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Will  of Lewis Yancey Christmas-1857

Warren County Will Book 49, Pages 414-417

Son of William Christmas & Jane Yancey (later married Capt. John C. Green)

(transcribed by Deloris Williams)

I, LEWIS Y. CHRISTMAS of Warren County and the State of North Carolina being of sound mind and disposing memory do make and publish this my last will and testament, hereby revoking and making void all former wills by me at time heretofore made; I direct that my body be buried and my funeral conducted in such a manner as to my executor shall seem best.
And as to such worldly estate as it has pleased God to bestow upon me, I dispose of the same as follows.
I direct that all just debts which I may owe at the time of my death and my funeral expenses shall be paid as soon after my decease as possible
Item 1st. I give and bequeath to my friend WILLIAM PLUMMER of the town of Warrenton, my faithful and favorite negro man WILLIAM usually called WILLIAM KING.
Item 2d. I give and bequeath to my friend KEMP PLUMMER my negro boy named CASWELL.
Item 3rd It is my will and desire and I do hereby direct, that my slaves CHRISTOPHER, KEZIAH, HENRY, MARCUS, ERASMUS, NANCY, JANE and her three children LAURA, FRANK and DAVY, and all of their increase from the date of this will, shall be emancipated as soon after my decease as it can be done consistently with the laws of the State, and they are to be removed according to the Act of Assembly, beyond the limits of this State, and they are to be carried to one of the nonslaveholding States of the American Union. All expenses which may be incurred by my executor in causing the emancipation and removal of said slaves are to be paid out of my estate.
Item 4th. I give and bequeath to my executor herein after named in Trust for the negroes named in the preceeding item of my will, the sum of Ten Thousand Dollars, which sum he is to divide among the said slaves and their increase as aforesaid in equal portions, but, before any division shall be made it is my will and desire that my executor shall cause a guardian or guardians to be appointed in the nonslaveholding State or States in which they may reside, to such of said negro slaves as may be then under twenty one years of age.
Item 5th. I give and bequeath to JOSEPH SPEED JONES of the said County of Warren, my executor hereinafter named, the sum of Five Thousand Dollars as a compensation (in addition to the commissions allowed by law) for his trouble in causing the emancipation and removal of said Slaves, and for the other services required of him as executor; And it is my will and desire that if from any cause the said JOSEPH S. JONES shall refuse or fail to take upon himself the execution of this my will, or shall refuse or fail faithfully to carry out its provisions, then that the above legacy to him shall not take effect.
Item 6th. If the said JOSEPH S. JONES shall refuse or fail to take upon himself the burden of the execution this my will, or shall die before executing the same, then I give, then I give and bequeath to the person or persons who may be appointed by the County Court of Warren County, administrator on my estate, the sum of Five Thousand Dollars in addition to the commissions allowed by law) as a compensation for his services in faithfully carrying out the several provisions of my will.
Item 7th. All of the residue of my estate of every description whatever, both real and personal, including all real and personal estate which I may hereafter acquire except the increase of the slaves hereinbefore directed to be emancipated, I give devise and bequeath unto my friend WILLIAM DUKE JONES of said County of Warren, unto him, his heirs, executors administrators and assigns.
And I do hereby nominate and appoint my friend the said JOSEPH SPEED JONES executor of this my last will and Testament. In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 6th day of October A.D. 1857.

L. Y. CHRISTMAS

Witness:
JOHN WATSON
WM. EATON JR.

I LEWIS Y. CHRISTMAS of Warren County and the State of North Carolina, do make and publish this writing as a codicil to my last will and testament which said will is dated the sixth day of October A.D. 1857. And is witnessed by JOHN WATSON and WILLIAM EATON JR. Whereas in the 3rd item of my said Will, I have directed a slave by Name NANCY to be emancipated, and I have two slaves by that name, now for greater certainty, I do hereby declare that I mean NANCY the younger.
And whereas in the 5th item of said will I have bequeathed the sum of five thousand dollars to my executor, JOSEPH SPEED JONES, in addition to the commissions allowed by law, for his services therein mentioned and in Sixth item have given the same amount to any person who may be appointed administrator upon my estate by Warren County Court in the contingency therein mentioned, now I do hereby reduce the said sum down to Four Thousand Dollars, in the same manner as if the last mentioned sum had been originally in the said 5th and 6th Items of my said Will.
I do further direct that my executor is to have power to remove the slaves directed to be emancipated in said will, not only to any part of the United States where slavery does not exist, and where it may be lawful for him to carry them; but also to Mexico if he shall think proper so to do; and if he should carry any of them to Mexico he is to act in the same manner to all intents and purposes, and have the same powers and duties in reference to them as if they had been removed to any nonslaveholding State of the American Union. The monied legacies mentioned in said will, and the expenses incident to the emancipation and removal of the slaves who are directed in said will be the emancipated, I do hereby charge upon the residue mentioned in the 7th item of my said will, and I do hereby authorise and empower my executor to sell a sufficiency thereof to raise the requisite amount of money. In testimony whereof I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 5th day of June A. D. 1858.
L. Y. CHRISTMAS

Witness:
JOHN WATSON
WM. EATON JR

Warren County February Court 1862
For probate of the foregoing will and codicil, See transcript of the record in the case of J. S. JONES vs THOMAS H. CHRISTMAS & OTHERS, Recorded in Book No. 47, page 34 &c.
JNO. W. WHITE, Clk.
 

Note: These slaves were actually the children of Lewis Y. Christmas, having been born to 2 slave mistresses with whom Christmas had longtime relationships; also of note is that he never married. Later Court records reveal that they were not emancipated as requested, their inheritance having been spent by the Executors, but the surviving slaves filed a lawsuit against the Estate in 1866 and was finally settled in 1872 in Keziah Christmas, et. al. vs Joseph J. Jones, Supreme Court Case #10,812, where they received what remained of the nearly 1500 acres from their original legacy.

 

 


2012 by Deloris Williams and Ginger Christmas-Beattie for the NCGenWeb Project.  No portion of this any document appearing on this site is to be used for other than personal research.  Any republication or reposting is expressly forbidden without the written consent of the owner. Last updated 04/30/2012