Will of Joseph McDowell of Pleasant Gardens*
In the name of God amen, I Joseph McDowell of the [Pleasant Gardens, marked out] State of North Carolina and the County of Burke and of the Pleasant Gardens do make my last will and testament [to Wit, marked out] in the manner and form following to wit,
My will is that my wife Mary McDowell have her lawful share of all my lands if she chooses during life. My further will is that she have my three slaves Cato Bine & Africa for her share of my slave property. My further will is that she have one of my best feather beds and furniture her own wearing apparel and my trunk. My further will is that she have two of my best work horses and a young black mare.
My will is that my son John have my six hundred acre tract of land lying on both sides of Pigeon river joining below the flower Garden in fee simple. My further will is that he have my half of the flower Garden place on Pidgeon river in fee simple.
My will is that my son George have the lower half of the old original six hundred and forty acre survey called the Pleasant Garden tract which is to be divided by a line running due North and South from the center of the said tract. My further will is that he have another two hundred and sixty acre tract joining the lower part of the aforesaid tract also another fifty acre tract on the waters of Garden Creek all of which lands I will to him in fee simple.
My will is that my son James have the upper half of the aforementioned six hundred and forty acre tract known by the name of the Pleasant Garden as soon as the life incumbrance expire. The meaning of this clause is, that the said James shall possess the aforesaid lands in whole, or, in part in proportion as it ceases to be incumbered. My further will is that he have that tract of land lying Bridge Creek joining the north end of the Pleasant Gardens tract containing one hundred acres more or less. All the preceeding lands I will to him in fee simple. I further will to my son James that tract of land lying on Buck Creek and known by the name of the McClewer or Chambers place containing two hundred and sixteen acres and that my Executors immediately procure a title to be made to my said son James by McClewer or Chambers according to their bonds now in my possession.
My will is that my daughter Ann have four hundred acres of land be the same more or less lying on both of the forks of French Broad River being my share of two tracts granted to me and James Miller. My further will is that three hundred and twenty acres of land lying on Richland Creek granted to my father and me and being my half of said grant be equally divided between my son James and my daughter Ann the aforesaid lands I will to my son James and daughter Ann in fee simple.
My will is that my executors shall sell the following lands to the best advantage for the benefit of my creditors and the education of my children, to wit, two hundred and sixty acres joining above the cherry fields lying on each side of French Broad River being my share of a tract of land granted to James Glasgow and me also two hundred acres of land lying on new found creek also seven hundred and fourteen acres of land lying in Cumberland which I purchased of Col. Joseph McDowell of Johns river and have his bond to make me a title and that my Executors have full power to make good and sufficient titles for said land, so sold.
My further will is that my Negro [word "man" marked out] slave Cate with her children Jean and her children Negro man Bob, James and Hannah Binahs child be kept with their issue as a joint property until my oldest child arrives at twenty one years of age. Then to be all valued and that a division take place between my four children as nearly equal as possible provided never the less it is my desire that my wife Mary have one of the girls whichsoever she chooses to wait upon her untill her day of marriage if that should ever take place. And my further will is that my Executors dispose of the aforesaid Negroes in the interium in such a manner as shall be most productive of benefit to my heirs at the same time it is my will that care be taken that said negroes be treated well. I further will that my Negro man Harry be sold at the discretion of my Executors. My further will is that one half of a tract of land containing [words "four seven hundred" marked out] seven hundred acres lying on Jonathan Creek on the west side of Pidgeon River be sold to the best advantage at such a time as my Executors may think most proper, and that the other half shall be vested in fee simple in the Heirs of a Col. Henderson of Greenbrier in Virginia they being entitled to it by virtue of an instrument of writing obtained of me about laying a land warrant they paying the _____ of taxes and their proportion of any cost and charges that may ___ in consequences of ___ of ___ with respect to said land.
My further will is that my cattle sheep hogs and geese together with my farming utensils be left in the care of my wife for the benefit of raising my children. That my bed furniture not ___ to willed to my wife be kept for the ___ use of my children and the remaining part of my household [word "furniture" marked out] affairs to remain with my wife to assist her in raising my children. The waggon & geers which I bought from Major Neely to be returned to him with some compensation for disappointment of sale provided he will again take it. But if he will not to be sold to the best advantage by my Executors.
My further will is that my Library be kept for the Joint of my sons. My further will is that my lands kept by way of legacy to my children be rented from time to time by my Executors in the most advantageous manner and that the profits arising from said lands be applied to the maintenance and education of my children. Also I appoint Joseph McDowell John Carson and James Murphy my Executors to this my last will and testament. The above will containing four pages and a part I declare to be my last will and testament published this 19th day of March in the year of our Lord 1795.
J. McDowell (SEAL)
In presence of
John M Wilson
Robt Logan, Jurat
J.E. ____ Clk.
*A copy of this will is found at the North Carolina State Archives in Raleigh. The original is said to be in Burke County.
Thursday, December 15, 2016
Will of Joseph McDowell of Pleasant Gardens*