Monday, April 12, 2010

Amanuensis Monday - the Will of Jonathan White (1806-1850)

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, my subject is Jonathan White (1806-1850), the son of Humphrey and Sybil (Kirby) White of Glocester, RI, the husband of Miranda (Wade) White, and the father of Henry Arnold White, Albert White and Harriet White. Henry Arnold White is one of my second great-grandfathers, who married Amy Frances Oatley.

Jonathan White died 19 April 1850 in Killingly CT at age 47 of lung fever. He was white, a farmer, resided Killingly, born Glocester RI (Killingly CT Births, Marriages, Deaths, Volume 2, 1849-1881, page 466).

Jonathan White died testate, and his will dated 18 April 1850 was presented to the Killingly CT Probate Court on 27 April 1850. The inventory of his goods and estate totalled $1,227.55 (including real estate valued at $900.00), and was accepted by the Probate Court on 28 May 1850 (Killingly (Connecticut) Probate Records, Volume 1 (1849-1854), Page 181, accessed on FHL Microfilm 0,004,655). Jonathan White's will was presented to the Killingly Probate Court on 27 April 1850 by the executor, Samson B. Covill. The will reads:

"In the name of God Amen. I Jonathan White of Killingly in the State of Connecticut being sane in mind though weak and debilitated in body in view of approaching dissolution do make this my last will and testament in manner following, that is to say,

"1st I give and devise to my beloved wife Maranda White the improvement of all my lands in the State of Connecticut during her natural life to manage as she sees fit, also my household furniture to dispose of as she sees fit, thinks just and right in any manner she chooses.

"2nd I give and bequeath to my sons Henry White and Albert White all my lands in the state of Rhode Island to dispose of in any way they choose, share and share alike to them, their heirs and assigns forever.

"3rd I give and devise to my said sons, after the decease of their said Mother Miranda all the lands and improvements thereon that I own in the State of Connecticut to them their heirs and assigns forever, providing they pay to their sister Harriet White two hundred dollars within one year from her said Mother's decease.

"4th I give and bequeath to my two sons all the residue of my estate both real and personal, wherever it may be found, and said Henry & Albert are to pay all my just debts and funeral expenses in order to make this my will valid on their part as aforesaid.

""5th my said wife is to suffer my daughter Harriet White to live and board with her until she is married free of expense, also her clothing if she stays at home.

"Lastly, I hereby nominate and appoint Deacon Samson B. Covill of Killingly in the State of Connecticut hereby sole Executor of this my last will and testament hereby revoking and annulling all other and former wills by me made, and establishing this and this only as my last will and testament. In testimony whereof I do hereunto set my hand and seal this 18th day of April AD 1850."
.............................................................. his

............................................... Jonathan X White
............................................................. mark

This is the only record I have that explicitly names all of the children of Jonathan and Miranda (Wade) White. I have not found all of the land records yet in Killingly CT or Glocester, RI that are referred to in the will.

Jonathan wrote this will the day before he died of "lung fever" - probably pneumonia. His wife, Miranda, died four months later, leaving three children behind.

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