Will of Grimes Neil, 1839 Scott Co. VA
I Grimes Neil of Scott County and State of Virginia being in feeble health but sound of mind, do make this my last will and testament.
Art. 1 I herby appoint William B. Neil, Hezekiah P. Neil and John A. Hall, Executors, to this my last will and testament, to do and act as I shall herein after prescribe.
(Note: Notice here that he does not call Hezekiah his son. And he is never mentioned again in the rest of the will. However William B. is named as a son later and is given control of Grimes’ firms and estate and the responsibility of the care of his mother and siblings. This shows that the relationship between Grimes and Hezekiah was something other than Father-Son. I believe Uncle/Nephew. )
Art. 2 My will is that all my just dues be collected and all my just debts paid.
Art. 3 My will is that all my property both personal and real be kept together and my farm carried on as usual conducted by an overseer.
Art. 4th My will is that my Children be educated out of the proceeds of my farm and as MY SON JAMES A. NEIL desires to become a professional man my will is that he shall chose his profession; and my will is that MY SON WILLIAM B. NEIL WILLIAM B. NEIL Shall have the third of the Neil proceeds of the firm of Grimes Neil and Co. and my Will is that he be a good and industrious agent for his mother and brothers and that he shall not permit any spirits to be kept on the place to be sold either direct or indirect. And my will is that MY SON HOUSTAIN G. NEIL shall have five hundred dollars of my money next fall, if he desires it, to trade in cattle of which he shall have the whole proceeds and also that he shall return the five hundred dollars to the estate when the youngest child becomes of age, and my will is that my children after the expiration of five years from the present date shall each one as he becomes of age if he desires it draw his proportional part of the estate and my will is that MALINDA DOBS be paid two hundred dollars by my executors out of my estate, as soon as can conveniently be done. And my will is that MARY NEIL shall have fifty dollars paid to her in twelve or eighteen months.
(Note: Here he does not call Mary his daughter either, and the amount he leaves her is considerably less than the amount he leaves Malinda Dobs, his illegitimate daughter by Phobe. I don’t think his wife would have stood for that. Plus Grimes died in 1839 and the 1840 census shows 5 males in the house with Elizabeth.) Art 5th. My will is that my beloved wife Elizabeth Ann Neil, shall live on and have her support off of my farm during her natural life.Art. 6 My will is that so many of my sons as may not see fit to lift their proportional part as he or they become of age, shall work on to gether till my youngest son becomes of age at which time an equal division of all my personal estate shall be made amongst them, my will is that my slaves when my youngest son becomes of age shall be equally divided amongst my children which division the children themselves shall make if they can agree, if not the slaves shall be sold and the proceeds of the sales equally divided amongst them.Art 7th My will is that the Firm of Grimes Neil & Co. suspend its operations for the term of twelve months during which time it shall collect all its dues and pay all its debts and then given till the expiration of the five years specified in the articles of the contract and it be conducted under the name of WILLIAM B. NEIL AND CO. Thence forward, and that after the expiration of the five years the capital of the firm shall be managed as the executors and the firm may agree for the benefit of my estate.
Art 8th My will is that the firm of Neil and Pain be managed which is to be WILLIAM B. NEIL AND PAYNE.
Art 9th My will is that the firm of Neil and Jones which embraces a tanyard, shall work out the stock of leather that is on hand as soon as possible and pay over the amount due me in stock to my executors, my will is that the yard with five or six acres of land around it shall be sold if can be, if not rented out.
Art 10 My will is that my surplus cash on hand shall be appropriated to the payment of the debts herein allowed to and given under hand the 13th day of September, in the year of our Lord, One thousand eight hundred and thirty nine.
Upon Reflection, My will is that my farm shall be equally divided between MY TWO SONS, ANDREW JACKSON NEIL AND LILBURN HAYNES NEIL, ANDREW JACKSON NEIL AND LILBURN HAYNES NEIL when Lilburn Haynes Neil becomes of age if their Mother shall have decd. If not the division is to be postponed till her death, if the land estate upon being valued do not make them equal sharers in my estate, they shall be made equal by money or stock.
Joshua Speer jr.
Robt. Shankland Grimes Neil ( his signiture)
Virginia At a court held for Scott County the 13th day of October 1839.
This last will and testament of Grimes Neil deceased was proven by the oaths of Joshua Speer jr. and Robert M. Shankland. Witness thereto and is ordered to be recorded.
Atteste John S. Martin CSC
The personal property of Grimes appraised for a total of $8,582.90