Family Sketch and Will of Joseph Woodruff, Spartanburg County, SC 1817

Today’s post is the promised transcribed will of Joseph Woodruff who died in Spartanburg County, South Carolina between 22 September 1817, the day he wrote his will, and 18 December 1817, the day it was proved and recorded by the court.

Will of Joseph Woodruff, 1817
Spartanburg County, South Carolina WB A:124-125
Source: FamilySearch

In the name of God Amen I Joseph Woodruff of the State of South Carolina & district of Spartanburg being of a perfect mind & memory do make and constitute this my last will & testament. I give my body to be buried in a dicent manner at the discretion of my family & my soul to God that gave it.

I give to my wife Anna Woodruff one negro woman named Luce & one feather bed & furniture to be hers during her natural life & at her deceas the woman Luce with the increase of her body together with the said bed & furniture to be divided equally among the lawful heirs of my body, I wish all the balance of my property to be sold after my decease & desposed of by my executors as follows/Viz./my wife Anna Woodruff to have one hundred dollars during her natural life at her decease to be divided equally among my lawful heirs.

I give to my sons Samuel & Thomas & Caleb Woodruff, togehter with my daughters Polley Allen, Eunice Sparks, Sally Hendrix & Elizabeth Allen, one hundred dollars each.

I give to my daughter Anna Woodruff two hundred & fifty dollards. That is to say if my estate should amount to the above sums after my Just debts are paid Otherwise each one of the aforesaid legatees to receive a dividend in proportion to the sum they are entitled to as above mentioned.

And if there should be a balance yet undivided it to be equally divided between my wife Anna Woodruff my sons Samuel & Thomas & Caleb Woodruff together with my daughters Polly Allen, Eunice Sparks, Sally Hendrix, Elizabeth Allen & Anna Woodruff, & my son Joseph Woodruffs lawful heirs, the part of my son Joseph Woodruff’s Children to remain in the hands of my executors till they think proper to dispose of it for their use. I give to my son Joseph Woodruff two dollars.

I do hereby nominate & appoint John Crocker, & Nathaniel Woodruff Son of Thomas Woodruff as my executors to execute this my last will & Testament heretofore given by me. Signed the 22nd of September in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred & Seventeen.

Witness my land & Seal.
Joseph (his X mark) Woodruff (Seal)

Wm. L Allen
John B. Hendrix
William (his X mark) Jones

Children of Joseph Woodruff and Anna (maiden name said to be Lindsey):

  1. Samuel
  2. Thomas
  3. Caleb
  4. Mary (Polly) , married James Allen
  5. Eunice, married William Sparks
  6. Sarah (Sally) married William Hendrix
  7. Elizabeth, married Caleb Allen
  8. Anna, unmarried when her father wrote his will, unless she married a Woodruff cousin
  9. Joseph

Joseph and Anna Woodruff are not my husband’s direct line, but perhaps this will help another Woodruff researcher. I’m taking a break from the Woodruff posts for a while, as there is a lot of genealogical digging to be done.


Will of Samuel Woodruff, Spartanburg County, SC 1835

As promised, here is the will of Samuel Woodruff who died in Spartanburg County, South Carolina in late 1835 or January 1836:

Will of Samuel Woodruff
Spartanburg County, SC WB C:85-87
Source: FamilySearch

South Carolina
Spartanburg Dist.
In the name of God Amen I Samuel Woodruff Ser of the State and District aforesaid, Being weak of body but of perfect mind and memory, Thanks be to God & Calling to mind the mortality of my body and knowing it is appointed for all men once to die, I make and ordain this my last Will & Testament. That is to say principally and first of all I give and recommend my Soul into the hands of Almighty God that gave it, and my body I recommend to the earth, to be buried in a decent Christian 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 touching such worldly estate wherewith it hath pleased God to bless me with in this life, I give and dispose of the same in the following manner and form –

Item 1st I give and bequeath unto my beloved wife Nancy Woodruff all the tract of Land lying on the Enoree River whereon I now live, it being the same I bought of William Shackelford and bound as follows: Beginning at the mouth of the cool spring branch of said Branch to the head thence along a fence to a Post oak thence a strait Aim with Allen’s Land to a pine corner, Thence S.67W.7.60 to a stump; thnce N.15W.10.60 Red oak, thence S74.W.41 to the Enoree hickory corner, Thence with the river as it meanders to the beginning mouth of the before mentioned cool Spring branch –

