Monday, February 22, 2010

Amanuensis Monday - Martin Carringer's Will

Genea-blogger John Newmark (who writes the excellent TransylvanianDutch blog) started his own Monday blog theme several months ago called Amanuensis Monday. I loved the idea, and recently decided to follow it in order to share ancestral information and keep the theme going, and perhaps it will expand to other genealogy bloggers.

What does "amanuensis" mean? John offers this definition:

"A person employed to write what another dictates or to copy what has been written by another."

Today's transcription is the will of my 4th-great-grandfather, Martin Carringer (1758-1835), who died on 25 January 1835 in (then) Sandy Lake township, Mercer County, Pennsylvania.

The will of Martin Carringer reads (from Mercer County, Pennsylvania Will Book, Volume 2, Pages 33-34, accessed on FHL Microfilm 0,878,967):

"In the name of God, amen. I Martin Carringer of Sandy Lake township Mercer County and State of Pennsylvania being old and infirm in body though sound in mind and memory do make and publish this my last will and testament. And first I commit soul to God who gave it and my body to be buried in a decent and becoming manner. Next, it is my will that my funeral expenses and lawful debts be paid first out of my worldly substance.

"Next I give and bequeath to my son Henry one hundred and fifty acres of land laid off the east end of the plantation whereon I now live including my improvements except the back room where I now live which I reserve for the use of my beloved wife Mary as long as she shall live. Also he is to provide all necessaries of life for her and keep her decently as long as she lives and to her in a horse and saddle and two cows for her use and privilege to take what fruit she pleases for her own use. The horse and cows to be Henry's at her death. Also I give her all her household furniture, beds and clothes to be at her disposal, also he is to keep four sheep for her use as long as she lives.

"Next I give to my son George the residue of the aforesaid plantation also a lot in the town of Greenville, the choice to be decided by putting the numbers four which I own into a hat -- and he to draw the first ticket and the no. he draws to be his lot. Next I give to my son Joseph two hundred acres of land lot No 965 in the fifth district donation land in said county.

"Next I give to my son Jacob one hundred acres of land on which he now lives. Next I give my three daughters Elizabeth, Catherine and Mary each a lot in the town of Greenville, the choice to be decided as above directed. Next I direct my son Joseph to sell a lot of land which I own in the state of Ohio and keep the proceeds provided he loses the land above named and if he holds the land the money to be equally divided among my three daughters above named. Next I constitute and appoint my son Joseph and Francis Beaty to be executors of this my last will and testament.

"In testimony hereof, I have hereunto set my hand and seal this third day of March eighteen hundred and thirty."
............................................................. Martin Carringer (seal)

"Signed and sealed in presence of Henry Williamson, David Beaty Mercer County.

"This fourth day of Feby 1835 personally appeared before me, Samuel Holstein registrar for the probate of wills in and for said county, Henry Williamson and David Beaty the subscribing witnesses to the annexed will who after being duly sworn according to law did depose and say that they were present and saw the testator Martin Carringer sign the annexed will and heard him acknowledge the same to be his last will and testament and that at the time of his so doing the said Martin Carringer was of sound mind, memory and understanding to the best of their knowledge and belief. Registered Feb 14th 1835. Saml Holstein register letters testamentary issued so dis. to above executor."

I note that only seven children - Henry, George, Joseph, Jacob, Elizabeth, Catherine and Mary are listed in the will. Son Solomon is not listed, and I have no other record of him. The daughter Calli (listed in the family Bible pages found in Martin Carringer's Revolutionary War Pension File) is not listed by name either. I don't have any other data for a daughter Mary - I wonder if Calli was known by Mary at some point in time.

I have not looked for the land records for the lot in Ohio (perhaps Trumbull or Warren Counties?) or the lots in Greenville. I do have a copy of the 1860 plat map for Perry County that shows the residences of George, Joseph, Henry and Cornelius Carringer on or near the Martin Carringer donation land.


Gini said...

Congratulations on the top 40 Family Tree Magazine blogs, you very much deserve it.

Joan Miller - Luxegen Genealogy said...

I like the idea of this theme. I have several wills I could share.

Congrats on your Family Tree Magazine Top 40 genealogy blogs honor! It is well deserved and we truly appreciate all of your hard work!

Hope to meet you in person at the Jamboree!