Monday, August 19, 2013

Will of Thomas Blake, Southmolton, Devon - The National Archives PROB 11/1594/143

Thomas Blake, the testator names only his son William in his will below (in 1814 his son would have been almost 15 years of age).

There is a marriage of a Thomas Blake and Grace Spencer 26 Apr 1799 at Bishops Nympton. Interestingly there is a baptism of William Adams Blake 30 Oct 1801 (born 18 Dec 1799) at South Molton with parents Thomas Blake and Grace. The marginal note in the will below identifies the son of Thomas William Blake as using the name William Adams in 1841. Although there are two other children born to a Thomas and Grace Blake in this time period they were both at Little Torrington and one was 19 May 1799 (Thomas) which would seem somewhat impossible. Plus, he only identifies the one son William in his will.

I have the transcription of the Bishops Nympton parish Registers and the marriage registration is as follows:

The Year 1799    Registration Number 269
Thomas Blake of the parish of South Molton bachelor
And Grace Spencer of this parish
Spinster were
Married in this Church by Licence
This twenty sixth day of April in the year One Thousand Seven hundred
And Ninety nine by me J. B. Karslake Curate
This marriage was Solemnized       Thomas Blake
Between us:                                      Grace Spencer
In the presence              George Spencer
Of:                                 John Rodd

The parents of Thomas are a mystery at the moment. Since he is living at Southmolton, I would probably look at Northmolton Blake families first but my transcription for Northmolton only goes to the early 1700s. A future project perhaps to bring that register up further in my transcriptions.

I must admit to wondering why William would use the surname Adams instead of Blake and I suspect that he is on the 1851 census at Barnstaple. He is listed as head, married to Sarah with daughter Elizabeth, son William and daughter Ann. He is a Smith and was born at South Molton as were his wife and children. Could there be descendants of this Adams family still living?

From Find My Past – Devon Marriages – William Adams married Sarah Fooks 5 Aug 1821 at South Molton. Their children baptized: Elizabeth 24 Mar 1826 at South Molton, William baptized 25 Feb 1829 at South Molton, and Ann born in 1832.

Transcriber: Elizabeth Kipp
Recorded: 18 Aug 2013
Source: The National Archives, PROB 11/1594/143
Testator: Thomas Blake
Place: Southmolton, Devon, England
Type of Record: Will
Date of document: 6 Jul l814, probated 10 Jul 1817
Condition: 19th century English, legible copy

 [Margin]: Thomas
[Margin]: Blake
[Margin]: 5

1    In the Name of God Amen This is the last Will and
2    Testament of me Thomas Blake of Southmolton in the County of Devon being in sound and
3    Disposing mind and understanding thanks be to Almighty God for the same in form and in manner
4    Following I give and bequeath to my Son William Blake all and every part of my property I am
5    Possessed oft at my decease and it is my wish my Wife to take to her jointer according to her marriage
6    Bond It is my wish and desire to appoint the Rev[eren]d W. M. Stawell Mr George Spencer of the
7    Parish of Bishopsnympton and Mr. John Spencer of the parish of Twitchen to act in Trust for
8    The said William Blake until he arrives to the age of twenty one years Witness my hand this
9    Sixth day of July in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and fourteen Thomas
10    Blake My reason for nominating three Trustees is supposing the Rev[eren]d Mr. Stawell may
11    Not like to take the trouble
12    Appeared Personally Francis Trix of Southmolton in the County of Devon
13    And Wm Smith of the same place and made oath that they knew and were well acquainted
14    With Thomas Blake late of Southmolton in the County of Devon deceased for several years before
15    And to the time of his death and have often seen him write and subscribe his name whereby they
16    Have acquired a knowledge of his manner and Character of Hand writing and Subscription and
17    Having now viewed and perused the paper writing hereunto annexed purporting to be and
18    Contain his last Will and Testament the said Will beginning thus “In the Name of God Amen”
19    Ending thus “Witness my hand this sixth day of July in the year of our Lord one thousand eight
20    Hundred and fourteen and thus subscribed “Thomas Blake” and leaving the following Memorandum
21    Written after the said Name as follows “My reason for nominating three Trustees is supposing
22    The Reverend Mogridge Stawell may not like the trouble” these deponents say that they verily and
23    In their Conscience believe the whole Series and Contents of the said paper writing and the
24    Name Thomas Blake subscribed to the said Will to have been written and subscribed by and
25    With the proper hand of the said Thomas Blake deceased Francis Trix Wm. Smyth
26    Our the 19th day of October 1816 the said Francis Trix and William Smyth were severally truly sworn
27    To the truth of this Affidavit before me John Huxtable Clerk
28    [Margin] On the 10th day of August 1841 Admon with this Will annexed of the Goods Chattels and Credits of Thomas Blake late of Southmolton in the County of Devon deceased laste ____? Mr. John Spencer deceased while living one of the Executors according to the tenor of the said Will was granted to William Adams (in the Will written William Blake the Son and Universal Legatee named in the said Will) having been first sworn by Commission duly to administer The Rev[eren]d William Mogridge Stawell Clerk also an Executor according to the tenor of the said Will deceased, the said John Spencer deceased and George Spencer deceased the other Executor according to the terms of the said Will and died without having ________ the said Will (____appears)
29    Proved at London 30th July 1817 before the Judge by the oath of John Spencer one of the Ex[ecut]ors
30    According to the tenor to whom Admon was granted being first sworn by Commission duly to administer
31    Power reserved to the Rev[eren]d William Mogridge Stawell Clerk and George Spencer the other Ex[ecut]ors
32    According to the tenor

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