Will of James Williams, Hardin County, KY 1833; Releasing Ben

James Williams died in Hardin County, Kentucky in 1833. He left a will naming children Thomas, Daniel, John and Kitty (Catherine who married Bartholomew Ramsey there in 1804.)

The origins of this James Williams seem to be somewhat of a mystery. He also named two grandsons – James and George Park, bequeathing $50 each to them.

James and George Park appear to be the sons of George Park (1773-1857) and his wife. The family tree of George Park is another one of those hot messes to be found online, having been born and married both in Baltimore, Maryland and Union County, South Carolina. His wife is said to be Betsey Hahn, but we would expect her to be a Williams if George and James were grandchildren of James Williams.

James’s children, Daniel and Kitty, both lived past the 1850 census. Their places of birth are given as Virginia.

This isn’t part of “my” Cumberland County, Virginia family so I leave the mystery for others to solve, but I wanted to give some background information as it may be important to the origin of James Williams’ “negro man Ben.”

Will of James Williams, Hardin County, KY 1832/33
Will Book D: 208-209
Family Search

I James Williams of Hardin County Kentucky knowing the certainty of death and being of sound and disposing mind and memory and being desirous to make disposition of my worldly matters do make and publish this my last will and testament in manner following to wit.
In the first place I direct all my just debts and funeral expenses to be paid.
It is my will and desire that my negro man Ben be sold and my horse be sold on such credit as my Executors may think best. And it is my will and desire that my executors pay out of the proceeds of my estate to my two grandsons James & George Park fifty Dollars Each.
It is my will and desire that the residue of my Estate be equally divided among my four children Thomas Daniel and John Williams and (Kitty?) Ramsey. (Catherine Williams married Bartholomew Ramsey on 1 February 1804, Hardin County, Kentucky.)

Lastly, I constitute and hereby appoint my two sons, Thomas & Daniel Executors to this my last will and testament.

In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this 9th day of July 1832.

James (his mark) Williams

Signed sealed and acknowledged
in presence of us
Adin Coombs Senr.
Adin Coombs Junr.

At a court began and held for Hardin County at the Court House in Elizabeth Town on Monday the 21st day of October 1833 the foregoing Instrument of writing purporting to be the last will and testament of James Williams deceased was produced in court and proven by the oaths of Adin Coombs Senr. and Adin Coombs Junr. the subscribing witnesses thereof to be the last will and testmanet of James Williams deceased And the same was established & ordered to be recorded. Whereupon I have truly recorded the Same this 11th day of December 1833.

Saml Haycraft Clk.

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