The Will of Richard Brooks, Caswell County, North Carolina, 1789

Richard Brooks was born about 1730 in either England or Virginia. In 1754, he and his brother Thomas were mentioned in a survey to divide the land of their father Jonathan Brooks in Kingston Parish, Gloucester Co., VA. He and his family stayed in Virginia until the 1780s. I first saw Richard Brooks in Caswell County, North Carolina in 1788 when he purchased 400 acres of land from George Barker. I have posted more information on Richard Brooks here.

Richard’s brother Thomas Brooks was my ancestor. He had moved from Virginia to North Carolina a few years before Richard. Thomas was found in Orange County, North Carolina in 1773 (Orange was the parent county of Caswell) when he purchased land. I have not yet found Thomas’ will (he died in Caswell County, North Carolina in 1819) . But I did find Richard’s will and it is posted below. If you are connected to this family, I would love to hear from you. Please leave a comment below or email me at ginger. reney at gmail.com.

The will of Richard Brooks was obtained from the North Carolina State Archives in Raleigh, North Carolina.  For more information on locating wills and ordering copies from the North Carolina State Archives, check out  my Looking for Wills at the North Carolina State Archives – Updated post.

The following will was found in the Caswell County Series of Original Wills, 1771-1927, box no. 1 Call no. 020.801.1.

Looking for more information? Want to know who bought Richard’s kitchen dishes? Well, unfortunately, although he wrote a will, I did not find an estate file for him in the loose papers at the Archives. This doesn’t mean proceedings of his estate were not copied in a bound volume (check out the FamilySearch bound Probate Records here) To see a list of all available Brooks family Estate files in Caswell County, North Carolina, click here


 

Summary of Will:

Written: October 3rd, 1789

Wife:  Ann (Ann’s will can be found here)

Children:
William Bird Brooks (under 21)
Elizabeth “Betsy” Brooks
Frances Armstead Brooks
John Brooks
Ann Smith Graves

Executor: wife Ann and son in law Solomon Graves
Witness: W. F. Smith and Israel Barker

Original Scanned Images:

The original images are 16″ wide and were scanned in two pieces and then stitched back together using Microsoft PowerPoint software. There were 4 pages total which I have shown below.

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 1

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 1

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 1

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 2

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 1

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 3

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 1

Richard Brooks Will, Caswell County, NC, 1789, page 4

 

 

 

 

Transcript of Will:

In the Name of God Amen, I Richard Brookes of the County of Caswell and state of North Carolina, Being in a low state of health, but of perfect sense and memory thanks be to Almighty God for the blessing. But taking into Consideration the shortness and Uncertainty of this Transitory Life, and that it is appointed for all Men once to die, do make Constitute and ordain this my last will and Testament to be peformed, In manner and form following that is to say first and Principally I recommend my soul into the hands of Almighty God who gave it me and my body to the Earth from whence it was taken to be Buried in Decent Christian Burial at the Discretion of my Executors whom I shall hereafter nominate and appoint – and unto such worldly goods as it hath pleased Almighty God to bless me in this life with I Give Dimiss and Depose of the same in Manner and form following and first my Desire is that all my Lawful Debts be paid, ….

Item; I lend to my Beloved Wife Ann Brookes, the Land and Plantation whereon I now live, with one third part of the rest of my Estate both real and personal, during her natural life or Widowhood, and at her Death or Intermarriage to be Equally Divided among my four youngest children (to Wit) William Bird Brookes, Betsy Brookes, Frances Armisted Brookes, and John Brookes, Excepting the land and plantation whereon I now live, which at my wifes death or Intermarriage I leave to be Equally divided between my two sons to Wit, William Bird Brookes and John Brookes and their heirs.

Item; I give and bequeath to my Daughter Ann Smith Graves one negro woman named Hannah, and one Negro boy named John,

Item, I leave all the remaining part of my Estate in the hands of my wife until my son William Bird Brookes shall arrive to the age of twenty one years and then to be equally divided among my four youngest children to Wit, William Bird Brookes, Betsy Brookes, Frances Armsted Brookes, and John Brookes. Except my Wife should Intermarry before my son William Bird Brookes arrives to the age of Twenty one years and then and in that case my will and Desire is that the division should be made at her intermarriage.

