

To the worshipful the Justices of Amelia County Court sitting in chancery, humbly complaining, sheweth unto your Worships your Oratrix Catherine Williams widow and relict of Billington Williams, late of the county deceased, that the said billington Williams in his life time being seized of a tract of land, lying and being in this count, & possessed of several Slaves, & a considerable personal Estate, made his last will & testament in writing, & thereby appointed William Parham & John Elliiott executors of the same; the said Wm Parham in consequence thereof & obtaining probate & hath taken upon him the ?) deposition of the said Will, as by the same recorded in this worshipful Court will fully appear, & a copy of which hereto annexed in prayer to be taken as part of this bill.

That the said Testator having devised unto your Oratrix such a small proportioin of his said Estate, as she thought inadequate to her support & maintenance & the circumstances of the Estate (re-?) agreeable to law, all benefit which she might claim by virtue of any devise under the said Will, in order to entitle her to such share & proportion of the same as pointed out by the Act of Assembly in that case made & provided.

Your Oratrix sheweth that the said Testator left an only son & heir at law, Billington Williams to whom the land of the said Testator now descends, who, with the same Wm Parham & Jas Elliott the Executors, your Oratrix prays may be made defendants to this her bill of complaint & compelled to answer the same.

Your Oratrix further sheweth that the said Testator left five children, to wit the aforesaid Billington, Jean now intermarried with Henry Cabaniss, Ane, Mary, & Elizabeth

Your Oratrix sheweth that the estate of the said Decedent consisted of a tract of land, lying & being in the County upon. . . . containing by estimation 200acres be the same more or less; 4 negro slaves named Robin, Venus, Margret & Amy & personal Estate consisting of Horses, Cattle, Sheep, Pigs, Household furniture of different kinds, & sundry other Articles.

And whereas your Oratrix hath applied in a friendly manner to the said Defendants for her proportion of the said Estate agreable to law, who urge that they cannot with propriety, have the same allotted without the Decree of the Worshipful Court to give sanction to their proceedings, & justify the one as heir, & the others as Executors, to the End therefore that the said Defendants may on their corporal Oath full true & perfect answer make to all and singular the Premises, as fully as if the same were here repeated and interrogated, & more Especially that they may set forth and discover what the Estate of the said Testator consisted of, at the time of his death; the quantity of Land, & number of Slaves, & to decree unto your Oratrix her proportion according to law, & fit and proper Persons to be assigned for that purpose & such other & further releif in the Premises as may be agreable to Equity May it please your Worships to grant unto your Oratrix  . . .Wm (Cowan?)

This case has been digitized and can be found on the Virginia Memory: Chancery Records Index, Amelia County Case 1791-007.


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