Tuesday, October 16, 2012

William Neal's Will, 1856, Boone County, Kentucky

On 30 May 1856, William Neal had this will prepared and witnessed.
A transcription of the will follows the images.

[MS page 124]
Know all men by these presents, that I William Neal, of
the County of Boone and State of Kentucky, being of advanced
age, but of Sound Mind, and disposing memory and having a
desire to dispose of Such worldly goods as I possess, do make my
Last Will & Testament in Manner and form as follows: Viz:

Item 1st. After my decease, I wish all my just debts of every
kind, paid.

Item 2nd. I give to my wife, Nancy Neal, the farm on which
I now reside, during her natural life; or so long as she remains
my widow.

Item 3rd. I give and bequeath to my Son, Elijah Neal fifteen
(15) acres of land of the farm after the death of my wife.

Item 4th. After said fifteen acres (15) is allotted to my
Son Elijah aforesaid, I direct that the remainder of my land
be Sold, and the proceeds equally divided amongst all of my
Children or their legal heirs, except my said Son Elijah. I also
wish any personal estate that may remain after the death of
Myself and wife, to be sold, and the proceeds applied to the
payment of funeral expenses, and my just debts, Should
there be such, and any Surplus that may remain to be divided
equally amongst all my Children or their legal heirs.
Lastly, I appoint my friend, James N. Stephens, Executor
of this, my Last Will & Testament.
As witness my hand, this 30th day of May 1856.
Attest:William his x mark Neal
T. C. Ryle
B. [H?]. Stephens
F. M. Stephens

Boone County Court, November Term, 1862
This writing purporting to be the Last Will and Testament of William
Neal deceased was this day produced in Court and proved according
to law by the oath of T. C. Ryle one of the Subscribing witnesses thereby
and who also testifies that he was present at the signing of the same
by the other two. Wherefrom the same was ordered to be recorded
as the Last Will and Testament of William Neal deceased.
Lewis W. Webb, Clerk


Boone County, Kentucky. Will Book H:124, William Neal will, 30 May 1856; County Clerk, Burlington.


William Neal's will only names his wife (Nancy) and one son (Elijah) but none of his other children. According to the will, the distribution of his estate will occur after his and his wife's death. At that time, Elijah will get 15 acres of the farm. The remaining land was then to be sold and the proceeds divided equally amongst the children (not including Elijah). William's personal estate would also be sold to pay for his funeral expenses and personal debts. Any remaining funds were then to be equally divided amongst the children.

The Clerk's entry at the bottom of the will was made sometime in 1862 after William had died.
Subsequent probate recordings detail the inventory of William's personal estate, a sale bill, and a land division. These will be posted next, in order.

For a long time, I had been searching for a source that identifies Delilah Neal's parents. She is not mentioned in this will. But later, when a deed is granted to Elijah for the 15 acres bequeathed by his father, Delilah (Neal) Sharp is listed as a defendant in Elijah's petition for the deed.