Lastly I appoint my beloved wife Ann Brookes and my son in law Solomon Graves, Whole and sole executrix and Executor of this my last will and Testament to be performed. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand affixed my seal this third day of October in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and Eighty Nine.

Signed sealed published and Declared in presents of
W. Smith, Jurat
Israel Barker, Jurat
Signed Richard Brookes
Soloman Graves Qualified Executor

To learn more about Richard Brook(e)s of Caswell County, North Carolina, check out my other post here.

Richard Brooks of Caswell Co., NC (1730-1790)

Richard Brooks was born about 1730, probably in Virginia, and died about 1790 in Caswell County, North Carolina.  In his will written October 3, 1789 he mentioned his wife Ann Brooks and his 5 children (see original will transcript here):

  1. William Bird Brooks (c. 1774-after 1830)
  2. Elizabeth “Betsey” Brooks (born c. 1789)
  3. Francis Armestead Brooks (c. 1781 – after 1860 in Alabama) married James Sheppard
  4. John Brooks (c. 1785 – after 1809)
  5. Ann Smith Brooks (c. 1770 – c. 1805), married Solomon Graves

Richard Brooks was living in Kingston Parish, Gloucester County, Virginia prior to his removal to Caswell County, North Carolina between 1770 and 1780.  Caswell County was formed from Orange County in 1779.  It is possible, Richard lived in Orange County, North Carolina from 1770-1779 when part of the county became Caswell County.

On December 10, 1754, Richard and Thomas Brooks were listed in a survey to divide land equally between the two men according to the last will and testament of Mr. Jonathan Brooks in Kingston Parish, Gloucester Co., VA. [1]

On April 10, 1770, Richard and his wife _____’s daughter, Ann Smith Brooks, was baptized in Kingston Parish, Gloucester Co., VA [1].  Unfortunately, I did not see a marriage record for Richard Brooks in the Kingston Parish Book.

Richard’s wife Ann was listed on the 1800 Caswell County, NC census report after he died. She was listed between the ages of 26 and 45, born between 1755 and 1774. This would have made her about 16 years of age at the time of Richard’s daughter, Ann Smith Brooks’ date of birth in 1770 in Virginia.  It is possible Ann Smith Brooks’ mother was someone other than Ann. It is also possible her mother’s maiden name was Smith, for whom she was named after.

Richard’s will was written in October of 1789 and proved in January of 1790.  His Wife, Ann Brooks’ will was written March 4, 1806 and was proved in January court of 1809.  In her will, she listed her 9 grandchildren, 6 of whom were the children of her son William Bird Brooks and 3 of whom were children of her daughter Frances A (Brooks) Sheppard. Her son in law, Solomon Graves (married to Ann Smith Brooks) was listed as executor. Ann Smith Brooks Graves must have died prior to her mother writing her will in 1806 since she was not listed as an heir (or she was not the daughter of Ann).

Richard and Ann Brooks’ son William Bird Brooks settled in Giles County, Tennessee after his parents died. He was married to Sarah Paine in Person County, North Carolina.

Richard and Ann Brooks’ daughter Frances Armistead Brooks Sheppard removed to Butler County, Alabama where she died about 1860.

Richard Brooks was probably the brother of Thomas Brooks and son of Jonathan Brooks of Gloucester County, Virginia.  I believe Richard’s brother, Thomas Brooks, and his wife, Mary Blacknall, were the parents of my ancestor, Christopher Brooks (1755-1781), along with his siblings, Sarah/Sallie Brooks Holderness, Charles H Brooks, Thomas Brooks Jr., George Brooks and possibly Mary and Jonathan Brooks.

Caswell Co NC Wills – BROOKS

The following original wills are housed at the North Carolina State Archives in Raleigh, North Carolina.  The collection title is “Caswell County, North Carolina Series of Original Wills, 1771-1927″ and the call number is C.R. 020.801.1. The Brooks family wills were contained in the first box of the series (no. 1).  There might have been more Brooks family wills contained in the box written after 1900. I only inventoried those wills written before 1900 (on 10/25/2008).

