Written 12 Aug 1805 in Willsboro, Essex, New York
In the name of God Amen
I, Gideon Sheldon, of the town of Willsborough in the County of Essex and State of New York being weak in body but of sound mind and memory blessed be Almighty God for the same do make and publish this my last will and Testament in manner & form following, that is to say, FIRST I do hereby will and order that all the Debts which I shall owe at the Time of my decease shall be paid out of my personal property and that the remainder be divided for the following manner. Vizt that my beloved wife Rhoda shall have one equal third part of my personal property after my Debts are paid as aforesaid which I do hereby will and order her as her dower and the remaining two-thirds of my personal property I do hereby will and order to be equally divided between my two Children Deborah Sheldon and Gideon Sheldon. I further give and bequeath to my said wife Rhoda the use of one third part of the House and Farm whereon I now live during her natural life. I also give and devise to my said daughter Deborah her heirs and Assigns one third part of the farm whereon I now live which is not to be incumbered with any part of her said Mother Rhoda’s thirds as aforesaid. I also give and devise to my said son Gideon Sheldon his heirs and Assigns the remaining two thirds of my real Estate consisting of Two thirds of the Farm whereon I now live containing one hundred acres of land which two thirds is to bear the incumbrance of my said wife Rhoda’s thirds during her natural life as aforesaid, and I do Also will and order that all their Shares of personal property and the Income of the respective shares of land as above mentioned be wholly appropriated by my Executors to the maintenance and education of my said Children Deborah Sheldon and Gideon Sheldon until they respectively arrive to lawful age. And lastly I do hereby name and Appoint Thomas Pray and Benjamin Sheldon my sole executors to this my last will and testament, hereby revoking all former wills by me made. In witness whereof I have here unto set my hand and Seal the twelfth day of August In the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and five. Note the words “All their Shares of” in the ninth line from the bottom, of the first page are intertwined – Gideon Sheldon (his seal).
Signed, Sealed, published, and declared by the within named Gideon Sheldon to be his last will and testament. In the presence of us, who have hereunto subscribed our names as witnesses. In the presence of the testator – Isaac Sheldon, Isaac Sheldon Junr Peleg Sheldon
Official Appointing of the Executors – 27 Nov 1805
Essex: Be it remembered that on the Twenty Seventh day of November. In the year of our Lord one thousand Eight hundred and five personally came and Appeared before me James McCrea Surrogate of the County of Essex, aforesaid Isaac Sheldon and Peleg Sheldon of the Town of Willsborough in the County of Essex and State of New York, Farmers and being duly sworn on their oaths declared that they and each of them did see Gideon Sheldon sign and Seal the within written Instrument purporting to be the will of the said Gideon Sheldon Bearing date the twelfth day of August In the year of our Lord one thousand Eight hundred and five and heard him publish and declare the same as and for his list will and testament that at the Time thereof he the said Gideon Sheldon was of sound disposing mind and Memory to the Best of the Known knowledge and belief o them the deponents, And that their Names Subscribed to the said Will are of their respective proper hands Writing Which they Subscribed as Witnesses to the will In the Testator presence and they saw Isaac Sheldon Junior the other Witness sign his name as a Witness to the said will In the presence of the Testator – James McCrea Surrogate Essex County, Be it also remembered That on the Twenty seventh day of November In the year of our Lord one thousand Eight hundred and five Thomas Pray and Benjamin Sheldon the Executors of the within written will of Gideon Sheldon likewise Appeared before me the same James McCrea and were duly sworn to the Execution and performance of the said Will by severally Taking the Oath of an Executor and by law appointed before me – James McCrea Surrogate.
Proving of the Will – 4 Dec 1805
I Certify the aforegoing will of Gideon Sheldon to be a true Copy of the original will proved before me and of the Certificate of the proof there and Also of the Certificate of the Oath of the Executors to the said will examined and compound the record with the same this 4th day of December 1805 – James McCrea, Surrogate
Essex County – The People of the State of New York the grace of god free and Independent: To all who these presents shall come or may concern send Greeting Know ye that at Willsborough In the County of Essex on the Twenty seventh day of November In the year of our Lord one thousand Eight hundred and five before James McCrea Esquire Surrogate of our said County the last will and Testament of Gideon Sheldon of the Town aforesaid deceased, a Copy whereof is hereunto annexed, was proved and is now approved and Allowed by us; and the said deceased having whilst living and at the Time of his death Good, Chattels or Credits within this State by means whereof the proving and Registering the said Will and the granting Administrators of all and Singular the said goods Chattels and Credits and also the Auditing, Allowing and final discharging the account there of doth belong unto us; the Administration of all and Singular the goods Chattels and Credits of the said deceased and any way conceiving his will is granted unto Thomas Pray and Benjamin Sheldon of the Town of Willsborough In the County of Essex Executors in the said Will named they being first dully sworn and well faithfully Administer the same and to make and exhibit a true and perfect Inventory of all and Singular the said goods Chattles and Credits and also to under and Just and true account thereof when thereunto required, In Testimony whereof we have caused the seal of Office of our said Surrogate to be hereunto affixed. Witness James McCrea Esquire Surrogate of the said County at Willsborough aforesaid the Second day of December In the year of our Lord on thousand Eight hundred and five and of our Independence the thirtieth – James McCrea Surrogate.
I Certify the aforegoing to be a true Copy of the original Letter Testamentory Granted to Thomas Pray and Benjamin Sheldon examined and compared.