Monday, October 19, 2015

Amanuensis Monday - Post #290: 1767 Will of Thomas Martin (1737-1767) 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 1767 will of Thomas Martin (1737-1767) of Woodbridge, Middlesex County, New Jersey:

The transcription of the will and associated papers is (transcribed line by line):

[image 104, bottom of left-hand page 162]

Thomas Martin's                      } In the Name of god Amen. I Thomas Martin of Woodbridge in the
Will                                           } County of Middlesex & province of East New Jersey Weaver being
Recorded Novem'r 11th 1767 } sick & weak of body, but of Sound mind & Memory thanks be given to
God. Therefore & being minded that it is appointed For all Men Once to Die do
make & ordain this my last will & testament In Manner & Form following that
Is to say my soul I recommend to god who gave it & my body to the Earth to be

[right-hand page of image 104, page 163]

Buried in a Christian like & Decent manner at the Discretion of my Executors no:
thing Doubting but at the generall resurrection I shall receive the same by the migh:
ty power of God & touching such worldly Estate wherewith it hath pleased God to bless
me in this Life I give & bequeath & Dispose off in the following maner & form. Imprimis
I will that all my Lawfull Debts & Funeral Charges be paid as soon as Conveniently
may be after my Decease by my Executors hereafter named. Item I will that all my
moveable Estate of What kind soever & also so much of my Land as will be Sufficient to
Clear all my Debts be Exposed to Sale & it is my will that such part of my Lands be
Disposed off by my Executors for the Discharging of my Debts as they shall think
the most proper or convenient. Item I Will that my two Sons vizt. Mulford Martin
& Thomas Martin be maintained & supported upon the benefits & profits arising
from my said Estate & if either of Each of my said Sons should live to a proper
age to be put to trades that then it shall be left to the Discretion of my said Exrs to
act as they shall think it proper. Item I will & bequeath my said Estate unto my
said sons Mulford Martin & Thomas Martin & to their heirs & assigns for Ever to be Equ:
ally Divided between them as soon as my Eldest Son Mulford Martin is of age if
my said Executors, or the survivors of them shall think proper To do and
if Either of my sons should die without having Lawfull Issue then my will is
that my Estate Descend to the Survivor & his heirs. And Lastly I make ordain Consti:
tute & appoint Isaac Faurot & Nathaniel Martin & Samuel Ayers my only & sole
Executors to this my last Will & Testament & I do hereby Utterly Disannul & Revoke
all other Wills Testaments Legacies & Execut'rs by me at any time before this Willed
named or Bequeathed, Ratifying & Confirming this and no other to be my Last Will
& testament. In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand seal this sixth Day of
October in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred sixty seven...1767.
Signed Sealed published pronounced & Declared     }
by the said Tho's Martin as his last will & testament }      Thomas Martin {Ls}
in presence of James Ayers, Daniel Compton, Neil Campbell, Jno. Jackson Sheridan
All the above truely said by me to the testator.

Memorandum that on the nineteenth day of October one thousand seven hundred
& Sixty Seven James Ayers & Neil Campbell two of the within Subscribed Witnesses ap:
peared before me John Mackay duly authorized & they being sworn on the Holy
Evangelists did Declare that they were present & did see Thomas Martin the tes:
tator in the within will named sign & Seal the same & heard him publish pronounce & Declare it to be his last will & testament. That at the Doing there he was of sound
mind & Memory to the best of their knowledge & as they verily believe & that at the same
time Daniel Compton the other witness was also present & Signed as an Evidencer as
they each did in the presence of the sd Thomas Martin. Also that at the same
time Isaac Faurot & Samuel Ayres two of the Executors within named came before
me were duley Qualified by taking the oath of Exors by Law appointed.
Examined & Agrees with the Original. John Mackay & ????? Reg'r John Mackay

[In the left margin of Page 163]

Probate granted by Governor Franklin &c (in the usual
form &c) dated the same 13th day of October 1767
For: Reed Junr Secret'y & Reg'r

The source citation for this record is:

New Jersey Surrogate's Court, Middlesex County, Wills, Liber I, pages 262-263 (image 104), Thomas Martin will, 1767; "New Jersey, Wills and Probate Records, 1656-1999," digital images, ( accessed 7 September 2015, images no longer available); citing original data from New Jersey County, District and Probate Courts.

In this 1767 will, 30 year old Thomas Martin does not name his wife, so she may be deceased.  He does name his two children, Mulford Martin (born about 1763) and Thomas Martin (born about 1766) as his heirs.  He appointed Nathaniel Martin, Samuel Ayers and Isaac Faurot as executors, and as executors were responsible for maintaining and supporting the two small children until Mulford reached the age of majority.  It is likely that the James Ayers named as a witness was Thomas Martin's father-in-law, the father of Elizabeth Ayers. 

There are also papers in this collection for:

*  Inventory taken on 21 October 1767 by James Manning and Henry Langstaff, which totaled £232-5s-1d.  Note that this did not include the real estate.  The inventory is three pages.

*  Account by executors:  Land was sold to Benjamin Thornell (£99-7s-8d); Samuel Martin (£102-1s-3d); Dugal Campbell (£11-19s-6d; Samuel Martin (no deed given).  There were charges against the account for two years of education for Mulford Martin.  

My ancestry is through the son, Mulford Martin (1763-????) who married Betsey Rolfe in about 1788, and probably moved to upstate New York before 1810 with Betsey's family.  Their daughter, Sarah Martin (1792-1860) married John Putman (1785-1863).

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