  1. Richard Brookes, dated 1790 (wife Ann)
  2. Ann Brooks, dated 1808 (wife of Richard)
  3. Thomas Brooks, dated 1855 (wife Martha)

The will of Richard Brookes was recorded in Caswell County, North Carolina Will Book B, p. 321.  This will was abstracted in Katherine Kerr Kendall’s book “Caswell County, North Carolina will books, 1777-1814″ on page 30. (See entry below)

Abstract

The abstract reads the following:

Richard Brooks (spelled Brookes on original) [actually the "e" is crossed out on the original that I looked at in 2008] – Will – w. 3 Oct 1789. Wife Ann; 4 youngest children William Bird Brooks (under 21), Betsy Brooks, Frances Armstead Brooks, John Brooks; daughter Ann Smith Graves; Exec: wife Ann and son in law Solomon Graves. Wit: W. F. Smith, Israel Barker.

The will of Ann Brooks was recorded in Caswell County, North Carolina Will Book E, p. 379.  This will was abstracted in Katherine Kerr Kendall’s book “Caswell County, North Carolina will books, 1777-1814″ on page 109. (See entry below)

abstract

The abstract reads the following:

Ann Brooks – Will – w. 4 Mar 1806. Son William B. Brooks; 9 grandchildren: Wm B. Brooks sons John, Robert, & William and daughters Betsy, Ann, and Joanna; Frances A. Sheppard’s daughters Ann, Betsy, and Polley.  Exec:  son Wm B. Brooks. Wit:  Sol Graves, S. Graves, John L. Graves.

The will of Thomas Brooks includes the following:

Thomas Brooks – Will – written 31 Mar 1855
Wife: Martha Brooks
Children: son William Brooks (under 21), daughters Nicy and Mary Ann.
Exec: Wife Martha Brooks
Wits: Charles G Russell and Byrd D Paylor

There was no estate folder for Richard Brookes at the archives. There are, however, estate folders for the Thomas and Ann Brooks listed above.

———————————————————————————

Goals:

  1. To copy, scan, and transcribe the wills of Richard, Ann, and Thomas Brooks of Caswell Co., NC from the Archives

- Update 10/25/08:  These 3 wills were copied by the Archives.

-  Update 4/2/09: Wills were scanned into my computer and info entered into my genealogy software.

-  Update 9/7/2010:  The wills of Richard, Ann, and Thomas Brook(e)s were scanned, transcribed and uploaded to this blog.

  1. To copy, scan, and transcribe the estate records of Ann and Thomas Brooks of Caswell Co., NC from the Archives

Sources:

  1. Caswell County, North Carolina Series of Original Wills, 1771-1927, C.R. 020.801.1, North Carolina State Archives.
  2. Katherine Kerr Kendall, Caswell County, North Carolina will books 1777-1814. 1784 tax list. guardians’ accounts 1794-1819 and Caswell County North Carolina will books 1814-1843. guardians’ accounts 1819-1847. 1850 & 1860 census mortality schedules powers of attorney from deed books 1777-1880, can be searched online at ancestry.com.

Related Posts:

Brooks family estate records from Caswell County, North Carolina

John Brooks Binns (1910 – 1989)

1910-1989

John Brooks Binns 1910-1989

John Brooks Binns was one of my paternal great-grandfathers.  He was born March 20th, 1910 in Monticello (Drew County), Arkansas to John Milton Binns and Perthenia Brooks.

On August 19th, 1934, he married the love of his life and my great-grandmother, Blanche Kathryne Hill in Longview, Texas.  They celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary in Fort Smith, (Sebastian County) Arkansas in 1984.

John Binns and his wife Blanche were school teachers in Alma, Arkansas.  They had three daughters together. John had blonde hair and blue eyes and was approximately 6 feet tall.  He cherished all his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.  He was a hugger. I remember he used to squeeze me so tight I couldn’t breathe!  He played football in high school and college. He attended Monticello A&M College in the early 1930s. He was president of the college Press Club and well-liked by his peers.

