Contributed by Victoria Proctor, 28 May 2003
Will Book "A", pages 372-376
In the name of God Amen. I JAMES PETERKIN of the State of South Carolina and District of Marlborough being in feeble bodily health but of sound and disposing mind and memory do make ordain and publish the following to be and contain my last will and Testament in manner and form following (viz)
First-It is my will and desire that as soon after my death as may be practicable that my Executors herein after named, shall proceed to collect all debts due me and to pay all my just debts and if there should not be enough of available debts due me to pay and discharge all I owe, then it is my will and desire that my Executors shall sell sufficient of such property of my estate as they may deem most advisable to pay and discharge all and every just debt due by me that may remain unpaid.
Second- It is my will and desire that during the life time or widowhood of my wife BARBARA PETERKIN, that all my property both real and personal of every description (except what may be hereafter except) shall be kept together and the negroes worked on the plantation or elsewhere at the discretion of my wife and either of my Executors and all the said property of every description managed for the mutual support and maintenance of my wife BARBARA PETERKIN and of my children SUSAN ALEXANDER, MARTHA ANN ELIZABETH, MARY ANN, GEORGE ALEXANDER, MARGARET ANN, and JESSE ALEXANDER PETERKIN and for the education of my said children which is to be conducted at the discretion of my Executors and it is my desire that my said children shall all receive such support, Maintenance and Education out of the common fund without any charge being made on any of them (if they remain with their Mother) up to the time when my son JESSE ALEXANDER shall arrive at the age of twenty one years, To effect this object I hereby loan to my wife BARBARA PETERKIN during the term of her natural life or widowhood, all my estate both real and personal, of every description consisting in part of Lands, Negroes, bonds, notes, choses in action, Stock of every description, House hold and kitchen furniture plantation tools and all and every other kind of property of which I may die seised and possessed (except what may be hereafter expected), To hold, use and possess the same for the mutual support of herself and my children that may remain with her and in no instance shall any of said children be subject to any charge for their support, maintenance and Education, until my said son JESSE ALEXANDER shall arrive at the age of twenty one years. And should any of my said children marry before my said son JESSE ALEXANDER shall arrive at the age of twenty one years, or before the division of the negroes as herein after directed then it is my will and desire that such child or children so marrying shall each receive out of the common stock loaned to my wife, one bed and furniture and two cows and calves.
Third, It is my will and desire that when my son JESSE ALEXANDER PETERKIN shall arrive at the age of twenty one years, Then all the negroes belonging to my estate as with those that I may own at my decease With their Increase
as also any negroe or negroes and their increase that may be purchased by my Executors as herein after directed, shall be equally divided among my children SUSAN ALEXANDER, MARTHA ANN ELIZABETH, MARY ANN, GEORGE ALEXANDER, MARGARET ANN, and JESSE ALEXANDER PETERKIN share and share alike, and should any of my said children die before the said division and having living issue at the time of said division in that case the child or children of such of my deceased children shall take the portion to which their parents would be entittitled to if living.
If my wife shall deem it best that my lands of which I may die possessed shall be sold to enable her to remove with my children to the Western Country or elsewhere, Then I hereby authorize and empower my said wife BARBARA who I shall appoint Executrix of this my last Will to consult with either of my Executors herein after to be appointed and With their of my Executors herein after to be appointed and with their advise and cooperation, to sell and dispose of all my said real estate if in their judgment they think they can get a fair price for the same, and I hereby invest my Executrix with either one of my Executors with full power to make good sufficient titles to said real estate consisting of my River tract containing Seven hundred and Sixty acres more or less, selling the same on such terms and on such time an securities as they may deem fit and proper, and it is my will and desire that that the proceeds arising from such sale to the extent of four thousand dollars if the real estate so sold shall amount to that sum or more shall be by my Executrix and either one of my Executors invested in a plantation either in the Western Country or in this country as my Wife may desire and the titles to the said land also purchased shall be taken in the name of the Executors in trust for my said wife BARBARA during her life or Widowhood and after her death or marriage I will and desire that the said land so purchased as aforesaid shall be equally divided between my sons GEORGE ALEXANDER and JESSE ALEXANDER PETERKIN share and share alike. But should my said wife not deem it expedient to sell the real estate that I may die possessed of as before described, Then it is my will and desire that on the death or marriage of my said wife Barbara that all my said lands so before described shall be equally divided between my sons GEORGE ALEXANDER and JESSE ALEXANDER PETERKIN share and share alike. But in the event that my wife and one of my Executors shall sell my said lands and if they shall receive for them more than the sum of four thousand dollars (which is previously directed to be invested in other lands), Then and in that case it is my Will and desire that the over plus (over the said sum of four thousand dollars) shall by my Executors be invested in Negroes to be placed in the common stock and to take the same course with the other negroes as set forth in the previous part of this my last will and Testament. It is also my Will and desire that if my wife should remove With my children to the Western Country and if there are any of the negroes belonging to my estate that are not willing to remove there with her, then it is my will and desire that my Executors shall sell and dispose of the said negroe or negroes --and with the funds arising from such sale my said Executors shall purchase other negroes to supply the place or places of those they may sell. It is my will and desire that should my wife BARBARA PETERKIN marry after my decease that her duties from
JAMES PETERKIN (LS)
that time as Executrix of this my last will and Testament shall cease and determine and in that case she shall receive as her share of my estate one bed and furniture and two cows and calves and all the property loans to her in the previous part of this will together with its increase shall be divided between all my children share and share alike, -It is my will and desire that at the death of my wife BARBARA PETERKIN, then all the rest, residue and remainder of my estate consisting of all that is loaned to her in the preceding part of the will that is not specifically otherwise bequeathed and devised arising and all that may have accumulated therefrom shall be equally divided between my said children SUSAN ALEXANDER, MARTHA ANN ELIZABETH, MARY ANN, GEORGE ALEXANDER, MARGARET ANN, and JESSE ALEXANDER PETERKIN share and share alike. I have before stated that when my son JESSE ALEXANDER shall arrive at the age of twenty one years that I desire that a division shall then be had of all the negroes belonging to my estate between all my children therein named, But should my son JESSE ALEXANDER die before he arrives at the age of twenty one years, then it is my will and desire that the said division shall take place when my youngest child living shall arrive at the age of twenty one years.
And lastly, I do hereby nominate constitute and appoint my wife BARBARA PETERKIN Executrix and my nephews JOHN W. McLEOD of Marlborough District and BENJAMIN THOMAS of Wilcox County & State of Alabama and my son GEORGE ALEXANDER when he arrives at the age of twenty one years, Executors to this my last Will and Testament hereby revokeing and disannulling all former Wills by me made and ratifying and confirming this to be my last will and Testament contained in two sheets of paper together annexed and marked First page, Second page and Third Page.
In Witness whereof I JAMES PETERKIN have hereunto set my hand and Seal this sheet and also on the second page of the sheet attached hereunto this the twenty second day of June in the year of our Lord One thousand Eight hundred & Fifty two.
JAMES PETERKIN (LS)
Signed Sealed and declared by the
said JAMES PETERKIN the said Test-
ator as and for his last will and
Testament who in his presence and
at his request and in the presence
of each other have subscribed our
names as witnesses thereto, the said
Will being written on two sheets of
paper & marked (First page-second
page_ third page) the said Testator
having singed & Sealed the bottom
of the second page, as will as this.
L. E. STUBBS
A. B. HENAGAN
W. A. McLEOD
Recorded in Will A Page 302
Recorded Oct. 29 th 1852
by JOS. DAVID, Ordy
Case1 Box 30
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