Monday, February 12, 2018

Amanuensis Monday - Probate Records of Joseph Keyes (1667-1757) of Westford, Mass.

This week's document for Amanuensis Monday is the 1745 Will of Joseph Keyes (1667-1757) of Westford, Middlesex County, Massachusetts:

a)  Probate Packet 13,196, image 2:

b)  Probate Packet 13,196, image 3:

The transcription of the will is:

In the Name of God Amen. I Joseph Keyes of 
Wesford in the County of Middlesex Gen^n 
being in Bodyly health & of sound and Disposing mind 
and memory Thanks be given unto God, therefore Call-
ing unto mind the Mortality of my Body and Knowing 
that it is appointed for all Men ^once^ to dye, Do for Avoiding 
Controversies after my Decease Make Publish & Declare 
this my Last Will and Testament in maner following 
And first of all I give and Recommend my Soul unto the 
Hands of God that gave ^it^, and my ^body^ I Recommend to the 
Earth to be Buried In Decent Christian Burial at the 
Discretion of my Executor. Nothing Doubting but at ye 
General Resurrection I Shall Receive the same again 
by the Mighty power of god. And as Touching such 
Worldly Estate wherewith it hath pleased God to Bless me
 in this Life I Give Demise and Despose of the same 
in the following manner and form.

Imprimus I Give and bequeath to Joannah 

my Dearly Beloved Wife all my Houshold goods During 
her Life, also I give to Mirriam Losson my Eldest Daughter 
Twelve Pounds & Ten Shilling in Bills Emitted in the year 
One Thousand Seven Hundred and forty four 
or in other Bills Eaqul to the same mailing Bills of the 
Province of the Massachusetts Bay 
and one Cow. Also I give to my Daughter Lydia 
Mudge Twelve Pounds and Ten Shilling in the Like 
Bills Described aforesaid.

"Also I give to my Daughter Joannah Fitch Twelve 

Pounds and Ten Shillings in the Like Bills Described afore-
said, and Also I give to my Three Daughters Mirriam 
Lydia and Joannah after my wife Decease all my 
Houshold goods Eaquily to be Devided amongst them. 
And the Sums of money that I have given to my Three 
Daughters before Named, my will is that Jonathan 
Kyes my Grandson Should pay unto my Three Daughters or 
to Thare Heirs or Assigns The full sum before mention-
ed in Two Years after my Decease.

Also my will is that the Children of my Son Joseph Keyes 

^deceased^ shall have paid out of my Estate after my Death the Sum 
of Twenty shillings in Bills of the Last Emittion of the 
Province of Massachusetts Bay.

Also I Do Nominate and appoint Josiah Sartell of Groton 

in the County of Middlesex to be Sole Executor of this my Last Will 
and Testament, And I do hereby utterly Disallow Revoke 
and Disannul all and every other former Testament & Wils 
Legacies and Bequests and Executors by me in any ways 
before Named Willed and Bequeathed, Ratifying and Confirming 
this and no other to be my Last Will and Testament 
In Witness Whereof I have hereunto Sett my Hand 
and Seal this Twenty Ninth Day of June One 
Thousand Seven Hundred And forty five 
And in the Eighteenth year of his Majesties Reign.

Signed Sealed Published
Pronounced and Declared
By the said Joseph Kyes ................................................ Joseph Keyes
as his Last Will and
Testament In Presence
of us the Subscribers
Jacob Wright
Andrew Spaulding
Ephraim Wright

The source citation for this will is:

Middlesex County, Massachusetts, Probate case files, Joseph Keyes Case File 13,196, 1757, Westford, 8 images; "Middlesex County, Mass. Probate File Papers, 1648-1871," digital images, American Ancestors ( accessed 10 February 2018); original papers on file at Suffolk County Probate Court, Boston, Mass.

The will of Joseph Keyes, late of Westford, gentleman, was presented for probate by Josiah Sartell, the named executor. Jacob Wright and Andrew Spaulding made oath that they saw the said testator sign, seal and declare the will to be his last will and testament. The will was proved by the Court on 11 July 1757.  There are no other records of substance in the probate file.Joseph Keyes married Joanna Cleaveland (1670-1758) in 1690 in Chelmsford, Mass.  They had four children:  Lydia (1693-????); Joanna (1695-1787); Joseph (1698-1744); Miriam (1700-????).

Joseph Keyes wrote his will on 29 June 1745, soon after his only son, Joseph Keyes (1698-1744) died.  Conveniently for researchers, he named his three daughters with their married names.  He also named his grandson Jonathan, who was a son of his only son, Joseph Keyes, deceased.  Jonathan Keyes was deeded the real estate of Joseph Keyes Senior before the writing of this will, so he did not receive any property in the will.  Joanna (Cleaveland) Keyes, the widow of Joseph Keyes Senior, died in March 1758, and her husband's will provided for the personal estate to be passed to their three daughters.

I descend from Joseph Keyes, this testator, through his son Joseph Keyes (1698-1744) and his son, Jonathan Keyes (1722-1787).  Joseph Keyes (1667-1757) is my 7th great-grandfather.


NOTE:  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."

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