John Brooks Binns died December 10, 1989 in Fort Smith, (Sebastian County) Arkansas.  He was buried in Roselawn Cemetery, Fort Smith, (Sebastian County) Arkansas.  His wife Blanche (Hill) Binns died December 27th, 1992 and was buried beside him in Roselawn Cemetery.

Related Posts:

Photos:
John Binns and great-granddaughter, Ginger R. Smith

Posts:
Google Map of Binns Fort Smith, Arkansas Residences

Children of Jeremiah Brooks of Person Co NC

According to the family tree file of Rosalyn Sumner, Jeremiah Brooks was born about 1773 and died in Person County, North Carolina in 1871. He married Elizabeth Thomas, 18 Mar 1795, Caswell County, North Carolina. 

The children of Jeremiah and Elizabeth Brooks were:

1. David BROOKS b: 1796 in Person County, NC
2. Nancy Woody BROOKS b: 1798 in NC
3. Green BROOKS b: ABT 1800 in NC
4. Hosey BROOKS b: AFT 1800 in NC
5. Susan BROOKS b: AFT 1800 in NC
6. Jane BROOKS b: 25 FEB 1804 in Caswell County, NC
7. Andrew BROOKS b: c 1805 in NC
8. Logan BROOKS b: 1814 in NC
9. Elizabeth BROOKS b: 1822 in NC

Related Posts:

Jeremiah Brooks of Caswell County, North Carolina

Jeremiah Brooks of Person County, North Carolina

Logan Brooks c 1814 Person Co NC

Logan Brooks was the son of Jeremiah Brooks and Elizabeth Thomas of Caswell and Person County North Carolina. He was born about 1814 in Person County, North Carolina.

1840 Person Co., NC Census Report
Logan Brooks, 1m 20-30, 2f < 5, 1f 20-30 [b. bet 1810-1820]
Same page as father, Jeremiah Brooks
Roll 368, p. 292

1850 Person Co., NC Census Report
Lougan Brooks, 36 yo (b. abt 1814), NC
Susan Brooks, 33 yo (b. abt 1817), NC
Martha J Brooks, 10 yo (b. abt 1840), NC
Jeremiah Brooks, 6 yo (b. abt 1844), NC
Ann F Brooks, 3 yo (b. abt 1847), NC
M432_640, p. 223, Image 258

1860 Person Co., NC Census Report
Logan Brooks, 47 yo (b. abt 1813), NC
Susan Brooks, 43 yo (b. abt 1817), NC
Jerrymiah Brooks, 14 yo (b. abt 1846), NC
Emily Brooks, 5 yo (b. abt 1855), NC
Rany L Brooks, 3 yo (b. abt 1857), NC
M653_909, p. 445

Related posts:

1. Andrew Brooks (1814)
2. Children of Jeremiah Brooks of Person County, North Carolina
3. Jeremiah Brooks (1773-1871) of Person County, North Carolina

Andrew Brooks, c1805, Person Co., NC

Andrew Brooks was born about 1805 in Person County, North Carolina. He was the son of Jeremiah Brooks and Elizabeth Thomas of Caswell and Person Counties, North Carolina.

Here is Andrew on the 1850 Person County Census report with his wife Sarah and their children:

1850 Person Co., NC Census Report
Andrew Brooks, 45 yo (b. abt 1805) NC
Sarah Brooks, 44 yo (b. abt 1806), NC
Nancy A Brooks, 20 yo (b. abt 1830), NC
Elijah Brooks, 18 yo (b. abt 1832), NC
Albert G Brooks, 16 yo (b. abt 1834), NC
Elizabeth S Brooks, 14 yo (b. abt 1835), NC
Harriet J Brooks, 11 yo (b. abt 1839), NC
Sarah F Brooks, 6 yo (b. abt 1844), NC
John B Brooks, 3 yo (b. abt 1847), NC
M432_640, p. 423, Image 257;

Related posts:

1. Logan Brooks (1814)
2. Children of Jeremiah Brooks of Person County, North Carolina
3. Jeremiah Brooks (1773-1871) of Person County, North Carolina

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