Monday, January 18, 2016

Amanuensis Monday - Post #303: 1713 Will of Nathaniel Fitz Randolph (1642-1713) of Woodbridge, N.J.

Genea-blogger John Newmark (who writes the excellent  TransylvanianDutch blog) started a Monday blog theme years ago called "Amanuensis Monday."  John offers this definition for "amanuensis:" 

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

The subject today is the 1713 will of Nathaniel Fitz Randolph (1642-1713), of Woodbridge, Middlesex County, New Jersey:

The transcription of this will is (transcribed line-by-line]:

Know all men by these presents that I Nathaniell fitz Randolph of woodbridge in the County of midelsex at the province of new jersey planter
am att the writing hearof of a sound perfect disposing Minde and memory Blesed be the lord for the Same and not Knowing
howl ong I may Continue so do think and Conclude it Exspedient att this time to settel my outward Estate In order
thereunto I make this my last will and Testament in maner and form folowing. That is to say that First ^after^ My
Body be deprived of life it be buried in a Christian decent maner with such Exspences as to my Executrix and overseers
hearafter Named Shall see Meet and Conveniant. And as Concerning my outward Estate as abovesaid my
minde Intent and will is That the Same Shall be disposed and Imployed after my depts and buriall
Exspences be paid as hearin and hearafter is Expresed And to avoid all occasions of
Contraversy that may happen to be about anny former will or wills Made by me by words or
writing I do hearby revocke renounce make them all null and void and as if they had never been and
do hereby ordaine appoint and ratify this to be my last will and Testament By which I do give
to my Grandson Isaac fitz Randolph the ten pounds that is in my son Samuell fitz Randolph
hands and the interest of the money that was and is part of it due to me from my Sd Son and also the Interest
of money that was due to me from Joseph fitz Randolph my son.
                                                                                               Item I give and Bequeath to my
youngest son Benjamin fitz Randolph the twenty two and one half accers and one half be it
more or less of land that I had for my Share of the last division in Raway Neck and also my free
hold that Belongs to my land and me out of the lands yett in Comon in woodbride To have
and to hold the said land and with the appurtenances thereunto Belonging and the free
hold aforesaid To him the said Benjamin fitz Randolph his heirs and assigns forever
alwayes provided and My will and Intent is that in Case my said Son Benjamin should
die before he arives to the age of twenty one years that then said land and freehold Shall be sold
and the price of it to be divided Between the survivors of my sons and my Grandson the sd
Isaac fitz Randolph Share and Share like Equaly also I give to my said son Benjamin
thirty pounds out of my moveable Estate top be putt out to Interest within fourteen months after
my Decease by my Executrix and trustees hearafter Named until my Son comes to twenty one
years of age provided alwayes and it is my will that in case my Son Benjamin dies afore he comes
of the age of twenty one aforesaid that then the sd thirty pounds with the Interest shall be Equaly divided
between the Survivors of my wife and sons aforesaid and grandson Isaac fitz Randolph.

Item I give and Bequeth the Sheep that is att John Pikes to Be Equaly divided between my said Son Benjamin
and my Son In law Joseph Hampton and Thomas Nessmith Share and Share alike.

Item I give Bequeath and Devise ^to^ my welbeloved wife all things of ro???? Kinde quauntity quality or
Value whatsoever which belongs or appertaines to my personall or moveable Estate for her to have and
to hold to her and her heirs and assigns forever for her owen Confortable maintainence and mai-
tenance and Scoolling washing & Clothing of my Said son Benjamin fitz Randolph dureing his

Lastly I do ordaine apoint and Constitute my said wife to be my whole and Sole Executrix
of this my last will and Testament and to the End shee may fuly duly & justly perform the Same I do make
ordain & constitute my well Esteemed friends John Laing and John Kinsey and my Son Samuel fitz
Randolph to be overseers of to see and by Councell help Execute this my last will and Testament accord-
ing to the true Intent and meanin hearof. In wittness whereof I have Signed Sealed published
and Declared this to be my last will and Testament this fift Day of the third month Commonly
Called may Anno Domini 1713.
witness present

John Laing                                                                        his
Wiliam Laing                                                   Nathaniell N fitz Randolph {seal}
Edward fitz Randolph                                                     mark
John Kinsey

The source citation for this document is:

New Jersey, Wills and Probate Records, 1656-1999, indexed database with digital images, ( :, accessed 7 September 2015, no longer available), Middlesex County, page 28 (stamped) (image 253), Nathaniel Fitz Randolph will, 1713.

Nathaniel Fitz Randolph (1642-1713) and his first wife, Mary Holway (1641-1703) had seven children:

*  John Fitz Randolph (1663-1727), married Martha Adams (1658-1702).
*  Isaac Fitz Randolph (1664-1694), married (1) Martha Bingley (1664-1691) and (2) Ruth Higgins (1672-1709).
*  Nathaniel Fitz Randolph (1666-1703), who married Grace Hull (1672-1752).
*  Samuel Fitz Randolph (1668-1754), who married Mary Jones (1672-1760).
*  Joseph Fitz Randolph (1672-1718), who married Isabel Laing (1675-1755).
*  Edward Fitz Randolph (1674-1760), who married Katherine Hartshorne (1682-1759)
*  Martha Fitz Randolph (1674-????).

Nathnaiel Fitz Randolph and his second wife, Jane (Curtis) (Ogborne) (Hampton) Fitz Randolph (1661-1731) had one son:

*  Benjamin Fitz Randolph (1708-1731).

In his will, Nathaniel Fitz Randolph expressly names his sons Samuel, Joseph and Benjamin and no other child.  He also names his grandson, Isaac Fitz Randolph, who is probably the son of Nathaniel's son, Isaac Fitz Randolph.  He doesn't list his wife's name, but it is probably Jane, his second wife.  Son Edward is one of the witnesses.  What happened to the portions for his other sons, John, Nathaniel and Edward, or their heirs?  Perhaps he provided for them, through land transfers, before his death.  Usually, the heirs who do not inherit from a father are at least mentioned in the will with a nominal amount of money.

This was the only document for Nathaniel Fitz Randolph in this will book; there was no letter testamentary, inventory, account or distribution.  Nathaniel died on 21 November 1713, about six months after writing the will.

Nathaniel and Mary (Holway) Fitz Randolph are my 8th great-grandparents.  I descend through son Samuel Fitz Randolph (1668-1754) and his wife Mary Jones.

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