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Robert Houston of Somerset County
Will Written 25 Apr 1693, Probated 20 Jan 1693/4

This will transcription has been provided by Peggy Miller. Thank you, Peggy!




In the name of god amen.

To all Christian People to whom these presents shall come Know yee that the 25 Day of April in the year of our Lord 1693 I ROBERT HOUSTON of Pocomoke be in the County of Somerset in the province of Maryland planter being weak of body yet of good and perfect memory Thanks be to God Calling to Remembrance the uncertainty of this Transitory Life and that all flesh must yield unto Death whensoever it shall please God to call Do make Constitute ordain and Declare this my Last will and Testament in the manner and form following Revoking and annulling by these presents all and Every Testament and Testament will or wills heretofore by me made and Declared Either by word of mouth or writing and this to be taken only for my Last Will and Testament and none other. And first being penitent and sorry from the bottom of my heart for my Sins past most humbly Desiring forgiveness for the Same I give and Commit my soul unto almighty god my Savior and Redeemer in whom and by the Merits of Jesus Christ I trust and believe assuredly to be Saved and to have full remission and forgiveness of all my Sins and that my Soul with my Body at the general Day of Judgment and Resurrection Shall rise again with Joy and through the Merrits of Christs Death and passion Inherite the Kingdom of Heaven prepared for his Elect and Chosen and my body to be buried in such place where it shall please my Executors after named to appoint and now for the Settling of my Temporall Estate and Such Goods and Chattels and Debts as it hath pleased god far above my Deserts to bestow upon me I do order give and Dispose the Same in manner and form following that is to Say first I will that all those Debts and Duties that I owe in right or Conscience to any Manner of person or persons Shall be well and truly contented and paid or ordained to be paid within convenient after my decease by my Executors hereafter named

Item I give and bequeath to my wife GRACE HOUSTON her thirds of the plantation whereon I now live during the time of her widowhood but in case she marry's again then she shall have only a bed and furniture, and what wearing Cloaths She hath. Also I give and bequeath unto my Eldest Son JOHN HOUSTON one hundred acres of LAND called SCOTS LOTT and which he is now possessed of, to him and his heir male procreate of his own body and so to continue from heir male to heir male Entailed for Ever.

Item I give to my Son ROBERT HOUSTON the Plantation whereon I now Live and to be bounded by a branch coming out of a Creek Called HOUSTONS CREEK and running up the southern most side of and to field called Capt. Thomas old field to him and his heirs male procreate of his own body and to continue from heir male to heir male Entailed for Ever.

Item I give to my son JAMES all that Land from the last mentioned branch to the Northwards of it and to run across the head of the plantation as so far as shall take in two hundred and fifty acres of Land to him and his heirs male procreate of his body and to continue from heir male to heir male Entailed for Ever.

Item I give and bequeath Seventy five acres of Marish Lying and being on the North side of Pocomoke River part of a parcel of Marish Called HOUSTONS CHOICE to be Equally divided between my Said Sons ROBERT and JAMES and their heirs male and to continue from heir male to heir male Entailed for Ever. I give to my son THOMAS HOUSTON one piece of Land Lying in the forked Neck called SECOND CHOICE to him and his heirs male procreate of his own body and to continue from heir male to heir male Entailed for Ever. Also I will that if any of my Said Sons JOHN, ROBERT JAMES and THOMAS should happen to dye without heir male procreate of their bodys - in Such Case the Lands hereby given to that person Shall descend to my sons JOSEPH and BENJAMIN to be equally shared between them and to remain in the Same Nature as is above Expressed to hem and their heirs for Ever.

Item (here the will was broke)

Item I give, Have given unto my Son JOHN HOUSTON Girl called MARY who is now in his possession and has been ever Since she was twelve month old which said negros I have freely given as a gift to my said Son and his heirs before sufficient Evidences before this my last will was writt and one chest marked JH and one gun one iron Kettle one brass skillet one table and one feather bed all which he hath in his possession.

Item I give unto my Said Son JOHN HOUSTON one case of pistolls and Holsters with my great Saddle murb? Bridle and all other furniture thereunto belonging and all my wearing Cloathes as also four Ewes and two hides of upper Leather and two hides of Sole Leather.

Item I give to my Son ROBERT one musket marked RH one mare called good Willie the increase Male of the Said mare the female increase of the said mare to be for the use of my Son's THOMAS, JOSEPH and BENJAMIN and their heirs and the profits of them to be Equally Shared among them Likewise I give unto my Son ROBERT one long table and form one great cupboard three black walnut chairs and one great Chair(?) with my name on it which are now in my dwelling house.

Item I give unto my Son JAMES HOUSTON one long Chest one Small long table with a cedar frame one long gun called up Shott, one young filly of a ____ colour and three black walnut chairs which are in JOHN PITTS custody and two Cows and Calves and four Ewes to be delivered to him when he is at age.

Item I give unto my Eldest son (viz?) JOHN four black walnut chairs.

Item I give unto my Daughter GRACE BENSTON three Ewes three weathers(?) and the first Live child which my Negro Betty shall happen to bear to recovered by my said Daughter when it is weanable One hide of Tanned Sole Leather one hide of curryed upper Leather.

Item I give and bequeath unto my Son THOMAS the next child Live child that my Said Negro woman Betty doth bear whether it be male or female to be received by my Said Son THOMAS when it is weanable and three chairs that is in JOHN PITTS custody.

Item I give unto my Son JOSEPH one Negro woman called Betty to him and his heirs for Ever with Encrease (except before excepted) and two chairs which are in the custody of the Said PITTS.

Item I give unto my Son BENJAMIN one Negro Boy called Dick to him and his heirs for Ever.

Item I give and bequeath unto my Daughter COMFORT HOUSTON two Ewes and ____ weathers.

Further more I will and Desire that all the rest of my Goods Chattels and household Stuff Shale remain and be for the use and in the possession of my Wife GRACE HOUSTON during the time She remains my widow and afterwards to be Equally Shared and distributed between my Children JAMES, COMFORT, THOMAS, JOSEPH and BENJAMIN and their heirs and if either of my Sons JOSEPH or BENJAMIN or both of them should dye without issue then the Negro hereby given to that party Shall fall to my Son THOMAS for the use of him and his heirs and if my son THOMAS shall dye without heir then the said Negro or Negroes so given shall fall to my son ROBERT . I do also will and desire that those Children above Said shall not sell or dispose of any thing hereby given them without the consent of their guardians hereafter in these presents nominated until they ___ either of them comes to age which shall be at Sixteen years if my wife GRACE marrys but if she remains in her widowhood not at age till one and Twenty Except my Daughter COMFORT HOUSTON and also I desire my Executors Wm. SMITH and JOHN TAYLOR of Pocomoke in the County of Somerset and province of Maryland to see that this my Last Will and Testament be well and truly Executed and fulfilled and do Commit the Care of my Said Children and Estate to the Said Executors during their minority and this I Declare to be my Last Will and Testament As witness my hand and Seal this 25th of April annog Dom 1693.

Robert R. Houston (His Mark) (Seale)

Signed Sealed in the Presence of Us:
John Taylor, William Benson, Henry Scholafield

The following was written on the bottom of the will:
Memorand in that this day being the 20th day of January 1693/4 Probate of this Will was made by the oaths of JOHN TAYLOR Wm BENSTON and HENRY SCHOLEFIELD who were all Sworn before me on the holy Evangolist.

Witness my hand ------------ Samule Hopkins Dep This County(?)


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