The 1780 Will of John Donaldson & Other Interesting Facts
Contributed by Joanne Harley, New Bern, NC
April 04, 2002

Will of John Donaldson written June 2, 1780, probated Dec. 17, 1781 (Birthdate of 1745 would make him 
only 35 yrs. old at death.)

Recorded in Richmond Co., NC  Courthouse, Rockingham,NC In the name of God Amen.  I John Donaldson of Anson 
County North Carolina, Planter being of sound and disposing mind and memory do constitute this my last will 
and testament and desire it may be received by all as such.  first, I most humbly bequeath my soul to God 
my maker beseeching His most gracious acceptance of it.  I give my body to the earth from whence it was taken 
in full asurance of its resurectiion from thence at the last day as for my burial I desire it may be decent 
without pomp or state at the direction of my dear sife and my Executors.  As to my worldly estate I will
and positively order that my debts be paid.  After my lawful debts is paid I give bequeath and order that all 
my estate real and personal be equally divided between y beloved wife Sarah Donalson and my three son (viz 
John Donalson Peter Donaldson & William Donaldson). As to my wife Sarah Donalson's part She is to hold it or 
posess it during her natural life at the expiration of which her part is to be equally divided between my 
three sons, John, Peter, & William Donaldson.  I do also appoint my good friends Missuers  Ely Kershaw and 
Duke Gleen Esquire as my excutors with my wife Sarah Donaldson, whom I appoint as exeutrix.  They the above 
Executors and Executrix are hereby ordered and required to pay all my lawful debts and to sue for all debts 
due my estate and that they make titles for lands to the amount of my lawful debts at the expense of my estate.
In witness where of I have hereunto set my hand and seal this 2nd day of June, One thousand and Seven hundred 
& eighty.
                                                               (signed) John Donaldson (seal)
Signed, Sealed and delivered in presence of us, Poindexter Tuloch, John

Richmond County, December Court 1781, The last will and testament  of John Donaldson dec'd of said Co. was 
proven in open court by the oath of John Jones, Esq. and that he saw the other subscribing witnesses assign 
the same. Wm. Love, Clk

John Donaldson, baptized on Nov 23, 1745, NEWCASTLE ALL SAINTS CHURCH, Father John, no mention of mother. From Northumbria, England. Born in England 1745 (Source: THE SOUTH CAROLINA HISTORICAL AND GENEALOGICAL MAGAZINE, July 1901, vol. 2, No. 3.--SC Archives report Nov. '99) Source of birth: Rev. War records
John Donaldson mentioned in the Ledger book of Ely Kershaw & Co. of the Cheraw Dist., first in 1772, in the ledger book among the inventory of sundries sent to Chatham, "A trunk Belonging to Mr. Donaldson & a Portmanteau Mr. Woodmasons". Then, in April, 1773, "a trunk and 2 cases for Mr. Jno. Donaldson"
1773, Aug. 6, buys land from William Russ (220 acres /Mentions that Donaldson is a store keeper of Craven Co., SC) Land is located on the south west side of Great PeeDee in the county of Anson, on the mouth of Barber's Creek. Deed proved in Anson Co. Oct. Court 1774, proved by oath of Ely Kershaw, in the presence of Ely Kersahw, Isaac Ross and Francis Boykin. (According to an Anson Co. Deed Bk 4, page 164, this land was later sold by Donaldson's widow, Sarah and her second husband, Daniel Hicks to Charles Sparks in June of 1783.)
Anson Co. Deed Bk K, pages 297-300, 1774 March 16, buys 100 acres from Thomas Dickson 1774, April 29, buys 100 acres from Stephen Jackson One source of the land transactions of J. Donaldson can be found in "Anson Co, NC. Abstracts of Early Records" by McBee, page 95 1774, April 11, buys land from Wm. Benson, 150 acres, 1774, Sept 17, land conveyed to J. Donaldson, Merchant , by Morgan Brown, Sr. & Elizabeth his wife containing 300 acres, beginning at a stake that divides North Carolina and South Carolina, in the Co. of Anson for 75 pounds on the east side of the Pee Dee River 1779, Jan 13, 400 acres 1779, Jan 13, 100 acres from Morgan Brown , Jr., NE. side of P.D, and on both sides of Mark's Creek 1779--June 22, and then runs north to and with the Mill tract- thence east on the line of the 400 acre tract to a pine, etc. also part of a tract of 400 acres from M. Brown, Sr., & wife, Eliz.
Enlisted in Rev. War April 2, 1776, 5th SC Regt. (on record at National Archives/copy in files here) Became Col. of Militia after moving to NC.( 5th SC Regt.) This Regt. was later renumbered the 3rd. In Gregg's "HISTORY OF THE OLD CHERAWS", several of his letters to Gen. Harrington during the Rev. War are printed.
Also found on page 138, "Anson Co., NC Abstracts of Early Records", ....Oct 23, 1779, Law passed in H.C. dividing Anson Co., Richmond Co. created. Commissioners: Henry Wm . Harrinton, John Donaldson, Wm Legate, John Coal, Robet Wells, Robert Thomas, and Richard Pemberton, Esquires and comm. to erect court house, prison and stocks.
1779, 12/27, John Donaldson present at first meeting of the Richmond Co. Court of Pleas & Quarter Sessions; John Donaldson was appointed first Richmond Co. sheriff and served until Ed Williams became first elected sheriff. Source: NO ORDINARY LIVES:

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