Mackness Rowlett (ca. 1747-1813)

Notes by Russell J. Rowlett, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

These notes are copyrighted. I give permission for anyone to make copies as long as the copies are for personal research, nothing is charged to anyone by anyone for the copies, and the copyright notice is not removed from the copies. All other rights reserved.

I'm indebted to Dr. William Rowlett of Hopkinsville, Kentucky, for providing the following copy of the will of Mackness Rowlett. The transcription was made by Mary Beadles and published in her book, A History of Four Jackson Purchase Families. The original is in Prince Edward County Will Book 4, page 391.

In the name of God Amen, I Mackness Rowlett of Prince Edward County, being weak in body but of sound mind and disposing memory for which I thank God, and calling to mind the uncertainty of human life and being desirous to dispose of all such worldly estate as it has pleased God to bless me with, I give and bequeath the same in manner following, that is to say, my will and desire is that all of my just debts and reasonable expenses be paid by my executors hereafter mentioned out of my personal estate.

Item. I give and bequeath to my son, Stephen D. Rowlett, all my tract of land whereon I now live, also the tract of land I bought of William [illegible] together will all and singular appurtenances thereunto belonging to both said tracts of land above mentioned, to him and his heirs forever.

Item. I give and bequeath to my son, Thomas Rowlett, one negro man named Surry, also seventy dollars to be raised out of my personal estate (that is to say) out of any part of my stock, plantation, utensils, household and kitchen furniture, in order to make his portion equal with the rest of my children, to him and his heirs forever.

Item. I give and bequeath to my son, John Rowlett, two negroes named Sam and Nelson to him and his heirs forever.

Item. I lend to my daughter, Sally Dejarnett, two negroes named America and Roma during her natural life, and at her death I give the said negroes to be equally divided among all my said daughter's children to them and their heirs forever.

Item. I lend to my daughter, Elizabeth George, two negroes named Clem and Haskins during her natural life, and at her death I give and bequeath the said negroes to be equally divided among all my said daughter's children to them and their heirs forever.

Item. I lend to my daughter, Frances Harper, two negroes named Hall and Paris during her natural life, and at her death I give and bequeath the said negroes to be equally divided among all my said daughter's children to them and their heirs forever.

Item. I lend to my daughter, Julia B. Dodson, two negroes named Lidia and Anderson during her natural life, and at her death I give and bequeath the said negroes to be equally divided among all my said daughter's children to them and their heirs forever.

Item. I lend to my daughter, Amelia Rowlett, two negroes named Cati and Esmound during her natural life, and if my said daughter should marry and have children than and in that case, at my said daughter's death I give and bequeath the said negroes to be equally divided among all my said daughter's children to them and their heirs forever, but if my said daughter dies leaving no lawful heir of her body, then the said negroes to return back to my estate to be equally divided among all the rest of my children.

Item. I give and bequeath all the residue of my estate of what nature or kind soever it may be, not herein before particularly disposed of to be equally divided among my several children, named as followeth: Stephen D. Rowlett, Thomas Rowlett, John Rowlett, Sally Dejarnett, Elizabeth George, Frances Harper, Julia B. Dodson, and Amelia Rowlett, to them and their heirs forever.

And lastly I do hereby constitute and appoint my sons, Stephen D. Rowlett and Thomas Rowlett executors of this my last will and testament by me made, in witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and affixed my seal this fourth day of July in the year of our Lord, one thousand eight hundred twelve.

Signed: Mackness Rowlett (Seal)

Signed, sealed, published and declared as and for the last will and testament of the above named Mackness Rowlett in presence of us:

Stewart Jackson
John Rudd
Rowlett Perkins [Perkinson]
John Dickinson

At a court held for Prince Edward County February the 15th 1813. This last will and testament of Mackness Rowlett, deceased, was presented in Court and proved by the oaths of Stewart Jackson, John Rudd, Sr., and Rowlett Perkins, as three witnesses thereto. Ordered that the same be recorded. Stephen D. Rowlett and Thomas Rowlett, executors herein named, in open court refuse to take upon themselves the burden of the execution, and it appearing to the court that the heirs of the said Mackness Rowlett relinquish their right to administer, on the motion of William Hamblen, administration is granted him with the will annexed; thereupon he with Thomas Rowlett, Stephen D. Rowlett, and John Penick, Sr., his executors entered into and acknowledged their bond for that purpose in the penalty of Ten Thousand pounds conditioned according to law, and took the oath required by law. Certificate for obtaining probate thereof in due form is granted him.