Also my will is that I give my wife four nigroes, namely Patience, Lyd, George & Perry and all their increase from the date of this Will – my riding chair, my black walnut cupboard my walnut chest, my big Bible, one bed and furniture her choice, one bedstead (?)and the (old?) blue curtains, and my (wheat?) fan and the said bed, furniture bed stead cord & curtains and all my wearing apparel for my wife to dispose of as she pleases –

Item 2nd Now my will is that all the remainder of my property both real & personal that I may have at my decease, except what I have willed to my wife to be sold and my wife to have five hundred dollars, and the remainder to be disposed of in the following manner.

My daughter Hannah Pilgrim has received two hundred & eighty nine dollars. I will her eleven dollars more to make her three hundred dollars, my son Joseph Woodruff has received two hundred and ninety five dollars and I will him eighty dollars more to make him three hundred & seventy five dollars ; my son Moses Woodruff has reieved three hundred & fifty eight dollars; I will seventeen dollars more to make him three hundred & seventy five dollaars. My will is that the above named children; Viz Hannah, Phebe (sic – Phebe is not mentioned before this spot!), Joseph, and Moses shall have the sums above named to them and no more of my Estate. –The remainder of my Estate after the above legacies are paid out to be equally divided between my six following named children in proportion to what they have already received, as follows, my son Aaron Woodruff has received four hundred & forty dollars, my son Amos Woodruff has received four hundred and five dollars, my son Richard Woodruff has received four hundred dollars, my son Gidion Woodruff has received five hundred and fifty dollars, my daughter Rebecca Bobo has received four hundred and twelve dollars, my son Isaac Woodruff has received four hundred dollars.—

Item 3rd And also my will is that at my wife’s decease that all the property I leave her, both real and personal as her dower, with its increase to be sold and the proceeds to be equally divided between my following named children, that is to say, Aaron Woodruff, Amos Woodruff, Richard Woodruff, Gidion Woodruff, Rebecca Bobo & Isaac Woodruff. I likewise make & ordain my sons Amos & Richard Woodruff my Executors of this my last Will & Testament I do hereby ratify and confirm this and no other to be my last Will & Testament In testimony whereof I have hereunto Signed sealed and acknowledged the same in presence of all the Subscribing Witnesses 11th July in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred & thirty five—

Samuel Woodruff (Seal)
William Jones S.M
Wm Clayton
Ely Cox

South Carolina
Spartanburg Dist.
The foregoing will of Samuel Woodruff Decd. was duly proven in Solemn form by the Evidence of William Jones William Clayton & Ely Cox the Subscribing Witnesses and ordered to be admited of Record.
24th Jany 1836 Jno. Bomar OTD

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun: What to Do with Outdated Family History Media?

Randy Seaver has posed a 21st century challenge for us on this week’s Genea-Musings Saturday Night Genealogy Fun.

So many of us have home movies, videocassettes and, in the case of my family, slides of family fun. What have we done to preserve them? If nothing, do we have a plan in place? If not, the ability to watch home movies and view other obsolete media like slides is quickly passing us by.

Neither my family nor Dave’s apparently ever took any home movies, like the old 8 mm reels, so converting those reels to a more modern technology isn’t anything I’ve ever had to deal with.

However, we had a few videocassettes of family outings. Also, Dave was a huge fan of developing his photos into slides, so we have/had lots of those.

The impetus for us getting the project done was a trip we took to Europe about five years ago. One of our stops was Madrid and we met up with the young lady who was our exchange student in the early 1980s. She lived with us for ten months and was like a daughter to us.

We went through all the slides that Dave had taken when she was here. There were quite a few since we took her to as many places as we could – San Francisco, central California, Las Vegas, San Diego and we even got to Hawaii over spring break.

The solution was simple, as there is a small business near us here in Tucson that converts old media at a reasonable price. We were given both a CD and a flash drive of the conversions so they could also be saved on a computer and in the cloud.

Dave has been a bit lax about finishing the project as he still has a few hundred slides. I’ve reminded him a few times, but I think this would be a good summer project. 🙂

Thanks, Randy, for this week’s topic.