Family Sketch of Moses Morris, Who Died c1803, Amelia County, Virginia

A couple of days ago, I shared the will of Moses Morris. Here it is again, with further details about his children and grandchildren:

Will of Moses Morris
Amelia County, Virginia WB 6:299-300
Source: FamilySearch

In the name of God I Moses Morris of Amelia County being in good health and sound mind and memory as at other times and knowing the frailty of this mortal life and that it is appointed for all mankind once to die, Therefore I make this my last will and testament giving and bequeathing in the manner and form as followeth:

Item. I give to my son Zachariah Morris one bed and furniture which he has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate to him and his heirs forever.
Item. I – to my son Moses Morris one bed and furniture which he has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate during his life and at his death I give it to his children to them and their heirs forever.
Item. I leave to my son Isaac Morris one feather bed and furniture and one twelfth part of my estate to him and the heirs of his body but if he should die without heirs full heir of his body his legacy to return to the surviving legatees.
Item I give to my son (Walter?) Morris six shillings to be paid to him by my executors.
Item. I leave to my son William Morris one feather bed furniture and one twelfth part of my estate to him and the heirs of his body, but if he should die without lawful heir of his body his legacy to return to the surviving legatees.
Item. I give to my three grand children Rhoda Franklin Molly Claybrook and Sally Claybrook one twelfth part of my estate to be equally divided between them but if either of the children should die without an heir their parts to return to their surviving sisters.
Item. I give to my three grand children William Wingo, Sally Wingoe and Molly Wingoe one twelfth part of my estate to be equally divided between them, but if either of three children should die without heirs their parts to return to the surviving brother or sister.
Item. I give to my six Grandchildren Asenath Morris, Dubucy Morris, Nancy Morris, Jenny Morris, Luellen Morriss and Catril Morris one bed and furniture which their mother Betsy Morriss has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate for their support to be equally divided between them, but if either of the six children should die without an heir their parts to return to the surviving sisters and brothers.
Item. I leave to my grand daughter Susannah Burton one trunk, one feather bed and furniture which her father Samuel Burton has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate, all which I leave in the care and hands of my executors till she shall become of age or married, but if she should die without lawful heir of her body the legacy to return to the surviving legatees
Item. I give to my daughter Mary H. Whitworth one feather bed and furniture which she has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate to her and her heirs of her body forever.
Item. I give to my daughter Judith Mays one bed and furniture which she has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate to her and the heirs of her body forever.
Item, I give to my daughter Jenny Hendrick one bed and furniture which she has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate to her and her heirs of her body forever.
Item. I give to my daughter Oney Burton one bed and furniture which she has in possession and one twelfth part of my estate to her and the heirs of her body forever.

And lastly I constitute and appoint my Brother Zachariah Morriss and Claibourne G. Whitworth executors of this my last will and testament. In witness whereof I have set my hand and fix to my seal this twelfth day of June, One thousand eight hundred and two.

Witnesses: Allen Jeters, Thomas Booth, Rudophil Jeter, Isaac Morris

There is a lot to be learned about Moses Morris from his will. First, I am continuing with my (for now) belief that Catherine Waters, daughter of James Waters who died in 1753, was the wife of Moses Morris. There is no evidence so far found to suggest that she wasn’t while, at the same time, there are clues she was.

First, there weren’t many Morrises born c1720s who Catherine might have married. She is called Catherine Morris in her father’s 1753 will, so she was alive and married at that time.

This Moses Morris was born in the 1720s and of the right age to be the husband of Catherine, whose birth was likely in the later 1720s. In addition, Moses appears to be the eldest son of Isaac Morris, who left a will probated in Amelia County on 18 May 1750. The children seem to be listed in birth order and his brothers might have been too young to marry Catherine.

Second, Moses Morris had a grandchild named Rhoda Franklin and, as marriage records show, he also had a daughter named Rhoda. Remember, Rhoda isn’t the most popular of girls’ names in this era and the ones I’ve found have all been related.

Here is my tentative construction of the family of Moses Morris and his presumed wife, Catherine Waters. Birth order is uncertain, but I am assuming his sons were named in birth order and that Moses’s children married in the 18-24 year old range:

1. Zachariah, born c1755; died after 1804, when he was sued by siblings over his handling of his father’s estate.
2. Mary H., born c1758; married Claiborne Gouge Whitworth. He was born c1755 and died before June 1805. He was co-executor of Moses’s will along with Mary’s brother, Zachariah. A lawsuit later brought by Moses’s heirs identified Claiborne as the husband of Mary Morris.
2. Moses, born 1761
3. Isaac, born c1763; died before 1815; based on a Chancery Court lawsuit by heirs of his siblings, he had no heirs.
4. Walter, born c1765; married Elizabeth Morris, 16 November 1788, Amelia County, Virginia
5. William, born c1767
6. Jenny, born c1768; married Barnard Hendrick, 21 December 1786, Amelia County, Virginia
7. Oney, born c1770; married William Burton, 16 November 1788, Amelia County, Virginia
8. Judith, born c1771; married Garner/Gardiner Mays, 5 February 1789, Amelia County, Virginia
9. Son, born c1773; died before 12 June 1802; married Betsey, who survived him and is mentioned in his father’s will, c1790. (Could this be John Morris, who married Elizabeth Hudson, 5 July 1791, Amelia County, VA?) Children were Asenath, Dubucy, Nancy, Jenny, Lewellyn and (Catril?) Morris, named in Moses’s will.
10. Rhoda, born c1776, died before the 1804 estate distribution when Jesse Franklin signed for the share, probably Amelia County, Virginia; married (1) Mr. Claybrook (2) Jesse Franklin, 1 May 1802, Amelia County, Virginia. Children were Molly Claybrook, Sally Claybrook and Rhoda Franklin, named in Moses’s will.
11. Daughter, born c1778; died before 12 June 1802, probably Amelia County, Virginia; married (1) Mr. Wingo. Her children included William, Sally and (V.M.?) Mr. Wingo apparently died before 1804, as William Burton was their next friend in court.
12. Susan, born c1782; predeceased her father; married Samuel Burton, cDecember 1800, Amelia County, Virginia. Her daughter, Susannah Burton is in Moses’s will.

Little seems to be online, genealogically speaking, about this family, so I will devote one more post to identifying them.

 

 

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