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Will of Stephen H Morton
Contributed by Bill Gibson
Source: State Of North Carolina Archives
Written: May 22, 1886
Recorded: June 4, 1886

Last Will and Testament of Stephen H. Morton 22 May 1886

I Stephen H. Morton, manufacturer of the City of Wilmington, State of North Carolina, being of sound and disposing mind and memory, do make and publish this to be my last Will and testament, hereby revoking all wills by me at any time heretofore made.

First. I give and bequeath to my wife, Mary C. Morton, one certificate for ten shares of stock in first National Bank of the City of Wilmington, N.C.

Second. I give and bequeath to my son, Geo. L. Morton, the proceeds of one policy of the Cornelius Harnett Council, No. 231 in the sum of Three thousand Dollars written for his benefit in May 1882.

Third. I give, devise and bequeath all the rest and residue of my estate, property and rights of property of every kind whatsoever in equal proportions, share and share alike, to my said wife and son, during the life time of my wife, and at her death the residue of her portion to my said son or his issue. But on the special condition that no part of the Real Estate herein devised shall be sold for a division without the consent and approval of both heirs
under this will.

Fourth. I appoint my wife, Mary C. Morton and my son Geo. L. Morton executors of this my will. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand this 22nd day of May 1886

Stephen H. Morton [his signature]

Signed, published and declared by the testator to be his last will in the presence of us, who in his presence, and in the presence of each other, and at his request have subscribed the same as witnesses.
Benj F Hall
Herbert L Fentress

State of North Carolina
County of New Hanover
In the Superior Court
Before the Clerk
A paper writing purporting to be the last Will and Testament of Stephen H Morton deceased late of the City of Wilminton and County and State above written, is exhibited in open Court before me S. Van Am Clerk of the Superior Court of said County by Geo L Morton one of the executors therein named, and the due execution of the said Will by the said Stephen H Morton is proved by the oath and Examination of B. F. Hall and Herbert L Fentress the subscribing witnesses thereto: who being duly sworn, depose and say, and each for himself deposeth and saith, that he is the subscribing Witness to the said Will, now shown him, purporting to be the Last Will and testament of Stephen H Morton, that said Stephen H. Morton in the presence of this deponent subscribing his name at the end of said Will now shown as aforesaid and bears date 22nd day of May 1886, and the deponent further saith that the said Stephen H. Morton the testator aforesaid, did at the time of subscribing his name as aforesaid declare the said paper writing, as subscribed by him and exhibited, to be his last Will and Testament and this deponent did thereupon subscribe his name to the said Will as attesting witness thereto, and at the request and in the presence of the said testator, and each subscribing witness in the presence of each other - and this deponent further saith, that at the said time when the said testator subscribed his name to the said Will as aforesaid, and at the time of deponents subscribing his name as attesting Witness thereto, as aforesaid, the same subscribing his name as attesting Witness thereto, as aforesaid, the same Stephen H. Morton was of sound mind and memory, of full age to execute a Will, and was not under any restraint to the Knowledge, information or belief of this deponent and further these deponents say not

Herbert L Fentress (drawn seal)
Benj F Hall (drawn seal)

Severally sworn and subscribe this 4t day June 1886 before me

S. Van A---e
Clerk Superior Court

North Carolina
New Hanover County
In the Superior Court
It is therefore considered and adjudged by the Court, that the said paper writing and every part [appears to be spelled as "pate"] thereof, is the last Will and testament of Stephen H Morton (deceased) and the same with the
foregoing examination and this certificate all ordered to be recorded and filed, and thereupon the said Mary C. Morton executrix as aforesaid, duly qualified, as such by taking the oath required by law this 4th June 1886
S. Van A---
Clerk Superior Court

New Hanover County:

The Sate of North Carolina,
To all whom these presents shall come Greeting:  It being satisfactorily proven to the undersigned, Clerk of the Superior Court for New Hanover County, that S.H.Morton late of said County, is dead, having first made and published his last WILL and TESTAMENT, and it appearing that Mary C. Morton is entitled to the Administration of the Estate of said deceased, and having on the 4th day of June, 1886, qualified as Executor of the last Will and Testament of S.H.Morton, according to law - NOW, these are therefore to empower the said Executorix to enter in and upon all and singular the goods and chattels, rights and credits of said deceased, and the same to take into possession, wheresoever to be found, and all the just debts of the deceased to pay and satisfy, and the residue of said Estate to distribute according to law. Witness my hand and Seal of said Court, this 4th day of June, 1886

S. Van A---
Clerk Superior Court New Hanover County.

Additional Comments:
The second wife of Stephen Henderson Morton, originally of Onslow County, was Mary Caroline Wilder, daughter of Abram Wilder. S.H. Morton went into the turpentine distilling business with Jessee Wilder, his wife's brother. The business later became the "Morton and Hall Company" and after the death of S.H. Morton, his son, George Lee Morton took over the business. The business name was changed to the "Geo. L. Morton Co". This company is documented in the "Wilmington Up to Date" pamphlet published in 1902 and currently available online

©2009 Natasha Miles